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9788177551426

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rs to a pan-Indian religious movements (also called Tantrism) that arose in about the 6th century AD within both Buddhism and Hinduism and to the texts (either Buddhist or Hindu) setting forth its practices and beliefs. The man emphasis of Tantrism is on the development of the devotee's dormant psychophysical...  Read more
rs to a pan-Indian religious movements (also called Tantrism) that arose in about the 6th century AD within both Buddhism and Hinduism and to the texts (either Buddhist or Hindu) setting forth its practices and beliefs. The man emphasis of Tantrism is on the development of the devotee's dormant psychophysical powers by means of special meditations and ritual tech­niques. These are essentially esoteric and must be passed on personally from master to initiate. Stressing the coordination of body, speech, and mind, they include the use of symbolic gestures (mudras); the uttering of potent formulas (mantras); the entering (through meditation) of sacred diagrams (mandalas) and yantras; the meditator's creative visualization of and identification with specific divine forms; and the physical, iconographic, or mental use of sexual forces and symbols.In Buddhist tradition the word Tantra normally refers to a special class of the Buddha's teachings and more specifically to the scriptures that embody it. But contrary to its normal usage, the word does not usually refer to the whole system of Tantric practice and theory. For the doctrinal system of Tantra, the terms Mantrayana ("Mantra Vehicle") and Vajrayana ("Vajra" or "Adamantine Vehicle") are used instead.Vajrayana (Diamond Vehicle) or Mantra­yana (Way of the Holy Formulae) Buddhism, the original form of esoteric Buddhism, arose in India through the cross-fertilization of Mahayana Buddhism and Hindu Tantra. It is closely associated with Hindu Tantra, but Buddhist masters in India complied a large number of tantras which have been attributed lo the various Buddhas who enunciated them. All Buddhism is in a sense mystical, in that Buddhism aims at the final mysticism involves arcane and involved concepts and methods which can be used and understood only after a lengthy initiation.The use of yoga techniques in Vajrayana Buddhism, taught to initiates by various mas­ters, led to an emphasis on the body's role in achieving enlightenment. The realization of nirvana as sunyata (void) is counter-pointed by cultivation of the compassion which distinguishes a bodhisattva (the Mahayana saint), and the union of the two must be experienced with all the faculties. The two are often visualized through male-female imagery, and the yogic practices by which the initiate achieves enlightenment comprise a four-stage process patterned after the stages of courtship and sometimes culminating in ritual union with a female devotee. This is held to be beyond normal sexual union, as the initiate is in perfect control of his desires and feelings. The final aim is the develop­ment of a diamond (vajra) body utterly with­out duality.The text guides the reader towards a greater understanding of the secrets, explain­ing various important and key facets in language simple enough for a general reader to understand the mystery of Buddhist Tantras and clear enough for a student to provoke him to further research on the subject.This is probably the first and the only such Encyclopaedia available on Buddhist Tantra and will be welcomed by all classes of readers--general, researches, teachers, and students alike. It will particularly be interesting for the western readers as it provides him an opportunity to get impor­tant information on this branch of Buddhist philosophy at one place
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