Books for beginner Gelug students

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smcj
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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by smcj » Wed May 03, 2017 12:35 pm

The American Constitution is well worth studying.
The part about allowing slavery was a mistake.
Keep that in mind as you study it.
Last edited by smcj on Wed May 03, 2017 12:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Lobsang Chojor
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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Lobsang Chojor » Wed May 03, 2017 12:38 pm

Ayu wrote:Okay, you recommend this and Lama Zopa recommends reading the Pabonka book. :shrug:
I think Karma's point is that Lam Rim Chenmo is the most important to read, Lama Zopa Rinpoche says this regularly.
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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Ayu » Wed May 03, 2017 12:54 pm

Lobsang Chojor wrote:
Ayu wrote:Okay, you recommend this and Lama Zopa recommends reading the Pabonka book. :shrug:
I think Karma's point is that Lam Rim Chenmo is the most important to read, Lama Zopa Rinpoche says this regularly.
I didn't argue that, but I think it is not good to condemn Pabonka's work outright.

Anyhow, both books have a huge volume and some beginners could be discouraged, because it is no stuff for reading quickly. Normally there are longterm courses about Lam rim. It is not recommended for quick superficial reading but for studying deeply.
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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Karma_Yeshe » Wed May 03, 2017 12:58 pm

Ayu wrote: Okay, you recommend this and Lama Zopa recommends reading the Pabonka book. :shrug: Who is the authority here?
Maybe you should mention that Gelug is not your lineage.
Yes, Gelug is not my lineage. That is why I won't recommend Pabonkapha. This is not about authority, it is about history.

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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Jeff H » Wed May 03, 2017 4:06 pm

:namaste:
Ayu wrote:
Lobsang Chojor wrote:
Ayu wrote:Okay, you recommend this and Lama Zopa recommends reading the Pabonka book. :shrug:
I think Karma's point is that Lam Rim Chenmo is the most important to read, Lama Zopa Rinpoche says this regularly.
I didn't argue that, but I think it is not good to condemn Pabonka's work outright.

Anyhow, both books have a huge volume and some beginners could be discouraged, because it is no stuff for reading quickly. Normally there are longterm courses about Lam rim. It is not recommended for quick superficial reading but for studying deeply.
Personally, I think this is more to the point. With 10 years of Theravadin under his belt, Stiphen may well be ready for Pabongkha and for Tsongkhapa's Great Treatise, but I wouldn't classify either as a starting place for lam rim.

Indestructible Truth is an excellent introduction and overview to Tibetan Buddhism in general, and the non-Gelug focus is a benefit before getting heavily into the Gelug lam rim.

After that, Geshe Tashi Tsering's Foundations of Buddhist Thought series is really an extremely good starting place -- foundational, one might say. They are best taken in order (Four Noble Truths; Two Truths; Buddhist Psychology; Bodhicitta; Emptiness; and Tantra). Also, even though Geshe-la does not offer those classes at the Jamyang branches, the 2-year online course is available to anyone and very much worth the modest cost.

After finishing the foundational work, Geshe Tashi also offers a 2-1/2 year online course in the Great Treatisee. Foundations of Buddhist Thought is (appropriately, in my mind) a prerequisite for the Lam Rim Chenmo course. Together those two courses will provide a very solid, well structured grounding in Gelug.
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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Lobsang Chojor » Wed May 03, 2017 4:54 pm

Ayu wrote:I didn't argue that, but I think it is not good to condemn Pabonka's work outright.

Anyhow, both books have a huge volume and some beginners could be discouraged, because it is no stuff for reading quickly. Normally there are longterm courses about Lam rim. It is not recommended for quick superficial reading but for studying deeply.
Yes sorry, I myself misunderstood what you meant. Personally​ I found Pabongkha's work very useful in understanding some of the more subtle points and of course he details the visualisations
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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Fortyeightvows » Wed May 03, 2017 7:25 pm

One post above has already went against tos.
Let's not do that.

But aside from that is that Pabongka didn't always speak fondly of termas.
And in way it makes sense...
I don't know the day and age he lived. but finding texts under rocks?
Or worshiping deitys from someone's dreams?... that's kind of how the termas sounded to me when I first heard of it. I'm sure I'm not alone in this.

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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Nicholas Weeks » Wed May 03, 2017 8:38 pm

Stiphan wrote:Hello friends,

Which books should I buy and read first as a newcomer to Gelug and Tibetan Buddhism?

Thank you!
Try The Path to Enlightenment (tr. by Glenn Mullin) which has the Dalai Lama commenting on two of the great stages of the path texts. One is by the Third Dalai Lama, where he comments on Je Tsongkhapa's small Lam Rim.

Also look for Je Tsongkhapa's Three Principles of the Path, a tiny work with many good commentaries out there.
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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Brunelleschi » Wed May 03, 2017 9:19 pm

Karma_Yeshe wrote:
Ayu wrote: Okay, you recommend this and Lama Zopa recommends reading the Pabonka book. :shrug: Who is the authority here?
Maybe you should mention that Gelug is not your lineage.
Yes, Gelug is not my lineage. That is why I won't recommend Pabonkapha. This is not about authority, it is about history.
Again, this is a weird sort of infatuation and appropriation (CA) of Tibetan culture. You sound like an Armenian talking about the genocide in Turkey or something. Stop living in the past.

Futhermore, have you even read Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand?

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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Karma_Yeshe » Wed May 03, 2017 10:35 pm

Brunelleschi wrote: Again, this is a weird sort of infatuation and appropriation (CA) of Tibetan culture. You sound like an Armenian talking about the genocide in Turkey or something. Stop living in the past.

Futhermore, have you even read Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand?
Tell that to an Armenian who's family never got any compensation money. And yes, I've read "Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand". It has many wrong statements about Dzogchen in it.


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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Mantrik » Wed May 03, 2017 10:53 pm

Of all the Lam Rim intros Pabongka's is the one I've noticed most Gelugs I've met recommend. An eminent Lharampa Geshe I know teaches from it, and is well aware how misguided Pabongka was in other respects.
I trust the judgement of Gelugs trained as teachers more than those from other schools on a web forum. ;)

People may dislike the Gelug teachings for one reason or another. The point is that someone has to be introduced to them to know what they are. That was the brief. I rate Lam Rim as a very sound basis for a cycle of meditations.
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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Brunelleschi » Thu May 04, 2017 6:01 am

Karma_Yeshe wrote:
Brunelleschi wrote: Again, this is a weird sort of infatuation and appropriation (CA) of Tibetan culture. You sound like an Armenian talking about the genocide in Turkey or something. Stop living in the past.

Futhermore, have you even read Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand?
Tell that to an Armenian who's family never got any compensation money. And yes, I've read "Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand". It has many wrong statements about Dzogchen in it.
Right, now you're just distorting my words, trying to make it sound like I attacked Armenians. This is false, and basically constitutes lying from your part. My point is the opposite. An Armenian has every right in the world to be upset about those events, however, you're the one appropriating Tibetan culture. You were never a part of Tibetan culture, yet you're acting like it's a personal affront.

About the book, since you fail to provide any quotations further debate is meaningless.

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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Stiphan » Thu Aug 24, 2017 5:53 pm

I just bought The Great Treatise on the Stages of the Path to Enlightenment Lam Rim Chen Mo - all three volumes, Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand, and the Four Noble Truths by Geshe Tashi Tsering.

What order should I read them in? First the commentary or not?

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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Nicholas Weeks » Thu Aug 24, 2017 6:47 pm

Stiphan wrote:I just bought The Great Treatise on the Stages of the Path to Enlightenment Lam Rim Chen Mo - all three volumes, Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand, and the Four Noble Truths by Geshe Tashi Tsering.

What order should I read them in? First the commentary or not?
The Four Noble Truths first.

Although you are well stocked with fine and fat texts, I would also suggest not being too sectarian in choosing a lineage. Tibetans are no longer as fond of sectarianism since losing their country to Chinese conquest.

Consider one more good book by our present Dalai Lama, that covers the entire range of Buddhism:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21412498-buddhism
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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Stiphan » Thu Aug 24, 2017 8:10 pm

Thanks, bought all six books from the series "The Foundations of Buddhist Thought". Also bought the Dalai Lama book you recommended.

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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Mantrik » Thu Aug 24, 2017 8:29 pm

I know a Lharampa Geshe, a senior monk in Drepung, and whilst he recognises Pabongka's failings, he also teaches from 'Liberation In The Palm of Your Hand' as it is the best work of its type.
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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Lobsang Chojor » Thu Aug 24, 2017 8:33 pm

Mantrik wrote:I know a Lharampa Geshe, a senior monk in Drepung, and whilst he recognises Pabongka's failings, he also teaches from 'Liberation In The Palm of Your Hand' as it is the best work of its type.
I've found this is the prevailing view among gelugpas, even HHDL has expressed this view.
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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Bristollad » Sun Aug 27, 2017 10:34 am

When I attended teachings from Lama Zopa a few years ago, he gave Pabongka's later intolerance as an example of the harm that wrong reliance could have even on those with a good understanding.

I remember the Essence of Refined Gold as being very inspiring - HH's commentary to a text by the 3rd Dalai Lama. Doesn't seem to be available in print now though.

https://www.jangchuplamrim.org/jangchup ... s-english/ details where various Lam Rim texts are available.

But I heartedly recommend Geshe Tashi's Foundation books (and the course too!). Also, there is a wealth of material available from Dr Alex Berzin on his website - https://studybuddhism.com/

I second Nicholas' choice of One Teacher, Many Traditions too as great book - though maybe not as an introduction to the Gelug school.

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Re: Books for beginner Gelug students

Post by Nicholas Weeks » Sat Nov 11, 2017 2:20 am

One of the first Geluk focused books, still a classic and in print: Door of Liberation compiled by Geshe Wangyal.
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