RELI 216- Midterm Exam Guide - Comprehensive Notes for the exam ( 239 pages long!)

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The mahayana school of thought within the buddhist faith evolved in later years, after the death of siddartha gautama, or buddha, as a more broadminded interpretation of buddhism. They branched out from the traditional form of buddhism, but nevertheless still studied and followed the buddhist sacred texts that came from the time of buddha, the sutras and the vinaya (hawkins, pg. 259) but took this buddhist concept one step further. For one, it was thought that the idea of sunyata, or emptiness, went beyond the philosophy that humans had no permanence, no soul, but that nothing at all had any lasting reality or essense. Buddha believed that because things were not real, they created and sense of discontent for humans and was therefore completely pointless (hawkins pg. Mahayana buddhists claimed that everything may seem to be a reality but in fact is simply an illusion.

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