8-Week Online Class with Philip Schrodt
This course will provide a systematic overview of Buddhist history, approaches, and practices from the perspective of the U.S. in the early 21st century. We will first review how Buddhism spread from northeast India through most of Asia and recently to the West, and the three major approaches: Theravadan (including IMCC's Insight approach), Mahayana (best known through Zen), and Vajrayana/Tibetan (Dalai Lama, among many). We will then look at common core concepts in the Buddha's teachings, followed by a review of some of the most commonly encountered suttas and meditation practices. We conclude with some observations, guided by Ann Gleig's work, on how Buddhism is evolving in the US.
Each week will have links to a two or three short readings available on the web, usually through the resources of Lion's Roar magazine. The class format will be roughly forty minutes of lecture followed by a twenty-minute Q&A period, though the Zoom link will remain open for longer Q&A.
The eight-week class will run from Thursday, 2 September through 21 October 2021 at 7pm to 8pm Eastern Daylight Time (UTC-0400).
Link to outline and readings: https://parusanalytics.com/fb2dl/ (opens in new window)
Topics by week:
Week 1: Introduction and Historical Overview
Week 2: The Historical Buddha and the Theravadan Tradition
Week 3: The Mahayana Tradition and Zen
Week 4: The Tibetan/Vajrayana Tradition
Week 5: Fundamentals
Week 6: Suttas
Week 7: Meditation
Week 8: Current trends in American Buddhism
Susan Stone supported the development of this course.
Scholarship support is available for this course: please do not let financial issues prevent you from attending.