Seated Bodhisattva in Meditation, His Hands in Dhyana-mudra Kushan period | c.100 BCE-250 CE
Stucco with traces of polychromy | Gandharan style, perhaps from Hadda, Afghanistan
H. 51 x W. 30.5 x D. 12 cm ( 20 1/16 x 12 x 4 3/4 in. )
Harvard Art Museums / Arthur M. Sackler Museum
Buddha Shakyamuni | Pakistan, Gandhara region | 1-2 century | Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Head of a Bodhisattva
Gandhara period 3rd century-5th century
Lime composition with traces of polychrome
A row of Guge stupas near Tholing, in the tenth-century Kashmir-informed style, 2009 D [ Bendak//Peter van Ham ]
Temple room in Dungkar Cave 1, one of four caves that were residences of the Guge dynasty beginning in the twelfth century [ M. Beck/Peter van Ham ]
Peter van Ham’s Guge: Ages of Gold. The West Tibetan Masterpieces has just been published by Hirmer Verlag.
See also this very nice article.
An aniconic representation of Mara’s assault on the Buddha, Amaravati, India
2nd century CE
Dear Sangha Members and Friends of the Padmasambhava Buddhist Center,
I have the great privilege to share with you one of the most beautiful announcements that I can make: the longtime wishes and prayers of all the PBC members and devoted disciples of Ven. Khenchen Palden Sherab Rinpoche have been answered.
Recently, His Eminence Terton Namkha Drimed Rinpoche discovered the reincarnation of Ven. Khenchen Palden Sherab Rinpoche on the eighth day of this month, just two days ago. He was given the name Palden Yonten Thaye Lodro Chokyi Gyaltsen!
At Padma Samye Ling, the North American Monastery of PBC, we enjoyed a great celebration for the 10th Day of Guru Rinpoche, and all the gathered Sangha rejoiced in this announcement with tremendous joy and excitement.
Now that we have discovered the reincarnation of Ven. Khenchen Palden Sherab Rinpoche, H.E. Terton Namkha Drimed Rinpoche is requesting that everyone recite many Dusum Sangye prayers of Guru Padmasambhava. This is my wish as well. We pray for the continued success of all the Dharma activities of Khenchen Yangsi Rinpoche, that there are no obstacles and everything unfolds very smoothly, for the fulfillment of all of his wishes, and that he will benefit the Teachings and all sentient beings for aeons.
Yours in the Dharma,
Khenpo Tsewang Dongyal
Padma Samye Ling
10th Day of Guru Rinpoche
April 16, 2016
Womb Realm (garbhakosa-dhatu or taizōkai) mandala. Shingon tantric buddhist school, Heian period (794-1185), Tō-ji, Kyōto, Japan. National Treasure.
The center square represents the young stage of Vairocana. He is surrounded by eight Buddhas and bodhisattvas (clockwise from top: Ratnasambhava, Samantabhadra, Saṅkusumitarāja, Manjushri, Amitābha, Avalokiteśvara, Amoghasiddhi and Maitreya)
Kanō Yoshinobu | 1552-1640
Buddhist Sculpture Workshop, first half of 17th century
Detail of one of twenty-four hanging scrolls mounted on folding screens, ink and colors on paper, h 58 cm.
Just as a precious jewel, the sky, and water are by nature pure, likewise the tathagatagarbha or dharmadhatu is by nature always free from the defilement of the mental poisons and thus utterly pure. Whereas this is the meaning of the essence, the cause that completely purifies the adventitious defilements consists of devotion towards the Mahayana Dharma, of highest discriminative or analytical wisdom realizing the non-existence of a self, of limitless samadhi endowed with bliss, and of great compassion focusing on sentient beings as its point of reference. The realization arising from these [purifying causes] is to be known as enlightenment.
The Mahayana Uttaratantra Shastra with Commentary
translated by Rosemarie Fuchs page 119
Shambhala [ publisher ] description :
All sentient beings without exception have buddha nature—the inherent purity and perfection of the mind, untouched by changing mental states. Thus there is neither any reason for conceit in deeming oneself better than others nor any reason for self-contempt, thinking of oneself as inferior and unable to reach enlightenment. This seeing is obscured by veils which are removable and do not touch the inherent purity and perfection of the nature of the mind as such. The Mahayana Uttaratantra Shastra, one of the Five Treatises said to have been dictated to Asanga by the Bodhisattva Maitreya, presents the Buddha’s definitive teachings on how we should understand this ground of enlightenment and clarifies the nature and qualities of buddhahood.
Jamgön Kongtrül Lodro Thaye (1813–1899), the profoundly learned and realized master who compiled what are known as the “Five Great Treasures,” wrote the outstanding commentary to the Mahayana Uttaratantra Shastra translated here. Called The Unassailable Lion’s Roar, it presents Maitreya’s text as a background for the Mahamudra teachings in a way that is especially clear and easy to understand.
relic depicting footprint of the Buddha with Dharmachakra and triratna, 1st century CE, Gandhāra
thanks to @RareHistorical
The ultimate mode of being, the ground wherein both we and Guru Rinpoche are primordially inseparable – namely, the self arising primordial wisdom, which is subject to no movement of discursive thought — is referred to as Guru. Because deluded perceptions are themselves primordially pure, the path is free from all striving and the fruit is present spontaneously like a lotus in full flower. Therefore [the path itself] is referred to as Padma, or lotus. For the fruit is not something that occurs at a later stage as a result of the practice. In the ultimate expanse, which is self arising and spontaneously present, the primordial wisdom of self awareness is clearly [and already] manifest. This is referred to as Siddhi, or accomplishment. And, although in terms of conceptual distinctions the self arising primordial wisdom may be classified as ground, path, and fruit, these three are not different in nature. This is directly perceived by self-cognizing awareness and is indicated by the syllable Hung.
White Lotus: An Explanation of the Seven-Line Prayer to Guru Padmasambhava, by Jamgon Mipham
Nondistraction means not being lost in subtle undercurrents of delusion or indifferent stupor; it is immaculate, unending mindfulness. Not understanding this, if one is fearful and cautious about being distracted and is bound by a repressed, constricted mind, this is an error.
Natural, ordinary mind means this present mind unstained by either faults or good qualities. This self-nature is unstained by the continuity of awareness. Not understanding this, if one grasps at the substantiality of the rigid concepts of worldly, ordinary mind, this is an error.
To be meditationless means to enter profound, unconditioned natural space, detached from meditating and non-meditating, without any contrivance or aim, stabilizing the expansive fortress of mindfulness. Not understanding this, if one remains in ordinary, careless neutrality, or is lost in meaningless indifference, this is an error.
Sunlight Speech That Dispels the Darkness of Doubt, Sublime Prayers, Praises, and Practices of the Nyingma Masters : translated by Thinley Norbu