Golden Dragon Shining

Bon and Buddhism

37 posts in this topic

 

1 hour ago, Fangshi said:

Am I the only one who is disgusted by these 'Holy men' sitting on thrones, wearing crowns/ hats, and fake smiles?

 

Forgive me for posting photos of the leaders of Tibetan Buddhism and Bön, in a thread about Tibetan Buddhism and Bön...

I've hidden them so you can rest easy.

Peace

_/\_

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1 hour ago, Fangshi said:

Am I the only one who is disgusted by these 'Holy men' sitting on thrones, wearing crowns/ hats, and fake smiles?

 

 

Hi,

 

Your disgust may be cultural.  I can see why from a certain perspective you might see things this way but actually it is better to see it from the point of view of the Tibetans themselves.

 

I can't speak for Bon about which I know little but Tibet inherited vajrayana Buddhism from Medieval India - that is the period from say 600 AD to the end of the 13th century when Buddhism disappeared from India.  Before that happened the social and cultural conditions were quite unstable and war like.  You can see from history that Buddhism is very adaptable to whatever cultural environment it finds itself, so Chinese Buddhism and Japanese Buddhism are distinct and so on.  It does this without giving up its core principles or Dharma Seals.

 

What is reflected in the imagery and 'memes' I suppose you could call them is the rich and vibrant culture of Medieval India which comprised waring kingdoms - what was valued in this culture which was constantly threatened by Islam and aggressive Hinduism was active kingship - dominance, war like stance and sexual potency to preserve the line.  Thus most vajrayana images place a central 'deity' on a throne like king, surrounded by his attendants (mandala) and within a big circle (chakra) = his kingdom.  You could compare this in Western iconography to the medieval Christ as King type images.

 

Tibet took and 'froze' this tradition for over a thousand years (800ish - 1950ish) and as it is culturally embedded it is instinctive to place a lineage holder or abbot or high lama on a throne and dress him in king-like regalia as a matter of respect.  To us it looks either odd or beautifully exotic depending on your own standpoint.  If we hold values of equality and so forth then placing someone on a throne seems odd.  But this really is just a cultural clash and not that significant - although I agree that opens the door to many people misinterpreting what they see.

 

 

Edited by Apech
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Easy for the DL to say reconciliation after they mostly destroyed Bon. Maybe this is the cause of China in Tibet? 

That is partly why I like Daoism, less double standards ha. Dao is a superior path :D
 

Edited by Golden Dragon Shining

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18 hours ago, Fangshi said:

Don't feel attacked, I just wanted to point out the hypocrisy of this.

 

Doing a world tour visiting the biggest scumbag world leaders, interfering with politics, yet changing nothing, and ask 600 euros for a speech in countries all over the world and keep spreading the love. I just hate the concept.

 

I'm sorry, bad experiences with 'buddhism' ;)

 

 

I don't feel attacked but I don't feel good about sharing things that have meaning for me and have them ridiculed.

There are negative aspects to everything on the Earth to someone. The judgement and reaction, the negativity, is in us not in the object. This is how we create our reality. You are entitled to your opinion and I respect that so rather than argue with you, easiest to simply hide the photos behind a button. I recognize that not everyone is comfortable with the Bön and Buddhist paradigms and that's fine as it is. 

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On 7/15/2017 at 10:53 AM, Starjumper said:

 

The reason is probably due to the pagan or Taoist origins of Bon, in addition to it's focus on developing chi power.  The system originated in the Tien Shan mountains, far to the North, and migrated South to Tibet.  So it was not originally a Buddhist practice, it simply migrated into a land that became Buddhist after, way after, the teachings arrived there.  This is also why they would say it was primitive and barbarian.

 

This explains the history of Bon and it's primary source:

 

----------------------

I found an article written by a master Pak Dong Sun, which was very poorly translated into English and so I have edited it quite a lot to make it clear in addition to removing parts that did not apply to the subject at hand:

 

Me, the primitive barbarian.

 

Actually Bön roots most likely came from Persia to Tibet but the history is a bit uncertain.

While some like to say Bön and Buddhist roots came from Daoist practices, my Daoist master from Taiwan says just the opposite...

 

The story of Buddhism and Bön is basically the story of every indigenous tradition encountering a "more sophisticated" civilization. The choice tends to be assimilation or genocide. The Bönpos were able to assimilate.

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I don't feel attacked but I don't feel good about sharing things that have meaning for me and have them ridiculed.

 

Thanks for putting it like that. I completely agree with your view and thanks for sharing it.

I didn't mean to attack nobody, or hurt people's feelings, so sorry for that.

 

Quote

The judgement and reaction, the negativity, is in us not in the object. This is how we create our reality.

 

This is true.

 

I will humbly take that lesson in today, thanks.

 

Edit; Also, for what it's worth on a forum, I apologize in general for my one point of view ignorant statement towards Buddhism.

Edited by Fangshi
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1 hour ago, steve said:

 

Actually Bön roots most likely came from Persia to Tibet but the history is a bit uncertain.

While some like to say Bön and Buddhist roots came from Daoist practices, my Daoist master from Taiwan says just the opposite...

 

The story of Buddhism and Bön is basically the story of every indigenous tradition encountering a "more sophisticated" civilization. The choice tends to be assimilation or genocide. The Bönpos were able to assimilate.

 

Yes genocide or assimilation.  The theory I have heard, and why I shared that info, is because I read that Asian shamanism came out of Siberia and originated at the end of the last ice age around ten thousand years ago.  It is known that there was actually a fair amount of trading of goods, and of course information too, all around Asia so I guess the safest thing to say is that it's really hard to tell where an ancient prehistoric practice came from; but if it has power then many will claim it.

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19 hours ago, Apech said:

 

 

Hi,

 

Your disgust may be cultural.  I can see why from a certain perspective you might see things this way but actually it is better to see it from the point of view of the Tibetans themselves.

 

I can't speak for Bon about which I know little but Tibet inherited vajrayana Buddhism from Medieval India - that is the period from say 600 AD to the end of the 13th century when Buddhism disappeared from India.  Before that happened the social and cultural conditions were quite unstable and war like.  You can see from history that Buddhism is very adaptable to whatever cultural environment it finds itself, so Chinese Buddhism and Japanese Buddhism are distinct and so on.  It does this without giving up its core principles or Dharma Seals.

 

What is reflected in the imagery and 'memes' I suppose you could call them is the rich and vibrant culture of Medieval India which comprised waring kingdoms - what was valued in this culture which was constantly threatened by Islam and aggressive Hinduism was active kingship - dominance, war like stance and sexual potency to preserve the line.  Thus most vajrayana images place a central 'deity' on a throne like king, surrounded by his attendants (mandala) and within a big circle (chakra) = his kingdom.  You could compare this in Western iconography to the medieval Christ as King type images.

 

Tibet took and 'froze' this tradition for over a thousand years (800ish - 1950ish) and as it is culturally embedded it is instinctive to place a lineage holder or abbot or high lama on a throne and dress him in king-like regalia as a matter of respect.  To us it looks either odd or beautifully exotic depending on your own standpoint.  If we hold values of equality and so forth then placing someone on a throne seems odd.  But this really is just a cultural clash and not that significant - although I agree that opens the door to many people misinterpreting what they see.

 

 

Nice summary. I suspect the Tibetan traditions are an amalgam of local and imported customs not just Indian, even more so among the Bönpos. 

 

4 hours ago, Golden Dragon Shining said:

Easy for the DL to say reconciliation after they mostly destroyed Bon. Maybe this is the cause of China in Tibet? 

That is partly why I like Daoism, less double standards ha. Dao is a superior path :D
 

I don't think it was easy for the Dalai Lama. He went against millennia of anti-Bönpo sentiment. As a practicing Bönpo, I think he deserves a lot of credit for his stance and actions on the subject though you are certainly entitled to disagree. In general, paths are not superior or inferior to one another, it's far more accurate and practical to discuss paths in terms of more or less suitable for a given individual. 

 

1 hour ago, Fangshi said:

 

Thanks for putting it like that. I completely agree with your view and thanks for sharing it.

I didn't mean to attack nobody, or hurt people's feelings, so sorry for that.

 

 

This is true.

 

I will humbly take that lesson in today, thanks.

Your humility and kind response reflects the quality of your character.

I greatly appreciate that - I bear no grudge.

_/\_

 

When Buddhist and Bön leaders and teachers are elevated and treated royally, it is important to understand that what is being honored is the inner guru, the nature of mind, that is within all of us. The person or deity is simply a representation of what is within each of us already, waiting to blossom; and the Tibetan approach is such that a close and loving relationship with the guru is felt to be the most direct way for someone to connect with that inner nature. When you look at their geographical location, primitive living conditions, absence of communication and libraries, and so forth. No doubt it was the most effective, if not only, method they had available. Not saying it is right, wrong, better, or worse but it does work well in the Tibetan culture.

 

We are not worshiping a human (or a deity for that matter), we are acknowledging and honoring the degree to which they embody and express the enlightened qualities of the inner teacher - Kuntuzangpo. Furthermore, the guru is the one who has realized and helped us to realize that inner nature and for many it is a very real and very precious gift that elicits a great deal of appreciation and, to some degree, reverence. The pomp and circumstance is certainly a turn off for a lot of people, it was for me at one point. I need to remain sensitive to that - different strokes for different folks and all that.

 

 

3 minutes ago, Starjumper said:

 

Yes genocide or assimilation.  The theory I have heard, and why I shared that info, is because I read that Asian shamanism came out of Siberia and originated at the end of the last ice age around ten thousand years ago.  It is known that there was actually a fair amount of trading of goods, and of course information too, all around Asia so I guess the safest thing to say is that it's really hard to tell where an ancient prehistoric practice came from; but if it has power then many will claim it.

There is an excellent book about that - Bo and Bön by Dmitry Ermakov

 

I have experience practicing both Daoist cultivation and Yungdrung Bön.

There are clearly many profound similarities, and many differences.

I have no idea or opinion about what came from where, only that they are beautiful and effective practices and that I am extraordinarily lucky to have come into contact with the practices, teachers, and lineages. 

 

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8 minutes ago, steve said:

I have no idea or opinion about what came from where, only that they are beautiful and effective practices and that I am extraordinarily lucky to have come into contact with the practices, teachers, and lineages. 

 

That's the important part, finding a practice that you love that is beautiflu and effective, and that's how I feel about my practice.

 

Congratulations to you.

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bodhidharma

Quote

 

Continuous lineage from Gautama Buddha[edit]

Eventually these descriptions of the lineage evolved into a continuous lineage from Śākyamuni Buddha to Bodhidharma. The idea of a line of descent from Śākyamuni Buddha is the basis for the distinctive lineage tradition of Chan Buddhism.

According to the Song of Enlightenment (證道歌 Zhèngdào gē) by Yǒngjiā Xuánjué (665-713),[65] one of the chief disciples of Huìnéng, was Bodhidharma, the 28th Patriarch of Buddhism in a line of descent from Gautama Buddha via his disciple Mahākāśyapa:

Mahakashyapa was the first, leading the line of transmission;
Twenty-eight Fathers followed him in the West;
The Lamp was then brought over the sea to this country;
And Bodhidharma became the First Father here
His mantle, as we all know, passed over six Fathers,
And by them many minds came to see the Light.[66]

 

 

Edited by allinone
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