The Transformative Body

Vesna A. Wallace

in The Inner Kalacakratantra

Published in print September 2001 | ISBN: 9780195122114
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199834808 | DOI:
The Transformative Body

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The first part of this last chapter discusses the path of actualizing gnosis in relation to the individual. The Kālacakratantra's theory of the nature of gnosis, prāṇas (life force or life winds), spiritual ignorance, and mental afflictions, as well as the relationships among them, provides the rationale for the Kālacakratantra practices for eliminating mental afflictions and actualizing the four bodies of the Buddha. Among the Kālacakratantra's multifaceted approaches to the eradication of mental afflictions, several are especially significant: first, the path of eliminating mental afflictions is the path of sublimating the afflictive nature of mental afflictions into the peaceful and pure nature of the enlightened beings, who are the pure aspects of the elements from which mental afflictions arise; second, the path of sublimating mental afflictions in the Kālacakra tradition is the path of recognizing the ultimate nature of one's own mental afflictions, which is gnosis. The following three sections of the chapter look at the transformative body of the path of initiation, the transformative body of the path of the stage of generation, and the transformative body of the path of the stage of completion. The last section examines the phases of the ṣaḍ‐aṅga‐yoga (six‐phased yoga) of the Kālacakratantra; this is a meditative process that manifests the successively more encompassing aspects of the mind.

Keywords: elimination of mental afflictions; four bodies of the Buddha; gnosis and the individual; gnosis; Indian Buddhism; Kālacakra tradition; Kālacakratantra; mental afflictions; path of initiation; path of the stage of completion; path of the stage of generation; prānas; ṣaḍ‐aṅga‐yoga; six‐phased yoga; spiritual ignorance; sublimation of mental afflictions; transformative bodie

Chapter.  15505 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Buddhism

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