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The Zen Studies Podcast

Mar 9, 2017

This is the first episode in my “Buddhist History and Seminal Texts” series. I discuss the historical and religious context for the beginnings of Buddhism in India in the 500s BCE. I give you a brief overview of the history of civilization in India, and a sense of the dominant religious traditions of northern India from around 2000 BCE through the time of the Buddha. Then I describe the period of social and economic changes starting around 800 BCE that apparently paved the way for new schools of religious thought and practice, including Buddhism.