Before starting it will be necessary to make it clear what is meant by Buddhism in this article. As with other religions, Buddhism has a long history during which it has developed and evolved, branched into divergent schools and sects, and been interpreted in various ways by different philosophers, reformers and saints. And as with other religions it is not always easy to get agreement by Buddhists on every issue. However, Buddhism started with the experience of a particular individual, Siddhattha Gotama, and at a particular time in history, the 5th/ 4th century BCE. Without going into the complexities of the issues, this article takes the position that the earliest and therefore the most authentic account of the Buddha and his teachings is contained in the Pali Tipitaka, the huge body of literature now considered canonical by the Theravada school of Buddhism. While this article deals mainly with homosexuality it will also make some references to related states, gay adoption, transgenderism, etc.
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