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PostPosted: Sun Dec 20, 2009 9:25 pm 
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I thought this looked like a useful resource.

http://buddhistinformatics.ddbc.edu.tw/ ... sbibl.html

At the moment I am delving into Chinese aspects of Tantra, having stumbled across:

''The Ritual of the Sacred Dharanis For The Destruction of Hell, The Transformation of Karmic Hindrances, and the Liberation from the Three Conditioned Worlds.''

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 21, 2009 12:46 pm 
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The wide popularity of the Ch'an and Pureland schools in China sometimes overshadows the fact that Vajrayana is alive and well in certain parts of the country. The conditions are now allowing for it to become more widely taught than in the past.

As Vajrayana spread into China centuries ago, certain practices and liturgies were combined with Chinese Buddhism (and culture) to form a somewhat unique tradition which still continues today, similar in the way that when Vajrayana spread to Tibet, where it took on some of the existing characteristics that existed there to create what we now call "Tibetan Buddhism". Though there are also elements of the Tibetan traditions present as well.

M

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 22, 2009 3:18 am 
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malalu wrote:
The wide popularity of the Ch'an and Pureland schools in China sometimes overshadows the fact that Vajrayana is alive and well in certain parts of the country. The conditions are now allowing for it to become more widely taught than in the past.


Although most western perceptions on Zen and Pureland are from a Japanese perspective and system, it is a little different in China. It is best not to consider them as separate schools, but rather, as types of practice within the larger Mahayana fold. A large number, if not a majority, of Chinese Buddhists will practice both forms, and other forms too, over their lifetime.

Likewise, although Tibetan Buddhism (which is not just Vajrayana but includes exoteric teachings too) is sometimes practiced as a whole tradition in itself in China, usually the Tantric teachings are blended into Chinese Buddhism. This begins probably from the Tang dynasty, but in particular with the Yuan (Mongolian) and Qing (Manchu) dynasties, where Tantric Buddhism was the Buddhism of the imperial court. This filtered down, and nowadays recitation of a number of mantra, and other (outer) tantric practices are considered perfectly standard in most Chinese Buddhist traditions.

Then there are those Chinese Buddhists who practice "Tibetan Buddhism", basically as close to how the Tibetans themselves may practice it. Though, because the more traditional Chinese systems are still there, they will also use these two. (So some practices may be more common in China than in Tibet.)

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As Vajrayana spread into China centuries ago, certain practices and liturgies were combined with Chinese Buddhism (and culture) to form a somewhat unique tradition which still continues today, similar in the way that when Vajrayana spread to Tibet, where it took on some of the existing characteristics that existed there to create what we now call "Tibetan Buddhism". Though there are also elements of the Tibetan traditions present as well.

M


Yes, this is very true.

Despite a lot of people who seem to make the Tibetan cause as one against the whole of China, I think it really, really important to keep in mind that Tibeta and China have had a very close relationship over 1000+ yrs, with Buddhism playing a very important role. There is a lot of commonality between these two Buddhist traditions. By working to strengthen this relationship and friendship, we could probably do a lot to help the Tibetan cause.

~~ Huifeng

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