With its emphasis on the concept of buddha-nature, or the ultimate nature of mind, the Uttaratantra is a classical Buddhist treatise that lays out an early map of the Mahāyāna path to enlightenment. Tsering Wangchuk unravels the history of this important Indic text in Tibet by examining numerous Tibetan commentaries and other exegetical texts on the treatise that emerged between the eleventh and fifteenth centuries. These commentaries explored such questions as: Is the buddha-nature teaching found in the Uttaratantra literally true, or does it have to be interpreted differently to understand its ultimate meaning? Does it explicate ultimate truth that is inherently enlightened or ultimate truth that is empty only of independent existence? Does the treatise teach ultimate nature of mind according to the Cittamātra or the Madhyamaka School of Mahāyāna? By focusing on the diverse interpretations that different textual communities employed to make sense of the Uttaratantra, Wangchuk provides a necessary historical context for the development of the text in Tibet.
“Well conceived and superbly researched, this book is an invaluable ‘guidebook’ to the arguments and counterarguments of five centuries’ worth of Tibet’s greatest thinkers. This type of philosophical overview is far too rare in Tibetan Buddhist studies these days, and Wangchuk has performed a great service to the field by undertaking it.” — Roger R. Jackson, translator of Tantric Treasures: Three Collections of Mystical Verse from Buddhist India
The book studies the framework of Mabja’s philosophical project, holding it up against the works of both his own Madhyamaka teachers as well as those of central authors of the later "classical period". The emerging account of the evolution of Madhyamaka in Tibet reveals a striking pattern of transformative appropriations. This, in turn, affords us insights into the nature and function of tradition in Tibetan religious culture and Mahāyāna Buddhism at large. Innovation is demanded for both the advancement and consolidation of tradition.
This ground-breaking book is an invaluable contribution to the study of Tibetan philosophy. It is of great interest to Buddhist practitioners, specialists in Buddhist philosophy and Tibetan Buddhism.
Arguably the most important doctrine in Buddhism, Buddha-nature is, for Mipam, equivalent to the true meaning of emptiness; it is the ground of all and the common ground shared by sentient beings and Buddhas. This ground is the foundation of the path and inseparable from the goal of Buddhahood. Duckworth probes deeply into Mipam’s writings on Buddha-nature to illuminate its central place in a dynamic Buddhist philosophy.
The “stages of the teachings” or tenrim genre of Tibetan spiritual writing expounds the Mahayana teachings as a graded series of topics, from the practices required at the start of the bodhisattva’s career to the final perfect awakening of buddhahood. The three texts in the present volume all exerted seminal influence in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. The first text, The Blue Compendium, presents the instructions of the Kadam teacher Potowa (1031–1106) as recorded by his student Dölpa (1059–1131). This text is followed by Gampopa’s (1079–1153) revered Ornament of Precious Liberation, which remains the most authoritative text on the path to enlightenment within the Kagyü school. The final text is Clarifying the Sage’s Intent, a masterwork by the preeiment sage of the Sakya tradition, Sakya Pandita (1182–1251).
The Madman’s Middle Way presents the first English translation of this major Tibetan Buddhist work, accompanied by an essay on Gendun Chopel’s life liberally interspersed with passages from his writings. Donald S. Lopez Jr. also provides a commentary that sheds light on the doctrinal context of the Adornment and summarizes its key arguments. Ultimately, Lopez examines the long-standing debate over whether Gendun Chopel in fact is the author of the Adornment; the heated critical response to the work by Tibetan monks of the Dalai Lama’s sect; and what the Adornment tells us about Tibetan Buddhism’s encounter with modernity. The result is an insightful glimpse into a provocative and enigmatic workthatwill be of great interest to anyone seriously interested in Buddhism or Asian religions.
Discover the heart of the Buddha’s teachings in this new and beautiful translation of Gampopa’s classic guidebook.
Ornament of Precious Liberation is a spiritual and literary treasure of Tibetan Buddhism and of the Kagyü lineage in particular. Laying out step-by-step the path to buddhahood that is open to us all, to read Gampopa’s text is like receiving the teachings directly from the master himself. It is a quintessential guide to enlightenment that students will return to again and again for its insights into living an awakened life.
In Practical Ethics and Profound Emptiness Khensur Jampa Tegchok walks us carefully through a classic of Indian Buddhist philosophy, explaining the implications of its philosophical arguments and grounding its advice in a recognizable day-to-day world. In Precious Garland, the source text for this commentary, Nagarjuna advises his patron king on how best to take advantage of human life to secure a happy rebirth in the next life while making progress toward the goal of enlightenment. Known primarily for his incisive presentation of emptiness, here Nagarjuna shows his wise understanding of how to navigate the intricacies of worldly life to balance everyday needs with spiritual practice. Loaded with equal measures of penetrating explanations of the highest reality and inspiring encouragement towards the bodhisattva practices, Practical Ethics and Profound Emptiness makes the case for living a thoughtful, morally upright life in the world to achieve immediate and ultimate spiritual goals.
Available for the first time in English, Buddhahood in This Life presents the Great Commentary of Vimalamitra—one of the earliest and most influential texts in the Dzogchen tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. It explores the theory and practice of the Great Perfection tradition in detail, shows how Dzogchen meditation relates to the entirety of the Buddhist path, and outlines how we can understand buddhahood—and even achieve it in our lifetime.
This essential text includes topics such as:
· How delusion arises
· The pathway of pristine consciousness
· How buddhahood is present in the body
· and more.
Translator Malcolm Smith includes an overview, analysis and clarification for all topics. Buddhahood in This Life covers fine details of Dzogchen meditation, including profound “secret instructions” rarely discussed in most meditation manuals. This text is essential for any serious student of the Great Perfection.