Archives for posts with tag: Tibetan Buddhism

9780190244958Komarovski, Yaroslav. Tibetan Buddhism and Mystical Experience. New York: Oxford University Press, 2015. (304 p. ISBN 978-0-19-024495-8)

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“In this book, Yaroslav Komarovski argues that the Tibetan Buddhist interpretations of the realization of ultimate reality both contribute to and challenge contemporary interpretations of unmediated mystical experience. The model used by the majority of Tibetan Buddhist thinkers states that the realization of ultimate reality, while unmediated during its actual occurrence, is necessarily filtered and mediated by the conditioning contemplative processes leading to it, and Komarovski argues that therefore, in order to understand this mystical experience, one must focus on these processes, rather than on the experience itself. Read the rest of this entry »

9780199391219DiValerio, David. The Holy Madmen of Tibet. New York: Oxford University Press, 2015. (352 p. ISBN 978-0-19-939121-9)

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“Throughout the past millennium, certain Tibetan Buddhist yogins have taken on profoundly norm-overturning modes of dress and behavior, including draping themselves in human remains, consuming filth, provoking others to violence, and even performing sacrilege. They became known far and wide as “madmen” (smyon pa, pronounced nyönpa), achieving a degree of saintliness in the process. This book offers the first comprehensive study of Tibet’s “holy madmen” drawing on their biographies and writings, as well as tantric commentaries, later histories, oral traditions, and more.

Much of The Holy Madmen of Tibet is dedicated to examining the lives and legacies of the three most famous “holy madmen” who were all of the Kagyü sect: the Madman of Tsang (author of The Life of Milarepa), the Madman of Ü, and Drukpa Künlé, Madman of the Drukpa Kagyü. Each born in the 1450s, they rose to prominence during a period of civil war and of great shifts in Tibet’s religious culture. Read the rest of this entry »

9780415719117Lopes, Ana Cristina. Tibetan Buddhism in Diaspora: Cultural Re-signification in Practice and Institutions. Routledge Critical Studies in Buddhism. New York: Routledge, 2015 (266 p. ISBN 978-0-415-71911-7)

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“The imperialist ambitions of China – which invaded Tibet in the late 1940s – have sparked the spectacular spread of Tibetan Buddhism worldwide, and especially in western countries. This work is a study on the malleability of a particular Buddhist tradition; on its adaptability in new contexts. The book analyses the nature of the Tibetan Buddhism in the Diaspora. It examines how the re-signification of Tibetan Buddhist practices and organizational structures in the present refers back to the dismantlement of the Tibetan state headed by the Dalai Lama and the fragmentation of Tibetan Buddhist religious organizations in general. It includes extensive multi-sited fieldwork conducted in the United States, Brazil, Europe, and Asia and a detailed analysis of contemporary documents relating to the global spread of Tibetan Buddhism. Read the rest of this entry »