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Basic points unifying Theravda and

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The Basic Points Unifying the Theravda and the Mahyna is an important Buddhist
ecumenical statement created in 1967 during the First Congress of the World Buddhist Sangha
Council (WBSC), where its founder Secretary-General, the late Venerable Pandita Pimbure
Sorata Thera, requested the Ven. Walpola Rahula to present a concise formula for the unification
of all the different Buddhist traditions. This text was then unanimously approved by the Council.


1 Text of the original document

2 Expansion of the formula

3 Other compilations of commonalities

4 See also

5 Notes

6 References

7 External links

Text of the original document

1. The Buddha is our only Master (teacher and guide)

2. We take refuge in the Buddha, the Dharma and the Sagha (th

3. We do not believe that this world is created and ruled by a Go

4. We consider that the purpose of life is to develop compassion

5. We accept the Four Noble Truths, namely duh kha, the arising

6. All conditioned things (samskra) are impermanent (anitya) a

7. We accept the thirty-seven qualities conducive to enlightenme

8. There are three ways of attaining bodhi or Enlightenment: na

9. We admit that in different countries there are differences rega

Expansion of the formula

Ven. Walpola Sri Rahula in 1981 [2] offered an alternative to the Nine-point formula above
restating it as follows:

1. Whatever our sects, denominations or systems, as Buddhists w

2. We all take refuge in the Triple Jewel: the Buddha, our Teache

3. Whether Theravda or Mahyna, we do not believe that this

4. Following the example of the Buddha, our Teacher, who is em

5. We accept the Four Noble Truths taught by the Buddha, name

of ethical conduct (sila), mental discipline (samadhi) and wisd

6. We accept the universal law of cause and effect taught in the P

7. We understand, according to the teaching of the Buddha, that

8. We accept the Thirty-seven Qualities conducive to Enlightenm

o Four Forms of Presence of Mindfulness (Pali: satipatt

o Four Right Efforts (Pali. sammappadhana; Skt. samya

o Four Bases of Supernatural Powers (Pali. iddhipada;

o Five Faculties (indriya: Pali. saddha, viriya, sati, sam

o Five Powers (bala, same five qualities as above);

o Seven Factors of Enlightenment (Pali. bojjhanga; Skt.

o Eight-fold Noble Path (Pali. ariyamagga; Skt. aryamar

9. There are three ways of attaining Bodhi or Enlightenment acc

says that those who follow the line of rvakayna (Vehicle of
10. We admit that in different countries there are differences with

Other compilations of commonalities

Other lists similar to Walpola Rahula's have been produced by others. Tan Swe Eng compiled the

Common Ground Between Theravada and Mahayana Buddhism

1. kyamuni Buddha is the original and historical founder of B

2. The Three Universal Seals, Four Noble Truths, Eight Fold Pa

3. Threefold training of Precepts, Meditation and Wisdom is uni

4. Organization of the Buddhist teachings / Dharma into three c

5. Mind over matter concept. Mind as the principal area of tami

For Oo Maung the similarities between the Theravada and Mahayana are found in:

the Four Noble Truths

the Noble Eightfold Path

the Paticca-samuppada (Dependent Origination)

Anicca, Dukkha, Anatta (Three marks of existenc

la, Samadhi, Panna (Threefold training)

the rejection of the concept of a Supreme God.

See also

World Buddhist Forum

World Fellowship of Buddhists


Phelps, Norm (2004). The Great Compassion: Buddhism and Animal Rights.
Lantern Books. p. 45. ISBN 1590560698.


Ven. Walpola Sri Rahula (December 17, 1981). "One Vehicle for Peace".
Proceedings: Third International Congress World Buddhist Sangha Council. Third
International Congress World Buddhist Sangha Council. Taiwan. pp. 3235.


Rahula, Walpola (1974). The Heritage of the Bhikkhu. NY: Grove Press; pp. 100, 137-8.

The Young Buddhist, Singapore : Buddha Yana Organization, 1982, p. 161 -163

External links

World Buddhist Sangha Council homepage

Comparative Study by Tan Swe Eng

Theravada vs Mahayana (Compiled by Oo Maung)


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Buddhist philosophical concepts

Comparative Buddhism

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