Vajrayana Buddhism (Devanagari: बज्रयान) is also known as Tantric Buddhism, Tantrayāna, Mantrayana, Mantranaya, Secret Mantra, Esoteric Buddhism and the Diamond Vehicle. These terms are not regarded as equivalent.
Vajrayana is as an extension of Mahayana Buddhism since it differs in its practices, rather than its philosophy. The Mahayana has two practice paths: the Sutrayana method of perfecting good qualities and the Vajrayāna method of taking the intended outcome of Buddhahood as the path. The Vajrayana requires mystical experience in order to experience Buddha-nature prior to full enlightenment. In order to transmit these experiences, a body of esoteric knowledge has been accumulated by Buddhist tantric yogis and is passed via lineages of transmission. In order to access this knowledge, the practitioner requires initiation from a skilled spiritual teacher or guru.
The Vajrayana is often viewed as the third major Yana (or “vehicle”) of Buddhism, alongside the Theravada and Mahayana. According to this view, there were three “turnings of the wheel of dharma”. Continue reading
Ten Signs of the Superior Person
by Tibetan Master Milarepa
1. To have little pride and envy is the sign of the superior person.
2. To have few desires and satisfaction with simple things is the sign of the superior person.
3. To be lacking in hypocrisy and deceit is the sign of the superior person.
4. To regulate one’s conduct in accordance with the law of cause and effect as carefully as one would guard the pupils of one’s eyes is the sign of the superior person.
5. To be faithful in one’s engagement and obligations is the sign of the superior person. Continue reading
Early doctrines regarding the chakras
The idea of the subtle vital force (prana) and the channels along which it flows (nadis) appear in the earliest Upanishads (7th-8th century b.c.e.).
The heart was said to be the centre of the 72,000 nadis or subtle channels, and the place into which the senses are withdrawn during sleep. As with many ancient civilisations (e.g. Egypt, Homeric Greece), the heart was also considered the seat of waking consciousness.
But it was only in the later Upanishads – the earlier of which were composed somewhere between the 2nd century b.c.e. and the 2nd century c.e. – reference is first made to basic Tantric concepts such as chakras, mantras, and so on.
The Brahma-Upanishad mentions the four “places” occupied by the purusha (soul): the navel, heart, throat, and head. Following common tradition, each place is characterised by a particular state of consciousness: the navel (or the eye) waking consciousness, the heart dreamless sleep, the throat dreaming, and the head the “fourth” or transcendent state. Continue reading
By Alan Koo
This is the general term for the “things”, noumenal or phenomenal. In Buddhism, there are ten states of existence, which are also called Ten Dharma Realms. Each Dharma realm has its own characteristics, and its existence is attributed to the retribution of the beings. These ten realms do not appear to be discrete in their forms, as their existence is virtually determined by the state of mind. Therefore, it is important to note that the ten Dharma realms are not beyond a single thought. Continue reading
Merit decides success in this life. Some have vast merits and things come to them easily. One needs to prepare so to have as much merit out of this lecture as possible. Merit in time is irrelevant. Motivation and dedication decide the accumulation of merit.
The way of the Bodhisattva needs the highest motivation. Which is to free all sentient beings from their suffering.
Bridging. The Bodhisattva text is beneficial to everyone. Buddhist or not. Whether one beliefs in the afterlife or not. The Bodhisattva Shantideva enables enlightenment. The points are summarized in the text.
Chapter 1 – The Benefit of the Spirit of Awakening Continue reading
It is important to cultivate our minds through study and practice. To know what state of mind to cultivate, and what state of mind to abandon. We have to realize that our current life is short. Our future lives will be much longer, but we have to cultivate our minds now.
(The six paramitas = perfections.)
At the end of this life the body will be abandoned, but the Self will continue. So, to know that after this life we will continue with this mind, it is important to cultivate a stable mind. We need to seek lasting happiness – stable happiness, not temporary pleasures.
To strive for the benefit of others, one benefits automatically too. Our own minds are affected, even if no one else actually benefits. To wish all sentient beings and Self, full enlightenment, is to lead to lasting enlightenment. Continue reading
Tummo (Tibetan: gtum-mo; Sanskrit: caṇḍālī) is a form of Yoga, found in the Six Yogas of Naropa, Lamdre, Kalachakra and Anuyoga teachings of Tibetan Vajrayana. Tummo originally derives from Indian Vajrayana tradition, including the instruction of the Mahasiddha Krishnacarya and the Hevajra Tantra. The purpose of tummo is to gain control over body processes during the completion stage of ‘highest yoga tantra’ (Anuttarayoga Tantra) or Anuyoga.
Tummo is a Tibetan word, literally meaning fierce [woman]. Tummo is a Tibetan word for inner fire. Tummo may also be rendered in English approximating its phonemic enunciation as ‘Dumo’. Continue reading