Dialogues with solitary Buddhas 1
DOI link for Dialogues with solitary Buddhas 1
Dialogues with solitary Buddhas 1 book
In Chapter 2, Naomi Appleton discusses dialogues with pratyekabuddhas. According to standard Buddhist presentations, a pratyekabuddha is called such because he achieves awakening by himself, without access to the teachings of a full buddha, and does not communicate his realisation to others. The commentary to the Sutta Nipāta records the stories of such figures, each of whom is said to pursue a solitary form of renunciation, to ‘wander alone like a rhinoceros’, as the text’s famous refrain says. However, in early Buddhist narratives across Pāli and Sanskrit, pratyekabuddhas do not always live up to their solitary reputation, sometimes gathering together in groups and even teaching others, though not always using words. In this Chapter, Appleton will explore dialogues between pratyekabuddhas and non-awakened beings in early Buddhist narrative, and ask if there is anything distinctive about receiving a teaching from a solitary buddha. The common association between pratyekabuddhas and signs or images – rather than words – will feature large in this exploration, as she attempts to better understand how this unique category of awakened being interacts with the world.