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Masters of Mahamudra: Songs and Histories of the Eighty-Four Buddhist Siddhas
     

Masters of Mahamudra: Songs and Histories of the Eighty-Four Buddhist Siddhas

by Keith Dowman, Hugh R. Downs
 

In Tibetan Buddhism, Mahamudra represents a perfected level of meditative realization: it is the inseparable union of wisdom and compassion, of emptiness and skillful means. These eighty-four masters, some historical, some archetypal, accomplished this practice in India where they lived between the eighth and twelfth centuries. Leading unconventional lives, the

Overview

In Tibetan Buddhism, Mahamudra represents a perfected level of meditative realization: it is the inseparable union of wisdom and compassion, of emptiness and skillful means. These eighty-four masters, some historical, some archetypal, accomplished this practice in India where they lived between the eighth and twelfth centuries. Leading unconventional lives, the siddhas include some of the greatest Buddhist teachers; Tilopa, Naropa, and Marpa among them. Through many years of study, Keith Dowman has collected and translated their songs of realization and the legends about them. In consultation with contemporary teachers, he gives a commentary on each of the Great Adepts and culls from available resources what we can know of their history.

Dowman’s extensive Introduction traces the development of tantra and discusses the key concepts of the Mahamudra. In a lively and illuminating style, he unfolds the deeper understandings of mind that the texts encode. His treatment of the many parallels to contemporary psychology and experience makes a valualbe contribution to our understanding of human nature.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780887061585
Publisher:
State University of New York Press
Publication date:
08/28/1986
Series:
SUNY Series in Buddhist Studies Series
Pages:
454

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Meet the Author

Keith Dowman’s many publications include: Sky Dancer: The Secret Life and Songs of the Lady Yeshe Sogyel (Routledge & Kegan Paul) and The Legend of the Great Stupa (Dharma Publishing). He lives and practices in Kathmandu, Nepal.

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