Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Nine Successive Stages…The Nine Yanas of Bon

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Dzogchen Explorations

Okar Research

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"Thegpa Rimgu'i Bon (Theg pa rim dgu'i Bon), "The Bon of the Nine Successive Stages [or simply] 'The Nine Ways of Bon'". The first four are the cause (rGyud kyi theg pa) the next four are the ways of result ('Bras bu'i theg pa) and the ninth is the Great Perfection (rDzogs chen). Examined individually their subject matters are as follows: (http://bon-encyclopedia.wikispaces.com/four+causal+vehicles)

1)" The Way of the Shen of Prediction: Mo (prediction), rTsis (astrology), gTo (ritual) and dPhyad (examination of causes)....Chashen (The way of the Shen of Prediction)...comprises medical diagnosis (dpyad) and the performing of healing rituals (gto), as well as various ancient divination (mo) and astrological and geomantic calculations (rtsis) performed by the shaman to determine whether the person who needs to be healed has an energetic imbalance, or is being provoked by a demonic spirit, or negative energy.... Literally theg pa means a vehicle or conveyance, rather than a road or a way. gShen, a word of obscure origin and meaning, can here be translated as "practice" or "practitioner" according to the Lopon. And the term phywa means prediction or prognostication."
Chashen thegpa (Phywa-gshen theg-pa), the Way of the Shen of Prediction, describes four different ways of prediction, by divination (mo), astrology (rtsis), ritual (gto) and examination of causes (dphyad).
The Way of the Practice of Prediction (phywa gshen theg pa): Literally theg-pa means a vehicle or conveyance, rather than a road or a way. gShen, a word of obscure origin and meaning, can here be translated as "practice" or "practitioner" according to the Lopon. And the term phywa means prediction or prognostication. This way or vehicle is principally concerned with divination (mo), astrological and geomantic calculations (rtsis), medical diagnosis (dpyad), and the performing of healing rituals (gto).,,http://bon-encyclopedia.wikispaces.com/southerntr

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2)" The way of the Shen of the Visual World: nature and origin of entities....Nangshen (The Way of the Shen of the Visible World)....comprises various rituals for purification to summon energy and enhance prosperity, to suppress and liberate negative forces, and to invoke and make offerings to powerful deities and pay ransoms to demonic spirits. This way is principally concerned with visible manifestations (snang ba) perceived as positive manifestations of the activities of the gods (lha) who come to the aid of humanity. Therefore, the emphasis is placed on invoking the gods (lha gsol ba) for their aid. This includes such classes of deities as the Thugs dkar, the sGra bla, the Wer ma, and so on."
Nangshen thegpa (sNang-gshen theg-pa), the Way of the Shen of Visible Manifestation, expounds the origin and nature of gods and demons living in this world and various methods of exorcism and ransom.
The Way of the Practice of Visible Manifestations (snang gshen theg pa): This way is principally concerned with visible manifestations (snang ba) perceived as positive manifestations of the activities of the gods (lha) who come to the aid of humanity. Therefore, the emphasis is placed on invoking the gods (lha gsol ba) for their aid. This includes such classes of deities as the Thugs dkar, the sGra bla, the Wer ma, and so on.....http://bon-encyclopedia.wikispaces.com/southerntr

3) "The Way of the Shen of Illusion: For disposing of adverse powers....Trulshen (The Way of the Shen of 'Magical' Illusion)....concerned with magical rituals to ensure prosperity and control over the spirits evoked, especially the rites of exorcism (sel ba) to eliminate negative energy and the negative provocations of evil spirits (gdon) who come to disturb human existence. The practitioner works with these energies in terms of evocation, conjuration, and application (bsnyen sgrub las gsum)."
Trulshen thegpa ('Phrul-gshen theg-pa), the Way of the Shen of Magical Power, explains rites for disposing of adverse powers.
The Way of the Practice of Magical Power ('phrul gshen theg pa): This way is principally concerned with magical rituals to ensure prosperity and control over the spirits evoked, especially the rites of exorcism (sel ba) to eliminate negative energy and the negative provocations of evil spirits (gdon) who come to disturb human existence. The practitioner works with these energies in terms of evocation, conjuration, and application (bsnyen sgrub las gsum)...... http://bon-encyclopedia.wikispaces.com/southerntr

4)" The Way of the Shen of Existence: Bardo and guiding one through death..... Sichen (The way of the Shen of Existence).... "existence" (srid pa) properly means the processes of death and rebirth. This way is also known as 'Dur gshen, the practice of ceremonies for exorcising ('dur) the spirits of the dead who are disturbing the living. It is, therefore, principally concerned with the three hundred and sixty kinds of rites for accomplishing this, as well as methods for ensuring the good fortune and the long life of the living....contains a detailed explanation of the principle of the la (soul), yid (mind), and sem (thinking mind). The la is the karmic trace, which is stored in the kunzhi namshe, (or base consciousness). The sem follows the karmic trace and produces blissful, painful and neutral experiences which are experienced by the yid."
Sishen thegpa (Srid-gshen theg-pa), the Way of the Shen of Existence, deals with the after-death state (bar-do) and with methods for guiding sentient beings towards liberation or at least towards a better rebirth.
The Way of the Practice of Existence (srid gshen theg pa): Here "existence" (srid pa) properly means the processes of death and rebirth. This way is also known as 'Dur gshen, the practice of ceremonies for exorcising ('dur) the spirits of the dead who are disturbing the living. It is, therefore, principally concerned with the three hundred and sixty kinds of rites for accomplishing this, as well as methods for ensuring the good fortune and the long life of the living. These four represent the Four Causal Ways of Bon (bon rgyu'i theg pa bzhi). These are followed by the higher ways of a more spiritual nature, whose goal is liberation and enlightenement, which are collectively known as the Fruitional Ways ('bras-bu'i theg pa)....http://bon-encyclopedia.wikispaces.com/southerntr

5) The Way of the Virtuous Followers: Guides those who follow this path....Genyen thegpa (dGe-snyen theg-pa), the Way of Virtuous Lay Practitioners, guides those who apply the ten virtues and ten perfections.
The Way of the Virtuous Lay Practitioners (dge bsnyen theg pa): This way is principally concerned with morality and ethics, such as the ten virtuous deeds (dge ba bcu), the ten Perfections or Paramitas, and so on, as well as pious activities such as erecting stupas, and so on.....http://bon-encyclopedia.wikispaces.com/southerntr

6) The Way of the Sages: Rules of monastic discipline....Drangsong thegpa (Drang-srong theg-pa), the Way of the Sages, contains the rules of monastic discipline....
The Way of the Ascetic Sages (drang srong theg pa): The term drang srong (Skt. rishi), meaning a sage, has here the technical significance of a fully ordained monk who has taken the full complement of vows, corresponding to the Buddhist bhikshu (dge slong). The principal concern is with the vows of the monk and the rules of the monastic discipline ('dul ba). .....http://bon-encyclopedia.wikispaces.com/southerntr

7) The Way of Pure Sound: Higher tantric practice, ritual and mandala....Akar thegpa (A-dkar theg-pa), the Way of the White A, explains the practices and rituals of the higher Tantras.....WHITE 'A'..."O great White Light of (the letter) A of the womb of space"(Nalanda Translation Committee: Lopez:1997..pg 403)....The seventh level in the Nine Ways of Bon is the Way of the White Letter A (A-dkar theg-pa). (Snellgrove:1967)....."A' represents the unconditioned primordial state, the natural state of mind; it is white to represent the innate purity of mind." (Wangyal: 1993..pg 41)..."The Seventh Vehicle is 'The White A'. The sacred A is the symbol of the 'Pure Sound'...the origin of all earthly sounds and of all effects in the phenomenal world." (Hoffman: 1975...pg 110)...
Akar thegpa (A-dkar theg-pa), the Way of the White A, explains the practices and rituals of the higher Tantras.
The Way of the White A (A dkar theg pa): This way is principally concerned with the Tantric practice of transformation by way of visualizing oneself as the meditation deity and the practices associated with the mandala. Here are included both the Lower Tantras and the Higher Tantras......http://bon-encyclopedia.wikispaces.com/southerntr

8) The Way of the Primeval Shen: Matters of practice and behaviour...Yeshen thegpa (Ye-gshen theg-pa), the Way of the Primordial Shen, stresses the need for a suitable teacher, place and occasion for Tantric practices, explains the mandala in greater detail as well as instructions for deity meditation.
The Way of the Primordial Shen (ye gshen theg pa): This way is concerned with certain secret Tantric practices includung the proper relationship with the Guru and with the Tantric consort, as well as with the methodologies of the Generation Process (bskyed rim) and the Perfection Process (rdzogs rim) and the conduct connected with them.......http://bon-encyclopedia.wikispaces.com/southerntr

9) The Supreme Way: Attainment of rDzogs-chen, the Great Perfection.....Way of Supreme Doctrine or The Way of Dzogchen (Bla-med theg-pa) enshrines Dzogchen.......Lame thegpa (bLa-med theg-pa), the Unsurpassed Way, is concerned with the highest attainment through the path of Great Perfection (i.e., rDzogs-chen).
The Ultimate Way (bla med theg pa): This ultimate and unsurpassed (bla na med pa) way is comprised of the teachings and practices of Dzogchen, the Great Perfection, which describes the process of enlightenment in terms of the Base, the Path, and the Fruit, as well as the practice of contemplation in terms of the view, the meditations, and the conduct. ......http://bon-encyclopedia.wikispaces.com/southerntr

Buddha Tönpa Shenrab teaching subjects such as medicine, divination, astrology, and ritual.....http://ravencypresswood.com/category/sacred-scriptures/

"In chapter seventeen of the Mdo ’dus, there is a list of the Nine Ways of Bon or the nine methods for teaching the doctrines of Bon…. I would therefore argue that most of the names of the eight brothers of Shenrab Miwo as listed in the Mdo ’dus are derived from the doctrinal system of the Nine Ways of Bon." (page 18)".....http://balkhandshambhala.blogspot.com/2013/12/kalsang-gurung-shenrabs-dmu-ancestors.html

Nyingma Tradition........"Nine Yanas (Tib. ཐེག་པ་དགུ་, Wyl. theg pa dgu) or nine successive vehicles (Tib. ཐེག་པ་རིམ་པ་དགུ་, Wyl. theg pa rim pa dgu) — within the Nyingma tradition, the full spectrum of spiritual paths is divided into nine yanas, a system of practice bringing together all the approaches of the Buddha’s teaching into a single comprehensive path to enlightenment....three yanas related to the outer vehicle of leading from the origin [of suffering] and the three pitakas of characteristics, three yanas related to the inner vehicle of Vedic asceticism and the three outer classes of tantra, and three yanas related to the secret vehicle of powerful transformative methods and the three inner classes of tantra."....http://www.lotsawahouse.org/tibetan-masters/alak-zenkar/nine-yanas

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Email....okarresearch@gmail.com

John Hopkins.....Northern New Mexico….March 2013

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