What is a buddha’s nature?
Over the course of the fifteen centuries or so that Buddhism was in India, there came to be different views as to what kind of being a buddha is. Each of those views served a purpose, and the purpose of this module is to explore what those purposes might have been that various visions of buddhahood fulfilled. The principal questions to be asked here are:
- What was the Buddha of early Buddhism like?
- Was the Buddha omniscient?
- Does the Buddha still exist?
- Are there many Buddhas or just one?
- What kind of Buddha suits a philosopher?
- What is a rationalist’s Buddha like?
- What is the basis of the Buddha’s authority?
- What kinds of Buddha do Western Buddhists crave?