Travels in the Netherworld: Buddhist Popular Narratives of by Bryan J. Cuevas

By Bryan J. Cuevas

In Travels within the Netherworld, Bryan J. Cuevas examines a desirable yet little-known style of Tibetan narrative literature concerning the délok, traditional women and men who declare to have died, traveled via hell, after which back from the afterlife. those narratives take pleasure in audiences starting from the main refined monastic students to pious townsfolk, villagers, and nomads. Their bills emphasize the common Buddhist ideas of impermanence and worldly agony, the fluctuations of karma, and the feasibility of acquiring a positive rebirth via advantage and benefit. offering a transparent, certain research of 4 shiny return-from-death stories, together with the tales of a Tibetan housewife, a lama, a tender noble lady, and a Buddhist monk, Cuevas argues that those narratives show principles approximately dying and the afterlife that held huge forex between all sessions of devoted Buddhists in Tibet.

Relying on a variety of conventional Tibetan assets, Buddhist canonical scriptures, scholastic textbooks, ritual and meditation manuals, and clinical treatises, as well as the délok works themselves, Cuevas surveys a huge variety of renowned Tibetan Buddhist rules approximately loss of life and loss of life. He explores ideals in regards to the vulnerability of the soul and its trip past dying, karmic retribution and the terrors of hell, the character of demons and demonic ownership, ghosts, and reanimated corpses. Cuevas argues that those outstanding money owed convey flexibility among social and non secular different types which are conventionally polarized and concludes that, opposite to the authorized knowledge, such inflexible divisions as elite and people, monastic and lay faith will not be sufficiently consultant of conventional Tibetan Buddhism at the floor. This research bargains leading edge views on renowned faith in Tibet and fills a niche in a huge box of Tibetan literature.

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