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Contents of Creative Symbols of the Tantric Path - Unchecked

DISCLAIMER - This transcript has not been checked by Sangharakshita, and may contain mistakes and mishearings. Checked and reprinted copies of all seminars will be available as part of the Complete Works Project.

by Sangharakshita

Study Group Leaders' Questions and Answers on:

"Creative Symbols of the Tantric Path to Enlightenment"
Contents
THE TIBETAN WHEEL OF LIFE
1/2Suitable background reading on the Tantra in general
2/10The symbol
10/11Alternative terms for Tantric Buddhism
11The Red, Black and Yellow seeds
12The seeds in the Alaya
13/16The asuras and negative competitiveness among male Order Members
The Asura mode - power mode par excellence
Identity and territory co-operation rather than competition
16/26Devas, humans, and artistic creativity
Suffering and creativity
20Therapeutic art
2/26Devas and dhyanas - positive volitional states
24Dukkha
THE SYMBOLISM OF THE STUPA
27/29The Significance of the Buddha's Nirvana
29The origin of the Buddha's instructions for the stupa
30/32Stupa visualisation practice in the Movement
32/36Akasa - space is a concept, a mode of perception
36/37The Tantric elements that were omitted in the lecture
Bija mantras, chakra meditations
37/38Two elements of Rupa as the objective content of the perceptual
situation
38Transcendental perception of Rupa
39Continuing to respect one's teacher
Sariputta and the Buddha - reasons for rebuke
40/42Predicting people's response to the teaching of the Dharma
42/46Initiation - abhiseka, wangkur
Passing on energy
45/46Introducing the Yidam
46/49Gaining Enlightenment through the Tantras, lower and higher
48/49Is the Anuttara Yoga relevant to the WBO?
49/51Re-affirming one's Going for Refuge
THE SYMBOLISM OF THE SACRED THUNDERBOLT
OR DIAMOND SCEPTRE OF THE LAMAS
52/53With or without catastrophe - the spiritual path
53/57Breaking through - shattering experiences
Intensity of practice
55Hatha and Raja Yoga
56/57Working intensely - with insight
58The trampling of the Bodhisattvas!
59Sexual symbolism of the vajra, bell and lotus
59Using the term 'oneness'
60Querying the term 'ground of being'
61/62Correlating the Buddhas, wisdoms, elements and skandhas
62/64Dualities in the vajra
Yin, yang and balance
64/65Use of the vajra and vajra bell within the Movement
65/67Sacramental
Plotinus, the Neoplatonic writers and Theurgy
Evoking Tara
THE SYMBOLISM OF THE COSMIC REFUGE TREE AND
THE ARCHETYPAL GURU
68/69Communication of lay people in the Buddha's time
Are lay people included in the Sangha in the Pali Canon?
69The three synonyms for Enlightenment in the Majjhima Nikaya
70/73The meaning of the Dakini Refuge
Spiritually stimulating company
73/74The Sangha in Tibetan Buddhism
74The Yidam - using the term
75/76The Yidam - choosing
Dhardo Rimpoche and divination
Synchronicity
77/78The Tantric Guru - Bhante and the Movement
78/80Experiencing one's Guru as Buddha
The story of the dog's tooth
79/80Continuing the lineage Root gurus
80/81Lineage and the future of the WBO
82/84The debasement of progressive organisation of practice in the Buddhist
tradition
Keeping in touch with the original principles
84/86The Refuge Tree as a lifetime's study
Prostration practice
86/87The Refuge Tree as archetype of evolution
87/88The Dharmapalas of the Refuge Tree
88Is there a Milarepa practice?
88/89Prajnaparamita - a place amidst the texts?
89/90The central position - Milarepa. Tsongkapa, Vajradhara
THE SYMBOLISM OF THE CREMATION GROUND
AND THE CELESTIAL MAIDENS
91/92Personal cremation grounds - the crucial situation
92/93Weeping at the time of death
93/96The ten stages of decomposition of the corpse
The bone sign - ugha(?) nimitta
96/99Companions in the cremation ground
Crucial situations
99/100Are Dakinis amoral?
100Dakinis as energy
101/104Padmasambhava teaching the Dakinis
Dealing with one's moods
104.105Sarvabuddhadakini
105/106Beauty as fashion
106/108The impact of the less alluring dakinis
Animal deities
108/109Women's attraction to the Dakini image
109/111Indian Order members attitude to the Mahayana and Tantric images
111Padmasambhava's Heruka form
112The damaru
113/114Identifying a thanka offered by Surata
Ganesh or Ganapati
THE SYMBOLISM OF OFFERINGS AND SELF SACRIFICE
115/116The recollection of death as a practice for mitras
116/117Simplifying or westernising the offering of the Mandala practice
117/118Offerings - the inner, outer and secret
The wrathful Vajrapani in public view
119/123Special pujas and their suitability
Resistance to the three and the sevenfold puja
123/125The chod practice and its applicability
THE SYMBOLISM OF COLOURS AND MANTRIC SOUND
126Letters of the Sanskrit alphabet
126/131Neoplatonism and the 'Rite of Fascination' - Beauty
128Plotinus and altruism
128/129The three vimoksamukkas and 'Subha'
131/132'Green' and Going for Refuge
132/133'Blue', the Medicine Buddha and Tara
133/137Development of Tibetan Tantra in Indian literature
137/141Vajrayana practices in the FWBO
Vajrayana practices - a quicker path to Enlightenment?
141Classification of mantras
142/147Mantras and Going for Refuge
146Nichiren and other religions
147/148Adisthana and Abhisheka
148/149Subtle sight and subtle hearing
149/150'Clashing' mantras
150Description of the Manjughosa practice
THE MANDALA OF THE FIVE BUDDHAS 'MALE' AND 'FEMALE'
151Recommended reading
151/153The five vimoksa dvaras - further correlations
153/156The Rupakaya and Nirmanakaya
156/157Sambhogakaya - the body of mutual delight
157/158Svabhavikskaya
Vajrasattva - Adi-Buddha
158/159The Nyingmapa Trikaya
The stupa at Borobodur - the unfinished Buddha
159/160Background information on mandala figures
160/161Historical development of the Buddhas representing aspects of
Enlightenment
161/162The hundred syllable mantra and the five Buddha families
162/163The Khadga family - the sword family
163The colour of Tara
164/165Ratnasambhava and colour in Buddhism
165/167Tulkus
167/170Alternative terms for 'Going for Refuge'
170/171The Brahmacarya vow and Going for Refuge
171/173The background to the series
...

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