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Tantra II - Dhamma Wheel

Tantra II

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths. What can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
davcuts
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Tantra II

Postby davcuts » Sat Mar 21, 2009 9:38 pm

Since the Tantra thread I started was closed I will start another thread.

In that thread I feel I may have been a little harsh towards tantra. Yes some of the practices seem to be questionable, but that doesn't mean tantra is evil. Tantra is practiced so practitioners can see everything is empty regardless of how they may appear. That doesn't mean tantra practitioners can do anything they won't. Moral discipline is a must in tantra as well. From some of the replies it seems some people don't view tantra that way by calling it evil. I've practiced tantra and I can say there is nothing evil about it. I was having doubt about tantra and felt it may have never been taught by Buddha. I also wanted to know why tantra is not taught in Theravada. That is the only reason I posted here. Tantra is not evil, and chances are people who say it is have never practiced it. For proof that Buddha may have taught tantra please see this thread at e-Sangha:

http://www.lioncity.net/buddhism/index. ... opic=85249

Moderators if you want to close this thread like the other tantra thread please move this post into the tantra thread.

Thanks,
David

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clw_uk
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Re: Tantra II

Postby clw_uk » Sat Mar 21, 2009 9:46 pm

Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken

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Ben
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Re: Tantra II

Postby Ben » Sat Mar 21, 2009 10:29 pm

Dave
I think your questions were answered in the first tantra thread,
So, what is your motivation in creating a second tantra thread?

Ben
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

(Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • •

e: [email protected]..

davcuts
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Re: Tantra II

Postby davcuts » Sat Mar 21, 2009 10:42 pm

I wanted to respond to some of the replies I had received, but it was closed before I had a chance. That was the only reason for starting another thread. Some felt I was bad mouthing tantra, and are now angry at me. I just wanted to make it clear I was not. Nor do I believe tantra is evil as someone's post suggested in the original thread.

David

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mikenz66
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Re: Tantra II

Postby mikenz66 » Sun Mar 22, 2009 1:30 am

Hi David,

Like Ben I'm still confused about why you want to discuss Tantra here. According to Theravada doctrine Tantra (and Mahayana) is, at best, irrelevant. I presume that the vast majority of people here are like me in knowing nothing about Tantra, so I'm puzzled as to how you think we can help.

I get the feeling that I'm missing something...

Metta
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clw_uk
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Re: Tantra II

Postby clw_uk » Sun Mar 22, 2009 1:35 am

Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken

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Ravana
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Re: Tantra II

Postby Ravana » Sun Mar 22, 2009 4:06 am

“The incomparable Wheel of Dhamma has been set in motion by the Blessed One in the deer sanctuary at Isipatana, and no seeker, brahmin, celestial being, demon, god, or any other being in the world can stop it.”

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Re: Tantra II

Postby tiltbillings » Sun Mar 22, 2009 4:27 am


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Ravana
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Re: Tantra II

Postby Ravana » Sun Mar 22, 2009 5:43 am

“The incomparable Wheel of Dhamma has been set in motion by the Blessed One in the deer sanctuary at Isipatana, and no seeker, brahmin, celestial being, demon, god, or any other being in the world can stop it.”

davcuts
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Re: Tantra II

Postby davcuts » Sun Mar 22, 2009 5:56 am


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retrofuturist
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Re: Tantra II

Postby retrofuturist » Sun Mar 22, 2009 6:08 am

"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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Re: Tantra II

Postby jcsuperstar » Sun Mar 22, 2009 3:36 pm

Last edited by jcsuperstar on Sun Mar 22, 2009 10:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat

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gavesako
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Re: Tantra II

Postby gavesako » Sun Mar 22, 2009 8:35 pm

If you actually examined the beliefs of a typical Buddhist in a Theravada country and compared it to those supposedly practising some form of Tantra, you would find many similarities among them -- surprisingly many. There are many aspects of the daily rituals performed by Theravada Buddhists which could be called "tantric" in some form.
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

- Theravada texts
- Translations and history of Pali texts
- Sutta translations

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Ngawang Drolma.
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Re: Tantra II

Postby Ngawang Drolma. » Mon Mar 23, 2009 4:57 am

Dear Dave,

I think it's okay to have doubts, and right now you rely on the larger community for support because you haven't connected with another teacher (as far as I know). I'm sorry people got mad at you for talking about how you feel.

For what it's worth, you have a couple of little practices you can continue to do if you like them, and you can always learn all about Theravadan Buddhism without having to convert (unless you want to). The level of commitments you took before aren't required here!

And yes, the people who were saying in that other thread that tantra is evil and whatnot were probably not going to be of any help to you. Honestly, I think you need practice support for whatever you're comfortable doing right now. I don't see why doubts aren't okay. I have all kinds of troublesome little thoughts. Hang in there :heart:


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Mexicali
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Re: Tantra II

Postby Mexicali » Fri Apr 24, 2009 6:29 pm

"We do not embrace reason at the expense of emotion. We embrace it at the expense of self-deception."
-- Herbert Muschamp

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retrofuturist
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Re: Tantra II

Postby retrofuturist » Fri Apr 24, 2009 9:41 pm

"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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Re: Tantra II

Postby Individual » Sat Apr 25, 2009 6:15 pm

The best things in life aren't things.


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pink_trike
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Re: Tantra II

Postby pink_trike » Sat Apr 25, 2009 6:54 pm

Hi Davcuts,

Having practiced both Theravada and Tantra, I'll say this: I'm glad I had well over a decade of Theravada experience before I started Tantra practice. Tantra turns up the heat and can really make our active and stored delusion boil much faster - having a solid grounding in Theravada practices helped me let the boiling roll on without being beat up or burned by it (much). Don't get me wrong, the burn is beneficial in the end - but once the boiling starts it needs to be ridden out to fruition. A lot of care needs to be taken to prevent getting lost at sea. It isn't "evil - but it is fraught with dangers (of the mind's creation). Any good teacher expressly warns of this before giving initiation, and stresses the need for a strong student/teacher relationship. Imo, here in the West Tantra practices should only be undertaken after extensive Theravada practice, which provides a ground from which to do Tantric exploration of the groundless. Too many Western folks rush into Tantra and get utterly lost in the labyrinths of the mind, with unfortunate results.

Metta
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.

davcuts
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Re: Tantra II

Postby davcuts » Sun Apr 26, 2009 9:08 pm

I feel I was introduced to Tantra too soon. At the time I had the empowerment I was taking care of my elderly mother who has suffered with several strokes. She could barely walk at that time. My teacher told me I need to receive the Highest Yoga Tantric Empowerment at all cost. It would be the only true way to help someone. He even said if we must quit our jobs to attend we should do so. So what I did is leave my elderly mother alone for a week to receive HYT. Keep in mind I did it because it was the only true way to help her. Sounds absurd now but at the time it made perfect sense.

I can't blame Tantra for being introduced to it too soon. It all had to do with the cult I belonged to. Most other traditions would not force something onto someone they didn't feel they where ready for. Still when Tantra is practiced correctly it is a very beautiful thing. Despite all the wrathful looking deities and the practices which seem strange to those who are not familiar with Tantra.

Tantra practiced incorrectly can cause unfortunate results. If someone breaks their vows or samaya it can lead to rebirth in hell. Not only for the student but also the teacher (something my teacher failed to tell me before I had the empowerment). I did practice it incorrectly and as a result I have lost hope of taken a fortunate rebirth. That's one of the reasons I'm attracted to Theravada. Maybe it can give me some hope. I also suffer with lung. A lot of my friends who where once part of the cult do as well. I can't mediate without getting a tremor. It's made meditation nearly impossible to do.

Tantra is beautiful, but I don't recommend it to people who don't have a solid grounding in Sutra. Ultimately what ruined Tantra for me is being involved with a cult who exploit its teachings for personal gain. Others most likely want experience what I did.


David

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clw_uk
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Re: Tantra II

Postby clw_uk » Sun Apr 26, 2009 9:21 pm

Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken


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