Knowledge and Liberation: Tibetan Buddhist Epistemology in Support of Transformative Religious Experience
The Treasury of Knowledge: Book Seven and Book Eight, Parts One and Two: Foundations of Buddhist Study and Practice
Jamgön Kongtrul’s ten-volume Treasury of Knowledge is a unique encyclopedic masterpiece embodying the entire range of Buddhist teachings as they were preserved in Tibet. Tibetan Buddhist teachers expected their students to study Buddhist philosophical texts as well as practice reflection and meditation; present-day students have also realized that awakening has its source in study as well as in reflection and practice.
Foundations of Buddhist Study and Practice comprises Book Seven and Book Eight, Parts One and Two of the Treasury of Knowledge. Book Seven elucidates the various keys needed to correctly interpret, understand, and contemplate Buddhist teachings, including the secret teachings of the Vajrayana. Parts One and Two of Book Eight explain how the teachings are to be integrated into one’s life through the practice of meditation, which unites a state of one-pointed attention with profound insight into emptiness. Jamgön Kongtrul’s evenhanded, elegant, and authoritative statement of such controversial doctrines as unqualified emptiness (“self-empty”) and qualified emptiness (“other-empty”), provisional and definitive meaning, and conventional and ultimate truth as presented in the various schools of Tibetan Buddhism will appeal to both serious Dharma practitioners and advanced students and scholars.
Knowing, Naming & Negation: A Sourcebook of Tibetan Texts and Oral Commentary on Buddhist Epistemology
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.
It would be hard to find a simpler, clearer, more practical explanation of the two fundamental paths of compassion and wisdom than the one Lama Zopa offers us here.
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