Approaching the Great Perfection: Simultaneous and Gradual by Sam Van Schaik

By Sam Van Schaik

From Wisdom's acclaimed reviews in Indian and Tibetan Buddhism sequence, researcher and pupil Sam van Schaik introduces the Nyingma culture of Tibetan Buddhism, taking a look heavily at its perform of Dzogchen—and certainly one of Dzogchen's seminal figures, Jigme Lingpa—to make an in depth research of a middle pressure inside Buddhism: does enlightenment strengthen steadily, or does it come without notice?

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Additional resources for Approaching the Great Perfection: Simultaneous and Gradual Methods of Dzogchen Practice in the Longchen Nyingtig (Studies in Indian and Tibetan Buddhism)

Example text

The Sangha continued to increase in strength. The Master’s arguments were persua­ sive but sometimes he performed miracles to support his claims much to the chagrin of the brahmanas and other sec­ tarians. They tried to traduce the Buddha with the help of a courtesan named Cifica. The poor woman suffered heavy punishment for her guilt of incriminating the Buddha. A similar fate awaited SundarT, who claimed that the Buddha was in love with her. When the Buddha was 72 years of age. King Bimbisara of Magadha was murdered by his son Ajatasatru.

131. 3. Vinaya, Mahavagga, I, 5,3. But better counsel prevailed, and he felt that at least a few clear-sighted men would surely understand the new gospel, and renounce their misguided beliefs. His momen­ tary dejection gave way to a keen desire to impart his know­ ledge to the world. With this new determination he thought of visiting his old teachers but both of them had died a little while ago. Then he thought of going to Banaras1, which was a centre of learning even in those days, to teach his philosophy to the group of five monks who had once become his disciples and then left him in despair.

It appears from the context of these refer­ ences that Ajatasatru. the king of Magadha. met a number of these teachers and asked them each separately to state in clear and unambiguous terms the result of their ascetic prac­ tices. All of them were well known in the country as found­ ers of religious schools with a large following. Their names and the special doctrines they held are briefly stated in the text. It is possible, however, that the information supplied is prejudiced as it emanates from their opponents; in fact, the misstatements they make are partly due to design and partly to ignorance.

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