Buddhism: Buddhism and Document Essay example

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Buddhism DBQ

From the beginning of Buddhism to now, it has been compared and critiqued. When it spread it contradicted many well established beliefs and challenged rule. Many people, such as scholars, would come to accept or decline the belief of Buddhism. The many scholars of China would have different views of Buddhism. In Document 4 it states “Buddhism is no more than a cult of the barbarian peoples spread to China. It did not exist here in ancient times.” This scholar, lead Confucian scholar of the Tang imperial court Han Yu, did not accept Buddhism and its beliefs. However, from the documents provided, scholars were indifferent or favored Buddhism. In Document 2, scholar Zhi Dun seems to be neither for nor against Buddhism. Zhi Dun just recites the beliefs, and the way to reach Nirvana. Lastly, Buddhist scholar Zong Mi showed indifference but held all “teachers” of all the religions to be sacred. “Confucius, Laozi and the Buddha were perfect sages” “; all three teachings lead to the creation of an orderly society and for this they must be observed with respect.” (Document 5) Many of people of China disagreed with the beliefs of Buddhism. “Buddhism wears out the people’s strength, pilfers their wealth, causes people to abandon their lords and parents for the company of teachers, and severs man and wife with its monastic decrees. In destroying law and injuring humankind indeed nothing surpasses this doctrine!” (Document 6) What Emperor Wu meant by this was that he did not agree with the teachings of the Buddha. In Buddhism you fasted, not eating much food and losing physical strength. “Pilfers their wealth” refers to the giving away of all worldly possessions to get rid of sorrow caused by the items. Han Yu also does not agree with the transferring of the Buddha’s finger bone as it is sacred. “..there will be those in the crowd who will cut off their arms and mutilate their flesh in offering to the Buddha.” (Document 4)
Secondly, Han Yu does not agree with the Buddha because he is not from China and they are different. “Now the Buddha was a man of the barbarians who did not speak Chinese and who wore clothes of a different fashion.” (Document 4) Lastly, an anonymous Chinese scholar questioned and challenged the ways of the Buddha. “If Buddhism is the greatest and the most venerable of ways, why did the great…