Next Article in Journal
The Mosque as an Educational Space: Muslim Women and Religious Authority in 21st-Century Spain
Next Article in Special Issue
Monastic Meat: The Question of Meat Eating and Vegetarianism in Tibetan Buddhist Monastic Guidelines (bca’ yig)
Previous Article in Journal
“‘You Shall Love the Alien as Yourself’: Hope, Hospitality, and Love of the Stranger in the Teachings of Jesus”
Previous Article in Special Issue
For the Love of Dogs: Finding Compassion in a Time of Famine in Pali Buddhist Stories
Article Menu
Issue 3 (March) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Religions 2019, 10(3), 221; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel10030221

The Heretical, Heterodox Howl: Jackals in Pāli Buddhist Literature

Department of Religion, Dartmouth College, HB6036, Hanover, NH 03755, USA
Received: 9 March 2019 / Revised: 17 March 2019 / Accepted: 20 March 2019 / Published: 22 March 2019
  |  
PDF [262 KB, uploaded 22 March 2019]

Abstract

Buddhist literature in Pāli presents a world that is rich in animal imagery, with some animals carrying largely positive associations and other animals seen in a consistently negative light. Among the many species that populate the Pāli imaginaire, the jackal bears a particular status as a much-maligned beast. Jackals are depicted in Pāli literature as lowly, inferior, greedy, and cunning creatures. The jackal, as a natural scavenger, exists on the periphery of both human and animal society and is commonly associated with carrion, human corpses, impurity, and death. In this paper, I am interested in the use of the jackal as an image for both heresy and heterodoxy—that is, the jackal’s consistent association with heretical Buddhist figures, such as Devadatta, and with heterodox teachers, such as the leaders of competing samaṇa movements. Why was the jackal such an appropriate animal to stand for those who hold the wrong views? And how does association with such an animal sometimes result in a particularly nefarious sort of dehumanization that goes against the teachings of Buddhism? View Full-Text
Keywords: Buddhism; animals; jackal; heresy; heterodoxy Buddhism; animals; jackal; heresy; heterodoxy
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
SciFeed

Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Ohnuma, R. The Heretical, Heterodox Howl: Jackals in Pāli Buddhist Literature. Religions 2019, 10, 221.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Religions EISSN 2077-1444 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert Logo copyright Steve Bridenbaugh/UUA
Back to Top