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PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2012 1:30 am 
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Tashi delek,

This message could be very important, as well for the Bon world as for the other 4 Tibetan Traditions......

The letter from H.E. the Menri Ponlop Rinpoche gives here a statement which gives us an impression form the fruit vehicle(s) in Bon from before the 7th century.

Mutsog Marro
KY




This news article was sent to us from Menri Lopon — Wonderful news for the Bön World!

Text discovery casts doubt on Buddhist influence on Bön



Ancient Bön Letter Treasure found

The pending publication of 30 newly discovered books of ancient Tibetan Bön text is anxiously awaited by Bön scholars worldwide.

The texts that are at least 1,600 years old were collected by two scholars and teachers at Lentru Northwest University, Drug Thar and Losang Lhundup. The two worked together to collect the texts in Kansu State, Tang Teng District, from Tibetan families in the area.

Over the last several decades many ancient texts have been published, but this is an especially rich find.

These are the oldest Bön texts ever discovered and they predate the arrival of Buddhism in Tibet from India.

There are 31 different texts containing 560 chapters. The texts were kept by dozens of Tibetan families.

Many scholars and researchers examined the texts and determined that they are authentic ancient Tibetan writings. The shapes of the Tibetan letters have Zhang Zhung characteristics that identify the texts as being from an ancient era.

The subject of the texts include causal vehicles of Bön and describe the cultural life of ancient Zhang Zhung, including dress and social interaction.

The texts also contain information about Tibetan medical practices and religious instructions, including directions for offering incense on mountain tops, how to make offerings to mountain deities, divinations, astrology and rituals. The instructions are accompanied by ritual drawings.

The fruit vehicle is also described.

Scholars determined that the texts date from before the fifth and sixth centuries A.D., making this a very important ancient text.

The news has stirred interest among scholars worldwide, especially those interested in Tibetan medicines.

Bön scholars who have indicated interest in the texts include renowned Bön scholar Tong Kor Tsering Thar; Palbar Dorje, Lecturer at Beijing University; and Chinese scholar Hrun Ben Rung. All three recognize the texts as artifacts of ancient Tibetan culture and that they authentically reflect customs, letters and religion of the time. They agree that the texts are important for Bön research.

Researchers from the U.S., Japan, Germany, Italy and France among others are anxiously awaiting the publication of the texts, urging that it be published as soon as possible.

The value of the texts is immeasurable for researchers of the ancient Bön tradition.

“Many Tibetan scholars thought that before the seventh century in Tibet, there were no Tibetan letters, no religion and no fruit vehicles,” said Menri Lopon Trinley Nyima, head instructor at the Menri Monastery in India. “Those scholars thought that to learn meditation and enlightenment practices Bönpos copied from Buddhism, especially the fruit vehicles. They believed Bönpo fruit vehicles only existed after the 10th century. Bönpos believed those things existed in Bön culture more than 16,000 years ago.

“Many scholars subscribe to the belief that Song Tsen Gampo, king of Tibet, brought Buddhist scholarship to Tibet. The king was born in 617 A.D. He sent an emissary, Thunmi Sambota, to India to learn Buddhism. According to accepted histories, Sambota returned and established Tibetan letters.

By proving that Tibetan letters existed before the fifth and sixth centuries, the newly discovered texts disprove much of the accepted history of Tibet. The texts also show that the Bön religion independently developed a path to enlightenment called the fruit vehicle.”

Translation from Tibetan by Menri Lopon, Jackie Cole and Harvey Rice

Menri Monastery, March 22, 2012

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2012 3:19 am 
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it will be interesting to see if the dating holds up (personally I doubt it). The Dunhuang mss only survived because they were walled up in a cave for a thousand years. If these texts were "collected from families", meaning they were sitting in cupboards and on altars, theres basically no way they're that old. looks interesting in any case.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 27, 2012 8:55 am 
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Tashi delek,

Thanks for your reply.

Like we saw is it only a question of time and investigation.
But the texts were anyway dated from before 7th century.

Further has Bon a rich family tradition, were the members go back to Buddha Miwo.
In last unbroken traditions is Bon also known as unbroken lineage and they also have their sources.

Imo there is only a historical gap which must be bridged with some evidences and that must be like always on paper.
So the oral traditions are not always in the Tibetan Traditions accepted and that is also important to realize in this complex case.

Mutsog Marro
KY

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THOUGH A MAN BE LEARNED
IF HE DOES NOT APPLY HIS KNOWLEDGE
HE RESEMBLES THE BLIND MAN
WHO WITH A LAMP IN THE HAND CANNOT SEE THE ROAD


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 29, 2012 2:51 pm 
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Tashi delek

Thank you Kalden for this wonderful news, i hope it is available soon for bönpo's all over the world.

Greetings Bennie


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 30, 2012 4:41 pm 
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gad rgyangs wrote:
it will be interesting to see if the dating holds up (personally I doubt it). The Dunhuang mss only survived because they were walled up in a cave for a thousand years. If these texts were "collected from families", meaning they were sitting in cupboards and on altars, theres basically no way they're that old. looks interesting in any case.



Tashi delek,

Thanks for your reply.

To own some antiques which is older than 1300 years that is no problem i guess so, if stored behind walls or kept in honour by some families.

So they were anyway dated from before 700 and that is far more than 1300 years. Yeh the paper quality must be excellent and also the maintenance of the scripts.

But at the universities they have so their methods to prove the age by carbon method and i suppose they did do that already.

Mutsog Marro
KY

_________________
THOUGH A MAN BE LEARNED
IF HE DOES NOT APPLY HIS KNOWLEDGE
HE RESEMBLES THE BLIND MAN
WHO WITH A LAMP IN THE HAND CANNOT SEE THE ROAD


Last edited by kalden yungdrung on Fri Mar 30, 2012 4:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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