Chinese Buddhism and Tibet Mythology
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The paper discusses the first stage in the spread of Buddhism throughout Tibet and describes how Tibetan mythology slowly changed its form. The paper provides examples of the transition from old beliefs to new beliefs that illustrates how the spread of Buddhism saw a gradual acceptance in Tibet. The paper highlights how Tibetan myths make Tibetan Buddhism unique from the other forms of Buddhism.
From the Paper:"Tibet has always had a rich culture and tradition especially in the belief of supreme beings. Their beliefs though are likened to the Greeks and Romans because of the polytheistic nature. "The worship of mountain gods was one of the most important forms of nature worship among ancient Tibetans; it was fundamental to their entire belief system. Each mountain god possessed his own territory and was in charge of particular affairs. (Jisheng 343)" Similar to the Greek gods and goddesses living in Mount Olympus, Tibet's mythological gods reign over the land high up on their mountain lairs. There are four great mountain gods in the Tibetan region; each one is identified with a specific sacred mountain: yar-lha-sham-po in central Tibet; gnyan-chenthang-lha in Byang-thang in the north; sku-lha-ri-rgya in the south; and vod-degung-rgyal in the south (Jisheng 343).
"The first stage of the spread of Buddhism throughout Tibet occurred from the mid 7th to the mid 9th centuries (Hongjia, 2009). Tibetan mythology slowly changed its form in the Buddhist milieu. The four Tibet mountain gods mentioned previously remained mountain beings but took another form to align with the new religious beliefs; they became Buddhist guardians (Jisheng 345) and their powers were not the same since the guardians now answer to the Buddha, the more Supreme Being in the new religion. Further, the mountain gods in the old Tibetan mythology did not have a specific representation or attribute but in "Buddhist ritual texts, the mountain god is described as wearing armor and a white fighting gown studded with decorative gems (Jisheng 351).""
Sample of Sources Used:
- Hongjia, Xiang. A Brief Introduction to Tibetan Buddhism. 2009. 02 July 2009. <http://dti.inah.gob.mx/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=596&Itemid=98>.
- Jisheng, Xie. "The Mythology of Tibetan Mountain Gods: An Overview." Oral Tradition 16/2 (2001): 343-363.
- Khandro Net. The Nagas. 2009. 02 July 2009. <http://www.bibliotecapleyades.net/sumer_anunnaki/reptiles/reptiles15.htm>.
- Schlagintweit, Emil. Buddhism in Tibet. 1863. 02 July 2009. <http://www.sacred-texts.com/bud/bit/index.htm>.
- Trimondi, Victor and Victoria Trimondi. The Shadow of the Dalai Lama. 2003. 02 July 2009. <http://www.iivs.de/~iivs01311/SDLE/Contents.htm>.
Cite this Comparison Essay:
Chinese Buddhism and Tibet Mythology (2011, December 05) Retrieved November 21, 2019, from https://www.academon.com/comparison-essay/chinese-buddhism-and-tibet-mythology-149294/
"Chinese Buddhism and Tibet Mythology" 05 December 2011. Web. 21 November. 2019. <https://www.academon.com/comparison-essay/chinese-buddhism-and-tibet-mythology-149294/>