The World of Tibetan Buddhism: An Overview of Its Philosophy and Practice
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With characteristic humility, His Holiness the Dalai Lama begins this landmark survey of the entire Buddhist path by saying, "I think an overview of Tibetan Buddhism for the purpose of providing a comprehensive framework of the path may prove helpful in deepening your understanding and practice." In this book, the Dalai Lama delivers a presentation that is both concise and profound, accessible and engaging. As readers explore Tibetan Buddhism more fully than ever before, they will find in His Holiness a great friend and authority.
emptiness and the implicit reading showing the stages of the path associated with one’s experience of emptiness—paves the way for acceptance of the idea of diverse interpretations of a single text, a crucial concept in understanding the tantric scriptures. Similarly, by touching upon the theme of varying levels of subtlety in one’s experience of emptiness from the perspective of the subjective mind, the third turning opens the door for discussion, in tantra, of the many levels of subtlety in
as the various states of existence in samsara, and thus is the root of all delusions. Therefore, the first task of a practitioner of compassion and a good heart is to gain an understanding of the destructive nature of the delusions and how they naturally lead to undesirable consequences. To aid us in considering the destructive nature of the delusions and the undesirability of their effects, I will quote from the Bodhicaryāvatāra. In the fourth chapter, entitled “Conscientiousness,”
time for patience.37 Negative thoughts and emotions are often deceptive. They play tricks on us. Desire, for example, appears to us as a trusted friend, something beautiful and dear to us. Similarly, anger and hatred appear to us like our protectors or reliable body guards. Sometimes, when someone is about to harm you, anger rises up like a protector and gives you a kind of strength. Even though you may be physically weaker than your assailant, anger makes you feel strong. It gives you a
the nature of one’s relationship to women is especially emphasized in Highest Yoga Tantra. For example, despising women is an infraction of one of the root vows of tantra, but the tantras do not speak of transgressing a root vow if one despises men! Male practitioners may have difficulty understanding this obvious discrimination. Also, in the actual meditational practice, or sādhana, of the mandala deities, in many of the Mother Tantras—such as the Vajrayoginī Tantra—the principal deity of the
incorporates all these features of the Buddhist doctrine. 3 THE SECOND TURNING: THE DOCTRINE OF EMPTINESS I N THE SECOND TURNINGof the wheel of Dharma at Vultures’ Peak,12 the Buddha taught the wisdom sutras—the collection of sutras known as perfection of wisdom (prajñāpāramitā) These sutras focus primarily on the topics of emptiness and the transcendent states associated with the experience of emptiness.13 The second turning should be seen as expanding upon the topics that the Buddha