Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Dorje: aka...Vajra, Thunderbolt, Diamond, Indra


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DORJE: "Vajra (Devanagari: वज्र; Chinese: 金剛 jīngāng; Korean: 금강저 geumgangjeo; Tibetan: རྡོ་རྗེ། dorje; Dzongkha (Bhutan): dorji; Japanese: 金剛杵 kongōsho) is a Sanskrit word meaning both thunderbolt and diamond. It is also a common male name in Tibet and Bhutan. Additionally, it is a symbolic ritual object that symbolizes both the properties of a diamond (indestructibility) and a thunderbolt (irresistible force)……The vajra is used symbolically by the Dharma traditions of Buddhism, Jainism and Hinduism, often to represent firmness of spirit and spiritual power. The use of the vajra as a symbolic and ritual tool spread from India along with Indian religion and culture to other parts of East and Southeast Asia."

"The earliest mention of the Vajra is in the Rigveda, a part of four Vedas. It is described as the weapon of Indra, the god of heaven and the chief deity of the Rigvedic pantheon. Indra is described as using the Vajra to kill sinners and ignorant persons. The Rigveda states that the weapon was made for Indra by Tvastar, the maker of divine instruments. The associated story describes Indra using the Vajra, which he held in his hand, to slay the Asura Vritra, who took the form of a serpent……..On account of his skill in wielding the Vajra, some epithets used for Indra in the Rigveda were Vajrabhrit (bearing the bolt), Vajrivat or Vajrin (armed with the bolt), Vajradaksina (holding the bolt in his right hand), and Vajrabahu or Vajrahasta (holding the Vajra in his hand). The association of the Vajra with Indra was continued with some modifications in the later Puranic literature, and in Buddhist works. Buddhaghosa, a major figure of Theravada Buddhism in the 5th century, identified the Bodhisattva Vajrapani with Indra."….

"In Buddhism the vajra is the symbol of Vajrayana, one of the three major branches of Buddhism. Vajrayana is translated as "Thunderbolt Way" or "Diamond Way" and can imply the thunderbolt experience of Buddhist enlightenment or bodhi. It also implies indestructibility just as diamonds are harder than other gemstones…….In Tantric Buddhism (Vajrayana) the vajra and ghanta (bell) are used in many rites by a lama or any Vajrayana practitioner of sadhanas. The dorje is a male polysemic symbol that represents many things for the tantrika. The vajra is representative of upaya whereas its companion tool, the bell which is a female symbol, denotes prajna. Some deities are shown holding each the vajra and bell in separate hands, symbolizing the union of the forces of compassion and wisdom, respectively.

"….Tantric Buddhism makes use of the hexagram, a combination of two triangles. The masculine triangle, which points upward, represents the phallus, and the downward-pointing, feminine triangle the vagina. Both of these sexual organs are highly revered in the rituals and meditations of Tantrism……Another highly significant symbol for the masculine force and the phallus is a symmetrical ritual object called the vajra. As the divine virility is pure and unshakable, the vajra is described as a “diamond” or “jewel”. As a “thunderbolt” it is one of the lightning symbols. Everything masculine is termed vajra. It is thus no surprise that the male seed is also known as vajra. The Tibetan translation of the Sanskrit word is dorje, which also has additional meanings, all of which are naturally associated with the masculine half of the universe."….http://www.trimondi.de/SDLE/Part-1-02.htm

"(In Tibetan rdo-rje, "lord of stones") An ultimately untranslatable Sanskrit word meaning diamond, adamantine, or thunderbolt, connoting immutability, unbreakability, and ultimate power. The vajra symbolized the supreme power of Indra in Vedic India and was used punitively by that god of war and storm. Universal Vehicle Buddhism transvalued it into a symbol of great compassion, the strongest power in the universe. In Tantric art and ritual it symbolizes compassion as great bliss consciousness, with its companion bell representing the wisdom of the void, the male organ with the bell as the female, and the magic-body with the bell as the clear light." Origin: Sanskrit…..Source: Mandala: The Architecture of Enlightenment, Denise Patry Leidy, Robert A. F. Thurman. New York: Asia Society Galleries, Boston, Shambala: Tibet House, 1997. Copyright Asia Society Galleries, Tibet House, 1997. Source: Asia Source / Asia Reference

Zeus/Jupiter......with the Dorje or Cosmic Thunderbolt.

"The Vajra, thunderbolt, which Usana Kavya is said to have fashioned, as also Tvastri in RV 1 .32.2, was Indra's exclusive weapon and on account of his skill in wielding it, he is called in RV Vajrabhrit, bearing the bolt, Vajrivat, armed with the bolt. Vajradaksina, holding the bolt in his right hand, Vajrabahu or Vajrahasta, holding the Vajra in his hand, or Vajrin, armed with the bolt, which is the commoner epithet of them all. Not much information about the shape of Vajra is available in the RV. However, it is said that it was made of iron, and that it belonged to the category of the weapons called the astras i.e. those weapons which are operated by throwing."

"Bardo, Second Day: ….."Listen without distraction. On the second day, a white light, the purified element of water, will shine, and at the same time Blessed Vajrasattva-Aksobhya will appear before you from the blue eastern Realm of Complete Joy. His body is blue in color, he holds a five-pointed vajra in his hand and sits on an elephant throne, embracing his consort Buddha-Locana. He is accompanied by the two male bodhisattvas Ksitigarbha and Maitreya and the two female bodhisattvas Lasya and Puspa, so that six Buddha forms appear. ....... The white light of the Skanda of form in its basic purity, the mirror-like wisdom, dazzling white, luminous and clear, will come towards you from the heart of Vajrasattva and his consort and pierce you so that your eyes cannot bear to look at it. At the same time, together with the wisdom light, the soft smoky light of hell-beings will also come towards you and pierce you. At that time, under the influence of aggression, you will be terrified and escape from the brilliant white light, but you will feel an emotion of pleasure towards the soft smoky light of the hell-beings. At that moment do not be afraid of the sharp, brilliant, luminous and clear white light, but recognize it as wisdom. Be drawn to it with faith and longing, and supplicate it, thinking, "It is the light-ray of Blessed Vajrasattva's compassion, I take refuge in it." It is Blessed Vajrasattva coming to invite you in the terrors of the bardo; it is the light-ray hook of Vajrasattva's compassion, so feel longing for it. ….Do not take pleasure in the soft smoky light of the hell-beings. This is the inviting path of your neurotic veils, accumulated by violent aggression. If you are attracted to it you will fall down into hell, and sink into the muddy swamp of unbearable suffering from which there is never any escape. It is an obstacle blocking the path of liberation, so do not look at it, but give up aggression. Do not be attracted to it, do not yearn for it. Feel longing for the luminous, brilliant, white light, and say this inspiration-prayer with intense concentration on Blessed Vajrasattva….."

"On the surface of this boulder we find a number of intriguing depictions. They include a mounted figure, a standing figure wielding a bow or spear, three dorjes (ritual thunderbolt of Vayrayana), concentric circles and two unidentified bi-circular designs. The bi-circular petrogylphs containing various design elements are the oldest figures on this boulder as indicated by the substantial repatination they have underwent (considerably more than the other figures). Recalling generative eggs, masks and mandalas, it would seem that they represent an important pre-Buddhist cultural theme by virtue of the subsequent carving of the dorjes on the same rock. http://www.asianart.com/articles/rockart/16.html

" the ithyphallic [having an erect penis] depictions of solitary male deities and dancing Vajrayogini figures…..There are five main examples of ithyphallic deities: Vajrabhairava, Yama Dharmaraja, Black Jambhala, Ganapati, and Mahadeva (Shiva). Each is generally depicted alone, though Mahadeva is often flanked by the consort Uma Devi; some paintings depict the deity holding his erect member in his left hand. Ganapati, a deity of peculiar persuasion, is occasionally befriended by a female monkey while in the aroused state…..According to function and the classification of the Four Tantric Activities of Vajrayana Buddhism, these deities all perform either "powerful" or "wrathful" activities. The aroused state depicts both literally and symbolically an intense desire and passion to accomplish a specific task. In the case of Black Jambhala and Ganapati, the focus is on gaining wealth; for the red forms of Ganapati and Mahadeva, it is wealth and power; and for the meditational deity Vajrabhairava and the special protector Yama Dharmaraja, the symbolism relates to the intensity of their wrathfulness in overcoming ego and obstacles to reaching enlightenment. ….One form of Ganapati known as Ragavajra, introduced to Tibet by Atisha in the 11th century, would likely be classified x-rated by most Western standards. In this example Ganapati is depicted dallying with a monkey, which is performing fellatio on him."…..http://www.tricycle.com/blog/himalayan-buddhist-art-101-controversial-art-part-3-ithyphallic-deities

"The main temple in the temple complex at 'Jageshwar Mahadev' is dedicated to ‘Bal Jageshwar’, or the Child Shiva. There is also a temple dedicated to Vridh Jageshwar, or Old Shiva, situated on the higher slopes. According to tradition, Lord Shiva came to meditate here, and when the women of the village came to know of this, they immediately left their household chores to have his darshan. When the men of the village heard of this, they were infuriated and came to see who is this sadhu who has captivated their women. Seeing the commotion, Shiva took the form of a child...."...http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jageshwar



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



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