This qualitative research is an analytical study of storehouse consciousness (ālayavijñāna) in Yogācāra Mahāyāna Buddhism. The research has three objectives: (1) To study the origin and development of storehouse consciousness concept; (2) to analyze the idea of storehouse consciousness in the light of Yogacāra school; and (3) To study the influence of Ālayavijñāna to other schools.
The findings show that the concept of storehouse consciousness points to something like basement of a house. It contains all kinds of qualifiable products of mind. This “basement” is a place in which impressionable karma habitually that leads one to all destinies is kept. Based on the teaching of Buddha, Yogācāra practitioners adopted and developed ālayavijñāna as a school of Mahāyāna Buddhism. In the light of new ideas, the concept was adapted to highlight all the basic features of mind required to nourish one’s mind to attain the Buddhahood. The concept of ālayavijñāna influences almost all of the other Mahāyāna Buddhist school in a practical way and also describes and guides the social practices and good behavior of people. One significant strategy that emerges from the study of storehouse consciousness is that people can, with mindful practice, actively reduce defilements that arise in daily life, so they can enjoy a better life now and hereafter. In general, this thesis successfully addresses the three objectives, and opens up a new angle of study on the concept of storehouse consciousness in Yogācāra tradition and on its influence to three schools of Mahāyāna Buddhism in this present practice. Finally, the thesis offers further suggestions for relevant researches.