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I don't see it as such.....
It implies that Theravada is "basic" and Mahayana/Vajrayana is "advanced" and therefore superior. I have heard this kind of view expressed many times, also the view that people of limited ability should stick to Theravada ( "Hinayana" ) because they wouldn't get the "advanced" stuff. It's all nonsense of course, just self-promotion and spin, but some people actually seem to believe it.
@Quandarius said:> I have tried, by looking on the Web, to find some account of the second tradition, without success. Is there anyone out there sufficiently well-read to be able to tell me where I may find that second account?
Buddhism has adapted to many different cultures over the last 2,500 years, and there are many schools and sub-schools, a great diversity and plurality. Some schools claim to be superior or more authentic, but this is generally just self-promotion, like "my car is bigger and goes faster than yours".
This Wiki article might give a sense of the diversity: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schools_of_Buddhism
@vinlyn said:And when you consider that over 6 BILLION people believe in God, it isn't exactly an idea to just dismiss.
Perhaps not, but then most people used to believe the earth was flat, and that the earth was at the centre of the universe.
In my view the prevalence of God belief is quite straightforwardly explained by the human need for comfort in a brief and uncertain existence.
I also suspect it is fear of death as final extinction which underlies most religious belief. Religions invariably propose some sort of afterlife or continuation ( Buddhism included ), which is part of their comfort and appeal.
May have to go to this local supermarket instead
Where I live most people go to the supermarket instead of church on a Sunday morning.
Praise the Lord Tesco!
For me some powerful meditative experiences over the years, the strongest ones were outdoors, sitting on the top of hills.
Also hearing the Heart Sutra for the first time, both profound and beautiful.