Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

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Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by Annapurna on Wed Jan 28, 2009 12:15 pm

Far from being very familiar with Tibetan Buddhism, let me ask a question please. I sometimes read things that seem to point into the direction that the position of women in Tibetan Buddhism is a bit stronger than in other schools.

Is that so?

Thanks.... Smile

:bee:
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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by sherab zangpo on Wed Jan 28, 2009 2:33 pm

Here is a quote from Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet.

Women and Buddhism

I think it is also appropriate for me to say something about feminism and women's rights within Buddhism.
In the case of the monastic way of life, although male and female practitioners are afforded equal opportunities in the Discipline texts to take the monastic vows, we find that fully ordained monks are treated as superior in terms of objects of respect and veneration. From this point of view, we might say that there is some discrimination.
Also in the writings of the low vehicle, we find that a Bodhisattva on the highest level of path who is sure to gain enlightenment in that lifetime is said to be a male. We find a similar explanation in the great vehicle sutras, that a Bodhisattva on the highest level of path, who will definitely achieve enlightenment in the same lifetime is a male abiding in the Blissful Pure Land (Sukhavati). This is also true of the three lower classes of tantra, but the explanation in Highest Yoga Tantra is different.
In Highest Yoga Tantra, even the first step of receiving empowerment is possible only on the basis of the presence of a complete assembly of male and female deities. The Buddhas of the five families must be accompanied by their consorts.
The female role is strongly emphasized in Highest Yoga Tantra. To despise a woman is a transgression of one of the root tantric vows, although no corresponding transgression is mentioned in relation to male practitioners. Also, in the actual practice of meditating on mandala deities, the deity concerned is often female, such as Vajra Yogini or Nairatmaya.
In addition, tantra speaks of the point in the completion stage when the practitioner is advised to seek a consort, as an impetus for further realization of the path. In such cases of union, if the realization of one of the partners is more advanced, he or she is able to bring about the release, or actualization of the resultant state, of both practitioners.
Therefore, it is explained in Highest Yoga Tantra, that a practitioner can become totally enlightened in this lifetime as a female. This is explicitly and clearly stated in tantras such as Guhyasamaja.
The basic point is that in tantra and particularly in Highest Yoga Tantra, what practitioners are engaged in is a method of exploring and developing the latent potency within themselves. That is, the fundamental innate mind of clear light and from the point of view, since males and females possess that faculty equally, there is no difference whatsoever in their ability to attain the resultant state.
So, the Buddhist position on the question of discrimination between the sexes is that from the ultimate point of view, that of Highest Yoga Tantra, there is no distinction at all.


Last edited by sherab zangpo on Fri Feb 27, 2009 2:54 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by dorje on Wed Jan 28, 2009 2:38 pm

Definitely. One of the vows of practicing Tantric Buddhism is not to look down and honor women.
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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by caz namyaw on Mon Mar 02, 2009 12:38 pm

Treat others as you would have them treat you, To current standard having a different set of gential organs doesnt inhibit the progress of the mind.
Its very backwards thinking to beleive women are less capable then men for attaining enlightenment.

peace

xxx
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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by malalu on Mon Mar 02, 2009 8:40 pm

caz namyaw wrote:
Its very backwards thinking to beleive women are less capable then men for attaining enlightenment.

xxx

Yes. In fact, I believe it is said that the female energy is representitive of wisdom, so women are very capable of high realization leading to enlightenment.
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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by muni on Wed Mar 18, 2009 10:04 am

Primordial goodness by "attaining" perfect knowledge of nature of mind. Very Happy


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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by muni on Wed Mar 18, 2009 10:04 am

What compassion is different in pure perception?


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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by muni on Wed Mar 18, 2009 10:05 am

Namgyalma!

"What value is other than so and so" in clarity?

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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by caz namyaw on Wed Mar 18, 2009 10:11 am

Beautiful muni ! Very Happy

peace

xxx
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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by muni on Wed Mar 18, 2009 10:19 am



Thank you Caz! Friends in harmony; whether woman or man.

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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by muni on Thu Mar 19, 2009 8:37 am

Lama Zopa said about this painting of Green Tara: "She looks like she has been enjoying ice cream!" Hehe.
Have a nice day! Very Happy

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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by caz namyaw on Thu Mar 19, 2009 1:08 pm

muni wrote:

Thank you Caz! Friends in harmony; whether woman or man.

Im just suprised that people could actually think that having a different set of genital organs could prevent you from attaining enlightenment... :crazy:

peace

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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by kiman on Thu Mar 19, 2009 1:37 pm

Women will get their wisdom and compassion increasing rapidly when they have a child/children. Isn't it right?
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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by Karma Dondrup Tashi on Thu Mar 19, 2009 1:38 pm

Abstract: A brief overview of the situation for nuns in the Tibetan Tradition

by Bhiksuni Tenzin Palmo

Historically the bhikshuni ordination was never formally introduced into Tibet presumably because there was never a quorum of 5 Indian bhikshunis who made the hazardous journey across the Himalayan range.

However nuns did receive the shramanerika or novice ordination and were treated with a certain respect within society. Traditionally nuns usually devoted themselves to meditation practice, ritual or often acted as servants for the lamas or their own family members. Many nuns attained high levels of spiritual realisation but since they received little education they did not write books, teach extensively and consequently had no voice. Of course even in Tibet there were isolated cases of highly educated nuns studying under a learned Lama, but it was not the norm. So one of the advances for nuns in exile has been the introduction of a study program on a par with that received by monks. The result is now emerging of well-educated and trained nuns who are becoming more confident and articulate.

However even modern nuns are still quite diffident and shy in the presence of male monastics, especially the Rinpoches and Geshes. They will naturally not oppose any male authority figure.

The Lamas often discourage nuns from considering Bhikshuni ordination by assuring them that such an ordination is not necessary. In addition, they state, it would be extremely burdensome for the nuns to have to keep so many rules. Their viewpoint is that education is sufficient to raise the status of nuns and they should be content with that.

In answer to the Lamas' position stated above intending to undermine the idea of bhikshuni ordination by saying that this ordination is not necessary or important, I say "Oh, so Rinpoche you are still a novice?" When he immediately insists that of course he is fully ordained, I reply that he had just stated that that ordination was not important, so why had he bothered? The point about the rules being too heavy for the nuns to bear is usually countered by the observation that the nuns will surely be able to keep the rules at least as well as the monks are presently keeping theirs!

However this pervading attitude has to be faced. Let us consider a few points.

First of all, the Lord Buddha himself decreed the full ordination for nuns. He did not say that nuns should only receive a sramanerika ordination. Whatever the controversy over his reasons for hesitating or the 8 Garudharmas, the bhikshunis were definitely bhikshunis, so we are merely following the Buddha's own intention.

For a country or nation to be considered as truly Buddhist, there must be the fourfold sangha of bhikshu, bhikshuni, upasaka, upasika.

In those countries such as China, Taiwan, Korea and Vietnam where the bhikshuni ordination is still extant the status of nuns is high and they receive the support and respect of society almost on a level with monks. They are brothers and sisters in the Dharma. However the vinaya makes it clear the monks always enjoy a higher status so there is no cause for monks to feel concerned.

How does this concern nuns in the Tibetan tradition? One point is the question of the Geshema or Khenmo degree. Several Lamas of various traditions have stated to me that these degrees can only be given to one holding Full Ordination, since one of the subjects to be examined is the Vinaya which can only be studied by the ordained. Even if a nun received permission to study the bhikshuni vinaya (which they read when reciting the Kangyur anyway) without having herself received the bhikshuni vows, there would probably exist the stigma that she was not really a geshema but only allowed the title out of consideration for her scholastic efforts.

Also since they do not have bhikshuni vows, Tibetan nuns cannot take part in the monastic ceremonies such as full sojong or ordination ceremonies. They are therefore barred from important aspects of their lives as monastics.

It is my understanding that only on the acceptance of a novice by 10 fully ordained monastics during the Bhikshuni ordination, does the person become a part of the actual monastic sangha. In other words, as long as one remains a sramanerika one is only on the doorstep so to speak, and has not yet entered into the temple of monastic sangha. Why should a nun of 60 years ordination still be only a novice?

At our nunnery of Dongyu Gatsal Ling the nuns study philosophy with a Khenpo from the Dzongsar College and senior nuns from the Nyingma Nunnery of HH Penor Rinpoche. In addition they are instructed in ritual by senior monks of our affiliated monastery of Khampagar in nearby Tashi Jong. The nuns also learn English and perform a strict 2 month retreat every year.

Our aim is not only to produce philosophy teachers (Khenmo) but also to re-establish in India a rare lineage of yoginis or togdenma. These nun yoginis, who follow the Milarepa tradition, dedicate their lives to meditation practice and hence can become masters and exemplars for others. There are few qualified women teachers of meditation in the Tibetan tradition although many female practitioners.

Several of the most senior lamas in my Drukpa Kagyu lineage, including His Holiness the Gyalwa Drukpa, suggest that the future of the tradition may lie with women who have such a high level of dedication and devotion. Therefore they are urging and themselves implementing an equality between the monks and the nuns.

So this is the time for nuns to cease to be merely tight little buds of unfulfilled aspirations and to fully blossom into their great intellectual and spiritual potential.
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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by caz namyaw on Thu Mar 19, 2009 2:01 pm

kiman wrote:Women will get their wisdom and compassion increasing rapidly when they have a child/children. Isn't it right?

Compassion and love will increase but it doesnt mean wisdom will too, if that where the case there would be no neglectfull parents full well knowing the karming effects of the karma they are creating Wink

peace

xxx
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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by kiman on Thu Mar 19, 2009 2:07 pm

I see. You are right. My mom has big compassion and love, but sometimes does everythings for me without think deeply what she does.
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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by caz namyaw on Thu Mar 19, 2009 2:11 pm

kiman wrote:I see. You are right. My mom has big compassion and love, but sometimes does everythings for me without think deeply what she does.

Wisdom comes from knowing self ( get the irony Wink )

peace

xxx
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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by kiman on Thu Mar 19, 2009 2:17 pm

:namaste:
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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by muni on Sat Mar 21, 2009 6:51 am

Vajrayogini.

Vajravarahi. :namaste:

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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by muni on Sat Mar 21, 2009 7:00 am


Ma Chig Lab Dron. _/\_ :pray:

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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by muni on Wed Mar 25, 2009 7:53 am

In nature is no duality, neither no-duality of man-woman abiding. :butterfly: Freedom from delusion.

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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by muni on Tue Mar 31, 2009 6:52 am

_/\_

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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by Naljorma on Mon Apr 06, 2009 3:26 pm

pls try not to show these deities to those who have not taken the initations...better not show....--->>JUST AN ADVICE.
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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by muni on Sat Apr 11, 2009 6:42 am

http://www.drukpa-nuns.org/intro/intro_main.html _/\_ _/\_ _/\_

Candle

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Re: Position Of Women In Tibetan Buddhism

Post by LauraJ on Tue Apr 14, 2009 9:56 pm

muni wrote:http://www.drukpa-nuns.org/intro/intro_main.html _/\_ _/\_ _/\_

Candle

This site is awesome, many thanks! I'm going to spend a while digging in over there I love you

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