Master of Buddhism Course

This is a blog for the course comments from the Master of Buddhism course through the Universal Life Church Seminary.
The course can be found at Buddhism Course.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Buddhism Week Sixteen Women in Buddhism

1. There are many possible reasons people cite as to why Buddha hesitated in allowing Mahapajapati to join the
Sangha. Can you think what any of them might be?

Buddha was a product of his time. He was raised to believe in the inferiority of women and lived in a culture that
actively promoted those ideals. Just because he was an enlightened being, doesn't mean he wasn't politically aware. He
likely considered that there would be resistance should he let women enter the Sangha. Perhaps he knew it would always
be a source of difficulty for the men who couldn't come to grips with it and that fact, not the women, would lead to the
destruction of the Sangha.

2. Does the Thai Sangha benefit by keeping women out? Why or why not?

Nobody ever benefits from elitist stratification.

3. What do you think the Buddha would say today if he were here to give advice to monks and nuns?

I believe that his advice would be the same, but he would now enjoy the fact that he would not have to make distinctions
based on gender.

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