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Part of a series on Tibetan Buddhism
|Timeline · Related-topics|
|Nyingma · Kagyu · Sakya · Gelug · Bön|
|Three marks of existence · Skandha · Cosmology · Saṃsāra · Rebirth · Bodhisattva · Dharma · Dependent Origination · Karma|
|Gautama Buddha · Padmasambhava · Je Tsongkhapa · Dalai Lama · Panchen Lama · Lama · Karmapa Lama · Rinpoche · Geshe · Terton · Tulku|
|Buddhahood · Avalokiteśvara · Four Stages of Enlightenment · Tantric yoga · Paramitas · Meditation · Laity|
|Changzhug · Drepung · Dzogchen · Ganden · Jokhang · Kumbum · Labrang · Mindroling · Namgyal · Narthang · Nechung · Pabonka · Palcho · Ralung · Ramoche · Sakya · Sanga · Sera · Shalu · Tashilhunpo · Tsurphu · Yerpa|
|Chotrul Duchen · Dajyur · Losar · Monlam · Sho Dun|
|Kangyur · Tengyur · Tibetan Canon · Mahayana Sutras|
|Sand mandala · Thangka · Ashtamangala · Tree of physiology|
Tibetan Buddhism comprises a number of distinct monastic traditions, which are commonly reduced to four: Nyingma, Kagyu, Sakya, and Gelug. The list is sometimes expanded to eight, mainly by distinguishing among Kagyu subdivisions.
Such groupings have evolved over time. For example, Tsongkhapa's Gelug order combined Drontonpa's Kadam lineage with Kagyu and Sakya elements, while Gampopa's Kagyu tradition unified Kadam and Mahamudra lineages.
A "fifth" tradition,Jonang, was suppressed by the Gelug and long thought to have disappeared; it survives in Kham. Alternatively, Bon is sometimes listed as the "fifth" tradition, despite its lack of Buddhist identity.
- Note on orthography: The Tibetan adjectival suffix -pa (or -ba)is translatable as "-ist" in English. English renderings may either include or omit it.
- rNying Ma
- "Old" (being the oldest of the four "schools")
The Nyingma tradition shares several important features with the (non-Buddhist) Bon religion, most notably the division of teachings into nine yanas ("vehicles") culminating in Dzogchen ("Great Perfection").
The Nyingma ("Old") school is often contrasted with the other three, which are collectively referred to as Sarma ("New"). The reference is to the period of key Buddhist translations into Tibetan.
- bKa' brGyud
- "Oral Transmission"
- Gampopa (a twelth-century physician)
- A. Dagpo sect—encompasses four major and eight minor Kagyu schools that trace back to Gampopa:
- B. Shangpa Kagyu--a lineage which includes Niguma (sister of Naropa and consort of Tilopa), Milarepa, and in the 20th century, Kalu Rinpoche.
The now-familiar Tibetan practice of discovering tulkus originated within the Karma Kagyu order, resulting in the line of Karmapas. The purpose was to adapt the principle of hereditary succession to a celibate monastic system.
Mahamudra, the Sarma counterpart to Dzogchen, originated within the Kagyu tradition.
- Sa sKya
- "Grey Earth" (after its original monastery)
- Favorite tantras
- Spiritual head
- Sakya Trizin
Sakya hierarchs ruled Tibet on behalf of the Mongol Empire during the 13th and 14th centuries. Leadership of the order succeeded from uncle to nephew, thereby combining a traditional inheritance system with the strictures of monastic celibacy.
Phagpa is known for his invention of a Mongolian script.
Outside of the Tibetan town of Sakya, the Sakya sect also dominates in Lo Manthang, Nepal.
- dGe Lugs
- "Way of Virtue"
- Tsongkhapa (14th to 15th century monastic scholar)
- Spiritual head
- The Ganden Tripa
The Gelug order, through its lineage of Dalai Lamas, ruled central Tibet from the mid-17th to the mid-20th century. It is sometimes known as the "Yellow Hat Sect," in contrast to the other three schools which are the "Red Hat Sects."
Nearly all Mongolian Buddhist monks belong to the Gelug order.
- Jo Nang
- Named for Jomonang, the site of an early monastery
- Yumo Mikyo Dorje
- Favorite tantras
- Kalachakra (Dro lineage)
- Major monasteries
- nearly 40, of which the major one is Tsangwa (in Dzamthang County, Sichuan)
The zhentong / rangtong debate was an important episode in Tibetan intellectual history. The Jonang view (called "Great Madhyamaka"), which championed zhentong, was declared to be heretical by the fifth Dalai Lama and suppressed in the 17th century.
- ↑ Wylie: ris-med