This contribution argues that one’s Buddhist identity is not a monolithic singularity, but a layered construct, consisting of the acceptance of the Buddha-word (Buddhavacana) as one’s core Buddhist identity, one’s particular monastic school and code as a first layer around this Buddhist ‘nucleus,’ and philosophical interpretations of the Buddha-word as the outer layer of one’s Buddhist identity. These three layers are represented in the traditional three collections of Buddhist literature (tripiṭaka): Sūtra, Vinaya, and Abhidharma. The ‘canonical’ status of the Abhidharma collection is the least stable of these three. The ‘Abhidharmic’ layer is therefore the layer that enables ‘networking,’ as the acceptance of the Buddha-word and one’s monastic affiliation are beyond negotiation. It is to this intricate connection between identity formation, canonisation, and networking in the Indian and Chinese political spheres that the subsequent pages are devoted.