On incompetent monks and able urbane nuns in a buddhist monastic code

Journal of Indian Philosophy 38 (2):107-131 (2010)
Most modern scholars seem to assume that Buddhist monks in early India had a good knowledge of Buddhist doctrine and at least of basic Buddhist texts. But the compilers of the vinayas or monastic codes seem not to have shared this assumption. The examples presented here are drawn primarily from one vinaya , and show that the compilers put in place a whole series of rules to deal with situations in which monks were startlingly ignorant of both doctrine and text. One of these examples is particularly interesting for what it suggests about the linguistic sophistication of nuns, and another because it presents a case in which a nun is required to fill an important liturgical role in public and in the presence of monks.
Keywords Buddhist monasticism  Vinaya  Buddhist nuns  Textual knowledge
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DOI 10.1007/s10781-010-9085-9
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Shunzō Onoda (1992). Monastic Debate in Tibet: A Study on the History and Structures of Bsdus Grwa Logic. Arbeitskreis für Tibetische Und Buddhistische Studien Universität Wien.

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