G. W. Farrow • I. Menon The Concealed Essence of the Hevajra Tantra With the Commentrary Yogaratnamala G.W. FARROW and I MENON MOTILAL. Shri Hevajra is a principal meditational deity of the Anuttarayoga classification in Buddhist Tantra. According to the Sakya system Hevajra belongs to the. हेवज्र तन्त्रम – संस्कृत मूल एवम हिन्दी अनुवाद (The Hevajra Tantra). Item Code: NAC Cover: Hardcover. Edition: Publisher.

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Search the history of over billion web pages on the Internet. Vajra Family 3 2. Consecration by the Deity 47 5.

True Principle 49 6. Application of the Vow 61 7. Secret Sign Language 71 8. Circle of the Yogini 83 9. Rite of Establishing Sanctity 2. Definition of the Accomplishment 3.

Fundamentals of All Tantras 4. Manifestation of the Mandala of Hevajra 6. Painting the Portrait of Hevajra 7. Book and Feast yevajra. Arrangement of Mantras Recitation of Mantras Means to Attain the Innate I have lived in India and Nepal for fifteen years and during my stay there I was introduced to various Hindu and Buddhist sects. This contact has given me a broad view and a lasting interest in the practice of yoga and in the literature of the various sects to which these yogis belong. Since coming into contact with my co-translator and editor I.

Menon our research into the tantric methods of practice led to the study of both Hindu and Buddhist tantric literature. We have translated some pre- viously untranslated tantric works. In addition to the translation pre- sented here we have translated later Hindu tantric works such as the Saktapramoda, Syamarahasyam.

Tararahasyam, Yogakamika, Sarvollasa Tantra etc. For the most part the Hindu tantric works we examined were concerned with cosmology, the different grades of practitioners and their hevajrs styles of practice, the rituals for propitiating a variety of male and female deities, the rites of magic, Kundalim yoga and the definition of the nature of the gum and the realised practitioner.

Among hevaajra existing Hindu tantric works we found that the most interesting are those belonging to the Kashmiri Saiva tradition, especially those of the Kashmiri tantrika, Abhinavagupta, some texts of the Snvidya tradition and texts belonging to the Natha Y ogi sect. However, many basic questions regarding the foundations of the tantric method still remained to be conclusively answered.

Namely, why male and female deities?

Why certain colors and forms for these deities? Why and what are the families kula of deities? How are these families able to transform the manifested natures? Why is it necessary to propi- tiate and visualise the forms of the deities and their mandalas? What is meant by ‘the complete union’ and how is the fruit of that union defined? In the course of our research we were first introduced to the text of the Yogaratnamala by way of the critical version published in the Roman script in Professor D.

This critical version has drawn upon manuscripts deposited in the archive libraries of Cambridge and Kathmandu. We are indebted to Professor Snellgrove for making available the critical texts of both the Hevajra Tantra and the Yogaratnamala. Readings of the Hevajra Tantra and Yogaratnamala established that these texts contained definitive information regarding the principles of tantric theory, practice and experience.

Therefore, we decided to trans- late both the Hevajra Tantra and tatnra Y ogaratnamala. In orderto commence our research and translation work we obtained photo-copies of other versions of rantra two texts as well as copies of various other Buddhist Tantric texts from the National Archives of the Government of Nepal.

We consulted the twelfth century, incomplete text of the Yogaratnamala deposited in the Royal Asiatic Society in Calcutta. In order to clarify some parts of the root text and the commentary we also consulted a photo- copy of a manuscript of Ratnakarasanti’s Muktavali hdvajra is another commentary on the Hevajra Tantra. The Muktavali incorporates and amplifies the interpretation found in the Yogaratnamala. The Hevajra Tantra dates from approximately the eighth century A.


Hevajra Tantra

The treatise is composed of discourses between the Bhagavan Buddha and his disciple Vajragarbha. In the second part there are dis- courses between the Bhagavan and his consort as well. These discourses are the vehicle which introduce the theory, practice and experience of the Krama, the Processes of the Buddhist tantric method.

This opening state- ment of doctrine begins with the crucial phrase evam maya srutam Thus have I heard. The Fundamental Statement is the source for the expose” of the Upaya, the Means, the modes of practice which are introduced and outlined in the first chapter and which are then further explained and elaborated in the rest of the treatise. This Fundamental Statement and the tantric system of language which is contained within it’s composition will be explained and discussed in the Introduction.

The Yogaratnamala also known as the Hevajra Panjika was written around the ninth century A. The Yogaratnamala was written in the Panjika style by the pandit Preface ix and Mahasiddha, Krsnacarya. Because the Yogaratnamala is written in the Panjika style, where words or phrases from successive units of the root treatise are taken and commented upon, we decided to translate the Hevajra Tantra and the Yogaratnamala simultaneously.

Bearing this idea of compositional style in mind and also in order to thoroughly highlight the unique material found in both texts we have melded both texts so that they can be read together. The root treatise has been broken up to form units of related subject matter.

A Safe Guide for the Practitioner of Hevajra Tantra

These units, transcribed in the Roman script are presented together with the English translation to facilitate the easy comprehension of the material which is being commented upon. Also, by this method of translating with an important commentary, the views of the commentator, Krsnacarya, as found in the commentary, play a crucial role in the hevajrra tone and thrust of the translation of the more difficult, terse and understated style of the root treatise.

Many of the technical hevajrz found in the Hevajra Tantra are to be found in earlier Hmayana and Mahayana works.

However, we have translated technical terms according to the Vajrayana view by following Krsnacarya’s analysis of these terms. In the glossary we have explained the reasoning for our translation of gantra terms such as Samvara, Samadhi etc. The Hevajra Tantra, like other Buddhist tantras, is written without too much attention to the rales of classical Sanskrit grammar.

This unsophisticated style accords with the view on compositional style found in the Pradipodyotana commentary on the Guhyasamaja Tantra and the Vimalaprabha commentary on the Hevajar Tantra. Nevertheless, the writer or writers of this treatise have composed a sophisticated work in txntra of the subject matter found in the treatise. The root treatise conveys, without unnecessary tantrx, fundamental information regard- ing the processes of the tantric method.

Sometimes the vernacular of that era has been utilised to define crucial views regarding the tantric method. The straightforward approach which we employed in the trans- lation of these texts was influenced by the unsophisticated but essential compositional style of Buddhist tantras. Who were the Mahasiddhas? What was special about their era?

The Mahasiddhas or Great Accomplishers were the synthesizers and system- atzers of the tantric tradition during the classic tantric period between the fifth century and tantrs thirteenth century A.

They were the foremost exponents of the tantric method by virtue of their own direct personal experience of the instructions given to them by their own gurus. This made them particularly suited tq define the style and conduct of the tantric method.

Full text of “Hevajra Tantra Snellgrove”

They were the founders of the seven instruction lineages The Concealed Essence of the Hevajra Tantra x which are held to-day by the Tibetan Buddhist Kargyupa, Saskyapa and Gelugpa sects. The oldest Buddhist sect of Tibet, the Nyingmapa, includes many methods of these Mahasiddha tatra but relies mainly on the methods transmitted by Guru Rinpoche, Padmasambhava, and on the later body of hidden texts which are discovered and revealed from time to time.


The tantric system of the Mahasiddhas was tantrra out of the refined use of a variety of practices found in other traditions as hevajrw as the evolution of mainstream Buddhist practices. With this inclusive attitude the Mahasiddhas were able to attract a very wide tanttra of followers from all social contexts.

The existing religious practices of these followers were sometimes utilized but were adapted and refined by the adoption of the tantric view of the Wisdom and Means method. The Mahasiddhas were the innovators with and the refiners of, existent social and religious conditions and were therefore the continuers of indigenous Indian cultural continuity because of their inclusive attitude. However, due to this contact with and conversion of previously non-Buddhist groups many non-Buddhist methods were synthesized and introduced into the Buddhist mainstream.

This is demonstrated in the Hevajra Tantra where Hindu deities such as Brahma etc. In this hevajfa the ancient shamanistic yoga tradition which pre-dates the arrival of the Aryans in the sub- continent was assimilated and refined to suit the needs of the Buddhist tantric yogis.

In terms of the systematization of the tantric method, the texts of the Mahasiddhas translated into Tibetan which are collected in the Tangyur and Kangyur as well as in existing Sanskrit manuscripts attest to their work in tahtra field. The Six Y ogas of Naropa are well known in this context. The influence of the Eighty-four Siddhas can be noted in existing Hindu sects such as the Natha Y ogi sect, the Dattatreya cult and the Naga yogis of the Dasanami sannyasins.

Their influence is even felt in the later Vaisnava sects found in Northern and Eastern India as well as in the Sikh religion. This influence is seen through the use of yoga practices which originate from the Natha yogi sect as well as the incorporation of the Sahajaview of earlier Buddhist sects. These kinds of yoga practices and views are principal themes found in some of the songs and poems of Kabir and his peers.

Similar kinds of songs and poems are also to be found in other works of the North Indian Sant tradition. The tradition of expressing religious concepts in the vernacular as against the literati, Sanskrit and elite caste tradition of the orthodox Brahmins was taken to it’s logical conclusion by Tulasi Das in his classic Hindi formulation of the Ramayana. In this manner the influence of the non-elitist tantric masters can be definitely felt in the development of the Sant tradition.

Today, itinerant members ofthe Baul sect of Bengal still sing Sahaja songs. The tradition of religious vernacular song is an ancient method of teaching the theories of yoga to the common man by way of allegories contained in the songs. In the sub-continent of India some ofthe earliest hevvajra examples of this tradition are the early Buddhist gathas and the carya songs of the Mahasiddhas. However, this oral tradition should be considered as much older than these Buddhist songs.

Krsnacarya was born into the Brahmin caste in eastern India. His gum was Jalandhara. A prophecy stated that a yogi like him had not appeared before nor would anotherlike him appear again.

In his carya songs, Krsnacarya proclaims himself to be a Kapalika Y ogi. He is said to have attained the eight magical accom- plishments in addition to the Mahamudra Accomplishment. It is said that he was afflicted by pride because of his magical accomplishments. According to Abhayadatla’s biography ofthe Eighty- four Siddhas, Krsnacarya was instructed by his gum Jalandhara to seek instruction from another of Jalandhara’s disciples, a weaver.

Through interplay and instmctions received from his fellow disciple he overcame his obscuring pride.