Lady of Illusion

Author : Harding, Sarah

Book Details

  • Publisher : Snow Lion Publications
  • Published : 2011
  • Cover : Hardback
  • Pages : 390
  • Size : 234 x 160mm
  • Category :
    Tibetan Buddhism: Kagyu
  • Category 2 :
    Women in Buddhism
  • Catalogue No : 21667
  • ISBN 13 : 9781559393614
  • ISBN 10 : 1559393610

By the same author



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Casting a rare glimpse of feminine Buddhist history, this book brings to the forefront the life and teachings of Niguma, a mysterious eleventh century Kashmiri woman who became the source of a major Tibetan Buddhist practice lineage.

This volume includes the thirteen works that have been attributed to Niguma in the Tibetan Buddhist Canon. These collected works comprise the basis of an ancient lineage, Shangpa Kagyu, which continues to be actively studied and practiced today. It also contains additional texts that are the source verses for such esoteric practices as the Six Yogas, mahamudra, and the Chakrasamvara and Hevajra tantric practices.

The appendix also includes the Tibetan text of Stages in the Path of Illusion and the Commentary.

"Such an important historical female figure as Niguma has been obscured by centuries of overlaid mythology, but now Sarah Harding has skillfully managed to seperate the wheat from the chaff and to reveal something of the woman behind the legend, along with her place in the Shangpa tradition and her fascinating writings on yoga." Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo.

"Niguma is Niguma. A book is a book. If you read with discernment, however, and put what is written into practice, you just might meet Niguma face to face." Yangsi Kalu Rinpoche.

"The elusive "Lady of Illusion", Niguma, was the eleventh century female founder of the tantric practice lineage that forms the central core of the Shangpa Kagyu tradition. For many years those of us interested in Niguma's teachings have been waiting for this book. Now, thanks to the masterful translation work of Sarah Harding, we have it. And though we still may not know the specific details of Niguma's life, what we are given here - through these personal, detailed, and distinctive practice instructions - is the unmistaken reason for her enduring legacy. Kudos to Sarah Harding for making this unique treasure trove available." Jan Willis.

"It could be said that Niguma is the mistress of illusion. Not only is her very nature as a historical person obscure in every way and her main and only treatise focused on that subject (her master work, Stages in the Path of Illusion), but the other teachings for which she is most famous also reverberate with this theme. The two principle areas of practice in the tradition are the yogas based on the Six Dharmas of Niguma (like the Six Yogas of Naropa), with an emphasis on the illusory body and dream yogas, and the special Amulet Mahamudra, a practice of doing "nothing." This twofold division of teachings represents the two universal approaches in tantric practice: the paths of methods or techniques and the path of liberation, which focuses on the cultivation of a superior way of knowing." Sarah Harding.

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