Buddhism

   Buddhism is an indigenous religion of a number of Russia’s ethnic groups and national minorities, including the Kalmyks, Tuvans, and Buryats. Nationwide, there are approximately 70,000 Buddhists in the Russian Federation. Nearly all of these follow the Lamaist school, which is associated with Tibetan Buddhism and part of the Mahayana branch of the religion, though immigrants from China and Vietnam practice Theravada Buddhism. A small number of ethnic Russians have also converted to Buddhism in recent years. There are Buddhist temples in Moscow and St. Petersburg, which serve various diasporic communities of Buddhists.
   The history of the faith in Russia dates back at least four centuries to when imperial expansion began to include areas in southern Siberia and the Russian Far East. In the 17th century, the Mongolic Kalmyks migrated to the lower Volga region, establishing the only Buddhist community on the European continent. Tsarist authorities were relatively tolerant of Buddhist inovertsy (non-Orthodox subjects), while the Soviets attempted to mold the faith and its leaders to fit the ideological needs of the regime. In post-Soviet Russia, Lamaist Buddhism (along with Orthodox Christianity, Islam, and Judaism) is recognized by the 1993 Constitution of the Russian Federation as a “native” religion, and is thus free from the restrictions placed on nonindigenous faiths such as Protestantism and Scientology. In the traditionally Buddhist regions of the Russian Federation, a spiritual revival has been under way since the late 1980s; this is particularly true in Kalmykiya where President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov has funded the building and renovation of temples. In Asiatic Russia, traditional forms of shamanism are often syncretisticly incorporated into the practice of Buddhism.
   The spiritual leader of Tibetan Buddhism, the Dalai Lama, has twice visited the faithful in Russia, once in the early 1990s and again in 2004, sparking criticism from China. The Ivolga Datsan, a monastery located in Buryatiya near Lake Baykal, is the most important Buddhist site in the Russian Federation.

Historical Dictionary of the Russian Federation. . 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Buddhism — • The religious, monastic system, founded c. 500 B.C. on the basis of pantheistic Brahminism Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Buddhism     Buddhism      …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Buddhism —    Buddhism is a term popularly applied to the many and varied schools of thought which grew and developed from the teachings of the Buddha in India more than 2,500 years ago. Its influence has spread throughout the world and it has been an… …   Encyclopedia of contemporary British culture

  • Buddhism — Bud dhism, n. The religion based upon the doctrine originally taught by the Hindu sage Gautama Siddartha, surnamed Buddha, the awakened or enlightened, in the sixth century b. c., and adopted as a religion by the greater part of the inhabitants… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Buddhism — 1801, from BUDDHA (Cf. Buddha) + ISM (Cf. ism) …   Etymology dictionary

  • Buddhism — ► NOUN ▪ a religion or philosophy, founded by Siddartha Gautama (Buddha; c.563 c.460 BC), which teaches that elimination of the self is the route to enlightenment. DERIVATIVES Buddhist noun & adjective Buddhistic adjective …   English terms dictionary

  • Buddhism — [bo͞o′diz΄əm, bood′iz΄əm] n. a religion and philosophic system of central and eastern Asia, founded in India in the 6th cent. B.C. by Buddha: it teaches that right thinking and self denial will enable the soul to reach Nirvana, a divine state of… …   English World dictionary

  • Buddhism — Buddh redirects here, for the Race Circuit, see Buddh International Circuit Standing Buddha. One of the earliest known representations of the Buddha, 1st 2nd century CE, Gandhara …   Wikipedia

  • Buddhism — Buddhist, n., adj. Buddhistic, Buddhistical, adj. Buddhistically, adv. /booh diz euhm, bood iz /, n. a religion, originated in India by Buddha (Gautama) and later spreading to China, Burma, Japan, Tibet, and parts of southeast Asia, holding that… …   Universalium

  • Buddhism — The religion founded in India in the 5th century BC by Siddhartha Gautama (usually 563–483 BC; an alternative date of death based on Chinese sources is 368 BC), the Buddha or enlightened one. Buddhism teaches salvation through escape from samsara …   Philosophy dictionary

  • Buddhism — A salvation religion, founded in north India in the fifth centuryBCE (the exact dates are the subject of scholarly controversy) by Siddhartha Gautama, known as the Buddha (meaning Enlightened One). Buddhists may be defined as those who revere the …   Dictionary of sociology

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.