Lifting the Veil off the Fourteen Root Infractions in Tantric “Buddhism”-Part 6: The Inscrutable Commitment to Vows
(Reported by the True Heart News interviewing team in Taipei)
The second item in the “introduction” section of Tsongkhapa’s exposition of the fourteen tantric root infractions is “commitment to the undertaking.” It says once you “make a commitment to the undertaking,” you have to follow through and complete it.
Tsongkhapa says: “The commitment to the undertaking. I shall explain the fourteen root downfalls spoken of in the tantras. ‘I shall explain…’ What?... the fourteen root downfalls. To those who say, You have just made it up yourself, so what you say cannot be trusted, (he responds) There is not that fault because I shall explain what is ‘spoken of in the tantras.’” (1)
In terms of Buddhism, the words “I shall explain or expound” should be words reserved for Buddha, the World-Honored One, and should not appear in any tantric texts. When an unenlightened lama uses them in a discourse, he is only demonstrating his immense ignorance. The gurus of the four sects of “fake Tibetan Buddhism,” including Tsongkhapa, are all “ordinary lamas” who have not achieved enlightenment but are arrogant and self-important nonetheless. Without any trans-mundane wisdom, they are not qualified to explain or expound the Dharma.
The true meaning of “expounding Dharma” is “to open the great gate of Dharma and demonstrate these unsurpassed teachings to learners.” Only bodhisattvas who have already attained enlightenment and realized true Reality of the dharma-realm are qualified to expound and teach Dharma. Buddha uses the words “expound and explain” in various sutras, especially in The Lotus Sutra, to convey the meaning of “reveal, demonstrate, realize and enter.” In other words, it refers to guiding Buddhist learners to enter into the world of Buddhism and afford them the realization of true Dharma through the revealing, demonstrating, realizing and entering (attaining) Buddha’s insights.
The wondrous Dharma the Buddha reveals and demonstrates is the eighth vijnana, Tathagatagarbha, the mind of true suchness and the ultimate origin of our existence. It is the Mind that Buddha wants sentient beings to awaken to via his expositions. However, the Buddha forbids anyone to describe the essence and properties of the Tathagatagarbha openly and straightforwardly. Sentient beings can only awaken to this abstruse entity through what the World-Honored One has “revealed and demonstrated.”
The transmission of Buddha’s true Dharma originated from the expositions of Buddha Sakyamuni. All authentic Buddhist sutras start invariably with the words “Thus I have heard,” for it was Venerable Ananda who had personally heard the Buddha’s teachings and recited them from memory for compilation after the Buddha entered nirvana. Beginning all sutras with the expression “Thus I have heard…” serves as a confirmation of this fact.
Now to the dharma-ending age, the world of classic Buddhist sutras is inundated with many “dubitable and apocryphal sutras,” especially the great many “sutras” from the Tantra Division. It is quite common for these questionable texts in the Tantra Division, such as the Mahavairocana Sutra, the Susiddhikara Sutra, and the Vajrashekhara Sutra (Diamond Peak Sutra), to start with “Thus I have heard” as well, despite the fact that their writers never attended at the Buddha’s side and heard His teachings. Unfortunately, the lama gurus and many people consider these writings of dubious origin as treasures and as the Dharma Jewel.
As for the tantras written by gurus of “fake Tibetan Buddhism,” their number is even more overwhelming. Since the authors of these tantras all held the titles such as dalai, dharma-king, living tulku, and rinpoche, many Buddhist learners were awed to believe that their contents are extraordinary. This is not a novel situation but one that has existed in the past as well, which is why all versions of today’s Taisho Tripitaka contains a frightening amount of tantric sutras and commentaries (tantras).
Tsongkhapa writes: “I shall explain…’ What?... the fourteen root downfalls.”
As a matter of fact, precepts and disciplines are written in Buddhist terminologies to prevent learners from unintentionally violating them.
The real Buddha Dharma itself is devoid of linguistic representations and discrimination. It is unfathomably profound. Therefore in the Buddha Dharma, to “explain” or “expound” refers to the teaching of this profound Dharma to benefit learners by indirect, contrasting description without revealing the secret meaning.
Insofar as the fourteen root infractions are defined in terms of tantric doctrines rather than the Buddha Dharma, their validity is highly questionable. This is possibly the reason that its author adopted a sort of “question and answer” style to vindicate their legitimacy: “To those who say, You have just made it up yourself, so what you say cannot be trusted…” Therefore, if someone questions whether the fourteen root infractions were established by their framer and cannot be believed, his or her doubt is legitimate and reasonable.
The author’s reply to his self-imposed question is that “There is not that fault because I shall explain what is ‘spoken of in the tantras.’” In other words, what he says are absolutely right because they are based on the tantric sutras. However, if these tantric sutras he references are proved to be dubitable and apocryphal, then his claim of absolute correctness would flip into absolute incorrectness, and calling into question the validity of the Tantric Vajra Vehicle and the associated fourteen root infractions.
In Buddhism, only texts professed by Buddha Sakyamuni can be called sutras and the Buddha has explicitly forbid sexual activity for monastics and extramarital affairs for lay practitioners in His discourse of precepts in the sutras. From this perspective, the tantric sutras detailing licentious and excessive sexual behavior of lama gurus should definitely be classified as fake sutras.
Yet, the greatest problem lies in the fact that fake Tibetan Buddhism holds Buddha Mahavairocana as the Buddha of its fictitious scriptures, whom they proclaim is of a higher spiritual attainment than Buddha Sakyamuni (in the same vein, they proclaim that the fruition-ground cultivation of the tantric Vajra Vehicle is more advanced than the cause-ground cultivation of the Three-Vehicle Bodhi). This fabricated untruth is used to justify their heretical doctrines.
Determining the authenticity of the tantric sutras and commentaries in the Taisho Tripitaka must be done by enlightened bodhisattvas who can distinguish and refute the contents item by item (a major on-going project for the True Enlightenment Practitioners Association). Enlightened bodhisattvas are rare and difficult to come upon in this dharma-ending age; otherwise, it would not have been possible for so many tantric sutras and commentaries to sneak into the Taisho Tripitaka.
Tsongkhapa quotes contents from many tantric commentaries, such as the eighteenth part of the Red Yamari Tantra, the seventeenth part of the Black Yamari Tantra, and the twelfth section of the Ornarnent of the Vajra Essence Tantra to attest the legitimacy of the fourteen tantric root infractions. Again, since all these commentaries are built upon the tantric sutras, then if the tantric sutras were proven to be fabrications, the grounds of the fourteen root infractions would immediately dissolve.
In the “commitment to the undertaking” section, Tsongkhapa also says: “Some earlier saints have said the following about the purpose of making such a commitment to write [a text]: Since saintly persons do not lightly commit themselves to just anything, and, once they have [committed themselves], do not give up until they completely finish what they have set out to do…”
Tsongkhapa’s emphasis on the “commitment to write” was quite far-sighted. A neophyte who unknowingly commits himself to this pledge will be bounded by it. When he becomes a guru, he will have to squeeze out at least one book to fulfill this haunting oath. Given that the lifelong learning of all tantric gurus constitutes of nothing but the Tantric Vajrayana Couple-Practice, anything these lamas and gurus write is unsurprisingly confined to this particular domain. As a result of this kind of laborious propagation, the “Tantric Vajrayana” Couple-Practice eventually becomes an accepted practice. Moreover, the mutual accolade and duplication in these publications lend credence to the idea of Dual Operations of Bliss and Emptiness generated from sexual intercourse and precipitate a sinister and powerful force behind the Couple-Practice.
Having the “commitment to write” is a shrewd strategy to propagate the “Tantric Vajrayana Couple-Practice.” It makes sure that the lama gurus can flood the world with their tantric writings and showcase their devious and sordid practices. In the less conservative western countries, the sexual practices are written in explicit language and fervently hyped. Unsuspecting Western Buddhist learners mistake everything in these tantric books for the Buddha Dharma, a direct consequence brought about by the “commitment to the undertaking” of tantric vows. In Chinese society where traditional Confucian values prevails, these contents of Couple-Practice are coded in mysterious and cryptic terms since the Dalai Lama and his cohorts knew that they cannot openly illustrate and advertise the sexual tantras; however, the inadvertent consequence for this underexposure is that some credulous Asian followers of Tibetan “Buddhism” have been actively but blindly defending the Dalai Lama and his entourage.
The “Way to Buddhahood” advocated by generations of dalai lamas, dharma kings, living tulkus and rinpoches all point to “orgasm during heterosexual intercourse”; this teaching appears in the books they write and has been put into actual practice for centuries. Sadly, in this dharma-ending age, even such plain truth can get drowned out by public clamor.
Note 1: Excerpts from Tsongkhapa’s Fruit Clusters of Siddhis
This article is an English version of the Chinese edition published on
May 3, 2014.