Crisis of Faith

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Konchog1
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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by Konchog1 » Sun May 28, 2017 3:28 am

Oh wow. Thank you everyone for the explosion of replies.

I’ve been thinking and the logic chain I’m clinging to is: Anuttarayoga is true because it is taught by my Gurus who are Buddhas. My Gurus are Buddhas because the Three Bodies doctrines is true, it is true because the Mahayana is true, the Mahayana is true because Bodhicitta is true, Bodhicitta is true because rebirth and karma are true.

Please criticize this theory.

Here we go my replies:
Virgo wrote:This idea is very wrong. For example, Manjushri stated that he appeared in other forms and taught the Shaivite and Vishnavaite mantras originally. This is because people did not have the ability to believe or perceive the whole truth. It takes much more merit to enter the Buddhist path to enlightenment.

The Medicine Buddha stated that the Buddhas appeared as Hindu gods to teach Ayurveda, etc.

Kevin
Interesting. Do you have the quotes for more context?
Norwegian wrote:You should read Wedemeyer's Making Sense of Tantric Buddhism. His book is very thorough.
I will.
Crazywisdom wrote:You don't need faith. Look at the superior concept. Buddha taught wisdom as a method and the methods are skills. And the skills are all lies that cut themselves down and leave open the door to pure perception, perception, not reality or truth but just a very clear eye. Think about this deeply and check if Shiva did that or not. Buddha is a pure relativist and Shiva is an absolutist. So of course Buddha would appear in the guise of whatever a person is into for the purpose of planting a skillful lie that breaks open the door to pure perception of the situation. Remember, we are talking about mirror-like wisdom. This is a mind that reflects what is really going on, no self-deception. Nothing more than this.
I do believe in the validity of Emptiness and Selflessness. But that just supports Buddhism being true, not Anuttarayoga.
heart wrote:Science is not always very helpful for practitioners because truth is a moving target in science. You have to keep that in mind while reading this kind of material. The question who copied who and what is the oldest and so on will change. There isn't really a religion called Hinduism anyway, it is actually a great number of different religions that have changed considerably over time. A few of the 84 Mahasiddhas actually practiced "Hindu" tantras but their storys have been faithfully transmitted in Tibet for a 1000 years, there is something there to have faith in.
/magnus
True. The Vedas were taught at Nalanda and Virupa (one example) was a master of them.

The copying and intertextuality doesn’t bother me. So the Shaivites copied our Tantras. So what. It’s their Tantras being first.
ClearblueSky wrote:Maybe. I think it touches on something deeper though, which is: "If __ is just a copy/cultural influence/myth, is __ still a valid path to enlightenment?"

Buddhist tantras seem to be influenced by other tantras/traditions. The objects deities hold reflect the time and culture the teaching was from (which could be because of perfect manifestations, or it could be because they are just from human imagination). There is not much historical proof that Buddha Shakyamuni existed. Many "relative" things from teachings are flat-out wrong, such as how the earth is composed. Omniscient mahasiddhas make metaphors to nature in dohas that we now know are totally inaccurate.

If all those things are the case, is the Dharma still a valid teaching? I think so, but since we can't really know until we're enlightened, I think it's a valid question.
So in other words, as other posters said, all external forms are mere skillful means pointing at the truths of Emptiness and Bodhichitta.

I like this thought.
tiagolps wrote:Does hindu tantra uphold the mahāyāna or bodhisattva yāna?
lol quite right. Trijang Rinpoche says the same thing.

https://www.lamayeshe.com/article/vario ... cts-tantra
Grigoris wrote:Another option is to examine these practices via the prism of the Four Dharma Seals, if they satisfy the requirements, then theoretically they are Dharma and so...
What about the passage in the Chakrasamvara Tantra teaching methods to sneak into harems and sleep with women? I’m not being sarcastic. I want an answer. How is that Buddhist?
Equanimity is the ground. Love is the moisture. Compassion is the seed. Bodhicitta is the result.

-Paraphrase of Khensur Rinpoche Lobsang Tsephel citing the Guhyasamaja Tantra

"All memories and thoughts are the union of emptiness and knowing, the Mind.
Without attachment, self-liberating, like a snake in a knot.
Through the qualities of meditating in that way,
Mental obscurations are purified and the dharmakaya is attained."

-Ra Lotsawa, All-pervading Melodious Drumbeats

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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by Crazywisdom » Sun May 28, 2017 3:50 am

It seems you miss the point of skillful means. Sutra does not provide the means to realize these things in one life. So if vajrayana is fake, then Buddha is into being slow. Maybe you are too. Really you have to approach this from the experience side. Scholars are stupid. Don't you be too. The methods work and they are real and true. They are the Buddha's vision and you can experience that yourself. It doesn't matter where the words in a book come from. There are many that are not in a book.
Vajra Killah Killallaya

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Malcolm
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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by Malcolm » Sun May 28, 2017 4:17 am

Konchog1 wrote:
Grigoris wrote:Another option is to examine these practices via the prism of the Four Dharma Seals, if they satisfy the requirements, then theoretically they are Dharma and so...
What about the passage in the Chakrasamvara Tantra teaching methods to sneak into harems and sleep with women? I’m not being sarcastic. I want an answer. How is that Buddhist?
Liberation through contact.
Buddhahood in This Life
འ༔ ཨ༔ ཧ༔ ཤ༔ ས༔ མ༔


[A]nything at all that is well spoken is the word of the Buddha.

-- Ārya-adhyāśaya-sañcodana-nāma-mahāyāna-sūtra

The different sūtras in accord with the emptiness
taught by the Sugata are definitive in meaning;
One can understand that all of those Dharmas in
which a sentient being, individual, or person are taught are provisional in meaning.

-- Samadhirāja Sūtra

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dzogchungpa
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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by dzogchungpa » Sun May 28, 2017 4:24 am

Malcolm wrote:
Konchog1 wrote:
Grigoris wrote:Another option is to examine these practices via the prism of the Four Dharma Seals, if they satisfy the requirements, then theoretically they are Dharma and so...
What about the passage in the Chakrasamvara Tantra teaching methods to sneak into harems and sleep with women? I’m not being sarcastic. I want an answer. How is that Buddhist?
Liberation through contact.
OK, now it all makes sense.
There is not only nothingness because there is always, and always can manifest. - Thinley Norbu Rinpoche

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Virgo
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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by Virgo » Sun May 28, 2017 4:33 am

Link posted this at the other thread...
Link wrote:In the Manjusriyamulakalpa, Manjushri states...

"I have taught this Mantra [of Siva] which together with the trident Mudra
destroys all demons, out of my desire to benefit living beings. Those living on the
earth will say that its ancient Kalpa, that I taught in former times, was taught
by Siva. [But] the various excellent extensive [Kalpas] in the Saiva Tantras are ´
in fact my teachings.
. . .
The extensive Kalpas that have been related in the Vaisnavas Tantras were
taught by Manjughosa for living beings who could only be trained by [this]
device.
. . .
All the extensive Kalpas taught in the Garuda Tantras were taught by me in
order to benefit living beings.
. . .
It was I that first taught, in this vast Kalpa, everything that the inhabitants
of earth without exception refer to as the teaching of Siva. It was only later ´
that others taught in the various texts [considered to be taught by him] the
Kalpamantras of the wise Siva Tumburu the Trader"
Kevin
ངོ་རང་ཐོག་ཏུ་སྤྲད། །
ཐག་གཅིག་ཐོག་ཏུ་བཅད། །
གདེང་གྲོལ་ཐོག་ཏུ་བཅའ། །

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Konchog1
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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by Konchog1 » Sun May 28, 2017 5:14 am

Virgo wrote:Link posted this at the other thread...
Link wrote:In the Manjusriyamulakalpa, Manjushri states...

"I have taught this Mantra [of Siva] which together with the trident Mudra
destroys all demons, out of my desire to benefit living beings. Those living on the
earth will say that its ancient Kalpa, that I taught in former times, was taught
by Siva. [But] the various excellent extensive [Kalpas] in the Saiva Tantras are ´
in fact my teachings.
. . .
The extensive Kalpas that have been related in the Vaisnavas Tantras were
taught by Manjughosa for living beings who could only be trained by [this]
device.
. . .
All the extensive Kalpas taught in the Garuda Tantras were taught by me in
order to benefit living beings.
. . .
It was I that first taught, in this vast Kalpa, everything that the inhabitants
of earth without exception refer to as the teaching of Siva. It was only later ´
that others taught in the various texts [considered to be taught by him] the
Kalpamantras of the wise Siva Tumburu the Trader"
Kevin
Excellent. Thank you.

So Vajradhara taught the Chakrasamvara Tantra in 500 BC. The Sivavite Tantras were then taught by Manjushri. Then in 1000 AD, Vajrayogini teaches the Chakrasamvara Tantra to Naropa and the tantra has chapters copied from the later Sivavite Tantras. That doesn't make sense.
Equanimity is the ground. Love is the moisture. Compassion is the seed. Bodhicitta is the result.

-Paraphrase of Khensur Rinpoche Lobsang Tsephel citing the Guhyasamaja Tantra

"All memories and thoughts are the union of emptiness and knowing, the Mind.
Without attachment, self-liberating, like a snake in a knot.
Through the qualities of meditating in that way,
Mental obscurations are purified and the dharmakaya is attained."

-Ra Lotsawa, All-pervading Melodious Drumbeats

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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by MiphamFan » Sun May 28, 2017 5:36 am

Look, if you want to find evidence that Buddhist niruttaratantras antedate Shaivite tantras, you will never find it. Mahayoga tantras however, do. Through linguistic cues, historical texts and so on, the tantras as preserved all date back to circa 6-7th century at the earliest -- there is no evidence of tantras before that period. (which is not to say "tantric" practices never existed before then -- most "classical" Sanskrit literature also dates from this period in general and reveals a long history of sophistication, almost a thousand years after Panini codified Sanskrit grammar, India just isn't conducive to preserving texts)

However, as I said above, based on Wedemeyer's work, it really is questionable if Buddhist tantras "copied" Shaivite tantras.

The Nyingma 9-yana model is probably a slightly better historical framework to view this than the 4-tantra sarma model.

Basically a simplified version of the timeline goes:
Sutras -> kriya tantra -> ubhaya tantra -> Yogatantra -> Mahayogatantra -> Yoginitantras -> Kalacakra

All Sanderson et al have demonstrated is that yoginitantras, already appearing quite late in history (10th century onwards), show a high degree of intertexuality with contemporary Shaivite tantras. However, a lot of the "transgressive" language of the tantras first appears in Mahayogatantra and THEN appears in Shaivite tantras.

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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by dzogchungpa » Sun May 28, 2017 5:44 am

MiphamFan wrote:However, a lot of the "transgressive" language of the tantras first appears in *Mahayogatantra and THEN appears in Shaivite tantras.
So you're saying the Hindus got the harem thing from the Buddhists?
There is not only nothingness because there is always, and always can manifest. - Thinley Norbu Rinpoche

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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by MiphamFan » Sun May 28, 2017 5:50 am

dzogchungpa wrote:
MiphamFan wrote:However, a lot of the "transgressive" language of the tantras first appears in *Mahayogatantra and THEN appears in Shaivite tantras.
So you're saying the Hindus got the harem thing from the Buddhists?
Well, IIRC, in some Sanskrit dramas of the period, some Buddhist monks and nuns were featured as pimps, which might have reflected some IRL behaviour.

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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by Grigoris » Sun May 28, 2017 6:59 am

Konchog1 wrote:What about the passage in the Chakrasamvara Tantra teaching methods to sneak into harems and sleep with women? I’m not being sarcastic. I want an answer. How is that Buddhist?
Do not conflate Buddhism (a set of concepts) with Dharma. There are some things in Buddhism that are Dharma and there is Dharma in some things that are not Buddhist. ;)
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
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Konchog1
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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by Konchog1 » Sun May 28, 2017 7:39 am

MiphamFan wrote:Look, if you want to find evidence that Buddhist niruttaratantras antedate Shaivite tantras, you will never find it. Mahayoga tantras however, do. Through linguistic cues, historical texts and so on, the tantras as preserved all date back to circa 6-7th century at the earliest -- there is no evidence of tantras before that period. (which is not to say "tantric" practices never existed before then -- most "classical" Sanskrit literature also dates from this period in general and reveals a long history of sophistication, almost a thousand years after Panini codified Sanskrit grammar, India just isn't conducive to preserving texts)

However, as I said above, based on Wedemeyer's work, it really is questionable if Buddhist tantras "copied" Shaivite tantras.

The Nyingma 9-yana model is probably a slightly better historical framework to view this than the 4-tantra sarma model.

Basically a simplified version of the timeline goes:
Sutras -> kriya tantra -> ubhaya tantra -> Yogatantra -> Mahayogatantra -> Yoginitantras -> Kalacakra

All Sanderson et al have demonstrated is that yoginitantras, already appearing quite late in history (10th century onwards), show a high degree of intertexuality with contemporary Shaivite tantras. However, a lot of the "transgressive" language of the tantras first appears in Mahayogatantra and THEN appears in Shaivite tantras.
This great stuff. Thank you for sharing. So, the Shaivites copied Mahayoga (or Manjushri taught Mahayoga to the Shaivites) then the Yoginitantras appeared with intertextuality with the Shaivite tantras. If you put it that way, it's like the Shaivite tantras are almost part of Buddhism.
Equanimity is the ground. Love is the moisture. Compassion is the seed. Bodhicitta is the result.

-Paraphrase of Khensur Rinpoche Lobsang Tsephel citing the Guhyasamaja Tantra

"All memories and thoughts are the union of emptiness and knowing, the Mind.
Without attachment, self-liberating, like a snake in a knot.
Through the qualities of meditating in that way,
Mental obscurations are purified and the dharmakaya is attained."

-Ra Lotsawa, All-pervading Melodious Drumbeats

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heart
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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by heart » Sun May 28, 2017 8:29 am

Konchog1 wrote:What about the passage in the Chakrasamvara Tantra teaching methods to sneak into harems and sleep with women? I’m not being sarcastic. I want an answer. How is that Buddhist?
Yes, that is a method in Vajrayana, if you are capable of practicing according to the third empowerment. There is a thousand year old discussion in the Vajrayana community if you just can visualise your partner or if you need to have an actual person to apply the practice of the third empowerment.

I also think you misunderstood me before; Science will continually change their idea about what is the truth, that is their actual method. But that isn't a very good way to develop stable faith in your practice. So, you need to find a faith that is reasonable and stable and that can accept the constant change in the scientific community if you feel you need to embrace both.
As an example of that you can for example read this: http://www.johnmakransky.org/downloads/ ... fering.pdf

/magnus
"We are all here to help each other go through this thing, whatever it is."
~Kurt Vonnegut

"The principal practice is Guruyoga. But we need to understand that any secondary practice combined with Guruyoga becomes a principal practice." ChNNR (Teachings on Thun and Ganapuja)

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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by Konchog1 » Sun May 28, 2017 8:48 am

heart wrote:
Konchog1 wrote:What about the passage in the Chakrasamvara Tantra teaching methods to sneak into harems and sleep with women? I’m not being sarcastic. I want an answer. How is that Buddhist?
Yes, that is a method in Vajrayana, if you are capable of practicing according to the third empowerment. There is a thousand year old discussion in the Vajrayana community if you just can visualise your partner or if you need to have an actual person to apply the practice of the third empowerment.

I also think you misunderstood me before; Science will continually change their idea about what is the truth, that is their actual method. But that isn't a very good way to develop stable faith in your practice. So, you need to find a faith that is reasonable and stable and that can accept the constant change in the scientific community if you feel you need to embrace both.
As an example of that you can for example read this: http://www.johnmakransky.org/downloads/ ... fering.pdf

/magnus
Yes but they're another's wives
Equanimity is the ground. Love is the moisture. Compassion is the seed. Bodhicitta is the result.

-Paraphrase of Khensur Rinpoche Lobsang Tsephel citing the Guhyasamaja Tantra

"All memories and thoughts are the union of emptiness and knowing, the Mind.
Without attachment, self-liberating, like a snake in a knot.
Through the qualities of meditating in that way,
Mental obscurations are purified and the dharmakaya is attained."

-Ra Lotsawa, All-pervading Melodious Drumbeats

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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by Anonymous X » Sun May 28, 2017 10:13 am

Malcolm wrote:
Konchog1 wrote:
Grigoris wrote:Another option is to examine these practices via the prism of the Four Dharma Seals, if they satisfy the requirements, then theoretically they are Dharma and so...
What about the passage in the Chakrasamvara Tantra teaching methods to sneak into harems and sleep with women? I’m not being sarcastic. I want an answer. How is that Buddhist?
Liberation through contact.
lol.

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heart
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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by heart » Sun May 28, 2017 2:16 pm

Konchog1 wrote:
heart wrote:
Konchog1 wrote:What about the passage in the Chakrasamvara Tantra teaching methods to sneak into harems and sleep with women? I’m not being sarcastic. I want an answer. How is that Buddhist?
Yes, that is a method in Vajrayana, if you are capable of practicing according to the third empowerment. There is a thousand year old discussion in the Vajrayana community if you just can visualise your partner or if you need to have an actual person to apply the practice of the third empowerment.

I also think you misunderstood me before; Science will continually change their idea about what is the truth, that is their actual method. But that isn't a very good way to develop stable faith in your practice. So, you need to find a faith that is reasonable and stable and that can accept the constant change in the scientific community if you feel you need to embrace both.
As an example of that you can for example read this: http://www.johnmakransky.org/downloads/ ... fering.pdf

/magnus
Yes but they're another's wives
I think harem is something from the Muslim part of the world, maybe it is a bad translation of a brothel? It makes more sense. If not then I think you have to consider that likeliest outcome of sneaking in to one (or several) of someone else wives house in the night is that you end up beaten black and blue or worse.

/magnus
"We are all here to help each other go through this thing, whatever it is."
~Kurt Vonnegut

"The principal practice is Guruyoga. But we need to understand that any secondary practice combined with Guruyoga becomes a principal practice." ChNNR (Teachings on Thun and Ganapuja)

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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by Lobsang Chojor » Sun May 28, 2017 2:36 pm

heart wrote:
Konchog1 wrote:Yes but they're another's wives
I think harem is something from the Muslim part of the world, maybe it is a bad translation of a brothel? It makes more sense. If not then I think you have to consider that likeliest outcome of sneaking in to one (or several) of someone else wives house in the night is that you end up beaten black and blue or worse.

/magnus
A harem is a dwelling or room for women, not just a a man's multiple wives. A harem may house a man's wife—or wives and concubines, as in royal harems of the past—their pre-pubescent male children, unmarried daughters, female domestic workers, and other unmarried female relatives.

So I'd say it could mean unmarried daughters more than wives. I'm not sure what the tantras say about consorts, although IIRC Malcolm has previously said that they should be 16 and a virgin.
ༀ་ཨ་ར་པ་ཙ་ན་དྷཱི༔ Oṃ A Ra Pa Ca Na Dhīḥ

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dzogchungpa
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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by dzogchungpa » Sun May 28, 2017 3:47 pm

MiphamFan wrote:
dzogchungpa wrote:
MiphamFan wrote:However, a lot of the "transgressive" language of the tantras first appears in *Mahayogatantra and THEN appears in Shaivite tantras.
So you're saying the Hindus got the harem thing from the Buddhists?
Well, IIRC, in some Sanskrit dramas of the period, some Buddhist monks and nuns were featured as pimps, which might have reflected some IRL behaviour.
Well, I don't really mind that kind of thing.

It does sound like those armor mantras are hot stuff though. For example, from Gray's translation:
He whom one touches with an armor-enchanted hand will be immobilized as if impaled. Even the thirty [gods] will not be able to move him. Should one repeat the mantra and strike him with one's foot he will be released. Forming a thrice-enchanted drop with one's own blood or semen, all those with whom one speaks, whom one sees, or who see [oneself], will have their blood drained. Everyone will come down with fever in whichever house one repeats it one thousand times filled with ferocity. If one sprinkles water enchanted five times, they will recover.

One will steal the speech of him at whose face one gazes, repeating [the mantra]...
There is not only nothingness because there is always, and always can manifest. - Thinley Norbu Rinpoche

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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by Jeff » Mon May 29, 2017 2:07 pm

Konchog1 wrote:I'm been reading:

http://www.sutrajournal.com/the-tantric ... her-wallis
http://www.alexissanderson.com/uploads/ ... va_age.pdf

It says that half of the Cakrasamvara tantra was copied from an earlier Shivite tantra with some Buddhist language added.

Furthermore, many Anuttarayoga rituals and concepts first appear in Shivite tantras.

So what's the explanation? Doesn't this mean that Anuttarayoga is not from the Buddha and not a path to Enlightenment? Just a copy of the Hindus?

Help.
Thank you for raising this very interesting and thought provoking topic. To me, there is practice and then there is view that the practice is interlaid into. If something works, it works. But, ultimately view will define the potential outcome of the practice.

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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by Konchog1 » Sat Jun 03, 2017 6:25 am

So I'm reading Wedemeyer, it's interesting so far. But I would like a discussion on this passage from Sonam Tsemo's General Presentation of the Tantras paraphrasing one of the Tantras (pg. 89 in Wedemeyer's):
[The Chakrasamvara Tantra] has existed since beginningless time; it was around before Shakyamuni.
So:

1. The Chakrasamvara is eternal
2. The Chakrasamvara is the transformation and conquest of the Shaivite Tantras and their deities

Therefore, the Shaivite Tantras must also be eternal.
Equanimity is the ground. Love is the moisture. Compassion is the seed. Bodhicitta is the result.

-Paraphrase of Khensur Rinpoche Lobsang Tsephel citing the Guhyasamaja Tantra

"All memories and thoughts are the union of emptiness and knowing, the Mind.
Without attachment, self-liberating, like a snake in a knot.
Through the qualities of meditating in that way,
Mental obscurations are purified and the dharmakaya is attained."

-Ra Lotsawa, All-pervading Melodious Drumbeats

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heart
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Re: Crisis of Faith

Post by heart » Sat Jun 03, 2017 8:17 am

Konchog1 wrote:So I'm reading Wedemeyer, it's interesting so far. But I would like a discussion on this passage from Sonam Tsemo's General Presentation of the Tantras paraphrasing one of the Tantras (pg. 89 in Wedemeyer's):
[The Chakrasamvara Tantra] has existed since beginningless time; it was around before Shakyamuni.
So:

1. The Chakrasamvara is eternal
2. The Chakrasamvara is the transformation and conquest of the Shaivite Tantras and their deities

Therefore, the Shaivite Tantras must also be eternal.
No, you are mixing up science with faith, it never ends well. The present editions of Chakrasamvara Tantra, with the parts taken from the Shaivaite Tantras, might not be exactly the same as as the Chakrasamvara Tantra from beginningless times. Different editions do exist even today. It might be that only short sections of the present Chakrasamvara Tantra corresponds with the beginningless Chakrasamvara Tantra.

If you want to practice Tantra you need to loosen up a little.

/magnus
"We are all here to help each other go through this thing, whatever it is."
~Kurt Vonnegut

"The principal practice is Guruyoga. But we need to understand that any secondary practice combined with Guruyoga becomes a principal practice." ChNNR (Teachings on Thun and Ganapuja)

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