This research traces the origins of Indian Mahāyāna1, a new orientation rooted in early Buddhism. The essay draws from the earliest sūtras and argues that the new development was not antagonistic towards the previous tradition but built on it.
Brahmanism, Jainism and Buddhism are traditions indigenous to ancient India; while they share common origins, they developed distinct worldviews and methodologies. The purpose of this research is to explore their historical, semantic and doctrinal development and demonstrate links between their meditation systems. This second part of the series is centred around the exchange and divergence of the concept of liberation, and its corresponding beliefs and practices.
The Bhagavadgītā of the Mahābhārata is a post-Vedic text seeking to affirm Brahmanism. It achieves it through a revision of the religious and philosophical doctrines of its milieu. It is the first material to comprehensively promote worldly activity by adopting yoga—appropriated from ascetic-renunciatory settings. The modernised yogic methods and orientations, weaved into Vedic dharma, are the prime focus. This research examines their composition by relying on a selection of academic translations.