A Note on the Term Theravada


  • Bhikkhu Analayo Center for Buddhist Studies, University of Hamburg & Dharma Drum Buddhist College, Taiwan




Pāli Canon, South-and Southeast Asian Buddhism, ‘Theravāda’


With the present article I study the trajectory of the term theravada from its earliest occurrence in the Pali canon to its present day usage as a designation of the form of Buddhism found in Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia. My presentation begins with the term theravada in the Pali discourses, followed by turning to the Pali commentaries and chronicles. Next I examine the role of the Pali canon in the Theravada tradition and the conception of Theravada as a monastic lineage, after which I discuss current usage and survey alternative terms.


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How to Cite

Analayo, B. (2014). A Note on the Term Theravada. Buddhist Studies Review, 30(2), 215–235. https://doi.org/10.1558/bsrv.v30i2.215