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A highly esteemed Buddhist treatise on realizing your divine nature.
This concise treatise by the eleventh-century Tibetan Buddhist philosopher Rongzom Chökyi Zangpo sets out to prove the provocative point that everything that appears is actually deity manifest. Many books on Tibetan Buddhism address the important themes of mind training, compassion, and proper conduct, but this book goes beyond that in its aim to bring the student face to face with his or her divine and pure nature.
Transformation not only of one’s identity but also of one’s environment is an important principle in Tantric Buddhist philosophy. In Tantric scriptures one is instructed to visualize oneself as a deity, a divine identity who resides in a perfect sphere. By repeatedly training in this visualization, one perfects the transformation and ultimately becomes the deity itself. By unraveling the interplay between rationality, truth, and divinity, Establishing Appearances as Divine brings to light the view that underlies Tantric Buddhist practices.
“Rongzom Chözang, one of the most important scholars of the eleventh century, believed in the divinity of the world. Even more interesting, he set out to prove it! Köppl’s book, a translation of Rongzom’s most important text on the subject, is an important contribution to Buddhist doctrinal studies. The long introduction provides us with one of the most detailed comparative treatments of the Nyingma view (tawa) that I know of, elucidating Rongzom’s position in relation to other Nyingma thinkers. The notes to the translation clarify even the most difficult portions of the text . . . A truly masterful work.”--José Ignacio Cabezón, XIVth Dalai Lama Professor of Tibetan Buddhism and Cultural Studies, University of California, Santa Barbara
“Heidi Köppl makes the seminal work of Rongzom Chökyi Zangpo newly accessible to the modern reader. Rongzom, in deep conversation with Buddhist philosophy, argued for the most immediate visionary experience of enlightenment--every part of our world as already divine. Rongzom, assisted by Köppl’s sparkling exegesis, leads readers to a direct encounter with their own primordial goodness.”--John Makransky, Associate Professor of Buddhism and Comparative Theology, Boston College