Dalai Lama, the spiritual leader of the Tibetan people: biography, teaching, quotes and sayings
The figure of the Dalai Lama has a long history. She is known in the Buddhist tradition since the end of the XIV century. Since the XVII century, this position combines religious and state functions, has an unusually large influence and is respected and respected. It is known that in the whole history of Tibet the Dalai Lamas were 14. How many years does the current Dalai Lama, what is this institution, what is its teaching, will be covered in the article.
Transfer line "Tulku"
In accordance with Buddhist Tibetan notions, the bodhisattva decided to become a Buddha (an enlightened being) for the benefit of all people and save all life from suffering. In order to find a way out of the infinite circle of rebirths - samsara, he himself does not go to nirvana, incarnating in one of the people who is the Dalai Lama.Thus, there is a continuous line of transmission of the spiritual essence of the bodhisattva, called the "Tulku."
From the 17th century until 1959, the Dalai Lamas led Tibet from its capital, Lhasa. Their rule was of a theocratic nature, that is, it was closely associated with Buddhist beliefs and traditions, in essence, based on them. Therefore, to this day in Tibet, the Dalai Lama is considered the spiritual leader of all the people. He bears the title of "His Holiness."
Llama meaning and choice
Translated from the Mongolian language, "Dalai" means "ocean", which in this context is thought of as "great." The Mongol khans, who ruled after Chinggis, were called the title "Dalai Khan" - "The Great Khan". As for the second part of the name of the Tibetan rulers, the concept of "Lama" in the Tibetan understanding is identical with the Sanskrit "guru", which means "teacher". Thus, the meaning of the word - "Great teacher."
How is Dalai Lama chosen? When a person dies, being the next incarnation of a bodhisattva during his lifetime, the monks, believing that a reincarnation has occurred in another person - a small child - are taken for his quest.He must have certain qualities and pass a series of difficult tests.
The search process itself is rather complicated and long. It can last for many years. It begins as follows. The body of the deceased Dalai Lama, which is embalmed, is placed on the throne in a sitting position and waiting for his head to turn. After that, the monks begin to guess with the help of the waters of the sacred lake, on the surface of which they expect to see an indication of the name of the Tibetan province, where they may find a new llama.
Then they equip the whole expedition in this direction. It is believed that children who are rebirths of a bodhisattva, as a rule, remember those things and those people who were present in their past lives. Some of them have the ability to read religious texts, although they have never learned this. After a new Tibetan lama is found, the child is taken to Lhasa and taught there for several years under the guidance of experienced mentors.
The essence of Tibetan Buddhism
Tibetan Buddhism, sometimes called “Lamaism,” which is not entirely correct, is one of the trends in Buddhism that is typical of such regions as Tibet itself, and the surrounding Himalayan regions, Mongolia, Buryatia, Kalmykia, Tuva and a number of others.
This is a complex of teachings and meditative practices, a characteristic feature of which is the existence of the tradition of rebirth already mentioned above, which led to the unification of secular and spiritual power in the institution of the Dalai Lama.
At the heart of Tibetan teachings lies a notion close to the notion of “dharma”, one of the most important in Hindu philosophy and religions as well. It can be interpreted as a set of rules and regulations that are necessary in order to observe and maintain the cosmic order. It means a religious duty, and moral principles, and the universal law of being. It is believed that people who observe the principles of dharma can attain nirvana, or moksha, that is, liberation from the sufferings of the material world, from the need for new births.
Dalai Lama XIV
All of the above fully applies to today's lama, the spiritual leader of Tibet, whose name is Tenjing Gyamtsho. He was born in 1935, July 6th. Place of birth - China. The Dalai Lama is the winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, which he received in 1989.
He also has a large number of awards, among them - the Gold Medal of Congress - the highest award of the USA, which he was awarded in 2007.He headed the government of Tibet in exile until the end of April 2011, after which he transferred authority to Lobsang Sangayu.
The reincarnation of his predecessor Dalai Lama XIV was recognized in 1937, when he was 2 years old. During one of the tests, having seen some relics and toys of the previous lama, he shouted: “This is mine!” In October 1939, he arrived in Lhasa as part of a caravan.
Enthronement and exile
He was elevated to the throne in February 1940 in Tibet, more precisely in his capital Lhasa. In the 1950s, Chinese troops invaded these territories, after which, with the approval of the Dalai Lama, an agreement was signed in 1951 that envisaged the peaceful liberation of the country.
Then, for nine years, the lama attempted peaceful coexistence with the central Chinese authorities. However, after the uprising against China was suppressed, he was forced to leave the capital in March 1959 and took refuge in India, where the Tibetan government is now in exile.
In 2012, after leaving the political leadership, the Dalai Lama made a statement regarding his position on the independence of Tibet.He stressed that, despite the opinion of the Chinese authorities, he does not feel the desire for independence of the country, but only stands for his autonomous existence in the PRC on a democratic basis.
The teachings of the Dalai Lama are Dzogcheng, which refers to the original nature - integral to every being and expressed in a condition called "rigpa." This nature of mind is characterized as empty, clear, pure, all-encompassing. Also, to reflect it, such terms as “natural state”, “initial awareness” are used.
It does not have its own form, but is endowed with the ability to perceive, manifest, experience, reflect or express any other forms. However, it is in no way affected by other forms. As an example, the masters of the Dzogcheng teachings give a mirror that manifests any reflections that do not affect the mirror itself. If a person is able to maintain such a state within himself, then he will be protected from any manifestations of suffering.
Dzogcheng is given to the disciple by the master, who was able to achieve the realization of the original natural state.The essence of the teaching is contained in the three precepts, which call for:
- familiarize yourself with the nature of your own consciousness with the help of an experienced mentor;
- get rid of doubts;
- maintain this state.
In accordance with the named covenants, the teaching is divided into three sections:
- dedicated to the nature of mind;
- outlining the original space;
- containing secret verbal instructions.
Following Dzogcheng, a person can, in the continuation of one life, attain the final realization - the “state of the Buddha”, including through the realization of the “body of light” at the very end of the life path.
Another important aspect of the teachings of the Dalai Lama - non-violence. It is a value system, a social and ethical concept, and a spiritual practice. At the core of each of these areas is the rejection of violence and the complete rejection of it in achieving any goals, including good ones.
Non-violence can manifest itself as a fundamental conviction - religious, philosophical, ethical, and also as a political pragmatic strategy. One of the ideologues of non-violence is Mahatma Gandhi - an outstanding Indian political and social activist,whose philosophy influenced supporters of peaceful change, particularly in the independence movement of India.
In Buddhism, as in Hinduism, the concept of "non-violence" is closely related to the idea of ahimsa - not causing harm to all sentient beings. In 1987, the Dalai Lama XIV proposed a peaceful political program, which he called the "Ahimsa Zone", or the "Zone of Peace". Its essence lies in the following sentence. First, make Tibet a zone of non-violence, having carried out a complete demilitarization there, and then expand it to the size of the entire globe.
The program assumes that Tibet, as a zone of peace, will be cleared of all types of weapons and will become a place where people can harmoniously coexist with nature. It was for the nomination of this plan, which is also called the "Middle Way", the Dalai Lama XIV was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
Dalai Lama's quotes are wise and can be interesting to anyone. Perhaps the sayings of this respected person will help someone in a particular life situation. In this regard, it is advisable to give a close to the text presentation of some quotations of the Dalai Lama concerning religion, joy and suffering.
- Religion is a personal matter of each person, his individual consciousness. And it is all different. There are several concepts related to God, for example, the concept of the creator god or the theory that deduces the law of cause and effect. Everyone has the right to exist. But even if a person is an unbeliever, the main thing is that he is honest, sincere and compassionate.
- As one develops altruism, love, and compassion in oneself, one gets rid of hatred, pride, and base desires.
- You cannot allow the joy that lives in you to dry up. Unhappiness destroys everything around, instead of suffering, it is better to try to change something, and if nothing can be changed, suffering will not help here.
- People often exacerbate their pain and suffering, showing undue attention to trifles, taking much too close to their hearts.