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Thread: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

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    Default Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    This thread is a re-working of a mass posted in other places over the years. It is a bit more like a reference section of large articles using the second post as an index.

    I did not exactly realize that Nirakara was the subject to start with, but, from immersive study, there is a sort of milieu which is not "in one place" but is, for example, in some cases a handmade copy of a typewritten manuscript that can't be linked or copied in normal computer terms. In some cases there are very good online editions for our sources. And so it will be a sort of selective gathering of things that work like sets of gears, or, perhaps, kaleidoscope images, which perhaps is on the scale of a degree or even a graduate degree. I am not sure. It is pursuant to an interest in yoga or samadhi, of which it is a specific vein. Possibly academic in appearance, but ultimately experiential.

    There was a time when I was not really sure what was or wasn't Yoga or Buddhism. For some reason, almost instinctually, I was able to begin doing it, which caused a scramble to try to find anything to explain it to me, which, in those days of print, was relatively abstruse and difficult.

    That is far from the case any more since all but a few things are available online, and the trouble is more the opposite, a gigantic ocean of material with no apparent structure or system.

    When I started doing this mostly just by soft breath, I managed to trigger extreme energies that are explained differently in different systems. It mainly started with a fascination about death, and therefor involved Bardo states of consciousness, and eventually Bliss, which I am told is one of the main points we want to promote the practice with. Therefor, on what you could call a physiological basis, I can explain all those systems back to themselves.

    Long ago when I was only seventeen, I started something with Bees in the springtime, which, by around Halloween, utterly transformed into something not of this world. This state continued for at least five years and took almost two years to stop forcefully. Something considerably more powerful than anyone else I could find knew about.

    Because I thought so many explanations and systems were valid, nothing really stuck, except what actually helped me was to develop Buddhist Guru Yoga and Tara. It criticizes "yoga done by the energy of the centers alone" and is really a Noumenal process that includes Candali Yoga but not at first. If this had been the beginning of what happened to me, rather than the end, I would have been much better off.

    One of the more solidifying moments that persuaded me to look at original Theosophy and further into Buddhism was an intense encounter with a Lightning Deity:

    Due to the current environment, I cannot operate the type of shrine that would be necessary for deep sessions. I can, however, work like this on editing material together and studying mystical subjects, which is a form of Upacara (Access Concentration or Proximity Concentration). I do this because I personally know it works, to the tune of almost every single little detail I can come up with.

    The entities involved are not simply Devas--a Luminous Being--they are Devatas, which means that it does what its mantra says.

    The truth is vested in Tara in the following way. Devatas respond to mantras, which are Manas--Mind plus Tra--To Protect, and strictly speaking, that is the term for male deities. Goddesses however are Vidyas, which means that their Dharani or incantation directly produces Knowledge. In other words, it may be an altered state of consciousness, but it is not a random flux or spontaneous journey where perhaps you fall off a cliff, it just does exactly what it is talking about.

    That is why it is Reliable.

    Tara is so accessible that they offer you to try her even if not Buddhist.

    If I ask her about magic, she is going to take over and replace the traditional male-based Buddha system, and replace it with a Dharani system that is intended to be distributed to common people who are not monks. Compared to the following, older tokens have been found in Sri Lanka that contain more detail than currently-available scripture, additional mantras.

    Alchi in Ladakh is the oldest continuous Buddhist institution in the world, since around the 800s. Some sites in Nepal are older, but, the properties have been owned by Hindus for a few centuries. One of the murals at Alchi shows the Dharani-based female substitution of the entire Vajradhatu mandala which is the pinnacle of Shingon and Vajrasekhara-based practices. To all appearances it is based on a female Sarvavid Vairocana and has Thirty-seven goddesses:

    Om Vajra Guhya Abhisinca Hum

    There is a slightly cleaner view onAlchi's site.

    It is the second mandala of Sarva Tathagata Tattva Samgraha, the basic core text of Yoga Tantra.

    But compared to the formal system, it is barely discussed, if not censored.

    What this means is that there is a goddess-based Dharani system that is not "taught in the schools" which nevertheless replicates if not outpaces the one that is. The male-based version comes from seventeen mandalas which are explanatory to Prajnaparamita Sutra. One can still join these systems and spend years or a lifetime in it. Instead we will say the above is not static, but, involves motion of Vajri goddesses, which is a reason why in his mantra, Vajrasattva is called Vajri Bhava Maha Samaya Sattva. When you first start using him, he is a samaya of purity, confession, and so forth, in a fairly basic way, but then Bhava or Rati is the process of cultivation which adds familiarity and feeling. Deities don't work without it. If Buddhist deities do not work without Vajrasattva, then the discovery of what this means is mainly in Paramadya and here starting with four relatively basic goddesses.

    Because I have thoroughly experienced the vast majority of physiological and mental states that the tantras discuss, I understand it and know how it works from the inside. But what I have not experienced is their superior teachings. If they say Cloud of Letters, I know Cloud of Turbulence, and so it has explained to me what "should" go there. So the material tells me a lot about how to clean it up and to make it actually beneficial rather than just an interesting technique.

    Now. This is a "system", which is not used by and may even be rejected by many Buddhists. If anything, it is closest to the Buddhism of Nepal, having the following characteristics:

    Its immediate precursor was Yajnawalkya and Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, in the Mithila region with Sita Vaideha, which is the system of Agni Vaisvanara (Agni--Vishnu--Man).

    The second wave of Aranyaka literature was the Tattiriya ca. 300 B. C. which is the oldest known hymn to Durga, and it is this which is carried forward in Samvarodaya Tantra as the goddess Vairocani, who is perhaps our main place-holding substitute for Vajravarahi.

    Most Buddhist tantra is heavily Puranic, which would have been included as a routine part of education at Nalanda University and its many subsidiaries. There are comparatively few deities of only Buddhist origin. On one hand, it is said that the good, true, and useful parts of prior Vedic practices were distributed by Manjushri, and all of the deities from here or tribalism were converted to Bauddha Dharma by Vajrapani, except for the chief or Isana Maheshvara, was overpowered by Ghasmari, or, a Buddhist female subjugated the most powerful and rebellious Hindu male deity.

    The Nepalese Swayambhu Purana is the only Buddhist Purana, while it simultaneously is a tantra.

    There is no other kind of Buddhism in Nepal other than tantric or Vajrayana.

    The specifically Buddhist practices are intended to be incorporated into an Agni Homa.

    Nepal is a vast vault of Sanskrit Buddhism, whereas translations in other languages can generally be said to keep the mantras in Sanskrit.

    So. We do not really want to provoke arguments or debates, we are just giving the views of a school. There are two lineages of Nagarjuna, and here, we are already in a minority called Profound View. The intention here is that it means we study something and try to experience it for ourselves as Inner Meaning. We follow as close as we can to the teaching and if we do it right, it will work. The closest thing that I have to a lineage is transmission of Prajnaparamita Heart Sutra, and part of what that means is to study the subject.

    That is at our own leisure and pace, rather than the formal preoccupation of a school.

    Sometimes people say mantras are dead or deities ineffective without the proper transmission from an authority. I would say this is a matter of degree. Everything I have to say could be called an "understudy" of Vajravarahi, but nothing I would ever suggest doing directly uses her.

    Tara, on the other hand, is much more immanent than such statements seem to realize.

    The Nirakara system is not the same as the First Transmission to Tibet or Nyingma, nor is it the same as the majority school the Gelug order associated with the Dalai Lama lineage. Nirakara is present in Sakya and Kagyu, and typical in Jonang. And if you are aware of Jonang, it is associated with Taranatha and Dolpopa, who coined the term Shentong, and H. H. 3rd Karmapa Ranjung Dorje. He also maintains the view that the Alaya is not really in man and that the Yogacara system is effectively using Seven Consciousnesses or Seven Minds. So there are plenty of indications that the System of Six which you can get the basic idea of in a matter of days if you contemplate a simple mantra, is, as a whole, productive of a System of Seven, as shown from the relatively early Ratna Gotra Vibhaga, to the relatively late discussion of Seven Minds, through the Seven Jewels of Enlightenment, and so on. Hardly anyone talks about this much, however, Bu-ston who compiled the Tibetan canon both sais this was an allowable teaching, and, heavily emphasized Yoga Tantra of Generation Stage.

    Nirakara is a system which uses Parasunya philosophy--which is in common with some Hindu sects. Adi Shankara refuted every kind of Buddhist except for anyone from this school--which is now accepted as the same by at least some of his followers...

    It is the teaching if not direct revelation of the Absolute. Parasunya is a state that operates a chakra above the head. Until we have clarity and precise control of this, in Generation Stage, the head is mainly related to Jewel Family and/or Citra or the Brahmarandra itself. While it is still somewhat interior during our training, it is the Mahasukha Cakra or Jnana Cakra of the tantras.

    Another difference from some other schools is the promulgation of Buddha Nature. This also relates to the doctrine of Refuge of One or Ekayana and comes from early texts such as Ratna Gotra Vibhaga and Queen Srimala Devi Sutra.

    It relies both on the utterly formless as well as perfection of form.

    It is neither Yogacara nor Madhyamika, but more like a blend which fixes slight errors of both. Generally however it may tend to be called Yogacara, in the sense of being a practice, i. e. a Yoga practice similar to Raja Yoga.

    Tantra generally means you have added what I think most Hindus call a Dhyana, which means a visualized image. Some people are good at this, others, like me, are not. But to the extent you can, you are allowed to do a type of greeting to several deities. You are not supposed to self-generate, that is, visualize your body turning into that of the deity. You do a front generation or Yoga view and just face them like a normal conversation. They might not have clothes, but, you are not supposed to place them in union.

    Deity Yoga takes place within Guru Yoga. It is a time commitment.

    If I look at medieval Sanskrit Taras that would have been current with the origination of well-known Twenty-one Praises of Tara, they are not the same as ones found in Tibet these days. Partially. Because we have modern access to Nepali scriptures, we can refer to half of Sadhanamala having over two hundred deities or Dharani Samgraha with over five hundred.

    Because I can do that, I can pick up a Tara that seems to be unknown in Tibet called Mrtyuvacana and show that she specifically equates the well-known Voidness mantra with Parasunya, and, well, there you go, reflects the Nirakara system. Then we also find her in Vajradaka Tantra related to Rasayana or perhaps our highest preliminary technique. Particularly in the case of White Tara or Sita Tara, this original is not the same as the modern nationalized one.

    Not all of those texts are fully-published, among which is the "root" of the entire Chakrasamvara system called Dakini Jala, or, I use that as short for the full title. This has everything to do with Generation Stage. With outer Yoga, we are mainly going to focus in Generation Stage. Dakini Jala has its own Rahasya or Secret Doctrine. I am positive that a system of Taras used properly can alleviate mental anguish and move a person into tantric Generation Stage and possibly Suksma Yoga. Compared to the full versions of the Highest Yoga Tantras, Dakini Jala Rahasya lacks a few finishing touches. To specify, it is valid up to Dissolution of the First Void, which does not mean it is incompatible with the rest, it means that is such a difficult accomplishment that all the practice is geared towards that first.

    If I am re-doing all this in the most elegant manner I have found, it eventually ties in to the Seven Jewels of Enlightenment. You can look this up right now and get some words and symbols, but what this is in both Sutra and Tantra terms is the Path.

    In Tantra, that means it is a transformation of the Grounds, which are the practitioner in all their principles, body and mind as they are.

    The Path is the manifestation of the Absolute, and it is this which is behind all the sadhanas.

    Without transformation by said practices, we are not on the Path or even know what it is.

    These Jewels arise as tantric presences in a Vajradaka sadhana in Sadhanamala, which helps us delineate hordes of goddesses into their actual inner meaning. And so we would say that "under" or "prior to" these Path goddesses are the Gauris or Generation Stage goddesses. The profound meaning of the Gauris is that they are the Nine Sampattis, which are undisturbable concentration. You have it weakly when you can do the concentration on its own without your mind running off somewhere. You have it actually if I can start popping balloons in front of your face and you remain unaware. In symbolism these may be represented by Nets. A net is Jala in Sanskrit, and Dakini Jala means the net of Nadis or subtle nerves, so in the inner sense, this has to do with binding the winds of all of them. Dakini generally means a flow from center to center, called River Nirajan in Agni terminology. In most tantras, Gauris are usually displayed anywhere from thoroughly to extremely horrifying, whereas in the older Dakini Jala, they have a variety of expressions.

    Most of the Dakini Jala format concerns Six Buddha Families. To this, there is the eventual addition of a sort of mystical Seventh and then it is a corresponding Seven Syllable mantra which is like the gate to all of the Chakrasamvara Completion Stages. This seventh aspect is represented chiefly by Vajradhara in Vajra Rosary Tantra and by Vajrayogini understood as arising from Karuna and Suksma Yoga, which is why she is the explainer or tutelary deity of Dakini Jala Rahasya. Practically all Chakrasamvara mantras call him Dakinijalasamvara.

    Dakini Jala also has the teaching of Nine Moods which is not really followed in Tibet. But, if we look in Vajra Rosary Tantra, this has to do with the Life Winds or Prana. Six Families times Nine Winds is fifty-four, which doubles to 108, the number of beads on a rosary. Tson kha pa himself was unable to explain 108 in full detail. So if we get some of the basic ingredients, we are doing good.

    That is still the same basic subject as Brihadaranyaka Upanishad which describes Mind as the Rider on the Winds with six principles.

    By "transformation", it involves the sets of human principles at Indriya (conceptual, weak), Bala (Strong) and Bodhyanga (Jewels of Enlightenment) degrees. These are subjected to the practices of Six Limb (Sadanga) Yoga and Direct Revelation Sequence (Abhisambodhi). Six Limb is not the same as the more famous Eight Limb Yoga of Patanjali, particularly on the subject of Pranayama; and furthermore, it is "the tantric system of Green Tara", i. e. Sadanga Tara. Abhisambodhi is hard to find, but, is explained in Vairocana Abhisambodhi Tantra as the rite through which Buddha achieved Complete Enlightenment. So in the long run, we are trying to mimic what he did.

    84000 "will have" Sadhana Sagara which is a copy of 245 Sadhanamala articles, but, that could take years. At a glance, one can see it begins with Tri Samaya Raja, quickly followed by Sadaksari Mahavidya. This is a female Avalokiteshvara who uses the Six Syllable mantra Om Manipadme Hum to symbolize and stand for the whole Six Family system as in Dakini Jala. This is integrated with Vajrasattva, or, more specifically, Mahasukha Vajrasattva or his tantric version.

    This Vajrasattva is really the origin of any Buddhist Guru Yoga, being himself the Sixth Family.

    This use of the Six Syllable or Sadaksari Vidya is catalogued similarly in Japan or in the early part of Beijing Imperial Collection by Anonymous in the 500s, along with 8320 Dharanis. There, it is at least beside Seven Jewels or Sapta Ratna.

    For the very beginning, according to the University of Hamburg:

    The Trisamayarājatantra is among the earlier specimens of Buddhist tantra; it is already quoted in the seventh or eighth century by Śāntideva in his Śikṣāsamuccaya. Its importance for later developments is shown, for example, by a related sādhana that appears at the beginning of many Nepalese manuscripts of collections of meditation texts [such as what we find in Sadhanamala].

    No Sanskrit manuscript of the tantra itself, of which a Tibetan translation exists, has as yet come to light; but an old, incomplete, manuscript from Eastern India of a Sanskrit commentary survives in Nepal. A volume will be prepared containing a critical edition of the commentary, and studies of aspects of the Trisamayarājatantra in comparison with early non-Buddhist tantric traditions, making use of the Tibetan translation of the tantra and other material.

    Mahavairocana Tantra refers to Śiksā–samuccaya, a valuable selection of quotations from various Mahāyāna texts, dealing with the practices a Bodhisattva was expected to engage in. There are several interesting features to be found in this work relevant to the development of Tantric Buddhism in India. One is Śāntideva’s acceptance and use as a textual authority (āmnāya) of the Trisamaya–rāja, one of the sources of the
    Mahā–vairocana Tantra. The other is the evidence for the growing importance of
    internal visualization, similar to that in tantric practices. These are the relevant

    1 ‘ You should recite this vidyā mentioned in the Trisamaya–rāja for the mandala samaya:

    Namah sarva–buddha–bodhisattvānām. Om viraji viraji mahā–cakra–viraji. Sata sata
    sārata sārata trapi trapi vidhamani. Sabhajani sambhajani, taramati, siddha agre
    tvam svāhā. With that you may enter all mandalas.

    In Yogini's Eye, Trisamaya Vyuha is also used stating that although it is Kriya Tantra, its source is in Akanistha, right after note 772 informs us that Amnaya Manjari by Abhayakaragupta is the most extensive commentary on Samputa Tantra. He says only here is Great Ecstasy Kaya [Mahasukha Kaya] taught as a female knowledge-holding Sambhogakaya.

    Samputa is the main thing that tells us to conjoin sadhana with Homa; and so Abhayakaragupta has commented Samputa and Amnaya Manjari which connect to the Buddhist systems that he compiled in Vajravali, Sadhanamala, and NSP Nispannayogavali catalogs of mandalas. That is why these are all so one-system-ish, because they are. He did not create hardly any of the material; he is an emanation of Avalokiteshvara who synthesized the traditions into the Agni Homa.

    Alex Wayman uses Tri-samaya Raja as an example of Imperatives or Commands in Dharanis.

    Sadhanamala opens with, perhaps, a modification of the above because the eventual lord is Amoghasiddhi, and then explains thirty-seven forms of Avalokiteshvavara, forty-one of Manjushri, and four of Vajrapani. Because these are male Bodhisattvas, it might be easy to overlook the fact that one of the passages is a goddess who is an individual.

    1100s Avalokiteshvara with White Shadakshari Mahavidya goddess (and Manidharin):

    They are under the Dhyani Buddhas and over Five Deity Khasarpana with Amoghapasha, Bhrkuti, Hayagriva, and Ekajati.

    She conveys knowledge through speech according to the Drukpa inscription:

    Om mani padme hum. Applied to the Six bodies, om is the dharmakaya, ma sambhogakaya, ni nirmanakaya, pad svabhavikakaya, me abhisambhodikaya, hum unchanging vajrakaya; to spontaneously obtain the six bodies [rely on] the six syllables.

    Om mani padme hum. Applied to the Six Families, om is all families combined as the Great Compassionate One, ma Vairochana, ni Vajrasattva, pad Ratnasambhava, me Amitabha, hum Amoghasiddhi; even the buddhas of the Six Families, reciting the six syllables, obtained the [result].

    Om mani padme hum. Applied to the six consorts, om is all families combined in the mother Shadakshari, ma space Samantabhadri, ni earth Buddha Lochana, pad fire Pandara Vasini, me water Mamaki, hum air Samaya Tara; even these five pure elements rely on the recitation of the six syllables.

    Om mani padme hum. Applied to the dakinis, om is the mistress of all dakinis Vajrayogini, ma flesh Buddha Dakini, ni mind Vajra Dakini, pad warmth Ratna Dakini, me blood Padma Dakini, hum breath Karma Dakini; to receive the blessings of the pure inner five elements of the Five Dakini Families rely on the recitation of the six syllables. Ge'o. Sarva mangalam.

    Being aware there may be synonyms or re-classifications of these, it is a mnemonic for a great proportion of the whole system.

    If I had been able to see this when I was younger, it would have been vastly more helpful than various fragments and random acquisitions.

    In this Drukpa view, she appears to be over Shangpa Buddhadakini or perhaps Machig Labdron, Sukhasiddhi, etc.:

    This three-deity configuration is also the main icon of a hidden chapel in Shalu near Shigatse, thought to be some of the oldest Shangpa Kagyu art. Here she is rather bold:

    Brian Hodgson explains that the common six syllable mantra is only one of three for the Triad:

    Om Sarva Vidya Hum

    Om Prajnaye Hum

    Om Manipadme Hum

    By "Triad", he means

    (Adi) Buddha (A),

    (Adi Prajna) Dharma (U),

    (Padmapani) Sangha (presumably M).

    This Padmapani holds Jewel and Lotus, and Nine Hindu Deities issue from him [i. e., a form of Avalokiteshvara]. Adi Prajna is Lakshmi or Prajnaparamita, Arya Tara, mother of Adi Buddha, wife of Buddha, Desire, Akasa springs from her, Trikonakara Yantra or Yoni or downward triangle with bindu, Dhyanarupya, Modesty, Prosperity, in his synonyms.

    Moreover, Adi Prajna is the seventh principle, similar to Agni, Three-in-One or a Trinity, in this case, Vasudhara, Sitatapatra Parasol, and Guhyeshvari. What this means is that there are outer Sutra-based and Dharani practices which have bearing or pass through tantric Vajravarahi, Nairatma, Mahamaya, etc., which are all hypostasized into those, as are the standard Buddhist Prajnas, Locana and the rest.

    In the Nepalese context, the Sangha is the Bodhisattvas, and most of the esoteric emphasis is really with Bodhisattvas rather than Buddha, because it is Bodhisattvas who can enter our consciousness and help us reach the condition they are in. Perhaps you could say Avalokitesvara and the Bodhisattvas. In Prajnaparamita Heart Sutra we call him Bodhisattva Mahasattva.

    There is a closely-corresponding goddess not due to the picture but because the Dharani of a goddess is called a Vidya like the following.

    In Sadhanamala, Sadaksari is exercise number Six and is what I would describe as about average size, and the mantra may have six syllables, but it is one word, manipadme:

    āryaṣaḍakṣarīmahāvidyāyai namaḥ

    ādau tāvan mantrī sukhāsanopaviṣṭaḥ mukhaśaucādikaṃ
    kṛtvā svahṛdi candrasthasitahrīḥkāravinirgataraśmibhir
    gurubuddhabodhisattvān purato buddhādīn dṛṣṭvā sampūjya triśaraṇagamanādikaṃ
    kuryād ratnatrayaṃ me śaraṇam ityādinā /
    yāvantaḥ sattvāḥ sattvasaṃgrahena saṃgṛhītāḥ aṇḍajā vā
    jarāyujā vā saṃsvedajā vā aupapādukā vā rūpiṇo vā rūpiṇo vā
    saṃjñino vā asaṃjñino vā naivasaṃjñānāsaṃjñino
    vā yāvat kaścit sattvadhātuḥ prajñapyamānaḥ prajñāpya
    te sarve mayā anupadhiśeṣanirvāṇadhātau pratiṣṭhāpayitavyā
    iti /

    Now it anticipates you have practical use of Purity Mantra. This is typically used to remove chatter and distraction and enter Voidness:

    tataḥ oṃ svabhāvaśuddhāḥ sarvadharmāḥ svabhāvaśuddho
    'ham iti vāratrayam uccārayet /

    This is followed by something like a spawn sequence that involves a White Lotus and White Hrih syllable:

    tad anu śūnyatāṃ muhūrtam ālambayet / tadanantraṃ svahṛdaye sitapadmopari candramaṇḍalaṃ tasyopari sitahrīḥkāraṃ tato niścarad anekaraśmiśatasahasraṃ
    dhyātvā tena sarvasattvānām aśeṣānādikālasañcitaṃ rāgādikleśasamūhaṃ sattvānāṃ viśodhyante / tat punas tatraiva praveśayet /

    Her form is like that of White Lokesvara:

    tatpapariṇatam ātmānaṃ lokeśvararūpaṃ sarvālaṅkārabhūṣitaṃ śuklavarṇaṃ caturbhujaṃ vāmataḥ padmadharaṃ, dakṣiṇato akṣarasūtradharaṃ, aparābhyāṃ hastābhyāṃ hṛdi saṃpuṭāñjalisthitaṃ dhyāyāt / dakṣiṇe maṇidharaṃ tadvadvarṇaṃ bhujānvitaṃ padmāntaroparisthaṃ vāme tathaiva aparapadmasthāṃ ṣaḍakṣarīṃ
    mahāvidyāṃ /

    And she is going to use the Four Activities on Mahasukha Vajrasattva from Paramadya Tantra:

    tataḥ oṃ mahāsukha vajrasattva jaḥ huṃ vaṃ hoḥ suratas tvaṃ alalalalahoḥ aḥ aḥ aḥ aḥ ity adhiṣṭhānamantrajājam uccārayet /

    Cintamani Kalpa arises with another Lokesvara form:

    evaṃ dhyātvā tato lokeśvarātmahṛdayacandramaṇḍalād
    akṣasūtrakāraṃ śuklavarṇaṃ mukhena nirgatya
    nābhau praviśantaṃ cakrabhramaṇayogena imaṃ mantrarājaṃ sarva-
    buddhahṛdayacintāmaṇikalpaṃ paśyed animittayogena / tato japaṃ
    kṛtvā bhramaṇapraveśanādikaṃ prāpyācireṇaiva kālena śrāddhaḥ
    kṛpāvān gurubhakto yogī sidhyati /

    And then you are going to recite the regular Avalokiteshvara and Vajrasattva mantras:

    oṃ maṇipadme huṃ iti jāpamantraḥ /

    tata utthānakāle imaṃ mantrarājam uccāryottiṣṭhet /

    oṃ vajrasattva samayamanupālaya vajrasattvenopatiṣṭha, dṛḍho me bhava, sutoṣyo me bhavaḥ; supoṣyo me bhava, anurakto me bhava, sarvasiddhiṃ me prayaccha, sarvakarmasu ca me cittaṃ śreyaḥ kuru, huṃ hahahaha hoḥ bhagavan sarvatathāgatavajramā me muñca vajrībhava mahāsamayasattva āḥ / evam uktā yathāmukhaṃ vihared iti /

    // āryaṣaḍakṣarīmahāvidyāsādhanaṃ samāptam /

    Since it brings in Cintamani Kalpa, it also brings in Jewel Family.

    We will get back to that later.

    This makes a very basic connection of the proper esoteric Vajrasattva with Six Families, whereas Dakini Jala expands each of these into a wheel with retinue. It also adapts two, four, and six armed forms.

    Dakini Jala was practiced by Gambhiravajra in Sitabani charnel ground, and he obtained Vajramrita Tantra, or the main explanation of Jewel Family. Although this is only partially available, we are in a position to say that goddess Sitabani is effectively Hiranyagarbha of the Puranas, and was transmitted by Buddha to his own son Rahula to alleviate adult mental disorders. The practical, training, or invocative Hiranyagarbha is really with Mayuri and a whole bunch of stuff behind the tiny little speck of Cintamani hint just given.

    When he is called Mahasukha and it starts to involve Mahasukha Cakra, that is under the protection of Jewel Family.

    In Sadhanamala, it appeared to me that one of the most comprehensive practices is with Vajra Tara 110. It turns out that in the Sakya system, she is considered a Completion Stage as powerful as the whole Kalachakra Tantra. Also, her author is Ratnakarasanti, one of the most important proponents of Nirakara. It leads to Hevajra Tantra. She exemplifies the misleading tendency with her name, it just means her main item is a vajra, she is really in Jewel or Ratna Family. Nairatma is her Sixth Principle.

    Along with Vajra Tara, Namasangiti is the other Yoga deity understood as able to convey Highest Yoga Completion Stage. And with this, we also have a unique Dharani system corresponding to the Paramitas and Stages of a Bodhisattva. Here, the Paramitas are in Ratna Family.

    If Nairatma means the sixth principle, but, in a state of tantric transformation, and, we are not in it, Vajrasattva is the same thing and that is why he is doing Purification. Vajrasattva is the Samaya Being you have to attract first. For a good view on how he is the Mind or Manas going through the crucible of Void Gnosis, there is something fairly sound in tantric terms, without being much of anything by way of mantras or sadhanas. It is why Vajrasattva is a "bookworm" through "all these tantras". According to HPB, Lotsawa Vairocana is pre-eminent among the translators; here is his missing Vajrasatva Khasam Anta Mahātantra.

    Here is part of the key. In Dakini Jala, the male aspect of the sixth principle is Vajrasattva. The female however can be Jnanadakini, Nairatma, Vajravarahi, etc., if you "have" these, and if not, you use a more tamed-down version. If it follows the teachings, then for instance you can think of it as Sadaksari Mahavidya now, with the awareness she certainly interfaces with Vajrasattva, and then you can change it to something more profound when suitable. In the inscription, Sadaksari did not directly mention it, but, implied she was "above" the Space or Akasha Element or Dhatu, which makes her the Mind, Mental, Manas, Mano Element or Dharma Dhatu.

    In the same way that a Sixth Family requires a Wisdom not found in the regular group of Five Wisdoms, its opposing sin is Sakkaya Ditthi. It is the view that there could be identity in any of the skandhas, or that there might be. There is no existence of a self in any of that, there is not one to be conquered, removed, or identified with. What there are is a heap of default processes called skandhas that are to be stopped. The act of stopping it reveals the Wisdom or Prajna behind it. So this sixth one may be called Avidya Skandha, which transforms into Jnana Kaya. Jnana is Gnosis, which would correspond to Abhisambodhikaya in the table given above.

    The Skandhas are "not sakkaya" because, according to the commentaries, it corresponds to sat-kāya, 'existing group', hence not to Sanskrit sva-kāya, 'own group' or 'own body'. The Skandhas are "not an existing group". Instead the sadhanas do talk about Svabhavikakaya and sva- as the combination to quite a few things. Sakkaya Ditthi is entirely abandoned only on reaching the path of Stream-winning (sotāpatti-magga; s. ariya-puggala).

    The Body of Vajrasattva is made of Mantra, Vidya, and Life Wind, and is a Mano Maya or Mayavi Rupa or Illusory Body. He gets Void Gnosis in a state that is utterly still and quiet and then emerges from it perfectly as this, which is Heruka Yoga. This does not correspond to the Mental Plane of Theosophy, which is the Plane of Akash, which is the lair of Voids and Formless Dhyanas. Tantric activity occurs in Kama Loka, which is usually described as Six Heavens, with the Akanistha or Buddhist Pure Land being a Seventh Heaven and domain of Sambhogakaya. The Theosophical Mahatmas said the Mayavi Rupa is the highest body, and only described the "higher" states as "a breath". That is the same as what Buddhist practice says; it may have different degrees of purity, but there is no form beyond it, and so Kaya or Buddha Body as applied in several ways is more of a mental state or condition, since the Nirmanakaya is the Form Body and Sambhoga is a form in the "other world", the Dharmakaya and its subtleties are formless.

    Whose consort is which one is a matter of "at what time", because, in one way, Vajrasattva by experiencing No Self is going to bond with Divine Ego.

    In the lap is the consort Vajragarvi (Tib.: dor je nye ma), also known as Vajradhatu-ishvari (Tib.: dor je ying wang chug ma).

    Another name of her is Vajrasatvatmika, "composed of Vajrasattva", i. e. of the Body just described. She is like a subtle quality of the Bell or Fourth Activity goddess and so sometimes is identical. If Vajrasattva is with someone, this is a slight increase from him just being in a ring of goddesses such as in Paramadya, so, a continuation of the process.

    The pair of white consorts is from Mindroling tradition, this being from the 1300s:

    Part of what we find is that Six Syllable White Lokeshvara is over the shoulder on the left row of descending figures. On the right are Nagaraja Bodhisattva, and, Green Tara. There is also Namasangiti, and, the uppermost central deity is Prajnaparamita. Some of the Seven Jewels are along the bottom.

    And so if Prajnaparamita is the "origin" deity which "may" unleash tantric Vajradhatvishvari, if we look around elsewhere, we will find Vajradhatvishvari assigned as the consort in Jewel and Tathagata Families as well. So she is mobile and malleable. The basic definition of her is the central upwards life wind. This practice is very similar to Ayurveda with respect to pranic winds.

    So she is within or following a Prajnaparamita-based explanation, and she is hard to find out much more about, except that is really what is in this "book of Tara". The most explanatory thangka of Sadhanamala is Drukpa Kagyu. The central figure is what I call a Big or Laughing Ekajati. The uppermost central deity here is Marici Vajradhatvishvari:

    For some reason, they have included single instances of Dharani goddesses Cunda and Janguli. Most of the rest are alternate Maricis and Ekajatis with I believe Humkara.

    Marici has many characteristics, but, ultimately she is the Universal Ray which informs Tathagatas of the Ten Directions that a new Buddha has manifested in a World-System.

    The art series posted is a synopsis of a process, which is, I guess, incredibly hypostatical, starting from the STTS format at the beginning which activates Sattvavajri and Cunda, expands to Six Families, and then, in the words of Receptacle of the Sacred, Prajnaparamita becomes Vajradhatvishvari by appropriating Marici and radiating light. Marici is the only one in Sadhanamala who is Vajrasattva Ishvari.

    Vajrasattva is part of any Guru Yoga. Most of these also involve a particular human guru. In Kagyu, if we wish to meditate but do not have such a human, we use Vajradhara as Transcendental Guru. And so the sadhanas are like an ever-unfolding lotus of Vajrasattva's experiences. He is called "he", but, more accurately, is the Hare or Divine Androgyne.

    And so if you wish, in Yoga, there is a slightly closer visualization you can do called Pride of the Deity, which is what I do with Vajrasattva. If you place your hand on top of your head for thirty seconds or so and then take it away, you should be able to feel an after-image of warmth. Try to keep feeling this. The deity's lotus pedestal rests on top of your head and there they sit in a miniature form. And then after you do Vajrasattva's mantra a number of times, he melts and washes you from the inside and tons of garbage flow out of you, or something along those lines.

    If we look at major systems like Chakrasamvara, it is said that a number of Mahasiddhas practiced for a large number of years, like twelve, with no result. Because Yoga is putting together the underlying engine, slowly, if you reach the limit, then the Chakrasamvara will work. Without this capability, all it is, is another kind of Kriya Tantra. Our boundary or limit is practically all of the foundation used in Chakrasamvara, Hevajra, and Cinnamasta Trikaya Vajrayogini Completion Stages.

    For the most part we are doing Pranayama, Third of the Six Yogas.

    So I have an encyclopedic volume of material from posts which started a little differently, and I suppose it really is just its own subject. I am going to make a post that will be an index of links that just goes wherever in the thread it needs to. Responses or questions are fine, ultimately it will just work like its own reference section.
    Last edited by shaberon; 15th March 2022 at 07:40.

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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    Index Template

    Over time, this will get new edits for live links. It is not feasible to link every single thing, since links count against the text limit in a post in their code form, so it has to be limited or it will add up quickly. Furthermore, it also works internally, such that now Tara's Song and Commentary are linked, which in turn links to her individual aspects.

    We are looking at ways to get closer to Buddhist spirituality or to a deity. Right now anyone who is curious can search for maybe two minutes and find a copy of a Vajrabhairava practice or something like that. And so this won't be making copies of that sort of thing and I don't suggest doing that. It will be more like gathering all the parts that make the engine work. To take a broad swipe at it, one might say we are enhancing the Honey Doctrine or Madhu Vidya of the Upanishads into Varuni of the tantras. My mind flailed around with this for a long time, but, it really does have a lot to do with Prana or Life Force. We will cover a lot of philosophy and background, but, it is Yogacara, meaning it is intended to have a practice associated with it, which causes changes in Prana compared to worldly behavior.

    We could say this is about a teaching of Six Limb Yoga or Sadanga Yoga, or the Six Yogas, which only partially resembles the well-known Eight Limb or Astanga Yoga from Patanjali. I am not sure it is a contradiction, so much as a specifically-enhanced way of doing it, almost inverse, like a mirror image.

    These Six Limbs are also the Six Buddha Families, which is the idea behind the first post above.

    Because Sanskrit is very immersive, Wisdom Library is an excellent resource for stacks of comparative definitions, and also a huge collection of online texts. Nevertheless, it characterizes Sadhanamala as "fifth century", which is almost entirely untrue, except for maybe a few parts such as the basic Tara mantra. It has material from Nagarjuna, Saraha, and Indrabhuti that would probably be its oldest portion. Maybe you could call it a Nagarjuna Tara book. It was collated by Abhayakaragupta and has been reproduced from an original manuscript of 1165.

    Another thing for example if you hit "find on page" here for "recording", or just scroll through it, most of the mantras and songs are pretty easy to pick up on. Some of the videos show Sanskrit lyrics with up to six translations simultaneously. It is still a lingua franca from Mongolia to Indonesia in modern Buddhism. The web browser's "find on page" has been my main tool in, well, finding things, but also in understanding a word. We can do this with Romanized Sanskrit which is highly effective versus other formats. Same thing is useful on these pages. Use a keyword to go to whatever you are looking for.

    Topics on this first page are some orientation towards the Buddha Families and the basic practice of Yoga and Vajrasattva:

    1: Six Families and Sadaksari Mahavidya, Khasama Vajrasattva

    5: Sarvadurgati Format and Usnisa Vijaya Dharani recording, Padma or Lotus Family Tara, Sitabani, Sattvavajri, Cunda

    6: Icons Worthwhile to See (IWS) and Avalokiteshvara "missing" Taras, Vajrapani and Mamaki, Cintamani, Noose

    7: Cintamani Tara, Jewel Family, Golden Light Sutra, Mahamayuri Vidyarajni Sutra, Golden Light Dharani recordings

    8: Karma Family, Mahattari Tara, Twenty-one Taras recording

    These exercises are based in Ngondro or Common Preliminaries, which are fashioned in slightly different ways in different schools of Buddhism. Most of them assume you are training under a personal guru. Because many of us as converts are not, this is the esoteric version:

    Guru Yoga

    9: Prajnaparamita, Vajra Family, Guru Yoga, Prajnaparamita Heart Sutra recordings

    10: Kagyu Guru Yoga practice, Vajrasattva Hundred Syllable mantra recording

    It may be simplest to think of Yoga or the Six Yogas as being paired with Body, Speech, and Mind. In this yogic sense, "Body" means the overall time period of transforming an ordinary human body into a gnostically-charged one.

    Early tantras, having Buddha or Tathagata Family as the main subject, Vairocana. According to Sadanga Yoga, the first two members, Pratyahara (Withdrawal) and Dhyana (Meditation), are in the sphere of Body or Kaya:

    12: Sri Paramadya Tantra

    13: Sarva Tathagata Tattva Samgraha (STTS) in relation to Dakini Jala and Sattvavajri; structural systems of tantras

    14: STTS Chapter Twenty-four and Vajrasekhara

    15: Vairocana Abhisambodhi Tantra (VAT)

    16: Tantric yoga on bonding a Deity, Devata, or Samaya Sattva

    17: Subtle body of Four Cakras

    The very essential basic is that even without intricate visualization of all the Nadis, Buddhist Yoga operates on Four Chakras and balances Three Channels, i. e. the main spinal nerves as in most yoga. And then it is like Vajrasattva, there is a kind of universal mantra with no workaround which is Om Ah Hum, and it is mainly this which is safe to apply to one's body and to an external deity image. At this point, we are training that our conceptual understanding of Voidness or Sunyata is the actual "state of things" and our mind and body enter it and after some time, there becomes a seed, Bindu Nada, and here, the mantra called Three Syllables is applied to:

    Prajnaparamita with Sarasvati

    This includes the syllable Hrim and Mirror of Maya, and her or their Picu identity.

    Here I think we could say we are looking for what may be called the Prasangika intent. In other words, I am not sure you can even get Shentong unless it comes out of Rangtong. At the same time, it is Yogacara, because this is a practice that alters consciousness and state-of-being.

    Muttering exercise or Bindu-Nada of Inverted Stupa:

    19: Prajnaparamita, Om Ah Hum, and the structure of sadhanas related to Six Yogas

    Page Two

    Some important Sutras and fundamentals in Yogacara and Shentong

    21: Scriptures such as Lion's Roar Sutra, Ratna Gotra Vibhaga (RGV), Luminous Heart, Vajra Rosary Tantra, and basic White Vajra Tara

    23: Catuskoti and Buddha Nature

    26: Shurangama Sutra and Sitatapatra Parasol with Five Assemblies recording

    There has been a very recent publication of the largest early tantra, related to Manjushri:

    28: Parasol and Vajrasattva recordings, Nagaraja, Manjushri Mula Kalpa (MMK)

    29: Bhrkuti and MMK, Parnasabari, Parasol, Marici

    The Prajnaparamita text, and the Paramitas of the Path, are a unique display in the mandala of Manjushri:

    30: Tara Twelve and Nada Bindu, Day--Night Tara, Bhrkuti, Paramita system of Manjushri, Janguli and Gandhari

    When we are at a comfortable level of mixing mantra and meditation, we are really moving into tantric Generation Stage:

    31: The Secret Doctrine of Dakini Jala, Vajra Family Isvaris, Inverted Stupa

    Some Taras with Paramita correspondences and six Paramita dharanis:

    32: Mahacina, the Paramitas, Sri Mahadevi or Mahasri and their Sutras, Dhanada, Seven Syllable deity, Jnanadakini

    I have tried to follow the teachings closely, which makes a Glyph in Time. Generation Stage in Suksma Yoga:

    33: Guhyajnana Dakini, the Inverted Stupa image, Vairocani, Durga Suktam recording

    Particularly in Nepal, Vasudhara is the "publicly-known" goddess who opens the occult or initiatic system. She is part of the Homa rite, involving her Gopali or Cow Herder form. Here, we found the continuity of the oldest universal form of a Vedic Apri hymn, which invites three goddesses, Ila, Bhu, and Sarasvati. In the medieval era, the goddess Bharati was conflated with Eloquence and retro-fitted onto Sarasvati; however, Ila and Bhu are Samaya beings of Vasudhara, she is the mistress of Namasangiti Dharanis, and Bharati is a hypostatical form of her expanded from the presence of Bhu here. In Nepal, Vasudhara Samaya is the entry to esoteric devi practices.

    34: Vasudhara and her dharani related to Paramitas

    35: Vasudhara, the Apri Hymns, Hevajra

    36: Vasudhara related to other deities

    37: Vasudhara, Prithvi and Kamadhenu, Gopali and Alakavati, Vasudhara mantra recording

    There is a very similar Sutra-based dharani goddess who begins with her version of what we made for Prajnaparamita in post nineteen. Now when the palpable perception of Voidness is accompanied by a reversal of force, Bindu Nada point becomes a Crescent, or Bow, and the Three Syllables are applied to:

    38: The Crescent of Inverted Stupa and Pratisara Muttering

    At this point we are on a plateau which is valid for an indeterminate length of time. So we will study the Homa and certain deities which, among other things, make it so we do not have to perform the same "service" every time. Some of it is consistent, yet there is room for variety.

    In Yoga, there are primarily two main systems being combined, one most strongly associated with Guhyasamaja or Esoteric Community:

    39: Five Stages of Guhyasamaja, Pratisara and Pratyangira

    40: Twenty-one Taras and Krsna Yamari

    Page Three:

    Not to the Homa yet. This is a great deal of Tara's original background, in order to study her song or praise, which itself will turn into a sub-index:

    41: Tara Tantra and MMK, Buddha cycles

    43: Inverted Stupa passive and active, Meats and Nectars

    44: Tara Tantra, Vajra Family, Ekajati, Ugra Tara dharanis, Vajra Tara

    45: Tara, Mamaki, and Vajradhatvishvari, Initiations

    46: Guhyasamaja, Vajrasattva and Vajradhara, Dharmadhatu Vajra and Vajradhatvishvari, MSD4, Initiations

    47: Tara and Vajra Family, Maitri's Panchakara, Dharmadhatu, Guhyasamaja Chapter Fourteen, Ekajati, Arundhati, Mangala Rupini recording

    Here we will take a long Sanskrit quote from Vajrapani about the Six Yogas:

    48: Vajrapani's Six Yogas, Vajra Surya and Vajramrita, Buddhakapala, and Karma Family Taras (Mahalakshmi, Mahasri, Khadira)

    And so we want to fuse everything into something that on the one hand, is a commonly-known tune of non-tantric daily recital, but is also considered to be a form of Highest or Anuttara Yoga like the advanced tantras:

    49: Twenty-one Praises of Tara

    The point to this is we are not taking a Guhyasamaja commitment or anything like that which would compel us to do certain things, a lot, frequently. The song is so you can go at your own pace, you can look at a single deity or even a single word for as long as you want to, and then it is a bit like putting a puzzle together.

    Tibet received Suryagupta's system relatively early, Atisha's ca. 10th century, but did not have Tara Tantra until the 12th by which point it must have seemed marginal to them. Conversely, it is dealing with a system that was widespread across India well before Suryagupta, etc., made certain adaptations of it. So to the extent possible, we are removing the Tibetan system-specific Taras, and replacing them with ones that may have something to do with the verses.

    Existing information is almost entirely about one or the other set of Taras as expressed by one of the gurus. It is almost correct to say that nothing has ever been discussed about the actual song.

    Some of the following is more on some specific Taras:

    50: Day--Night Tara

    51: Bhrkuti, 108 Names of Tara and Lalita Mahatmya/Brahmanda Purana

    52: Mitra's mandalas, Parnasabari, Marici, Four Initiations

    53: Sitabani

    54: Gandhari and Mahabharata characters, Kurukulla, Pancha Raksa 206

    55: Varuni and Armor, Vairocani and the Daityas

    56: Varuni, Parnasabari, and Yamini

    57: Tara Seventeen and Harini

    58: Bhima and Sulini, Mahamaya Vijaya Vahini and Guhyajnana Dakini

    59: Avalokiteshvara Companions or Consorts

    60: Ekajati, Charya Tantra, and Mahakala

    Page Four:

    On this page is a look at who the "outer" yoginis were, compared to the inner ones and variations in naming and describing them.

    61: Siddharajni, Dharma Tara, Six Yoginis and Dakini Jala Families, synonyms and degrees of Samadhi, Cunda, Manohara

    62: Manohara

    63: Gauris and Vajraraudris, Gauris' forms in Dakini Jala

    64: Ishvari, Gauris, Vajrayogini, Lamas, and Carcika

    65: Carcika, Ghoracandi, Khaganana, Sabaris

    66: Khaganana, Manohara, Lama

    67: Bhairavi and Virya

    68: Parnasabari, Ghasmari, Lankesvari and Viraja

    69: Sosaling or Sitabani, Seven Syllable deity and Jewels of Enlightenment, Parnasabari and Nadis related to Homa, Marici, Sarasvati, and Viraja

    70: Viraja, Viraja Homa mantra recording, Usnisas, Yakshas, and Mayuri

    71: Ghasmari and Samputa Tantra with Gauris' mantras

    72: Dattatreya, Ekajati--Vajrangi, Jnana Yoga, Parnasabari and Gauris, Dhyanas and core of Dakarnava

    Agni Homa is considered a Kriya Tantra by the archivists. In this section we will put together some of the explanation of Agni along with how it works as Yoga, i. e. purely visualized rather than a Kriya ritual with all the items. And rather than dealing with the fact that the outer ritual would involve multiple fires, if we were to actually use any of its ingredients, this can be a Milk and Honey rite.

    73: Khandaroha

    74: Agni Homa, Swayambhu Purana, and Preparation

    75: Samputa and Ramya, Mahabala and Jambhala and conversion of the Ten Wrathful Ones

    76: Homa and the Fires of Agni

    77: Pravargya and Agni Homa

    78: Wrathful Deities and Fire, Kila

    This is non-Buddhist but seems to work very well with having Mahalakshmi as the first Dharani goddess:

    79: Lakshmi Tantra

    80: Lakshmi Tantra and Golden Drop Lakshmi; Aisvarya

    Page Five:

    This part is a Puranic continuation from Agni:

    82: Tattvas, Bhrgu and Angiras, Pitrs or Fathers

    84: Agni and Agni's descendants and the Pitrs

    85: The Seven Rays

    There it may sound familiar to students of western occultism. But it seems if we take a look at what it says it is, then it may not be quite the same.

    86: Vajrasattva, Varuni, Pithas in Vajradaka and Dakarnava

    87: Dakarnava Pithas and Lakshmi Tantra

    88: Pitha changes from Kubjika to Vajradaka & Dakarnava; Mahalakshmi, Dhyana, and Nirakara; Vipula Siddhi; alternate list of Amnayamanjari Pithas

    89: Alexandra David-Neel and Candali; White Tara and Gold Prajnaparamita; Rudra

    90: Asta Smasana or Eight Cemeteries

    91: Mantranusarini and Janguli, Mahattari and Vipula, System of Time

    92: Seven Paramitas, Janguli, Serpent Noose, and Sarvadurgati Parishodhana; surprise from Parasol

    93: Combining Six Yogas, Five Stages, and Abhisambodhi; more masquerades from Parasol, enhanced "Shurungama Mantra"

    94: Vajrasattva and Janguli's Ephemeral Backstories; refurbishing the Buddhist trail from Bodhgaya

    95: Mayuri Mandala

    96: Mahamayuri and Janguli into Paramartha Parasol and her sub-tantras

    Here are some extremely rare documents that are not linked online. From internal evidence, we find that both of these, as well as the overlooked Dakini Jala Tantra, actually were the major backbone of the system of Abhayakaragupta, along with Sadhanamala:

    97: Krishna Yamari Tantra --entire transcript

    98-100: Paramartha Sitatapatra Parasol -- entire transcript

    Page Six:

    101: Paramartha Parasol transcript -- end section

    102: Janguli and Ratnakarasanti

    103: Abhayakaragupta and Ratnakarasanti

    104: Ratnakarasanti, Suchness, and Initiations

    105: Sarvabuddhasamayoga--SBS or Dakini Jala

    The previous host of Sadhanamala quit working, so, this was the available version, ca. 2015-2020.

    Sadhanamala -- entire transcript:

    106: Beginning and Sadaksari Mahavidya, Avalokiteshvara

    107: Manjushri and Vajrapani

    108: Tara through Janguli 122

    109: Ekajati 123 through Tarodbhava Kurukulla 172

    110: Kurukulla 173 through Vasudhara 216

    111: Vajravarahi 217 through most of Nairatma 228

    The Sadhanamala system appears quite visibly in artifacts of its time:

    114: Jamgon Kongtrul on Generation Stage; Marici

    115: Vajra Tara and Marici in Prajnaparamita manuscripts; Svadisthana and Vajrayogini; list of Marici forms; Vajravali in one thangka

    116: Tara as correspondences to large volumes of tantras:

    Vajra Tara and Marici as main characters of the Nirakara system; Parasol and Trailokyavijaya and the planes of Kamaloka; Humkara sadhana

    The next section begins an attempt to see if Ratnakarasanti's Nirakara related to multiple deities and tantra is a clear continuity of Yogacara from Asanga and/or about the closest we can find. In retrospect, this area is probably really the "beginning" as it turns out to be the definition of "Mahayana Buddhism".

    117: Maitri and Ratnakarasanti, Vikramasila and the Palas, co-intel and the Sham Sher manuscript

    118: Ratnakarasanti, Arya Guhyasamaja, lineage of Maitreya

    119: Asanga and Ratnakarasanti

    120: Asanga, Ratnakarasanti, RGV, Mahayanasamgraha, MSA, Bodhisattvabhumi

    Page Seven:

    122: Asanga, Nalanda, and the Guptas

    126: Yogacara Abhidharma

    127: Candragomin, Ratnakarasanti, Khasama and Vajrasekhara

    128: Yogacara, Dharani and Tantra, and Paramartha Parasol

    129: The Mahatmas, Yogacara, Prajnaparamita and Usnisa Vijaya recordings

    130: HPB on Buddhism; Eastern Nepalese Kirats

    Chances are that the previous ten or so posts may be "the beginning" since it is the subject of whether Mahayana Buddhism is the Yogacara of Asanga, and is this most faithfully upheld by Ratnakarasanti before the dispersions that would chiefly wind up as Sakya and Kagyu.

    The parallel point in Theosophy which is intra-Indian is that Adi Shankara is not much different from the real Buddhist Yogacara. At his time we would observe that what looks to us like the "pure" Yogacara line is getting swamped by "various debates", and so while it is held that Adi Shankara actually does rely on Nagarjuna, when he retorts against the, to him, modern Buddhism, he does not meet a proponent of Tathagatagarbha or Buddha Nature, which is the sensitive subject that Buddhism says nests within the Nagarjuna promulgation. This is what leads to the decline of Buddhism at the hands of his followers and then by royal suport.

    That is why it is notable that our thangkas of King Indrabhuti make the synthesis with Orissa clear and that he was a devotee of Jagganath.

    At this point with reference to the Yoga of Adi Shankara, as represented by the system of Sri Yantra, we would say in Buddhism, this system, as being Manipura Chakra with Varahi and Matangi as some of its top officers, and, generally being empowering to Kurukulla, fairly closely corresponds to what we might call entry-level Yoga or Nirmana Chakra or Body Mandala.

    Here is a bit more in that direction, and the power of Initiation related to Vajrasattva Yoga:

    131: Mahayana and Adi Shankara/Sri Yantra, Kurukulla, Chandragomin

    132: Some tantric iconography identifiers, female gurus, and Vasubandhu's Sukhavati

    133: Yogacara and Siddharajni lineages in visuals

    134: Padma or Lotus Family Tara and Prajnaparamita, Christian reprise

    135: Mrtyuvacana and Vagisvarakirti, two Tara books, Padma Tara; Aksayamati and Asanga

    136: Ratnakarasanti and Maitreya's Yogacara; Padma Tara, Sitabani, Varuni; HPB on Sunyata; new Jnanapada resource

    I am not sure I have brought in a few things, such as the extensive Ganapati, more on the Kirats, and Adbhuta Ramayana. And mainly we have more details for e. g., Pratisara Dharanis, and other specifics. What we do have is a great deal more grounding for Vajrayogini than if we copy a Pabhonka sadhana.

    Instead we are going to take a Gradualist approach with perhaps two or three iterations of the advanced version of Yoga:

    Triangle of the Inverted Stupa

    Fire in Buddhist practice is Tummo or Candali; Yeshe Tsogyal spent a long time on a mountain top without the presence of Pandara or Purified Fire. It may be quite hard to get, but, it is attainable.

    At that point we find that we are not doing Eight Limb Yoga, which places Pranayama at the beginning and mainly uses it as breathing exercises. We are using Subtle Wind that we got from the Crescent, and mixing it mainly with certain mantras and inner heat. This makes the third member of Yoga, which is in the sphere of Speech or Vak:


    Overall this is governed by Lotus Family.

    When this is guided by mantra and begins to accumulate Inner Heat, from the Crescent arises a Red Triangle, which may be considered Agni Kunda and Dharmodaya. Generation Stage is generally considered to involve the Flask Initiation, which, if you follow the teaching and find how it works, is done on a Dharani basis by:

    Varuni with Vajracarcika and the Inverted Stupa

    and in that sequence, tantric Bharati arises as The Vessel in the Fourth Joy or Sahaja condition. In a similar manner that Vajrasattva is Samaya of mental identity with Gnosis, Varuni is the driver of all tantric processes, and she will spawn Vairocani, who hypostasizes Heruka and the rest of the pantheon. Red Vasudhara has her Samaya being as Manohara--Hook, who interfaces with Jambhala, until Bharati arises, and she is intercepting Maha Sukha and giving it Sukha Vardhani, which is Increasing. The aforementioned Picu is Prajna Vardhani, whereas Bharati is a Sahaja condition experiencing Sukha Vardhani.

    And so that is slipping through what is supposed to be taught in Yoga Tantra, but, there is always a chance you might go mentally or physiologically well beyond anything you have ever experienced. You have to seal all the exit doors by Cemetery Yoga and find this Bharati like the Holy Grail.

    Since there is a bigger chance your physiological energy state will lag behind what you are able to learn conceptually, then like many of us, you would probably be in these first two or three yogas for a long time.

    This is the related subject; the actual sadhana is the last post on this page, and more of the Yoga starts the next page:

    137: Varuni and several relationships of hers

    138: Four Dakinis' Mantra, the Triangle, Carcika or Muttering, Varuni and Soma

    139: Varuni and retinue, Jnanapada and Generation Stage, Mahalakshmi, Sesha, and Nepalese recordings

    140: Varuni Puja or Mantra Skullcup and Fire Triangle

    Page Eight:

    141: The Third and Fourth Yogas, Pranayama and Dharana; Five Dakinis, Usnisa, and Mahakarunika recordings

    142: Kubjika Tantra, Laksmi's Flask, Ganapati, and Vajramrita Tantra

    143: Vajramrita Tantra and Vajradaka's simple Completion Stage; STTS conversion names; Seven Jewels of Enlightenment; Dakarnava, Vilasini, and sex

    144: Vajrasattva and Vairocani, Flask Lakshmi, Dharani definition, Manasa, Sitabani, Bodong tantric path

    145: Dakini Jala mandalas and Moods, Adbhuta Ramayana, Mantranusarini Sutra and dharanis

    146: Sasvata, Sasvatavajra, Karma Family and Wisdom, Sattvavajri

    147: Kurukulla, Samantabhadri, Sattvavajri, Dakarnava Chapter Fifteen

    148: Krsna Yamari Tantra and Vajradakini, Mirror Wisdom, Janguli and Tara Tantra

    Here, we get to the unique subject of Initiations according to Ratnakarasanti:

    149: Mudras and the Four Joys and the difference of Yogacara Sahaja (Self-arisen Heruka) from Hatha Yoga

    150: Risen Heruka, Mahamaya Tantra, Abhiseka Nirukti

    If you can figure that out and do it, you are nearly an Adept. That level of practice will bring you to the door of Hevajra Completion Stage. Ratnakarasanti and Maitri do not match the commonly-known traditions; this is a bit radical.

    151: Ratnakarasanti's Mahamaya and Buddha Dakini

    152: Kurukulla forms; Paramartha Parasol and recordings, Skeleton Arch, Annapurna

    153: Paramadya, Manohara, Prajnaparamita in 150 Lines (adhyardhaśatikā prajñāpāramitā); Ananta Mukha Dharani

    154: Dinky; Vasudhara and Chakrasamvara; Jalandhara's Vajrapradipa Hevajra commentary and Mahamudra

    155: Mahamudra lineage commentaries compared

    No, Ratnakarasanti did not discover or make up the system he is talking about. He perhaps chose to write it by selecting his own quotes from Lankavatara Sutra rather than attributing it to anyone else.

    Jalandhara more or less wrote it and attributed it to Saroruha.

    It is possible Krsnacharya has enhanced it further.

    What they are saying is simply omitted by others.


    Starting a collection of links to source texts.

    The following two projects are related to Nalanda University. First is "translations", which attempts to post the entire Tibetan canon over twenty years or so:


    In some cases, they also have Sanskrit for the texts. Due to their choices of English titles and so forth, it can be a little difficult to compare to old Indian sources, and of course the whole thing is massive with no guidance unless you know what you are looking for.

    Its cousin is the untranslated variety of Nepal's archives:

    Digital Sanskrit Buddhist Canon

    It currently has a little over four hundred texts, which are impassable unless you know what you are looking for.

    Rinjung Gyatsa, typewritten 1983 version made from notes taken during transmission

    Icons Worthwhile to See includes the Rinjung Gyatsa, Narthang Gyatsa, and Vajravali deities.

    It is a massive file which has to be magnified to maximum to even be readable. All of the icons are also posted on Himalayan Art Resources, but they are not all identified, which seems strange, and there are a few errors. There are errors in the book itself, which Himalayan Passages corrects in the case of Vajradaka.

    Bhattacharya's NSP--Nispannayogavali

    Samdhinirmocana Sutra 2020

    Asanga and Jnanagarbha's commentaries

    Obermiller's Ratna Gotra Vibhaga with Asanga's commentary

    Ratnakarasanti's Saratama

    Mahamayuri Vidyarajni Sutra

    Vairocana Abhisambodhi Sutra, Chinese without Uttaratantra and commentary

    Mahavairocana Abhisambodhi Sutra, Tibetan

    Vajradaka Chapter 1 and 42

    Vajradaka ch. 11 and 15, Subtle Yoga and subtle body

    Vajradaka ch. 12-13 Four Magical Females

    Vajradaka ch. 19

    Vajradaka ch. 7, 8, 14, 18, 22, 36, 38, Pithas

    Dakarnava 50.3, Kankala and Pithas

    Dakarnava 50.8, Vajradeha

    Abhidhanottara ch. 37, 51, 52, 59

    Gray's Chakrasamvara (Discourse of Heruka or Abhidhana)

    Krsnacharya's Chakrasamvara sadhana

    Samvarodaya Tantra 19/33 chapters pdf

    Samvarodaya Tantra--same in expanding text bubbles

    Ratnakarasanti's Hevajra Utpatti Sadhana

    FPMT Guhyasamaja Sadhana

    Vajrayogini or Guhyasamaja Sadhanamala

    Jamgon Kongtrul:

    Book Eight, Part Three (Generation and Completion Stages)

    Alex Wayman:

    Introduction to the Buddhist Tantric Systems

    Buddhist Tantras

    Yoga of the Guhyasamaja


    Yoga Nidra

    Highest Yoga Tantra (Generation and Completion Stages in the vein of Kalachakra and GST)

    Among the Puranas, these two perhaps have greater weight and influence than most:

    Vayu Purana Part I pdf

    Vayu Purana Part Two text

    Brahmanda Purana with Lalita Mahatmya

    Lakshmi Tantra

    Lakshmi Tantra text scan

    There is also a set of mistakes and misunderstandings we believe to have been published. What happens with internet is usually the same information is copied on an as-is basis. And so for example whatever Bhattacharya says is on Wisdom Library verbatim. He has a fair few errors, such as misspelling Vasumati Mahalakshmi and Marici in the set of Dharanis (Sumati and Mari). He thinks Paramasva is Hayagriva, and is overly prone to using color to determine the Family of a deity.

    Corrections for Himalayan Art's link names in Female Meditational Deities

    Bhattarika Kapalini: Ziro Bhusana

    Gauri: Pandaravasini

    Wind Horse is not really a part of the Sanskrit realm, but is its own mixture of Tibetan and Chinese, nevertheless I think it works great and you should do it, and this is a modernized Wind Horse or Lungta song in Tibetan dance rock:

    Again, this post is mainly for editing to make new links to the topics.
    Last edited by shaberon; 18th September 2022 at 06:47.

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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    Lol, the first picture, i know what you mean. I will come back to ask about a couple more things, but tomorrow

    I just came to tell you that i know what that first picture is.. lol, it goes across walls even, right? Does it *wave*in the air ?
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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    I'm a bit bothered that your first sentences reclaimed this

    Last edited by Mashika; 14th July 2021 at 06:39.
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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    Usnisa, Padma Tara, Sitabani, Sattvavajri

    On one single aspect, we have a quick, complete example.

    This is Sarvadurgati Parishodhana with all its ancilliary mandalas:

    1. Sarvavid Vairochana with 37 principal deities

    2. Body-Shakyamuni (8 deities)
    3. Speech-Amitayus with 4 deities
    4. Mind-Vajrapani with 4 deities
    5. Qualities-Chakravartin (numerous deities)
    6. Activity-Jvalanala with 12 deities

    7. Vajrapani and the 4 Direction Kings (bottom right of center)
    8. Vajrapani and the 8 Dikpala (bottom right)
    9. Trailokyavijaya and the 8 Planets
    10. Vajrapani and the 8 Great Nagas
    11. Trailokyavijaya and the 9 Bhairavas
    12. Trailokyavijaya and the 8 Mahadevas

    So the list is Omniscient Vairocana, similar to the STTS version which there is a female equivalent as we have shown, followed by Five Families, which are the top row of mandalas, wrapping down the right side. It is the same central mandala we have already shown as having a Dharani goddess equivalent. Here, Jewel Family receives the name Qualities, or Guna.

    After this, there is Vajrapani in various states or planes of Kama Loka, which is almost the same thing as Hinduism or for instance the planets are Skanda, Shani, Bhrihaspati, etc. And so this largely is translating Hinduism into Buddhist practice; and it is the framework according to which any Buddhist system is patterned. They add a few more details and teachings, without changing or removing this pattern. It may seem to be a simple list, except Speech is Pranayama or a yoga talent that, to a novice with aptitude, might take six months of daily attempts to even get the hang of it, and another six months of solid practice to produce any effects from it. And so then when it goes to "Mind", then, in the tantric sense, no, this is not the mind you know about today, and as you keep going along the list, you are no longer in the physical world.

    We have a fair amount of analysis on this tantra from English and Sanskrit, but, just to start, it for one thing probably has the best audio and visual samples of what is meant by Dharanis. And, this is also an example of a specifically-Buddhist class of deities called Usnisas. Most of the Sutras are about something Buddha said, however, the Usnisas are emitted telepathically from his head. If you were to study the main Vajra Pinnacle system or Vajra Sekhara, you would find that the deity Humkara causes the Ten Wrathful Ones to re-arise in new forms, including a Maha or Fiery form of one of these Usnisas who becomes known as Vajrosnisa. If we turn to the Dharani system, there are only a few female Usnisas which are actually known such as Vimala Usnisa and Usnisa Vijaya, who are Dharanis dealing with the same Death and Bardo planes that Vajrapani is subjugating by way of example in Sarvadurgati Parishodana. So these are in part funerals and this is really the "Book of the Dead".

    Part of this is very famous, Usnisa Vijaya is used in Long Life Trinity with a White Tara who is not Indian. Usnisa is almost always considered to be in Lotus Family and even hold a mini-Amitabha in one of her hands, but, for example, in Sadhanamala:

    Usnisavijaya 191

    Holds a Padmasthana Buddha but she is a Stupa deity in Vairocana Family.

    She is normal for her with eight arms, however when we say she is in stupa then it always means Atma Vidya or realizing her existence for oneself in Akanistha. So she is even simpler as shown below for more of a Samaya or invocative view.

    This is Usnisavijaya Dharani, and, if we do not really understand it, at least we can recognize Amrita and Vajra Kaya and be pretty sure we have the main exoteric article of Deathlessness or Bardo Cleansing. It must be among the best examples of a dharani. This works with Namasangiti, or on her own, or with Sarvadurgati.

    I have not checked it for accuracy yet, but, at least one version of the Sanskrit verse is on Gutenberg.

    Since on a personal level we are probably going to start with...simpler versions of her dharani, then, she has one of the only artistically-surviving forms that represents the class of Dharani goddesses as used in Namasangiti. They are simple two-armed forms with a Crossed Vajra because they are all in Karma Family, and then they have a personal item, which in the case of Usnisa Vijaya is a Jar of Moonstones. This is still depicted in a 1700s Kagyu:

    That may be the most direct association of a picture with a Dharani recording that we can get.

    For others the picture would usually be "not of" the Namasangiti retinue style. This is where Dharani modifies Sutra. You can take any of them such as Ksanti Paramita and pick up its definitions and so forth, but, in Namasangiti, it will correspond to a given Dharani, which then by definition if you utter the sound with the intent to feel and attain Ksanti Paramita, especially along with visualizing the devi, it is much more powerful. This is a very special instruction, which was found represented by a statuette set in Forbidden City, with no one left to understand it. But we can reproduce the majority.

    In a close correspondence to explaining "Sangha" = Padmapani = Avalokiteshvara and Bodhisattvas, here is another Kagyu where the same White Lokeshvara is with the Eight Bodhisattvas; however, over one shoulder is White Tara, and over the other, is this same simple Usnisa Vijaya:

    Usnisa is vital, but Buddha emanated another one that is far more thorough, Usnisa Sitatapatra or Parasol. We can say that Usnisa has to do with the crown center, at first and provisionally, however part of the act of Parasol is that she operates Vajradakini in the sense of not automatically meaning a dakini that is in Vajra Family. It means a strength or degree of a dakini of the subtle body when the crown center is upgraded, so to speak, and furthermore, this Vajradakini is Upeksa, which is the alpha and omega of practice in the following way:

    Most sadhanas utilize the same Four Brahma Vihara or Abodes of a Wandering Mendicant same as other yoga systems:

    Metta (love which is in all deities)

    Mudita (joy, Vajrasattva)

    Karuna (succor, Avalokiteshvara)

    Upeksa (Vajradakini)

    At that level, Upeksa is the resolve to never give up on the first three. Then if we follow the tantras to about the highest point they are meaningful to us, Upeksa is the most powerful of the Jewels of Enlightenment, and in Vajradaka's retinue, it is held by Vajradakini. Despite the names, she is not his consort. This Vajradakini is a bit like a tantric signal carrier, who appears, for instance, as part of Jnanadakini, but she is also an aspect of Parasol, which is attained by Marici, or that is to say the way to gain the Samaya being of Vajradakini is within Marici's practice.

    Parasol is magnamaniously hypostatic, whereas Usnisa is rather more straightforward. Nevertheless, Usnisa's Seed Syllable or Bija is a hypostasis. It is equivalent to the complete Celestial Palace of a mandala, and it is the Thunder at the End of Time.

    It is a form of Hum which is based in Vajra Family.

    It is a form of Hrim, the standard Maya syllable, which has passed to the hands of Cintamani Tara and become Brim and Bhrim.

    Then it is going to start with Bhrim but end with Hum so you get Bhrum which is supposed to be pronounced like thunder, a bit like ba ha roooom.

    This sound is therefor like the visual aspect which shows Cintamani Tara as inputting the Jewel which launches the whole Vyuha or Magical Array or Display, the point-moment of the far end of it manifesting is Bhrum.

    We have found that the normal Six Syllable mantra in a way "splits" into two goddesses:

    Om Mani Tare Hum

    Om Padma Tare Hum

    And what seemed very bizarre to me is that, although we can get a lot of mileage from the first, Mani Tare, being Cintamani Tara and her Jewel, there is hardly such a thing as a basic Samaya being representing a simple Red Tara such as Padma Tara in Lotus Family, although one of these is taken for granted in mandala retinues. There are ones that are really Kurukulla or Manohara, basic Sitabani, or possibly Cunda or a tantric form of Pandara, and there is Bhrkuti who is not Red, and other White and Green Taras. I have only been able to find a single match for one who is not incrementally-adjusted and is a very plain Tara to represent the Family at an introductory level.

    This is from the 18th century by Situ Panchen's influence and not called anything other then Red Tara, and says:

    “By the blessings and strength of the Goddess of Power,
    The three realms animate and inanimate,
    Fulfilling the wishes to posses power;
    May the four activities spontaneously arise.”

    Situ's teacher Tsewang Norbu who is pictured at the top was a hybrid of Nyingma, Kagyu, and Jonang, and is credited with bringing a renaissance of Shentong around 1726. Very nice, it makes a Shentong Padma Tara to go with Parasunya Mrtyuvacana, or modern and ancient names of the same philosophy.

    There also seems to be only one kind of scriptural source on one like this.

    It is from what Alex Wayman calls the most important one among the Tantras of the Mother of the Padma kula. Its Sanskrit title: Sarvatathagatamatrtaravisvakarmabhava-tantra.

    Rather than dealing with the full thing, "Rite for Subjugating" uses a simple Padma Tara, whereas the Mother is a large Eight Arm form. This "subjugation" is the Third Activity. It should be a synonym of "power" in the Tibetan inscription above. If we follow the teaching, this power is Wang or Abhiseka or Initiation, which is done by goddesses.

    These "Rites" Taras appear to be stand-alone, not retinues. You make an environment and do an alteration of basic Tara mantra with them. There are Four Activities, and then All Activities, one activity per Family. Some have Amitabha and the Moon in their hair. "Subjugation" seems to mean summoned from anywhere in the three worlds. But this is really in the place of the Third Activity, Magnetizing, or bonding or locking, Bandhaya. Although this Tara is described as rising gracefully (lila), smiling and laughing with darting eyes, that may not be necessary, if I do not think it means bringing anyone from "out there", but magnetizing my own inner kings and so forth, which are subconscious and stained. Her Japa in Lotus Family is:

    Om Tuttare Ture Ture Svaha

    although even this may have "two Tures", or, several different endings in various manuscripts:

    Ture ture D, ture B, tiire ture P, tu tiire ture LN, tu tiire T.

    The subjugation activity mantra is:

    Om Tare Tare Tuttare Hum-kara-puritasa-dig-antare

    sapta-loka-kramakranti asesakarsana-ksami Hrih

    So she actually has Akarsana or Hook there, not Vasikaran. It is not Kurukulla, but more like Manohara. She has the power, not the item. Perhaps more importantly it ends on the standard Lotus Family syllable Hrih.

    That is something to work with if I am not yet completely sure what subjugation of my own aura, initiation by goddesses, and/or Pranayama which is the special domain of Lotus Family, are. It is more of a Samaya or way to bond into the experience which has more intensity and detail further along. Bandha in some senses has opposite connotations such as "bondage, the opposite of liberations", but it is a very broad word having in many cases a Chain as an item, and probably more than half of its meanings of "bond" are more like the right idea.

    No Lotus Family member handles the Chain item. They seem to indicate we should develop the Hook and Noose first, while using Bandha as a kind of raw power that may be in a flower or something else that does not "show" it.

    This Tara tantra which happens to include individual appearances of Taras of the Four Activities does something noticeable with the well-known Mahakarunika Dharani. First of all in the popular form it contains an error which gives the common word "Jaya" in the phrase:

    Vyuhara Jaya

    but that makes, as far as I can tell, a meaningless word, and should be written:

    Vyuha Rajaya

    which now says "you are the king of the display".

    Tara spells it right, and, here it is in one of the first lines of Mahakarunika:

    Namo Arya Jnana Sagara Vairocana Vyuha Rajaya

    and so that is a statement along the lines that Sarvavid Vairocana as per some of the main mandalas already posted is able to teach about a grand manifestation which is rather made through and of Avalokiteshvara who this song is about.

    This Tara is doing a Lotus Family Tantra, and, while she is doing that, her other forms individually place each of the other Dhyani Buddhas as the king of the display, which appropriately changes that line to examples such as:

    Namo Arya Jnana Sagara Akshobhya Vyuha Rajaya

    Mahakarunika is part of Lotus Family tantra including Sragdhara and Bhattarika Tara and Padmajala or the esoteric Net of Avalokiteshvara.

    If I was to "incrementally adapt" Padma Tara to her next logical step, it would not necessarily be Manohara, who resides in Vasudhara. It would probably be another goddess who does have the Hook, Sitabani, in her most basic form, which is hard to find. As part of the Pancha Raksa, it seems to me they are "Protectors" for the simple reason of getting distributed to every household, but they are really Yidams or Ista Devatas or meditational deities that do something pretty drastic to the standard Quintessence that they are at first.

    Before we use it, a little about a major compendium that would work much better if I could just have administrative control over a number of other websites. We can read the text, freely, which unfortunately is a pdf of a reduced picture that you have to zoom in your browser to maximum in order to read it. Therefor you cannot search in the thing, and, it is really slow. There is a copy housed in Zurich, a project done by the Seventh Panchen, which was an addition of artwork to a basket of sadhanas that includes Taranatha's Rinjung Gyatsa, and Vajravali, and something else I believe Bari Gyatsa. The core text is about half similar to Sadhanamala:

    The Nartang Gyatsa is a popular compendium of initiation and deity yoga practices. It is believed to be a compilation composed by Chim Namkha Drag (1210-1285) based on the common initiation practices taught by Jowo Atisha. Like the Bari Gyatsa of Bari Lotsawa Rinchen Drag, the Nartang Gyatsa appears to be a shortened and condensed version of the Sadhanamala, a text containing several hundred deity descriptions. Both the earlier Bari Gyatsa and the Nartang appear to be shortened versions with a hand picked selection of preferred deity practices.

    There is an original version of the text by Chim Namkha Drag and then there are many edited versions with slight re-arrangements in the order of subjects and deities.

    And so it is published with translations as "Deities of Tibetan Buddhism", however, the origin of the wood blocks used to make the images are believed to have been used in Mongolia ca. 1810. Then I believe it was the next Panchen to whom HPB became familiar, not "in the school" but more as part of his "private retreat". The reason for making a printed book was because the Panchen felt that they were Icons Worthwhile to See, so, that is the convention why I refer to it as IWS.

    You don't have to read Tibetan, the art site has made the error of not following the book, which specifies which sadhana per image in order. So it is pretty easy to "fill in the blanks" and make certain corrections and on a certain level, challenge the text itself. Because there is an older copy of Rinjung Gyatsa, we can find certain differences on the same articles.

    IWS is closer to the Atisha lineage and begins with a large exercise on Seven Eyed Tara. All we are saying is that these "White Taras" derive from a vision of Vagisvarakirti instead of from the tantric system of Green Tara--which nevertheless is simultaneously present in this book.

    While it is correct that there are at least five "Cool Groves" around India, the Sitabani or Sitavati of our sadhanas means the one in Bihar, which is where Buddha originally taught the spell, and is the sole example I know of that is classed as a Peaceful Cemetery, part of a new set when one has so to speak burned the garbage out of the normal wrathful versions. And it remained one of the most important centers for teaching, initiation, and distribution of tantra, to Padmasambhava and to Sarma. I am not sure you can get much more "centrally located" to the inner meaning of the teachings than this.

    The usual chief of the Pancha Raksa, Pratisara, is a neighboring mountain deity which is not only another spot that Buddha taught in, it was used as a health spa resort and retreat center of several Historical Buddhas.

    Mayuri is a close synonym to Sabari, thereby encompassing forest yoginis incarnate or otherwise.

    The other two, Mantranusarini and Pramardani, do not seem to have earthly ties, but are more along the lines of Buddhist Mantra and Samadhi as subjects.

    Pancha Raksa Iconography discusses the basic form arising from Vairocana Maya Jala Tantra as recorded in Bari Gyatsa:

    Maha Sitavati, [with] a body red in colour, one face and four hands. [The two] right hold a garland and [gesture of] supreme generosity. The left, a hook and a book held to the heart. [Having garments and adornments] the same as the others.

    In Sadhanamala, each one has an individual sadhana before being assembled into Pancha Raksa 201. These are incredibly short:


    mahāsitavatī caturbhujaikamukhī raktā dakṣiṇabhujadvaye
    akṣasūtravaradavatī vāmabhujadvaye vajrāṅkuśahṛtpradeśastha-
    pustakavatī jīṃbījā amitābhamukuṭī arddhaparyyaṅkasthitā
    nānālaṅkāravatī sūryyasanaprabhā ceti /

    // ity āryyamahāsitavtīsādhanam //

    That matches the English translation, but, despite this relatively basic information, her appearance has been changed by the artist or represents another source, because it shows that her main item is a Sword rather than a "garland", or, rather, Aksa Sutra, a Rosary, and her last item is a Noose rather than a Book (Pustaka):

    All of these basic pictures in the yellow frame come from IWS and we will be referring to it a lot.

    The other thing one might notice is that Lotus Family syllable is usually Hrih, in Guhyasamaja their mantra is Aro, Pandara is Pam, but Sitavati arises from the syllable Jim. Doesn't exactly fit general information, probably has a reason.

    All of these have a Dharani which makes them considerably more intense than their tiny stand-alone sadhanas suggest.

    There is a GRETIL Mahasitavati Sutra, which comes from a 1937 Kyoto publication.

    It is incredibly short; it specifies that the location is a Maha Smasana. Probably half the thing is the dharani, which, aside from other clues, has:

    gauri gandhāri / caṇḍāli vetāli / mātaṅgi /

    What we have found is that "the Gauris" that are tantric goddesses in Dakini Jala were widely-known on a mantric basis already in the Gilgit Manuscripts, some of the oldest writing in the world, including in the very famous Lotus Sutra or Saddharmapundarika, as well as with Maha Mayuri. It has to do with the binding of Yakshas, etc., and converting them to Dharma, which seems to be a massive underlying principle of how the whole thing works.

    At a quick glance, she for some reason is related to Kalinga, appears to be a type of Vira Tara, and "borrows" a form of Cunda's mantra:

    culu nāḍi vāgbandhani /

    which is a form of "Cule", followed by Nadi or subtle nerves, Vag or Vak, that is, Speech, Bandha, or bandhani, she who does the bandha.

    Moreover, Paramartha Sadhani and Hiranyagarbha are among the rarest and highest epithets than can be given, roughly equating perfection of the Buddhist Three Natures of Yogacara to the Golden Egg.

    She has an even larger section in Dharani Samgraha, where the Pancha Raksa group seems to take up about fifteen percent of the whole book.

    It seems to me that with Padma Tara, there is a good one for Samaya to the Family, and then, this slight adjustment, Sitabani, adds an incredible Vidya Dharani along the same lines. These are more or less "wide open", compared to Manohara or Kurukulla, who are gated by Vasudhara and Tara.

    The Pancha Raksa are also set to in some way receive the process of the Vajri goddesses from STTS.

    From an OSU study of certain Dhyani Buddha thangkas:

    Identified with the practitioner, Vajrasattva is often considered the "sixth Buddha" of a mandala, representing complete enlightenment and reintegration with the sunyata. His vajra and ghanta symbolize the male and female aspects of this "non-dual" state of enlightenment. The bottom register of the Amitabha painting contains seven figures: the five Pancaraksa goddesses, and Usnisavijaya and Sattvavajri.

    23) The red, four armed Mahasitavati is associated with the clan of Amitabha. Her lower right hand is in varada-mudra, while the others grasp a mala, the Prajnaparamita text, and a staff with a hook; and 24) Sattvavajri, the female counterpart of the adamantine being Vajrasattva, who is directly above her in the upper enclosure [the damaged figure in the upper right]. Like her consort, she holds the vajra and ghanta, representing the male and female aspects of enlightenment.

    The smudgy Plate 2 p. 76 is of this one in Boston:

    The bottom row is Pramardani, Mantranusarini, Pratisara, Usnisa, Mayuri, Sitavati, Sattvavajri.

    At maximum size, I would say Sitavati has a mala almost like a string, and a text of small, folded-up folios, and so this may be a fairly accurate representation of the basic Pancha Raksa.

    I am not sure that Sattvavajri is his "consort", but, moreover, is involved in the hypostasis that activates him.

    Circle of Bliss has articles on a few of Vajrasattva's practices and finds one of them to appear in blue, where she is described as being in "a difficult posture":

    A comparable Nyingma icon calls her Vajradhatvishvari in this color.

    Pratisara is like a collision of Manidhari and Vajrini; Vajra Tara 110 uses several Vajri goddesses, same as do the Pancha Raksa. Varahi has more to do with Guhya Vajri and Vajribhuta. Nairatma again uses Vajris. None of them are Sattvavajri; something special happens to her.

    She appears plebian in

    Vajradhatu, the "Diamond Realm." Nine lotuses arranged in three registers support deities within the main chamber (kutagara). In the center lotus is Sarvavid ("The Omniscient") Vairocana, surrounded by Sattvavajri (E), Ratnavajri (S), Dharmavajri (W), and Karmavajri (N).

    These are Kula Matrs or Family Mothers in STTS, Sattvavajri being of Vajra Family. Our question is because they have the suffix "Vajri", this usually means an Object, that is, a compounded element, not an Element in its pure state.

    From a study of Ratnagiri Vajradhatu:

    The attributes of these female goddesses are
    mentioned in the Nishpannayogavali according to which Sattvavajri displays vajra and
    tarjani-pasa; Ratnavajri displays the jewel and tarjani-mudra, Dharmavajri displays
    lotus and Karmavajri displays visva-vajra and tarjani-mudra in their right and left
    hands respectively. This implies that these goddesses are none but the Prajnas of the
    tathagatas. But, it is known that they are created after the likeness of the tathagatas
    and they are known as panca-tathagata-swarupa as well as svabha (reflection) of the
    tathagatas (Ghosh 1980: 91). So, it is probable that these goddesses may be represented
    similar to the tathagatas where their right hand displays the characteristic mudra while
    the left-hand rests on the lap. If we take this point into consideration, it is likely that
    the Prajnas were represented as attended by four female deities, similar to their
    consorts who are attended by four Bodhisattvas.

    One does not have to dig far to find abundant references to her or these. In STTS 29, Sattvavajri Mudra appears to be accompanied by mayura or peacock plume. STTS study, another STTS study, original Sanskrit Vajradhatu Vidhi Vistara. Guhya Vajri mantras from Abhayagiri. Sattvavajri Mudra discussed. GRETIL STTS text. Chinese mantra bonding with Mahakrodha.

    Sattvavajri continues in English Sarvadurgati Parishodhana Tantra. It involves Vajrasattva and Sattvavajri, and places Vajradhatvishvari at the center of Vajravajrini and the rest. It is a bit too English, but seems to refer to Gagana-ganja-samadhi to produce the mandala. Its mantra washes corpses. At the end, it classifies Seven Jewels of Enlightenment, the Dhyanas, and describes the Pratisamvits as absolute. It says Offering Goddess mantras are eight Paramitas.

    Before Namasangiti forces us to experience Twelve Paramitas simultaneously in full detail, there are other sadhanas which focus three or some number, such as in STTS:

    According to Sakyamitra, the Symbol-consorts refer to the four Paramitas, i.e. Sattvavajri symbolising ‘perfection of knowledge (jnana)’, Ratnavajri ‘perfection of generosity {dana)', Dharmavajri symbolising ‘perfection of wisdom (prajna)', and Karmavajri symbolising ‘perfection of exertion (virya).

    I am going to guess Sattvavajri has to move because she is expressing the Tenth Paramita at the very beginning of a retinue to a yoga novice. It can't be all that real, yet, but we see its subject is exactly what Vajrasattva is interested in.

    She is also in Namasangiti, as a way of showing which principles are purified as the Mirror Wisdom is like a seed from which the others unfold, as shown in Names of Wisdom:

    Caksurupadivasana--Alaya--Adarsana or Mirror Wisdom, Sattvavajri
    Klista Manas, Samata or Equality Wisdom, Ratnavajri
    Vikalpamanas or Manovijnana, Pratyaveksana, Dharmavajri
    Caksuradivijnana, Pancha Vijnana, Krtyanusthana, Karmavajri

    Mirror Wisdom means can't be disturbed, and, interestingly, Circle of Bliss describes the visualization of union wherein:

    Sattvavajri is vigorously animated, while Vajrasattva is rock-still.

    She is different in Pala era stonework:

    Vajrahumkara is a three-headed and six-armed deity accompanied by his female
    consort, presiding in mandala practices of the Nishpannayogavali and
    the Vajramrtamahatantra. The Pala sculpture from Nalanda depicts a rare iconic
    form of Vajrahumkara and Sattvavajri. The main deity has six arms, in which the
    upper right and left hands hold a rosary and a bow respectively, while the second
    right hands display an arrow, but the left hand is overlapped by the female consort.
    His principal hands hold a thunderbolt (vajra) at his chest and a bell (ghanta) held
    in vajrahumkara mudra. His consort, Sattvavajri is two-armed, her right arm is
    resting on Vajrahumkara’s leg, while the other hand is in a teaching gesture
    (vitarka mudra). In the Buddhist context, this is an unusual pose substituting union
    (yuganaddha), showing the deities in an embrace. Her left leg is bent and raised,
    rests on the pedestal, while the right leg is pendant.

    Humkara is evidently a major wrathful entity composed of Vajrasattva transmuting Ten Wrathful Ones, something contemporaneous with Vajrapani in the Kama Loka..

    Now we will notice that her name, Sattvavajri, does something in the Yoga tantras and then vanishes from the field of play. This may also be shown in the Manjuvajra mandala with the unique Twenty-six Arm Cunda. We were given some Family details in NSP to the following effect:

    Manjuvajra emanates four Dhyanis, so he emanates Akshobya, as well as Locana and Cunda. Akshobya however emanates Mamaki and Sattvavajri. This information is a bit different than by default visual appearance. And since Vajrasattva emanates Manjuvajra who emanates Cunda, then, Sattvavajri is an Akshobya deity, and so it looks like here is where Cunda will commandeer Sattvavajri, and then you would get no more Sattvavajri, and a Cunda who has been hypostasized.

    Vajrasattva distinctly emanates basic Cunda because:

    A Cause Crown-seals a Result [in some cases she is crowned by him, or by Manjughosha in the Manjuvajra mandala].

    There are just a few deities who are crowned by Vajrasattva. One could say in STTS, Sattvavajri arises from Akshobya, but if Vajrasattva gets a little more powerful and blends with Manjushri, he can throw her into alignment with his self-produced Cunda. This is the only place we can even find this apparent path of Cunda, which uses her most impressive form, so we would expect it to be really intricate.

    Manjuvajra seems to speak two languages. In his first given mandala, he has Six Sense Object Goddesses, Rupa Vajra up to Dharmadhatu Vajra, and here it is clear that "vajra" means "object comprehended by rupa or sight", and so forth. In this mandala, Akshobhya emanates Manjuvajra, the Tathagatas, Mamaki, and Sabdavajra. Manjuvajra is the central deity and there is no visible presence of Akshobhya. Vairocana emanates Locana, Ratnasambhava emanates no Prajna, Amitabha produces Pandara, Amoghasiddhi makes Tara, and then the mysterious "Vajradhara or Akshobhya Family" emanates Dharmadhatu Vajra, or Mental Object Goddess.

    At this time, Locana is with Vairocana, and Mamaki is essentially "gifted" to Ratnasambhava.

    This Sixth Sense Object Dharmadhatuvajra is rather special, and is what we want to "click" with our Samaya Sattva.

    Also, here, Amoghasiddhi emanated Sparsavajra or Touch Object, related to his Air Element whose location is "Body--Entire Surface", in the sense that when air is still, we quit noticing it, but when it moves, we feel a breeze all over. And so Touch Object being related to this is an ordinary physical condition.

    When yoga affects the body so that this external attention moves inside and the Sense of Touch starts to have the subtle body as its object, then, Sparshavajra moves, she enters the center of the mandala and the Element Space and her name gains a more general meaning of "Contact", meaning either contact of sense to object, or, contact to a deity. That is the basic idea of how the Guhyasamaja process starts.

    That is the first mandala in NSP.

    In the standard Vajradhatu, Akshobhya emanates Sattvavajri and Vajrasattva.

    But NSP 20 has Guhyasamaja Manjuvajra like Namasangiti. Manjuvajra replaces Vairocana. It does not have any -vajra goddesses like Rupavajra, but does have the Vajris as in STTS. Because it is in some way centered on Vairocana, perhaps that is why it has this similarity to Vajradhatu.

    It comes from Shri Vajra Hridaya Lamkara Tantra-nama or a further explanation of Guhyasamaja.

    His retinue is mostly a standard set of Buddhas and Prajnas, Bodhisattvas, and Wrathfuls. However, his second ring contains standard Vajri goddesses in the cardinal directions, but then a peculiar selection in the corners. Guhyasamaja Akshobhyavajra utterly lacks these; its lineage is more through Aryadeva and Chandrakirti. Manjuvajra's bonus is:

    Cunda NE
    Ratnolka SE
    Bhrkuti SW
    Vajrashrnkala NW

    So he places Locana and Cunda in the northeast, so they would normally be associated with the eastern deity, Akshobhya. Mamaki has gone southeast and would presumably relate to the southern deity, Ratnasambhava, like Ratnolka.

    There is no Vairocana or Buddha Family in this. Manjuvajra is Vajrasattva, and so it begins with:

    Vajrasattva Family: Manjuvajra [and his unwritten consort, Sparshavajra as Vajradhatvishvari]

    He then emanates his own family, from the position of, or in the role of, Vairocana.

    Manjuvajra Family: Four Dhyani Buddhas, Locana, Cunda

    Then Akshobya emanates Mamaki. Ratnasambhava emanates no Prajna. Amitabha and Amoghasiddhi emanate their own, Pandara and Tara.

    Manjuvajra Vairocana has "sent" Locana and Cunda to Akshobya, who has "sent" Mamaki to Ratnasambhava, similar to the first mandala. And so Manjuvajra is showing that Cunda is also related to Locana (due to her direction), who is able to move between Vairocana and Akshobhya. Motion of Locana perhaps first comes from Vairocana Abhisambodhi Tantra, where she is Gold with White Clothes and is with a White Dharmodaya.

    What "sent" them is something about Purified Sense of Touch or Earth Element entering the usual sphere of Dharmadhatu at the center. Dharmadhatu--Locana then moves to Akshobhya. She is Dharmadhatu Suvishuddhi or all stages of purification of it.

    According to Circle of Bliss, Locana is only Akshobhya's consort in Guhyasamaja, otherwise it is Mamaki. When Guhyasamaja centers on Akshobyavajra, he is with Sparshavajra, and Locana is beside Vairocana.

    There are three principal lineages for Manjuvajra form of the meditational deity Guhyasamaja. The first is the lineage of Abhayakaragupta contained in the Vajravali text. The second lineage is that of the Yogini Risul and Nyen Lotsawa, no.44 in the Gyu de Kuntu set of mandalas. The third lineage belongs to Marpa Lotsawa and the text is found in the Kagyu Ngag Dzo.

    In this lineage, Manjuvajra peculiarly emanates in the Northeast, Yellow Locana, and Cunda in her Maha form, which goes with her regular dharani, according to Taranatha.

    Manjuvajra is the same as Akshobya Guhyasamaja; Purified Sense of Touch has entered the center: Manjuvajra's consort is Sparshavajra as Vajradhatvishvari.

    He has Cunda, Ratnolka or Dhvajagrakeyura--Banner, and then two kinds of Parasol, Bhrkuti and Shrnkhala.

    The subtle detail of this rite is that Ratnasambhava failed to emanate a Prajna.

    What happens is that Manjuvajra has kicked Locana out of any of her prior roles in the center in Buddha Family, and gifted her to Vajra Family. Consequently, Akshobya has gifted Mamaki to Jewel Family.

    He has usurped Locana because he has Sparshavajra or Vajradhatvishvari, i. e. he has started the tantric process of pulling his sense of Touch out of Air--Entire Surface and inwardly sensitized it to Prana and Space--Akash.

    This mandala has the appearance of some extra consorts, but, if you follow the intermediate directions of his inner ring, there is Gold Locana, Blue Mamaki, White Pandara, and Green Tara. The second ring starts with Blue Sattvavajri in the East, and then the intermediates have White Twenty-six Arm Cunda, Gold Ratnolka, White Bhrkuti, and Green Vajrashrnkhala:

    So we see the three goddesses in the same area, Gold Locana, Cunda, and Sattvavajri, from the descent:

    Vajrasattva-->Manjuvajra-->Akshobhya and other Dhyanis, Locana, and Cunda

    Akshobhya-->Sattvavajri and Mamaki

    I am not sure what to make of it other than this is allowed to be "Cunda of the dharani", same as the one in Namasangiti, but looks to be at a point where you are a good bit more familiar with her.

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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    Here is a good example of the strengths and weaknesses we have these days. Finding this will bring us right back to Cintamani Tara and then there will be some background for her.

    Sadhana oceans are written in something like "batches", and, there is one called the Speech of Pandita Purnavajra--i. e. the person that Taranatha listened to, which has been accurately made into an IWS gallery by the website entitled Sakya Sri Raksita, after the main transmitter. It is the case however that two of the sadhanas are not originally from Sakya Sri, they are really from south India, the ones involving two of the Prajnas, Pandara and Mamaki. And so for one thing, that tells us that tantra from Orissa in India was still being transmitted to Tibet up to Taranatha's time; Purnavajra is said to have gone there to receive it. Secondly, if we look at some of the Gilgit manuscripts from what is now Pakistan, they not only share the Gauri or Pisaci language as for example found with Sitabani of Bihar, one of these articles opens by saluting Lankesvari of Orissa if not Sri Lanka itself.

    Anyway, this batch which should be attributed to Purnavajra that is *mostly* from Sakya Sri goes from the most basic to some of the weirdest things we have.

    The original prints are at first misleading because almost everything on the first page is supposed to be collected in a single mandala with Buddha and the Historical Buddhas. At the bottom of the page is where IWS assigns individual sadhanas per icon. There is an individual Amitabha, and then the Bodhisattvas on an individual basis, and then multiple forms of Avalokiteshvara. Then you get the two Prajnas from southern India, and then it culminates in some extremely strange things. At least for the Avalokiteshvara, most of us could just go through the images and fairly easily conceive that they are shifting scenes of a story or event.

    If it was drawn better, you would first have a gathering of Tathagata Family, during which, Lotus Family makes a display more like beads on a rosary, one by one. Amitabha who does not "do much" emanates Bodhisattvas which are more accessible.

    As we follow along in our book, the site and the images are lacking what could have easily been added or done differently.

    The first Avalokiteshvara is a dancer, however, it is supposed to have Yellow Tara offering him a Gem; she uses the mantra Om Mani Tare Hum. What? Yes, pin that at the beginning of these.

    In dancing form, he probably is related to Padmajala.

    The second one is Eleven Face Amoghapasha Universal Ruler (Vishveshwara). His principal face is his own; the stacks are those of eight Hindu gods; and the top is Amitabha, Vayu, and Agni. Furthermore, only the right half of his body is him, the left is Pandaravasini. The published one oddly has Amoghasiddhi at the top.

    That one is Universal Ruler and Padma Samaya. According to Taranatha, he should split into male and female deities. He uses Noose to "draw in the wrathful", i. e. the Hindu Worldly gods. In Nepal, Amoghapasha is the male equivalent used in Sutra-to-Tantra conversion, is the noose to those who have an interest in samadhi, similar to Vasudhara of the system we are working in.

    The third one deals with Prakriti and is supposed to be embraced by Tara who has a hint of red. This one is Om Padma Tare Hum.

    He is actually a Nila Kantha (Blue Throat). So Pandara was in the Viraj or Ardhanarishvar or androgyne, and then called Padma Tara here and subsequently.

    So on what seems to be a fairly significant process there, Tara has been overlooked from the images. But then they add her in to the fourth one, which is White Sukhavati Lokeshvara who is also able to appear in a Red form, either one suggestibly having the consort Tara who is Om Padma Tare Hum. The previous images seem not to have any sign of consort; the one that should be called Sukhavati does. When Red, she is in his heart, similar to Guhyajnana Dakini, except she is opening a flower. In that case it does sound a bit continuous to the external Pandara form we will see. According to Taranatha, either the white or the red is Padma Tara. Both arise from Hrih. So there is certainly such a thing as Padma Tara beyond the basic level.

    Sukhavati is a Pure Land or Akanistha, so, the process has perhaps moved from a cosmic level into form here.

    As a deity it is practically unheard of or not found outside of Nepal.

    Fifth is Amoghankusha which is Hook and very brief.

    Sixth is Amoghapujamani with Nagas (which look human in the image).

    Those perhaps are in a descending order.

    After Avalokiteshvara is something that is not explicitly named, but understood as, Vajrapani:

    Sahaja Guhyaka Adhipati

    Guhyaka, literally “hidden beings”, are Demi-Gods who, like the Yakṣas, are the attendants of Kubera and guardians of his hidden treasure. The full title either means Kubera or it means Vajrapani in the way related to Utpatti.

    The next image is called Avalokiteshvara on the site, and may resemble a bunch of the other white ones in the distance, but it is really White Vajrapani and Mamaki, which should be obvious from the Skullcup:

    Mamaki starts as white with a bluish tint; union in this color produces a mass of bodhicitta, the Tathagatas urge it, and it causes the couple to re-arise darker and wrathful; or, he is, she is slightly peaceful and amorous. Then they reach the top of Mt. Meru. That is where we are supposed to transit to Completion Stage.

    That one should be Vajrapani and Mamaki:

    Mamaki as a single practice has a subtle body populated by Buddhas and Prajnas (simpler in RG). This one is said to remove interferences, and is among the simplest Vajra Taras like a Samaya being, and the next picture should be called Mamaki:

    Padaravasini is red, she has a red lotus that she is getting a gem from. She has Vajra Feet, a closed red lotus in her heart, and white scarves as upper garments.

    The website did not name Mamaki or Pandara, and the artist did not impress me with much of a white robe as Pandara should have.

    Pandara is mantricly similar to Simhanada Avalokiteshvara 131, a Mahakarunika who has Simhanada Nama Dharani, which is in Dharani Samgraha as:

    oṁ nama, śrī siṁha nādāya| namoratna namāya| namo āryāvalo kiṁteśvarāya bodhisatvāya mahāsatvāya,
    mahākāruṇikāya| taghayā| oṁ akaṭe, vikaṭe, nikaṭe, ikaṭe| kaṭaṁkaṭa kaloka karāṭavīryva| svāhā| āryā
    siṁhanādalokeśvara nāma dhāranī samāpta|

    She only uses about one line. But so far the only other way I have seen Pandara used in a sadhana is with Simhanada (Lion-mounted). It is in Vietnamese so I cannot say much about it other than the Sanskrit matches.

    Next, IWS has Two Arm Usnisa Vijaya, who emanates from the Usnisa of Buddha, this one being the same as we just used for the Dharani, followed by Twenty-six arm Cunda from Manjuvajra, and then what they should perhaps call Aparajita and Aparajita, who are Vairocana deities. Why are they following the best modern example of a dharani with one of the most elusive forms of an understated goddess? I am not sure. It leads to these Aparajitas doing a Swing Recitation.

    Next is supposed to be White Hayagriva with Blue Ekajati, both emitting deities from the tips of their jewels, Green Hayagriva and pale blue pig-faced Vajra Nakhi. Her mantric name is Vajra Mukhi, i. e. the conversion name of Vajravarahi in STTS.

    Then Red Acala is with Canda Rati; the Tibetan looks like it says gTum-mo, or Tummo gajema, so perhaps it should be Candali; but the mantra says Vajra-Candi.

    Then the Kriya deity Marici with Bay Green Horses would not appear to blend in, she is followed by Dhvajagrakeyura and Vetali, whom the site does not name.

    IWS implies Dhvajagrakeyura is a specialized form of Vetali. The Vetali should be in the middle of charnel grounds. They also did not name Hariti; she is orange, has a mongoose, or a hook and noose, and her five hundred children, and you project Yamantaka from your heart to her crown. Taranatha however says that Hariti emanates Yamantaka with a Club and Noose. The artist seems to have turned it into Jambhala and made him look like the principal.

    Cintamani Tara appears to have something to do with starting a series of Avalokiteshvaras.

    She is the quickest thing that comes to mind as a basic Samaya being of Jewel Family.

    She is going to give her syllable, Bhrim, to Bhrkuti, and her occupation to Taras of other names, meaning she does not really do anything else in further processes that I know of.

    Bhrim is the syllable of Jupiter, which has an important role but then it too is similarly "contained" and passes along a certain benefit. Firstly, in the Puranas, Tara was married to Jupiter, but left him for the Moon. This represents a change from adherence to outer ritual, to own-knowledge of inner meaning. And in Agni Homa Jupiter is honored but restrained. Originally, its color is yellow; but if you start with Cintamani, and see her as perhaps a weird yellow of skin, when you continue visualizing, it will get to the point the image stays with you without any effort. And if you keep doing it, then it will eventually re-arise in a very brilliant glowing form.

    This technique is the same in Vishuddhi Magga with Kasina disks, or, from the Theravada view, you could use any mundane object such as a coffee cup. If you fervently visualize the "real" cup, then it also would some day become a radiant object. That could drift in many directions, and so we are applying it to a Samaya being such as Cintamani Tara. Because we are not very good at it, the result will not happen for a long time when we have probably moved on to a higher form of Tara.

    So what looks important is the actual item she has. Hers is perfect, but, when it passes through us doing a yoga practice, do we just snuff it out?

    In other words, we have to have a samaya of the corresponding power in ourselves, which is why to try at a basic level first.

    Samaya also means "time", and so time spent upholding the samaya vow eventually translates into time spent in the actual presence of the deity, i. e. with its Samaya Sattva.

    With Jewel Family we can get a kind of easy beginning.

    They are Sentience, or Feeling, which are portrayed in the most basic way:

    They are sukha or pleasant feeling that is agreeable feeling, dukkha or unpleasant feeling or disagreeable feeling, and adukkhamasukha or neither pleasant nor unpleasant feeling. It is known as upekkha vedana.

    Vedana (feeling) refers to “One of the Seven Universals”.—In Pali vedana, is another cetasika among the seven universals. Feeling accompanies every citta, there is no moment without feeling.

    Even from the old Pali texts, it says there is a unit of Citta which always has at least seven attributes. This is the same unit that their clairvoyants describe as an astral entity which spins faster and faster while decreasing in size, and when it drops off the microscopic scale, it connects to an embryo in the physical world.

    And so these seven which are always present bear an odd resemblance to Skandhas which we are seeking to stop and transmute into Wisdoms.

    There are seven cetasikas which have to arise with every citta; they are called the "universals" (sabbacitta-sadharana). Some cittas are accompanied only by the universals, others are accompanied by several more cetasikas in addition. Thus, every citta is accompanied by at least the seven universals.

    Sometimes translated as: Kaya (because Kaya also means 'mental body', which are the Cetasikas).

    Perhaps better: Manomaya Kaya.

    Every consciousness consists of the 7 Univerals or Common Properties (sabbacitta):

    phassa (Sparsha--Contact)
    vedana (Feeling)
    sanna (Perception)
    cetana (Volition)
    ekaggata (One pointedness of Mind)
    jivitindriya (Psychic Life)
    manasikara (Attention)

    Well, we know the first synonym may mean "mental contact" or "physical touch", and so would be like Rupa Skandha, and so on.

    What would it mean to "stop feeling"? Upeksa at all times so you no longer notice it like external touch? Maybe, except Sukha is what we will discover as inner Bliss. It is the antidote to Suffering, which is Dukkha, and Buddhism is clearly about eliminating that.

    The opposite sin of Jewel Family is Greed or Irsya. The thing that would upset our balance worst and fastest is any selfishness. If we have that, we are probably going to get lots of Dukkha, or it is like a way of practically asking for it.

    I suppose some people have to be taught and trained there is a Sukha that depends on nothing, whereas Vedana is usually the second step of Dependent Origination, there is Sparsha or contact, then feeling, which is followed by Thirst or Tanha or Asava. So we want to relax out of that instinctual jumpiness which is like subconscious greed.

    It never goes away, we are just reverting the way the process works, especially from external chains to a Bliss that forgets them.

    The internal transmutation of Feeling develops the Wisdom called Samata Jnana, Equality. This includes loss of ego distinction. As samata is "smoothness" like a moment of a play where inner and outer meanings converge, Equality Wisdom is the imprint of practicing evenness on the learning path. Or, in the STTS decription, it allows you to sense others' suffering on an equal footing. With respect to the Tri-kaya, from Mahaparinirvana Sutra:

    In actuality, however, the reality in which these three are of an inseparable essence is the great, naturally present, uncompounded buddha-body of reality (dharmakaya), the pristine cognition of supreme sameness (samata-jnana), coalescing appearance and emptiness without conceptual elaboration.

    So that is fairly simple, it helps produce non-duality, and when carried forward in tantra, it means not only its own tendency, but, the use of All Families Equally. That part is not so easy especially if we don't understand them, which is another reason to have basic deity forms as "greetings" into a Family.

    The associated item is Noose, which does Pravesa, entrance, introduction, such as Enter the Mandala:

    mandalamadhye pravesaya

    The main Noose deity is Aparajita, who is not in this family, she is the power of the Buddha, which, in Buddhist Studies:

    "Power" corresponds to the Sanskrit word adhisthäna, which, in its Indian
    Buddhist context, refers to the sustained presence of a salvific force. This force is
    believed to follow spontaneously from a person's attainment of enlightenment. It
    is a natural consequence of the practices that result in enlightenment; for example,
    the aspirant's repeated, ritualized taking of the vow (samaya) never to abandon
    living beings.

    Enter the Mandala is really a specific stage to a disciple which removes a "Vajra Blindfold" and then you are perfectly aware of all aspects of it. So that is like a "Big Noose" compared to our tiny one which is more like an introduction to a samaya being.

    That is why Noose or Amoghapasha serves this role publicly in Nepal. However, what we have is the simple Cintamani as the herald of...so much stuff I don't know how to begin to describe it.

    The transmitter of the basic Cintamani visualization is Ratnaraksita, a Nepalese or Newari Maha Pandita who also transmitted Kalachakrayana and Six Limb Yoga. The Yoga is also attributed to Savaripa, under whom Vibhutichandra attained the fourth stage or Dharana in Kathmandu.

    By the same, there is:

    A Study on Ratnaraksita and A Japanese Translation of his Ganacakravidhicintamani [in Japanese].

    Ratnaraksita's Padmini

    Ratnaraksita's commentary on the consecration section of the Samvarodaya Tantra

    Explanation of Vastu Naga (cf. Three Mountains Seven Rivers)

    Ratnaraksita translated Akashagarbha Sutra and Surangama Sutra into Tibetan.

    Buddhism in Nepal says he left Vikramasila two years ahead of the Moslem advance due to a vision of it.

    IWS 138 for Cintamani adds an All-purpose mantra with Dhanam Me Dehi. Or you can replace "dhanam" with something you need. She emanates countless replicas which assuage the suffering of poverty. In Taranatha's version, the seed syllable is spelled Brim.

    Her Tibetan name is:

    Yid bzhin Norbu

    It is supposed to be the straightforward translation of Wish Fulfilling Gem.

    That or its equivalent is the first of Seven Treasuries, which is excerpted in "The Practice of Dzogchen". Seven Treasuries is by Lonchenpa in twenty-two chapters, later commented by Mipham.

    Sometimes I am not sure the publishers have their mantras right. "Dehi" mostly is just a corporeal body, or, a rampart. "Dhana" however seems to have a "family shift" kind of meaning. It is "treasure", but, not much like money, it is personal qualities and morals and so on up to the kind of pulchritude of beauty and well-being represented by Jewel Family, which has more of the meaning of giving away money. And then the Treasure itself is the domain of Lakshmi and quickly presents itself as Nidhi or buried/hidden treasure, which means by the Yakshas, whereby it begins to acquire a similar meaning as "treasure of Kubera". Although this may have to do with the legend of Venkateswara, again it does not necessarily mean giving money to that temple. Because Yaksha is an original theme in the stories of Buddha personally, in the Sutras such as Golden Light, and then in the tantras as a sort of judge of the graveyards, this is what it is getting at. And so that is adding Karma Family. According to Wiki, Nidhi is not explained or understood beyond the symbols.

    "Subterranean" here has the dual meaning of "interior to the human body". Yakshas guard secrets from us within the knots of the subtle body, and in Cemetery Yoga, Yaksas are, so to speak, the sentinels or judges watching for when one is really able to withdraw prana from some part of the body into the Avadhut or central channel. Yaksas also have sort of a dual meaning; they are a whole class. If only this name is used, they are usually dwarfish, stout, and earthly. However, they transit across the Kama Loka in different forms such as Apsaras, with some of the highest kinds being Gandharvas and Kinnaras.

    That is a hint of how Vasudhara works. We have about enough of a basic definition of Vedana and Pravesa to cultivate a Bhava or personal idea of Jewel Family which is usually placed in the South, Water, and Yellow. And yes, it is further correct to also call this a System of Lakshmi. For example, in the IWS we get a series that *should* show Cintamani making this Offering that causes Avalokiteshvara to go into a frenzy. The Agni Homa is quite similar, and so to speak relies on the strength of the invoked Agni to trigger a reaction by Annapurna, who, in the Nepalese view, is Lakshmi. But at the same time, the Buddhist Tara system also relies on Lakshmi.

    And so the "Yellow Tara" who seems to be presenting herself as the most basic Jewel Family devi easily has many skins or onion layers, she is not necessarily trivial just because the sadhana has no complexity. And when we go through the history and see how difficult it may have been to even attain the Fourth Yoga, Dharana, until spending time at the feet of a Mahasiddha, that is why I think most of us are not really doing it yet.

    She is called a Fruit Picker, but, exactly of what and why is she giving it to you, could be variable within guidelines.

    What she has is much like Kaustubha, mani, cintamani, or ratna perhaps being second to this.

    On the one hand Kautstubha is a male seed and a bit Lord-of-the-Rings:

    It represents pure consciousness shining in all its luminous manifestations. It was said by Lord Brahma, Lord Shiva and all other devthas that nobody in the universe except Lord Vishnu could handle the brilliance and magnificence of this "Mani", since it could corrupt the bearer by infusing in them with a greed to carry it forever.

    There, at least, is the sin of Jewel Family, greed.

    kaustubha which means treasure-of-the-ocean.

    yena sūryāgni vāk candra tejas āsvasvarūpiṇā |
    vartate kaustubhākhyaṃ taṃ pravadantīśamāninaḥ ||

    That by which the Sun, fire, speech and moon shine in their particular forms That is the form of consciousness known as the gem Kaustubha. (G.u.t.Up 54.)

    ātmānamasya jagato nirlepamaguṇāmalam |
    bibhartti kaustubhamaṇi svarūpaṃ bhagavān hariḥ ||

    The Glorious Hari wears the pure soul of the world, immaculate and free of negative qualities as the Kaustubha gem. (V.P. 1;22;67.)

    kaustubha avyapadeśena svātmajyotir bibharyajaḥ |

    What He wears as the jewel Kaustubha is the pure Jiva-consciousness. (S.B. 12.11.10)

    This total consciousness which is the “World-Soul” known in Vedānta as hiraṇyagarbha (golden matrix) pure, subtle and unstained is the chest-jewel named Kaustubha. This gem is comprised of the totality of the consciousness of all living beings, born from the causal ocean, and it is the enjoyer of material creation.

    In Astrology, Jewels may be of Heaven, Earth, or the Underworld; the first two heavenly ones are Kaustubha and Cintamani, blue and white. Kaustubh Mani has a deep blue colour like a blue lotus and a radiance equal to the sun. It was obtained during the churning of the sea. Followed by white, brilliant, and golden ones.

    So, this or these Jewels, and Varuni, emerge from the Ocean of Milk. The actual fruit that Cintamani has, is not really described. The Kalpavrksa tree that Cintamani plucks also comes from the Ocean of Milk, where it is said to have diamond fruit.

    The Subjugation of Maheshvara is crucial in any tantra Hindu or Buddhist, and I would say Ksira Sagara or Churning of the Ocean of Milk is possibly even more important in ours. What is important here is Amrita, Nectar of Immortality. This is what the major practices are working with, and it is for example with Mrtyuvacana Tara in Vajradaka Tantra. And like there is a Dharani process which is equal to Vajradhatu Mandala, for what I would call the actual tantric energy, in Nepal there is the symbolic use of Varuni. So further down the road, we are aiming at using Varuni to conduct an Amrita or Nectar experience inside us. Interestingly, the Theosophical Mahatmas said they had taught HPB to use the name Amrita in reference to the immortal, spiritual part of a human being. That is part of the idea, that eventually our bodily-produced Nectar will be potent enough to Transfer our consciousness to that domain. That is what the advanced tantras and the Homa are doing. At a Yoga level, we are going to work at getting a Taste or a Drop to begin with.

    That is a "real thing", or more real and more useful than anything.

    Correspondingly, the Tree that Cintamani Tara uses, will some day be the Forest of Kurukulla.

    It has an artistic history:

    Ornamental Kalpavriksha design was a feature that was adopted on the reverse of the coins and sculptures in the Gupta period.

    Kalpavriksha is also dated to the Dharmachakra period of Buddhism. The paintings of this period depicting the tree with various branches and leaves have a female figure painted on its top part. The female figure is painted from mast upwards holding a bowl in her hand. Similar depiction of female figure with tree representing it as presiding deity was a notable feature during the Sunga period as seen in the image of "Salabhanvka" in the railing pillars.

    The oldest known relic of it is from the 3rd century B. C. E.:

    The tree has a kalash or a pot full of coins, a sack tied with a string, a conch, and a lotus hanging from it, signifying the goddess of wealth or Lakshmi devi.

    Satya Sai Baba has a good response to these three, the Cow, the Gem, and the Tree. He says they are fruits of Tapas each with a corresponding Siddhi: Kalpavrksa realizes what you wished for, Kamadhenu transcends desire, and then Cinta Siddhi has to do with stopping anxiety or stopping the thinking process altogether, and then Ananda is won. From that root, there is not much way to call it "wish fulfilling gem". But you could look at it in the view of purity and perfection of form and maybe it is like that. Again when he says Tapas then to us it means cultivating the practice that Dharana would be a sustained retention of. And so if you have ways to meditate on Tara, you can do a whole lot of those, before you will ever have Dharana on one of them, which you can mostly train on a Dharani basis, if that helps to clarify the correlation. I can take this Jewel Family Tara, with those Mayuri and Lakshmi Sutras and dharanis related to yakshas, golden light, and other worlds, into Vasudhara, until eventually Vajra Tara would work, which again is considered non-dual Highest Yoga Tantra on the level of any of them.

    It will force a Quintessence since one of the primary meanings of the Family is Use of All Families Equally.

    Cintāmaṇi (चिन्तामणि).—A diamond. This was salvaged from the ocean of milk along with other precious items like Airāvata, Uccaiḥṣravas, Kalpavṛkṣa, Kaustubha, Candra, Apsaras, Mahālakṣmī, Tārā, and Rumā. (Yuddha Kāṇḍa, Kaṃpa Rāmāyaṇa).

    Cintamani is Jewel Family in Guhyasamaja, and in the Buddhist sense, it refers to different groups of jewels up to nine, the planets:

    Navaratna (नवरत्न).—According to the ancient “Jataka Parijata”, chap. 2, sloka 21, these gems must be high-born and flawless:

    Ruby (manikya) for Surya (Sun),
    Pearl (muktaphala) for Chandra (Moon),
    Red Coral (vidruma) for Mangala (Mars),
    Emerald (marakata) for Budha (Mercury),
    Yellow sapphire (pushparaja) for Bṛhaspati (Jupiter),
    Diamond (vajra) for Shukra (Venus),
    Blue sapphire (nila) for Shani (Saturn),
    Hessonite (gomeda) for Rahu (the ascending lunar node)
    Cat's Eye (vaidurya) for Ketu (the descending lunar node).

    So far, the most basic definition would seem to suggest that Cintamani Tara is handing out a Vajra for Venus, but, you have two things here. A whole lot of leeway as to what it actually is, and, a sort of pass-me-not stance with respect to Jewel Family. Because she is Tara, she is not hard to access because she responds to the same mantra. She just looks different and has a syllable in her heart. The Taranatha version is so small, it is "appearance only", arising in space, "standing gracefully in dancing mudra". The other version has a few mechanics and says she "stands in graceful posture". The simple version shows "fruit" and "Brim" and the second one shows "gem" and "Vrim".

    Now, if she was a Puranic descent from Jupiter, and, she gave us a Vajra, and, it was for Venus, that is what we would symbolicly want her to do anyway. To us, the Jupiterian Rta that is being dealt with has much more to do with natural law than it does to literal priestcraft running multiple rituals every day in a sanctified environment. At that point, Lakshmi or Venus is more effective as the Human Guru, Jupiter being for Devas.

    So I will post her next and we will have a simple Mani Tara and Padma Tara.

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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    Cintamani Tara and Golden Light Dharanis, Mayuri

    Here is a very specific example of a samaya Tara for Jewel Family.

    This Tara only uses the basic Tara mantra; Cintamani is an old name for Jewel Family. Taranatha says she should be in dancing mudra. In IWS 138, she is crowned with Ratnasambhava, and comes from the lineage of Ratnaraksita. You can make a samaya to her in this Yoga view. It also is written up in a self-generation sadhana. Most of these are. That one could be non-scriptural. Taranatha's version is probably the simplest exercise in existence. There is no beginning to it because:

    In Space, Cintamani Tara arises.

    She is in silks and jewels and plucks fruit from a wish-fulfilling tree (Kalpavrksa). With the other hand, she offers one to sentient beings, such as you and me. She stands gracefully in dancing mudra on a moon and lotus, and at her heart is the syllable Brim. The only mantra is the regular Tara mantra of Ten Syllables:

    Om Tare Tuttare Ture Svaha

    There is such a thing as Cintamani Chakra, which is not what this is. This is what Taranatha calls a "fruit".

    IWS 138 is the same deity, and, there are at least two reasons why there are differences. The older copy of Taranatha's Rinjung Gyatsa was made by taking notes during the transmissions; and, it is thought likely the Panchen lineage also added details into the texts that became IWS. This version uses a method that is common in Sadhanamala, which begins with the syllable Pam, which is either Padma--Lotus, or, Pandara Vasini as shown in the aspect of Viraj in one of those pictures where we found she is not shown. That one. But this more complete Cintamani says:

    From Pam comes a Lotus and from A a Moon, and on this from Vrim a branch of a wish-granting tree marked with Vrim, which turns into Cintamani Tara same as above, except she is plucking and offering a wish-granting gem. The Vrim at her heart is on a moon. She is crowned with Ratnasambhava and emanates countless replicas which assuage the suffering of poverty for sentient beings. You recite the same Ten Syllable mantra which in this case is called the Heart Mantra. She also has an All-Purpose mantra:

    Om Tare Tuttare Ture Dhanam Me Dehi Svaha

    That type of variation is common; it says you can change Dhanam for something else, and so in Tara's case, different phrases sometimes fall between "Ture" and "Svaha".

    Just a few articles later, we see she easily attracts the male deities Jambhala and Vaisravana.

    So you can see it has some room for thought into what exactly the tree is and what she is getting from it. You could say Lemon which is highly appropriate because Jambhala uses it. Naga pearl, or diamond, might also work. One of the main wishes it grants is relief from mental anxiety. I like that one because it doesn't take up any room around the house. It can follow up with a wish that grants inner bliss and wisdom. And this should more or less be free for everybody.

    An All-Purpose mantra seems unusual to me outside of the tantras. It may have to do with the presence of her reflected images. Later on it has to do more with "subdue all demons" and is done usually by Amritakundalin--who is a hypostasis of Ganapati--or by Khandaroha, the dharani-based female equivalent from Varuni.

    According to Skorupski, the translator of Sarvadurgati Parishodhana, All-Purpose or Sarva Karmika is related to Homa:

    In Abhayakaragupta's Jyotirmańjari this rite is called sarvakarmika / las thams cad pa.

    The article is in a subscription, but, it begins by saying Buddha appeared to be against Homa. There is probably something to that. What I have found that he actually does suggest is doing an Inner Homa. The same thing but as a yogic visualization. This can easily be shown with a different samaya being to Karma Family. Because we haven't grown up doing a Homa ritual, it just becomes another esoteric subject we study. But while we are here we should remark

    Ganapati acts as the Yajna, causing mantras ending in Svaha to work.

    Because going by formal Sanskrit, most Hindus would say mantras end in Namah, except for the exact moment when an object is burning in fire.

    Well, again, that would be to literally follow a somewhat mundane rule of theirs--but even a few of them will do it this way. Firstly, Svaha is Agni's wife, and, secondly, Yajna or "sacrificer" here is completely symbolic; there is not a priest burning incense or ghee, it is all of our mantras being offered through mental fire, and Ganapati carries the etherealized remains to their targets.

    Vajramrita Tantra hypostasizes Ganapati into Amritakundalin, but Buddhism also makes liberal use of him in his own name, in fact the Sakya Sri Raksita gallery should end on Yellow Ganapati.

    As further uses of this name:

    Cintamani is in Amitayus Dharani Sutra about the King and Queen of Rajgrha and a recurrent seven-jewelled tree on a ladder of meditations (on Kasinas) leading to Sukhavati.

    Cintamani is a relatively modern Five Dakini preparation for Chod.

    According to Cult of Tara on Sita:

    Similarly, the anthologies give several evocations of
    a four-armed White Tara, a revelation granted to the master Cintamaniraja,
    which simply did not catch on to form a school, and
    which was completely overshadowed in Tibet by the two-armed
    form revealed to Vagisvarakirti and transmitted by Atisa.

    In Sadhanamala, Sita does have a Cintamani Ratna; the "explanation", or Cintamani Kalpa, is found with Sadaksari Mahavidya, and Mantra Rajas Cintamani Kalpa is with Sukla Ekajati 128 by Lalita Gupta.

    In the Tibetan canon, a comparable sadhana's placement is in:

    Vol. 22. Sodasabindu mandala of the Kadampa, Jnana-Mahakala with Four Arms, Jnana-Mahakala with 30 Deities, Cintamani Jagadamara Avalokitesvara.

    Dharani Samgraha is difficult to work with; of course, it has a few examples of Cintamani and Lotus:

    Cintamanikalpa and Kamala in Ratnadhatu Lokesvara; Cintamani Dhara as Vasudhara; Grahamatrika that includes Bhattarika Mahadevi; Ugra Tara related to Pramardini; Arya Tara Bhattarika samaptam; Tara Bhatta rika Sragdharaksaram samaptam; Vairocani devi samaptam followed by Cinta mani lokesvara and Suvarnaprabha; Simhanada; Pandulavasini in Mahamegha

    So, Cintamani Tara is altogether brief, but is something like a holding tank until Jewel Family becomes meaningful to us and maybe we can see her better. Part of the meaning is the color.

    I had no idea about the Gilgit manuscripts until recently, but, it contains things that are of interest to us, such as they have Pratisara Sutra. They have material using forms of "Gauris" mantras similar to the tantras; I had thought Lotus Sutra was perhaps the earliest source, however, that turns out to have two versions, where the mantra in question is attributed to different speakers. That one is well-known across Asia. Instead with Jewel Family, we are going to turn to one still used in Nepal. They use a rather limited Nine Sutra library, and have hundreds of tantric works. So here is a look at one of around a hundred pages:

    Golden Light Sutra

    I also did not know this until recently, but since Gilgit is approximately Gandahar:

    While becoming a Buddha, he had however traveled to Gandahar, subduing Yakshas as he went.

    That really has to do with the main theme of tantra.

    But then this is more than abundantly clear in Golden Light Sutra, where it is a really simple matter that the Yakshas say, uphold the Sutra and we will help and protect you, if not, we won't, and you will just get misery, warfare, and death.

    We may think of this as true like a law of nature, as it would be important if the following words were true: Hey, a piano is falling towards your head.

    And so if you do any Buddhist mantras, it means something like so-and-so has ten thousand Yakshas and they are all bound by this mantra. But, if you were to somehow confer with them by other means, then you do not get this protection.

    The age of it cannot be determined, although it goes back at the very least to the early days of Gandharan literature.

    In this place we can specifically find "proto-tantra".

    The Sutra is of course thought of on the objective plane as if advice to a king, so, it sounds socio-political, but if you just take it in terms of inner meaning, then it adds four Dhyani Buddhas of the Families as we know them, refers to six elements, and really it is still Vedic because it is using a disguised Apri Hymn format by relying on the goddesses:

    Sarasvati, Sri, and Drdha

    compared to

    Sarasvati, Ila, and Bhu

    of the standard Apri format, which begins a Homa.

    That format is perhaps earlier and more direct than STTS.

    The main interlocutor in Golden Light is a goddess with no other known source:

    Bodhisattvasamuccayā (बोधिसत्त्वसमुच्चया).—name of a goddess: Suvarṇabhāsottamasūtra 1.7; 45.2; 167.8; 172.10; 199.5; 247.1; regularly called kulade- vatā [Kula Devata]; according to Chin. the deity of the bodhi-tree (Nobel, 247, note 2)

    Even the Q & A can do little but break her name down into basic terms.

    Samuccaya (समुच्चय, “concatenation”)

    The Sutra itself in the very last paragraph says:

    Bodhisattvas led by the noble goddess Bodhisattvasamuccaya

    daughters of gods such as Sarasvati

    goddesses such as Sri

    She is the only one who uses the phrase "led by", and, she is leading the Buddhist Sangha particularly.

    The only slight identification about the "unknown" Bodhisattva goddess of Golden Light Sutra, is that in the story of Ten Thousand Fish, "you were that forest goddess", i. e. one who, dryad-like, appeared as half of her body emerging from a tree. Bodhisattvas are not usually thought of as having "leaders", let alone a "goddess" of any other class besides another Bodhisattva. But, if we took this at face value, it would suggest a sabari, one powerful enough to collect followers limitlessly.

    Sarasvati of Chapter Eight bestows Eloquence which is not unusual, and then grants dharani which is very specific. She gives it so you will increase wisdom through the Sutra. In her dharani, she is Marici and Marici Prana. Both here and in her own Prophecy, Sri attained realization in a prior cosmos with what will eventually and now be called Jewel or Ratna Family, and so she functions mainly as an amplifier of this now.

    So, yes, to think of Jewel Family, while it is actually correct to think of the System of Tara as a System of Lakshmi for the most part, then, moreover, Lakshmi or Sri has enlightened use of golden light from another world, and a form of this light is the destiny of success in the tantras, as well as what Buddha recommended in an Inner Homa.

    In Golden Light Sutra is also another rare example of Kunti as a yakshi.

    Tantra is more or less just a loosened up, expanded, symbolic version of this Sutra; the "king" perhaps being anyone who accomplishes Trailokya Vijaya, and so forth. "Yakshas" are then arrayed more specifically and in different layers and organizations, and dharani is not just for "this" Sutra, but, is like a sidebar or parallel path to monastic discipline and Kriya practice.

    In other words, the study or subject of dharani is the main vehicle of conveying Buddhist Yoga into the hands of lay people. Formal Vajrayana goes as far as to make a non-monk, householder guru/priest system. But historically, the ability to have a home version or personal version of "high priestcraft" is what prompted Buddhist practices to flourish in medieval India.

    In Golden Light Sutra, Sarasvati is or gives the power of dharani, which is like calling her Fire by Friction in the Agni Homa, and is the same principle as Nirmanakaya, a mantricly-generated harmonious field. So a human being has to gain a Samaya under Ila or Vasudhara, while using this practice driven by Sarasvati, in order to, so to speak, conjure up Lakshmi in more potent aspects.

    Lama Yeshe has been heavily promoting the Golden Light Sutra, and he supplied the 1982 Rinjung Gyatsa where we first got many of the Tara explanations such as the first one given in this post.

    Marici Prana is an epithet of Sarasvati in Golden Light Sutra, of which the oldest surviving Sanskrit version is from Nepal. In Golden Light, Sarasvati expounds the art of bathing with mantra and aromatic herbs. After her presentation, she is praised by a Brahmin, who says:

    you stand on one foot, and are clothed in a garment made of grass.

    She is Lunar and has Eight Arms. This is, perhaps, the White Parnasabari of Samputa Tantra, part of the hypostasis of Marici.

    Drdha the earth goddess goes on to manifest palaces of the Seven Jewels. So here we already have a format of the trinity of an Apri Hymn, with Sri, who confers the Crown Initiation. Suvarṇa (सुवर्ण, ‘beautiful coloured’) is an epithet of gold (hiraṇya), and then comes to be used as a substantive denoting ‘gold’.

    Golden Light Sutra is in fact considered the Sutra source of Chod. If they say that, I would redouble the efforts about its Yaksha symbolism resembling the pisacis of the tantras.

    There is such a thing as Mahasri Sutra and Dharani which is different. What is ordinarily called Mahalakshmi or Mahasri Dharani is really from Golden Light Sutra.

    Mahasri Dharani as in the Chinese basket is really from Sutra of Golden Light; regarding this,

    "Reciting with the auspicious clarity of Sri Devi Deity and the compassion of Maha Cunda Bodhisattva the Dharani represents luminosity and brings good fortune to sentient beings". If one recites this mantra before mantra recitation or repentance, one will not be distracted outside conditions. One can also attain the Golden Light samadhi.

    Golden Light Sutra is gigantic, something like twenty-nine chapters. And basically it is aimed at rulers with respect to the Four Kings. So this is using only the lowest class of Kama Loka being. Whereas with Mayuri Sutra, which is large but could probably be done in an hour or so, it brings Golden Peacock and has the Kings, Naga Kings, Rivers, Mountains, many classes of beings and several dharanis.

    And so if China uses a Golden Light Mahalakshmi daily, they came up with this dharani song, and we can learn some Chinese:

    nā mó fó tuó。nā mó dá mó,nā mó sēng qié。 nā mó shì lì。mó hē tí bí yě。dá nǐ yě tuō。 bō lì fù lóu nuó。zhē lì sān màn tuó。dá shě ní。 mó hē pí hē luó qié dì。sān màn tuó。pí ní qié dì。 mó hē jiā lì yě。bō nǐ。bō là。bō nǐ。 sà lì wā lì tuō。sān màn tuó。 xiū bō lí dì。fù lì nuó。ē lì nuó。dá mó dì。 mó hē pí gǔ bì dì。mó hē mí lè dì。 lóu bǒ sēng qí dì。xī dì xǐ。sēng qí xī dì。 sān màn tuó。ē tuō ē nóu。pó luó ní

    namo fotuo = namo buddha
    namo damo = namo dharma
    namo sengqie = namo sangha
    namo shili = namo sri
    mohe tibiye = maha devi
    daniyetuo = tadhyata

    And we can get it because there is a sort of, not quite calypso, but maybe a lounge lizard version in Sanskrit with English (many more repetitions):

    The Dharani of Sri Devi Lyrics (Sanskrit):

    Namo Buddhaya.
    Namo Dharmaya.
    Namo Sanghaya.
    Namo Sri Maha-Deviye.
    Tadyatha, Om, Pari-purana Care Samanta Darsane.
    Maha Vihara-gate Samata Vi-dam Mane.
    Maha-karya Prati-sthapane.
    Sarvartha Sadhane Su Prati-puri A-yatna Dharmata.
    Maha Vi-kurvite Maha-maitri Upa-samhite.
    Maha-klese Su Sam-grhite.
    Samantartha Anu-palane Svaha.

    The Mantra of the Virtuous Goddess:

    Adoration to the Buddha,
    adoration to the Buddhist teaching,
    adoration to the Buddhist community,
    adoration to the great auspicious goddess!
    Like this: Oṃ (She) completes (pūrṇa) the deed (ka're, kama) successively (pari), all good to be seen, abides in great position, understands (mana) all good kowledge
    stays peaceably in great practice (caryā), in procuring (sādhane) all truths perfectly, and approaching great indestructible nature
    benefits (all) with great compassion, manages the great defilements, supports the welfare (of all), All Hail!

    The first direction after a very basic Jewel Family devi might be to the Pancha Raksa. This collection is a household item in Nepal. They are called Protectors but are really Yidams or meditational deities. Their chief is usually Pratisara who is usually in Jewel Family. Furthermore, when they do the weird Pancha Raksa 206, according to the Sadhanamala, Jewel Family has two members in the retinue. Historically this has been so troubling to artists that they always paint it wrong. But if we study the symbolism, it really mostly is about Jewel Family and Amrita and appears equivalent to the majority of Generation Stage or Pranayama.

    So these are very open, use them off the page, whereas Vasudhara is still a bit temple-doorish, which might make more sense when all of this makes sense. And so we are going to make a close correspondence to Golden Light Sutra with the Pancha Raksa member Mayuri.

    Mahamayuri Vidyrajni Sutra is only around thirty pages.

    The continuity of Mahamayuri Sutra to Golden Light is almost transparent, because Buddha is the Peacock King Suvarnaprabhasa (i. e., Golden Light), Mayuri Vidyarajni is his attendant or queen, to the interior of whose dharani, she is Hiranya Garbhe. So in this very early example of Buddhist Dharani craft is the very subject of the overly-male based explanations having been replaced by female via mantra. Pratisara and Sitabani are in the Sutra, so is Stambhani and Samantabhadri. The two-fifths of the Pancha Raksa that do not have folk origins do not seem to be here. Peacock King was said to use his mantra at dawn and dusk. Narayani seems to be the important family achieved here. Female Marici appears in it as a Raksasi on the same line with Varuni and Kali; there are multiple rings of these who guard a Bodhisattva in the womb.

    To that Womb should closely follow the metaphors Blue Lotus and Generation Stage.

    It may be literal but it is also psychic and physiological.

    And it makes the pattern of casting retinues who are bound by these spells.

    In Mahamayuri Vidyarajni, after the seventy-three raksasis is a dharani to insure longevity of a hundred years and provide extensive boundaries. It includes the Gauris, such as Janguli, Candali, etc., and towards the end has Pratisara and Sitabani. It does not have the full Pancha Raksa, but, those two are considered to be related to places, and Mayuri is perhaps the wilderness overall, or at least is an ancient sabari.

    If Cintamani releases her item and passes it along, there are certain tracks.

    Vasudhara has a Cintamani, Pratisara does, and Lokesvara.

    In Sadhanamala, with Sadaksari Mahavidya, Sita Tara, and White Ekajati.

    In her large dharani, Pratisara is called Savari and Cintamani Mahavidya. One of her descriptions says:

    samantajvālā mālā viśuddhi sphuritacintāmaṇi mahāmudra |

    A few of those are regular epithets, All-Good Blaze Rosary Purity, and then Mahamudra is a very famous subject where we are certainly going with this. She is using the lens of a Cintamani which has been conjoined with a quality that might take some contemplation as to what it was to start with, let alone what it is now:

    Sphurita (स्फुरित).—p. p.

    1) Trembling, throbbing.

    2) Shaken.

    3) Glittering, shining.

    4) Unsteady.

    5) Swollen.

    6) Manifested, displayed; तत उदयगिरोरिवैक एव स्फुरितगुणद्युति- सुन्दरः कलावान् (tata udayagirorivaika eva sphuritaguṇadyuti- sundaraḥ kalāvān) Māl.2.1.

    -tam 1 A throb, palpitation, tremor; (baṭuḥ) पुनर्विवक्षुः स्फुरितोत्तराधरः (punarvivakṣuḥ sphuritottarādharaḥ) Ku.5.83.

    2) Agitation or emotion of the mind.

    3) Flash, gleam; विद्यु- द्दामस्फुरितचकितैर्यत्र पौराङ्गनानाम् (vidyu- ddāmasphuritacakitairyatra paurāṅganānām) Me.27.

    4) Sudden appearance.

    Mayuri in the first Pancha Raksha set is the most significant one, Green with Six Arms and is called Maha Mayuri Vidyarajni. And so that may seem contradictory if talking about Golden Light. But let us consider for a moment she is like traffic between Karma and Jewel Families. She appears in other retinues besides this one. With Varada Tara 91:

    mahāmāyūrīṃ pītāṃ vāmetarakarayor mayūrapicchikācāmaradhāriṇīṃ

    (Pita, Yellow, with a Plume and Camara or Fly-whisk, same item as used by Cauri)

    with Sita Tara 104:

    mahāmāyūrīṃ priyaṅguśyāmāṃ dvibhujāṃ vāmena māyūrapicchadharāṃ dakṣiṇena cāmaradharāṃ

    (Priyangu, a light green fruit normally, which here is syama or dark)

    with Mahasri Tara 116:

    mahāmāyūrīṃ priyaṅguśyāmāṃ dvibhujāṃ vāmena māyūrapicchadharāṃ dakṣiṇena cāmaradharāṃ

    On her own or in Pancha Raksa, she is Harita, a light green like new vegetative shoots.

    According to Iconography of the Hindus, Buddhists, and Jains,

    Mahamayuri very frequently appears in a triad
    with Sitatara and Marici. In another triad she
    appears with Janguli and Ekajata. As Queen of
    the Magic Art, she is shown three-faced and six-
    handed or eight-handed. In Nepal she is looked
    upon as chief of the Five Protectresses (Pancha-

    Following what we have mentioned, then yes, Maha Sri is a Green Lakshmi who is really the higher plane or Pure Land or Sambhogakaya we have in mind. A large part of the popularity of the Avalokiteshvara Sukhavati teaching is because it is said to be an easy Pure Land to enter. However Six Limb Yoga Tara is the easiest. That makes it the best and most direct answer to the issue of Death. Possibly the best translation of Sampatti of this degree is called Suspended Animation. It is a known tradition in Tibet where they speak of one or two examples per century of someone "leaving their bodies" for a period of a few days up to months, called Delok. And during this time they are supposed to have clarity in the planes of what is to us the afterlife. One of the more recent ones from the early twentieth century was a girl of only sixteen who did it against the wishes of her authorities. She entered Tara's Forest of Turquoise Leaves called Yulokod in Tibetan, where Twenty-one Praises of Tara was sung in Sanskrit.

    So that has to do with Karma Family and Mayuri is in it, but, sometimes she is not, and in the weird PR206, she comes into Jewel Family in a larger Eight Arm form:

    māyūrī pītavarṇā sūryyamaṇḍalālīḍhā sattvaparyyaṅkinī
    trimukhā trinetrā aṣṭabhujā ratnamukuṭinī sarvvābharaṇabhūṣitā
    tasyā dakṣiṇaprathamabhuje varadaṃ dvitīye ratnaghaṭadharā tṛtīye
    mayūrapicchaṃ tṛtīye ghaṭopari viśvavajraṃ caturthe ratnadhvajam,
    tato mūlmukhaṃ pītaṃ dakṣiṇe kṛṣṇaṃ vāme raktam, aśoka-
    vṛkṣopaśobhitā tatpārśvasthitā,

    Significantly, she is followed by Mantranusarini who has expanded into a White Twelve Arm form which is also crowned by Ratna, which has been painted or drawn red in almost every case. So Jewel Family has done something relatively drastic to a standard mandala here.

    Pratisara is pre-eminent in Jewel Family; Buddha says she is Mamaki. But that is not enough, because Varuni is Mamaki; so is Khandaroha; Guhyeshvari. Mamaki is the querent in Vajramrita Tantra. She is conducting some kind of insanely vast alchemy that is almost all about Amrita. If that were easy for people, everyone would do it every day. Her name alone structures most of the yoga-to-tantra practices.

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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    Karma Family, Mahattari Tara, Blue Lotus, Twenty-one Taras

    Before getting specifically to this, I am going to extract from Short Red Tara practice, a treasure hidden by Yeshe Tsogyal and transmitted through H. H. Sakya Trizin. It has several good sections, however, they are really practicing Kurukulla, and, it is, in a certain sense, "for" a center in Oregon where the lineage is transmitted. But the commentary has many basics which are true for Tara generally.

    The basic mode of Green Tara is in dealing with Eight Fears:

    In our own world system she manifested as 'Tara' through the compassion of Avalokitesvara (Tib. Kyan Razig), and here she made the particular vow to liberate beings from eight great fears that are the projections of negativities within the mind. These are fear of elephants as the projection of ignorance; fear of fire as the projection of anger; lions as pride; robbers as the projection of false views; fear of floods as the projection of avarice; snakes as jealousy; fear of handcuffs (imprisonment) as the projection of miserliness; and fear of demons as the projection of doubt. These categories of fears, however, are traditional delineations and can be understood as all the fears and phobias that arise from our habit of attachment and aversion. Ultimately Tara offers liberation from any fear of samsaric suffering. For this reason she is called the Swift Savioress.

    Like many people I suppose, this is mostly how I got into Tara, was really for the alleviation of suffering, since there was nothing she could tell me about how to do Suksma Yoga. Too late. But it meant nothing to me at the time if there was a Lotus Family. And Green Tara in Lotus or Karma Family can be almost indistinguishable. If she has no Cinha or Family Symbol then she probably looks about the same either way.

    However even though there was nothing for her to teach me physiologically, in Karma Family, she is equivalent to the Sixth Yoga, Samadhi. We or even I may think we know what this is, but, we do not, in the way she means it. Here is a clue. The Fifth Yoga is Sadhana which means "spiritual practice" and so it seems if I made a novice attempt at the most basic Cintamani Tara, that would be it. Well, not really. It has an inner meaning. It means that you are participating fully in Luminous Mind. This is the presence of the male seed or Knower. I can train this and practice mostly by Taras and other goddesses of Six Families on a dharani basis rather proliferously, but, at a certain point, there has to be some form of maleness. At that point you have Union and looking at Vajradaka as such a male, then, the Seven Jewels of Enlightenment arise with the male as Smrti which is Sadhana, then samadhi is a sixth goddess still "above" him, and then finally above her is Upeksa.

    Meditation by most peoples' definitions lacking this tantric energy is more like the Second Yoga which is Dhyana.

    The Six Yogas are almost three pairs:

    Dhyana (meditation generally or perhaps equivalent to the entire Eight Limb system)

    Pranayama (mantra and tantra)
    Dharana (retention with experience of lights)

    Sadhana (becoming similar to major initiations and Abhisambodhis with Luminous Mind)

    That is the same with Tara as it is in the early Guhyasamaja Tantra and the late Kalachakra Tantra. Except that Karma Family Tara herself is the Power of Samadhi generally speaking. We are probably best off to just tell ourselves we don't know what it is. If we train in meditation, we are probably doing what they consider Dhyana, and if you are actually able to do Pranayama, you would know it, because it is palpable. This is mainly what we are getting at by emphasizing Yoga Tantra and Generation Stage.

    The Red Tara commentary uses a synonym for Pranayama:

    We visualize the luminous form of the Noble Tara in the space in front of us. She is the brilliant ruby red of the Padma (lotus) family deities, red signifying desire in its most exalted aspect, the desire that all beings find liberation. The Padma family deities are associated with enlightened speech.

    It was originally called Dharma, or, i. e. Dharma Speech, reality arising through mantra.

    And they have a few remarks towards what is meant by Yoga view:

    Tara is visualized as an effulgent light body, saturated with rich color, sparkling with brilliant jewels, surrounded by an orb of intense rainbow-light radiance. There is not a single particle of solidity in all this, yet we should develop a sense of Tara's presence which is as real as another person in the same room with us. At first this may be difficult. Sometimes our minds are too distracted to visualize at all, or our sense of Tara's appearance is so dim that she seems faded, out of focus, with details missing. When this happens we should concentrate on some aspect we hold firmly -- her face or a hand gesture, or an ornament whose significance intrigues us. Or, we might focus on her presence within her powerful field of radiance, and her emanation of purifying light and positive qualities. The important point is to bring our minds back to one aspect of practice or another. We want to hold a clear visual image of Tara so we study artistic representations, or we visualize some part of her form until it is very clear in our mind's eye. We want to understand her qualities so we seek teachings on and contemplate Tara's symbolic aspects. At the time of meditation, however, we want to expand what we know conceptually into a non-dual state of awareness.

    This is not a violent purge of demons or an abrupt casting out of negativity. Rather they "evaporate like dew in the morning sun." When this short book was compiled from the extensive Red Tara sadhana, Chagdud Tulku was very specific about this image, and in doing the practice one realizes its meaning is profound beyond just the beauty of poetic expression.

    One also pays homage to the "pureland of the conquerors" as Tara's spontaneous display of emptiness/clarity inseparable. This display is experienced by those who have conquered delusion and achieved pure perception.

    Of the two levels of practice contained within the book, the first, visualization of Tara in the space in front of oneself, does not require initiation. The second, visualization of oneself as Tara, does require initiation. Initiation formally transmits the blessing of the lineage and ripens one's mind to. realize the qualities of the practice at all levels.

    And so it is entirely likely that if you are not from Oregon that you may be more familiar with Green Tara who "is" this same Padma Tara but associated with the Mahakarunika Dharanis. But with basically the same appearance, she has a different identity in Karma Family, usually in what I call "Tara pose" which is with one foot hanging out.

    Mahattari Tara has an "adjustment" to Tara's pose which is more meditational or Vajra Feet:

    Mahattari is a type of varada Tara with a flaming halo, seated in Vajra Paryanka.

    She is alone in the sadhana, but, is a bit "archaeolgicly mystifying" due to her appearance in a retinue:

    There is a broken image of her at Ratnagiri with a Pancha Jina centered on Amoghasiddhi, along with Avalokiteshvara and Manjugosha. She has Mayuri, Janguli, Akosakanta Marici, and Ekajati, Varada Tara's same four companions, and same as Mahasri's, ca. 10th century. In Sadhanamala, her foot posture and varada gesture is also used by White Mrtyuvacana, and Nagarjuna's two armed White Vajra Tara.

    Mahattari Tara is a different "kind of woman"...I was puzzled when I saw "Lady of the Bedchamber" but it is actually one of many of the kinds of Stri (Women) of a Royal Harem which is actually number thirteen and translated as Matron. The Mahattarika definition for some reason refers to Kadambari, a special kind of wine relished by Balarama, made from water accumulated in a Kadamba tree, with honey.

    Mahattari has maybe two relics at Ratnagiri. At Acutrajpur, she has vajra feet, flaming halo, varada mudra, holds one lotus. Flowing clothing, richly adorned. She changes but not much, for example, sattvaparanyaka. So this definitely is an individual name that was prominent in her Sanskrit system and now is pretty well submerged.

    Her major broken Ratnagiri image is hard to distinguish from Varada Tara or Mahasri because of the companions. It is an Amoghasiddhi All Buddhas Tara with Janguli, Marici, Ekajata, Mayuri. Also with Avalokiteshvara and Manjugosha. It is still a vajra feet, varada mudra, one lotus, and with lavish clothing. There are lion supports (Simhanada) and people reading a book, The halo is plain. She is not Black but Syama on a moon and lotus cushion.

    Here is an old Archeological Survey assessment of a Mahattari statue from stupa 189 at Ratnagiri: "Dressed in a sati and chest-cloth, Mahattari Tara (pi. XCVI A) is seated in the vajra-paryahkasana attitude on a visva-padma with her right palm, in the vara-mudra, resting against the knee and raised left hand holding the stalk of an utpala. She is adorned with valayas, beaded armlets with a triangular piece, a beaded necklace of the chhannavira type, ear-rings and a mukuta with three ornate triangular pieces. Tied by a string, the major part of the hair is arranged on the crown in the form of a bun, while a few coiled locks fall on the shoulders. Behind the head is the elongated halo, pointed at the crown, on either side of which is a garland-bearing vidyadhari flying through clouds towards the goddess."

    Outside of Nepal, we have found Mahattari Tara with the title "Varendra Vana Iccha", and, as a potent figure in Kubjika Tantra and Soundarya Lahiri without the "Tara" appellation.

    Concerning how her name may be used, in Sadhanamala, the closest thing to Arya Tara is Dhanada (invoked that way), then Durgottarini, then Arya Tara Bhattarika, Mahacina; or Vasyadhikara or Vistara.

    Mahattari however in Sadhanamala is defined as: this ritual, Saptavidhanuttarapuja. It has Prasanna, Sukla, and Dhanada in relatively prominent placement, which are among the Sadhanamala Taras that are blotted out by the modern systems. Furthermore, if we thought there might be a goddess-based parallel of the male-based system "in the schools", these proceed from:

    Arya Tara Vajradhatu Mandala

    On further analysis, this is a "System of Tara and Vajrayogini" which can supplant the more common Chakrasamvara as the Buddhist part of a Homa.

    Mahattari is a Samaya Sattva who holds a Flaming Blue Lotus while she performs a Blue Lotus Mudra. The mudra in its turn is shared by certain other deities, such as Sita and Mahasri Tara. That is what this exercise is about.

    Sapta Vidh Anuttara Puja is a Seven Branch Unsurpassable Puja, and, in Buddhism, "puja" or "rite" has the primary meaning of "Inner Offerings". It is only a six-page study of the Samadhi of Tara, which says it takes place after Vajrasattva and Gurumandala or, i. e. Guru Yoga.

    An alternate spelling of her name is:


    Mahat or Mahant is Universal Soul, or, it may also refer to Maha Tattva, which in Vajradaka Chapter Sixty-one is generically referred to as the Five Dakinis.

    In the Kubjika system, it has to do with the actual realization and practice of the tantric principles, whereas we are sort of front-loading this whole conceptual teaching into a basic deity. And then the idea is that she summons another Tara who summons another Tara who actually is from Akanistha. Superficially, this may appear to be just a change in scenery, but, if we look at this in the sense of Inner Homa, it can also mean she is taking us out of this world and into Akanistha. Then it concludes with Prasanna and Makuta or Crown Ceremony.

    The exercise does not give all the detail. It works with it. Due to the presence of Prasanna, this is roughly equivalent to the Samputa Tantra. It also invokes Sri Arya Tara, and Mahasri is the one evident from Sadhanamala intended as the Akanistha or Sambhogakaya being; she has a Golden Lion and the four companions, Mayuri, Janguli, Marici, and Ekajati. So that is why her Sutra and Dharani is not the same as the more general one of Lakshmi. Mahasri does not have a mandala, it is just a group, and could perhaps most simply be described as "entrance to the higher plane" which is the same in life or death.

    She uses Purity Mantra and Ten Syllable Tara Mantra, holds a Flaming Blue Lotus, and does what looks like Blossoming Blue Lotus or Vikacotpala Mudra, all of which is the Third Activity or Bandhaya applied to Samaya Mudra. She is Syama or Dark Green.

    The article is fairly brief, and so we will have to bring up Guru Yoga first, and then link some commentary.

    There are virtually no images of Mahattari, as almost every Green Tara has the extended leg. Vajra Feet Taras are relatively rare and may have reason to be defined as another. This piece is unidentified, but, is from Swat Valley, Pakistan--which means it must be rather old--and most likely is Mahattari due to the Halo and Vajra Feet:

    compared to an identified Nepalese one:

    Choying Dorje however has an entire set of Vajra Feet Taras, which portrays a lone goddess being approached nearer and nearer by devotees, until they are pouring initiation pitchers on her in this splendid example:

    In the Shakta explanation, Mahattari is Kundalini, and a rough grab at how she seemed in Kubjika is that:

    Sabari was a yogini in the Ramayana who honored Ram and directed him to Hanuman. Her preceptor was Matangi. Satsahasra Samhita places five goddesses under Green Mahattari: Matangi, Pulindi, Sabari, Campaka, Kubjika: five Jnanas in the continuous stream of Kula and Akula (Shakti and Bhairava), corresponding to senses.

    That makes sense. Hanuman found Sita. Hanuman is the "organized, harmonious" Vayu, Maruts, or Prana; Sabari is dressed in Neem leaves and is medicine, so, would definitely "direct" someone to psychic health. Saying that Hanuman found Sita is almost exactly the same thing as saying Buddha's Wisdom is only found by harnessing the Life Winds. It is not mental in the ordinary Sarasvati sense of being a philosophy or regular learning, it is tantric Sarasvati, which is Matangi and Janguli.

    The system of Twenty-one Taras is generally held to emanate from Karma Family. There is not a "single" system; sometimes the Tara of origin is included in the roster, sometimes she is effectively twenty-second.

    As the above Tara Samadhi might take a few minutes to glance over, and a few years to do well, the system is based in a song that mainly has to do with twenty-one knots in the subtle body that Tara repairs. But it is a song of songs, for example if a certain verse is attributed to Usnisa Vijaya, then, the more you follow her on an individual basis, the more powerful that part of the song becomes, and so it is like an interlocked set of exponential amplifiers.

    Namasangiti and Seven Days of the Week are systems which just equate number x = certain dharani. Tara does that if you pursue a given lineage; but, if she is also a collection of individuals, and we alter the known sets here and there to get back to medieval Sanskrit Taras which would have been in current use with the song, we are allowed to do that. In fact one of the official Jonang sites specifically suggests we should delve into Sadhanamala Taras. I was already doing that, which is how I got the message.

    This is not musical, it is just a recital, which is still good for helping with pronunciation. This is considered a daily dharani in Kagyu.

    Tara became an enlightened savioress as Wisdom Moon Jnana Candra Yeshe Dawa in a world where Buddha Amoghasiddhi was known as Dundubisvara, Liberating Sound of the Drum. Roughly put, there are a few sets of "sounds of liberation" which culminate in Thunder or Drum. And so for example when we look at ranks of dakinis, some of the more energetic ones carry a Drum, and only certain other figures carry it. This Tara and Amoghasiddhi are in what we would call the Sixth Yoga. Normally Karma Family is fifth, and most of the male-based systems when adding Vajrasattva place him at the top, end, or sixth, like a king or capstone. However the Namasangiti system switches this around, instead, we are going to use Vajrasattva as the first or causitive agent for there to be any Families, and then when the pattern is arrayed, Amoghasiddhi is pushed "up" into the Sixth place. At this point, his Wisdom is considered equivalent to Mahamudra.

    This Wisdom normally carries the name Krtyanusthana, "Knowledge of Performance of Duty".

    Krtyanusthana Jana - Accomplishing Activities, the awareness that spontaneously carries out all that has to be done for the welfare of beings.

    It is Spontaneous and becomes Playful.

    It what? Siddhi. Amogha is Not Ignorant about Siddhi or occult power.

    Accomplishment is the Fourth, final Activity, done by a Bell. The resonance of a bell is like the initiatory seal of wisdom to a being. Quality of the output is mainly variable according to what you put into it. This is difficult. It may be extremely strange. Something on the other side of Pranayama.

    Our commentary to the song is in Post Forty-nine. This is a presentation to get familiar with it:

    The first introductory line is saying praise of Ekavimsatyai (twenty-one) Taras.

    The verses are:

    namas tāre ture vīre kṣaṇair dyuti-nibhêkṣaṇe |

    trailokya-nātha-vaktrābja-vikasat-kesarôdbhave ||

    namaḥ śata-śarac-candra-saṃpūrṇa-paṭalânane |

    tārā-sahasra-nikara-prahasat-kiraṇôjjvale ||

    namaḥ kanaka-nīlābja-pāṇi-padma-vibhūṣite |

    dāna-vīrya-tapaḥ-śānti-titikṣā-dhyāna-gocare ||

    namas tathāgatôṣṇīṣa-vijayânanta-cāriṇī |

    aśeṣa-pāramitā-prāpta-jina-putra-niṣevite ||

    namas tuttāre-hūṃ-kāra-pūritâśâdi-gantare |

    sapta-loka-kramâkrānti niḥśeṣâkarṣaṇa-kṣame ||

    namaḥ śakrānala-brahma-marud-viśvêśvarârcite |

    bhūta-vetāla-gandharva-gaṇa-yakṣa-puras-kṛte ||

    namas traḍ-iti-phaṭ-kāra-para-yantra-pramardini |

    pratyâlīḍha-pada-nyāse śikhi-jvalâkulêkṣaṇe ||

    namas ture mahâghore māra-vīra-vināśini |

    bhṛkuṭī-kṛta-vaktrābja-sarva-śatru-niṣūdini ||

    namas triratna-mudrâṅka-hṛdyâṅguli-vibhūṣite |

    bhūṣitâśeṣa-dik-cakra-nikara-sva-karâkule ||

    namaḥ prabhu-ditâṭopa-mukuṭâkṣipta-mālinī |

    hasat-prahasat-tuttāre-māra-loka-vaśaṃkari ||

    namaḥ samanta-bhūpāla-paṭalâkarṣaṇa-kṣame |

    calad-bhṝ-kuṭi-hūṃ-kāra-sarvâpada-vimocinī ||

    namaḥ śikhaṇḍa-khaṇḍêndu-mukuṭâbharaṇôjjvale |

    amitābha-jaṭâbhāra-bhāsvāra-kiraṇa-dhruve ||

    namaḥ kalpânta-huta-bhug-jvāla-mālântara-sthite |

    ālīḍha-mudita-ābaddha-ripu-cakra-vinaśiti ||

    namaḥ kara-talā-ghāta-caraṇā-hata-bhūtale |

    bhṛkuṭī-kṛta-hūṃ-kāra-sapta-pātāla-bhedini ||

    namaḥ śive śubhe śānte śānta-nirvāṇa-gocare |

    svāhā-praṇava-saṃyukte mahā-pāpaka-nāśini ||

    namaḥ pramuditâbaddha-ripu-gātra-prabhedini |

    daśâkṣara-pada-nyāsa-vidyā-hūṃ-kāra-dīpite ||

    namas ture-pādâghāte hūṃ-kārâkāra-bījite |

    meru-mandāra-kailāsa-bhuvana-traya-cālini ||

    namaḥ sura-sarâkāra-hariṇâṅka-kara-sthite |

    tāra-dvi-rukta-phaṭ-kārair aśeṣa-viṣanāśini ||

    namaḥ sura-gaṇâdhyakṣa-sura-kinara-sevite |

    ābaddha-muditâbhoga-kali-duḥsvapna-nāśini ||

    namaś candrârka-saṃpūrṇa-nayana-dyuti-bhāsure |

    hara-dvirukta-tuttāre-viṣama-jvara-nāśini ||

    namas tritatā-vinyāsa-śiva-śakti-samanvite |

    graha-vetāla-yakṣa-gaṇa-nāśani pravare ture ||

    [end of verses]

    mantra-mūlam idaṃ stotraṃ

    namas-kāraika-viṃśakaṃ |

    [The twenty-one praises are the song of her Ten Syllable Root Mantra]

    Akanistha is a certain condition of purity which we are trying to stabilize. It is like Sambhogakaya; it can just stay where it is. It can make a forward motion into form by emanating a Nirmanakaya or field of harmonic constructions and contact sentient beings in the Ten Directions, enter the physical plane, and Complete Manifest Buddha or Anuttara Samyak Sambodhi means Fully Expanded Samboghakaya like this.

    Or, it is within Akanistha you can do Void meditations. Buddhism teaches Arupa or Formless states, in the sense that they are simply defined as facts in nature. This has more and more to do with quiet nirvana. Apart from the relatively brief description, not much is said about these states. What most of the teaching is about is how to Enter and Emerge from it perfectly. So here in what is possibly the most difficult Family for most people to relate to, let alone achieve, is in turn the simplest part of the Akanistha to become established in. Some such as Akshobhya's Abhirati Pure Land are not attainable by a Bodhisattva of less than the eighth stage. This and Sukhavati and most of the others are composed of Jewels, whereas Tara's is a Forest similar to an Acacia Grove, so it is easily detectable, and this song can be heard there. If so it should be considered much more musical with instruments and hypnotic singing.
    Last edited by shaberon; 14th September 2021 at 23:05.

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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    Prajnaparamita, Vajra Family, and Guru Yoga

    Prajnaparamita Heart Sutra is another of the most famous mantras in the world.

    In Sadhanamala, Prajnaparamita deity is Paramartha Krama.

    In Yogacara terms, Paramartha or Ultimate Meaning refers to perfection or the Absolute. So it is the Transcendent or Lokottara condition. Yogacara mainly deals with Three Natures, or, rather, you deal with two of them, and Paramartha is That which is to be experienced. And like the Formless Worlds, not much is really said about it. It is indicated, and most of the practice is about entering and exiting safely and reliably.

    She is a Vajra Family deity, and, if we look in the first text to use Yogacara terminology, in Samdhinirmocana Sutra from ca. year 150, the terms are roughly described in relation to the Wisdoms which are often said to arise within Vajra Family's nature of Dharmakaya and Mirror Wisdom related to Cessation, to entering and arising from it. On the next page, Dharmakaya is able to perform when Samsara is in stillness.

    Prajnaparamita "Sutra" is more like a genre of literature. We sometimes refer to a standard one online. Prajnaparamita speaking of Dharani explains all the Bodhisattvas as having dharani, describes it mainly as words, qualities, and Upekka, and:

    is contained in one element (dhātu), one basis of consciousness (āyatana) and one aggregate (skandha), namely, dharmadhatu, dharmāyatana and saṃskāraskandha.

    Nine knowledges (jñāna) cognize it [Note: it is outside the knowledge of destruction of the afflictions (kṣayajñāna)]. One single consciousness (vijñāna) is aware of it [Note: the mental consciousness (manovijñāna)]. According to the Abhidharma, this is the definition of dhāraṇī.

    That is a bit like Vajradakini--Parasol having much to do with the head, but then also Samsara Skandha, which tends to be associated with the lower center.

    It sounds a bit like dharani practice generally, but, probably carried forward to the Fourth Yoga, Dharani.

    Dharani--words are accompanied by Qualities--Guna and Upekka or Upeksa.

    Prajnaparamita is the source of the Seventeen Mandala Vajrasekhara system, as well as the Seventeen Deity mandala format used in the tantras. It is an obscure piece of this literature on which Seventeen Deity mandala is based: Prajnaparamita in 150 Stanzas.

    Paramadya Tantra begins basically by copying it.

    It is unusual, since it is not in Akanistha, but in the sixth Kama Loka called Enjoying the Emanations of Others, where Vairocana deals with the Ishvar of this plane:

    Vairocana teaches Ishvara (that is, the Lord) of the desire realm by first emanating as a body of great joy who is
    surrounded by a retinue of beautiful women. This gets Ishvara’s attention, since when he
    sees the beauty of Vairocana’s retinue his own wife and her retinue look ugly in
    comparison. Ishvara then asks Vairocana how he obtained such a bevy of beauties. It is in
    response to this that Vairocana teaches Ishvara the seventeen pure states of the mode of the
    perfection of wisdom. Because Ishvara would be afraid of attaining liberation through the
    process of taking refuge, generating the mind of enlightenment, and then giving up his
    domain, Vairocana taught (or displayed) the seventeen pure states in the manner of
    goddesses, and thus he taught them as the source of very joyful great bliss.

    He then set forth the benefits of listening to and contemplating the mode of the perfection of wisdom
    (that is, the seventeen purities or pure states).

    150 Lines comes at p. 184 in the Conze translation, and I am not really able to find Seventeen Vishuddhi Pada before Vajrapani casting a mandala.

    It is one of the few articles considered a tantric Prajnaparamita text. It is considered the first intersection of esoteric tenets with a mandala.

    Prajñāpāramitā refers to this perfected way of seeing the nature of reality, as well as to a particular body of sutras and to the personification of the concept in the Bodhisattva known as the "Great Mother" (Tibetan: Yum Chenmo).

    In 2012, Harry Falk and Seishi Karashima published a damaged and partial Kharoṣṭhī manuscript of the Aṣṭasāhasrikā Prajñāpāramitā. It is radiocarbon dated to ca. 75 CE, making it one of the oldest Buddhist texts in existence. As its transmitter, Nagarjuna's origin is older and more mystifying due to that; and yet he was still a student of Ratnamati. Ratnamati is Vajradhara and Manjushri and was the guru to Saraha and Nagarjuna.

    Treatise on the Treasure Vehicle of Buddhahood, The Ratnagotravibhaga-mahayanottaratantra-shastra; Chin Chiu-ching-i-ch’eng-pao-hsing-lun; A work by Saramati, a Mahayana scholar of India, translated into Chinese in the sixth century by Ratnamati. Ratnamati was an eminent monk who came from central India to China and arrived at Songshan Shaolin Temple in 508 A.D.

    Ratnamati’s interpretation leaned heavily toward a Buddhist ideology only beginning to receive attention in China, tathāgatagarbha thought.

    In Vairocana Abhisambodhi Tantra, Prajnaparamita causes Locana to activate. Dharani itself is in the Dharmadhatu, Locana is the stages of purifying the Dharmadhatu. In Kalachakra Tantra, Prajnaparamita fuses with Vajradhatvishvari to produce Viswamata, Kalachakra's consort.

    In her common form, she is the Paramita, she is the Perfection of Subtle Wisdom of the Heart, she is the incipience as well as the full state of being. This was one of Ratnakarasanti's points. Usually the way it was being taught was because Prajnaparamita is Perfection, she is in such a high and lofty state that she is really cold and distant to us. But if we are trying our best, she becomes much more here--now. He promoted this above any other Sutra along with the message she can become actually present, you do not have to be a Tenth Stage Bodhisattva.

    She is usually a Four Arm Gold form, holding a copy of her own text. She does not have that many personal sadhanas, but, for example, when any deity holds a text, it is presumed to be hers except for a handful of named exceptions. It is one of Manjushri's favorite items. Here she is on her 1200s Tibetan manuscript cover with Buddha:

    Because Prajnaparamita is a standard opening liturgy which can be followed by Guru Yoga, since our Guru is Vajradhara, this is a good look at a merit Field in a 1700s Drikung Kagyu, at the top center arranged on billowing clouds are Vajradhara with the mahasiddhas Tilopa and Naropa at the right and left, followed by the Tibetan translator Marpa, the yogi Milarepa, the doctor and monk Gampopa, Pagmodrupa (former student of Sachen Kunga Nyingpo) and two additional figures in the line of Pagmodrupa.

    At the center of the composition is Vajradhara, seated in front of a large palace, with the female personification of wisdom directly above - Prajnaparamita. Directly behind those two figures, one above the other, are Tibetan books stacked in even rows.

    At Vajradhara's right side is Shakyamuni Buddha. On the left side is Chaturbhuja Avalokiteshvara. In front stands the principal meditational deity Chakrasamvara and Vajrayogini. At the lower right of Chakrasamvara is Sahaja Heruka Hevajra and Chaturbhuja Mahakala. On the left is Vajravarahi and Shri Devi.

    At the bottom center is white Vajrasattva with a seated lama to the side, followers and donors figures.

    So Prajnaparamita has a kind of core position surrounded by famous men. She and Vajradhara have approximately complimentary color schemes.

    She perhaps is even more prominent in a modern Karma Kagyu:

    Bhutanese Drukpa individual:


    This is, so to speak, her "public" form, whereas her dharani is something else. Publicly she uses a mantra found within her relatively brief Heart Sutra. If you are not doing Guru Yoga but you want to try being involved with Buddhist meditation then we always recite this Sutra. Saying nothing about it being a deity but just reading what is there.

    In classical Sanskrit there was a rule for Dharanis which tells you not to say "Tadyatha" because this expression is in all of them, saying "this way, it goes like this". And for the part you read, you only say Om the first time. This is a Sanskrit Prajnaparamita Heart Sutra which fades in with what sounds like the mantra without Om:

    Gate Gate Paragate Parasamgate Bodhi Svaha

    Timing is not always the best but on some of these you can follow the words and it is not really that difficult to start picking it up. Different Sanskrit version:

    Here is one that is relatively similar to a sadhana on its own with lots of repetition. It lacks the words onscreen, but is sung Sanskrit for six minutes of Prajnaparamita invocation:

    Oṃ Namo Bhagavatyai Ārya-prajnāpāramitāyai

    Om sarvajñāya

    then the sutra, then six minutes of Maha Mantra, Gate Gate Paragate Parasamgate Bodhi Svaha, sort of like cabaret:

    There is an English version for which the video was a bit muffled from sound effects. But there is a way to stream it. Prajnaparamita recital is on Vajra Sound. Using an add on, I can download it as a 53 MB .wav or it is otherwise available. The only difference from Nalanda Heart Sutra is that the very beginning is "Thus have I heard at one time" and a few more words maybe Jetvana grove, before "Once the Blessed One". The top version of the recordings on Vajra Sound is the original, and there is a new one, but I would tend to stick to the first. It is pretty talented, I can't do it that good. Unfortunately the NTC link doesn't seem to show the complete words any more; will try to replace it. I believe this is the right version.

    It is in a tri-lingual format with different English. It is said to be the only appearance of Avalokiteshvara in Prajnaparamita literature.

    Prajnaparamita is Subtle Wisdom whose residence is the life winds of the heart.

    That is why Vajra Family is Peace or Shanti, although they are more frequently known as the opposite, Dvesa, Anger, which is any type of Aversion.

    Vajra has various definitions, one being "hard, like a diamond is hard", whereas another is subtle, i. e. Vajrayana is a teaching that incorporates subtle yoga. And in this view, increasing softness, Mrdu, making something lighter and more etherealized, is "harder" because it is more "durable" because it is more enduring in time.

    The highly refined Akanistha is essentially permanent with respect to our world-system.

    This is said to be understood more and more by a Wisdom which has a Mirror as its nature, being clear and undisturbable.

    The deity Prajnaparamita pulls an Empty Niche trick. This has to do with developing a conceptual understanding of Voidness into some type of contact with Sunya or Akasa or Space that is like an appliance getting plugged in, called Body-less or Videha. And then where it looks like Vairocana's consort should be, there is no body, it is empty.

    That degree of practice was known prior to Buddha because it is what King Janaka Videha is named for and also Sita.

    It does mean physical body as far as I can tell, and is thereby unleashing forms which are free to move in the Akash, and most of the Vairocana tantras are replaced by that of Akshobhya.

    Vajrasattva and Vajradhara are hypostases from Akshobhya.

    And so in the formal training, before any deities would be given, in your meditation you mainly add Vajrasattva Hundred Syllable mantra. You could perhaps be using both Prajnaparamita and Vajrasattva without much awareness they are deities.

    They are, and he, so to speak, is taking a lesson made of her.

    In the Heart Sutra "Emptiness also is Form" expresses the esoteric tenet. The Akash is, so to speak, electrically pregnant; forms rise and dissolve in it.

    Other schools manage Guru Yoga in different ways. I lack a connection to Padmasambhava, so, styles like that did not work for me. In the scenario that Vajradhara is not even a person to be able to be connected to, we can file him as Mystery in the purest sense. The personal emanation, Vajrasattva, knows this and realizes some of it while knowing there is something that is further concealed.

    Because Guru is so inscrutable, I ask him to send me a teaching by Tara.

    That is the way you are supposed to, ritually, at least, access a Yidam, which also has what I call Kriya--Cara instructions on how you transmute what might otherwise be blind adherence into the desired inner realities.

    If a dharani is Sutra-based then you can use it any time. For example we use the short Usnisa Vijaya mantras when feeding animals. You can use that one in the outer world and bring it into your practice. One can just chant Tara mantra, or, use it with many of her basic forms.

    After an example of Guru Yoga then in basic Pranayama, there is a way of starting it with Prajnaparamita of the dharani.

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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    Guru Yoga

    Teaching and training as a whole is presented in Block Outline form. That is how we are able to ascertain "structure" and "parallels". So there are a few remarks about the Jonang sect; primarily, it is the main current vehicle of Shentong philosophy, and, it almost exclusively works with Kalachakra Tantra. The Kalachakra is most valuable for the clarity of its commentary for the inner meaning. As a "mandala language" of hundreds of deities, it is practically its own system, which does not translate or correspond hardly at all to the Dhyani Buddhas and so forth as rolled out in STTS and developed through most Sarma tantras. So to a certain extent, we try to avoid referring to it. However it is based in the same Six Yoga system so deeply that sometimes these yogas are just called Kalachakrayana.

    So it would be correct to say we are developing a sort of parallel to the Jonang Practice Outline. There, they describe the Six Yogas from the Completion Stage view:

    Each phase of the 6-fold yoga is practiced until accomplished before progressing on to the next yogic phase. Retreat durations are usually for the periods of 3, 6, or 9 years, depending upon the individual’s capacities, dispositions, and opportunities. Pratyahara is done in the dark until you see it.

    If Pranayama is the Third Yoga, then, we are taking about something that at the easiest would be three periods of three years with retreats--after having accomplished the Preliminaries and Deity Yoga Generation Stage (ca. one year).

    Comparatively, the beginning of practice starts with:

    A) Common Preliminaries (thun mong gi sngon ‘gro)

    1) Refuge and Prostrations
    2) Awakening Bodhicitta Mind
    3) Vajrasattva Meditation & Recitation
    4) Mandala Offerings
    5) Guruyoga

    Each Common Preliminary is accomplished 100,000 times. Then you have:

    Generation Stage or Skye Rim


    The 3 isolations of the body, speech, and mind are performed as a special preparation for the completion stage yoga. These practices are performed in a dark-room in order to isolate the habitual activities of one’s ordinary perceptions and expressions.

    So Guru Yoga is really the full form of Preliminaries or Ngondro for the ways of doing Six Limb Yoga.

    The difficulty is that (1) and (2) when expressed and practiced at great length are already going to take around an hour. That is how I started in it. That is how meditation is ordinarily taught at a starting level. And so for example, Berzhin Archives has a Shantideva version of what is just called "Prostrations" above, which is Seven Limb practice. Lama Zopa Rinpoche has an extensive version. The seven limbs are:

    Prostrations, Offerings, Confession, Rejoicing, Requesting to Teach, Requesting to Live Long and Dedication

    H.H. Khenchen Lama Rinpoche shows a very condensed version.

    As a "stage of practice", it may need to be detailed and lengthy until a person is comfortable with the process and the importance of Bodhicitta. This Bodhicitta is the "character", so to speak, of Vajrasattva. And so it is taught and practiced as an abstract quality until a person is ready to "name" it. And if we see the Jonang Practice Outline emphasizes this, and does not mention the other limbs at all, then this topic from Berzhin is most relevant:

    Prostration, with Refuge and Bodhichitta

    Next, we "take refuge and develop bodhichitta." This means that we reaffirm our aim and wish to go in a safe, positive direction in life, which is how I translate "taking refuge." We try to think and feel that I want to go in a safe direction in order to avoid problems and difficulties; I do not want to have them. I dread continuing in my difficult situation. What indicates the positive direction to avoid problems? A state of mind completely free of confusion and filled with all positive good qualities. Such a state of purification and growth is the Dharma. Those who have fully achieved such a state and who show that direction are the Buddhas. Those who have attained such a state in some measure also show this direction. They are the Sangha. That is the direction that I am going to put in my life. Taking refuge means reaffirming this direction in life.

    Moreover, I am taking this safe and positive direction in order to be able to help others as fully as is possible, not just to benefit myself. To achieve this aim, I need to travel this direction all the way to the end, to enlightenment, and not give up, not be satisfied with just going part of the way. This is what we do when we reaffirm refuge and bodhichitta.

    When we feel this attitude or state of mind of going in a safe direction to be able to help others and going fully in that direction to help others as much as is possible, then we make prostration. If we have already sat down and decide not to get up and physically prostrate, we may simply imagine making prostration. In a sense, prostrating is like throwing ourselves fully in this direction; and doing so with respect – respect for those who have gone in this direction and respect for ourselves and our abilities to do the same. Thus, making prostration is not a self-denigrating act; it is not putting ourselves down, but lifting ourselves up.

    That is the first of the seven-limb practice: prostration with refuge and bodhichitta. If we are practicing in class, we sit down at this point.

    That part is the main focus. You could proceed with the Shantideva format, or just the truncated brief prayer, but if we did not do much with the possible "full format", it is, so to speak, distributed into the Guru Yoga anyway. So the whole thing is moved or repeated. Here we do want to make Refuge Vow, I normally do it three times, and a way of invoking bodhicitta.

    Refuge and Generation of Bodhi are the main starting points. Bodhi is not the brain--mind, it lives in the heart. That is why Prajnaparamita is involved. If we want to understand Vajrasattva, he is the increasing awareness of this and ability to behave accordingly. And so as a hypostasis, in Guhyasamaja Tantra, he becomes Bodhicittavajra, or bodhi with vajra-like intensity.

    Bodhi Mind is not just a starting impulse or attitude, but is one of the profound Mysteries of Seven Vajras of the Jewel Lineage, RGV or Ratna-gotra Vibhaga. We know it to be characterized by compassion or overwhelming compassion. Compassion is often called karuna in the texts. So in describing the Svabhavika kaya as an Androgyne, i. e. Vajrasattva, the following sentence is not too difficult:

    esa svabhavika kaya sunyata-karuna-advaya

    So the svabhavika kaya is a personally produced "body" you make by the non-dual union of voidness and compassion. Almost every time it comes up in Buddhism, non-dual is an adjective, advaya, which is a little different from adwaita, "not two". So we use non-dual as an adjective almost every time it comes up, as an androgyne or sexless unity, the couple united, yughanadda, Buddha and Prajna, Compassionate Means and Transcendental Wisdom, these couples are all non-dual. Personal experience of the metaphysical terms is on the "other side" of Bodhi Mind Generation. Or perhaps it is within it. We make this firm Bodhi Mind commitment, and to become purified by Vajrasattva, means you have to uphold a Bond of Dignity with him.

    I was mistaken about the Nalanda site which still has Prajnaparamita Heart Sutra on the pdf link through the commentary. I do knot know if the Jonang use it. But it is standard for opening any Kagyu Ngondro, released on the following timescale:

    Lotsåwa bhikúhu Rinchen De translated this text into Tibetan with the Indian païçita Vimalamitra.
    It was edited by the great editor-lotsåwas Gelo, Namkha, and others. This Tibetan text was copied
    from the fresco in Gegye Chemaling at the glorious Samye vihåra. It has been translated into English
    by the Nålandå Translation Committee, with reference to several Sanskrit editions.

    © 1975, 1980 by the Nålandå Translation Committee

    So I am going to set this up as a bundle that looks like a Sutra, a Vow, a Dharani, a Mantra, and then the actual Guru Yoga. Vajrasattva is a Dharani. And this is a phase-in. You should not add him until you are comfortable with the first part, which, during this time should perhaps have a more extensive Seven Limb session. And then when you want to add Vajrasattva, we use him followed by Purity Mantra, and he begins a basic visualization where he melts, flows through, and cleans you. This is something else you are allowed to focus in greater detail. If you want to use waterfalls and natural scenery or customize it somehow, you can. We are just going to consider it something like an overheated candle and leave it at that. The important thing is that he is Samaya Sattva and you make and uphold a bond of dignity with him at all times. This is what we are trying to promote. This is the main basic explanation of what it means to "be a Buddhist" or "practice Buddhism", etc., is to understand Refuge Vow and take it seriously. It means the Triple Jewel is the best, safest, and most reliable guide. It does not mean there is no wisdom in other yogas, and we are free to experience whatever we want, but Refuge is the most important way. As soon as I follow what that is, it gives me Vajrasattva. And so while there is little need to spend too much time in the very beginning Preliminaries, when you take Vajrasattva, it is probably best to train this way for a few months before you add Guru Yoga.

    I personally could not get standard ones using Padmasambhava or Tson kha pa. Mostly these different Guru Yogas of the schools are still going to show the connection of the Guru with Vajradhara. But there are materials mostly from Kagyu sources which just deal directly with Vajradhara. Now the reason that some of these "beings" are available to us is because they are parts of the human aura. Vajrasattva Maya Jala is Guhyagarbha Tantra or the Zhitro or Kagye tradition of Encounter with Peaceful and Wrathful Deities, which is also portrayed in Dakini Jala. So if it talks about Vairocana, it means something that is already within you, but obscured, and is trying to help with the transformation. Other deities and the Bodhicitta itself come from outside the human psyche. The teaching gives you the concept of Bodhicitta which is supposed to be inspirational, and we use that to invoke Vajrasattva. This begins a Noumenal change whereby the subsequent yoga does not employ "energy of the centers" alone. Our Suksma Yoga derives from the ability to maintain this Vajrasattva Samaya.

    The Kagyu Guru Yoga is going to harness this with the basics of tantra. And for example, when you "recite" Guru's mantra, you can train the art of Pranayama starting here. And so our exercises on more specific Pranayama deities will look like they are attached or drawn from here.

    In my experience, Guru is very powerful and is already in the stage of Body Isolation, according to the outline above, which is what it means when I say it is impossible to do in a place with any stimuli.

    When developed, the Yoga Preliminaries of Kagyu affiliation include the following. We are taking into consideration the average person may not have bells and offering bowls and so on. So this is a way to do it on a mostly verbal and mental basis in just some quiet room or whatever you have.


    Thus have I heard. Once the Blessed One was dwelling in Råjagriha at Vulture Peak
    mountain, together with a great gathering of the sangha of monks and a great gathering of
    the sangha of bodhisattvas. At that time the Blessed One entered the samådhi that expresses
    the dharma called “profound illumination,” and at the same time noble Avalokiteshvara,
    the bodhisattva mahåsattva, while practicing the profound prajñåpåramitå, saw in this way:
    he saw the five skandhas to be empty of nature.
    Then, through the power of the Buddha, venerable Shåriputra said to noble Avalokiteshvara, the bodhisattva mahåsattva, “How should a son or daughter of noble family train,
    who wishes to practice the profound prajñåpåramitå?”

    Addressed in this way, noble Avalokiteshvara, the bodhisattva mahåsattva, said to
    venerable Shåriputra, “O Shåriputra, a son or daughter of noble family who wishes to
    practice the profound prajñåpåramitå should see in this way: seeing the five skandhas to
    be empty of nature. Form is emptiness; emptiness also is form. Emptiness is no other than
    form; form is no other than emptiness. In the same way, feeling, perception, formation, and
    consciousness are emptiness. Thus, Shåriputra, all dharmas are emptiness. There are no
    characteristics. There is no birth and no cessation. There is no impurity and no purity. There
    is no decrease and no increase. Therefore, Shåriputra, in emptiness, there is no form, no
    feeling, no perception, no formation, no consciousness; no eye, no ear, no nose, no tongue,
    no body, no mind; no appearance, no sound, no smell, no taste, no touch, no dharmas; no
    eye dhåtu up to no mind dhåtu, no dhåtu of dharmas, no mind consciousness dhåtu; no
    ignorance, no end of ignorance up to no old age and death, no end of old age and death; no
    suffering, no origin of suffering, no cessation of suffering, no path, no wisdom, no
    attainment, and no nonattainment. Therefore, Shåriputra, since the bodhisattvas have no
    attainment, they abide by means of prajñåpåramitå. Since there is no obscuration of mind,
    there is no fear. They transcend falsity and attain complete nirvåïa. All the buddhas of the
    three times, by means of prajñåpåramitå, fully awaken to unsurpassable, true, complete
    enlightenment. Therefore, the great mantra of prajñåpåramitå, the mantra of great insight,
    the unsurpassed mantra, the unequaled mantra, the mantra that calms all suffering, should
    be known as truth, since there is no deception. The prajñåpåramitå mantra is said in this


    Thus, Shåriputra, the bodhisattva mahåsattva should train in the profound prajñåpåramitå.”
    Then the Blessed One arose from that samådhi and praised noble Avalokiteshvara, the
    bodhisattva mahåsattva, saying, “Good, good, O son of noble family; thus it is, O son of
    noble family, thus it is. One should practice the profound prajñåpåramitå just as you have
    taught and all the tathågatas will rejoice.”

    When the Blessed One had said this, venerable Shåriputra and noble Avalokiteshvara,
    the bodhisattva mahåsattva, that whole assembly and the world with its gods, humans,
    asuras, and gandharvas rejoiced and praised the words of the Blessed One.

    Refuge Vow:

    Buddha Saranam Gacchami

    Dharma Saranam Gacchami

    Sangha Saranam Gacchami

    Generate Bodhicitta

    Imagine in the Space before you, or, over the crown of your head, Vajrasattva:

    Visualize Vajrasattva and recite:


    (Om, Vajrasattva, uphold your samaya; bring it about that I remain closely bonded)


    (Bring it about that I am stable; that I am happy; that I am joyous; that I am safeguarded)


    (Bestow on me all attainments; Make all my actions excellent; make the mind supreme)



    (Transcendent master surpassing all, vajra state of the tathagathas, do not let me loose, Vajra being of great, wise samaya)

    Make a statement to Vajrasattva about how sorry you are for all the ill deeds you have done in the past, and declare your strong intention to avoid these ill deeds in the future. Then imagine that the Vajrasattva that you have been meditating on dissolves into you.

    Meditate that everything is purified into emptiness by means of the Svabhava mantra:

    Om Svabhava Shuddha Sarva Dharma Svabhava Shuddho Ham

    It is the Purity mantra: oṃ (by) self-nature pure (are) all dharmas; by self-nature pure (am) I. Repeat this and experience shamatha (tranquility without thinking).

    In Space, Bhagavan Vajradhara appears.

    1) Visualize Guru Vajradhara: There is a calm lake, in which a tree of five branches grows. At the center where the branches join, on a lotus, sun and moon above my head is my root guru, Vajradhara, exquisitely adorned. He sits in the Vajra posture, holding a vajra and bell in his crossed hands. Gurus and precious ones are gathered around him in great numbers, some above each others, some in great clusters.The guru is in the sky directly in front of our head. His throne is held up by two lions in each of its four sides and covered in brocades and silks; on top of a lotus and moon seat is our teacher in the form of Vajradhara. If it is too difficult to imagine all these figures, the Karmapa said it would be all right to consider that all of these beings are embodied in the central figure of Vajradhara. It is especially important to think of our lama as incorporating all of the Three Jewels. Then recite:

    "Om, all pervading ones, you are the very nature of all things, like space you have neither abiding or going, nor any of the material characteristics of coming or going, yet like the moon reflecting in water, you manifest wherever someone thinks of you. Glorious Herukas who conquer the armies of negative forces, gurus, yidams, dakinis and all those who accompany you, if now I pray to you with faith, please manifest here clearly the power of your non conceptual compassion."

    2) Perform the Seven Limb Prayer (Shantideva version)

    "I take safe direction, till my purified state, from the Buddhas, the Dharma, and the Highest Assembly. By the positive force of my giving and so on, may I actualize Buddhahood to help those who wander. May the surface of the land in every direction be pure, without even a pebble, as smooth as the palm of a child's hand, naturally polished, as is a beryl gem. May divine and human objects of offering, actually arrayed and those envisioned as peerless clouds of Samantabhadra offerings, completely fill the sphere of space.

    (1) Prostration

    I prostrate to all you Buddhas who have graced the three times, to the Dharma and to the Highest Assembly, bowing down with bodies as numerous as all the atoms of the world.

    (2) Offering

    Just as Manjushri and others have made offerings to you, the Triumphant, so do I, too, make offerings to you, my Thusly Gone Guardians, and to your spiritual offspring.

    (3) Confession

    Throughout my beginningless samsaric existence, in this and other lives, I've unwittingly committed negative acts, or caused others to commit them, and further, oppressed by the confusion of naivety. I've rejoiced in them – whatever I've done, I see them as mistakes and openly declare them to you, my Guardians, from the depths of my heart.

    (4) Rejoice

    With pleasure, I rejoice in the ocean of positive force from your having developed bodhichitta aims to bring every limited being joy and in your deeds that have aided limited beings.

    (5) Request for Dharma

    With palms pressed together, I beseech you Buddhas of all directions: please shine Dharma's lamp for limited beings suffering and groping in darkness.

    (6) Request to Remain

    With palms pressed together, I beseech you Triumphant who would pass beyond sorrow: I beg you, remain for countless eons so as not to leave in their blindness these wandering beings.

    (7) Dedication of Merit

    By whatever positive force I've built up through all of these that I've done like that, may I remove every suffering of all limited beings. By directing and offering to the Buddha-fields this base, anointed with fragrant waters, strewn with flowers, and decked with Mount Meru, four islands, a sun, and a moon, may all those who wander be led to pure lands. Om idam guru ratna mandala-kam nir-yatayami. I send forth this mandala to you precious gurus."

    3) Recite Supplications to the Guru (Short Vajradhara, Nalanda Translation Committee version)

    "Great Vajradhara, Tilo, Naro, Marpa, Mila, Lord of Dharma Gampopa, Knower of the Three Times, omniscient Karmapa, Holders of the four great and eight lesser lineages – Drikung, Tag-lung, Tsalpa, these three, glorious Drukpa and so on – Masters of the profound path of Mahamudra, Incomparable protectors of beings, the Takpo Kagyü, I supplicate you, the Kagyü Gurus, I hold your lineage; grant your blessings so that I will follow your example.

    Revulsion is the foot of meditation, as is taught. To this meditator who is not attached to food and wealth, Who cuts the ties to this life, Grant your blessings so that I have no desire for honour and gain.

    Devotion is the head of meditation, as is taught. The Guru opens the gate to the treasury of oral instructions. To this meditator who continually supplicates him, Grant your blessings so that genuine devotion is born in me.

    Awareness is the body of meditation, as is taught. Whatever arises is fresh – the essence of realization. To this meditator who rests simply without altering it, Grant your blessings so that my meditation is free from conception.

    The essence of thoughts is dharmakaya, as is taught. Nothing whatever but everything arises from it. To this meditator who reflects on unceasing play, Grant your blessings so that I realize the inseparability of samsara and nirvana.

    Through all my births may I not be separated from the perfect Guru And so enjoy the splendour of Dharma. Perfecting the virtues of the paths and bhumis, May I speedily attain the state of Vajradhara.

    May precious bodhicitta be born in those in whom it has not arisen. Having arisen, may it not degenerate, and may it continue to develop more and more.

    Either (A):

    "All beings, my mothers, throughout space, pray to the Lama, the precious Buddha, All beings, my mothers, throughout space, pray to the guru, the all-pervading Dharmakaya, All beings, my mothers throughout space, pray to the guru, the very blissful Sambhogakaya, All beings, my mothers throughout space, pray to the guru, the very compassionate Nirmanakaya."

    Or (B):

    "I and all sentient beings limitless as the sky supplicate to the Guru Dharmakaya. I and all sentient beings limitless as the sky supplicate to the Guru Sambhogakaya. I and all sentient beings limitless as the sky supplicate to the Guru Nirmanakaya, the compassionate one. I and all sentient beings limitless as the sky supplicate to the Guru, the precious Buddha."

    Recite mantra: "Karmapa Chenno" (embodiment of Buddha actions, know me and remember me)

    "I pray to the precious guru, Grant your blessing that my mind may let go of the belief in a self, Grant your blessing that desirelessness be born in me, Grant your blessing that non Dharma thoughts may cease, Grant your blessing that I may realise my mind as unborn, Grant your blessing that delusion may subside of itself, Grant your blessing that phenomena be realised to be the Dharmakaya"

    Calling the Lama from Afar (Excellent Path of Supreme Great Bliss version):

    "Namo gurubhyaḥ!"

    (All vehicles, causal and resultant, Teach that the guru is an emanation of the Buddha, And, therefore, those who pray to him or her with devotion will undoubtedly receive blessings. Yet this depends mainly upon one’s own devotion, For how could blessings and accomplishments ever result From merely mouthing the words of calling out to the guru while still remaining doubtful? It is vital, therefore, that you supplicate the master strongly with full confidence and assurance While Calling the Guru from Afar like this):

    "lama khyen

    Guru, please think of me, know me, and bless me!"

    (After calling out three times like this, the master’s compassion reaches out and touches you, and you continue with):

    "Within the essence, dharmakāya, all-pervasive as the sky, The nature, unlimited sambhogakāya, shines like the sun’s luminous rays, And compassion, like a rainbow, arises as nirmāṇakāya.To awaken in the depths of my heart the wisdom realization of these three kāyas, inseparable –Vajra Guru, essence of the Buddha, please bless me!

    So that I may realize the original ground, the Great Perfection free from eight limitations, Through the direct path on which the veils of view and meditation are removed, And, joining with the fruition in which effort and aspiration are no more, Be liberated in the original dharmakāya, where ground and result have always been indivisible – Vajra Guru, essence of the Buddha, please bless me!

    So that I do not squander the excellent support Of this precious human rebirth, found only once in hundreds of lifetimes, But, accompanied by guides who have mastered the profound instructions for life, death and the bardo, Achieve the fullness of realization, the perfection of the three kāyas’ own dynamic energy – Vajra Guru, essence of the Buddha, please bless me!

    So that I may understand the faults of this momentary, impermanent universe and all it contains, And arrive right now, immediately and effortlessly, At a state of uncompounded, spontaneously present great bliss, Which is primordial – never having arisen, developed, or changed in any way – Vajra Guru, essence of the Buddha, please bless me!

    So that I may enjoy the ambrosia of ripening empowerments and liberating instructions Of Ati and Yangti, the culmination of the nine vehicles of sublime Dharma, Which protects from saṃsāra’s terrifying ravines, And save myself immediately from sinking deeper into saṃsāra’s mire – Vajra Guru, essence of the Buddha, please bless me!

    The root of saṃsāra’s vicious circle of confusion – good or bad, happy or painful – Lies in the seeds of twofold ignorance: connate and conceptual. So that I may banish this ignorance, the heart’s darkness, right in its own place With the lamp of self-emergent awareness, the wisdom that realizes the absence of self, Vajra Guru, essence of the Buddha, please bless me!

    Awareness, ever free, is the ultimate refuge, the fundamental nature of reality, While uncertain or temporary refuges fail to bring about the absolute fruition. So that I may realize this supreme refuge, the vajra-mind, perfectly accomplished, Beyond any notion of subject, object or action of taking refuge – Vajra Guru, essence of the Buddha, please bless me!

    So that I may leave behind attachment to good intentions produced by wishful thinking, Caught in the dualities of self and other, saṃsāra and nirvāṇa, and hope and fear, And remain instead in the certainty that never strays From the innate nature of mind – boundless, ultimate, and awakened – Vajra Guru, essence of the Buddha, please bless me!

    The thick darkness of the two obscurations, difficult to discern, has been present throughout beginningless time, But so that the radiant sun of luminous wisdom-awareness May clear defiled habits, transgressions, and downfalls into their natural purity, And I may be established as the stainless conch-white Lord Protector – Vajra Guru, essence of the Buddha, please bless me!

    So that I may perfect the great accumulation – realizing the fundamental nature of reality to be my own nature – And abide in the infinitely uniform expanse of Samantabhadra’s wisdom mind, with its six special features of awakening, Through the vehicle of Ati, which is effortless and uncomplicated, May I seize the kingdom of dharmakāya in this present lifetime: Vajra Guru, essence of the Buddha, please bless me!

    So that I may behold the true master – awareness-emptiness – in the centre of my heart, Through the immediate cause of praying intensely with genuine devotion, And realize the great empowerment of awareness’s dynamic energy, May the wisdom transmission of ultimate indication be transferred this very instant! Vajra Guru, essence of the Buddha, please bless me!

    Although accumulation and purification are pure in themselves, may gathering merit never cease. Although self and other are non-dual, may generating bodhichitta never stop. Although the mind is recognized to be the guru, may heartfelt practice never end. Although the deities’ wisdom forms are never separate, may we strive in the two stages of the path. Vajra Guru, essence of the Buddha, please bless me!

    In short, in caves and huts in isolated mountain retreats, Through the path of enlightenment without meditation, knowing the one crucial point that liberates all, And supported by the truly royal yogic lifestyle of renouncing pointless activity, May I be able to erase the dividing line between saṃsāra and nirvāṇa – for this alone I pray! Vajra Guru, essence of the Buddha, please bless me!

    Having perfected ourselves, in the space of great simplicity, the unborn dharmakāya, Endless wisdom embodiments will appear to serve others through noble enlightened activity. So that I may follow this path actualized by the buddhas and their sublime heirs, And fulfil my aspiration to empty the three realms of saṃsāra from their very depths, Vajra Guru, essence of the Buddha, please bless me!"

    (The Empowerment):

    "Glorious perfect guru, please grant me the four empowerments that bring spiritual maturity. Bless me that I may quickly be ripe for the four streams of practice. Grant me accomplishment of the four activities"

    (Everything else merges into Vajradhara)

    (Then from him, a white light emanates from his forehead and dissolves in my forehead, it purifies all obstructions caused by physical misdeeds, I receive the vase empowerment, enabling me to practise the visualisation stage of meditation, I now have the fortunate opportunity of achieving the Nirmanakaya.

    From his throat, a red light emanates and dissolves into my throat, and dissolves all obscurations caused by speech, I receive the secret empowerment enabling me to meditate on the subtle channels and energies. I now have the fortunate opportunity of achieving the Sambhogakaya.

    From his heart, a blue light emanates and dissolves into my heart, and purifies all obstructions of the mind. I receive the wisdom empowerment, enabling me to practise the meditation that establishes the stability. I now have the fortunate opportunity of achieving the Dharmakaya.

    Then the three lights, white, red and blue radiate together and purify simultaneously my three centres. I receive the fourth empowerment enabling me to realise Mahamudra. I now have the fortunate possibility of achieving the Svabhavikakaya, the union of the three kayas.)

    (We now feel that we have completely, experientially realised the enlightened state of Mahamudra. This is what we call the Four Empowerments of body, speech, mind, and all three together. When we receive it, we should very strongly feel that we are transformed, that we actualize the enlightened state. This is a very important part and almost the end of the guru yoga. After having given the empowerments, the guru melts, becomes a ball of light, and that ball of light enters into our body through the top of our head, and we become one with him.)

    5) Recite the Vajra-Guru mantra (numerous times)


    6) Prayers of Dedication

    "Every being without exception has the vajra mind, eternal and blissful. I dedicate the virtue generated by this practice to them all since it brings Buddhahood, immortality, through the union of skills and understanding and entry into changelessness through the inner path. Through this virtue may I quickly achieve the Mahamudra and thereafter my I bring all beings, without exception, to that same state. Through the blessings of the buddhas' achievement of the three kayas, through the blessing of the truth of the changeless Dharma and through the blessing of the sangha's undivided aspiration, may this dedication prayer come true.

    Through the goodness of all the roots of virtue I have gathered in the three times, may I, in all my lives, collect and uphold the pure teachings of my Guru, Karmapa, the Lord of Dharma. Thereby may the development of my own and others' understanding be brought to complete maturity. May I, in each and every one of my existences, be like splendid Vajrapani, unerring in everything related to the quintessence of the subtle form, speech and mind.

    May I always be a fitting vessel for the study of, and realisation through insight of all aspects of liberation of the subtle form, speech and mind. May I never be separate from them in all my existences, even for an instant, just as the body is never separate from its shadow. May I achieve the felicity of the five joys. May I be able to complete all my projects, just as planned, through learning a vast panorama of activities which cultivate the two accumulations. May I never be lazy even for a moment in being an instrument of my guru's activity. May I achieve his works through the four modes of peaceful, increasing, powerful and wrathful activity. May whatever actions I perform through my three doors carry my guru's instructions to completion. May what I achieve through the nine modes of service be pleasing to him. May whatever virtuous, unvirtuous or neutral action I perform be something which is pleasing for him. May I never for an instant do something which is displeasing for him. May I be the instrument of the principal activity of my Guru and great master of Dharma. May I become the inheritor of the teachings of my Guru. May I become able to quell all sickness, strife and famine throughout the ten directions. May I truly actualise the Mahamudra at the clear light stage of death. May there be no intermediate bardo manifestations but integration into the mandala of glorious Vajrasattva.

    Abiding in that state, may I elevate all beings to the state of great Vajradhara through the mighty play of the Vajrayana. In brief, may I become like my guru, the profound master of Dharma, one through whom there is liberation when seen, when heard, when called to mind and when touched. May I ever be mindful, in the depth of my hear, of the absolute certainty in death. May I enter the blessing of Mikyo Gawa through complete authentic renunciation born of total weariness with Samsara and the growth of natural faith and devotion. May there never be, either for myself or any other person, involvement with arrogance about oneself, condemnation of others and delight in others' weaknesses and downfalls. In all my existences, may I be nurtured and cared for by the best of all friends, the supremely caring holder of the Black Crown, the essence yidams glorious Dewacho and Chakrasamvara. May I, in each and every one of my existences, achieve the state never separate from guru Mikyö Dorjé, yidam Vajrayogini, Dharma protector Mahakala and so forth.

    Every being, without exception, has the Vajra mind, eternal and blissful.

    I dedicate the virtue (generated by this practice) to them, since it brings Buddhahood - immortality, through the union of skills and understanding and entry into changelessness through the inner path."



    It is a Kagyu version of Vajradhara and when done this way, the Empowerments release Four Activities, and the Three Lights are the basis for Om Ah Hum, and this is how it starts to involve other deities. By referring to Svabhavikakaya, or Divine Androgyne, it is upgrading the nature of Vajrasattva from only a purifier into the vehicle for the practice of Gnosis (Jnana). This would be considered the beginning of tantra and is illustrated in the first Namasangiti mandala, Manjuvajra, and as we see is the basis of the Prajnaparamita and Paramadya, etc., mandala systems.

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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    Quote Posted by Mashika (here)
    Lol, the first picture, i know what you mean. I will come back to ask about a couple more things, but tomorrow

    I just came to tell you that i know what that first picture is.. lol, it goes across walls even, right? Does it *wave*in the air ?

    Kind of. It was more like what I would describe as a "tornado of lightning". It was in a cloud for about an hour, which caused the night sky to just be "on" like that, like a giant fluorescent light. Eventually it broke through the cloud and spun out a "spinning funnel" aimed more or less right at me. At that point, I was more or less asking nature to be fatal to me if it so chose.

    As for "walls", all I know is I was at first inside, but it...definitely got my attention, when it was at first "flickering" like those lights sometimes do, until, like a bulb sinking into place, it was just "connected" and "on".

    It has a sound similar to a spark plug or live wire but does not make thunder.

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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    Paramadya, Supreme Origin of Vajrasattva Tantra

    With a tantra such as STTS, you are not really dealing with a Yidam, Ista Devata, or Wisdom or Tutelary Deity, you are approaching it.

    And so we are looking at Paramadya as a way to sort of get Vajrasattva loosened up and moving. It seems to be a Jewel Family tantra which in turn revealed Vajramrita Tantra and Dakini Jala. It quotes almost nothing, and almost everything else quotes it. And the manuscript is still in existence, but I do not know of it being available to us except in fragments in various studies.

    It is also the source of Seventeen as a mandala population. This does continue the tantras, and, as well as the Gauris, there is another retinue ring I call Vajraraudris which we are trying to track and clarify as part of this. They appear only in the Abhayakaragupta NSP lineage of Samputa and Weapon Hevajra.

    There is also a track of the more well-known Tri-shakti in a mandala we only have this comment from Genesis and Development of Tantra which may look better in pdf:

    For example, the deities Vajranarayana, [Vajra]candisvara,
    and Vajrapadmodbhava, that is to say, Vajrayanist transformations of Visnu, Rudra,
    and Brahma, together with their consorts Vajrasri, Vajragauri, and Vajratara, join
    Akasagarbha and Khavajrini to form the retinue of Vajrasattva in the central sec-
    tion of the abridged Mandala (bsdus pa'i dkyil 'khor) of the Yogatantra Paramadya,
    a text with which the Sarvabuddhasamayoga is closely related.

    That disposition of deities is taught in the Sriparamadyamantrakalpakhanda, according to Anandagarbha's Paramadyatika.

    Dakini Jala primarily only draws from Paramadya and Trisamayarājakalpa. Things quoting from it include Vilasavajra's NMAA, Anandagarbha, Nagarjuna's Pancha Krama, Vajradaka and all the Chakrasamvara tantras. Anandagarbha's commentaries give the detailed forms of the STTS deities and the Dakini Jala Gauris, the latter being from this same Genesis book.

    STTS has the Maheshvara subjugation myth which causes the above transformations. From it, the female Ghasmari overpowered the chief Ishana Rudra, and she becomes part of the Gauri group and is perhaps among the highest things we will employ in Pranayama. STTS is probably the first expression of Possession or Avesa.

    In Buddhist Tantras, Alex Wayman states that the clearest light he has found on esoterics is an Anandagarbha commentary on a tantra portion entitled Sri Paramadya Mantrakalpakhandanama. He was trying to explain why tantric sexual symbolism isn't about sex. The conclusion he got from the commentary is that Vajrasattva is androgynous and that is why men and women can both use the Path.

    This is a Yoga level teaching so it does not use union. And so it would be preliminary for Anuttara Yoga which does. Because the secret meanings are not exactly sexual, the higher teachings are kept secret except from those who delight in inner samadhi. So this Yoga explanation is a proving ground for that.

    I have found a sort of disconnect between classes of tantras, because although it is fairly easy to find out that Six Yogas is the main practice of Completion Stage, it is not easy to see that it means simultaneously to do the Abhisambodhis. Conversely, when Abhisambodhis are taught, it could be taken just as a ritual act without any of the transformative ability, because they are taught in tantras that do not explain Gereration and Completion Stage, nor do they teach the necessity of cleansing death and rebirth.

    Vairocana Tantras are relatively radical for their time by describing the Final Samadhi of Buddha's Enlightenment and making it into a reproducible form with words and imagery. Enlightenment is the specific act using Abhisambodhis, which may be described as:

    White Moon
    Red Moon
    Bija Syllable
    Hand Symbol
    Perfect Image

    The perfect image is the rebirth of something that died. And so the first four stages have to do with the Voids which are deathlike. You enter and cleanse the Bardo Consciousnesses of death, intermediate state, and seeking rebirth. You go through and come out with for example a symbol which develops the image. That is the tantric meaning. It may not sound that way in the exoteric descriptions.

    Vajradhara means Holder of Vajra, which is the first and main such symbol, which is the subject here. This is "the Reality of the hand symbol of Sri Paramadya":

    "The great weapon of the great lord [Mahavajradhara] who has the supreme success [siddhi of Vajrasattva] that is great, is said to be the five-pronged thunderbolt [vajra] which is the great reality of the five secrets."

    The great reality of five secrets are five goddesses who are seals--mudra arising from the Body, Speech, and Mind of Mahavajradhara.

    The first secret is Bodhichitta itself, which is Vajrasattva, who has both the great pleasure [female] and the unwasted vajra [male]. So by having both properties, he has been rendered androgynous, or non-dual union of both. At least this is what Wayman states he gets from poring over Anadagarbha's Paramadya commentary.

    The second secret is Understanding Bodhicitta, which is Ragavajra, who pleases Vajrasattva's mind so he will not swerve from the thought of enlightenment.

    The third secret is Realization of Bodhicitta, which is Vajra Kili Kila, the pledge to arouse attachment to the great pleasure and unwasted vajra.

    The fourth secret is Non-abandonment of Bodhicitta, which is Vajrasmrti, indestructible memory because unshattered, holding victory over lust, etc.

    The fifth secret is Gnosis or knowledge characterized by attainment, Vajra Kamesvari, sensory objects materialized by Vajrasattva (or perhaps Offerings)

    Anandagarbha states the four goddesses bestow the Diadem Initiation of the Families: Ragavajra--Akshobya, Kilikila--Ratna, Vajrasmrti--Amitabha, and Kamesvari--Amoghasiddhi. The body of Vajrasattva is the four goddesses, which means Bodhicitta exists in understanding, realization, non-abandonment, and gnostic attainment. Again this makes a close parallel to Four Activities. So if we have heard of Bodhicitta, but do not really understand it, we lack the second secret no matter how many words we throw at it. If we do not understand, then Vajrasattva's mind, our inner bond with harmony, will waver. Therefor, this ring is a definite stage on the Path which lasts as long as it needs to. Its attainment is a stable ability of Bodhi Mind to be seated in the physical brain and begin to affect the environment and outer objects.

    One can see the hand symbol is Vajra which is held by Mahavajradhara, who apparently is named Paramadya for this. The volume of information available about the Vajra now is enormous, but, it is made of a central spoke with four curved prongs around it, so generally is the same as Pancha Jina or Quintessence. From what little I can find, Paramadya is Supreme Original tantra and describes bliss with deities gazing, holding hands, embracing. It defines the androgyne as Prajna Paramita plus Upaya (Means).

    I found two versions of his description:

    "On that side is Mahavajra, holding an arrow upright. His proud embracing hand raises a banner of victory [adorned] with monsters of the sea."


    "To the side is the Great Vajra, who endeavors to brandish an arrow while proudly clasping hands and raising the crocodile banner."

    Those are some of the only translations of it, and in either attempt there appears to be a version of Makara Banner.

    When goddesses are present in the inner ring, they become able to confer the Diadem Initiation of the Four Families.

    It begins talking about the Tri-kaya or Three Vajras as mysteries. Something to personally experience. It is not praising Buddha for his perfections, or asking him to teach them, but to install it via Vajrasattva.

    Then, there are Four Goddesses since Vajrasattva is ordinarily male, but it also begins calling the same group Five Goddesses.

    The great weapon of the great lord who has the supreme success
    (siddhi) that is great, is said to be the five-pronged thunderbolt
    which is the great reality of the five secrets.

    Anandagarbha’s extensive commentary on this verse (PTT. VoL 73,
    p. 127-5 to p. 130), starts by explaining that the “supreme success” is the
    siddhi of Sri-Vajrasattva (the glorious diamond being). The “great lord”
    is Mahavajradhara. The great reality of the five secrets amounts to the
    (1) bodhicitta (mind of enlightenment), (2) understanding it, (3) its realiza-
    tion, (4) its non-abandonment, and (5) the knowledge characterized by
    attainment; and these are represented by five goddesses, who are “seals”
    (mudra) arising from the Body, Speech, and Mind diamonds (vajra) of
    Mahavajradhara. Observe that the source is again the “three mysteries of
    the Buddha.”

    And so if Vajrasattva is questionably called a goddess, and described as having Sukha (female) and Unwasted Vajra (male), then "he" really is Androgyne. And so he gets this retinue which is perhaps a bit unusual since Raga is in Vajra Family and there is also Kama at the end:

    Bodhicitta---Vajrasattva (who has both the great pleasure and the unwasted vajra)

    Understanding Bodhicitta--Vajra Family Ragavajra (who pleases Vajrasattva's mind so he will not swerve from the thought of enlightenment)

    Realization of Bodhicitta--Ratna Family Vajrakilikila (Joyful utterance, the pledge to arouse attachment to the great pleasure and unwasted vajra)

    Non-abandonment--Dharma Family Vajrasmrti (unshattered, victory over lust, etc.)

    Knowledge characterized by Attainment--Karma Family Vajrakamesvari (sensory objects materialized by Vajrasattva)

    It follows from the explanation of Vajrasattva that his inclusion in the five
    goddess group is simply because he has the “great pleasure” which must be
    counted as female in contrast with the “unwasted vajra'" which is male.
    This is the closest this literature comes to the “passive-active” polarity.
    It is because Vajrasattva is androgyne that both men and women can
    practice the Tantras as yogins and yoginis.

    And so it is from these one would learn the Four Seals.

    The Fourth Activity enacted by Kama Ishvari above is the correct way to look at Krtyausthana Jana or Amoghasiddhi. Yes, the North pretty much always indicates knowledge or ability gained by a rite, but that is the Wisdom of Amoghasiddhi, Krtyausthana, entirely arcane.

    In its linguistics or tantric process, Paramadya Tantra increases Vajrasattva from Prajna-Upaya to Mahasukha-Unwasted Vajra, or Bliss. This is due to mantra, the throat is Sambhoga chakra. Paramadya's goddesses are Four Activities in a Vajrasattva theme, having Ragavajra or Passion to please Vajrasattva's mind so he will not swerve from the thought of Enlightenment, Joyful Utterance Vajra Kili Kila arouses a pledge to remain attached to mahasukha-unwasted vajra, Vajrasmrti is unshattered by the poisons, Vajra Kameshvari, Queen of Desires, Objects Manifested by Vajrasattva. is Gnosis. This makes the hand symbol, five pronged vajra of Vajradhara.

    Paramadya is physically beside Vajramrita Tantra in the Tibetan canon, is considered Ratna or Qualities tantra, and is the basis for Dakini Jala.

    The Diadem Initiation is more commonly called Crown Initiation, which is second in the Kalachakra method. According to Mkhas-grub-je, it produces Usnisa Siraskata. At Buddha's Enlightenment, it was the last initiation before Abhisambodhi. People are not sure how to interpret siraskata, it is a Laksana or mark of perfection, which is not on Brahmanical Mahapurusa, but is a Buddhist feature, the Crown Protuberance, the Great Coronal Dome.

    Although it may look like it is at different "degrees" according to which classification is used, it generally is about the same thing at the same place in the pattern. It has to do with being the recipient of a Five Buddha Crown. Is there a basic Sadhanamala deity that has this, yes, Four Arm Sita Tara. Therefor if she has do do with sealing all of these initiations, and her name is shared with the more open Two Arm Mrtyuvacana, and that above or after her is Six Arm Sukla Tara, there, you have a simple White Tara correspondence to the Chakrasamvara and Hevajra system, which is based on similarly-scaling forms in union. The main Four Arm Sita is doing Blue Lotus Mudra like the basic Karma Family Taras.

    Now in the sense that these early tantras are not about "your personal deity" but they are about an exercise of Vajrasattva, we were told to just visualize him without any seed syllable. Sometimes Tara is the same way, but, she actually is a Yidam that usually arises from the syllable Tam. Therefor in the long run, so to speak, she is viable for such an Abhisambodhi Sequence which uses a syllable. But for the time being, Vajrasattva is trying to find out about the main item he holds, Vajra.

    Non-dual Blissful Vajrasattva uses Four Activities to develop Usnisa or Crown in a Buddhist manner, which is the mark of Jewel Family. Even if Jewel is not emphasized in the beginning, it becomes the definition of the crown center. Usnisa and Mahasukha Chakra are the same. The first, Usnisa--Tathagata Family, is perhaps its emanation or presence, Om-like, primal radiation, the second, Mahasukha or Jewel, being our use or recharging it with Amrita. In the Kriya tantras, it is taught that Usnisa deities are all in Tathagata Family, which then appears contradictory if the most common one, Usnisa Vijaya, is shown as an emanation of Amitabha. The male Usnisa deities are used in a minority lineage of Sarvadurgati Parishodhana, which uses Navosnisa for Body Mandala. I have not yet found the females emanated and arrayed in a similar pratice; Vimala Usnisa is mainly for funerals, and there is another, Jvala Usnisa. As a class these a pretty specific, Usnisa Vijaya very useful for purifying death, intermediate state, and rebirth. However on a dharani basis the Arch Queen of them all is Sitatapatra Parasol, who has, I believe, the fourth Paramartha practice I have found. She commandeers the subject completely, which is also to say if you have such an Usnisa or Crown, she does worlds of good for it.

    So, if you did a "practice visualization Abhisambodhi", it would be nowhere near an actual one which relies on the power of the Crown Initiation. It is possible to actually achieve it, in which case it would simply be not perfect like Buddha's.

    The Generation Stage goddesses called Gauris are Buddhist, their mantras were adopted from those of members of the retinue of Vajrajvālānalārka given in the “Mantrakhaṇḍa” of the Paramādyatantra, which itself is the major basis of Dakini Jala. "Illustrated History" explains that Vajrajvalankara is Candisvari, and Paramadya uses the goddesses Vajraśrī (Prajnaparamita), Vajragaurī, Vajratārā, and Khavajriṇī (related to Akashagarbha, and Karma Paramita, as these are all secret names of four paramitas).

    So i. e. this is talking about a different mandala than Wayman is, the one with a single reference at the beginning here.

    In Paramadya, Trailokyavijaya absorbs Vajrajvalana. Without having all the details, it makes sense that roughly put, a Bliss-arisen Gnostic being is going to converge with something triumphant over death. This is how it is explained in Vajra Rosary Tantra and seems to categorize Peaceful and Wrathful practice working together.

    In Paramadya, multi-colored deities include Amoghasiddhi and Namkha Dzo, which apparently is a mantra related to Bodhicitta of Application and the Four Immeasurables. This appearance is used repeatedly in the tantras almost always with Karma Family. And so if we look at why "white" is such a cradle of origin, and "green" is in samadhi or is in the last Family and something weird happens to it, this is what happens. Green is considered the most material or most compounded color. And so when we start to change our perception of light, in the tantras, green melts or unpeels into its primary constituents, white, blue, and yellow. Because the sensation might be a little more lively than this, the Family member may show all colors, and look more Active or more of a dancer than the rest of the retinue.

    Bu-ston comments Paramadya also including:

    Content synopsis: directions for the sacred dance performances (nrtyapuja) performed by the 12 devis of the paramadya tantra and the four guhyamatr of the vajrasekhara tantra

    Mitra Yogin's 108 Mandalas is a Japanese version wherein the author also clearly describes that Vajraraudris are only in Samputa and only in the NSP version, and not known in Abhisamayamuktamala. The author did not add Samputa to their titles (15 to 18) which keeps this masked. However it does connect Samputa Vajrasattva with Paramadya, which is also in there, which is the original explanation of gnostic Vajrasattva. He also finds it odd that the Vajramrita mandalas match a Vajra Family pattern.

    Same author as "Illustrated History of the Mandala".

    In the Paramadya Sixty-one deity mandala he says:

    Paramadya Vajrasattva is the first mandala in the Paramadya Tantra, which is a development of Prajnaparamita Sutra.

    The inner retinue includes:

    Vajramanodbhava, Kelikila, Vajranismara, Vajragarva.

    Offering Goddesses of the Four Seasons, Vajrarati, Maharatavajri, Vajralocani, Mahasri (same as in Rishu-e of oriental Vajradhatu mandala).

    Akshobhya, Ratnasambhava, Amitabha, Amoghasiddhi, each with two Bodhisattvas.

    Four doubled Gatekeepers Rupa, Sabda, Gandha, Rasa, and Four Corner Goddesses Lasya, Hasya, Gita, Nritya.

    Four groups of seven unnamed protective deities.

    If this is the first Paramadya mandala, it may have a male inner ring, and then Wayman probably studied a further one, and then there is another one which involves the Tri-Shakti. If so, this "Hindu conversion" may have been a known practice that was written into STTS, rather than coming *from* it. That is the sense I get from the majority of writings, that they record something that was already done on a spoken basis.

    Red is east and blue is west, although the Dhyani Buddhas are in regular order.

    In the Hahn Foundation handscrolls, nine mandalas have "weird" colors: Vairocana Manjuvajra, four kinds of nine-deity Hevajra, Buddhakapala, Jnanadakini, Navosnisa, and Paramadya Vajrasattva (M34 as described here).

    Although they have scores of published images, I cannot find Paramadya. They did however have a lovely Padma Tara:

    In Mitra Gyatsa practices, Paramadya is still obscure:

    For Yoga Tantra, he has Namasangiti and Prajnaparamita, but, more emphatically, starts it in mostly the same way as Sarvadurgati Parishodana--i. e. you can see its mandalas tabbed out as individual practices:

    25. Navoshnisha 37Deity
    26. Sarvadurgati Root Mandala 101 Deity
    27. Amitayus Vak Mandala 13 Deity
    28. Vajrapani Chitta Mandala 13 Deity
    29. Sukhavati Guna Mandala 8 and 44 Deity
    30. Jvalankara Karma Mandala 17 Deity
    31. Vajrapani and the Four Kings 23 Deity
    32. Vajrapani and Eight Planets 45 Deity
    33. Vajrapani and Eight Great Nagas 13 Deity
    34. Vajradhatu Mandala 53 Deity
    35. Trailokyavijaya 53 Deity
    36. Gathering All Beings 53 Deity
    37. Amoghasiddhi 53 Deity
    38. Paramadya (?)

    So he is pretty closely tying Paramadya to Sarvadurgati, even if the site does not know the retinue or what it is talking about.

    In Highest Yoga, he binds together Guhyasamaja Manjuvajra, Shastradhara Weapon Hevajra from Samputa Tantra, Seven Syllable deity, and Cinnamasta. He also gives a Six Family Wheel like Dakini Jala, followed by Jinasagara with Guhyajnana Dakini, Vajra Tara, and Suryagupta Tara.

    That is a pretty tight binding of some of the unique lineages we are looking at.

    In the tantras we have found a decided lack of Paramadya material, which has been described as fundamental, and, fortunately, Illustrated History of the Mandala. And its subject is Seventeen Deities, or, that is an important part of where mandala retinues come from.

    Unfortunately we cannot freely display this book, so, by examining the table of contents, Chapter Three studies the topics:

    Prajnaparamita Sutra is a system of Eighteen Mandalas related to Vajrasekhara

    Seventeen Vishuddhi Padas are the seventeen deity mandala

    Vajrasattva is the center

    Paramadya Mandala

    Chapter Four goes on to Vajradhatu Mandala, which is what we mean by Vairocana Tantra since it goes on to Navosnisa Sarvadurgati Parishodana and Dharmadhatu Vagisvara.

    Chapter Five is Guhyasamaja and Maya Jala.

    Chapter Six is:

    Dakini Jala Samayoga

    Paramadya into Samayoga



    And so Seventeen Deity Vajrasattva is the "representative" mandala of Prajnaparamita Sutra, with, they say, the main version being Parama Rahasya in the Mantrakhanda portion of the Chinese translation of Paramadya.

    This one is a basic male version which gets "spiced up" in Paramadya. Male gods are in the cardinal directions and females in the corners.

    The purifications are for instance, Rasa Vajra = Rasa Vishuddhi. We cannot see the page that gives the first five. In the mandala that was available, the Four Seasons goddesses were placed in the inner ring; usually they would be found outermost. The retinue as such and the Vishuddhipadas we can find are:

    Vajra Manodbhava, Vajra Kilikila, Vajra Nismara, Vajra Garva, followed by Madhuvajri (Bhusana), Vajra Megha (Aladhana), Sarada Vajra (Aloka), and Hemanta Vajra (Kayasukha).

    Rupa Vajra, Sabda Vajra, Gandha Vajra, Rasa Vajra, followed by Lasya (Dristi), Hasya (Rati), Gita (Trsta), and Nrrtya (Garva).

    Vishuddhi is the act of purifying defilements by applying deities to them.

    Amoghavajra's Vishuddhipadas match those in Anandagarbha's Paramadya commentary, so, the Chinese and Indian systems are the same to this point. The current oriental Four Bodhisattvas of Directions are still the same as given above.

    Madhuvajri is (10), bhusana visuddhipada--Flowers, Vajramegha is (11) ahladana visuddhipada; Dhupa is Prahladani in STTS, so Vajramegha = Dhupa. These with Saradavajra (Aloka) and Hemantavajra (Gandha) follow the order of the Visuddhipadas, whereas the Vajradhatu systems change the order to categorize them by Five Families.

    According to a study in visuddhipada thought, Anandagarbha says the first or Surata Visuddhi Pada has sixteen more visuddhis in four sets of four which have Paramartha and Samvrtti aspects.

    Pada--foot, or feet--has the extended meaning of "subject of explanation", same as with the Vaja Pada of RGV. "Darsana sukha visuddhi pada" has as its aim Anuttara Samyak Saumbuddha, Complete Manifest Buddha, so its contents are the same as the Bodhisattva Pada, according to Kuei chi. When you look at the world through real mental eyes, that is Prajnaparamita, from which standpoint the Elements are nothing but Purity. The following commentary therefor is applicable to Putiry mantra, sometimes called Svabhava:

    In the Prajnaparamitanaya-kanda, this svabhavavisuddhi of every element is explained in three stages, i.e., svabhava-sunya, svabhava-viraga and svabhavasanti.

    Surata-visuddhi corresponds to Svalaksana-prajnaparamita, Prajnapamita corresponds to vipasyana-prajnaparamita, and Bodhisattva-padartha corresponds to Padaprajnaparamita. Beside "Prajnaparamitanaya-kanda", complicated explanations and analyses are all omitted. and simply represented as every element is svabhava-visuddhi in its own nature.

    Prakrti visuddha, the upper domain of having done such purifications attains a familiar quality:

    Prakriti Prabhasvara which is akara and avikalpa.

    After Prajnaparamita Sutra, this becomes commonly-referred to.

    Maharaga-visuddhi or Surata-visuddhi is not only the theory of enlightenment, but also the representation of svabhava-visuddhi or svabhava-sunya in its own nature. In other words, this is the literal explanation of the the Padaprajha (文字、般若) as vipayanapraja (観照般若).

    As far as the natures of the inner ring, I can only get "Vajramanodbhava, symbolizing desire, holds an arrow, the symbol of the god of love; Vajrakīlikīla, symbolizing touch, embraces ..."

    Alex Wayman has a long quote from Paramadya using Anuraga as the Method for executing the Four Seals. Paramadya Raga is based in Anuraga, which would not generally get my attention, but, recently showed up as the word for a feeling I have never known a word for, other than perhaps symbolicly, Phoenix.

    STTS calls Lasya the "consort of Vajrasattva", Vajrasattvadayita.

    In some related sub-mandalas, Vairocana is shown with Outer Offerings, Vajrasattva with Inner Offerings, which may have to do with why the locations of the Offerings are transposed between the Vajradhatu mandala and the Prajnaparamita mandala.

    Paramadya's Prajnakhanda is the first of the tantra's iterations in the Tibetan canon; its Mantrakhanda is incorporated in the title of the second half.

    Caryamelapakapradipa quotes the seventeen Visuddhipadas from the opening of Prajnakhanda. These chapters are taken from Mahasukhavajramoghasamaya, the second half from Mahasukhaguhyavajra. It does, but is limited to:

    As is said in the {Great} Yoga Tantra, the ( Glorious) Supreme
    The state of purified passion - that is the state of the
    The state of purified hatred- that is the state of the
    The state of purified ignorance - that is the state of the

    Again the available pdf was made from a few original manuscripts and it does not seem to have seventeen.

    Anandagarbha's Paramaditika says the first part, Prajnakhanda, contains fifteen mandalas: Vajra, Tathagata, Trailokyavijaya, Avalokiteshvara, Akasagarbha, Vajramusti, Manjushri, Vajracakra, Gaganaganja, Vajrayaksha (Sarvamarapramardin), Assembly, Shiva, Matrka, Three Brothers, Four Sisters.

    Part Two, Mantrakhanda, contains a Mula Tantra and an Uttara Tantra. The ten mandalas of the Mula Tantra are Vajrasattva, Tathagata, Krodhasuratavajra, Avalokiteshvara, Maniratnakula = Akasagarbha, Assembly, Three Brothers, Four Sisters, Asura, and Naga, found in Chapters Fifteen to Twenty.

    The Uttara Tantra has nine mandalas, Mahasukhamahavajra, Sarvatathagata, Vajrajvalanalarka, Avalokiteshvara, Akasagarbha, Three Brothers, Four Sisters, Naga, Assembly.

    Tri-samaya and Five Secrets are part of its pata or instructions.

    As this has three main sections which may have been independent tantras joined together, there is a similar retinue around the evolving central figure which represents Outer Vajra Family, Vajrasattva, and then Mahasukhamahavajra.

    Anadagarbha's lack of additional details suggests that re-iterations of the same mandalas are basically the same.

    The translator thinks the main three mandalas are assemblies six, seven, and eight in Vajrasekhara.

    All the Paramadya mandalas are in the south chapel of Shalu Monastery in poor condition.

    The first or Paramadya Mandala is in the Ngor mandalas and is M34. The Dhyani Buddhas have an unusual color scheme and it is thought they were a later addition. If Hasya is replaced by Mala, there are the same Inner Offering goddesses as in Vajradhatu.

    The Mahasamayasattvavajra of the Paramadya states the gates should contain symbols of the four senses, which are the four final vishuddhipada. The deities hold a Mirror, a Vina, a Conch Shell with Incense, and a Container for Food Offerings. In the Prajnakhanda they are "doubled", whereas in later editions, the regular Outer Gatekeepers are mixed in.

    The outside is supposed to have Kamadhatu deities such as Sakra, Brahma, and Shiva, and others similar to Vajradhatu.

    We miss the beginning of the next mandala description which implies the couples, Narayana and Sri, Trailokyavijaya Candisvara and Gauri, Avalokiteshvara and Tara, Akasagarbha and Khavajrini. It expresses Vairocana as Vishnu--Narayan, which, conceivably, is why this might be a Jewel Family tantra, since that is never otherwise the case that I am aware of. Examples of this mandala are not found in sadhana catalogs, but it is at Shalu. Same place with the concealed room with the big Sadaksari mural.

    The wrathful reflex of Akasagarbha is Mamo Botong as in "Pacification of the Mamos" or Ekajati or Queen of Space or of the Matrikas. For metrical reasons, his name is later reduced to Khagarbha, but we see how that fits with Khavajrini, and Kha becomes a standard syllable for Karma Family which is Akash Bija or syllable of sky or space. Here, it appears it would be in the more mundane classification of "Air" in the mandala's ring, and yet that position suggests it is a new lesson to be achieved here.

    Wayman is following Anandagarbha commenting Paramadya about the subject of Inner Guru which he calls presiding deity:

    “One’s presiding deity is kamadeva. The
    conviction that his diamonds of body, speech, and mind are one’s own —
    with a praxis that it is really so — is the meaning of yoga. The “presiding
    deity” appears to mean the same as the “tutelary deity” (ista-devata), or
    the deity which the disciple serves with daily devotions and enshrines in
    the heart."

    Wayman is not completely correct, in that Inner Guru is not necessarily identical to Ishta Devata. Inner Guru can make any Ishvar work and that is how he speaks, Vajradhara himself does not have forms, he enables something like a Thousand Arm Avalokiteshvar or Parasol to light up.

    Since Paramadya is a tantra, it goes on to the Reality of the Hand Symbol (Vajra), and to the subject of Vajra in Lotus.

    Pramadya surprisingly ends like Guhyasamaja. The latter talks about thirty-eight classes of samadhi from initial training up to the hundred lineages, it then talks about after-stability, so one remains in inseparable void ecstasy, the union of vajra and lotus or Vajrapadmasamayoga:

    By the yoga of '‘after-stability' one is ever stabilized. That
    practice in all thoughts is called ‘practice of mantras’.

    Whatever the sense basis and whatever its path ( — sense
    object), precisely that approach in its own-being leads
    to all Buddha-equality by the yoga of ‘after’-stability.

    Accordingly, the asamahita is the place
    in the intervals by means of‘divine pride’ ( devata-garva ). The
    two of them do not exist separately in the yughanaddha-krama
    because there is a single own-being of ‘profound concentration’

    So the Yoga techniques and samadhis should make a seamless garment to outer activities. The process shows us to cash in our old Garva and get a new one.

    Paramadya similarly says:

    Whatever the sense basis and whatever its path, he should
    act in the own-being of the former and the latter. By
    yoga after stability, he will unite with his own presiding
    lord ( adhideia ). By this very yoga he will accomplish
    everything. He will always see and perfect all the Buddha

    In the same way, the Sriparamadya also teaches as follows:

    It is [a practitioner] himself who is all Buddhas and all heroes(?). He
    should therefore accomplish himself by the yoga of his chosen deity.
    By practicing asceticism and keeping endurable observance, his body is
    pained and [therefore] weakened. If [the body] is pained, the mind be-
    comes distracted. If the mind is distracted, the accomplishment is not
    realised. By comfort of the mind and the body, all comfort becomes sta-
    ble. [On the other hand,] it becomes unstable (calanam ayati) and also
    annihilated (nirodhas capi gacchati) by the pain.

    This verse is found in Dakini Jala.

    What we can take away from Paramadya is Four Activities in relation to Bodhi, and that goddesses convey the Crown Initiation. Vishuddhi or Purification is replacing defilements with deities. STTS is a serious workhorse of Four Activities. If I am not really doing the full mandala practice, nothing stops me from generating Vajrasattva over my head and looking at a retinue ring around me and absorbing its message and what it does. Or I can focus them on an individual basis, and so on. Tara tantra was for some reason almost necessary to show much about Padma Tara, but it, correspondingly, has a section that just deals with raising simple Taras of these Four Activities individually same as Padma. And so if we mix that sort of availability as close to the inner meaning of Paramadya as we can, that is a very good orientation to the presence of this activities rhythm which continues in all of the tantras, and to the Families themselves. It is heavily practiced.

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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    Dakini Jala and STTS, Sattvavajri

    One of the unconventional things I have done on my own here is to use Dakini Jala as short for:


    because, in most of the references, it is called Samayoga, or, "the Samvara". But it is Dakini Jala in the Chakrasamvara mantra and other references such as colophons explaining subtle yoga. So, if we understand alterations to its title, then, we see it lies with a certain class of literature and the lineages that emphasize Yoga Tantra or Generation Stage:

    Along with Bu-ston, Anandagarbha was a major exponent of Yoga Tantra, especially on STTS, Sarvabuddhasamayoga, Mayajala, Sarvadurgatiparishodhana, Guhyasamaja and Paramadya. There is furthermore one sadhana, the Vajrajvalodaya-sadhanopayika, still available in Sanskrit, which was not translated into Tibetan.

    King Dharmapala had Jnanapada and Haribhadra for preceptors, and started Vikramasila University. He made thirty-five Prajnaparamita centers and numerous tantric ones; Jnanapada mainly spread the Guhyasamaja, Mayajala, Sarvabuddha Samayoga, Candra Guhya Tilaka, and Manjushri Krodha. He used introductory Kriya tantras in a limited way. Some monks from Ceylon did make trouble by attacking tantra as a money-making scheme. Kriya tantra is mainly intended for the Brahmin class, outer tantras are for the upper classes, but Anuttara or Yoganiruttara Tantra is for the working class. So there is an inverse relationship of simplicity or rote to the social classes expected to employ that style most, with the profound meaning intended for the lower class generally. The Vajravali system of Abhaya stems from the system of Jnanapada. This is distinguished by Guhyasamaja Manjuvajra with the large Cunda.

    According to Wayne Verrill, Chakrasamvara Root Tantra (Laghusamvara) separates Sarva Buddha Samayoga as not being "limited", in that Tattvasamgraha, Guhyagarbha, Paramadya, and Vajrabhairava mostly use mantra repetition and fire offerings, i. e., external ritual actions, which is truncated and performed in Chakrasamvara by meditation alone. The Samayoga is not limited that way, and may also be taken as Mother tantra. We do not know all of its individual retinues, but, they are all Gauri class or Asta Vijnana of that Family, Generation Stage. Samayoga is almost exactly like Namasangiti, a Yoga class writing that nevertheless is capable of a Highest Yoga commentary.

    That is why we mainly want to get the inner meaning from Paramadya and Tattvasamgraha or STTS and then instead of directing ourselves to years of their repetitive outer actions, upgrade through the levels of tantra and go into Yoga. And from there if we look into Dakini Jala, we can then find where it lies in a compendium of Sarma Completion Stage tantric texts. Chakrasamvara is a product of it, and Vajramrita arose from its practice. Moreover, it has a tremendous occult clue with Ghasmari who is among the most powerful devis, in such a way as we will unpack her from STTS and she can enter the higher stages of the hypostasis out of Varuni. First we are trying to use preliminary practices to conjure Amrita or Nectar which is Varuni.

    One of the most powerful tantras that we at most are merely understudying is Vajra Panjara. Further, this system has outer practices based on White Pratisara, White Prajnaparamita, and Vajra Tara, which we may use. In its synopsis of interconnected practices, Panjara uses the term "Vajradaka" for Father Tantra (Mahayoga), and "Yogini" for Mother Tantra. It says:

    Vajradaka tantras bring benefit to other beings, i. e., emphasize method, and has four root tantras:

    1. Delightful Dakini or Dakini Ecstasy is Sarva Buddha Samayoga

    2. Ocean of Ecstasy is Dakarnava Tantra

    3. Space or Equal to Space is Khasama Tantra

    4. Golden Rain is Chaturpitha Tantra

    And four explanatory tantras:

    5. Great Pleasure or Secret Moon is Candra Guhya Tilaka Tantra

    6. Ghasmari or Power of Food is Samputa Tantra (Seven Secrets)

    7. Extreme Amusement or Secret Enjoyment

    8. Secret Charm or Great Ecstatic Charm

    Yogini Tantras:

    1. Hevajra

    2. Secret Treasury

    3. Source of Vajra Nectar -- Vajramrita Tantra (explanatory for Secret Treasury)

    4. Union of Chakras -- Chakrasamvara Tantra

    5. Canopy -- Vajra Panjara Tantra (explanatory for Hevajra)

    6. Source or Heruka Manifestation -- Heruka Bhudaya Tantra (explanatory for Chakrasamvara)

    So we are headed in the right direction with Dakini Jala and Equal to the End of the Sky or Khasama. They also let us know that Ghasmari refers to Samputa, which is not obvious. It is the main Vajrasattva explanation for Completion Stage, shown by its early position in Nispanna Yogavali. In the Yogini tantras, we can work towards a halfway decent understanding of Vajramrita, and the sixth is synonymous to Samvarodaya, which is where Vajrasattva and Vairocani are going.

    We are left knowing that Sarva Buddha Samayoga Dakini Jala Samvara is expanded from Paramadya, meaning its main retinue is.

    This is saying something like to have a Six Family practice, it has to have its Sixth member, Vajrasattva, who is not really a primordial sense or sin like the first five. This seems closely paralleled on the goddess side with a similar type of summoning and entry of Dharmadhatu Ishvari; or, we should say in the retinues, first there is Dhamadhatu Vajra or Mental Object, who may take on specific names such as Vajrasattvatmika, Nairatma, etc.

    If we look at a slightly different Nyingma classification of tantra, Sarvabuddhasamāyoga ḍākinī jāla śaṃvara is the full name of Body practice in Mahayoga. Longchenpa and Mipham drew from root Samvara for their classification of practices of the eighteen Mahayoga tantras normally done in Nyingma:

    (1) Enlightened body: Union with Buddha (Skt. buddhasamāyoga, i. e. Dakini Jala)
    (2) Enlightened speech: Secret Vital Essence of the Moon (Skt. śrī candra guhya tilaka nāma mahā tantra rāja, i. e. Vajrapani)
    (3) Enlightened mind: Gathering of Secrets (Skt. guhyasamāja)
    (4) Enlightened qualities: Glorious Supreme Beginning (Skt. śrī paramādya)
    (5) Enlightened activity: Garland of Activity (Skt. karmamāla)

    As for the correspondence between this system and Sarma:

    mahayoga is known as the foundation of all three inner tantras, focusing mainly on the development stage...The great Mipham writes, “One must learn the tantric trainings by relying on mahayoga as it teaches the ground, path, and result of all tantric cycles.”

    The lower tantras just don't contain those teachings, and the higher ones or Path and Result will not work without the Grounds.

    The second STTS study compares Yoga Tantra to Mahayoga.

    Dakini Jala is a bit like Tara; if we look at some of the original names, they are more informative. Its corresponding names of the Dhyani Buddhas are:

    Akshobhya: Heruka (i. e. a class of successful yoga)

    Amitabha: Padmanarttesvara (Lord of the Dance and in Sadhanamala with Padma Tara, i. e. tantric Avalokiteshvara or Padmajala)

    Ratnasambhava: Vajrasurya (Secret Sun as in Sarvadurgati Parishodhana and with Vajra Tara)

    Amoghasiddhi: Paramasva (usually mistaken for Hayagriva but also has the Four Faces of Brahma)

    In this, each Buddha has his own court, most of which consist of Seventeen goddesses "unique to him", and then a set of Gatekeepers that is common to all and not really counted. There are two main ways of arranging the mandalas. The second, or Vajrasattva-centered mandala scheme in Dakini Jala has Vairocana East, Heruka South, Padmanartesvara West, and Vajrasurya North. Paramasva Family has four mandalas in the corners; in Chaturangarthaloka, Humkarakirti describes these as Four Activities, although an example has not been found in Tibet.

    On a flat painting, something is shown "above" the five-fold Pancha Jina just by jamming it in. Here, you can see the upper right figure is Blue, similar to the central one, and these are usually showing a hypostasis of Akshobhya and Vajrasattva, one above the other in a 1400s Sakya:

    We would guess that the first or Heruka-centered format in Dakini Jala is supposed to designate an "above" mandala like in Six Chakravartins, but we are not told. We see two main methods of deploying the Families like the Zhitro Peaceful and Wrathful Hundred, and what is missing seems to be the inner nucleus or the Dhyani's own Pancha Jina, which is found in Hevajra, Completion Stage seems to add that. And so these Gauris of Dakini Jala are supposed to mark a major mental and physiological barrier, or change of state, like ice turning to water, it takes time and energy. Primarily, it is showing each Dhyani with Peaceful and Wrathful Bodhisattva Offering Goddesses.

    At the least, it guides us to Asta Vijnana and Bodhisattva Inner Offerings, which can be done peacefully in a Mt. Meru style, or wrathfully at the cemeteries. Offerings may be previously known by rote, if done only as Kriya or an outer activity, you would be familiar with flowers and incense and so forth, but the point Chakrasamvara is making is that most of these outer rites are transferred internally into meditation. Not everyone has an abundant Flower Offering to make all the time. But everyone has a Sense of Touch which can be deified into a piece of mental silk which is offered in a visualization.

    And so Dakini Jala appears to apply Gauris and Offering Goddesses as retinues, or, roughly put, a Paramadya format plus Gauris.

    It is trying to "unlimit" STTS from external to internal practice. And so in STTS retinues, the original grouping in the ring appears to be:

    the four Paramitas, i.e. Sattvavajri, Ratnavajri,
    Dharmavajri and Karmavajri, the four Internal Offerings (Pujas), i.e. Vajralasya,
    Vajramala, Vajragita and Vajranrtya

    According to Sakyamitra, the Symbol-consorts refer to the four Paramitas, i.e. Sattvavajri symbolising ‘perfection of knowledge (jnana)’, Ratnavajri ‘perfection of generosity {dana)', Dharmavajri symbolising ‘perfection of wisdom (prajna)', and Karmavajri symbolising ‘perfection of exertion (virya).

    Lasya, et al, are used as inner offerings, distinguished from the outer offerings of incense and the rest. It is such an Inner Offering that marks the break from rote Kriya--Charya into Yoga having symbols translated into experienced states of consciousness. In general usage, it is almost "any" kind of rite or honor, but in Buddhism, Puja specifically means such an Inner Offering which, with training, becomes the Five Nectar or Panchamrita Inner Offering of the tantras.

    The STTS idea is that they are Bodhisattvas, Vajris being the Mudras:

    Then, in order to seal the knowledge of each (Tathagata) family
    with a mudra, the four Mudra-Masters (i.e. Sattvavajri,
    Ratnavajri, Dharmavajri and Karmavajri) should transform each of
    the four mudras abiding in each quarter.

    The four Secret Offerings, namely, Vajralasya, (Vajramala, Vajragita and
    Vajranrtya) are Pleasure in the Thought of Enlightenment, Garland
    of all the Tathagatas, Melody of all the Tathagatas and Drama of
    all the Tathagatas. Since these become the highest, they are placed
    as the form having the nature of the Great Goddess of the family.

    The four (External Offerings), namely, Vajradhupa, (Vajrapuspa,
    Vajraloka and Vajragandha) are Very Purifying, the Flower of the
    Qualities of Enlightenment, the Lamp of Knowledge and the Scent
    of Moral Conduct. The four Guardians (i.e. Vajrankusa,
    Vajrapasa, Vajrasphota and Vajravesa) are Heart, Affection
    toward Living Beings, Exertion of Teaching and Perfection of

    It is trying to build Vajravesa, the "yoga with Vajrasattva" or "union with a deity such as Sattvavajri".

    They have roles similar to Paramadya goddesses or at least Lasya appears to.

    The Vajris are Mudras, and Lasya appears here leading a ring of Inner Offerings which "become the highest", also called Pujas or Secret Dance Offerings. This ring is normal in Yoga Tantra, since Lasya also uses a Murti or Form in Sarvadurgati Parishodana:

    catasraḥ kulavarṇakadhāriṇyaḥ||

    sitaṃ pītaṃ
    raktaṃ viśvavarṇakam||

    It is a description of her ring; NSP says there are corner deities in the order, Lasya, Mala, Gita, Nrtya, the next set after the inner ring of Usnisas, the last being multi-colored.

    So we found a Dharani where Lasya is Vajra Possession or Avesa.

    Almost inversely, Lasya eventually becomes the consort of Seven Syllable deity.

    In between her arising in the basic mandalas and that point, Music, Dance, and Offerings are the main kinds of mandala changes along with the Gauris.

    In Sarvadurgati, these seem to perform the rite for Vajra Musti or Fist which appears to represent Vajrosnisa and so i. e., the whole standard practice in many schools.

    From the early tradition of STTS:

    it would seem certain that Buddhaguhya lived in the late eighth century CE,
    and that the complete STTS was composed before that time since Buddhaguhya
    wrote a commentary on it. However, Buddhaguhya's commentary is relatively brief
    and deals mainly with doctrines of the five abhisambodhis and the thirty-seven

    Ok, that is mainly what we are working up a parallel knowledge of. Concerning its origin:

    Sakyamitra is said to have also learned the doctrines of the STTS at Konkana and
    Sahya in Southern India

    Concerning the practical matter of Buddhist Enlightenment:

    According to the Buddhist Scriptures,
    Sakyamuni used the method of controlled breathing as used in the method of the
    imperturbable concentration (asphanaka-samadhi) However, despite controlled
    breathing and fasting, he could not attain enlightenment, so he used a new method
    which had not been previously used by any ascetic. Thus, the author of the STTS
    is suggesting that the five abhisambodhis represent a new method of spiritual
    exercise which was used and performed by Sakyamuni for achieving

    The method of the five abhisambodhis of the STTS is a major contribution to
    Tantric Buddhism. The five abhisambodhis are the most effective expedient
    established in Yoga-Tantra Buddhism to attain perfect enlightenment, and the five
    stages constitute the direct ways of obtaining the five Wisdoms as the virtues of
    Vairocana. Therefore, paragraphs (k), (1), (m), (n) and (o) correspond to the above
    paragraphs (a), (b), (c), (d) and (e) respectively. Donjaku states that the mantras of
    the five abhisambodhis indicate the samadhis of the five Buddhas. Mkhas-grubtje states that the first abhisambodhi, which is paragraph (lc), is called RevelationEnlightenment resulting from Discrimination (pratyaveksana), the second
    abhisambodhi, which is paragraph (1), is called Revelation-Enlightenment resulting
    from the resolve for the highest enlightenment (paramabodhicittotpada), the third
    abhisambodhi, which is paragraph (m), is called Revelation-Enlightenment
    resulting from the firm thunderbolt (drdha-vajra), the fourth abhisambodhi, which
    is paragraph (n), is called Revelation-Enlightenment resulting from thunderbolt
    composition (Vajratmaka) and the fifth abhisambodhi, which is paragraph (o), is
    called Revelation-Enlightenment resulting from equality with all the Tathagatas
    (sarvatathagata-samata)." Ennin asserts that the first four stages out of the five
    abhisambodhis constitute ‘the position of cause (i.e., progressive stages to
    Buddhahood) and the final fifth stage constitutes ‘the position of fruition (i.e.,
    Buddhahood). Anandagarbha regards the above quotations concerning the five
    abhisambodhis as the first samadhi called the initial yoga. Concerning the last
    section of the above quotations, both Ennin and Donjaku assert that the knowledge
    of the sameness of all the Tathagatas indicates Mirror-like-Wisdom, the secret
    pledge of the knowledge-mudra of the vajra-sameness of all the Tathagatas
    indicates Equality-Wisdom, the knowledge of the sameness of the Dharma of all
    the Tathagatas indicates Discriminating-Wisdom, and the naturally luminous
    knowledge of the complete sameness of all the Tathagatas indicates ActiveWisdom.

    The levels of operation in STTS only begin with Vajradhatu:

    1. Vajra-dhatu (Vajra-sphere)
    2. Tri-loka-vijaya (Conquest of the Three Worlds)
    3. Sakala-jagad-vinaya (Conversion of the Entire World)
    4. Sarva-artha-siddhi (Universal Success).

    Chapter Six Trailokyavijaya is Maheshvara subjugation. This makes a "total package" since Enlightenment on its own is also in Vairocana Abhisambodhi Tantra.

    All the mudras and all the essential factors of the Dharma are
    completely included in the four Knowledge-mudras. Maha-jnanamudra refers to the attainment of the sva-deva-yoga by means of the five abhisambodhis. Samaya-jnana-mudra refers to the
    attainment of the mudra generated from the vajra-bandha (vajrabond) by means of joining both hands. Dharma-jnana-mudra
    refers to the seed-syllable (bija) of the sva-deva, the samadhi of
    the Dharmakaya and the meaning of the letters of all the sutras.
    Karma-jnana-mudra refers to the making of vajra-musti (vajrafist) with both hands as if firmly holding a weapon and pennant,
    and to the holding of the body in a dignified posture

    The STTS mandala series begins with a synonym of Vajradhatu (Maha Mandala):

    maha-mandala, samayamandala (alias dharani-mandala), dharma-mandala and karma-mandala. The
    other two mandalas are catur-mudra-mandala and eka-mudra-mandala.

    One of the earliest known existing mandalas appears to be based in natural order or Rta like Jupiter, being called:

    Meditation on the Five Families of the Rta-samgraha

    followed by:

    Krodha-guhyamudra-mandala or Triloka-vaijaya-samaya-mandala

    In another iteration:

    However, according to Amoghavajra, part one comprises six mandalas, i.e. Vajradhatu Mahamandala,
    Dharammandala, Suksma Vajramandala, Sarvatathagatavistarapuja Karmamandala, Caturmudramandala and Ekamudramandala

    The first mandala is called the maha-mandala of the Vajradhatu. Amoghavajra
    provides the following outline of this chapter:-

    “(This section of the tantra) describes the Enjoyment-body
    (sambhoga-kaya) of the Buddha Vairocana, who has attained
    complete enlightenment (samyak-sambodhi) by means of the five
    consecutive stages of perfect enlightenment (pancaabhisambodhi). Having become a Buddha, he generated the
    thirty-seven knowledges through the vajra-samadhi.

    The attenuation of the circumstances is such that:

    Akanistha heaven as (the state of) the fourth dhyana

    As appears to be his main epithet in several tantras:

    Vajrasattva is ‘Great Thought of Enlightenment {mahabodhicitta}

    some of his cohorts are:

    Vajraratna is ‘Great Consecration {mahabhiseka), Vajratejas is ‘Fathom Circle of
    Splendour (vyamaprabhamandala)\ Vajraketu is ‘Goal of Great Beings
    (mahasattvartha) and Vajrahasa is ‘Great Rapture (mahaharsa) ’. These are
    ‘Beings of the Great Consecration of all the Tathagatas (sarvatathagatamahabhisekasattvas)

    Lotus Family's Dharma Speech principle is a bit esoteric but present:

    Vajradharma is ‘Knowledge of Vajra-Essence (vajradharmatajnana)

    It uses the goddess rings:

    (5) Four Paramita Bodhisattvas:-
    Sattvavajri is ‘Knowledge Pledge of all the Tathagatas (sarvatathagatajnanasamaya), Ratnavajri is ‘Great Consecration {mahabhiseka} Dharmavajri is ‘Vajra Dharmahood (vajradharmata) and Karmavajri is ‘All Worship
    (sarvapuja). These are ‘Paramitas of all the Tathagatas {sarvatathagataparamita}.

    (6) Eight Goddesses of Offering:-
    Vajralasya is ‘Pledge of the Highest Pleasure and Satisfaction of all the Tathagatas
    {sarvatathagatanuttarasukhasaumanasyasamaya)’, Vajramala is ‘Garland of all
    the Tathagatas (sarvatathagatamala)’, Vajragita is ‘Melody of all the Tathagatas
    (sarvatathagatagatha) and Vajranrtya is ‘Highest Performance of Worship of
    all the Tathagatas {sarvatathagatanuttarapujakarmakari). These are ‘Secret
    Offerings of all the Tathagatas (sarvatathdgataguhyapujas) ’.
    Vajradhupa is ‘Entrance of Knowledge of all the Tathagatas (sarvatathagatajnanavesa), Vajrapuspa is ‘Accumulation of Qualities of Great Enlightenment (mahabodhyangasamcaya), Vajraloka is 'Dharma Lamp of all the Tathagatas
    {sarvatathagatadharmaloka} and Vajragandha is ‘Scent of Moral Conduct,
    Concentration, Wisdom, Emancipation and Vision of the Knowledge of
    Emancipation {[stta]samadhiprajnavimuktivimulctijnanadarsanagandha). These are
    ‘Female Servants of all the Tathagatas {sarvatathagatajna[kdryas]) ’.

    (7) Four Guardians of the Mandala Gates
    Vajrankusa, VajrapaSa, Vajrasphota and Vajravesa are ‘Attracting, Entering,
    Binding and Subjugating all the Tathagatas (sarvatathagatasamakarsana,
    pravesa, bandha, vasikarana) respectively. These are ‘Beings who Execute the
    Orders of all the Tathagatas {sarvatathagatajnakaras).

    The Lord Vairocana is endowed with the nature of the
    Dharmadhatu and becomes the supreme teacher of the lords of the
    mandala. He induces Samantabhadra and the five Tathagatas such
    as Aksobhya, consecrates (them) by means of the mudra, the
    activity of generating sattvas, the samadhi and the power of
    empowerment, and makes (them) join in the activities.

    This is about half the roster of beings that flow from Vajrasattva in the first mandala:

    The first Sattva, that is, the Lord Vajrasattva, is the essence of the
    thought of enlightenment. Having generated the thought of
    enlightenment, one should assemble living beings. Therefore, the
    second Sattva is the essence of the four things of the assemblage
    and becomes the means of assembling living beings. Having
    generated the thought of enlightenment and then assembled living
    beings, one should gratify those living beings. Therefore, the third
    Sattva becomes the means of gratifying living beings and is the
    essence of the passion which makes living beings mature and
    liberated. One arouses passion in living beings, and after that, one
    should delight one's spiritual friends in order to make one's mind
    completely mature which is the Bodhisattva-[6/zwmz]. Therefore, the
    fourth Sattva is the essence of making living beings rejoice. These
    four (Sattvas) are the pledges of those who enter the method of the
    mantra-p[mcticQ] concealed by this Mahayana (= the STTS),
    Therefore, they are called the Pledge-sattvas. There is no other
    way of becoming a bodhisattva other than by adhering to them.
    He who says that one should rely on spiritual friends in order to
    make one's mind completely mature, after having delighted (one's
    spiritual friends), receives the consecration from those spiritual
    friends. Therefore, the fifth Consecration-Sattva is the essence of
    the wish-granting-gem (cintamani). Having attained the
    consecration, one will hear and seize the equality of the disposition
    of mind. Therefore, the sixth Sattva becomes the place of the
    splendid wisdom of hearing and thinking, and becomes the place
    of the mandala of brightness. After hearing, one should
    accomplish the perfections (paramitas) such as giving. On
    account of that, the seventh Sattva is the essence of the perfection
    of giving (dana) because one accurately performs in accordance
    with what is heard. After performing, one will generate
    gratification and one rejoices hilly in the dharmas, because of the
    pure vision which is acquired as the result of performing in
    accordance with the dharma that is heard. Therefore, the eighth
    Sattva is the essence of gratifying and rejoicing. Since these four
    (Sattvas) are illustrated by means of the consecration, they are
    known as the Sattvas of the consecration.

    Sequentially, this is followed by the section, "Then, in order to seal the knowledge of each (Tathagata) family
    with a mudra, the four Mudra-Masters..." quoted near the beginning.

    Anandagarbha regards the samadhi of attracting the thirty-two
    deities as the second samadhi called the supreme mandala-king.

    That sounds like Vajradhatu practice generally, You establish the mandala, and then you have to invite the deities to populate it.

    The relationship
    between Vairocana and Vajrasattva can be understood as the fundamental substance
    to the phenomenal function. Kukai asserts that in order to realise perfect
    enlightenment, all living beings need to start with Vajrasattva's empowerment, so
    Vajrasattva is called ‘the Thought of Enlightenment of all the Tathagatas' and all the
    thirty-seven deities are generated from this particular Bodhisattva. Donjaku also
    maintains that Vajrasattva is the cause of Vairocana, and hence Vajrasattva is called
    the Thought of Enlightenment of all the Tathagatas for this reason as well. Part
    one of the Sanskrit STTS emphasises Vajrasattva who is the starting point of
    enlightenment because this part focuses on enlightenment and propounds the tantric
    methods such as the five abhisambodhis.

    Just as for Dakini Jala, the detailed descriptions paraphrased below of the thirty-seven deities
    positioned in the Vajradhatu Mahdmandala are taken from Anandagarbha's

    (6) Sattvavajri: She holds a red five-pronged vajra, and sits on a lotus and moon
    (7) Ratnavajri: She holds a five-pronged vajra attached with the top of the wishgranting-gem, and sits on a lotus and moon seat.
    (8) Dharmavajri: She holds a five-pronged vajra at the entrance to the repository of
    a whitish-red sixteen-petalled lotus with eight petals turn downwards and eight
    petals turn upwards. She sits on a lotus and moon seat.
    (9) Karmavajri: She holds a crossed-vayra made of five colours and twelve prongs,
    i.e. its centre is white, its fore-part is blue, its right part is yellow, its back part is red
    and its left part is like emerald. She sits on a lotus and moon seat.

    (26) Vajralasya: Her body is white. She holds two five-pronged vajras with the
    vajra-fists. Having proudly displayed them with the vcy'm-contempt, she points
    both vajras slightly towards the left.
    (27) Vajramala: Her body is yellow. She consecrates the Tathagatas with a garland
    of gems.
    (28) Vajragita: Her body is pale red. She plucks a vind.
    (29) Vajranrtya: Her body is of the same colour as Vajrakarma's body. She holds a
    three-pronged vajra while making it dance with both her hands.

    For Vajrakarma:

    His face is white. His waist and both his hands are light-blue.
    From below his face to his waist, he is pale red. His thighs are light yellow, and
    from his calves to his feet, he is white.

    (30) Vajradhupa: Her body is white. She satisfies the Tathagatas with the vajraincense-vessel.
    (31) Vajrapuspa: Her body is yellow. She holds a [vq/Wz]-flower-vessel in her left
    hand, and she scatters particles of flowers with her right hand.
    (32) Vajraloka: Her body is pale red. She holds the wick of a lamp and worships
    the Tathagatas delighted by the lamp's brightness.
    (33) Vajragandha: Her body is variegated just like the bodies of Vajranrtya and
    Vajrakarma. She holds the dharma-shell of scent in her left hand, and worships the
    Tathagatas with a scent-cloud held in her right hand

    This mandala also contains the external [kh/Va]-families, i.e., the twenty Hindu
    deities drawn in the external mandala, which appear not in the Vajradhatu
    Mahdmandala but in the Trilokavijaya Mahdmandala of the Sanskrit STTS (ch. 6).

    Another section seems to describe this:

    There are also five groups of deities on the outside (of the
    mandala). Each group consists of four gods and their consorts.
    Thus, all together there are twenty gods and their consorts. The
    five groups of deities consist of the four gods (and their consorts)
    living in the upper-spheres, the four gods (and their consorts)
    living in space (akasa-cara), the four gods (and their consorts)
    wandering in space (antarlksa-cara), the four gods (and their
    consorts) living on the earth, and the four gods (and their
    consorts) living beneath the earth.

    It begins to mix Four Mudras and Four Activities:

    As with the mudras of the chief Samayas, so with
    the mudras of Sattvavajri, (Ratnavajri, Dharmavajri and
    Karmavajri), he should attain the status of Mahasattva,
    pronouncing; 'JAH HUM VAM HOH

    This section deals with the preliminary activities for entering the family of all the
    Tathagatas, which indicates the family of the five Tathagatas. The mudra of
    Sattvavajri is introduced at this stage on the principle that all the Tathagatas by
    nature are generated from Sattvavajri and the other three Paramita Bodhisattvas. In
    connection with the yoga, David Snellgrove interprets the first mantra, ‘SAMAYAS
    TVAM" as ‘You are now the union of your own human body and the
    supramundane element of Buddhahood.’ The second mantra, ‘SAMAYA H U M
    is interpreted as the means for taking possession of the (five) Wisdom of all the

    ‘This pledge~vajra is recalled as Vajrasattva. May the highest
    vajra-knowledge enter you this very day.’

    Then, having closed his fist in anger, (the vajra-master) should
    burst open the mudra of Sattvavajri (of his pupil), and then
    enunciate at will the Mahayanabhisamaya (intuitive
    comprehension of the Mahayana) with the vajra-sound.

    The reason for guiding the pupil into the Vajradhatu Mahdmandala is, in a narrow
    sense, as Toganoo Shoun points out, to open the pupil's ‘heart's-eyes’ called the
    vajra-eyes, which enable the pupil to see the real Buddha world.

    The tantric rituals in the STTS basically start with samadhi, proceed through to
    mandala and end with mudra. The mudra, in a broad sense, can be interpreted
    as the symbolic aspect of sealing a tantric ritual. However, in a narrow sense, it
    refers to the four mudras, namely, maha-mudra, samaya-mudra, dharma-mudra
    and karma-mudra. By means of these mudras, the sadhaka can rapidly attain his

    The metaphysical meaning of the four mudras and their implications relating to the
    mandala can be summarised in the following way. The maha-mudra refers to the
    body of deity and is manifested as the bodily images of deities in the mandala', the
    samaya-mudra refers to the mind of deity and is manifested as the attributes of
    deities in the mandala', the dharma-mudra refers to the speech of deity and is
    manifested as the seed-syllables (bija) of deities in the mandala or as a five pronged vajra which symbolises the knowledge and in the centre of which each
    deity sits cross-legged and holds its own attribute at the heart; and the karmamudra refers to the conduct of a deity and is manifested as the female images of
    deities in the mandala which symbolise the activities of worshipping. These four
    mudras can be also defined as referring to particular types of tantric practices. The
    karma-mudra refers to different activities on the experimental level; the dharmamudra refers to becoming aware of the Absolute itself; the samaya-mudra refers to
    the unity of the divine and the mundane; and the maha-mudra is identified with the
    Great Bliss. Together with the mudras, the pupil should perform the evocation ritual (sadhana), which means using visualisation to realise his own deity, in order to gain the power of his own deity and to be able to use that power to benefit living

    Even though the STTS arranges and explains the four mudras in
    the sequence: maha-, samaya-, dharma- and karma-mudras, Anandagarbha
    rearranges them as the following: samaya-, dharma-, karma- and maha-mudras,
    and asserts that the sadhaka accomplishes with the samaya-mudra, arranges with
    the dharma-mudra, attends to marvellous action with the karma-mudra, and
    stabilises in the manner of consecration with the maha-mudra.

    The exposition of Vajraguhya

    Vajramandala (or Vajraguhya Mahavajramandala) begins with the second
    samadhi called the supreme mandala-king, because the first and third samddhis in
    the STTS appear only once in the samadhi-section of the Vajradhatu
    Mahdmandala. This second samadhi in this chapter enumerates the names of the
    five Tathagatas, the sixteen Mahabodhisattvas, and so forth. The five Tathagatas,
    for instance, are manifested in the form of vidya, i.e. Vajradhatvisvari, Vajravajrini,
    Ratnavajrini, Dharmavajrini and Kamiavajrini, and correspond to the five
    Tathagatas, namely, Vairocana, Aksobhya, Ratnasambhava, Amitabha and
    Amoghasiddhi respectively. According to Amoghavajra, this mandala contains
    thirty-seven deities, all of whom abide in the form of Paramita (Bodhisattvas).
    The Vajraguhya Vajramandala like the Vajradhatu Mahamandala has the same
    number of deities but they are female and have different appearances. The thirty-seven female deities of this mandala are the consorts of the thirty-seven deities of
    the Vajradhatu Mahdmandala. The images of these female deities are shown in the
    Vajradhatu Guhyadharanlmandala of the Gobushinkan, which contains the
    female images of thirty-four deities in total, i.e., Vairocana (though Vajradhatvisvari
    is the counterpart of Vairocana) and the thirty-three female deities excluding the
    four Internal Offerings described in the Sanskrit STTS. Each of the female deities
    drawn in this mandala sits on a lotus and holds her own symbol. In addition, one
    of the four Vajradhatu Mahamandala at Alchi Monastery also consists of all the
    deities having a female appearance,

    349. The sixteen Mahabodhisattvas in this mandala are divided into four family groups, i.e.
    Vajradharanis, Ratnadharanis, Dharmadharanis and Sarvadharanis (or perhaps
    Kamadharanis). Vajradhdranis include (1) Samantabhadra, (2) Tathagatankusi, (3)
    Ratiraga, (4) Sadhumati. Ratnadharanis include (5) Ratnottama, (6) Ratnolka, (7)
    Dhvajagrakeyura, (8) Hasavati. Dharmadharanis include (9) Vajrambuja, (10) Adharani, (11)
    Sarvacakra, (12) Sahasravarta. Sarvadharanis include (13) Siddhottara, (14) Sarvaraksa, (15)
    Tejahpratyaharini, (16) Dharanimudra.
    In addition, there are enumerated the names of the four Paramitas, i.e. Guhyasattvavajri,
    Guhyaratnavajri, Guhyadharmavajri and Guhyakarmavajri, and the four Internal Offerings,
    i.e. Vajraguhyaratipujasamaya (Vajralasya), Vajraguhyabhisekapujasamaya (Vajramala),
    Vajraguhyagitapujasamaya (Vajragita) and Vajraguhyanrtyapujasamaya (Vajranrtya). Though
    the mandala described in this chapter contains thirty-seven deities like the Vajradhatu
    Mahdmandala, the STTS does not provide the names of the four External Offerings and the
    four Guardians

    The section of the mudra-rites of the Vajraguhya Vajramandala includes the
    methods of attaining the four goals, which are entitled [mwr/rd]-knowledge, i.e.
    subjugation, attraction, destruction and pacification. The sadhaka attains these four
    goals by means of his body, vision, speech and mind. The means of binding the
    four mudras are briefly explained in this chapter. Significantly the maha-mudras
    referring to the images of the deities are replaced in the Vajraguhya Vajramandala
    by those referring to the hand gestures, because this mandala represents the
    supreme samaya-mudra and comprises the symbols instead of the images of the

    The next section starting with the words, “Thus, at first, one should teach the
    knowledge of the vajra-secret-body-mudra” and ending with the words,
    ‘ ‘ VAJRA - GUHYA -SAMAYA HAM”, explains the mudra-knowledge for the four
    attainments, i.e. subjugation, attraction, destruction and pacification. This section
    also explains the secret-mudra rite.

    The final section, “While reciting: ‘VAJRASATTVA’ at will, if one performs
    in this pledge {-mandala) all the activities (explained in this) mandala, one can
    become a supreme doer of all attainments.”, includes a summary and concise
    description for accomplishing all the mudra-rites of the Vajraguhya

    The main purpose of the second samadhi called the supreme mandala-king is to
    evoke all the deities, particularly the thirty-seven deities, for the mandala rites.
    Thus, the second samadhi constitutes the doctrinal basis of the mandala because
    each mandala described in the STTS is constructed on the basis of its second

    “The Lord Vajrapani entered the samadhi called Vajra Generated
    from All the Vajradharani-Samayas of All the Tathagatas’. In
    this samadhi, he conceived and emitted the Goddesses of the
    Samaya-mudra of the Vajradhdrani from the hearts of all the
    Tathagatas and he also brought forth the knowledges of the
    Vajradharani of all the Tathagatas and of all the Buddhas in all
    the universes.”

    A stupa (caitya), well placed on the seat
    (paryahka), is called Vajradhdtvlsvarl (Queen of the Vajradhdtu).
    A vajra above a vajra on the seat is named Vajracinta (Vajrathought), A vajra-gem on the seat is named Svabhiseka (Selfconsecration), A vajra-lotus on the seat is named Ayudha (Longlife-holder). An action-vajra (or crossed vajra) on the seat is
    named Sarvavajra (Universal-vajra). These (vajras) are drawn
    above the lotuses and placed inside the luminous mandalas.

    In order to gain these
    attainments four kinds of mudras are performed in this mandala, including the
    body, vision, speech and mind mudras of the Vajraguhya Vajramandala with each
    mudra consisting of four kinds of rites.

    Secret Rite

    The fifth kind of mudra rite included in the section of the mudra-knowledge is the
    meditation on the four Paramitas, i.e. Sattvavajri, Ratnavajri, Dharmavajri and
    Karmavajri respectively. The sadhaka meditates on these four Paramitas while
    beholding them with the four types of eye movements as previously described. This
    rite is called the (secret-) mudra of the Vajra-secret (Vajraguhyamudra):-
    “If one meditates on Sattvavajri in one's heart, and beholds her
    with the vajra-vision, one can take possession of the whole world.
    If one meditates on Ratnavajri in one's heart, and beholds her with
    the flaming-vision, one can subdue all.

    If one meditates on Dharmavajri in one's heart, and beholds her
    with the wrathful-vision, one can destroy the whole world.
    If one meditates on Karmavajri in one's heart, and beholds her
    with the friendliness-vision, one can protect this whole world.

    The word ‘destroying’ from the outside of the tantra signifies ‘gaining the attainments (siddhi)’.

    The Vajraguhya Vajramandala which constitutes the supreme samaya-mudra
    represents the Mind of Vairocana, which is revealed by the thirty-seven female
    deities who are manifested through the samadhi of Vajrasattva or Vajrapani and are
    replaced by their symbols in the constructed mandala. These thirty-seven female
    deities, who symbolise the minds of the thirty-seven deities of the Vajradhatu
    Mahamandala and the Buddha's infinite love, generate the love or passion inside
    the sadhaka's mind, the power by which the sadhaka gains the four attainments, i.e.
    subjugation, attraction, destruction and pacification.

    According to Sakyamitra, the samaya-mudra of the vajra-lotus means the samaya-mudra of
    the Lotus-family, and the essential characteristic of this mudra can be understood from the
    mudra of Sattvavajri.

    Concerning these four symbols occupying the places of the four Paramitas, Anandagarbha adds
    that the place of Sattvavajri is occupied by a wish-granting-gem (cintamani) signified by a
    five-pronged vajra whose top faces the east and is endowed with a blazing (light); that the
    place of Ratnavajri is occupied by a garland of the precious gem; that the place of
    Dharmavajri is occupied by a wish-granting-gem in the centre of the sixteen lotus-petals; and
    that the place of Karmavajri is occupied by a wish-granting-gem encircled by minute jewels.

    The next section starting with the words, “Then” and ending with the
    words, “One gains all the attainments”, describes the means of attaining the
    empowerment (adhisthana), consecration (abhiseka), meditation (samadhi), and
    worship (puja) of all the families. Thus, according to this section, the empowerment
    of all the families is accomplished by means of binding the mudras, i.e. (a) mudra
    of Vajradhatvisvari with a well-concentrated mind, (b) mudra of Sattvavajri with
    the Vajrasattva-[^awdJ/zi], (c) mudra of Vajrahumkara with a well-concentrated
    mind, (d) mudra of Vajrapadma with the Lokesvara-samadhi, (e) mudra of
    Mahavajramani with the Vajragarbha-[samti^/zz], and then by means of empowering
    these mudras at the four sites of the body, i.e. heart, crown (urna), throat, and
    forehead (with the mudras of the four Paramitas).

    The consecration of all the families is accomplished by means of (a) binding the
    mudra of Ratnavajri and placing this mudra on the forehead, (b) binding the mudra
    of Vajradhatvlsvari and meditating on Vairocana on the crown; binding the mudra
    of Sattvavajri and meditating on Aksobhya on the forehead; binding the mudra of
    Ratnavajri and meditating on Ratnasambhava in the right ear; binding the mudra of
    Dharmavajri and meditating on Amitabha at the back of the head; binding the
    mudra of Karmavajri and meditating on Amoghasiddhi in the left ear, (c) binding
    Vajrabhisekamala and placing it on the forehead, (d) binding Dharmavajri and
    placing it on the head, (e) binding Vajraratnankura and placing it on the forehead...

    Ch. Twenty-four Guhyatantra on p. 288 refers to attainments from the Dharanimandala. This starts with Sattvavajri but also uses Vajrahumkara. This uses images rather than symbols.

    It says that the Dharanimandala is effective for the Five Tathagatas and Tathagata Family, and other Families in different mandalas. This sounds close to the main reason we would look into a "this or similar" fusion. Because "this" is a whole chapter which is relatively large, I will do that separately. Some of the Families sound like they echo Paramadya:

    Thus, the sadhaka visualises himself as one of the five Tathagatas,
    particularly Alcsobhya, who is worshipped with the four offerings, i.e. wantonness
    (Lasya), garland, song and dance by the four Mahabodhisattvas, i.e. Vajrasattva
    assuming the bodily form of Vajralasya, Vajraraja assuming tire bodily form of
    Vajramala, Vajraraga assuming the bodily form of Vajraglta, and Vajrasadhu
    assuming the bodily form of Vajranrtya respectively. Sakyamitra explains that
    segment (a) involves making the thought of enlightenment steadfast, segment (b)
    involves making it manifest, segment (c) involves making it thoroughly cleansed,
    and segment (d) involves making living beings mature but without leaving the
    wheel of transmigration altogether.

    Which is an example in Chapter Four, Karmamandala, which has the Sixteen Mahabodhisattvas converted to females, arranging them in four rounds similar to the above, and is a practice of Sixteen Offerings. Krodhaguhya of Chapter Seven extends this to Sixteen Dance Offerings.

    When we switch gears and port this to Dakini Jala, it is about the same Heruka Yoga with an added retinue in the sense that:

    The Gauris are the closest thing to Vajra Heruka. This Heruka brings his original mantra from STTS that was used to draw in the Hindu mother goddesses and adds a seed syllable:


    compared to STTS:

    oṃ herūka vajra samaya sarvaduṣṭa samaya mudrā prabhaṃjaka huṃ phaṭ // sarvamātṝṇāmiti //

    How did he get that, what is he doing with a syllable that should belong to Lotus Family?

    I am not sure, but, the vow that subjugates Yakshas, etc., is sometimes called the Vow of Lotus Family.

    Dakini Jala is looking for something like a Five Buddha Crown, Trailokyavijaya, and a relation to Hrih, in order to confront the Gauris. In this case again, they are not really Yidams, they are parts of one's being since beginingless time.

    In STTS, I do not see a motion/transfer/repositioning of Sattvavajri like happens with "rotation of yoginis" in GST. She is prominent/first/primordial. We can see in other tantras there seems to be an interchange with a more "typical" family name, Vajravajrini:

    Sarvadurgati involves Vajrasattva and Sattvavajri, and places Vajradhatvishvari at the center of Vajravajrini and the rest. It seems to refer to Gagana-ganja-samadhi to produce the mandala. At the end, it classifies Seven Jewels of Enlightenment, the Dhyanas, and describes the Pratisamvits as absolute. So it seems to have a process or transfer between Vajravajrini and Sattvavajrini.

    Vilasavajra characterizes Sattvavajri as the pledge-being of all Tathagatas and relates her to Mirror Wisdom. In another page showing chapters 1-5, her class is described as Janas [Dhyanas] followed by the eight consciousnesses or Asta Vijnana.

    It turns out there is also a Wayman publication of Sarva Rahasya Tantra which involves her. But this is more advanced and seems to place deities to produce Abhisambodhis:

    Any showing of the navel refers to Vajradhatvisvari (rdo rje dbyins dban phyug bsad) Any showing of the 'heart (=chest) implies (the goddess) Sattvavajri. Any showing of the brows is Ratnavajri. Any showing of the throat is Dharmavajri. Any showing of crown of "head should be taken as Karmavajri. "showing of the navel ......": touching the navel, etc. are the five goddesses; these are corporeal signs. Whether it be the one enlightened sooner in the five enlightenments, or the five wisdoms, or the five Buddhas, attended with them is the mandala-enlightenment. "in the five enlightenments": the verse shows verbal signs (gsun gi brda'). [Apparently the mantras recited in connection with the five enlightenments (abhi sambodhi); see verse 17, 43, 44, above.]

    That sounds like a slightly different classification since it appears to have "moved" Vajradhatvishvari, then it may have to do with the upper winds being "pulled down" to "handshake" with the lower winds as in Vase Breathing.

    A Sanskrit Dakini Jala exists in France, but, does not seem to be published yet. According to Rigpa Wiki, it was not translated into Chinese, was suppressed in Tibet, and has two sadhanas in Sadhanamala, and one by Anadagarbha, which is the Vajrajvalodaya.

    Vajra Humkara was a yogi who lived in Sitavana charnel ground and empowered Padmasambhava with Vajrasattva. The article gives clear Sanskrit names for the Vidyadharas of this group and that Vajramrita was considered Wrathful Samantabhadra. Vajra Humkara around p. 143 of the main STTS study appears to be the central figure of "external Vajra Family", the converted Hindu deities.

    At face value, tantras such as STTS portray most of the initiations as done by a guru to a disciple. You cast a flower while blindfolded to determine a mantra devata, then the blindfold is removed so you see/enter the mandala, and then you take a Vajra Name initiation. But this is still using the base model of the Abhisambodhi sequence. And so it represents Buddha's Enlightenment, but here is a point where there are two teachings and I don't think I have any way to say what is right about it. Buddha was born already having attained the state of Vajradhara. In his material life he was trained in a Ganapati Agni Vaisvanara system, and then he self-trained by roaming ascetically. Then when the Tathagatas got his attention and it was said mastery of these does not make Complete Manifest Buddha from Vajradhara, then he switched to the Abhisambodhi process. Because he already was equal to Vajradhara, some believe he already had this name and so Vajra Name Initiation was merely formal to him. Others believe that although he "was" this, it had never been sealed in the presence of Tathagatas, and so he received a new Name Initiation, or for the first time.

    According to Genesis and Development, STTS is the first place where Avesa is explicitly taught.

    The immediate effects of the possession are described as follows:

    As soon as he becomes possessed supernatural knowledge arises [in him].
    Through this knowledge he understands the thoughts of others; he knows all
    matters past, future and present; his heart becomes firm in the teachings of
    the Tathagatas; all his sufferings cease; he is free from all dangers; no being ¯
    can kill him; all the Tathagatas enter-and-empower him; all Siddhis approach ¯
    him; unprecedented joys arise [in him], causing spontaneous delight, pleasure,
    and happiness. In some these joys give rise to meditation-states, in some to [the
    mastery of] Dharanis, in some to the fulfilment of every hope, and in some to the
    state of identity with all the Tathagatas.

    and, after the bindfold has been removed:

    As soon as he sees the Great Mandala he is entered-and-empowered by all the
    Tathagatas and Vajrasattva dwells in his heart. He sees various visions of
    orbs of light and miraculous transformations. Because he has been entered and empowered by all the Tathagatas sometimes the Lord Vajradhara or the Buddha appears to him in his true form. From that time forth he attains all his
    goals, every desire of his mind, all Siddhis, up to the state of Vajradhara or the

    Then when the Acarya has ascertained that [the candidate] is possessed he should
    form the Samayamudra of Vajrasattva and address him with [the Mantras] HE
    possessed he will adopt the Vajrasattvamudra. Then the Acarya should show the
    Mudra of the Vajra Fist. By this means all the deities beginning with Vajrasattva
    make themselves present [in him].

    At that point they might use you for an oracle, or, it has at least five post-initiatory applications elsewhere in STTS. However it does not always work:

    If possession does not occur even so, then he must not give him the consecration. [the scented water used prior to Vajra Name Initiation]

    If you did not see anything captivating by removing the blindfold, you did not get this initiation.

    In simple terms, Avesa is the Fourth Activity, and here most of us would probably agree that the conceptual practice version is not quite to the full-blown scale of STTS. However, it can be. If one gets Vajrasattva and works towards a Quintessence, it can be similar. STTS is trying to reveal Luminous Mind which is Smrti which is going to trigger the finish on Six Yogas or the Abhisambodhis, or both if you conjoin them properly.

    The system, so to speak, only cares about your Merit and Skill. STTS was pretty non-discriminatory as to who could try:

    Thus the text offered Mandala initiation not only to Buddhists, and in particular to those who had found themselves unable to progress on the exacting path of the Paramitanaya, but also to sinners and sensualists regardless of their
    religion, and, most important in the present context, to outsiders who had already taken a non-Buddhist Tantric initiation or might otherwise be expected do so.

    Anandagarbha took the unusual position that there were sensual elements in Vaisnava tantras because they consistently use the term Bhagavan, which he interpreted as the same as the opening of Guhyasamaja when Buddha is residing in the bhagas of the vajra ladies, based on something in Vishnu's texts where it says so. Most of us think it sounds more Saivite:

    ...and of the Picumata in particular, 544

    544 See, e.g., Picumata f. 280v4: 67.71
    ‘He should insert his penis into the vagina of his consort and then begin the worship, intent on
    bringing his consort to orgasm through to-and-fro motion’;

    which is in the Fourth Mudra or Karma Mudra. The use of this in practice has to do with the quality of one's Avesa. If you are one of the rare people like Tson kha pa who can quickly and naturally do it, then you just move on to the visual process or Jnana Mudra. It is like a new circle with Karma Mudra at the beginning rather than end. Because most people have difficulty, he suggests doing an actual Karma Mudra, although it is not required. Such a pivot from "old fourth to new first" sounds a bit like Lasya as well.

    So there appears to be a pattern of working into this fourth condition and when it is good you get a Name and it becomes a platform to something else. If you are sincere, it may be a natural process that does not involve us kneeling in a monastery before a teacher all the time. Although this is progress of Vajrasattva or the sixth principle, "Fivefold Form" including Akasha or Space is a type of entity or substance; it may look like we are trying to "outrank" it by using additional Families, when really we are trying to "concentrate" it such as in Five Nectar Offering. And so the STTS is showing us a very malleable Quintessence. For comparison, Pancha Raksa is a basic Quintessence which allows anyone to be the main central deity. And any one of them can also go off to their own individual practice. But they do not start a new rite with additional members and a new twist.

    That is just one kind of Tara. If I look at Mahasri Tara, she has Marici, Ekajati, Janguli, and Mayuri, and then I can say...Pancha Raksa is an additional rite for Mayuri, and the others have theirs. In Nepal it is not unusual to normally think of Mayuri as the Pancha Raksa leader. And so Tara does have a similar way of making a Quintessence of Quintessences to STTS but less structured for those of us who are not that involved with a formal system.

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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    STTS Chapter Twenty-four and Vajrasekhara

    This translation is really more like a summary of the chapter's contents. This is how it describes the Dharanimandala or goddess equivalent of Vajradhatu when they appear in forms.

    The Vajraskhara part at the end of the study is like a summary of the whole STTS fused into the whole Vajrasekhara. That does give it an overall shape or structure which is like placing the whole Ngondro or Preliminaries beside one of the compendiums of Completion Stage Tantras. However it is not quite that advanced. When this was distributed in the orient, I am not sure they realized the significance of the Six Yogas that must have been tucked in at least by implication. When I read it, I kind of think they have it backwards. The Six Yogas should be more of a main stamp having Abhisambodhis within it.

    The Six Yogas teaching is bundled with Utpatti and Nispanna or Generation and Completion Stages which are perhaps the only two siddhis, Transcendent or Lokottara Siddhis, we can say are of Buddhist origin or are the major part of Buddhist Suksma Yoga as distinguished from similar Hindu tantras, with which are shared the same Laukika or worldly siddhis which are mundane powers such as invisibility or rapid travel, similar to astral projection.

    This is just a summary of one mandala, and Vajrasekhara has something probably like 108 of these. So we are just getting a bird's eye view. Just the summary looks like a program telling you to grab sub-routines from other parts of the tantra.

    The STTS practice must have been new and unique on at least three accounts, since it teaches Enlightenment consists of Abhisambodhis, it describes the subjugation of Maheshvara, and it goes into Possession or Avesa. And so we are looking for some of the mechanics and patterns because what we have will be more like a "Mark II" version which doesn't take the....I have no idea what it would take to go through all of the intracacies put into play here.

    This part does have Sattvavajri "prominently featured" as do most other parts.

    Chapter 24. Guhyatantra

    Chapter 24 of the STTS concerns the method of gaining supreme attainments by
    means of the uttara-tantra of the dharani-mandalas as described in Vajraguhya
    Vajramandala (ch. 2) for the five Tathagatas and the Tathagata-family, Krodhaguhya Mudramandala (ch. 7) for the Vara-family, Padmaguhya Mudramandala (ch. 16) for the Padma-family and Ratnaguhya Mudramandala (ch. 20) for the
    Mani- or Ratna-family. In order to understand this chapter, it is necessary to bear in
    mind that all the deities generated from the dharani-mandalas have female forms,
    and the term secret {guhya) used in this chapter refers to the female deities as
    described in the dharani-mandalas.

    (1) The first section of chapter 24 of the STTS starting with the words, “Then,
    the Mahabodhisattva Vajrapani” and ending with the words, “As soon as one
    enters, one will cause to dance”, describes the means of attaining the nature of the
    four mudras of all the families explained in the dharani-mandalas. Firstly, the
    nature of the maha-mudras of all the families explained in the dharani-mandalas is
    accomplished by means of (a) entering the Buddhabodhi-samadhi with a well-concentrated mind and meditating on the essence of all the Tathagatas, (b) binding
    (or meditating on) the (maha-) mudra of Sattvavajri in the heart while thinking:
    “You are my beloved consort.”, 76 and accomplishing all the mudras (referring to
    the perfect union with the female deity) while uttering: “DRDHI BHAVA” (Become
    steadfast!), or otherwise “GUHYA BHARYAM’ (Secret consort!), (c) killing by
    means of Vajrahumkara generated from the wrath through binding the mudra of
    Vajrahumkara, (d) binding the samadhi-mudra (referring to visualising the bodily
    image of the female deity explained in the dharani-mandala of the Padma-family)
    and beholding the female deity with the vajra-vision (vajra-drsti), (e) practising
    the samapatti of uniting the two organs (of the deity and his consort) while uttering
    “Best Pleasure!”, and offering the organ to all the Tathagatas.

    Secondly, the nature of the samaya-mudras of all the families explained in the
    dharani-mandalas is accomplished by means of (a) reciting: “SAMAYAS TVAM’
    (at the time of forming the samaya-mudras) and gratifying all the female deities
    (referring to the five Tathagatas having female images, i.e. Vajradhatvisvari and the
    others), (b) gratifying all the female deities without despising the passion
    (symbolising the thought of enlightenment) and keeping this secret pledge of

    76. According to Anandagarbha, “consort” in this context symbolises the nature of gathering the
    thought of enlightenment (bodhi-citta), and “my consort” means generating this bodhi-citta
    in oneself. (Tattvaloka, TTP. Vol. 72, No. 3333, p. 105-2-7—8).

    Vajradhara (which means making firm the thought of enlightenment), (c)
    destroying the whole world (referring to the female deities) with the body, speech
    and mind (vajras) of Vajrahumkara or the deity for purification, (d) keeping the
    pledge endowed with purity (i.e. performing the yoga of the female deity explained
    in the dharanimandala of the Padma-family) because the passion endowed with
    purity is pure but non-initiates' yogas are impure, (e) binding Vajramani in the
    samadhi of Vajragarbha and taking away the treasures of evil beings.

    Thirdly, the nature of the dharma-mudras of all the families explained in the
    dharanl-mandalas is accomplished by means of (a) conceiving of all the dharmas
    as pure by nature with a well-concentrated mind, and performing all rituals, (b)
    (performing the yoga of the female deity while perceiving) that gratifying the female
    deity is pure, (c) killing all evil beings (by breathing out the subtle-vajra) from the
    nose while reciting the syllable 'HUM and abiding in the samadhi of the subtle vajra (suksma-vajra), (d) gratifying all the female (deities) by meditating on the subtle-vajra, and abiding in the samadhi of Vajradharma, (e) fulfilling all the
    wishes by practising the samapatti of uniting the two organs (between the deity and
    his consort).

    Finally, the nature of the karma-mudras of all the families explained in the
    dharani-mandalas is accomplished by means of entering and possessing the body
    of the sadhaka's chosen female deity through the female sexual organ by the male
    deity generated from the samadhis, i.e. (a) abiding in Vajrasattva-samaya, (b)
    abiding in Vajrasattva-samadhi, (c) binding the mudra of Vajrahumkara (i.e.
    performing the wrathful deity-yoga), (d) binding the karma-mudra of the Padma family and abiding in Padma-samadhi, (e) binding Karmavajramani (i.e. forming a gem with both middle fingers and stretching out the other fingers) and abiding in
    Vajmmtna-samadhi. According to Anandagarbha, meditation upon the four mudras
    explained in the dharani-mandala of all the families is achieved in the uttara-tantra
    (by the sadhaka) through generating deity-yoga by means of the four mudras
    explained in the maha-mandala of his family, and then by binding the maha-mudra
    and the others explained in the dharani-mandala.

    (2) The next section starting with the words, “Then, the Mahabodhisattva
    Vajrapani” and ending with the words, “The Lord Vajrasattva said thus”,
    describes the secret attainment of the purity of the mandalas of all the families
    explained in the dharani-mandalas, i.e. by means of entering the mandalas
    constructed in conformity with (a) Dharma-wheel {dharma-cakra), where the
    Buddha is encircled by (the symbols of his four) Symbol-consorts, (b) {dharani-mandala of) Vajradhatu, (c) {dharani-mandala of Trilokavijaya, (d) {dharani-mandala of) Sakalajagadvinaya, (e) {dharani-mandala
    of) Sarvarthasiddhi, and then, uttering: (a) “These consorts are yours, O Lord.
    Grant me all!”, (b) “Beloved, you are the Pledge, HOHl Vajrasattva, grant me
    success now!”, (c) “You have your origin in passion!”, (d) “O Great Lotus of
    the Law of Passion! Give me rapid success, O Lord!”, (e) “O Supreme Perfection
    of the Expectations of Passion amongst all proposed perfections! O Lord, Great
    Being, grant success, grant success in all perfections!”. In the light of the
    commentary by Anandagarbha, the centres of the mandalas are occupied by the
    female images of the representative deities of the families, i.e. Vairocana,
    Vajrasattva, Vajrahumkara, Jagadvinaya and Sarvarthasiddhi while the other places
    of the mandalas contain the symbols described in the dharani-mandalas, though
    these representative deities occupying the centres can be replaced by the sadhaka's
    chosen deities. 92

    (3) The next section starting with the words, “Then” and ending with the
    words, “The Lord Akasagarbha said thus”, describes the secret attainment of all
    the mudras of all the families explained in the dharani-mandalas by means of the
    exhortation of truth {tattva-codana), i.e. by means of visualising and exhorting the
    female deities explained in the dharani-mandalas, (a) exhorting the beloved great
    goddesses of the Tathagatas (i,e. the four Paramitas) who give utter bliss to all the
    five Tathagatas, (b) visualising Vajrasattva and uniting the chosen deity with the
    visualised female deity while uttering: “I myself am Vajrasattva and you are the

    92. According to Anandagarbha, the bodily images (maha-mudra) of the representative deities ate
    drawn in conformity with the descriptions of the maha-mandalas while reciting their
    dharani-vidyas. According to this interpretation, therefore, the bodily images of the
    representative deities are female. (Tattvalolca, TTP. Vol. 72, No. 3333, pp. 109-2-l~l 12-1-7).

    consort abiding in my mind!”, (c), (d), (e), in common, visualising the deity and
    uniting with the visualised consort, while exhorting (the consort): (c) “Accomplish!
    Accomplish now in the Pledge! I am the Pledge and you are my lover!”, (d)
    “Wake up! Wake up! Great Being! You are my beloved consort!”, (e) “Performer
    of all actions! You are my consort! Accomplish now! Vajra-holder!”.

    (4) The next section starting with the words, “Then, the Mahabodhisattva
    Vajrapani” and ending with the words, “The Lord Ajnakara said thus”,
    describes the secret attainment of the pledges of all the families explained in the
    dharani-mandalas, when, according to Anandagarbha, at the time of (the
    sadhaka's female deities) approaching in front, the sadhaka generates and meditates
    on the dharani-mudras through perceiving the following secret knowledges, i.e. (a)
    perceiving that the Buddha's consorts are concealed by means of drawing the
    mudras for the benefit of the non-initiates, (b) perceiving that (the pledge of the
    Tathagata-family) penetrating the thought of all sentient beings (i.e. the nature of the
    beginningless and endless Dharmadhatu) and giving bliss to all sentient beings, is
    the father of all sentient beings and the highest desire of the supreme pledges, (c)
    perceiving that the supreme pledge (of the Vajra-family) kills the non-initiates who
    are averse to the purity of passion or believe in the existence of self, (d) perceiving
    that all (i.e. the three worlds) generated from the gross element (mahabhuta) is not
    impure, (e) perceiving that the female deity (of the Mani-family) is the supreme gem
    because one can gather gems (i.e. realising the nature of the Mani-family) from
    uniting with the female deity.

    (5) The next section starting with the words, “Then” and ending with the
    words, “The Lord Vajraratna said thus”, describes the secret attainment of the
    offerings of all the families explained in the dharani-mandalas by means of
    meditating on the male deities, such as (a) a Tathagata encircled by the female
    deities, (b) Vajrasattva, (c) Vajrahumkara, (d) Lokesvara, (e) Vajragarbha, and
    offering these male deities the bliss generated from the union with the female deities
    explained in the dharani-mandalas.

    (6) The next section starting with the words, “Then” and ending with the
    words, “The Lord Vajragarbha said thus”, describes the attainment of the secret
    offerings of all the families explained in the dharani-mandalas by means of
    visualising the male deities, such as (a) a Tathagata, (b) Vajrasattva, (c)
    Vajrahumkara, (d) Lokesvara, (e) Vajragarbha, and worshipping these deities with
    the four Secret Offerings, i.e. Lasya, Mala, Gita and Nrtya, explained in the

    (7) The next section starting with the words, “Then” and ending with the
    words, “The Lord Sarvatathagatacakra said thus”, describes the secret attainment
    of unveiling the essence of all the families. Anandagarbha explains that the essence
    of both the Tathagatas and the families signifies the essence of all the Tathagatas,
    which is attained by means of generating the bodily images of all the deities
    described in the maha-mandalas. According to this section, the Buddha-essence
    arising from the knowledge of samadhi (i.e. five abhisambodhis) is attained by
    means of gratifying the sattvas (i.e. by means of the thought of converting all
    sentient beings while making the karma-mudra of a Tathagata and visualising the
    bodily image of the Tathagata).

    (8) The next section starting with the words, “Then” and ending with the
    words, “The Lord Sarvatathagatacihna said thus”, describes the secret attainment
    of manifesting the symbols or signs of all the families, which is the method of
    attaining the deity by means of the meditation on the deity's symbol. This section
    explains the attributes of only die main sixteen Mahabodhisattvas' symbols of the
    Tathagata-family described in the Vajraguhya Vajramandala (ch. 2), because the
    characteristics of the corresponding symbols of the other three families are basically
    the same as those of the Tathagata-family, though being different in that the
    symbols of the Vajra-family are drawn in the centres of flames, whereas those of
    the Padma-family are signified by the lotus {padma), and those of the Mani- or
    Ratna-family are signified by the jewel (mani) or gem (ratna).

    (9) The next section starting with the words, “Then” and ending with the
    words, “The Lord Vajra said thus”, describes the secret attainment of
    generating the mudra-bonds of all the families. According to this section, the
    method of generating the mudra-bonds of the five Tathagatas is to sit in the vajra-posture of meditation, form the vajra-bond, and abide in Vajrasattva-samadhi.

    (10) The final section starting with the words, “Then” and ending with the
    words, “the compendium of the Mahayana”, constitutes the closing section of
    chapter 24, which includes a verse praising Vajrapani by all the Tathagatas.

    STTS gives the dual meaning for Karma Mudra early, in its third mandala:

    The section of the knowledge of the Vajrajnana Dharmamandala is
    devoted to the various skills exercised in meditation. According to Amoghavajra,
    this section explains the suksma-vajra-samadhi of the sadhaka in practising the
    four dhyanas, four brahma-viharas (perfect-states) and three vimoksa-mukhas
    (emancipation-entrances). As a result of these practices in meditation, the mind
    endures, the mind becomes gently harmonious, and the mind is liberated.

    Regarding the Sanskrit term vajra-suksma (or suksma-vajra), Anandagarbha
    interprets that the vajrasuksma (vajra-subtle) as a white coloured five-pronged vajra as small as a barleycorn, its inner essence being knowledge (jnana) and truth, generates the mudra. Thus, the nature of the vajra-suksma is the mudra of the
    knowledge of the vajra-suksma. Sakyamitra adds that the vajra-suksma of all the
    Tathagatas is the knowledge-vajra, and since it is generated from the mind which is
    not able to be seen, nobody can break it, so it is called the vajrasuksma. As for
    the reason each deity is drawn in the centre of a vajra, Toganoo Shoun makes the
    following comment: “The vajra-subtle-knowledge can become unlimited and
    innumerable in division but as a whole it is called Pure-Absolute-Knowledge. This
    Pure-Absolute-Knowledge of Vairocana, known as a vajra of (Bodhi-) Sattva in
    the STTS, symbolised as the five-pronged-vajra established inside the lunar-disc,
    personified as the Mahabodhisattva Vajrapani, is divided into countless and
    immeasurable Buddha-knowledges, which are represented as the thirty-seven
    knowledges and personified as the thirty-seven deities in the mandala. Thus, since
    these thirty-seven deities are manifested in the ambience of the subtle-vajra to be the
    Pure-Absolute-Knowledge, each of them is drawn in the centre of a vajra.

    According to the Mahaprajnaparamitasastra, apart from the seven groups of the
    bodhipaksikas, there are eight groups of dharmas which the bodhisattva practises,
    i.e. (1) the three vimoksamukhas or three samadhis (2) the four dhyanas, (3) the
    four brahmaviharas or four apramanas (4) the four arupyasamapattis (5) the
    eight vimoksas (6) the eight abhibhvayatanas (7) the nine anupurvasamapattis (8)
    the ten Indriyayatanas. Out of these eight classes, this section of the STTS (S. pp.
    123~126) explains the four dhyanas, four brahmaviharas, four arupyasamapattis
    and three vimoksamukhas respectively from the point of view of the yoga-tantra,
    where a subtle-vajra is used as the object of meditation.

    Accordingly, the first dhyana constituting a state of great joy is achieved by concentrating on a
    subtle-vajra at the tip of the nose, which signifies reflection and discernment; the
    second dhyana constituting a subtle joy is achieved by diffusing the subtle-vajra,
    which signifies making the thought arrive at one point without reflection and
    discernment; the third dhyana constituting a complete happiness is achieved by
    contracting the subtle-vajra, which signifies the abandonment of joy; and the fourth
    dhyana constituting a pure equanimity is achieved by making steadfast the subtlevajra, which signifies equanimity and mindfulness.

    In each Family's Karmamandala, there is also a Rahasya Mudra or sexual rite.

    Since the STTS is classified as a yoga-tantra, it is dominated by mental states and
    meditative practices. Nevertheless, it also explains certain secret rituals containing
    some basic elements of the anuttara-yoga-tantra. All such rituals contain the
    Sanskrit term rahasya or guhya, both of which mean ‘secret or esoteric teaching’.
    However, it is significant that in the yoga-tantra, all the secret rituals are performed
    in samadhi. The STTS describes the secret mudra-knowledge of the truth of all the
    Tathagatas (sarvatathagata-dharmata-rahasya-mudra-jnana) in the following

    “Uttering once with the vajra-sound: ‘Indeed, I am identical to the
    Tathagata.’, one can gratify all living beings through the union
    of the two organs (indriya).
    Uttering once with the vajra-sound: ‘Indeed, I am identical to
    Mahavajra.’, one can, with confidence, attract the world through
    the union of the two organs.
    Uttering once with the vajra-sound: ‘Indeed, I am identical to
    Vajradharma.’, one can destroy the whole world through the union
    of the two organs.
    Uttering once with the vajra-sound: ‘Indeed, I am identical to
    ViSvavajra.’, one can accomplish all actions through the union of
    the two organs.”

    This rite is performed through four consecutive verbal utterances, which aim to
    identify, in sequence, with each of the four families, i.e. Tathagata, Vajra, Dharma
    and Karma, based upon the four rites, i.e. subjugation, attraction, destruction and
    pacification. In addition to the verbal utterances, the union of the two organs are
    introduced in this ritual. In this context, the union of the two organs refers to the
    union between the mentally projected body of the sadhaka and the body of the deity
    joined together in samadhi, which symbolises the perfect unity equivalent to the
    physical union between male and female.

    Outline of the Eighteen Assemblies of the Vajrasekhara Sutra Yoga according to Amoghavajra

    This is intriguing since I did not really know what this I suppose more famous system, but I can see through it. That is because it is a really difficult mirror of pretty much the same type of outer Yoga system I have been working on. A lot of this is "some stuff", but, three of the Assemblies refer to complete tantras. The first one is STTS, which is unpacked in significant detail. Most of the rest of the Assemblies run fairly close to its pattern. And then we are going to get a small version of Dakini Jala which is accurate although it is believed he censored it. Then towards the end is a small Guhyasamaja which he probably also censored. And then the very end is Vajrasattva teaching Vajra Muttering which is Pranayama or the Third Yoga.

    Same target for the most part.

    This system is eighty percent dependent on male Bodhisattvas which ends with an Usnisa or Vajrosnisa mixed with Lotus Family therefor becoming fiery, and i. e. Sekhara = crest, or top of head, so it has to do with Fiery Crown, and we can do this much more easily on a dharani basis where this role is easily engulfed by Sitatapatra Parasol. It would be lacking all the intricate hand gestures. It may be useful to learn some, but, we do not need that much to do an outer Tara to inner Vajrayogini "at your own pace" and mostly from an armchair which will accomplish the same Vajrosnisa behind this. We perhaps are dealing more with a controlled evolution of sound to begin with.

    The first Assembly is called Sarva-tathagata-tattva-samgraha-kalpa-raja and consists of the four main headings of STTS:


    The first Vajradhatu section makes a pattern of six mandalas also used by the other Assemblies:

    Vajradhatu Maha Mandala
    Dharanimandala, entering the mandala by Four Activities
    Suksma Vajra Mandala, which helps in practising the four dhyanas, the four-perfect-states (brahma-viharas) and the three emancipation-entrances (vimoksa-mukhas)
    Karmamandala, for Entering the Mandala by Sixteen Offerings and Four Secret Offerings
    Four Mudra Mandala like a combination of the previous four
    One Mudra Mandala, which can use Vajrasattva to summon thirteen deities, or Vairocana to summon seventeen, until summoning Sva Deva, meaning Yidam or Ista Devata

    It already has a pattern. We don't have Sva Deva to summon. We are more in the position of putting Vajrasattva at the foot of this thing and how in the world we could compress all that into One Mudra that works like a Hook and who or what are we doing this to.

    The second section Trailokya Vijaya uses six mandalas but has more detail:

    When Buddha attained Enlightenment, he set in motion the Vajradhatu, which was able to transfer titles to what were now Bodhisattvas. The normal Santikara, Pacifying, or Hook rite did not work on Mahesvara and his kind, so Vajrapani manifested as Karuna Krodha Vajra Samadhi, destroyed them, and attained Complete Enlightenment as Fear Lord or Bhaya Isvara. Vajradhara revived Mahesvara with a mantra and he and they were converted. Of he and his followers are said to be five kinds:

    Mahesvara's class lives in the upper spheres of form and non-form.
    Surya's class "wander in space"
    Mara's class lives in Space
    Kosapala's class lives on Earth
    Varaha's class lives below the Earth

    These became the Outer Vajra Family.

    Its six mandalas are:

    The first or Maha Mandala Vidhi is about Destruction and Siddhi
    Guhya Mandala uses sounds, song, and dance
    Dharmamandala is Destruction with Compassion and Generosity by controlling the mind with the Suksma Vajra
    Karmamandala teaches the Homa rite
    Four Mudra Mandala combines the previous four to experience all "sensual enjoyments" which may have meant the Four Joys.
    One Mudra Mandala is "preliminary activities"

    Vajrapani then explains four more mandalas which is unique to this Family, all the others only have six.

    For their sake, the Buddha (as Vajrapani) explains the maha-mandala (of the Trilokacakra) by the
    (first) command {ajna) (of Vairocana). It contains thirty-seven deities. (This section
    of the tantra) explains the rite of guiding the pupil to enter (the mandala). For the
    benefit of the pupil, the text explains the rites of employing the external-Vajra family. In this, it explains the mantras and mudras of both the great Buddha-crown
    {usnisa) and the glory-assembled-Buddha-crown {tejorasi), which can be
    understood as the method of reciting a monosyllabic word-crown-wheel.

    Samayamandala is mantras from goddesses, which cultivates Yaksha and Yakshi
    Dharmamandala is a type of vow
    Karmamandala explains all their dances and accomplishments

    Next major section:

    Sakalajagadvinaya Mahamandala contains transformations of Avalokiteshvara. It has sixteen samadhis for Abhijna or powers of an Arhat.
    Samayamandala is sixteen samadhis of Akarsana and Vasikarana.
    Dharmamandala cultivates wisdom and eloquence.
    Karmamandala worships Lotus Family and prevents afflictions.
    Four Mudra Mandala is again like a combination.
    One Mudra Mandala also explains summoning Sva Deva and perceiving Loka and Aloka or the world and the spiritual world.

    Last section:

    Sarvarthasiddhi uses six mandalas.

    Mahamandala eliminates poverty and spreads dharmic glory.
    Guhyasamayamandala seeks the Nidhana treasure trove, and accumulates Merit or Punya for Dana Paramita.
    Dharmamandala is a samadhi of Jewel Family as Akasagarbha or Vajragarbha.
    Karmamandala uses empowerment or Adhisthana for digging for treasure.
    Four Mudra Mandala is again like a combination.
    One Mudra Mandala cultivates a single deity and all the Yakshas, who are transformations of Vajradhara Akasagarbha.

    That is the explanation of the First Assembly.

    Those are the Four Wisdoms. This system does not refer to a Fifth Wisdom which will be called Dharmadhatu Wisdom. And so it looks like it has lumped Jewel and Karma Family together at the end in Sarvarthasiddhi. In further tantras, Vajragarbha will become associated with a mantra wheel, whereas Akasa is Kha syllable which will belong to Amoghasiddhi. But is is valid enough to have the families fused in the sense of both related to the Yaksha Kingdom.

    The Second Assembly is called sarva-tathagata-guhya-adhipati-yoga and was explained in Akanistha. It has four main parts which explain the subtle body and subjugation of Maheshvara.

    The Third Assembly is called sarvapravacana-samudaya-yoga, and was explained in Dharmadhatu Palace. It uses Five Families and Five Mandalas in a similar pattern as before.

    The Fourth Assembly is called triloka-vijaya-vajra-yoga and was explained on Mount Sumeru. Each of the Eight Mahabodhisattvas gives their version of the same four mandala pattern.

    The Fifth Assembly is called loka-aloka-vajra-yoga, which was explained in the Space-sphere of Varanasi. Five Buddhas, all the Bodhisattvas, and Outer Vajra Family, present mandalas.

    The Sixth Assembly is called maha-sukha-amogha-samaya-tattva-yoga, and was explained in the Sixth Heaven. It begins with Samantabhadra, and the Bodhisattvas teach Prajna or Prajnaparamita.

    The Seventh Assembly is called Yoga of Samantabhadra and was explained in his palace. It explains that for the practitioner, there is no special time or place, and without depending on the prohibitions of the mundane
    world, he should give priority to Buddhahood (bodhi-citta) and should depend on
    the non-prohibition.

    The Eighth Assembly is similar to the previous and deals with the "principle of reality".

    The Ninth Assembly is called sarva-buddha-sangraha-dakini-sila-jala-yoga, and it was explained in the Palace of Mantra. (The text) explains that one should regard the body as the deity for yoga. It blames the yogis who seek the image beyond the body. (The text) extensively explains the principle of reality and the origin of the Five-families, and the method of yoga, which contains the nine moods, namely, brilliance, bravery, mercy, laughter, wrath, fear, abhorrence, admiration and tranquillity.

    According to the footnote of the text, the above nine moods correspond to the nine deities, i.e.
    Vajrasattva, Vairocana, Vajradhara, Avalokitesvara, Vajrateja (alias Vajraprabha),
    Trilokavijaya, Sakyamuni Buddha, Vajrahasa and Vairocana in yoga respectively.

    It has a song and dance for each family.

    The Tenth Assembly is Maha Samaya Yoga, which was explained in the Palace of Dharmadhatu, using Samantabhadra and Sixteen Bodhisattvas.

    The Eleventh Assembly is called mahayana-abhisamaya-yoga and was explained in Akanistha. The deities generate tattva-samgraha-yoga, each one of them containing four mandalas and four mudras.

    The Twelfth Assembly is Supreme Yoga of Samaya, explained on the Bodhi Manda of the Space Sphere. It makes a Body Mandala and teaches about the syllable "A".

    The Thirteenth Assembly is called maha-samayatattva-yoga, explained on the mandala seat of Vajradhatu. It is a very detailed teaching from Vajrasattva.

    The Fourteenth Assembly is called Truth Yoga of Tathagata Samaya. It shows a convergence of Bodhisattvas into one body. (The text) extensively explains that the five families, having united mutually as the Tathagata-family becomes the Vajra-(family) and the Lotus family becomes the Jewel-family, and then having entered each other, Dharmadhatu becomes the Real (tathata) and Wisdom (prajna) becomes the Truth. The phenomenal world is characterised by difference, but there is no difference in
    its nature.

    The Fifteenth Assembly is called (guhya-samajayoga). It was explained in the Secret-place, so called, ‘the place of the female organ (bhaga) of the yoga’; It is named as the Palace of Prajnaparamita. (The text) explains the throne of teaching the doctrine (i.e. mandala), mudra and mantra.

    The Sixteenth Assembly is called advaya-samatayoga, which was explained in the Palace of Dharmadhatu. In this, (the text) explains that transmigration (samsara) and cessation (nirvana), mundane world (loka) and supramundane world (aloka), the one and the other, are same without duality. Therefore, when one thinks and perceives, though the distorted consciousnesses of
    sound, smell, taste, and sense, scatter the mind, if one knows that all of them are the same as the real Dharmadhatu without duality, one can attain the complete Buddhabody.

    The Seventeenth Assembly is called Yoga of Like Space. It was explained in the Palace of Reality. It is a union of dharma body and the samadhi of Space.

    The Eighteenth Assembly is called vajra-ratnakuta-yoga, and was explained in the Heaven of the Fourth Dhyana. "Kuta" is translated as "diadem", and is also like Sekhara, "peak or sumit". Vajrasattva teaches Manasa Japa or mental recitation of mantras:

    “Having turned the letters of mantra onto the right-side on the lunar disc, (the
    pupil) should concentrate the mind on every individual letter (of the mantra). When
    (the pupil) is united with the principle of reality (in every letter), (the pupil) should
    start it again.” (Vajrasattva) also explains (the way of) gaining the attainments of the
    mundane world and the supramundane world: “Counting the beads, one should not
    limit the number of beads. However, when one realises the entry into reality, one's
    mind should not be scattered, and one should take the yoga of one's deity as the

    (This text) minutely explains the twenty kinds of non-accomplished characteristics, and explains the various characteristics which are close to the attainment.

    That is our Pranayama and why it is not the same as the common one in other yogas. It is not a breath exercise, in fact there isn't really any breath. It is a mental exercise, usually accompanied by images of syllables if not the whole alphabet. For those of us who can barely visualize a dot, there is still what you could call a subtle interaction of sound, voice, and mind which is very interesting and we could perhaps say healing. Since this part more or less skipped the beginning, that is why we will focus on exercises going into Pranayama.

    Of its sea of mandalas it says:

    (The text) contains the four mandalas of the five families and the four mudras, and contains the thirty-seven
    deities. Each family contains the thirty-seven (deities), or the one deity consists of
    the thirty-seven (deities), and contains the four mandalas and the four mudras.

    Each of them entered each other like Indra's network made of jewels, all of which
    illuminate each other endlessly. If a practitioner can perceive the substance of this
    yoga properly, like the universally shining Buddha, each chief member and minor
    member of the body (anga-pratyanga) and each hair-hole (roma-kupa) and each
    major mark (laksana) and each secondary mark (anuvyanjana) and each instrument
    of religious merit {punya-sambhara) and each instrument of knowledge (jnanasambhara) abide in the enlightenment-position. (The text) states the Unique Buddha-qualities (avenika-buddhadharma) of two vehicles (dvi-yana) of yoga.
    (The text) explains the actions of dharma of the pledge of the mandala equal in
    measure to space, and the accomplishment (of them) is the same with the mentioned
    above. Though each is divided, each is not mixed and completely attains the four
    Bodies, namely, Svabhava-kaya, Sambhoga-kaya, Nirmana-kaya and Nisyandakaya. These immediately give welfare and happiness to all living beings, Bodhisattvas, Sravakas, Pratyekabuddhas and Tirthakas, so it is named as the
    Doctrine of Yoga-vajrayana.

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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    STTS and Vairocana Abhisambodhi Tantra (VAT)

    In comparing some of the translation to the original STTS, it is not missing much. Its writing style is very dry, a bit like studying molecules. Chapter Twenty-four is somewhat bland in amounting to "a woman like" each of the Bodhisattvas. Nothing individually about them. One of the points we want to make in the tantras is perhaps the theory of Ganesh or Ganapati. Most of the Hindu gods are limited to a single Shakti who is his wife and considered to be basically just like him. Ganesh collects them all.

    Chances are, this was an easier way to make people accept and learn it, and it may be almost a joke that what eventually happens in Dakarnava Tantra which has around a thousand deities is that it names the female first and then that she is with a male copy of her. Actually that is just a way of saying it is mostly about the subtle body.

    I noticed something near the end of the chapter, because I was confused about how the STTS perceives Karma Family, and in fact it is only one time and it is here, almost at the end of the book, in the only section that deals with images in the "female Vajradhatu mandala". And so that is something you can definitely point out here, and what the translation says is:

    (9) The next section starting with the words, “Then” and ending with the
    words, “The Lord Vajra said thus”, describes the secret attainment of
    generating the mudra-bonds of all the families. According to this section, the
    method of generating the mudra-bonds of the five Tathagatas is to sit in the vajra-posture of meditation, form the vajra-bond, and abide in Vajrasattva-samadhi.

    As usual it makes four mandalas of the Families, and in the first one, we can find the state of a Mahatma related to Mahamudra, along with Kaya Vak Citta which is also a main mode of practice:

    yathā rājñāṃ svamudrābhiḥ mudryate rājaśāsanaṃ /
    mahātmanāṃ svamudrābhirāmudryante tathā janāḥ // 1 //
    kāyavākcittavajrāṇāṃ pratibimbaprayogataḥ /
    mahātmanāṃ mahāmudrā iti vijñāya sidhyatī- // 2 //

    tyāha bhagavān mahāmudraḥ //

    This is for Vairocana and he corresponds to Body and/or the physical plane, and "this" is Mahamudra at first, putting the image of the deity on the Body. And so the cycle runs to Karma Mudra, which must be a goal of Attainment here since it makes a brand new Family. Once this is mastered, then it is like you do it the other way where the achieved Karma Mudra is first and the goal is Mahamudra of the tantras and as praised by Naro, Tilo, etc.

    The end of the cycle says:

    karmakulamudrābandhotpattisiddhiguhyatantraṃ /

    anatikramaṇīyā hi vajrājñā karmabhūri ca /
    ājñāvatastu tatkarma vijñāya laghu sidhyatī- //

    tyāha bhagavān vajraḥ //

    It is a new Family, and its Lord or Bhagavan appears to be missing an actual name like Vajra Pani or Vajra Sattva.

    The subject of this section however is Utpatti or Generation Stage...Bandha Utpatti Siddhi, a chain to the siddhi or power of Generation Stage. Is that an explicit subject here? Almost.

    Near the beginning of STTS, it summarizes Artha Utpatti Siddhi, that is, the explanation of it, followed be three kinds of Nispatti or Completions:

    kinte 'bhirucirarthotpattisiddhijñānaṃ vā, ṛddhisiddhiniṣpattijñānaṃ vā, vidyādharasiddhiniṣpattijñānaṃ vā, yāvat, sarvatathāgatottamasiddhiniṣpattijñānaṃ ve

    At one point, it has White Uttama Siddhi followed by Yellow Artha Utpatti, Red Anuraga Gana, Blue Abhicara, and Variegated Universal Siddhi:

    tadyadi śvetālokaṃ paśyet tasyottamasiddhijñānaṃ śikṣayet / atha pītaṃ paśyet tasyārthotpattijñānaṃ śikṣayet / atha raktaṃ paśyet tato 'nurāgaṇajñānaṃ śikṣayet / atha kṛṣṇaṃ paśyet tato 'bhicārakajñānaṃ śikṣayet / atha vicitraṃ paśyet tataḥ sarvasiddhijñānaṃ śikṣayed

    It is not spoken of much, until Chapter Twenty-four, which has an Akasha Utpatti:

    anādinidhanaḥ satvaḥ ākāśotpattilakṣaṇaḥ /
    samantabhadraḥ sarvātmā kāmaḥ sarvajagatpatiḥ // 1 //

    which is relatively long, until it ends in the cycle having Utpatti of Karma Kula.

    And then the final chapter has Utpatti of the following four kinds:

    Heart, Mudra, Mantra, Vidya

    From my point of view, I do not need it to tell me anything about how to generate the Akash or Karma Family. At the same time, I expect this to be pretty difficult to most people who have never done it before. These early texts focus on Vairocana and there are some pretty good reasons for this.

    There are two practices of mind or consciousness or what it is. One is the Eight Consciousnesses or Asta Vijnana pattern which is the Yogacara terminology. So it includes the Three Natures and also each of the Ayatanas or sense faculty bases counted individually, so, eight total units.

    The other is just the Pancha Jina or Dhyani Buddhas themselves, which is the Skandhas terminology. In this, the physical unit meaning its senses is Fivefold Form, which is Form Skandha, called Rupa Skandha, which is Vairocana. Moreover, this has a physiological correspondence, which is in the upper part of the throat or rather the soft palate, called the Khecari point. It is true that if you do Hatha Yoga then there is a physical Bandha or Lock which consists of jamming your tongue into it. Because we are trying to employ a Noumenal path, then, I do not really suggest doing that. The target is basically the same; it is considered a junction point where all five senses are bundled into a single input which is given to the brain. And so I would suggest searching for that mentally and with inner feeling. That, more or less, is our Skandha, and the only thing in the set that could be said to be physical or involving the senses.

    The rest of the Skandhas are purely psychological, which I would describe as the barrier between us and experiencing the Three Natures in clarity. Until you can remember them, they can be called Nama Skandha which means Name, since it is stuff we think people are talking to when they say our name. More specifically, Vijnana Skandha perceives two Objects: Form--Rupa Skandha, and Name--Nama Skandha, meaning the other three which are only mental (Feeling, Perception, and Constructs).

    And so what we are going to learn to do with Vairocana and these Buddha Skandhas is almost literally fry them.

    To accomplish the Yoga, in the sense of a practice, that goes along with the teachings of Dhyani Buddhas, means something along the lines of you have to find and identify them and we place them in a bundle and burn them all away. That is the Esoteric Community or Guhyasamaja and Six Limb Yoga.

    Vairocana is the main deity of Vajradhatu, which continues as the Sixth Mandala of Namasangiti Manjushri.

    However, he also has a character which speaks much more towards Manjushri and Tara.

    The following is in the same class of Yoga Tantra but is likely a little older than STTS having probably at least two translations:

    Mahavairocana Abhisambodhi Tantra (partial)

    Vairocanabhisambodhi Sutra

    Its full title is Mahāvairocana Abhisaṃbodhi Vikurvita Adhiṣṭhāna Tantra, together with Vajrasekhara it comprises the Shingon school, and was probably the first "complete" tantra, composed around the seventh century at Nalanda, translated to Chinese at the latest by 724.

    If one was to actually do it, it would also involve a complicated series of hand mudras like STTS. However it is perhaps more elegant and direct in a few ways. Superficially, it is simple, having Three Families and Three Mandalas, Body, Speech, and Mind. There is also a Secret Mandala but it comes from Mind.

    And, instead of discarding a Three Family explanation when I am in a minority view of trying to explain Seven, it is indispensible.

    It is broadly behind any Mahayana and Vajrayana owing to Śāntideva’s acceptance and use as a textual authority (āmnāya) of the Trisamaya–rāja, one of the sources of the Mahā–vairocana Tantra. It is well-known; Vairocana Abhisambodhi Tantra is commented by Buddhaguhya in Pindartha.

    It is Yogacara doctrine:

    ... when the MVT [i.e. Mahavairocana Tantra] speaks of knowing your mind as it truly is, it means that you are to know the inherent natural state of the mind by eliminating the split into a perceiving subject and perceived objects which normally occurs in the world and is wrongly thought to be real. This also corresponds to the Yogacara definition ... that emptiness (sunyata) is the absence of this imaginary split. ...

    The tantra is Mahavairocana speaking to Vajrasattva.

    Nagarjuna received the text of the Mahāvairocana Tantra directly from Vajrasattva inside an iron stupa in South India.

    There are no known surviving Sanskrit copies. There is a Tibetan to Japanese comparison which runs over 2700 pages and has fifty-five Lokesh Chandra articles.

    Kwan Yin says:

    If you want to be reborn in the pure lands of the ten directions, then make the utpala mudra of holding a blue lotus.

    The mudra is found in Vairocana Abhisambodhi Tantra. Bhattacharya explains it well in Indian Buddhist Iconography around p. 22 on Arya Tara, although Sita is the only one given who actually does it. Arya Tara says:

    "With this Mudra the goddess of the essence of Knowledge in the
    front should be propitiated, and then she should be commingled with
    the goddess of the essence of Time within, and by so doing the non-
    duality of the two should be meditated upon."

    But more particularly with Vairocana, we have a mandala that gives a very good Sutra-to-tantra portrayal. Firstly, Samadhi may have hundreds of definitions and experiences and so forth, but, Buddhist practice grades and refines that so to speak, until one attains the tantric meaning of samadhi. And here the ranks from Dharma Samgraha are:

    Catvāraḥ samādhayaḥ, tad-yathā:
    There are four concentrations, they are:

    {1} Śūraṅgamo,
    {1} Heroic march,

    {2} gagaṇa-gañjo,
    {2} sky-jewel,

    {3} vimala-prabhaḥ,
    {3} pure light,

    {4} siṁha-vikrīḍitaś-ceti.
    {4} and lion’s sport.

    So what happens is the first indicates Surangama Sutra and Parasol--and so we will bring this in soon. Secondly is a different word for Sky, Gagana. And so with Vairocana, he is going to hypostasize Prajnaparamita (Sutra) to Locana (Tantra) through a White Dharmodaya or Reality Source. Therefor, this would be the beginning of what is called in the tantras Locana doing Dharmadhatu Suvisuddhi or the interior mental purifications which are the experience of the Bodhisattva Path.

    At the most basic, Locana means Eye.

    At the more profound, Locana is the Wisdom of Vairocana, which we do not have in our mundane conditions, so she and the Prajnas are going to get burned along with the male Buddhas.

    The Body Mandala in VAT starts with a Hundred and Twenty-two deities in what the translation calls:

    That Arisen from the Matrix of Great Compassion (Maha Karuna Garbhodbhava or MKG):

    It has one gate.

    East is the Tathagatas' mandala--which is a white lotus with a white triangle (sunya, animitta, and apranidhi), which is marked with anusvara and vajra. Two rays of light arise from it and go to the Ten Directions. The rays are sambhoga and nirmana kayas arising from the dharmakaya. Or it is encircled with white rays and Gagana Locana is to its north. She is Gold Dressed in white, has the nature Prajnaparamita of Abhisambodhi, Mother of Protectors--Buddhas. This triangle is a Dharmodaya, whitish green triangle or Dharmakaya or mudra of all the Buddhas.

    North, Avalokiteshvara is with Light Green Tara dressed in white, Three-eyed white Bhrkuti with white, yellow, and red rays, Pandaravasini dressed in white, Vidya Vasumati, Maha sthama prapta, Gold Yasodhara; Hayagriva the color of the rising sun. Pandara is the utterly pure continuum, Hayagriva is the burning path to her; Tara is similarly described as a method of Pandara who herself is the continuum of reality.

    South is a Cintamani and Yellow-Green Vajradhara; Vajrapani serves as Accomplishment of Activities here. Mamaki is his consort (destroys demons with a fury illusion, Vajrapani's consort, the Perfection of Insight endowed with Awareness Accomplishing Activities in nature), Greenish-Yellow Vajrashrnkala the Noble Path who is the Summoner (Priyangu greenish-yellow who threatens, gazes, then smiles, and pulls beings on the Path with her Chain), Vajrankusi, Vajrasuci (the Immediate Path of Mother Prajnaparamita in nature) , Candra Tilaka, Sixteen Vajradharas of four kinds of Vajradhara starting with Nisprapancha, Gaganamala (Pure Sky), Vimalanetra (Stainless Eye), ending with Citravasadhrk (wears multi-colored clothes).

    West is for Acala, considered the inner gatekeeper. Acala squints one eye and is Awareness of Sameness, or Ratna Equality Wisdom. Wayman also stumbled with whether Trailokyavijaya is Acala or a specific deity, or a mission that could be handled by a few. The three wolrds conquered are earth, ether, heaven, or the tiers of this mandala. Trailokyavijaya is murky black, color of the end of time.

    The second ring starts in the east with Sakyamuni in a Mahendra mandala; Buddha Locana, is to his east; her symbol is a Fiery Yellow Triangle. She appears to be doubled in this mandala.

    He emits five Usnisas, and then there is Urna, Aparajita and Aparajita, and the other three Usnisas. Aparajita is Sakyamuni's Immediate Path in nature and Aparajita reveals his power.

    There is a batch of Hindu entities from Prithvi to Camunda he has female Jaya and Vijaya. Buddha Locana (his "mother" or yum) and Vidya Urna (Tilaka), Sitatapatra and Usnisa deities, and undrawn but imagined Pure Abode and Worldly deities, including the Lord of Mantras Aparajita with Aparajita goddess with a Parasol (the Immediate Path in Nature of Sakyamuni). All of the second rank is his. To his east are Varuna and Surya--Aditya with his consorts Jaya and Vijaya. The directions, path of the moon, etc., are in Antariksha, or, this is in Sambhogakaya, explaining the Dharma.

    Then in the Third rank or Earth plane there is Vajravarada which is Manjughosha. He has four male Heroes and five female Messengers, Kesini, Upakesini, Citra, Vasumati, and Akarsani. Then several male Bodhisattvas such as Ksitigarbha (earth womb who includes Ratna deities) and Akashagarbha.

    Vajradhara is serving as a conflux of Jewel and Karma Families hypostasized to Vajra.

    Vasumati is already a Vidya so no wonder she begins the Dharanis in Namasangiti. Manjughosha and Namasangiti are both Manjushri.

    In the latter portions of the book there are given a few seed syllables like Gam Gagana Locana, Bhrum Urna, and in the secret portion you find Vidya Queen Sumbha, and Maha Yoga Yogini Yogesvari Khanjalike (Kha Anjali). Space is supposed to be bluer than Wind because it has all the powers of samadhi. This is Upholding Yoga Mudra.

    That is from the end of Chapter Fifteen "Eight Secret Mudras". The last one, Upholding Yoga Mudra, is for Yogeshvari, who is saying two things to the trainee, Maha Yoga, and Kha. So it implies a more powerful yoga practice than currently known, and represents Kha as deep blue space.

    Sumbha is associated with Noose, the goddesses Aparajita and Janguli appear to have something to do with this, Gagana Ganja is second or Samadhi of Entry, similar to Entering the Mandala.

    What Locana's mudra does is Uphold the Secret Mandala or Pancha Jina with the Tathagata retinue Ratna-ketu is white, Samkusumita-raja is yellow, Dundubhi-ghosa is maroon and Amitabha is red.

    In the southeastern
    comer there is the Bodhisattva Samantabhadra, in the north-eastern
    comer there is the Bodhisattva Avalokitesvara, in the south-western comer
    there is the Bodhisattva Manjusn-kumara-bhuta and in the north-western
    comer there is the Bodhisattva Maitreya. On all the stamens you should
    depict the Mother of all the Bodhisattvas, the Six Perfections and the
    Samadhis. Below, you should depict the crowds of Vidyadharas and Wrathful
    Ones. At the stalk is Vajrapani. The remainder is a great ocean.

    VAT is probably the thing that goes most quickly and directly to the point of definitely "getting" Emptiness as Sky--Gagana and aligning it to an Inner Mental practice involving Yogeshvari of a Kha nature.

    The translation insists that there is a Buddha Image meditation with six attributes, and that is also necessary to have an image-free state. The teaching of mantra assists in this. It teaches to move to Whispered and Silent/Mental recitation as the way to do it. It is replete with Mudras, which each have a mantra and visualization. For example:

    Ch. VIII Samadhi without Perceptual Forms

    Just as when you have changed your body into the impure deity, (139a) you have
    changed to resemble the colour and shape of that deity, so also when you have
    changed yourself into the intrinsic nature of the deity without perceptual forms, you
    change yourself into the intrinsic nature of the pure deity, if you have entered the
    samadhi which is without perceptual forms. He will attain the samadhi which is without
    perceptual forms. He will reside in the intrinsic nature of the pure deity.

    6. ‘Lord of the Secret Ones, when he abides in the samadhi without
    perceptual forms, the mantra deities uttered by the Tathagatas will draw near
    and come into his presence.’

    When he abides in the intrinsic nature of the pure deity, the deities of the techniques
    spoken of by the Tathagata will be accomplished. 'Come into his presence' means that
    those deities will come face to face with that mantrin.

    Then it is going to explain Pranayama, that you recite a mantra spoken, then whispered, then mentally:

    I have explained the four members [of recitation]
    which combine the inner and outer:
    that is the mundane [recitation],
    best of those with cognitive objects.
    The excellent whispered recitation
    engrossed in the drawing-in of the syllables,
    with your manas focussed on the deity,
    I have prescribed for that with cognitive objects. (155b)
    The supramundane is that done mentally,
    ceasing to do the drawing-in and so on.
    You should make yourself one with the deity,
    perceiving both to be identical,
    it should be inseparable from the nature of your manas.
    In no other way should it be done.

    And so that is Nirakara in a Yogacara teaching. In the next chapter it is then taught as the one link to the Dharmakaya via the Speech or mantric aspect. It sounds a little more powerful and so yes learning how to do the Pranayama and about Forms and Formlessness is powerful. As it indicates when all are combined properly you are going to enter Luminous Mind.

    Then the Speech aspect begins:

    Ch. 10


    Vairocana emanates Gagana Locana and enters the samadhi called ‘Arising From the Deathless’ (amrtodaya): Amrta
    signifies ‘deathless’ and also the dharmakaya, emptiness.

    How does that embodiment of the core of
    Enlightenment, which they see, appear? It is ‘devoid of proliferations, like space’ and so
    forth. Like space: Its intrinsic nature is emptiness, luminous by nature and without
    impurities. Without proliferations ( nisprapanca): This means it is free from all internal
    selective concepts (vikalpa) of the intellect (mano-vijnana). In non-dual union with
    practice. It is the non-dual union of practice by the configurations of his Body, Speech
    and Mind, and the embodiment of the core of Enlightenment {bodhimanda-kaya) ,
    because the two are inseparable in nature. The embodiment of the core of
    Enlightenment is ’like the fruition of karmic action’.

    It uses colors, and gives seed syllables for the retinues beginning with:

    A = Gold Mahavairocana

    East = Am

    Northeast = Ga Gagana Locana

    As a comparison to this sky-based Locana, from Visible Mantra who lists Vairocana's consort as Akasha Dhatvishvari:

    In Shingon there is another important mantra which links Mahāvairocana to the six elements - the five letters here representing the material elements, and Mahāvairocana himself represents the element of consciousness. The idea is that the whole of the universe is a manifestation of Mahāvairocana - all forms of the body of Mahāvairocana; all sounds are the voice of Mahāvairocana; and all mental activity are the mind of Mahāvairocana.

    A Vira Hum Kha

    It unusually ends on Sky or Kha syllable.

    Bafflingly, Kukai "lost" Mahamudra out of his next mantra, and, even when restored, people want to translate it to Great Seal. You can't really translate Mahamudra. Anyway, the above summarizes that Vairocana is doomed and he has to arise as Mahavairocana which means in Complete Sambhogakaya which makes Complete Manifest Buddha. Fivefold form is a unit, like a pill that he takes.

    Continuing in Speech Mandala, very many mudras are given, beginning with the assassin of the sixth Skandha or Sakkaya Ditthi:

    The Sword Mudra is the symbol of the Awareness that realizes the absence of
    autonomous existence to both phenomena and the individual. By this Awareness,
    belief in an innately existing person (sahaja-satkaya-drsti) will be severed.

    it goes up to a roster that involves a swath of things from "higher tantras":

    74 Canda Maharosana, Mamaki, Vajrasrnkhala, Candra Tilaka, Vajrasuci, Vajra Fist, and it keeps going through the retinue through Locana, Aparajita, all the Hindu deities out to Nagas, Pisacinis, until out beyond the Planets it ends on Raksasas and Dakinis, who are Hri.

    We already know that Hri and dakinis have a ton to do with Lotus Family and Speech in all the tantras. And so we are kind of aiming at the same endpoint or bullseye as that.

    VAT has thirty chapters which end with a section about Agni:

    You should know that when the Bhagavat was formerly engaged in the Bodhisattva practice, the
    Bhagavat himself taught the virtuous instructions that appear in the Tirthika
    scriptures, such as, ‘You should not kill creatures apart from doing so as offerings
    to the gods'. The explanations about Agni in the Vedas of the Brahmins were
    taught in order to reduce the amount of slaughter of creatures among the
    Tirthikas and so forth, who being disposed to perversity, engage in such evil deeds.
    How is that known lo be so? Because as it says in the Noble Manjusri Tantra. ‘Even that
    with a small amount of truth was taught by me.

    He says that Abhiman Agni was self-arisen and then enumerates Agni's descendants. And from here he recommends doing an Inner Homa. This again has its version of the Four Activities and "miscellaneous rites".

    What stood out to me in the retinue is the sequence Mamaki--Vajrasuci--Vajrasrnkhala.

    Mamaki is Prajnaparamita endowed with Krtyanusthana Jnana, Accomplishing Activities in nature, Wisdom of Amoghasiddhi. That is very unusual because she ostensibly is in Vajra Family, but, this tantra lacks the development found in STTS that may have said Karma Kula for the first time.

    Suci is below Mamaki, whereas Srnkhala is beside Vajrapani. She also is going to be seen as part of Karma Family in later tantras.

    Suci is Solar Fire in VAT as it always is elsewhere.

    She mantricly Penetrates all Dharmas:

    NSV Sarvadharma- Nirvedhani Vajrasuci Varade

    VaJRasUCI (Vajra Needle). Because she is the Immediate Path of the Mother
    Perfection of Insight in nature, she is drawn below her. She is called 'Vajrasuci
    because it is her disposition to pierce through to reality. (71b) Completely surrounded
    by her assistants: She has the branches of the Immediate Path, and since this is a royal
    entourage, it is possible for there to be servants and so on.

    She sounds important but we know nothing about her really. The Samputa Tantra does use it in a lower-case, generic way, that if you mess up your Samayas, then when you die, you will surely fall on the vajra needle. It sounds like it makes your aura burst like a water balloon, and, I suppose, whatever is left goes straight to hell.

    Immediate Path of Prajnaparamita.

    VAT does have something quite close to the Inverted Stupa, i. e. Crescent and Fiery Triangle, which previous Buddhas have explained, with Mamaki and Vajrasrnkhala being its first inhabitants.

    This also has Aparajita and Aparajita, who is "striking" (tadita), or such is her mantric epithet. When it means "striking the ground" it can also mean "lightning". That is possible, but, her images are usually called Slapping Aparajita.

    Vairocana Abhisambodhi Tantra is partly spoken by Nisprapanca Viharin Vajradhara, which Wayman translates as "dweller in non-elaboration". Its three mandalas are for Sky, Antariksa or Space, and Prithvi or Earth, and he also sensed that Sarasvati with Ila and Bhu or Bharati had been kept from the Vedic rite.

    Vajragarbha is Vajrapani in VAT. In other tantras he seems to convey the alphabet wheel.

    The similar deity in Samputa is of Vairocana nature:

    This deity appears to be the central filament of an alphabet lotus inside Vajraralli. From it proceed all mantras and siddhis, through the Dharmaralli, which is in Visva Granthi Maha Sthana.

    chos kyi ra li

    The deity Aralli when he is associated with the origination of phenomena.

    Aralli was understood as a male in Dakini Jala of Vairocana nature, conveying Adbhuta--Wonder--Amazement, and he is in the Bhaga of the Yoshid, working letters and sounds through various knots, I suppose, until reaching the Yoshid of the Heart.

    Mind or Secret Mandala avoids space and time, takes places in the lower earth, one should abide in the samadhi of a yellow Buddha with hair tied up in a jewel crown, called the ground of earth mandala. This system also uses the name Ratnaketu for the Buddha of Jewel Familiy. This rite is Vairocana providing inexhaustible Dharmadhatu to beings by the means of samadhi in this mandala. It is commented that sentient beings crave "realms" (dhatu), and dhatu is a coloring element to the white blankness or White Void Dharmadhatu, or, in weaving, void is white vertical threads, and dhatu is the variety of colored threads crossing it. It is taught not to think of the void only as enlightenment and ignore the realms, so again, prajna + compassionate means is emphasized. This is considered the top of Charya Tantra.

    The actual casting starts by saluting Prithvi:

    "“O Goddess [Devi]! You are a witness
    to the Levels [Bhumi] and Perfections [Paramitas],
    the special methods of practice
    of all the Protector Buddhas.
    Just as the Protector Sakyasimha
    overcame the armies of Mara,
    Likewise I shall be victorious over Mara
    and draw a mandala hereby!”

    It mentions that mantras with Hum and Phat accomplish what is in the province of Usnisa deities. Ones with namah and svaha are for samadhi-comprehension. Pure letters of quiescence and "fulfilling all hopes and wishes" are of all Buddhas and protective Bodhisattvas.

    There are probably three common combined forms of Dhatu and Ishvari into Dhatvishvari, which we have already found as:




    Space, Mind, and Subtle Elements.

    Akashadhatvishvari appears to abdicate "Empty Niche" and her name transfers to Maitri's Dakini.

    On a Sutra basis, Dharmadhatu is generally explained as mental objects, including the skandhas.

    But there is a difference between the unshaped, primordial Element, and its offspring or daughter as an Object consisting of it.

    The Objects therefor are the domain of Offering Goddesses (Bodhisattvas) and is generally a name with "vajra" as a suffix, such as Sabda Vajra or Prithvi Vajra--Sound Object, or, Earth Object, and so on.

    For meditative purposes, Dharmadhatu Vajra effectively means visualization of the deity. It does not come from an external stimulus, it exists in your mind, and so while the "mental object" of a worldly mind shifts constantly, we are trying to reduce our attention to only this thing as vividly as possible.

    Dharmadhatu Vajra's Root Element, Mother, or Prajna, in Kalachakra, is Viswamata (central energy from the heart down) whose higher aspect is Vajradhatvishvari (centered life energy from the heart up). The Great Commentary states:

    The purified forms of the two parts of the central channel, avadhuti
    above and s'ankhinl below, are the two other sakti, Jnanaparamita of the
    gnosis element, symbolized by the visarga, and Prajnaparamita of the space
    element, symbolized by the drop.

    Longchenpa's Great Chariot says that the Parasol is the Dharmadhatu; in Hevajra, Dharmadhatu Vajra is Khecari in the ring of Gauris.

    Here is Damarupa, fifth teacher of Margapala, surrounded by the sense goddesses, with Dharmadhatu Vajra bottom center holding a "triangular receptacle". Hers is white and points down. We have seen this, with Vairocana Abhisambodhi, where it is with Gagana Locana [Buddha Eye] or Prajnaparamita--from his perspective, this triangle also points down. Also, here, Rasa Vajra is holding a skull filled with the three nectars (medicine, deathlessness, wisdom). So these are preliminary seed images of what Generation Stage, or Varuni, will accomplish, a working Dharmodaya Mudra (ch. twelve in Sadhanamala) and the brewing of nectar:

    It arises in stages so "this" triangle will become the Triangle of Inverted Stupa when mixed with the heat of Tapas and Pranayama, which perhaps is indicated by the second Locana in the mandala..

    Peaceful Sitabani charnel ground is called the source of Upa-yoga, which is Vairocana Abhisambodhi and Vajrapani Abhisekha. When Mahesvara was destroyed, his heart went to Sitabani, and so it is no surprise it was an epicenter of tantric transmission.

    This is a Nyingma Vajrapani. On Mount Malaya, Taksaka was one of Five Excellent Ones to receive his yoga teaching. What is unusual is that in the sphere are three places identified by inscriptions: Varanasi, Sitavana Charnel Ground, and Meri Bawa (Akanistha or another charnel ground).

    VAT is Upa Yoga because it is really the top of the class of Charya Tantra. And so here it will dovetail with instructions for getting to Sva Deva or Deity. It has a specific standard:

    The equivalent to that [Calming or Shamatha] in the Kriya-Carya is the accomplishment [of those
    complete characteristics] when contemplating the six gods and when
    reaching the limit of the meditations of dwelling in the flame and dwelling
    in the sound.

    If, through one’s own power of contemplation in the meditation of
    dwelling in the sound, one is able to attract in actuality the physical and
    mental cathartic (kaya-prasrabdhi and citta-prasrabdhi), one accomplishes
    the complete characteristics of Calming.

    VAT is painstakingly teaching how to do it, but, if you can accomplish it through your own power, that works. It is a bit confusing by saying "six gods" whereas it is more like "increasingly intense stages of arising" of just one form, through things such as a Letter, and so on.

    So there are Kriya-Charya instructions we will set up before Yoga and Generation Stage.

    The Four Activities in STTS are intended to shear the limbs off Catuskoti, or defeat tendencies in the practitioner to lean off-balance.

    In Nepal, Family of One is Adi Buddha Mahavairocana and Prajnaparamita.

    In Sadhanamala, Khasarpana Avalokiteshvara 15 specifically refers to Vairocana Abhisambodhi Tantra, whereas White Kurukulla 185 is dealing with:


    Maya Jala or Illusion's Net or Indra's Net also "is" Vairocana similarly distributed or shared with Avalokiteshvara and Kurukulla.

    Physiologically, Indra Jala is above, or between the throat and the brain, and is mostly equivalent to Rupa Skandha, or, the junction of the senses.

    Vairocana originally usually is the center, or Space Element, of the mandala, but he is soon pushed out to the East to take over the Earth Element. The voidness of space is not just nothingness for its own sake, but, is the field in which Buddha Mind expresses itself. When that takes over the body due to mantric resonance, you have a Nirmana Chakra, or Vairocana and Locana related to Earth. That is the first chakra in the Buddhist subtle body. Obviously then it does not really even exist by default.

    The part in the throat--head, does, and so from the Noumenal view, we are just sort of becoming aware of it.

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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    Kriya-Charya Pith on How to establish a Yoga Deity

    Vairocana Abhisambodhi Tantra functions like the following dividing line between a "novice" and a "mantrin", because it is the apex of Charya Tantra in determining who is fit for Yoga Tantra. Overall, the pith is going to show us how to line up components of a mental sadhana with the practice of Pranayama. It is the instructions for a single deity. Most of us are not ever going to toss a flower in a ritual to be assigned one. But some are approachable, combined with the fact that someone can do this in any comfortable manner where they can concentrate.

    It is comprehensive and would have been more useful to me had it been around when I was trying to start. Nobody explained to me that Tara is a Devata, and I had to more or less accumulate bits and pieces going backwards. The superior forwards motion given here probably does mean weeks or months spent focusing each small portion.

    There is a tremendous difference between Deva or "god" and Devata or "god", or...they do not translate that directly...

    For the most part, Devas are permanent with respect to our world system, and live for a Day of Brahma. Some of them have the nature of partaking in Bliss. That is just their birthright, they do not understand it, or have anything to do with teaching it. This is encapsulated within the Mahesvara subjugation story.

    A quick explanation from Sacred Place starts with devas of a previous eon living in bodies of light, but, they craved sensation and descended towards earth to eat physical food. This made the first Four Pithas. Next, the Eight Upapithas such as Malava were settled by Gandharvas, these are the Khecari places, "inhabited by those who move in the sky". Then the Ksetra or Fields such as Kamarupa were inhabited by Yaksha, while the Upaksetra such as Kosala were inhabited by their servants. Raksasa moved into areas such as Himalaya. These Eight Places are Bhucari, "inhabited by beings roaming the earth".

    Subterranean Nagas then took control of the meeting places Melapaka and their servants inhabited Upamelapaka. Asura went from the depths of Mt. Meru to the Smasana and their servants went to the Upasmasana. These Eight Places are called Patala Vasini "inhabited by those below the ground". Rudra Mahesvara took over the charnel grounds until Vajrapani overpowered him on Mount Malaya (Lanka). His head went south to Body's End, his heart went east to Sitabani, his guts went west to Lankakuta, his genitals went north to Padmakuta, his right arm went southeast to Self-formed Mounds, his left arm went southwest to Secret Great Pleasure, his right leg went northeast to Lokakuta, his left leg went Northwest to Creeping Great Laughter. These parts grew into the Trees and the charnel grounds spread around.

    Rudra's servants surrendered the other Twenty-four Sites, which became the domain of wrathful deities.

    In The Taming of the Demons, the edge of the cemeteries has the Eight Pisaci Gandharva daughters of samsaric existence, or animal-headed bodhisattvas. Then are the Eight Gauris. Then animal-headed gatekeepers, and intoxicated corner goddesses. This is really all at Mount Malaya around Krodishvari Greedy Goddess of Desire (Kamadhatvishvari), queen of diseases, before Rudra is gone. Vajrapani summons Vajrakumara Bhurkumkuta, makes him look like Rudra, and casts Rudra's five nectars lying around the cemeteries into him. Bhurkumkuta has sex with the females, who become enlightened gauris and so forth.

    Those Gauris or Candalis are the petals of the solar plexus, or they open it. And so if we pass the gatekeepers, and generate inner heat, there we are at the edge of the charnel ground. And so "crossing the cemetery" is getting these Gauris or these petals to send Inner Heat to the center. An Esoteric Exposition of the Bardo Thodol Part A: Vol 5 says the Matarah (Gauris) are in the diaphragm center, and the pisacis in the spleen. Usually, the "navel center" of meditation is considered below the navel, but diaphragm center is pretty much what I would mean by solar plexus.

    Gauris are in the retinue of Heruka in Dakini Jala, who is the center of its first mandala display. It then does something a little unusual when placing the Sixth Family in the center Space Element.

    The second, or Vajrasattva-centered mandala scheme in Dakini Jala has Vairocana East, Heruka South, Padmanartesvara West, and Vajrasurya North. Paramasva Family has four mandalas in the corners; in Chaturangarthaloka, Humkarakirti describes these as Four Activities, although an example has not been found in Tibet. The retinue of Vajrasattva has the eight peculiar to him being Samvari, Ahosukha, Pradipa, Sisya, Buddhabodhi, Dharmacakra, Trailokya, and Kamalata.

    That is more or less Vajrasattva's realm in Yoga. It is a clear Six Family Wheel and not a transitional guise such as Vajradhatu. The constituents of Yoga include Atma Tattva and Deva Tattva from Kriya-Charya, followed by Mandala. In other words, progress in Yoga Tantra goes to Full Mandala. But for its input, it is looking for a primary deity as developed in Kriya-Charya.

    Together, Atma and Deva Tattvas make Tattva Devata, the first of six or the reality god. The Six Gods of Kriya-Charya are intended as the Abhisambodhis plus Manifest Buddha.

    From Wayman's Introduction to the Buddhist Tantric Systems, it characterizes the instructions that are generally absent from lower tantra that prevent it from being the same as Completion Stage, such that a "conceptual model" of the Five Abhisambodhis is not very effective:

    In the three lower Tantras (i.e., Kriya, Carya, and Yoga) there are neither the aims (artha) nor the terms (vyavahara) of the Steps of Production {utpatti-krama) and the Steps of Completion ( nispanna-krama ). If one proceeds according to the characteristics of the Steps of Production, it is not sufficient to limit oneself to an intense contemplation (bhavana ) in immediacy conforming to the five perfections of the resultative complete Buddha, for it is also necessary to have the yoga of intense contemplation conforming to the three spheres of purification, namely, birth, death, and the intermediate state.

    Well, we already understand about the additional purifications and have ways of training this, and we have the aims and terms of Utpatti or Generation Stage. This means we can get from where we are now into a hair's breadth splitting image of what we should allow to be above and beyond preliminary Yoga:

    For the complete characteristics of the Steps of Completion, it does
    not suffice to have merely the intense contemplation of voidness ( sunyata )
    of the natural state of things ( dharma ) and the intense con¬
    templation of the yoga of the winds ( vayu ), but it is also necessary to
    have three special things, as the case may be: (1) the knowledge of bliss-
    void ( sukha-sunya ) which occurs from making the wind(s) enter, stay,
    and rise for leaving in the central vein ( avadhuti ); (2) the divine body
    which occurs from that [knowledge]; and (3) the yoga of piercing the
    vital centers in the uncommon ‘means’ body (upaya-deha) attracted by
    those two (i.e. the knowledge and the divine body). In the three lower
    Tantras, there is the intense contemplation of the voidness of the natural
    state and there is the intense contemplation of the yoga of the winds;
    but as the others (i.e. the three special things) are lacking, there is no
    intense contemplation of the Steps of Completion.

    While we are getting there, it is said that things from "lower tantras" are still baskets that can be sensitive to more profound practice:

    ...in each of the three lower Tantras, there are both the yogas
    called “with signs” ( sanimitta-yoga ) and “without signs” (animitta-yoga).

    Since we are mainly using information "from the schools" on a comparative basis, we can take the position that yes, the "system of Tara" involves simple Kriya deities such as Parasol and Marici who do operate and manifest everything it is said they "don't teach".

    Yoga Nidra is also a copy of most of this material along with some Homa information.

    It is conversant with using Mahamudra = Body Mandala:

    In the Kriya-Carya one contemplates the Body as the Great Seal ( maha -
    mudra ), Speech as Incantation ( dharani ), and Mind as Reality ( tattva ).

    Body as the Great Seal: This is the contemplation of the six gods.

    [that is not Six Families, but rather more like increments]

    Speech as Incantation : This is the meditative object in the sounds of
    the syllables of the Incantation, and the meditative object in the form
    of the syllables, in the phase of meditation attended with muttering.
    However, the main part is the meditative object in the sounds of the
    Incantation in the phases of meditation of dwelling in the flame and
    meditation of dwelling in the sound.

    [here again is muttering and the union of wind and mantra]

    Mind as Reality : This is [the three things, viz.] the meditative object
    in the Reality of the mind, the yoga without signs, and the limit of the
    meditation of dwelling in the sound. Because it constitutes the contem¬
    plation of voidness which is the basis of the affiliation with the Dharma-
    kaya at a subsequent time, it grants the freedom of the Dharmakaya,
    and thus is the meditation which grants freedom at the limit of the
    sound. That being so, those three are identical.

    [This high point is considered a contemplation of voidness, which itself is the basis for future Dharmakaya awareness.]

    Parasol is going to commandeer this Vajrosnisa ability which is the same explanatory structure:

    The Dhyanottara is a portion of the great Tantra of the Kriya Tantra
    called the Vajrosnisa-tantra. It is also regarded as a kind of Continuation
    of that Tantra. It deals with ten kinds of subject matter: 1. The char¬
    acteristics of the place where one practises; 2. The Self Reality; 3. The
    Reality of the vidya-dharani ; 4. The Reality of the God; 5. The medita¬
    tion of dwelling in the fire; 6. The meditation of dwelling in the sound;
    7. The meditation which grants liberation at the limit of the sound; 8.
    The rite of engaging in the practice of the vidya-dharani 9. The rite of
    the burnt offering; 10. The initiation rite. Of these, the three headed
    by “The Self Reality” show the four members of recitation that are of
    great importance in both the Kriya and Carya Tantras. The three kinds
    of meditation, starting with “dwelling in the fire”, are the main part
    (maula ) of the action of the Kriya and Carya Tantras. The rite of en¬
    gaging in the practice of the vidya-dharani shows how to perform the
    service ( seva ) which precedes [that main part] and how to perform that
    which concludes [it].

    So, to mostly just be making a rolling snowball of awareness about the Abhisambodhis, we are going to truncate them into the "gods", which equivalently translate into a syllable such as Tam for Tara, or Mam for Marici, and so on. If we rigorously followed the rites that visualize them, the first Abhisambodhi, Pratyaveksana, places the sixteen vowels as sixteen kinds of voidness transforming into a moon disk in the heart. This is basically the same as full Nairatma retinue, or, all ten Gauris plus the activated seed or nucleus of five. We will just sort of bookmark the equivalencies, and look at this as the streamlined generic method to obtain a Devata or Deity.

    This Kriya-Chara Devata has six iterations, related to Abhisambodhi, which are:

    Abhi. no. 1, meditation on sixteen kinds of voidness, and God no. 1, contemplation of voidness;

    Abhi. no. 2, symbols of consonants, and God no. 2, sound god;

    Abhi. no. 3, sees directly the Samantabhadra, and God no. 3, the God seen on one’s own mind;

    Abhi. no. 4, beams of light from all three realms enter thunderbolt of his heart, and God no. 4, the rays, together with the gods, withdrawn;

    Abhi. no. 5, transformation into body with Characteristics and Minor Marks, and God no. 5, blesses spots in his body.

    Finally representing Emergence as a Complete Manifest Buddha.

    Buddhist Deity Yoga derives from Tattva or "aspects of reality" starting with Atma Tattva. In the Preliminaries, we find that there is a type of exchange from residing in a human ego, to that of Vajrasattva. And so we are reading atma in those terms, and mostly without recourse to the self-generation, and it is going to combine Tattva with Muttering, which is Pranayama.

    The main part of the four members of muttering (Ground, Objective and Subjective;
    Immersion in Mind; Immersion in Sound):

    Here there are two parts : the service to be done through contemplation
    of Self Generation; and the method of presenting offerings through the
    contemplation of Generation in Front.

    [Self = Subjective Ground, and Front = Objective Ground]

    a. Generation of Self into Deity [here at most we do Divine Pride of Vajrasattva, or possibly start a connection to Tara, etc., in an outer form]

    The first god

    The Self Reality ( *atma-tattva ) is the contemplation (bhavana) that (1) is
    free from such concepts as singleness and multiplicity by recourse to
    the reasoned formulations of the Madhyamika; and (2) which decides
    that one’s own mind is void because accomplished by intrinsic nature.
    -After that, the God Reality (*devata-tattva) is the contemplation of the
    reality of the god to be contemplated and the Self Reality as inseparable
    and as devoid of intrinsic nature. The two realities constitute the Reality
    God ( *tattva-devata ) among the six gods. They are equivalent to the
    contemplation of voidness in the higher Tantra divisions that attends
    the muttering of such expressions as svabhava and sunyata.

    (* svabhava ’ and * sunyata the author presumably refers to the
    two dharanis : Om svabhavasuddhah sarvadharmah svabhavasuddho ’ham and Om
    sunyatajnanavajrasvabhavatmako 'ham)

    [So the first, Suddha or Purity mantra, concerns Atma Tattva or Self Reality, concept-free by becoming centered in Catuskoti, the second, Sunyata or Emptiness Mantra, concerns the inseparable Devata Tattva or God Reality, or Ishvar Reality. Together, they are the Tattva Devata or Ishvar. Again, this is inherently constructed to the formula of Guru Yoga plus Deity.]

    In Tson-kha-pa’s Shags rim chen mo, 60a-6, ff., the first god is called the don dam pahi lha ( *paramartha-deva ) and consists in the pride that oneself is one with the god (bdag dan lha gnis gcig par na rgyal byas te), indissoluble like the mixture of water and milk.

    The combination makes a Reality God: Tattva Devata. This is "the first god".

    "You" are not a permanent entity, neither is it, you are a witness of "some processes", and the Deity is one that is not dependent, nor false, nor bait for some new suffering; it lacks faults. Neither one of you have intrinsic or truly-established existence, you are united by being mutual outcroppings of Void.

    The second god

    Then one imagines that the god to be contemplated (i.e. created medi¬
    tatively) out of the sphere of the Void is that very god in essence, and
    that his aspect (akara) is the intonation of the sounds of the dharani to
    be muttered. That [aspect] as the mind’s sole meditative object ( alam -
    band) is the Sound God (*sabda-devata).

    The third god

    Then one imagines that his own mind ( citta ) transforms itself in the sky
    into a moon disk ( candra-mandala ) upon which the god to be contem¬
    plated is that very god in essence. The contemplation of its aspect as
    the aspect of the letters, the color of liquid gold, of the dharani to be
    muttered, is the Letter God ( *aksara-devata)

    For those Sound and Letter Gods, it is satisfactory to use either the
    long ( dirgha ), the essence (hrdaya), or the near-essence ( upahrdaya )

    The Shags rim chen mo, 60b-4, makes it clear that the Letter God is the inseparable
    union of oneself and the God Reality like the attachment of pure quicksilver to golden

    The fourth god

    Then one imagines that from those letters emanate innumerable rays
    of light, from the ends of which issue innumerable aspects of the body
    of that god to be intensely contemplated. They purify all sentient beings
    from their sins, obscurations, and sufferings, and they give joy to all the
    Buddhas and their sons [i.e. Bodhisattvas] by making offerings to them.
    Then the rays, together with the gods, are withdrawn, absorbed by the
    letters; and the moon, together with the letters, transforms itself into
    the perfected body of the god to be contemplated. This as the meditative
    object is the Form God (*rupa-devata).

    At the time of doing service through contemplation of Self Generation,
    one need only contemplate the Lord ( *prabhu ) but not his retinue ( pari -
    vara ), palace ( vimana ), etc.

    [Fourth is really Hook Rays, common to sadhanas, which for Letter God means they issue from the Letters, but, it is a general principle of filling space with purification and returning to manifest something.]

    The fifth god

    Then, if one knows [them] he touches with the various dharanis and seals
    (mudra): 1 . the crown of the head, 2. the space between the eyebrows
    ( urna-kosa ), 3. the eyes, 4. the shoulders, 5. the neck, 6. the heart,
    and 7. the navel. If one does not know [them] to that extent, he touches
    those places with a single dharani and seal of that particular Family
    among the three Families. And having been [thus] blessed (adhisthita),
    they are the Seal God (*mudra-devata).

    That is equivalent to the blessing of the sense bases (ayatana) in the
    higher Tantra divisions.

    [It has smoothed the hundreds of mudras of the complex systems into a basic Nyasa or Placement.]

    The sixth god

    Then, while the aspect of the god is bright, one fortifies the ego ( aham -
    kara or garva). That [aspect] taken as the mind’s sole meditative object
    is the Sign God ( *nimitta-devata ).

    Those [gods] are equivalent to the generation by means of the five
    Abhisambodhis in the higher Tantras.

    When achieving the sixth, you begin Muttering or Pranayama:

    The Anuttara pranayama means the abolition
    of the coursing into the right and left channels; the present pranayama [i.e. of the
    Kriya Tantra] means the abolition of the coming and going of the wind (vayu) riding
    on discursive thought (vikalpa ), as well as the inner containment [of the wind].

    Vairocana tantra and Buddhaguhya say: prana is the vital air (vayu) passing through the
    doors of the sense organs ( indriya ); ayama is the dispersal into other
    sensory domains ( visaya ) of the mental elements (*tarka). Binding or
    abolishing the prana-ayama means preventing the vital air and the mental
    elements from escaping outside, and containing them inside.

    On what occasion should that [particular pranayama] be contemplated?
    On the occasion of yoga with signs (sanimitta-yoga). And on what
    occasion within that [yoga with signs] should it be contemplated?

    It is contemplated on the occasion of service ( seva ) in the Kriya and Carya
    Tantras, either after completing contemplation of the six gods, or after
    accomplishing Generation in Front, as the case may be.

    For the sake of what requirement is it contemplated? The requirement
    to solidify the meditative object involving the abolition of the craving
    for ordinary appearances and involving the transfiguration of one’s
    body into that of a god. For solidifying that, the requirement to inhibit
    the escape of the mental elements.

    What is the profound means of inhibiting that? The mind’s steed is
    the vital air (vayu); therefore, when the vital air is contained within,
    the mind is held with no freedom of its own. That is why one contem¬
    plates the prana-ayama.

    What is the procedure in this contemplation?

    Controlling the vital centers of the body, one draws the upper vital air (urdhva-vayu) inside
    to the navel, pressing it down; and draws the lower vital air (adhas-vayu)
    up to the navel, holding it there. The mind is fixed solely upon the god.
    Thereupon, when one is no longer able to retain the vital air, it is emitted,
    and while one is relaxing, the mind is fixed solely upon the god. Then
    he again holds the vital air within and contemplates in the same manner.

    [It looks like you have done well in Yoga when it becomes easy to draw the prana into the Three Channels. In Kriya-Chara, it is mainly just to "hold still" and get rid of distractions and stop it from leaking; in Yoga, you bind these doors and pull it inwards in reverse, from elaborate networks to more basic pathways until it centers in the navel.

    So in the many stages of progress, Pranayama at first smooths Vikalpa or discursive or distracting thought, until, eventually, energy is restricted to the Avadhut. You do it when you achieve the "six gods", or, once you kind of have this down, "six gods" is generic for Front Generation.]

    It describes the approximate sadhana before aspects of Muttering, each of which probably takes months. Everything is combined, and the new additions will be Mind and Sound:

    Generation of Deity in Front

    There are six things, offering and so on, to be done while accomplishing
    the Generation in Front: generation of the residence; invitation to the
    gods to be residents and offering of seats; exhibition of the seals; offering
    and praising; confession of sins; contemplation of the four boundless
    states, compassion ( karuna ), friendship {maitri), sympa¬
    thetic joy ( mudita ), and indifference ( upeksa ).

    "Residence" includes Flask, Golden Ground, Ocean of Milk, Mt. Meru, and everything up to stupas of the nature "victorious" and "radiant".

    Invitation requires oblations and uses the two thumbs gesture.

    Exhibition of Seals uses Vajra Samaya Mudra, then the seals of Three Families, and Removes Obstacles.

    Praise uses the more formal Offerings.

    A'. Confession of sins (papa-desana).

    B'. Refuge formula (sarana-gamana).

    C'. Sympathetic delight ( anumodana ) [with the merit (punya) and
    knowledge (jnana ) amassed by the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas].

    D'. Exhortation and entreaty [to the Buddha to turn the Wheel of the
    Law and to not depart into Nirvana as long as there be candidates].

    E'. Fervent aspiration ( pranidhana ) [to alleviate the sufferings of

    VT. Contemplation of the four boundless states (caturapramana-bhavana)
    and Generation of the Mind (cittotpada)

    In Sadhanamala, it is typical to do something similar, and the Four Boundless States are "plunged" into a Void condition, from which the deity begins its personal spawn sequence. From here, the Cittotpada is going to add Muttering on Mind and Sound:

    Those two [i.e., the Generation of Self and the Generation in Front]
    constitute members of muttering ( japa-anga ). For the genuine muttering
    one must complete the four members of muttering (Ground, Objective and Subjective;
    Immersion in Mind; Immersion in Sound). Consequently, the
    Dhyanottara says, “Immerse yourself in the sound, the mind, and the

    The “ ground ” member : The “ground” (T. gzi , S. *vastu ) is the body
    of the god in whose heart the dharani wheel is deposited. Of the two
    kinds, the “subjective ground” (bdag gi gzi) is the contemplation of
    oneself transfigured into a god; and the “objective ground” {gzan gyi
    gzi) is the contemplation of the god generated in front.

    The other two members of Muttering are visual--the Shape of the syllables--and their Sound:

    The member of immersion in mind (*citta-nimna): This has the vivid
    meditative object ( alambana ) consisting in one’s mind (citta) in the shape
    of a moon-mandala in the heart of the deity generated in front.

    The member of immersion in sound (*svara-nimna): This has the vivid
    meditative object consisting in the letters of the dharani to be recited,
    located upon that [moon -mandala].

    [That is a mantra wheel, which is standard for most deities.]

    Muttering while dwelling on the Shape of the syllables

    There are two kinds: muttering while dwelling on the shape of the
    syllables in the heart of the deity generated in front; muttering while
    dwelling on the shape of the syllables in one’s heart.

    The first kind : One binds the prana-ayama as previously described
    and mutters by way of the complete four members of muttering while
    simultaneously dwelling on the body of the deity generated in front and
    on the three syllables which are on the moon seat in the heart [of the
    deity’s body]. When exhaling, one should not mutter dharanis , but hold
    the mind fixed on one’s own body contemplated as the deity. Then,
    again holding the breath, one should mutter as before.

    The second kind : The garland of dharanis is at a modest distance in
    front of himself, slightly higher than himself, upon the moon in the
    heart of the deity generated in front. While inhaling, he attracts that
    [moon and garland] into himself and transfers it into his own heart.
    He dwells on it while muttering, as long as he does not release his breath;
    but when he exhales the wind, he is to imagine that the moon, along
    with the garland of dharanis , is emitted together with the wind and then
    is stationed in the heart of the god in front. Again in the same manner
    as before he transfers it into his own heart.

    Muttering while dwelling on the Sound of the syllables

    First one distinctly recalls the four members of muttering. Then,
    without dwelling on the shape of the syllables of the dharani, the moon,
    or the body of the god, one dwells on the tone of the sounds of the
    dharani while he recites. Moreover, it is not as though the dharani were
    being uttered by another person and being heard by oneself, but rather
    one dwells on the tone of the sounds of that dharani at the time oneself
    is reciting it.

    This rite of dwelling on the tone of the dharani involves both mental
    recitation and whispered recitation. The commentary (Toh. 2670) [on
    the Dhyanottara ] states that one cannot employ whispered recitation
    while restraining the prana-ayama. [the work] explains the sequence
    in outline this way: first one performs the whispered recitation; when,
    during that [recitation], the mind is not distracted, then one restrains
    the prana-ayama, performing the mental recitation.

    According to the commentary, in the first case (T, the first kind),
    there are three meditative objects: the god, the moon, and the dharani -
    garland; in the second case (T, the second kind), there are two medita¬
    tive objects: the moon and the dharani-garland; in the third case (IT),
    there is only one meditative object: the sound [of the dharani]. A single
    person must proceed by these three steps.

    One must complete the muttering with recitation ;

    Then permanently protect it by doing

    The muttering twenty-one times

    To the Mother and Master of the Family.

    The Mothers of the three Families are Locana, Pandara, and Mamakl.

    (c) Terminating acts to the four members of muttering

    The way in which one concludes the four members of muttering is to
    offer his roots of merit (kusala-mula) as a cause ( hetu ) for siddhi to the
    deity by means of the seal of the flask (kalasa-mudra ).

    One releases in reverse order to the se¬
    quence in which the six gods were contemplated.

    The meditative object in the sound of the dharani being recited is
    released by dwelling on the letters of the dharani ; those, in turn, by
    dwelling on only the moon. The moon is released by dwelling on just
    the body of the deity; that body in front, by thinking only of one’s own
    divine body.

    That divine body of Self Generation is released by thinking only of
    the syllables in its heart; that, in turn, by dwelling on the sound; the
    sound, in turn, by dwelling on the Knowledge Body of the god; that, in
    turn, by dwelling on the Dharma-kaya. In turn, unsupported by that,
    one should dwell on the Self Reality (*atma-tattva). That, in turn, is
    released by thinking of the Maturation Body ( vipaka-kaya ) which ap¬
    pears as an illusion, mirage, and so forth.

    Having summarized by steps those meditative objects, finally he is
    equipoised in voidness ( sunyata ). Thereupon, because he emerges in
    the fashion of an illusion, even at the time of giving up the watch, he
    should not release his hold on divine egoity. This procedure is equiv¬
    alent to the unification in the phase of the Anuttara.


    This has three sections, namely, exposition of the meditation ( dhyana )
    of dwelling in the flame, exposition of the meditation of dwelling in
    the sound, and exposition of the meditation granting freedom at the
    limit of the sound.

    a) Meditation of dwelling in the flame

    What type of person has this contemplation? The one who has come
    to the limit of the contemplation of the six gods has this contemplation.
    What is the method of contemplation? One contemplates himself as
    the deity; in his heart he contemplates a tongue of flame, like a bright
    and blazing butter lamp, and in it he discerns the Self Reality; and he
    contemplates the aspect of his mind’s reality as the tone of the sound of
    whatever dharani is to be uttered.

    The standard for having come to the limit is as follows: When one
    does not feel the pangs of hunger and thirst, although not partaking
    of external food or drink, and when one depends on internal warmth
    and beatitude, the samadhi is produced.

    (b) Meditation of dwelling in the sound

    One contemplates himself as the deity; in his heart, inside the moon-
    mandala, he contemplates a tiny body of the deity, similar to himself.
    In its heart, he imagines [a flame] like that of a burning butter lamp,
    and within [the flame], he contemplates the tone of the sounds of the
    dharani. This is not the same as the dwelling on the sounds of the syl¬
    lables in the phase attended with muttering. In that case, it was a dwelling
    on the sounds recited by oneself, whether the recitation be whispered
    or mental. In the present case, there is no recitation by oneself: one
    dwells on the tone of the sounds of the dharani within the flame, heard
    as a bystander. The situation in the phase of dwelling in the flame is
    also like the present case.

    And again the present case, one contemplates its aspect as the tone of
    the sounds of the dharani and its essence as the essence of one’s own mind.

    In the present case, one vividly imagines the body of the god, and
    so on, in sequence. Thereupon, one hold the mind solely on the sound,
    paying no attention to other objects, such as the body of the god. On
    the other hand, at the time of dwelling in the flame, one holds the mind
    on both fire and sound.

    The standard for having come to the limit is as follows: For example,
    when one goes to the limit of the contemplation of a god, the bodies,
    colors, hand symbols, and so on, of the chief god and of all his retinue
    become simultaneously more clearly visible than ever when seen without
    loss of definition before the [ordinary] eye. Likewise in the present case,
    when one reaches the limit, the sounds of the syllables of the dharani do
    not appear one after another, but arise in the mind simultaneously, more
    clearly and distinctly than when heard by the ear as audible sound.

    All those [i.e., (1) Meditation with muttering, and (a) and (b) of (2)
    Meditation without muttering] are yoga with signs ( sanimitta-yoga ).

    (c) Meditation granting freedom at the limit of the sound

    Buddhaguhya (Toh. 2670), Thu, 26b-7, describes the meditation this way: “The
    expression ‘granting freedom at the limit of the sound’ should be considered. The
    previously mentioned ‘limit of the sound’ is silence ( *nihsahda ); when one dwells
    solely on the sound of the mantra and then releases it, there is the limit of the sound.
    The meditation is the mindfulness that the mantra at the limit of the sound has granted
    the freedom abiding in the intrinsic nature of the Dharmakaya”

    In general, the samadhi in which Calming (samatha) and Higher Vision
    (vipasyana ) are combined together ( yuganaddha) is the backbone, so to
    say, of the path of both the Paramita-yana and Mantra-yana. Of those,
    in the Paramita-yana, having first developed Calming and having at¬
    tained in full measure its characteristics, one develops, on the basis of
    that, Higher Vision. Having attained in full measure the characteristics
    of the latter, one proceeds to Calming and Higher Vision combined
    together. However, in none of the four Tantra divisions is the method
    of accomplishing explained in terms of Calming, nor is that necessary,
    because by the contemplation itself of the yoga of the deity, one develops
    the complete characteristics of Calming.

    Thus, in the two higher Tantras fi.e., the Yoga and Anuttara] one
    accomplishes the complete characteristics of Calming when reaching
    the limit of the two yogas of the deity, the rough and the fine. The
    equivalent to that in the Kriya-Carya is the accomplishment [of those
    complete characteristics] when contemplating the six gods and when
    reaching the limit of the meditations of dwelling in the flame and dwelling
    in the sound.

    Even when one reaches the limit of the meditations with signs he is
    still without the basic antidote that eradicates the root of the ‘cycle of
    transmigration’ (samsara). For eradicating the root of samsara, one
    must have the yoga without signs (animitta-yoga). In the latter contem¬
    plation, one does not contemplate any conventional aspect, such as the
    body of a god, but contemplates according to the precepts through
    becoming skilled in the analyzing contemplation and the
    stoppage contemplation of voidness. If, through one’s own
    power of contemplation in that manner, one is able to attract in actuality
    the physical and mental cathartic, one accomplishes the complete char¬
    acteristics of Higher Vision.

    That is necessary for Maha Siddhis--such as life for eons--but not minor siddhis like assuaging illness or demons. When it manifests Prasrabdhi, the physical and mental cathartic, you are on the Path of Insight.

    When you get to the "limit" of the Six Gods meditation, you transit to Flame (ignoring bodily sensations except for Tummo), then Sound (using Concentration Hero), which is different from Muttering because you hear the Sound in the Flame, rather than producing it. You do this until every detail of the deity is vivid; this is Sanmitta, Yoga with Signs. The details may be "Rough"--his general shape and location--or "Fine", where the eyes, etc., are vivid.

    At the limit of that Sound is the practice of Yughanadda. The Flame and Sound Yogas here are Generation Stage (Utpatti).

    The Susiddhi explains that when one is in the phase of yoga of the
    deity, these are the omens that his muttering and contemplation are
    succeeding: trifling hunger, freedom from illness, outstanding awareness,
    great and strong nimbus ( tejas ), good dreams and prophetic dreams,
    rapture during the muttering, negligible fatigue, emission of fragrant
    odors, earnest application to acquiring merit, deep reverence toward
    the deity.

    The Dhyanottara explains the causes for departure of the deity to
    be these: lack of faith, slothfulness, discomfiture by hunger and thirst,
    distraction, downheartedness, doubts concerning the rite, disinclination
    toward the muttering and meditation, delight in idle talk, prohibited
    pursuits, demonic obsession, the dreaming of bad dreams, and so on;
    and explains the causes for approach of the deity to be these: the allaying
    of craving, hatred, pride, deceit, and so on, and the continuous dwelling
    of the mind in the muttering.

    Although "without images" is a subtle, refined state, according to Vairocana Abhisambodhi, it is not in isolation or at expense of "with images":


    There are two phases: Yoga with images; Yoga without images. The
    first of these is the yoga of the deity not governed by voidness; the
    second, the yoga of the deity governed by voidness. However, one
    should not contemplate only voidness, because one does not become a
    Buddha by merely contemplating voidness: it is explained that one does
    not accomplish both siddhis by means of the Yoga without images.
    Moreover, if someone enacts the contemplation of voidness prior to
    the contemplation of Yoga with images, with that alone he does not
    pass into Yoga without images.

    Vairocana's Yoga with images is much as the prior description with also:

    From the sphere of the void, one generates as before [a deity] or the
    Victor Sakyamuni from any of the four letters A, A, Am, Ah. This is
    the ‘Subjective Ground’. It is taught that in the heart of that [deity] he
    imagines an unblemished moon-disk like a mirror with two surfaces.
    He fixes [his attention] on it, contemplating his own body until he sees
    it as the body of the deity.

    [Two-sided mirror is described further along]

    (b) Yoga without images (animitta-yoga)

    This is the habituation in the decisive knowledge that concludes through
    higher cognition that all things (sarvadharmah) are void and not isolated,
    as regards accomplishment by intrinsic nature.

    The “signature” of that intense contemplation is the trans¬
    figuration of the body of the deity on the manas-face as though
    before the eyes, after reaching the limit of Yoga with images. And when
    he contemplates in the manner by which that brightness appears only
    on the buddhi-side without leaving it, and the body
    of the deity appears to be like the illusion of a void accumulation, he
    is able to attract the complete characteristics of higher vision {vipasy-
    ana). In the present Buddhist nomenclature, the first side of the buddhi is called the manas face; the reverse side of
    the buddhi , the buddhi-side. Hence, the limit of Yoga with images is still involved with
    the first side of the “mirror” but with eidetic or “realistic” imagery. Thereafter, Yoga
    without images is involved with the reverse, or inward-directed, side, on which one
    cognizes things as arising dream-like or as void.

    [So there is a small glimpse of Buddhi, which, with continuation, takes the whole person inside the mirror]

    If we understand Kriya-Charya, what does it mean to enter Yoga?

    Union {yoga, nal jor ) means union with the dharmadhatu, the interior objects of the mind {manas), according to Buddhist
    Abhidharma theory; the ‘source of natures’ ( dharmodaya ) and the Absolute ‘Object’ [(paramartha ) in Buddhist Tantra] by means of Knowledge {jnana).

    By "union", it would mean unwavering attention on this Dharmadhatu environment. The exercises with visualizations are "compressed", so to speak, into the Dharmodaya, which is like a lever or gate for Paramartha. Or, the whole Manas Face of the Moon Mirror has been restrained to reveal the Buddhi Face. When the main Kriya-Charya guidelines as above establish a good Samaya with a deity, then it can move to the Yoga Tantra practice, which as we see there will make a full Heruka that can do the technique necessary for Completion Stage by dissolving the Voids into Paramartha.

    When we begin to present Yoga Muttering deities, it has all this for feet.

    The way in which Yoga incorporates Atma Tattva and Devata Tattva is in its own peculiar sphere of Thirty-seven Point Enlightenment which is composed of Tattvas. According to Padmavajra’s Tantrarthavataravyakhyana (Toh. 2502), which we cite in abbreviation as Avatara-vyakh , there are thirty-seven categories (tattva), which we give in Sanskrit reconstruction.

    Four crowning practices from STTS:

    (1) hrdaya, (2) mudra, (3) mantra, (4) vidya,

    Four related inner experiences:

    (5) adhisthana, (6) abhiseka, (7) samadhi, (8) puja,

    The preceding instructions as related to a mandala deity:

    (9) atmatattva, (10) devatattva, (11) mandala,

    (12) prajna, (13) upaya,

    (14) hetu, (15) phala,

    (16) yoga, (17) atiyoga, (18) maha-yoga, (19) guhyayoga, (20) sarvayoga,

    Muttering followed by associated techniques:

    (21) japa, (22) homa, (23) vrata, (24) siddhi, (25) sadhana, (26) dhyana, (27) bodhicitta,

    Wisdoms which would require Six Families to explain:

    (28) sunyata-jnana, (29) adarsa-jnana, (30) samata-jnana, (31) pratyaveksana-jnana, (32) krtyanusthana-jnana, (33) visuddhadharmadhatu-jnana,

    Four Activities:

    (34) akarsana, (35) pravesana, (36) bandhana, (37) vasikara.

    We might say this takes a single deity and expands it to Six Families due to having Six Wisdoms, and so then Dakini Jala becomes very accurate to this.

    Yoga as a whole has summarized itself there, seeking familiarity and use of a broad but conceivable group. We can't really infect it with our opinion, but, it is generic, Devata and Sadhana could be "anything appropriate". And so we say some Taras come pretty fast. Compared to the above, she easily occupies Four Activities and Six Families, Prajna, and a Devata that could be from among these or elsewhere.

    The same author, Padmavajra, when commenting Highest Yoga Tantra (Dakarnava) is going to imply a seventh Family by describing a seventh Buddha Kaya.

    In such schemes as the one above, it is usually considered the "synthetic" aspect composed of the Six by Six or thirty-six others, and, here in Yoga, the final tattva equates to Avesa or Possession, which has to do with Luminous Mind, which is the real Sadhana, and when this is of a certain caliber, you have Heruka Yoga, which does the Completion Stage Highest Yoga Tantras, which we are saying do not work if you just pick them up and try them.

    It does if you start to fill in the operative details from a basic point and work up.

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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    Subtle Body

    As the previous post was perhaps the description of Pranayama in practice, it is rare to see how Buddhism handles the subtle body at the most basic. While it is correct that advanced tantras expand this simple version, until we have any need to, there is no reason to tamper with it.

    In a physiological sense, we are trying to balance the Winds in Three Channels through Four Chakras.

    As for the channels, in Hevajra Tantra:

    Three amongst the nadis are principal and they are called lalana, rasana and avadhut. The first one is characterised by Prajna and the second one by Upaya. The third one known as avadhut is suggestive of absolute non-duality which is conceived as beyond the reach of 'the taken' and 'the taker' (grahya-grahaka). The same idea is found also in the Herukatantra.

    Prajna and Upaya as Lalana-Rasana, Left and Right, Vowel and Consonants.

    So this is the primary image of what is being developed:

    There is a Triangle in the lower or Navel center, which is the Triangle of Inverted Stupa. The upper center has sometimes been called Jnana Cakra, but, more frequently, Mahasukha Chakra. Here are two descriptions of the cakras, firstly, that of Samputa:

    Now I will proclaim a single exegesis for all tantras. Due to his similarity to all sentient beings, (the
    Lord) had the far extended form of the three (Bodies).
    He is located among these: Brahm (and the Suras) along with (the Asuras).
    Precisely that is the perfection of insight having a form of conventional imagery.
    Precisely that which transcends objects of sense is located in the heart of all sentient beings.
    Therefore, whatever things are extensive, precisely that is Buddhahood concisely.

    That Buddhahood which was attained in an incalculable number of tens of millions of aeons,
    you will attain in this birth along with sublime bliss.

    Either as Vajradhara or as a Cakravartin, (you will attain) either the eight great siddhis or anything else you desire.
    Delusion, lust, hatred, pride and jealousy are the five defilements.

    By those very members with which sentient beings are bound, (sentient beings) conquer.
    By these (defilements), sentient beings are bound to births, circling in samsara by way of the six destinies.
    They are confused by the defilements and commit much sin.
    For the destruction and burning of these, however,
    there is the principle manifested by the Buddha who has seen the suffering and lack of a among
    those who have fallen into the ocean of samsara.
    By virtue of the manifestation of means and insight, the defilements become a matter of belief.
    Indeed, this is the result characterized as shining immaculate in the three realms.
    Whatever creatures are installed with whatever principle, they have the form of that.

    By reason of (the principle) which burns the fuel, one becomes a divine dancer who delights the Jinas.
    That which is characterized as pure consists of the (five) skandhas, the sense bases, and the realms.
    Just as an enemy being capable destroys someone, so that one being capable destroys the enemy. Delusion (is destroyed) by the purity of delusion; hatred (is destroyed) by the purity of hatred.
    Lust (is destroyed) by the purity of lust;
    great pride (is destroyed) by the purity of pride. Jealousy is destroyed by the purity of jealousy;
    the purity of each wields a thunderbolt.

    Given the pure form of these, the five defilements are equal.
    These are the five Families, the five knowledges, and
    the five Buddhas.

    From these are born the sentient beings of the three realms, (including) Vajragarbha and the Wrathful ones.
    Precisely this is an inner variety which one gains from the mouth of the guru.

    Whatever sentient beings lack gurus, they are the ones who do not acquire mantras and mudras.
    Whoever shines brightly and (praises) the Buddha here in Jambudvipa becomes the (n-ev-a.m) of pleasure in the middle of the pure triangle with the form of "e."

    When there is pleasure in the triangular mandala, it is called vajrarali.
    It is called the bhaga of the Lady," and also the source of dharmas."
    The lotus that occurs in the middle of that has a pericarp and eight petals.
    Therein the vowels and consonants commingle arranged in eight sections.

    One performs the set of ritual acts when the (deities) are the embodied with the form of mantras.
    Precisely these fifty letters belong to the Vedas.

    While the tantras and mantras have their external forms as treatises,
    their true forms are vajragarbha and there is nothing whatsoever which is different from these.
    Those fifty letters are the classes g, ka, gg, a,
    ta, sa; they are manifested as the same.

    They occur on the lotus in the vajrarali, on the petals known as in the eight (cardinal and intermediate) directions.
    At the filament in the middle of this, is known to be Supreme Lord.

    The letter "a" is the best of all letters; chief of its class, it is of great purpose.
    All mantras of the embodied ones rightly arise precisely from there.
    These are the members (called siddhis) a "sword," "eye ointment," "foot ointment," "little ball," "under-
    world," and "yaksa;" followed by (the actions) "wandering throughout the three worlds" and "mercurial destiny."
    All who have great power, having the desire, (can accom­plish these fifty) in their own homes.

    These classes themselves issue forth from the best vowel occurring in the middle of the eight classes,
    Whatever speech of persons is of a larger sort, it is scarcely understood,
    It is precisely for that reason that every such sort
    arises with the form of mantras.
    For all the embodied ones, the mystic sound is called "mantra."
    The dharmarali develops from the great place of various knots.

    Whatever mantra is not certain, it is established ac­cording to the magical power of siddhi.
    Verily, the supreme Lord of the classes with his mantra does not arise by intrinsic nature.
    He is called supreme who has the characteristics "arising from samputa."

    The syllable "e" is known as earth, karmamudra, and Locana.
    Possessing great compassion and great means, she ranges everywhere in her true form,
    She is located in the nirmana-cakra, at the navel, in a lotus of sixty-four {petals).

    The syllable "va " is known as water, dharma-mudra, and Mamaki.
    She has the characteristic nature of love and fervent aspiration and is the female deity raised in the Vajra Family.
    She is located in the dharma-cakra, at the heart, in a good lotus of eight petals.

    The syllable is called fire, maha-mudra, and Pandara.
    By the union of delight and power, she is the female deity raised in the Padma Family.
    She is located in the sambhoga-cakra, at the throat,
    in a lotus of sixteen petals.

    The syllable "E" has the nature of wind and is the destroyer of all defilements.
    It is the mahasamaya-mudra and the female deity raised in the Karma Family.
    By the union of equanimity and knowledge, she is Tara
    who carries one across the cyclical flow.
    She is located in the cakra at the head called maha­ sukha, in a lotus of thirty-two petals.

    So, i. e., Four Chakras issuing from Locana--Nirmana Chakra, which then has a type of blissful secret appendage, Arali.

    Alex Wayman explains the Four Chakras:

    In the Heruka-tantra (thirty-first patala) we find that in the
    Mahasukha-cakra, situated in the head, there is a lotus
    of four petals representing the four noble truths or the
    four categories ( catuskoti ); it is pure, of the nature of
    a circle of enlightenment ( bodhi-mandala ) as the re-
    ceptacle ( adhara ) and the seed (bija) of all ; outside is
    a lotus of thirty-two petals, and inside it is the letter
    “ha” in the downward way which is of the nature of
    the Bodhicitta and the fifteen digits of the moon. In-
    side is the Yogini of sixteen kalas or digits of the moon,
    carrying intense bliss with her. By the two sides are
    lalana and rasana of the nature of ali and kali ; and the
    supreme goddess herself is of the nature of Sahaja-bliss
    and non-duality. The description seems to be rather
    significant. The sixteen kalas of the Bodhicitta, doubled
    in day and night seem to be represented by the thirty-
    two petals of the lotus in the head ; and lalana and ra-
    sana by the two sides of the Paramesvari (referring to
    Avadhutika) of the nature of ali and kali are but the
    two nerves (corresponding to the Ida and Pihgala of
    the Hindu texts) by the two sides of Avadhutika,
    who is of the nature of Sahaja-bliss and non-duality.

    Next in the neck is the Sambhoga-cakra with sixteen
    petals of red colour, within it is the syllable “hum”;
    above it nectar flows down incessantly through a

    In the heart is the Dharma-cakra with eight
    petals ; it is a visva-padma which is the double lotus,
    one facing upwards and the other facing downwards ;
    within it is the syllable “ hum ” downwards ; a little
    above there is a white lotus, representing the universe
    (brahmanda-sadrsa-karam) ; within that is pure con-
    sciousness ( vijnanam ) which is ever manifest, all-per-
    vading ; it is the receptacle of all, and the source of all
    self-produced knowledge ( svayambhu-jnana-dharam ),
    it is the great Lord ( paramesvara ).'

    In the navel region is a lotus of sixty-four petals of blue colour ;
    within that is the syllable “ am ” like a dazzling pearl.
    Slightly below is the kanda which is the receptacle of
    all the nerves numbering seventy-two thousand in all.
    From this kanda rise the nerve lalana of the nature
    of Prajna and rasana of the nature of Upava ; and in
    the middle is the Goddess in the form of the universe,
    represented by the syllable “ am ”, she is of the nature
    of the four ‘ bodies ’ and grants all perfection and
    supreme bliss .

    In the Srl-samputa we find that the four Cakras
    are associated with the four Mudras, viz., Karma-
    mudra, Dharma-mudra, Maha-rnudra and Samaya-
    mudra, which are again associated with the goddesses
    Locana, Mamaki, Pandara and Tara respectively who
    again in their turn are the presiding goddesses over
    the elements (confused with the skandhas, as we have
    already seen) of earth, water, fire and air ; these are
    again represented by the syllables “ e, vara, ma and ya ”
    ( Cf . evam maya srutam etc.). Thus the Nirmana-
    cakra in the navel region stands for the element of
    earth represented by the syllable “ e ” and presided
    over by the goddess Locana, who is associated with the
    Karma-mudra. In this way the elements with their
    syllabic symbols and presiding deities and the associ-
    ated Mudras are located in the other three Cakras.

    Again goddess Locana in the Nirmana-cakra represents universal compassion
    (karuna), Mamaki in the Sambhoga-cakra represents
    universal brotherhood (maitri) and concentration
    ( pranidhi ), Pandara represents self-contentment
    ( mudita ) and Tara represents absolute indifference
    (upeksa). These descriptions of the Cakras are also
    confirmed by the Hevajra-tantra, and the Hevajra-
    tantra reminds us in this connection that as the Cakras
    are four in number, all the tattvas are four. Thus four
    are the moments, viz,, vicitra, vipaka, vimarda and
    vilaksana ; four are the angas (stages in the methods
    of the Sadhana), viz., seva, upa-seva, sadhana and
    maha-sadhana, four are the noble truths ( drya-satya ),
    viz., sorrow, its cause, its suppression and the way of
    suppressing it ; four are the tattvas, viz., the tattva of
    the self ( atma-tattva ), the tattva of the Mantras
    (mantra-tattva), the tattva of the gods ( devata-tattva )
    and the tattva of knowledge (jnana- tattva) ; four are
    the anandas (states of bliss), viz., ananda, parama-
    nanda, virama-nanda, and sahaja-nanda...

    In the Buddhist Tantras we find that the nerve
    Lalana or the Ali starts from the neck and enters the
    navel region from the left side, and from the navel
    again starts the Rasana or the Kali and enters the
    neck from the right. Within these two and passing
    through the lotus in the heart ( hrt-saroruha-madhya -
    ga) is the Avadhuti, through which flows the Bodhi-
    citta, and this Avadhutika gives the Sahaja-bliss, and it
    itself is often described as the Sahaja-bliss. The most
    important thing is that the nerves in the left and the
    right have been identified with Sunyata and Karuna
    or Prajna and Upaya, the two cardinal principles of;
    Mahayana Buddhism ; and the Avadhuti, as their
    commingling, is the Bodhicitta or the goddess Nairat-
    ma or the Sahaja-damsel. We have discussed at
    length the question how these nerves Lalana and
    Rasana are identified or associated with Sunyata and
    Karuna, Prajna and Upaya, Ali and Kali, etc. In the
    Ekalla-vira-canda-maha-rosana-tantra we find that the
    Lady (the female counter-part of Candarosana) asks
    the Lord (Candarosana) how the bliss produced
    through Prajna and Upaya can be enjoyed in the body.
    In reply the Lord says that there is the nerve in the
    left, named Lalana which is of the nature of Prajna
    and in the right is the nerve Rasana of the nature of
    Upaya. Through the commingling of these two
    nerves in the middle nerve the bliss of Prajnopaya is
    to be realised. We should also notice that these three
    nerves Lalana, Rasana and Avadhuti have also been
    identified with the three Kayas, viz., Sambhoga,
    Nirmana and Dharma. Again, we have seen that the
    Lalana is said to carry the seed and Rasana the ovum
    and Avadhuti to carry Bodhicitta (which is a mixture
    of the seed and the ovum). Again Prajna and Upaya
    mean subjectivity and objectivity or the grahaka and
    the grahya, and so these two nerves are also called

    [When we see Ali Kali it is Forty-nine and hence the Winds or Maruts. Marutgana is bound by Raudra Krama. The following talks about binding the Winds.]

    prana has again been said to be the Rahu and
    the apana to be the ‘fire of time* ( kalagni )

    The third part of Yoga is pranayama, which
    means the control and arrest of the vital wind ( prana -
    vayu). This prana-vayu is of the nature of the five
    elements ( panca-bhuta ) as well as the five Buddhas.
    The wind that flows through the left nostril (which is
    lalana) represents the principle of the five skandhas
    (which are identified with the panca-bhutas) and the
    wind flowing through the right nostril (which is
    rasana) represents the principle of the five Buddhas.
    These two courses of the vital wind must be united and
    made into a subtle body, as it were, and made flow
    through the middle nerve passing through the lotuses
    in the navel, heart, neck and the forehead. Then this
    vital wind must be made steady in the lotus between
    the two eye-brows. This is what is meant by

    This process of pranayama is regarded as very
    important in the esoteric Yoga of the Buddhists and
    is variously described in different texts. We have seen
    before that in the Panca-krama the vital wind has been
    described as the vehicle ( vahana ) for our defiled nature
    ( prakrti ) and this vayu is described as the root of
    all the principles of defilement and as such the root-
    cause of the samsara or the cycle of birth and death.
    In the Vajra-japa-krama of the Panca-krama we find
    that mantra-tattva is nothing but the vayu-tattva
    (the science of the vital wind). This vayu-tattva com-
    prises within it the five tattvas (which when combined
    together constitutes the ultimate truth); these are the
    tattvas of the five Dhyani-Buddhas and, therefore, of
    the five skandhas. It is said in the text Vajra-mala,
    that from the air of the right nostril issues forth a
    lustre of red colour; it is the circle of fire and Padma-
    natha is the presiding deity here; from the left issues
    forth the lustre of deep green colour in an aerial circle
    and Karma-natha is the deity here ; the lustre issuing
    forth from both the nostrils is of yellow colour and it
    is said to be the circle of Indra and presided over by
    Ratna-natha. The steady wind within, of the colour
    of the white Kunda flower, or the moon, is the circle
    of Varuna, prescribed over by Vajra-natha, and the wind
    pervading the whole physical system and prompting
    all the active tendencies is of the nature of Vairocana.'
    These five kinds of lustre of the nature of the five
    Buddhas are to be thought of in the region between
    the two brows, i.e., at the starting point of the nose
    ( nasagra ) and they are to be thought of united into
    the form of a mustard seed ( sarsapa ); in this mustard
    seed, however, the whole universe of the static and the
    dynamic should be meditated on, — it is also to be
    thought of as the place of all wisdom — of all the
    mysteries of knowledge . This mustard seed, however,
    represents the Lord himself of the nature of the five
    wisdoms.' This small figure of the form of the mustard
    seed representing the five kinds of winds of the nature
    of the five elements and the five kinds of wisdom, is
    meditated on in the region of nasagra and itself is called
    pranayama . In many places of the Sri-Samaja we
    find mention of this theory of the five kinds of winds of
    the nature of the five elements and the five jnanas,
    which are to be meditated on in the region between the
    brows in the form of the mustard seed.

    So, Buddhist Subtle Yoga relies on Nirmana Chakra first. And so our Pranayama exercise called Inverted Stupa is doing the same thing, which is why the Triangles correspond. It is a "halfway point" and is all that is used in some sadhanas. Finishing the entire Inverted Stupa glyph is about like having accomplished all of Generation Stage.

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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    Daaang brother this is a lot of stuff ... but looks like its up my alley ... will try to get back to read through it all.

    When you are one step ahead of the crowd, you are a genius.
    Two steps ahead, and you are deemed a crackpot.

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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    Bindu Nada of The Inverted Stupa, Om Ah Hum, Prajnaparamita Muttering and relation of practices to Six Yogas

    Here is a combination of subjective teachings with yoga practice.

    We are going to look at two of the easiest deities, Sarasvati and Prajnaparamita, as they are almost identical, and both related to Manjushri. It is not an "actual sadhana", but a switching of "block outline parts", which is just greetings and praise. This is what we would describe as more of a Noumenal gate to the subtle body, as opposed to rapidly "activating" it.

    In some versions of twenty-one Taras, the second or Sarasvati is simply already given as Vajra Sarasvati, doing varada and holding a lotus upon which is a mirror with a radiant Hrim syllable. Her personal mantra becomes Om Tare Tuttare Ture Prajna Hrim Hrim Svaha. The basic term hri, "to blush", is of Vedic origin and connotes feminine modesty, and may be applied to any female deity. Secondarily to a male god if he is with a Shakti, Prajna, or other female attendant.

    In Smile of Sun and Moon, an Atisha system commentary, for Tara two, the brilliant light of Sarasvati becomes four correct analytical knowledges. We know these as Pratisamvit gatekeepers, but here they are called meaning, phenomena, definitive words, and courageous eloquence. Then, the realization of white bodhicitta expressed by her is called the face of White Varahi. It should be flowing from the head to the jewel and back. Someday, sure, but you have to have a starting point.

    With seed syllables, something like Hri is a "root", with different chanting versions such as Hrih and Hrim.

    According to East Wind Holistic Healing, "HRIH is the heart's seed syllable; it encapsulates the compassionate activity of the bodhisattva. In the HRIH we dedicate the totality of our transformed personality (which has become the Vajrakaya) to the service of Amitabha. This is the realization of the Bodhisattva ideal, symbolized in the figure of Avalokiteshvara. The seed-syllable HRIH is not only the seal of Amitabha, just as HUNG is the seal of Vajrasattva, Aksobhya, and the Medicine Buddha—it also has a special meaning for the realization of the Bodhisattva way. HRIH is the inner voice, the moral law within us, the voice of the conscience, of inner knowledge—not the intellectual, but the intuitive, spontaneous knowledge—due to which we do the right thing for the sake of the good and not for the sake of any advantage.

    As a sound-symbol, HRIH means far more than hinted at by its philological associations. Not only does it possess the warmth of the sun, as well as the em
    otional principle of goodness, compassion, and sympathy, but it also holds the power of illumination, the quality of making things visible, the faculty of perception, of direct vision. HRIH is a mantric solar symbol, a luminous, elevating, upwards moving sound composed of the pranic aspirate (H), the fiery R (RAM is the seed-syllable of the element "fire") and the high "i" sound, which expresses upward movement and intensity, and the final sigh-like “h,” with which we release all tension and obstacles."

    In Lakshmi Tantra, she explains that she (herself as Tara) has Five Forms, and so it is acceptable to spell and pronounce the syllable as Hrih, Hrim, and other variations. Four of the ways will fulfill individual desires; emancipation is of the fifth mode, Hrimmm, or Hri ending with pradhana, bindu, and nada, which gives it the prolonged sound of pranava or Om.

    According to Pithambara, "Pranvam, Maya, Vadhu, Koorch and Astra (Aum, Hreem, Streem, Hoom, Phat) constitutes Shri Tara Bhagawati five lettered Maha Vidya.

    So the Maya syllable, Hrim, is a slight alteration to Hrih, or vice-versa. Plain Hri is the root of Hridaya or Heart.

    White Prajnaparamita is a single-follower Sherab who mantricly conjoins Sarasvati by sharing this Picu or Cotton formula:

    oṃ picu picu prajñāvarddhani jvala jvala medhāvarddhani dhiri dhiri buddhivarddhani svāhā

    It is with Prajnaparamita 154 which appears to be a beginning of Suksma or subtle forms:

    prajñāpāramitāṃ atisūkṣmāmuktarūpāṃ

    It also mentions an Utpatti mantra, linked to the Nispanna or Completion Stage version found in her Paramartha explanation:

    tatra utpattipakṣe mantraḥ oṃ praṃ svāhā, niṣpannapakṣe mantro 'stīti paramārthakramaḥ
    prajñāpāramitāyogopadeśalabdhaḥ /

    This means she has a syllable, Pram, valid for Generation Stage.

    This syllable also applies to 151; 155 adds Emptiness Mantra and Four Activities. With respect to Emptiness Mantra, these tantric forms impel you to Void Gnosis, to which, Mrtyuvacana is perhaps a Heroine for explaining it as Parasunya. She assigns Parasunya to Emptiness Mantra, which is the main workhorse in these sadhanas, used around fifty times. Usually you are just told to use it during a process. Only a few spots hint any more "about" Emptiness Mantra: Vajra Tara adds Nisprapanca to it, right before referring to Prajnaparamita. Marici uses it for Sunyata Samadhi. With Kurukulla it is Citta Adhistitha. Then White Kurukulla uses it for the Prabhasvara itself. Pratisara explains it as Nirvikalpa. Vajravarahi makes it Ahamkara--so your Ego has been replaced by her Divine Ego.

    155 explains reciting the Picu mantra:

    tatrāyaṃ japavidhiḥ / hṛdbījākṣaramadhyād
    bahir devīmukhavivareṇa niḥsṛtāni nābhimaṇḍalena
    tatraivānupravṣṭāni sphaṭikākṣamālākārāṇi śuklāni
    mantrākṣarāṇi sphuraṇam upasaṃhṛtya devatāhaṅkāreṇa japet /

    Bhattacharya only recognizes one White Prajnaparamita:

    The worshipper should meditate on the navel the form of Sitaprajnaparamita, as two-armed, one-faced, white in colour, and beautiful in appearance, with half curly hair, as sitting on the white lotus, carrying in her right hand the
    red lotus, and the Prajnaparamita Book in her left. She sits in the Vajraparyanka attitude, and is decked in all sorts of ornaments. She originates from the knowledge of the letter *Am' and releases immense delight... This goddess is
    stamped with the image of Aksobhya (on the crown)."

    He is referring to 151 and Am is linked to Jnana:

    aṃkārajñānasambhūtāṃ paramānandakāriṇīm //

    Param Ananda is, rather, an advanced Bliss, I think it is the Fourth Joy.

    White Prajnaparamita is an outer practice of Vajra Panjara Tantra.

    In her heart is a lotus with a duplicate wisdom being in whom is a lotus with a concentration being (Concentration Hero), the om.

    And so we have information from the tantras that there are Four Chakras, but, we are not doing that yet, because we haven't gotten anywhere close to Yidams or anything near that part of the process. And so the basic Muttering only uses Three Places. These are related to Three Syllables, the Three Jewels, and the Three Vajras of Body, Speech, and Mind. And then the Three Syllables, Om Ah Hum, are used to balance the Three Channels.

    The Three Places are White, Red, and Blue versions of the syllables, this being the classical Sanskrit script:

    OM – Body (Kaya Vajra): Located at the center of the forehead, representing embodied awareness, wholesome response and skillful action. White light radiates with the syllable “OM” at the center.

    AH – Speech (Vach Vajra): Located at the base of the throat, representing wisdom, expressing truth, wholesome “self-talk,” thinking and communication, as well as cultivating silence. Red light radiates with the syllable “AH” at the center.

    HUM – Mind (Citta Vajra): Located at the heart center, representing compassion, unity, loving intention, and the aspiration to alleviate one’s own and others’ suffering. Blue light radiates with the syllable “HUM” at the center. All mantras are contained in these syllables, as all Buddhas are in the Three Vajras.

    Hum is Vajra Family of the Heart, Prajnaparamita, the Yoshid or Vajra Ladies, the Indestructible Drop.

    Om by itself in a four phase manner, and it should be understood that the breath is the same: inhale, retention, exhale, rest. And so as we had A U M + silence, it is now Om Ah Hum + silence. So the syllables can be recited mentally with the four phases of a slow breath. Inhale Om, hold Ah, exhale Hum.

    According to House of the Sun, "Ah is the symbol of the primal state of the spirit. It is the female aspect, the mother fully expressed in divine wisdom. It is also the unborn, a state of being that is without thought. It is the essential state of Emptiness. Hum is the root vibration, the smallest, undividable unity of sound as reflection of the essential nature of Kundalini-Shakti. Hum is the descent from universality (Om) into the human heart.

    When pronouncing or chanting Om ah Hum one visualizes a flow between the words and what the words stand for. When pronouncing Om one imagines that it stands for the universal sound, the symbolic word for the infinite, the perfect, the eternal. It fills the mind with the idea of eternal perfection. Om is like the opening of our arms to embrace all that lives and exists. It brings peace, bliss, clarity, firmness, courage, stability and strength. Om descends from the Crown chakra to the heart chakra in order to be transformed into vibrant life. Ah is the expression of wonder and direct awareness. It is a point of stillness, of emptiness. Ah brings energy, openness, expansion and empowerment. Hum is the universality (Om) brought into the heart, it is the infinite in the finite, the eternal in the temporal. The long 'u' sound in Hum expresses a downward movement to accentuate this descent. The 'h' in Hum is the sound of the breath (prana) and 'm' hints at a state beyond duality. Hum is brings expansiveness, infinity, essence and oneness into the human being."

    Because it is so fundamental, it would probably be best to draw one's own with pens or something. I cannot find a Sanskrit colored version. This is Siddham style calligraphy where the half-open bindus or points indicate that the syllables have what Tibetans call a "long, drawn-out" sound:

    Colored Tibetan script:

    In one sense, they may be called Three Vajras. Bring attention to the location of each syllable in your body. Hold the intention of the syllable in your mind as you inhale a full breath. Chant the syllable in a long slow tone on the outbreath. As you chant, visualize yourself radiating light from each location with the syllable at its center. OM – Body (Kaya Vajra): Located at the center of the forehead, representing embodied awareness, wholesome response and skillful action. White light radiates with the syllable “OM” at the center. AH – Speech (Vach Vajra): Located at the base of the throat, representing wisdom, expressing truth, wholesome “self-talk,” thinking and communication, as well as cultivating silence. Red light radiates with the syllable “AH” at the center. HUM – Mind (Citta Vajra): Located at the heart center, representing compassion, unity, loving intention, and the aspiration to alleviate one’s own and others’ suffering. Blue light radiates with the syllable “HUM” at the center. All mantras are contained in these syllables, as all Buddhas are in the Three Vajras.

    These are also in the C. A. Muses text, Chapter Two in Part Two.

    And so when we get to the "right moment" then Vajra Muttering will go Om Ah Hum. At first it will have this lateral or stacked representation of the Three Places while you are speaking it. Eventually, as you go to Whisper it and then do it Mentally, you want to try to feel any winds or the Three Channels and if you can, the, the mantra also opens and balances this sensation.

    Om and Hum both show Bindu Nada, a mark above them which is like a Crescent with a Flame. This is like the "point" associated with Sound. And so when you get as deep into Voidness as you can, you can let this point arise, and transform it into the seed syllable for the deity.

    I cannot recall if this is from Guhyasamaja, but a similar structure referring to the Three Syllables relates to a Homa version.

    Generating the fire into the deity includes:

    a) the limb of nearing, which is generating the samaya being.
    b) the limb of nearing the attainment, which is blessing the three places of body, speech and mind.
    c) the limb of attainment, which is the entering of the transcendental wisdom.
    d) the limb of great attainment, which is initiating and sealing with the owner of the race, which means with one of the Dhyani Buddhas.

    In some cases, nearing may be described at the deity's syllable melting into a vajra which then becomes the deity, the first purifies the subtle, and the second, the gross body.

    Nearing the attainment is meditation on Om Ah Hum in the Three Places. On (your) Hum, a white moon disc with a deity's particular symbol is placed., which can emit purifying nectar.

    The attainment is that the deity's red heart rays become hooks and grab its transcendental form from the natural Abode along with the Dhyani Buddhas. One then uses Jah Hum Vam Hoh. Jah hooks it to the crown; Hum causes it to merge; Vam chains it, makes it inseparable; and Hoh cultivates great bliss and wisdom.

    Great attainment initiates and seals the crown, which means the Dhyanis initiate the wisdom being. Prajnas pour nectar on the deity and its sire arises from the residue coming out of the crown.

    So this will use two deities. You should start a Guru Yoga, and ask for their presentation and use Purity mantra to reset a new view. Then from the Bindu and Hrim will come Sarasvati with a Hrim Mirror, who has the mantric equivalency to Prajnaparamita. Sarasvati can directly arise from the syllable, and at her heart is a red utpala (lotus) with a white Om. Sarasvati will revert back into this Om syllable, which will grow a new white lotus to start the next part.

    Then from Pram will come Prajnaparamita and we will Mutter her Three Places and Three Channels. I am not sure I have an image of Pram, but she also responds to it mantricly. All of the short mantras normally mean you repeat them, three, five, seven, or some greater number of times.

    Muttering means we are going to chant the Three Syllables over and over with the intent and visualization as described, and while we are doing this, it affects Prajnaparamita, and we want to go to a climax until her Three Lights sunburst and she melts through them into our Three Places, until residing in the Heart. Then we are going to reverse the layers we opened, and go back to Guru and thank him for the assistance and dedicate whatever benefits may arise from our practice to the welfare of all sentient beings.

    Purify with Om svabhavah shudda sarva dharma svabhavah shuddoh, 'ham.

    Stay in repose and let a Bindu Nada arise.

    Hrim is the Maya Syllable, used in Bhuvaneshvari's Yantra:

    Om Tare Tuttare Ture Prajna Hrim Hrim Svaha

    The Sweet Sound of Perfect Joy: In Praise of the Goddess Sarasvatī

    by Jamyang Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö

    ཧྲཱིཾཿ ཚངས་པའི་ཡིད་ཀྱི་སྲས་མོ་ནི། །

    hring tsangpé yi kyi semo ni

    Hrīṃ! Daughter of the mind of Brahmā

    རོལ་པའི་མཚོ་ཆེན་ལས་བྱུང་བ། །

    rolpé tso chen lé jungwa

    Arisen from the great lake of enjoyment,

    ཟླ་ལྟར་དཀར་བའི་ཞལ་མངའ་མ། །

    da tar karwé shyal nga ma

    With your face as pure and white as the moon—

    དབྱངས་ཅན་ལྷ་མོར་ཕྱག་འཚལ་བསྟོད། །

    yangchen lhamor chaktsal tö

    Goddess Sarasvatī, to you I pay homage!

    རིག་བྱེད་གསང་ཚིག་འཛད་མེད་གཏེར། །

    rikjé sang tsik dzemé ter

    Unending treasury of the secret words of the Vedas,

    དེ་བཞིན་གཤེགས་གསུང་ཆོས་ཕུང་ཆེ། །

    deshyin shek sung chö pung ché

    And the vast collection of the buddhas’ Dharma,

    འཆི་མེད་ལམ་ཡང་མཐར་ཁྱབ་བྱེད། །

    chimé lam yang tar khyabjé

    Reaching to the end of the path of deathlessness—

    དབྱངས་ཀྱི་དཔལ་མོར་གུས་པས་བསྟོད། །

    yang kyi palmor güpé tö

    Glorious Lady of Melodies, to you I bow in devotion!

    ཏམྦུ་ར་ལ་འཁྱུད་བྱས་ཏེ། །

    tambura la khyü jé té

    Clasping a ‘tambura’ lute in your hands,

    སོར་རྩེས་དལ་གྱིས་བསྒྲེངས་པ་ཡིས། །

    sor tsé dal gyi drengpa yi

    And gently playing it with the tips of your fingers.

    འཇིག་རྟེན་འདས་དང་མ་འདས་ཀུན། །

    jikten dé dang ma dé kün

    To you who captivate the minds of all, both beyond

    ཡིད་ཀྱི་བརྟན་པ་འཕྲོག་ལ་འདུད། །

    yi kyi tenpa trok la dü

    And still within this worldly realm, I bow!

    ངེས་དོན་ཤེས་རབ་ཕ་རོལ་ཕྱིན། །

    ngedön sherab parol chin

    In reality you are the Perfection of Wisdom herself,

    རྣམ་པ་ལྷ་མོའི་གཟུགས་སུ་སྒྱུར། །

    nampa lhamö zuk su gyur

    Yet you appear in the form of a goddess,

    ངོ་མཚར་སྒྱུ་འཕྲུལ་བསམ་མི་ཁྱབ། །

    ngotsar gyutrul sam mikhyab

    A wondrous and inconceivable manifestation,

    ས་བཅུའི་དབང་ཕྱུག་ཆེན་མོར་འདུད། །

    sa chü wangchuk chenmor dü

    Great Lady who has mastered the ten bhūmis, to you I bow!

    དེ་བཞིན་གཤེགས་ཀུན་རྗེས་ཆགས་ཀྱིས། །

    deshyin shek kün jé chak kyi

    To all the buddhas who regard you with their love,

    ཡེ་ཤེས་སྤྱན་གྱི་ཟུར་མདའ་གཡོ། །

    yeshe chen gyi zur da yo

    And glance at you with their eyes of wisdom,

    སྙོམས་འཇུག་བདེ་ཆེན་མཆོད་སྤྲིན་བསྟོབས། །

    nyom juk dechen chötrin tob

    You offer great cloud-like gifts of blissful union,

    དགྱེས་ཡུམ་ཆེན་མོར་གུས་པས་འདུད། །

    gyé yum chenmor güpé dü

    To you, the great mother of joy, respectfully I bow!

    བློ་ལྡན་གང་གི་མགྲིན་སྙིང་ལ། །

    loden gang gi drin nying la

    As you enter the throats and hearts of the intelligent,

    ཞུགས་པ་དེ་ཡི་མོད་ཉིད་དུ། །

    shyukpa dé yi mö nyi du

    In that very instant, they become transformed,

    སྨྲ་བའི་དབང་ཕྱུག་ཆེན་པོར་བསྒྱུར། །

    mawé wangchuk chenpor gyur

    And are made powerful masters of speech—

    བློ་གྲོས་མཆོག་སྩོལ་མ་ལ་བསྟོད། །

    lodrö chok tsol ma la tö

    To you, bestower of supreme intelligence, I offer praise!

    དེ་ལྟར་བསྟོད་པའི་བྱིན་རླབས་ཀྱིས། །

    detar töpé jinlab kyi

    Through the blessings of praising you in this way,

    བདག་ཡིད་དད་པའི་འོ་མཚོ་རུ། །

    dak yi depé o tso ru

    May you enter the milky lake of my devoted mind,

    བཞུགས་ནས་མཁྱེན་གཉིས་ཡེ་ཤེས་ཀྱི། །

    shyuk né khyen nyi yeshe kyi

    And grant me the brilliant light of wisdom,

    སྣང་བ་ཆེན་པོ་སྩལ་དུ་གསོལ། །

    nangwa chenpo tsal du sol

    Complete with the twofold knowledge, I pray!

    ཨོཾ་པི་ཙུ་པི་ཙུ་པྲ་ཛྙཱ་ཝཱརྡྷ་ནི། ཛྭ་ལ་ཛྭ་ལ་མེ་དྷི་ཝཱརྡྷ་ནི། དྷི་རི་དྷི་རི་བུདྡྷི་ཝརྡྷ་ནི་སྭཱ་ཧཱ།

    om pitsu pitsu prajna vardhani dzala dzala medhi vardhani dhiri dhiri buddhi vardhani soha

    Oṃ picu picu prajñā vardhani jvala jvala medhivardhani dhiri dhiri buddhi vardhani svāhā

    Sarasvati disappears into the Om at her heart, from which grows a lotus, which opens holding a moon disk supporting White Prajnaparamita with Om, Ah, Hum in her Three Places, having her texts on Red and White Lotuses, while invoking her:

    Om namo Bhagavatyai Arya Prajnaparamitayai

    oṃ praṃ svāhā

    oṃ picu picu prajñāvarddhani jvala jvala medhāvarddhani dhiri dhiri buddhivarddhani svāhā /

    At this point visualize white light emanating from an Om syllable on the forehead of the Great Mother and striking your forehead (third eye chakra). This purifies all physical and karmic obstructions that you have created and Prajnaparamita empowers the body.

    Repeat her mantra:

    Now visualize a red syllable AH at the throat chakra of the Great Mother. It emits red light that strikes your throat chakra and purifies all negative obstructions created with your speech. Imagine that you have received the speech empowerment of Prajnaparamita.

    Repeat her mantra:

    From the blue seed syllable HUM at the heart chakra of the Great Mother there ensues blue light that strikes your own heart chakra and purifies all obstructive forces created by your mind. Think that you have received the mind empowerment of Prajnaparamita.

    Repeat her mantra:

    [Now that everything is charged, begin Muttering Om Ah Hum, and as we practice, it is this phase we want to enlarge]

    Prajnaparamita as Wisdom Heart Flame

    Finally, visualize the Great Mother descending into your heart chakra and residing there in wisdom flame. Now your body, speech, and mind as inseparable from the body, speech and mind of Prajnaparamita.

    Repeat her full mantra:


    Reduce this with Purity Mantra, return to the Guru and conclude the practice.

    Her mantra is shared with Sarasvati, who becomes Vajrasarasvati, related to Krsna Yamari Tantra. This Prajnaparamita form does not do much else other than indicate Completion Stage on her Gold form. However, as the Mother of Paramitas, it makes her central to a system more or less of her own, corresponding to the Bodhisattva Bhumis, the Grounds or Stages of the Bodhisattva Path.

    This basic version resembles IWS 190 who is White, has concentration om, prajnavardhani mantra, crowned with Amitabha. (105 in older Rinjung Gyatsa which adds om ah hum in her three places).

    Examples of slight tweaks to her include:

    Sadhanamala 157 Yellow Dhih-arisen Two Arm form uses Emptiness Mantra and Om Ah Hum, either is or becomes yellow herself.

    IWS 452 White form uses white om heart syllable to invite blue hum. Holds lotus and orange text.

    Concerning the mantra and also the strange name "Picuva Marici", it shares the following background:

    Picu, "cotton", Picuvaktra "cotton mouth" in Satsahasra Samhita is the Seventh or downwards mouth of Shiva. Here Devi resides as Guhyashakti, here the worlds originate from Jagadyoni. They took the normal five mouths representing five pranas and nadis, added a sixth avyakta unmanifest (Vyomaka, "sky"), and the last, Patala, "serves the purpose of emanation". Picuyoni, Muladhara chakra. They sneak it in and not until chapter 47 is this made clear. So Kubjika or Malini tries to esoterically give seven principles to Shiva, in a way maintaining the first five are the primordial bundle of almost any organism, and the sixth and seventh are subtle additions. Because this source is all about mantra, here we see pretty much the same sevenfold idea related to mantra born yoginis.

    The Seventh Mouth is Nadir because it cannot be reached by light.

    Pasupatas and Tantras gives it as anandacakra or circle of bliss from which flows visarga sakti, energy of emission, kundalini, as Kubjika. Broadly speaking, Adi Shakti is in the highest, Guhyashakti in the lowest, of these mouths, and their union is the goal.

    Volume II of Sadhanamala calls the Picu verse a mantra of Vajravina Sarasvati. They say it was delivered by Buddha. It brings the cleverness of a Kavya or poet. Also, "In the beginning there is Cakradhara, who is followed by two Picus..." Cakradhara is a special Vairocana emanation which they associated to a symbol or perhaps Om at the start; I am not sure what this otherwise means.

    Structure of "outer practices" compared to "inner practices"

    There is a common concept in Buddhism, Mindfulness, which has a basket of synonyms. At first, this seemed to water it down, but, with review, it makes a type of "ladder" from the original Pali language, to the schemes in the tantras.

    Ekagatta or One-pointedness is universal, among the seven permanent Cetasikas. In addition to this, there are over forty more mental conditions, which may or may not arise. Ekagatta also has the meaning of "mindfulness" which is almost too common and has too many synonyms. In general use, it is almost bewildering. In Mahayana and Sanskrit, there is a fairly specific progression of translations of "mindfulness", such as Sati, Smrti, and Samadhi, which again is a type of outer-to-inner transition. Ekagatta has the ability to be dragged through a blender of distortions, or, it can relax itself into seven permanent streams, and increase in intensity according to phases which warrant changing its name.

    In the main, this is the "male seed", if we line up "outer and mental rituals" compared to the Six Yogas.

    Half of Vajrasattva is Method or Upaya, which is:

    Upāya (उपाय, “means”) refers to the “process of various experiences through which the Sādhaka has to pass before the deity is realised and visualised”.—The Guhyasamāja (chapter 18) calls this process Upāya (means) which is recognised as of four kinds.

    The four upāyas are:—

    Sevā (worship),

    This makes sense. We have an idea how Vajrasattva is supposed to work, and then he is going to do these methods in order to really visualize a deity.

    Sevā (worship) is again sub-divided into two, namely, Sāmānya (ordinary) and Uttama (excellent). Of these two, the Sāmānya-sevā consists of four Vajras: first, the conception of Śūnyatā; second, its transformation into the germ-syllable; third, its evolution in the form of a deity, and the fourth, the external representation of the deity.

    Well, if we try the above exercise at all, it is a Seva. Uttamaseva means it is understood as the start of Six Yogas.

    In the Six Yogas:

    seva (practice) corresponds to pratyahara and dhyana, upasadhana (near-realization) to pranayama and dharana, and sadhana (realization) to anusmrti. Implicitly mahasadhana (great realization) is related to samadhi.

    So the definition alone tells me I am not really doing a Sadhana until I am in the stage of Smrti. Therefor, Sati is before this and preliminary, and Samadhi is more of a result.

    And so there are Six Yogas, but, they are kind of blocked off in pairs, since we might say the first set, Pratyahara and Dhyana, are still somewhat similar to any kind of Yoga, may not yet have the Buddhist character, and is like a challengers' field, wherein it will be seen if your capabilities are limited to the most literal or mundane or perhaps "superstitious". This is Seva. It has most of the same vocabulary as Indian spirituality in general.

    Upacara, in general, refers to sixteen or more items used in a ritual, but, in Buddhism:

    Upacara means proximity, crownprince. It is sometimes called proximate concentration.

    We will see if it is a fair synonym to:

    Upasadhana, Pranayama, a training ground for Sadhana as no longer an external prestidigitation, but a move through tantric states of being.

    The real Sadhana then is Smrti, which produces a tantric samadhi appropriate for Highest Yoga.

    That is why we are mostly talking about the development of the ability of Sadhana or Smrti.

    So what we are doing in Yoga is Seva and Upasadhana. And what we are calling Buddhist Pranayama is the beginning of Upasadhana. It means we are training in the Method to do Sadhana, which is Smrti, which is Seven Syllable deity, which is Sadhana.

    Upacara does not come from the Sutras, it comes from Vishuddhimagga, and it kind of at the heart of a modern Theravada debate.

    They argue about whether Samadhi is necessary for Vispassana--Insight, which they say is more important.

    There is no argument because the Four Immeasurables tell us they are for a roaming or wandering mendicant, and so in the context of roaming the mundane world, their terms are accurate. But we are putting this in more specific terms which replace "any object" with Dharmadhatu Vajra in the deity sense.

    Now in their description, it is a bit loose since they always use the term "samadhi" for "mindfulness" at every turn, for instance it is Upacara Samadhi. They say:

    There can be numerous kinds of samādhi. Here we distinguish three types of samādhi or mindfulness:

    Momentary mindfulness (khanika samādhi)
    Access mindfulness (upacāra, pronounced “upachāra,” samādhi)
    Absorption mindfulness (appanā samādhi)

    I think for tantric purposes, we are only calling the last one Samadhi, and the pre-cursors would be more like Ekagatta and Sati. Nothing momentary or transient about the Samadhi we have in mind.

    They say:

    Samādhi (“sama”+”adhi” where “sama” means “same” and “adhi” means “dominance”) means the object becomes the priority. Then the mind gets focused on it. As we discussed in many posts when the mind becomes focused on one object (ārammana), the ekaggata cetasika takes over and makes the mind latched “on to it.”

    That is how one gets to not only samādhi but also anāriya jhāna using breath meditation, just by focusing the mind on the breath.

    One gets to samādhi on whatever the activity one gets absorbed in. Being mindful depends on the situation. The kind of mindfulness needed while driving a car is different from the mindfulness required to design something (or read a book). And the mindfulness required to attain a jhāna needs to be different from those two.

    So, driving is more like Momentary or Khanika--you can concentrate one-pointedly while still shifting across many external objects.

    Reading, etc., is more of Upacara--steadier and with fewer distractions.

    The process of concentration as described in the Abhidhammattha Sangaha (IX 17, 18):

    When that sign has been thoroughly apprehended and enters into range of the mind door just as if it were seen by the eye, then it is called the learning sign, and that meditation becomes concentrated. When one is thus concentrated, one then applies oneself to meditation by means of that preliminary [parikamma] concentration based on the learning sign. As one does so, an object which is the counterpart of that (learning sign) becomes well established and fixed in the mind -- (an object) which is freed of the flaws of the original object, reckoned as a concept, born of meditation. Then it is said that the counterpart sign has arisen.

    Thereafter, access [upacāra] development is accomplished, consisting in concentration of the sense sphere in which the obstacles have been abandoned.

    Fast forward to our current century:

    Access concentration is characterized by the significant reduction or complete dropping of the five hindrances and the arising and strengthening of jhāna factors. [...] It is easy to confuse momentary concentration with access concentration. One difference is that with access concentration, the meditator's continuity with the object is much longer and more stable over time. Another difference is that with access concentration, the object is much more energized and "bright". [...] In access concentration, the jhāna factors are present but insufficiently strong for full absorption into jhāna.

    -- Stephen Snyder & Tina Rasmussen (Practicing the Jhānas)

    or more broadly speaking:

    The Buddhist tradition has introduced the term upacāra samadhi [...] to refer to a non absorptive experience of concentration that begins with the arising of the counterpart sign and endures until consciousness enters into full absorption. Upacāra samadhi implies concentration that is in the vicinity of jhāna [...] and describes the experiences that precede absorption, but it does not necessarily leads to jhāna. It may refer to the conditions that precede jhāna; it may refer to experiences that are reminiscent of first jhāna mental factors, but without the seclusion of absorption; and it may describe the mature concentration that accompanies those meditation objects (such as discernment of the body parts, and various recollections) that do not have the potential to reach full absorption. [...] Some meditators use the term upacāra samādhi so loosely that it merely describes the feeling of being concentrated and a mind that is stable and happy during meditation.

    -- Shaila Catherine (Wisdom Wide and Deep)

    Upacara means that one has overcome the Five Hindrances or Nivarani, which are not the Skandhas, but obvious types of Vitarka or discursion or distraction that would obviously burden Mindfulness or Sati.

    And so while it may not be clear why Samadhi has been drop-kicked way beyond all the cumulative synonyms of "concentration" where it used to be, if we just want to blot it out and know that we would learn its meaning within the state of Access Concentration, this will work, since Access Concentration has a specific point within Puja or Seva as well as within the Six Yogas:

    Upacara, restraining the Hindrances, is the outer Nirajan, or, Nirajan is counted among the standard sixteen accessories in exoteric Upacara.

    "Outer" means that it has to do with the Offering Goddesses. And then what we find is that there are "two Lamps", because the second, Inner Nirajan is a different group of Five ending on Food, which has a more powerful Lamp. This becomes the Agni Kunda or Red Dharmodaya or Triangle, or item of Ghasmari, and if this Offering is successful and you enter the Dissolutions, it will be the fourth dissolution, Turquoise Lamp.

    "Accomplishment" of Upacara said something pretty similar to a Mind Object arises as a Luminous Mind Object. If truly Accomplished, that Accomplishment is the seed for the next stage. Here, it seems mainly about Hindrances (Nivarani), whereas Sadhana is more about stopping the Skandhas. The definition of Nivarana says Hindrances are temporarily suppressed at this stage, are not completely stopped until entering the super-mundane path as Srotistipanna, Anangamin, and Arhat.

    In Prajnaparamita Sutra:

    If he has been able to reject the five sense objects (kāmaguṇa) and remove the five obstacles (nīvaraṇa), the ascetic practices the five dharmas:

    aspiration (chanda),
    exertion (vīrya),
    mindfulness (smṛti),
    clear seeing (saṃprajñāna),
    concentration of mind (cittaikāgratā).

    By practicing these five dharmas, he acquires the first dhyāna furnished with five members (pañcāṅga-samanvāgata).

    In the oldest texts of Buddhism, dhyāna (Sanskrit) or jhāna (Pāḷi) is the training of the mind, commonly translated as meditation, to withdraw the mind from the automatic responses to sense-impressions, and leading to a "state of perfect equanimity and awareness (upekkhā-sati-parisuddhi)." Dhyāna may have been the core practice of pre-sectarian Buddhism, in combination with several related practices which together lead to perfected mindfulness and detachment, and are fully realized with the practice of dhyana.

    "Leading to a state" means those are the qualities of the Fourth Jana:

    Upekkha Sati Parishuddhi

    If we compare the versions of "nivarana", we find a corresondence between "older and newer" ways of expressing what is blocked.

    Pali canon:

    Nīvarana (“hindrances”) are 5 qualities which are obstacles to the mind and blind our mental vision. In the presence of them we cannot reach neighbourhood-concentration (upacāra-samādhi) and full concentration (appanā-samādhi), and are unable to discern clearly the truth. They are:

    sensuous desire (kāmacchanda),
    ill-will (vyāpāda),
    sloth and torpor (thīna-middha),
    restlessness and scruples (uddhacca-kukkucca), and
    skeptical doubt (vicikicchā).

    Prajnaparamita Sutra:

    It is also necessary to stay away from bad dharmas; the latter constitute the five obstacles to dhyāna, which are

    envy (kāmacchanda-nīvaraṇa),
    malevolence (vyāpāda-nīvaraṇa),
    laziness-torpor (styānamiddha-nīvaraṇa),
    excitement and regret (auddhatyakaukṛtya-nīvaraṇa),
    doubt (vicikitsā-nīvaraṇa).

    Dhyana is the Second Yoga, which would correspond to Upacara if not Absorption Samadhi of the older system. When you replace these distractions with virtues, you can practice the first of "the Dhyanas", or you "have" it or are "in" it.

    Dhyāna (ध्यान, “meditation”) refers to one of six limbs of Yoga to be employed in Uttamasevā (excellent worship), according to the Guhyasamāja chapter 18.—[...] Dhyāna (meditation) is explained as the conception of the five desired objects through the five Dhyāni Buddhas, namely, Vairocana, Ratnasambhava, Amitābha, Amoghasiddhi and Akṣobhya.

    This Dhyāna is again subdivided into five kinds:

    Vitarka (cogitation),
    Vicāra (thinking),
    Priti (pleasure),
    Sukha (happiness),
    Ekāgratā (concentration).

    Overall, there are Nine Dhyanas, and the significance here is that Buddha's "spark" in being unsatisfied with what he had been taught consisted in remembering a moment from childhood that was spontaneously free from care and filled with happiness. So, his system could perhaps be considered emotionally-rooted, since this state became the First Dhyana.

    In the tantras, we see the Fourth is relatively hard to attain, and beyond it are Formless Dhyanas.

    2) Dhyāna (ध्यान, “absorption”) or Caturdhyāna refers to the “four absorptions” as defined in the Dharma-saṃgraha (section 72):

    the first absorption has thinking, reflection, and the happiness and joy born of seclusion,
    the second has internal clarity, and happiness and joy,
    the third is equanimous, mindful, and has full knowledge,
    the fourth absorption has complete purity of mindfulness and equanimity, with feeling that is neither-unpleasant-nor-pleasant.

    Upacara seems to have more to do with Dhyana, which itself is already involving the Five Buddhas and Offerings.

    As Body Mandala, and Seva, the first Two Yogas are:

    Pratyahara (withdrawal): According to HPB, the first stage of real Raja Yoga. HPB calls Pratyahara the initial stage of Practical Raja Yoga. She regards these stages as "Six Paramitas of Perfection" or six stages of dhyana itself. Control of ahara or "food": physically, the five elements; mentally, the senses or skandhas; and associations (with people). There are four main forms of pratyahara: indriya-pratyahara—control of the senses; karma-pratyahara—control of action; prana-pratyahara—control (withdrawal) of prana (from the senses, etc.); and mano-pratyahara—withdrawal of mind from the senses. All the withdrawals from the "outer" transfer consciousness to the "subtle" and assist in visualisation. Pratyahara is the awareness of bliss and emptiness developed by contemplating the emptiness of appearances through bringing the activity winds into the central channel, thereby creating the experience of empty-forms. These are the ten signs, like smoke, and so forth. Pratyahara (control) is here described as the process by which the ten sense-organs are controlled.

    Dhyana (meditation on the nature of Tathagathas); the awareness of bliss and emptiness absorbed in the emptiness of the appearances of empty-forms through having perfected and increased the appearance of the empty-forms of the ten (types of) signs. Dhyana (meditation) is explained as the conception of the five desired objects through the five Dhyani Buddhas, namely, Vairocana, Ratnasambhava, Amitabha, Amoghasiddhi and Aksobhya. This Dhyana is again subdivided into five kinds : Vitarka (cogitation), Vicara (thinking), Priti (pleasure), Sukha (happiness), and Ekagrata (concentration).

    Vesna Wallce on Tenfold Yoga. Vajrapani on the Ten Signs appearing in the Mind Mirror of Gnosis. They include the same marks as the Five Dissolutions (Smoke, Mirage, Fireflies, Lamp, Sky, but Flame here), Sun, Moon, Supreme Form, and Drop (Nirmanakaya). Then the Anahata Sound is Sambhogakaya. This operates on the Aggregate of Gnosis or Jnana Skandha. Its purification completes Body Mandala.

    The first four Signs are considered Night Yoga, and the rest Day Yoga, which is an open eye gaze into a cloudless sky.

    These are the result of non-engagement with sense-objects, and produce a bliss not from the imagined or real consort.

    Parasol was among the first Buddhist definitions of Samadhi, and her emanation in Karma Family:

    Vajraśṛṅkhalā (वज्रशृङ्खला) is the name of Dūtī (i.e., messengers of Lord Vajrapāṇi) mentioned as attending the teachings in the 6th century Mañjuśrīmūlakalpa.

    Vajrashrnkala is the Activity of Samadhi, Vajraraudri is the Path of it--not the Mental Object or Dharmadhatu Vajra itself, but the underlying Sense Faculty of Consciousness, which operates when objects lose their duality as opposite from self or subject.

    Chain is also the idea behind Guru Parampara and behind the meaning of "param-" as "infinite", i. e., whatever is linked to a thing, containing every link.

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    Default Re: Nirakara and Shentong Buddhism, Tara, Sadhanas, Sanskrit culture

    Quote Posted by DeDukshyn (here)
    Daaang brother this is a lot of stuff ...

    I am sort of just "moving" things from a few years in other threads, which is of untold size, so it can be organized better using the second post as an index. This, itself, is sort of like a funnel to the fact that...the 84,000 website will probably eventually hold 84,000 texts...or that a single mandala deity such as Kalachakra has over seven hundred supporting deities. Easy to get overwhelmed.

    Instead, we will do more of a "how to navigate" 84,000 and similar things, since there is, so to speak, a relatively narrow band and order to it all.

    Some of it we can use for personal practice. Some of the Lamas will even say that a recording is sufficient for basic mantra transmission such as Prajnaparamita. And when you have that, you are invited to pursue its inner meaning. It is difficult, but, I believe it is very, very worth a thorough and harmonious approach, rather than the kind of technique-shopping I may have done when I was younger, which produced a damaged version of what Prajnaparamita is trying to do.

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