Bon as a form of Buddhism

Discussion of the fifth religious tradition of Tibet.
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Dharmasherab
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Bon as a form of Buddhism

Post by Dharmasherab » Tue Nov 21, 2017 2:23 pm

First of all let me start by rejoicing that Bon is accepted as form of Buddhism and getting more and more recognition in the Buddhist world. I wish I found this sub-forum earlier. I made a similar post in a under a different forum but since I assume I am more likely to get responses from Bonpos (Bon Buddhists) in this sub-forum I am going to make a modified version on my original post in here.

I keep hearing conflicting viewpoints as to whether Bon is a type of Buddhism or not. Some Bonpos say that Bon is a type of Buddhism while others say it is distinct from Buddhism. So I have some questions. But before I ask them I like to show an article from Wikipedia which outlines the basic points which are in common with Theravada and Mahayana (where the terms Mahayana encompasses all schools within Buddhism where the Bodhisattva path is compulsory including conventional Mahayana, Vajrayana and Dzogchen schools). The list is supposed to be representative of what is supposed to common to all forms of traditional Buddhism.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Basic_poi ... 1y%C4%81na

Also here is the Wikipedia article

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bon

So here goes the questions -

1. Does Bon include the 4 Noble Truths, the 8Fold Path, the 37 Qualities conducive to Enlightenment (Bodhipakkhiyadhamma) and Interdependent Origination and the 3 Refuges?

2. When Bonpos take refuge in Buddha, do they mean that they take refuge in only Buddha Tonpa Sherab or Buddha Shakyamuni or Both or all Buddhas that lived in the past as well as the Buddhas who will come in the future?

3. If there are those who do not consider Bon to be a form of Buddhism then is it because of the following reasons -
  • that Bon has Buddha Tonpa Sherab as its Buddha instead of Buddha Shakyamuni?
  • that Bon has its own set of scriptures which is distinct from Tibetan Buddhism?
  • because some Bonpos prefer not to be identified as Buddhists?
  • because Bon considers Buddhism to be a form of Bon?
4. In Buddhism taking refuge also includes not taking non-Buddhists as spiritual guides. Keeping this in mind can those who follow Buddhism (outside of Bon) take teachings/empowerments/initiations from Bon without violating refuge vows in Buddhism?

As for me personally I hope that Bon is a form of Buddhism and that I can take teachings/empowerments from Bon. I respect Bon equally to all other traditional forms of Buddhism. I respect the Bon monks and nuns on an equal level to Buddhist monks. I like to see Bon as a form of Buddhism and that Bon gets more and more support from the rest of the Buddhist World. Basically I see Bon as a form of Buddhism.

Despite this I thought it was best that I ask from different people as to what they thing and whether they could direct me to resources.

Thank you all!

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kalden yungdrung
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Re: Bon as a form of Buddhism

Post by kalden yungdrung » Tue Nov 21, 2017 4:16 pm

Dharmasherab wrote:
Tue Nov 21, 2017 2:23 pm


So here goes the questions -
1. Does Bon include the 4 Noble Truths, the 8Fold Path, the 37 Qualities conducive to Enlightenment (Bodhipakkhiyadhamma) and Interdependent Origination and the 3 Refuges?
Bön does not include the Buddha Dharma of Buddha Shakyamuni. But Bön has nevertheless many similarities with Indian Buddhism.
So Bön Sarma is that Tibetan Tradition which shares many similarities with Indian / Tibetan Buddhism.
Many of your questions have been already discussed to the point here, so we fall back in repeating..............
viewtopic.php?f=78&t=26657

2. When Bonpos take refuge in Buddha, do they mean that they take refuge in only Buddha Tonpa Sherab or Buddha Shakyamuni or Both or all Buddhas that lived in the past as well as the Buddhas who will come in the future?
When Bönpos take refuge they do that in the name of their Buddha Tönpa Shenrab Miwoche.


3. If there are those who do not consider Bon to be a form of Buddhism then is it because of the following reasons -
  • that Bon has Buddha Tonpa Sherab as its Buddha instead of Buddha Shakyamuni?
  • that Bon has its own set of scriptures which is distinct from Tibetan Buddhism?
  • because some Bonpos prefer not to be identified as Buddhists?
  • because Bon considers Buddhism to be a form of Bon?
Look here:
viewtopic.php?f=78&t=26657
4. In Buddhism taking refuge also includes not taking non-Buddhists as spiritual guides. Keeping this in mind can those who follow Buddhism (outside of Bon) take teachings/empowerments/initiations from Bon without violating refuge vows in Buddhism?
You can follow what you want, no problem. But you should not it mix up with other believes / Traditions etc.
If you follow Bön Dzogchen then you should take as the Adi Buddha Kuntu Zangpo and do Guru Yoga with the Zhang Zhung Masters etc. So not to mix it up that is ok, then we can follow what we want. Only if you follow Bön Sarma, then because it is already mixed up , you can integrate that easy with Tibetan Buddhism, because Guru Rinpoche is here venerated.

As for me personally I hope that Bon is a form of Buddhism and that I can take teachings/empowerments from Bon. I respect Bon equally to all other traditional forms of Buddhism. I respect the Bon monks and nuns on an equal level to Buddhist monks. I like to see Bon as a form of Buddhism and that Bon gets more and more support from the rest of the Buddhist World. Basically I see Bon as a form of Buddhism.
Bön is sure a form of Buddhism because it has an active Buddha which ahs similarities with the Nepalese Buddha Shakyamuni, but is not similar , the Lineage is different.
Then if you practice Bön Zhang Zhung Nyen Gyud, then one will see that all 10 Paramitas etc. are included into the practice.
Here like in other Dzogchen Traditions, Compassion and Wisdom are inherent of the Tathagatagarbha / Sugatagarbha.
So Buddhahood is the realizing of this Awareness and these are the BIG similarities which connects Bön and non Bön (Buddhist) Traditions.

Then Bön has

- Sutra
- Tantra
- Dzogchen

Also here many similarities, but like in Tantra , Bön has so its own deities and Masters.
ZZNG Dzogchen is the most original Bön Tradition and was never mixed up.


Mutsuk Marro
KY


Thank you all!
The best meditation is no meditation

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Dharmasherab
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Re: Bon as a form of Buddhism

Post by Dharmasherab » Wed Nov 22, 2017 11:00 am

Thank you kalden yungdrung for that explaination. I will have a look at the link to the thread which you provided in the post.

So far the more I speak to people the more I am convinced that Bon is a form of Buddhism and the happier I become.

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kalden yungdrung
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Re: Bon as a form of Buddhism

Post by kalden yungdrung » Wed Nov 22, 2017 4:08 pm

Dharmasherab wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 11:00 am
Thank you kalden yungdrung for that explaination. I will have a look at the link to the thread which you provided in the post.

So far the more I speak to people the more I am convinced that Bon is a form of Buddhism and the happier I become.

Tashi delek D,

Yes what is Tibetan Buddhism ?

It took a long time before Tibetan Buddhism was accepted as such in the Buddhist world of Theravada.
Tibetan Buddhism has incorporated many non Buddhist methods if we look deeper in certain Tibetan Tantras.
Then, there are also certain Bön elements, inside Tibetan Buddhism etc.

So if we agree that Buddhism can be more than Theravada and Mahayana Buddhism then you are right that Tibetan Buddhism is a certain way with, certain non Buddhist methods etc.

But for sure Bön has non Buddhist Sutras of Buddha Shakyamuni inside, except Madyamika, which was done in favor of the Gelug, because otherwise a Geshe degree was never obtained.
Again in Bön Sarma we can meet more Tibetan Buddhism from after 800. If you say that is then for me a certain form of Tibetan Buddhism then you are 108 % right.

So Buddhism and Bön have many similarities etc. but Bön has a different Buddha and different lineages and that makes Bön special in Tibet.

Both Tibetan Buddhism and Bön did not stem from Tibet.
Tibetan Buddhism is a mix and Bön CAN be a mix.
Bön can be not mixed and if we consider Tibetan Buddhism not mixed up then we get Bön.
And here we get the Bön Buddha who is never the Buddha Shakyamuni.
In Bön is Buddha Shakyamuni accepted, as one of the students of Buddha Tönpa Shenrab Miwoche.
According Bön, Buddha Shakyamuni got instructions from the Buddha Tönpa Shenrab to teach Dharma into this world.

That is all according to Bön teachings, therefore if you say/ state, that Bön is a form of Buddhism some Bönpos agree with you easy (your happiness) and some never would do so (your un-happiness ?).

Mutsuk Marro
KY.
Last edited by kalden yungdrung on Wed Nov 22, 2017 4:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Malcolm
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Re: Bon as a form of Buddhism

Post by Malcolm » Wed Nov 22, 2017 4:10 pm

kalden yungdrung wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 4:08 pm

In Bön is Buddha Shakyamuni accepted, as one of the students of Buddha Tönpa Shenrab Miwoche.
According Bön, Buddha Shakyamuni got instructions from the Buddha Tönpa Shenrab to teach Dharma into this world.
Liker I said, alternate universe with alternate history.
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kalden yungdrung
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Re: Bon as a form of Buddhism

Post by kalden yungdrung » Fri Nov 24, 2017 10:29 am

Malcolm wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 4:10 pm
kalden yungdrung wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 4:08 pm

In Bön is Buddha Shakyamuni accepted, as one of the students of Buddha Tönpa Shenrab Miwoche.
According Bön, Buddha Shakyamuni got instructions from the Buddha Tönpa Shenrab to teach Dharma into this world.
Liker I said, alternate universe with alternate history.

Tashi delek M,

Could you please decrypt your message here ?

Mutsuk marro
KY.
The best meditation is no meditation

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