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Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Thu May 10, 2018 3:15 am
by Josef
Malcolm wrote:
Thu May 10, 2018 1:58 am
Josef wrote:
Sun May 06, 2018 6:59 pm
This notion of explicit permission is something that seems to mostly apply to non-Tibetan practitioners.
If one was living in a valley in the Himalaya's, had received empowerment, instructions, and applied the practices diligently, there would be nobody questioning whether or not said individual could "teach" or transmit the practices they have a lineage connection to.

I find it extremely unlikely that the Mahasiddhas had some kind of certificate or explicit permission to benefit beings through offering them dharma. The notion is a bit silly.
Actually, they had to renew their teaching license every five years with the BRUB (Board of Really Uptight Buddhists).
Aw crud!
I forgot about the BRUB!

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Thu May 10, 2018 3:19 am
by javier.espinoza.t
fckw wrote:
Wed May 09, 2018 10:44 pm
javier.espinoza.t wrote:
Wed May 09, 2018 9:10 pm
afaik mahasiddhas were once buddhist monks (shravakas and/or boddhisattvas in training) and top scholars on dharma that arrived a point...
Nah, not really. They really had all sorts of social backgrounds, by far not all of them were learned. And a few ones of them - according to Buddhist sources - were actually non-Buddhists.
oh, true, i just saw a post of a YY instructor pointing that Humchenkara was shepherd before. my apollogies

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Thu May 10, 2018 8:58 am
by Sādhaka
The texts say that it is not possible to help sentient beings without the clear vision that comes with the Path of Seeing i.e. the First Bhumi.

Therefore the Path of Seeing would be one’s permission to start teaching; and there would be no mistaking the signs....

Not to say that ‘ordinary’ practitioners can’t give lung transmissions to other practitioners who have already received transmission, that is if the former have done the requisite retreat(s). But I’m talking about becoming an actual Teacher.

The only exception to this would be if your Teacher gives you permission to start teaching.

This is my understanding anyway.

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Thu May 10, 2018 10:10 am
by yagmort
Josef wrote:
Wed May 09, 2018 8:39 pm
...There were many large monastic institutions in India at the time of the Mahasiddhas...
what are those? i am only avare of 5: Nalanda, Vikramashila, Somapura, Odantapura and Jagaddala. that's from wikipedia. to my eyes i wouldn't call that "monastic establishment" in comparison to how it had developed in tibetan vajrayana, where the majority of accomplished masters have gone through rigorous monastic training first, perhaps excluding Shangpa to a certain degree. also, i was thinking they didn't teach tantric practices there, but that's just my uneducated assumptions based on what i've read about mahasiddhas. seems like all of them got their mahamudra introduction from yet another mahasiddhas and not from university teachers. i may of course be mistaken so any inputs are welcome.

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Thu May 10, 2018 3:49 pm
by Josef
yagmort wrote:
Thu May 10, 2018 10:10 am
Josef wrote:
Wed May 09, 2018 8:39 pm
...There were many large monastic institutions in India at the time of the Mahasiddhas...
what are those? i am only avare of 5: Nalanda, Vikramashila, Somapura, Odantapura and Jagaddala. that's from wikipedia.
That counts as many to me, and they were definitely "institutions".

Nalanda was a center for international intellectual exchange, and would have had a large residential community of practitioners. If Wikipiedia, as a publicly curated information website lists that many it would seem that there were even more.

Some of the namthars of Mahasiddhas, Virupa for example include references to tantric practice etc. while in a monastic setting.

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Thu May 10, 2018 11:36 pm
by Varis
fckw wrote:
Wed May 09, 2018 10:44 pm
And a few ones of them - according to Buddhist sources - were actually non-Buddhists.
AFAIK the non-Buddhist ones are not described as having actually attained Mahasiddhi.

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Fri May 11, 2018 10:08 pm
by fckw
Varis wrote:
Thu May 10, 2018 11:36 pm
fckw wrote:
Wed May 09, 2018 10:44 pm
And a few ones of them - according to Buddhist sources - were actually non-Buddhists.
AFAIK the non-Buddhist ones are not described as having actually attained Mahasiddhi.
Isn't this fascinating: Some Buddhist authors - we don't know much about them - writing about some mahasiddhas. Admitting that some of them actually were not Budhists. But then also stating that they did not attain mahasiddhi.

Think about it for a moment. It implies - obviously - that these stories must have been edited more than once by different authors. And that the later authors - obviously - were somehow indecisive. Should they simply delete them from the stories? Should they claim that they actually were Buddhists, although they clearly were not? Nope, they decided to go for another option. They claimed that, yes, they were mahasiddhas, but that they had not achieved ultimate mahasiddhi.

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Fri May 11, 2018 10:11 pm
by Aryjna
fckw wrote:
Fri May 11, 2018 10:08 pm
Varis wrote:
Thu May 10, 2018 11:36 pm
fckw wrote:
Wed May 09, 2018 10:44 pm
And a few ones of them - according to Buddhist sources - were actually non-Buddhists.
AFAIK the non-Buddhist ones are not described as having actually attained Mahasiddhi.
Isn't this fascinating: Some Buddhist authors - we don't know much about them - writing about some mahasiddhas. Admitting that some of them actually were not Budhists. But then also stating that they did not attain mahasiddhi.

Think about it for a moment. It implies - obviously - that these stories must have been edited more than once by different authors. And that the later authors - obviously - were somehow indecisive. Should they simply delete them from the stories? Should they claim that they actually were Buddhists, although they clearly were not? Nope, they decided to go for another option. They claimed that, yes, they were mahasiddhas, but that they had not achieved ultimate mahasiddhi.
I remember seeing quotations in this forum against this claim. At least according to some texts, all of them were Buddhist and also mahasiddhas. Some evidence should be given to support the claim that some of them were not Buddhist.

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Fri May 11, 2018 10:17 pm
by dzogchungpa
Aryjna wrote:
Fri May 11, 2018 10:11 pm
fckw wrote:
Fri May 11, 2018 10:08 pm
Varis wrote:
Thu May 10, 2018 11:36 pm


AFAIK the non-Buddhist ones are not described as having actually attained Mahasiddhi.
Isn't this fascinating: Some Buddhist authors - we don't know much about them - writing about some mahasiddhas. Admitting that some of them actually were not Budhists. But then also stating that they did not attain mahasiddhi.

Think about it for a moment. It implies - obviously - that these stories must have been edited more than once by different authors. And that the later authors - obviously - were somehow indecisive. Should they simply delete them from the stories? Should they claim that they actually were Buddhists, although they clearly were not? Nope, they decided to go for another option. They claimed that, yes, they were mahasiddhas, but that they had not achieved ultimate mahasiddhi.
I remember seeing quotations in this forum against this claim. At least according to some texts, all of them were Buddhist and also mahasiddhas. Some evidence should be given to support the claim that some of them were not Buddhist.

Well, Minapa's guru was Shiva ...

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Fri May 11, 2018 10:22 pm
by Aryjna
dzogchungpa wrote:
Fri May 11, 2018 10:17 pm
Aryjna wrote:
Fri May 11, 2018 10:11 pm
fckw wrote:
Fri May 11, 2018 10:08 pm

Isn't this fascinating: Some Buddhist authors - we don't know much about them - writing about some mahasiddhas. Admitting that some of them actually were not Budhists. But then also stating that they did not attain mahasiddhi.

Think about it for a moment. It implies - obviously - that these stories must have been edited more than once by different authors. And that the later authors - obviously - were somehow indecisive. Should they simply delete them from the stories? Should they claim that they actually were Buddhists, although they clearly were not? Nope, they decided to go for another option. They claimed that, yes, they were mahasiddhas, but that they had not achieved ultimate mahasiddhi.
I remember seeing quotations in this forum against this claim. At least according to some texts, all of them were Buddhist and also mahasiddhas. Some evidence should be given to support the claim that some of them were not Buddhist.

Well, Minapa's guru was Shiva ...
Doesn't really change anything as long as what he taught him was dharma and not something else.

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Fri May 11, 2018 10:45 pm
by dzogchungpa
Aryjna wrote:
Fri May 11, 2018 10:22 pm
dzogchungpa wrote:
Fri May 11, 2018 10:17 pm
Well, Minapa's guru was Shiva ...
Doesn't really change anything as long as what he taught him was dharma and not something else.

Good point. Some of Shiva's stuff is very well spoken.

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Sat May 12, 2018 12:38 am
by Sennin
I don't think anyone could just proclaim to be a paṇḍita though right? I read that was reserved for the Indians, and Tibetans were the lotsawas. :reading:

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Sat May 12, 2018 12:22 pm
by PSM
dzogchungpa wrote:
Fri May 11, 2018 10:17 pm
Aryjna wrote:
Fri May 11, 2018 10:11 pm
fckw wrote:
Fri May 11, 2018 10:08 pm

Isn't this fascinating: Some Buddhist authors - we don't know much about them - writing about some mahasiddhas. Admitting that some of them actually were not Budhists. But then also stating that they did not attain mahasiddhi.

Think about it for a moment. It implies - obviously - that these stories must have been edited more than once by different authors. And that the later authors - obviously - were somehow indecisive. Should they simply delete them from the stories? Should they claim that they actually were Buddhists, although they clearly were not? Nope, they decided to go for another option. They claimed that, yes, they were mahasiddhas, but that they had not achieved ultimate mahasiddhi.
I remember seeing quotations in this forum against this claim. At least according to some texts, all of them were Buddhist and also mahasiddhas. Some evidence should be given to support the claim that some of them were not Buddhist.

Well, Minapa's guru was Shiva ...
And I have it on very good authority Shiva is an emanation of Avalokiteshvara. As with anything in Indian religions, it gets pretty complicated when trying to draw strict demarcations.

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Sat May 12, 2018 5:09 pm
by dzogchungpa
PSM wrote:
Sat May 12, 2018 12:22 pm
dzogchungpa wrote:
Fri May 11, 2018 10:17 pm
Well, Minapa's guru was Shiva ...
And I have it on very good authority Shiva is an emanation of Avalokiteshvara. As with anything in Indian religions, it gets pretty complicated when trying to draw strict demarcations.

Indeed. Boom Shankar, y'all.

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Sat May 12, 2018 6:13 pm
by Varis
fckw wrote:
Fri May 11, 2018 10:08 pm
Isn't this fascinating: Some Buddhist authors - we don't know much about them - writing about some mahasiddhas. Admitting that some of them actually were not Budhists. But then also stating that they did not attain mahasiddhi.

Think about it for a moment. It implies - obviously - that these stories must have been edited more than once by different authors. And that the later authors - obviously - were somehow indecisive. Should they simply delete them from the stories? Should they claim that they actually were Buddhists, although they clearly were not? Nope, they decided to go for another option. They claimed that, yes, they were mahasiddhas, but that they had not achieved ultimate mahasiddhi.
The reason why a Shaivite can't attain Buddhahood through that path is answered in the sutras.
The better questions would be how these figures got grouped together, and why it was accepted by Buddhists. My personal suspicion is that they were included to convert tirthikas. I mean, imagine an interaction between Virupa and one of the non-Buddhist Mahasiddhas.

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Sat May 12, 2018 6:18 pm
by Varis
Sennin wrote:
Sat May 12, 2018 12:38 am
I don't think anyone could just proclaim to be a paṇḍita though right? I read that was reserved for the Indians, and Tibetans were the lotsawas. :reading:
Pandita is a title for someone who has learned the five sciences, it's not an exclusively Indian title, Sakya Pandita was Tibetan. A Lotsawa is a translator, not the same as a Pandita.

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Sat May 12, 2018 7:20 pm
by heart
Varis wrote:
Thu May 10, 2018 11:36 pm
fckw wrote:
Wed May 09, 2018 10:44 pm
And a few ones of them - according to Buddhist sources - were actually non-Buddhists.
AFAIK the non-Buddhist ones are not described as having actually attained Mahasiddhi.
Read any book on the 84 mahasiddhas. A few of them where not Buddhists but attained the same level of realisation.

/magnus

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Sat May 12, 2018 8:03 pm
by Sennin
Varis wrote:
Sat May 12, 2018 6:18 pm
Sennin wrote:
Sat May 12, 2018 12:38 am
I don't think anyone could just proclaim to be a paṇḍita though right? I read that was reserved for the Indians, and Tibetans were the lotsawas. :reading:
Pandita is a title for someone who has learned the five sciences, it's not an exclusively Indian title, Sakya Pandita was Tibetan. A Lotsawa is a translator, not the same as a Pandita.
Haha yes that's what I was getting at... :D

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Sun May 13, 2018 12:35 am
by Palzang Jangchub
Varis wrote:
Sat May 12, 2018 6:18 pm
Sennin wrote:
Sat May 12, 2018 12:38 am
I don't think anyone could just proclaim to be a paṇḍita though right? I read that was reserved for the Indians, and Tibetans were the lotsawas. :reading:
Pandita is a title for someone who has learned the five sciences, it's not an exclusively Indian title, Sakya Pandita was Tibetan. A Lotsawa is a translator, not the same as a Pandita.
Lotsa(wa) as a title is particularly used to refer to the realized Tibetans who went thru the vast undertaking of translating the Sutras and Tantras from Sanskrit into their native language. It even became part of their most commonly used names at times. Think Drokmi Lotsawa, Khye'u Chung Lotsawa, Marpa Lotsawa, etc.

Often this was done under the guidance of Indian panditas due to their extensive knowledge of Sanskrit, which is why you'll see the two terms used in conjunction. As Varis points out, pandita is not the Sanskrit for lotsawa, nor was it restricted to ethnic Indians.

Though there is some uncertainty about its origins, lotsawa is actually said to derive from Sanskrit lochava, itself a corruption of lokacakṣus, which literally means "eye(s) of the world." This can be used to refer to the Sun, so perhaps "one who illuminates the teachings" was the original intent there. I, however, always thought of it being somewhat like "citizen of the world"... a beautiful, poetic way of referring to those who are well-traveled, and broad-minded as a result.

At one point I thought that lotsawa was the general term for translator, even modern ones who are not themselves masters. Very few out there use it as a title however, probably due to the historical connotation. There are exceptions to this, of course, such as the translator for Khentrul Lodrö T'hayé Rinpoche. I've heard of others using the title being met with some derision and suspicion (though they were already noted for having odd/disturbing/harmful behavior).

Terms used nowadays are "kegyur (khen)" སྐད་སྒྱུར་(མཁན་) and "yikgyur(wa)" ཡིག་སྒྱུར་(བ་) or "yikgyur jepo/chepo" ཡིག་སྒྱུར་བྱེད་པོ་. As i was taught, སྐད་ ("ke") refers to spoken words, whereas ཡིག་ ("yik") is written words. This would make a kegyur an oral translator (interpreter) and a yikgyur a translator of texts.

See:
http://www.rigpawiki.org/index.php?title=Lotsawa
http://treasuryoflives.org/institution/Translators

Re: Did the 84 mahasiddhas authorize others to teach?

Posted: Sun May 13, 2018 4:11 am
by Sennin
Palzang Jangchub wrote:
Sun May 13, 2018 12:35 am
Varis wrote:
Sat May 12, 2018 6:18 pm
Sennin wrote:
Sat May 12, 2018 12:38 am
I don't think anyone could just proclaim to be a paṇḍita though right? I read that was reserved for the Indians, and Tibetans were the lotsawas. :reading:
Pandita is a title for someone who has learned the five sciences, it's not an exclusively Indian title, Sakya Pandita was Tibetan. A Lotsawa is a translator, not the same as a Pandita.
Lotsa(wa) as a title is particularly used to refer to the realized Tibetans who went thru the vast undertaking of translating the Sutras and Tantras from Sanskrit into their native language. It even became part of their most commonly used names at times. Think Drokmi Lotsawa, Khye'u Chung Lotsawa, Marpa Lotsawa, etc.

Often this was done under the guidance of Indian panditas due to their extensive knowledge of Sanskrit, which is why you'll see the two terms used in conjunction. As Varis points out, pandita is not the Sanskrit for lotsawa, nor was it restricted to ethnic Indians.
Right. I was saying (and failing horribly :lol: ) how mostly we hear of the Indians as the panditas, and the Tibetans were the lotsawas.