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Shri Singha (Sanskrit: Śrī Siṃha) was a principal disciple and dharma-son of Manjushrimitra in the Dzogchen lineage.

Vajranatha (2007) contextualises Sri Singha in relation to the Nyingma, Manjushrimitra, Tantra, Brahman, Garab Dorje, Uddiyana, Vimalamitra, Samye and Yogachara:

According to the Nyingmapa tradition of Tibetan Buddhism, the Dzogchen masters Manjushrimitra and Shrisimha were already active in the Tantric milieu in India independently. However, Manushrimitra, a learned scholar of Brahman origin, was evidently an adherent of the Yogachara school before his becoming a disciple of the mysterious Prahevajra or Garab Dorje (dga'-rab rdo-rje) from the country of Uddiyana (Eastern Afghanistan). It should also be recalled that his disciple Shrisimha was said to have born and resided for sometime in China (more likely Chinese Central Asia) before coming to India. And that the latter's disciple Vimalamitra visited China (or Central Asia) before and after he came to Tibet and transmitted the Dzogchen teachings to his disciples at Samye Monastery.[1]

Contents

Nomenclature and etymology

Śrī Siṃha ('Revered Lion') = Pra-pata.

Early life

Shri Singha was born in the Chinese city of Shokyam in Khotan and first studied there with Chinese masters. Shri Singha studied for seven years with the Chinese Master Bhelakirti[2] on the eastern side of Wu Tai Shan Mountain,[3] from whom he learnt the Outer Tantras and the Inner Tantras.

Son of King 'Accomplisher' and his wife queen Nantakā,[4] their son 'Splendid Lion' Prapata was disciple of Buddha-gupta, who was disciple of Deva-rāja, who was disciple of Mañjuśrī-bhadra, who was disciple of Dhahuna, who was disciple of Nagarjuna.

Achievements

Śrī Siṃha brought the Secret Mantra teachings from beneath the Vajra Throne to the 'Tree of Enlightenment' in China, where he concealed them in a pillar of the 'Auspicious Ten Thousand Gates Temple'.[5]

Śrī Siṃha conferred the Eighteen Dzogchen Tantras (Tibetan: rdzogs chen rgyud bco brgyad)[6] upon Padmasambhava.[7] The eighteen are The Penetrating Sound Tantra (Tibetan: sgra thal ‘gyur),[8] to which was appended the Seventeen Tantas of Innermost Luminosity (Tibetan: yang gsang 'od gsal gyi rgyud bcu bdun).[9]

Kunsang (2006: p.334) in rendering the instructions of Sri Singha to Padmasambhava mentions: 'phenomena' (Sanskrit: dharmas), 'development' (Tibetan: Kye-rim), completion (Tibetan: Dzog-rim) and Great Perfection, 'three realms' (Sanskrit: Triloka) and the 'six abodes' (Sanskrit: Bhavacakra) and Dharma, Samsara, Nirvana and sentient beings:

In general, all phenomena belonging to samsara and nirvana are, from the very beginning, spontaneously perfected as the essence of awakened mind. However, because of failing to realize and not knowing this to be just how it is, sentient beings circle among the three realms and continue to wander among the six abodes. In order to guide them, it is generally said that an inconceivable number of doorways to the Dharma belonging to the various vehicles have been taught, but these can all be contained within development, completion and the Great Perfection.[10]

Kunsang (2006: p.334) in rendering the continued instructions of Sri Singha to Padmasambhava makes reference to nirmanakaya, sambhogakaya and dharmakaya and outlines:

...there are the three sections of the philosophical vehicles belonging to nirmanakaya, the three sections of Kriya and Yoga belonging to sam-bhogakaya, and the three aspects of development, completion and the Great Perfection belonging to dharmakaya. Among these, I shall explain to you the Ati Yoga of Instructions, distilling its quintessence, which is the Innermost Vajra Essence of the Unexcelled Fruition. So listen, Padmasambhava.[11]

'Philosophical vehicles' (Tibetan: rgyu'i theg pa) in the abovementioned quotation denotes Theravada and Mahayana as different from Vajrayana.[12]

Shri Singha Monastic University

The Shri Singha Monastic University, founded by Gyalse Shenpen Thaye, is a Nyingmapa university in in Eastern Tibet. In the tradition, it is held that a manifestation of Sri Singha marked the spot for the location of the university, hence its name. Do Khyentse Yeshe Dorje consecrated the site laying the 'foundation stone' with his phurba. The original University was destroyed by the Chinese in their annexation of Tibet post-1950. The University is being rebuilt.[13]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Vajranatha (2007). Dzogchen, Chinese Buddhism and the Universal Mind: Dzogchen and Chinese Buddhism. Source: [1] (accessed: December 12, 2007)
  2. ^ (Tibetan: bhe la kir ti; Alternate orthographies: Bhalakiti (Tibetan: bha la ki ti), Bilekiti (Tibetan: bi le ki ti)
  3. ^ Refer: Wu Tai Shan Mountain (accessed: December 2, 2007)
  4. ^ Longchenpa's Illuminating Sunlight, translated in Erik Pema Kunsang (translator) : Wellsprings of the Great Perfection. Rangjung Yeshe Publications, Hong Kong, 2006. Rangjung Yeshe Publications, Hong Kong, 2006. p. 110
  5. ^ Vimalamitra's Great History of the Heart Essence, translated in Erik Pema Kunsang (translator) : Wellsprings of the Great Perfection. Rangjung Yeshe Publications, Hong Kong, 2006. pp. 136-137
  6. ^ Source: [2] (accessed: December 113, 2007)
  7. ^ Erik Pema Kunsang (translator) : Wellsprings of the Great Perfection. Rangjung Yeshe Pulications, Hong Kong, 2006. p. 158
  8. ^ Dra Talgyur Root Tantra Source: [3] (December 13, 2007)
  9. ^ Source: [4] (accessed: December 13, 2007)
  10. ^ Kunsang, Erik Pema (2006). Wellsprings of the Great Perfection: The Lives And Insights of the Early Masters. Rangjung Yeshe Publications. ISBN 9627341576. Source: [5] (accessed: January 8, 2009)
  11. ^ Kunsang, Erik Pema (2006). Wellsprings of the Great Perfection: The Lives And Insights of the Early Masters. Rangjung Yeshe Publications. ISBN 9627341576. Source: [6] (accessed: January 8, 2009)
  12. ^ Source: [7] (accessed: January 8, 2007)
  13. ^ Source: [8] (accessed: December 13, 2007)

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