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Removing The Sheen From Buddhism
(So deeply different from Agnivayu et al of the dreary Loser Club and their childish whining of "I'm not gay. I'm not gay. [i]You're gay! Everyone else is gay!")[/i]

<img src='http://www.india-forum.com/forums/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/laugh.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':lol:' /> Don't worry loser I am quite secure in who I am. You are the one who brought it up.

What's that? No! Not yet another post of your whining above that! Ugh, let's go then. "58"? Uh, isn't that somewhere around the age my dad's at? (I only claimed a grand, exalted and respectable ancientry for myself. Not the *Pleiocene*.) And that makes your blundering guess but yet [i]another
example of your hopeless telepathy/how you're always wrong. (Maybe you should stop tripping over yourself with your bad guessing games - it's only exposing more of your unreliability.)

Oh I give up with your incessant error-prone whining and whinging. I really should stop encouraging more of your repeat response. Besides, it's not like I've ever read you say anything sensible let alone anything funny (even more criminal) - and I'm not even getting paid for it.

<img src='http://www.india-forum.com/forums/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/laugh.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':lol:' />

What an angry little man. Remember, Screaming is not going to make up for your inadequacies ( reminds me of an old centrifugal flow engine ).

Usual mindless hate mongering from a misguided missile.

This thread's been so totally derailed.

Finally something sensible. Unusual for you, but you are slowly improving. Stay away from the glue and paint thinner, you may have damaged one too many neurons.
Why don't you guys take your spat offline instead of turning the thread into shit with irrelevant stuff.

The thread has been derailed for a while.
^ Done already.

But yeah, sorry 'bout that. (AV lied unforgivably about the Gods, and so I deliberately lightly egged him on for a bit... But shouldn't have done it at the expense of sacrificing bandwidth and the continuity of the thread/the seriousness of its topic.) Intend/hope to eventually delete my irrelevant and silly stuff.

[quote name='Bharatvarsh2' date='10 August 2010 - 04:25 AM' timestamp='1281394043' post='107831']That is like saying Panini is an Afghan as that idiot Amartya Sen tried to claim, simply absurd.[/quote]Hmmm, the mention of Afghanistan reminds me of a blatant error I made in #39, perhaps because I always forget Afghanistan:

Quote:Missionary religions are simply a nuisance. Further to the west, the GrecoRomans fortunately didn't take to Buddhism greatly (it was an alien religion in more ways than one) and stuck to their Gods like reliable, loyal, sensible people would. And so, one doesn't hear of Zeus and the other GR Gods being "bodhisattvas" - which of course they aren't and wouldn't ever be.
The last bit of the highlighted line is correct, but not the start of the statement. I don't know how I managed to overlook something that was known even to me for a long time:

In Afghanistan, Buddhism predictably attempted to subordinate the Hellenistic Gods to Buddhism. (For example, can even see this in the period of Greek-influenced Buddhist art, where Hellenistic Gods and heroes are misused.)

Of course, in reality - and this goes without saying - the GrecoRoman Gods have absolutely nothing to do with Buddhism, including how they are not in any way bodhisattvas or related to the Dhamma at all (<- all that is mere Buddhist invention to set itself up in regions influenced by Hellenismos, similar to what was done in the case of E and C Asian religions). The Gods of Hellenismos are not subject to Buddhist claims on them, let alone subordinate to Buddhist teachings and the Buddha. The Buddhists (and that includes any Greeks settled in Afghanistan who converted to Buddhism) do not know the GrecoRoman Gods. It is the Hellenes - those who never forsook their religion/Gods - who know their Gods.
Another episode of Western love towards Buddhism: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ethan-nich...71972.html

Quote:Critical theorist Slavoj Zizek has an interestingly harsh critique of Western Buddhism and the meditation tools it employs. Framing his critique in Marxist terms, he argues that Buddhism is the perfect spiritual tradition to be co-opted by our self-absorbed, destructive, and consumeristic society. For him, Buddhism represents the perfect ideology for passive acquiescence to the world as it is, a panacea of inner peace that fits neatly into an advertising culture where, by now, "be present" could just as well be the slogan of a credit card company as an instruction from a meditation teacher.

Quote:In other words, for Zizek, Buddhism, in the context of a Western consumer culture, allows the individual to believe he is transforming his mind without actually changing the conditions of suffering that shape the individual's society. This represents a dangerous type of inner peace - a peace not based on true insight into the interdependent nature of reality, but instead based on withdrawal into a mental cocoon, some personal oasis isolated from the turmoil of the world outside. In this cocoon, the whole world can go to hell, and the meditator can -- put simply -- be ok with that. In fact, the meditator can even be a willing actor in a system aiding great oppression, and still live at ease, because it's "all good" anyway. By practicing "acceptance," we simply become comfortable with the status quo. Of course, as is true of most things said by contemporary critical theorists, Zizek's best point is made more convincingly and artfully by someone else, in this case Stevie Wonder: "Make sure when you say you're in it but not of it, you're not helping turn this into the place sometimes called hell."
Post 1/?

Several posts about the rediff link further below mentioned at rajeev2004.blogspot.com/2010/10/true-story-of-hindu-kings-destroying.html ["the true story of hindu kings destroying buddhist/jain shrines. they did not"] where Rajeev speculates - also with reference to another's speculation - that Ayyappa was a Buddhist deity of some sort. (The audience at the blog doesn't seem to want to ask some basic questions.)


Rajeev Srinivasan's old Rediff piece titled "The Buddhist Connection: Sabarimala and the Tibetans"

Quote:It is a most unusual pilgrimage to a most unusual deity; for Sri Ayyappan is Hariharaputra, the Son of Lord Vishnu and Lord Siva -- and this is the only ancient temple to Him.

It is likely that the unusual myth of the Son of Vishnu and Siva is due to another historical event: a reconciliation between Saivite and Vaishnavite Hindus. Unlike other parts of the South, where the two were often in conflict, Kerala has typically seen harmony between them.

I have been on the Sabarimala pilgrimage several times, and it is a remarkable experience: one is swept away by the palpable tide of faith all around one. The climb up from the Pamba riverbank to the sanctum is difficult: up steep slopes, through dense forests. Since you walk uphill barefoot, with a small sack on your head (a two part sack, representing one's deeds, both sins and good deeds), it is not easy: but the pilgrims chant that the sharp pebbles underfoot are as mere flowers.

It's no more "mythical" than say Kumarasambhavam. And there's certainly nothing "unusual" about it.

But I have never heard that Mohini and Shiva brought forth Ayyappa for the purpose of working some kind of conciliation between Vaishnavas and Shaivas *, but rather for the usual objective: that the God called for to destroy the oppressive Mahishi, the sister of MahishAsura, specifically should not be either Shiva or Vishnu as she had stipulated this in a boon she'd obtained.

The modern assumption/interpretation on Ayyappa's origins being for the purpose of bringing Shaivas and Vaishnavas closer (Hindu traditions on the matter and what the chronicles on Ayyappa say be damned) - seems to be *reaching*.

(That Ayyappa and his origins may also additionally have had and still have the effect of attracting and joining both Vaishnavas and Shaivas or any Hindu is another matter.)

* - There are cases where the two Gods manifest as one for purposes that include showing that they are unified or one (depending on how you see it):

e.g. the ShankaraNarayana moorty (a manifestation distinct from that other combination of Vishnu and Shiva known as Harihara) IIRC declares to his pashus that Vishnu is not different from Shiva. Come wedding time, he assumes a Shiva-only form - since Gomathi, being a manifestation of Uma, can't marry Shiva as the ShankaraNarayana moorty since one half of it is her own brother. So for the Hindu public he changes to the solo Shiva form.

- On the other hand, there are other combined forms of these Gods that are not really for the purpose of "unifying" any Shiva-only and Vishnu-only peoples. E.g. Vishnu's manifestation as Dattatreya - who is a combination of Brahma, Vishnu and Maheshwara - isn't for the purpose of uniting any adamant individual-God worshippers who can't see the relation. It is just a Trimoorti form, for the purpose of being ... a Trimoorti form (again, the very form of the Vedam), thereby representing the vedam and the praNava mantram.

[As far as I know, Ayyappa is not the son of the moorty known as Harihara (i.e. that particular manifestation) - he is called Hariharaputra because he is the son of Hari *as Mohini* and Shiva (Hara), as per the narratives concerning Ayyappa.]

2. Let's get an easy item out of the way first:

Quote:The revered Patriarch Bodhidharma (Daruma in Japanese) from Kodungallur was the originator of the Zen sect (dhyana in Sanskrit, Ch'an in Chinese) -- he went to the Shao-Lin monastery in China (420-479 CE), and he took the martial art of kalari payat there for the protection of the unarmed monks, whence the various martial arts of East Asia. According to Chinese legend, Bodhidharma also created the tea plant, by tearing off his eyelids and planting them in the ground: presumably this means he also took the tea plant with him.

- Bodhidharma - IIRC an ex-Brahmana (i.e. ex-Hindu) convert to Buddhism - did indeed use Kalari payattu to create *Shaolin* Gong Fu. But the "various martial arts of E Asia" are *not* all owing to Buddhism as the above implies (as an aside, if people are going to be focussing on giving credits: Kalari Payattu is *Hindu*, not Buddhist, plus note also that Hindus had already been introducing and innovating martial arts in E (and SE) Asia before Buddhism even set foot there). More importantly, several other, more ancient martial arts of E Asia are from Daoism - more ancient than the Hindu presence and subsequent contribution in E Asia. The origins of these ancient martial arts are even confirmed in the oral traditions concerning the Daoist Gods, and the (much smaller) collection of narratives on the Gods that got written down a lot later. These martial arts are generally Tai Chi based, rather like how various Hindu martial arts of India (as also Hindu religious dance forms such as Bharata Natyam) were derived from Hindu Dharmic religion's Yoga.

So: No, Bodhidharma/Buddhism is not the origin of all the various martial arts of E Asia as the above implies. That is simply the usual unfounded Indian ueber-superiority complex.

- "presumably this means he also took the tea plant with him"

Buddhism is frequently and very unreasonably credited for every Chinese thing. The way every Taoist ritual that also "magically" happens to exist simultaneously in Buddhism is therefore now described as having had Buddhist influences. Except that people easily forget the following:

a. those "Buddhist" rituals in China that have a grand similarity with age-old Hindu rituals actually got them from Hindu religion.

b. In fact, the pre-Buddhist Hindu presence in China and Japan rubbed off some Hindu rituals. So, as was already stated elsewhere, Taoism and Shinto did not get Hindu Gods and Hindu rituals from Buddhism but from .... Hindu religion. (The way Shintos use a few specifically Hindu rituals on the *Hindu* forms of Hindu Gods - rather than the Buddhist re-packaging of Hindu Gods - and this is recognised as *Hindu* religion, *not* Buddhism.)

c. And most important to note is that certain ritual practices present in both Taoism and Buddhism - as also Gods, religious architecture and moorty-fashioning, indigenous moorty related rituals, etc. - are actually from Taoism, which Buddhism took over (even though they bear no relevance to and have no meaning and no purpose in Buddhism).

Any actual *proof* for tea in China coming from Buddhism? "Presumably" doesn't suffice and is just leading the public.

Continued in next.
Post 2/?

Now for the stuff that begins with the line:

Quote:The circumstantial evidence for the Buddhist nature of Lord Ayyappan is compelling.


(This is going to be long.)

Quote:For one, the devotees chant: "Swamiye saranam Ayyappa," so close to the Buddhist mantra: "Buddham saranam gacchami, Sangham saranam gacchami, Dhammam saranam gacchami."

Mantras are a concept that Buddhism got from Hindu religion (just like Mudras, etc). In fact, the forms (and in some cases even exact words) of certain mantras used in Buddhism are of Hindu origin. (Also: just because Buddhists in, say, Japan also use OM doesn't mean "OM is therefore Buddhist in origin".)

However, we're not talking of any general case of mantras, but of the clinching evidence necessary to prove that the famous one-line mantram for Ayyappa is in fact somehow intimately or peculiarly related to the Buddhist mantra given above, and not just yet another in a whole stream of Hindu mantras to Hindu Gods.

So, in what sense is it considered similar? Obviously not in the exact words used, nor their number: one is 3 words, the other 9 - or a set of 3 triplets, each ending in gachChaami. Not only does swAmiye sharaNam ayyappa not end in gacchami as the triplet of the Buddhist mantra consistently does, but considering just one triplet then: the number of syllables and feet don't match. 3+3+3 syllables to Ayyappa's mantra, 2+3+3 syllables to each of the 3 triplets in the Buddhist mantra. Surely it is not about the syllable 'lengths', they don't match either. Nor is it any matching assonance or alliteration that I can see.

I may be missing something deep here, but the only aspect that I can see as matching is the word "sharaNam" being in the middle of a set of 3 words making up (a portion of) the mantram in both cases. Apparently this is all the evidence that such speculation demands?

In that case, I will simply say this: raamam sharaNam mama

(from the raama rahasya upaniShat I think, yet to be confirmed).

Maybe they will next argue that Rama is "therefore" a character from Buddhism too?

OK: turns out the "raamam sharaNam mama" mantram from the raama rahasya upaniShat apparently belongs to the Atharva Vedam. (Would the theorisers next be arguing that this upaniShat or even the entire Atharva Vedam - or even by extension the Trayi too - "must therefore be" Buddhist text?)

More simply, the fact that there is already a mantram of the form <word> sharaNam <word> in Hindu religion - such as the very famous "rAmam sharaNam mama" - means that we need not at all look to Buddhism etc in desperation for the origins of "Swamiye Sharanam Ayappa".

Alternatively, one can try using Rajeev's sort of logic to show that the form of Ayyappa's mantram actually proves his Hindu nature/identity: Raama being Hari being Mohini the Mum of Ayyappa (and everyone else), it makes perfect logical *sense* that Ayyappa's mantra would be of a similar form - in the sense I imagine Rajeev looks to find it similar - as this mantram of Raama's.


Quote:"Furthermore, the very sitting posture of the Ayyappan deity is suggestive: almost every Buddhist image anywhere, including those sometimes unearthed in the fields of Travancore by farmers, is in sitting position. Whereas practically no other deity in Kerala is in that posture."
The argument is absurd.

First of all, where Buddha is seen depicted sitting on the ground (which is most of the time), it is as far as I can tell usually the Padmaasanaa Yoga position. You can Google for Buddha pictures if you can't remember how the Buddha is generally shown sitting.

There are images of the Buddha in other stances, including standing up, but we were concerned with Buddha's most oft-seen sitting pose:

- While the sitting posture of Buddha most frequently depicted is the padmAsanA, what Ayappa is doing *isn't* the padmAsanA. And I've never seen the Buddha depicted doing Ayyappa's pose.

But then, it's one of the defining features of the Ayyappa moorty. Just like various other Hindu Gods have their iconic poses.

- Besides, padmAsanA isn't unique to Buddha. Nor was he the original to strike the pose (so it wouldn't have proven anything had padmAsanA been the case here). It was done by the Hindu Gods since long before (and by Hindus too), since it's part of Hindu Yoga: e.g. Durga IIRC is in padmAsanA (?)* when she transcends the three guNas after killing the asuras described in the DM [Durga = known as "yogaje (alt: yogagnye) yogasambhoote"]. Certainly her husband Shiva, when seated in Yoga at ground-level, is in that yogic pose.

As for Kovil vigrahas: The legs folded in padmAsanA is the very pose of the kAmAkShI moolamoorty. (Uma sits and stands in different poses in different Kovils. They are her *iconic* sitting and standing poses, each specific to the moorty of a manifestation, all famously described.)

*And umA in padmAsanA seems to me to also be confirmed by kAlidAsa in his SD.

On that, and before I continue, Rajeev's statement "whereas practically no other deity in Kerala is in (sitting) posture" is a red herring. Kerala is not a vacuum. It has been an entrenched Tamizh Hindu view that Ayyappa is "Tamizh", i.e. belonging to or associated with the ancient territory that had Tamizh presence which included some parts of all 3 other southern states. Or some kind of claim from ancientry and ancient familiarity. In fact, precisely since this assumption was always considered a given in TN, even the dravoodian chauvinists of TN claimed the God as being *Tamizh* ("ancient dravoodianism" in DMK parlance is Tamizh, not Malayalam- or Kannada- or Telugu-speaking, sorry, it's a very particular angry clique) - even when they merely tried to use Ayyappa as a prop against other Hindu Gods/religion.

In any case, while possessive Malayali Hindus can expend inordinate amounts of energy trying to stop the Greedy Tamizh Hindoos from boldly eyeing the magnificence that lies in the now-properly-delineated Kerala, it's still not going to change anything. The point is: don't just look in Kerala, look across the border into TN to see what type of vigrahas Tamizh Hindus have.

So now, on to the more interesting case for this situation: the famous pose of Yoga Narasimha when he meditates (i.e does Yoga) after he kills the rakshasa is - as his moorty name also implies - a *Yoga* pose. (Narasimha does Yoga to neutralise the krodha he had to first generate in order to rid the world of the villainous rakshasa. Same as with Durga after she kills the Asuras.) There are temples of the Yoga Narasimha in TN. In this pose, his knees have elevation from the feet/ground level. And this pose is Far Closer to that of his son Ayyappa's than the padmAsanA is.

Here, you can judge for yourself. To the left is a traditional Tamizh Hindu rendition of the Yoga Narasimha in the style that TN moorties get carved - and, as I said, moorties of him in this pose are to be found in Kovils in my home-state. To the right is a traditional (and famous) Tamizh Hindu rendition of Ayyappa - it's a Shastraic depiction of not so much the live presence of the vigraha as the live form, but with the moorty still in his famous position:

[Image: HariAndPutra.jpg]

Magnificent. As always.

Note Ayyappa's customary moorty pose. (The other famous depiction of him that I know of is paintings of him sitting on Indra-as-the-Tiger, surrounded by other Devas-as-Tigers. Edited: Lion corrected to Tiger. Was thinking of the striped big cat, of course, but stopped thinking when it came to typing.)

And now do a comparison between the pose of my Diamond-Nails Father and that of his Son Ayyappa - and compare them again with a Google pic of Buddha's usual sitting pose.

Notice how the Yoga Narasimha's sitting posture is intermediate to that of Ayyappa and Buddha. (E.g. Narasimha's feet are at least crossed, which - although it's not crossed upwards - is slightly closer in that respect to the padmAsanA than Ayyappa's feet which aren't even crossed at all.)

Still, this doesn't make either Narasimha or Ayyappa any more Buddhist though - just like it didn't kAmAkShI or other seated Yoga moolamoortis of umA. They're still just Hindu Gods in a range of Hindu sitting poses, with Ayyappa fitting in that range.

But again, to use Rajeev's particular logic in this: Yoga Narasimha being Hari, it makes perfect logical *sense* that Ayyappa's posture would be very similar in form (in the sense Rajeev finds it similar) to his parent Hari's posture.

To be cont. Another day probably. What a drag, I don't have time for this.

Quote:'Hsuen Tsang refers to Avalokitesvara on the Potala in the following words, summarised by Waters (1905): ''In the south of the country near the sea was the Mo-lo-ya (Malaya) mountain, with its lofty cliffs and ridges and deep valleys and gullies, on which were sandal, camphor and other trees. To the east of this was Pu-ta-lo-ka (Potalaka) mountain with steep narrow paths over its cliffs and gorges in irregular confusion...'' '

All of this is still true; Hsuen Tsang's description could easily be of contemporary Sabarimala. The only difference perhaps is that the forests are no longer so dense. Pilgrims believe that those who ignore the strict penances -- abstinence from alcohol, smoking, meat-eating and sex -- are in danger of being attacked by wild animals while on their trek. However, there are not too many large animals in these forests any more, as a result of human encroachment.

Lokesh Chandra continues: 'Hsuen Tsang clearly says that Avalokitesvara at Potala sometimes takes the form of Isvara (Siva) and sometimes that of a Pasupata yogin. In fact, it was Siva who was metamorphosed into Avalokitesvara...The image at Potalaka which was originally Siva, was deemed to be Avalokitesvara when Buddhism became dominant... The Potalaka Lokesvara and the Thousand-armed Avalokitesvara have echoes of Siva and Vishnu, of Hari and Hara.'

'...Lord Ayyappa of Sabarimala... could have been the Potala Lokesvara of Buddhist literature. The makara jyoti of Sabarimala recalls Potala's "brilliance"... The long, arduous and hazardous trek through areas known to be inhabited by elephants and other wildlife to Sabarimala is spoken of in the pilgrimage to Potala Lokesvara. The Buddhist character of Ayyappa is explicit in his merger with Dharma-sasta. Sasta is a synonym of Lord Buddha.'

(I'll get to the last quoted line in another post.)

Yes, it is known that there was a significant Hindu presence in Tibet's population: with special focus on Shiva-Shakti - physical Kailasa is located in Tibet, a sacred Hindu site for Hindus since ancient times, hence also a centre for pilgrimage since ages - but also worship of other Gods, including Vishnu, Lakshmi, Mahendra, Saraswati, etc. But when Buddhism took over the region, even as it drove out Bon to establish itself, it masked the Hindu identities of the Gods already present as it usurped (and then further imported from the Indian NE) the Hindu practices concerning them. The Hindu identity of Uma and Shiva (the latter is Mahakala here, even the depictions are the same as that of Mahakaleshwara with Tara as in India's Hindu NE) was masked by Avalokiteshwara as a Buddhist character. The consort Tara, while retaining her Hindu DMV name and various Hindu-origin rituals, likewise was masked by being covered with the identity of a Buddhist character.

And it's called Buddhism now. Where else is this called Buddhism (not counting areas influenced by such Tibetan Buddhism of course)? What else could have given rise to it if not a pre-existing Hindu base? Nothing.

But I am not surprised that Tibetan Buddhism would carry over any originally Hindu Sthala PuraNas and other traditions related to the Shiva (and his wife) that they had taken over, such as how that particular Shiva manifestation could be connected to Kerala. Though I do find it more than likely that they masked even those traditions with a Buddhist veneer too: hence their version of such events would of course be that "Avalokiteshwara is connected with Kerala", rather than this being the Hindu identity of the Hindu God Shiva.

It still doesn't imply that Kerala's Hariharaputra - known also as the ShaivaDharmaRakShita for being the saviour of Shaiva Dharma - was supposedly a figure of Buddhism. Still waiting: where is the actual evidence for this claim?

All that has been admitted to (although it was common knowledge to Hindus) is that Avalokiteshwara + Tara, their homes and their practices are taken from Hindu religion. (And it isn't the only deeply Hindu thing on Shiva-Shakti that Tibetan Buddhism took and masked and renamed and repackaged. A very important *core Hindu* ritual practice also, complete with the Yoga that is an intrinsic part of it. And most importantly, the masking of the very identity of the Goal of it.)

It's the hijacking of Hindu religion, but the modern Hindus in favour of believing in some Syncretist 'Indian' Religion In The Past will think it's all a lovely fairy tale. The actual truth is not at all so pretty.

But again: where in all the speculation offered is the PROOF that the temple area in Kerala didn't remain continuously Hindu, even as in Tibet the Shiva-Shakti identity was being subsumed and masked and any memory of its Hindu relations to Kerala were being converted into a Buddhist story about Buddhist characters? Let alone any evidence given that Ayyappa's origins had anything to do with Buddhism?

Quote:The Potalaka Lokesvara and the Thousand-armed Avalokitesvara have echoes of Siva and Vishnu, of Hari and Hara.'

'...Lord Ayyappa of Sabarimala... could have been the Potala Lokesvara of Buddhist literature.

"could have been"?

Again, they admit to no more than speculation, yet Hindus are expected - as ever (and by other Hindus once more, who else) - to just roll over and admit this absurd speculation as true/a possible truth. In contravention to their own tradition of their history, of course.

Speculation. And of the most dubious nature. Creating a fantasy that actually hides a less pleasant reality.

The events on the Tibetan Buddhist end clearly show takeover of Shaiva-Shaktam there. Meanwhile, the Hindu traditions in India only recall and record Hindu Gods. And in all this, we are asked to create an opening to insert badly-supported *speculation* of an entirely unnecessary Buddhist middle part to the story - only because it will make all those clammering for Hindu-Buddhist amity in Kerala's past or wherever happy? Speculation with as "evidence" things like Ayyappa's pose - a pose no where like that of the Buddha - and Ayyappa's mantram (at least as close to the rAma mantram) and oh yeah, the rather common title "Shaastaa" (see future post).

In any case, their fundamental contention of a happy marriage lies in the dust: in Kerala there was no amity between H and B, including as regards this God (Ayyappa), as anyone who knows his names would be aware. Of course opportunists would declare that any friction would then "prove" that it "must have been evil brahmoons who would have persecuted Buddhism away from there" and took over some "Buddhist Deity" whose alleged Buddhist nature hasn't been proven at all, and the only arguments given thus far for his identity can most certainly be read in the opposite direction as supporting his Hindu identity instead.


Quote:The Buddhist character of Ayyappa is explicit in his merger with Dharma-sasta. Sasta is a synonym of Lord Buddha
I have heard this stupid argument before - never from Hindus of course, only from ignorant anti-Hindus.

Anyway, let's pretend surprise.

What the? So Buddha has sole dibs on the name Shaasta now?

How is this supposed to be an argument?

Let me see if I understand this right. Rajeev's argument that "since Hariharaputra Ayyappa's famous other name is DharmaShaastaa, it probably means he just has to be identified with the Buddha", would also mean that, say, Skanda, whose other name is BrahmaShaastaa, is also to be identified with the Buddha.

But No.

Why not? Simple.

Shaastaa simply means teacher. Like Buddha means ~enlightened being (standard bad translation). Shaastaa *can* be applied to any of the Hindu Gods and Dharmic characters, and it is certainly applied to some as their rightful names, as just seen. The Shakyamuni Buddha is just *popular* under the name of Buddha, and it makes sense that he would also have been known under the (rather generic, but appropriate) title Shaastaa.

Anyway. Kartik, the Swaminatha, is otherwise also known as the BrahmaShaastaa, because he had to teach BrahmA the Vedam, BrahmaVidya again (and also interrogated him on the meaning of the praNava mantram - see his (S)Kanda purANam, TN. It is all just for his leela of course). The BrahmaShaastaa moorti is one of many episodes in Murugan's life, it is his Own Name.

Anyway, even the title "Buddha" is not unique to the Siddhaartha Gautama Buddha.

e.g. OM buddhAya namaH is in the gaNesha sahasranAmam
(the Samskrit language version composed in the south - it is South Indian since gaNesha's other names in there also consistently designate him as the elder brother of Kumaran, just like Shwedarka Ganapati Mantram - not really sure what it is called/spelled like - would be SI too, since it addresses Gajanana with "kumaragurave" - teacher of Kumaran - possibly an allusion to the Mango event which has also been narrated in the KP and elsewhere). Anyway, "Buddha" as one of the names/epithets of gaNesha isn't referring to the Buddha of Buddhism either. It's a title of gaNapati, the elephant headed son of gaNapati (Shiva's Own Name).

DharmaShaastaa is simply one of the names of Ayyappa. What does it matter if Buddha is also called Shaasta? Buddha's name of "Gautama" isn't Buddhist either nor unique to the Buddha: e.g. Gautama muni of Hindu RuShi-dom (husband of Ahalya, see Ramayanam) who predates Buddha of Buddhism.

Now, while the Amarakosha (text which lists names of various Hindu Devas & Asuras and prominent Indic personages, among other matters) lists "shaasta" as one of the "names" (rather titles/epithets) of Buddhism's Buddha, it doesn't mean it's exclusively his name and no one else's. Because, the very same Amarakosha also lists "muni" as a synonym for the Shakyamuni Buddha. Now are all the Hindu RuShis who have ever been referred in Hindus' sacred texts as "Muni" to no longer have a right to that title just because the much later Siddhaartha Gautama became The Muni in Buddhism and so also acquired the title?


As for DharmaShaastaa, as Hindus of the region know, he has 2 wives - the Devis Poorna and Pushkala who are worshipped with him. Meanwhile the same God is a permanent bachelor in the Ayyappa form.* (C.f. like Murugan can be a permanent bachelor when he is manifested as the eternal babe, just like Ganapati - eternal babyness of these two confirmed from texts like Shankaracharya's SL - but then SubrahmaNya has the 2 all-important wives Valli and Devayanai in his manifestations as a slightly older youth, as confirmed by various writers on Muruga. See Kanda Shasti Kavacham, where the author declares Valli Amman to be his eternal Mother and Karthik to be his Father, Shankaracharya's Subrahmanya Bhujangam, Kandar purANam which documents Kumaran's marriage to Valli, etc. Then we have Ganapati, who is also the perpetual celibate in some versions, while he is married in other manifestations. See the pattern? The children of UmaShiva are forever children and/or also young brahmacharis and also married youths (whose children are all the Hindus) - depends on the manifestations of these Gods.)

Back to the DharmaShaastaa moorti's case. Is the shAkyamuni Buddha married to Poorna and Pushkala? No? Is Buddha to be magically equated with DharmaShaastaa then just 'cause someone also conferred the name "Shaasta" on Buddha? Then do people reason that he must also be equated to the (far more ancient) Gautama muni just 'cause Shakyamuni Buddha's parents conferred the name "Gautama" on Shakyamuni Buddha and he eventually became known among his followers as their main Muni? And Buddhism's Buddha I suppose must now also be equated with Vighneshwara then, seeing as how one of Vighneshwara's justly-deserved titles is also Buddha?

No. They're just titles. And - like in the case of "Gautama" - common names.

The Hindu Gods and RuShis are distinct from each other. And they are most certainly distinct from the Shakyamuni Buddha.

Plus why the peculiar focus on only the name (Dharma)Shaastaa of Ayyappa?

His other very well-known name (a name under which Muttuswami DikShitar has predictably composed a kriti) is HariHaraPutra. Now, is The Shakyamuni Buddha a putra of Hari and Hara?


- Some of the titles that Ayyappa/DharmaShaastaa shares with his brothers (usually because they all inherited these from their father): e.g. gaNapati and gaNeshwara which he shares with his brother with the gaja mukha (and which both of them share with Shiva himself, whose Own Name it also is - see Yajur Vedam I think), while titles like senApati and devasenaadhipaH (sp?) are shared with his brother Shanmukha. Like his brothers, DharmaShaastaa is also called Bhavaniputra and Parvati-Tanaya since he is the son of Bhava's wife, Parvati.

- Other well-known epithets of DharmaShaastaa include Shaivadharmarakshitah, for protecting/upholding the Shaiva path of Hindu Dharma (as he does other *Hindu* paths of the region. Specifically not the Bauddha one).

- And he inherited his Parents' Own Names too, such as Damodara (of Vishnu). And also the Own Names of several Vedic Gods (but this sharing of names often happens with other Hindu Gods).

- More interestingly, perhaps, are descriptive epithets like Samavedaparayana and Yagnyapriya (rather a common title among Hindu Gods) and more along those lines: he who is fond of Vedic sacrifices. And that tells us what Dharma he is the Shaastaa of: Vaidika Dharma. I.e. he is the Teacher of the Dharmic religion of the Hindu Gods, the religion of the Vedam.

Specifically not the Bauddha Dharma which is known to reject yagnyas/the religion of the Hindus.

Why ignore such informative names?

After all, if the generic "Shaastaa" title of Dharmashaastaa is to be allowed as "evidence" for something, so is Yagnyapriya, Hariharaputra, etc. (Hari and Hara being Gods of the Vedam too and having *everything* to do with yagnyas.)

Latching onto just one thing while ignoring other equally admissable evidence is not an argument.

Anyone can play name games. But people who can't resist playing should do so honestly.

It is disingenuous of Rajeev Srinivasan - as it is of the ambedkar site of neo 'Buddhists' famous for needling Hindus with this same topic, as also of the angry Sinhalese known to taunt Shri Lankan Tamizh Hindus as "actually" worshipping the Buddha ("So Convert Already") for being devotees of Ayyappa, just because of the superficial similarity in the accorded title of "Shaastaa" -

it is disingenuous of all these people to not give equal mention to the Great Many other names of DharmaShaastaa - names which, when combined altogether, show who he is really perceived as (versus who he is not), as opposed to them focussing only on the name that they imagine can prove their pet theory.

Because these excluded other names are also Ayyappa's Own Names, including his more famous ones like Hariharaputra. And because when taken together, instead of just Shaastaa on its own, these names do not point to the Shakyamuni Buddha at all. Just like GaNesha's epithet of Buddha doesn't point to the one known with the epithet Shakyamuni Buddha.

It is also disingenuous for these people not to point out what Shaastaa literally means - and hence why the Buddha can be known as Shasta *entirely independent from* how Ayyappa can have the name DharmaShaastaa. Again: just like Buddha is a 'common' title that can be conferred to any number of deserving; and in Buddhism's case it is the title conferred on the Indian prince whose actual/birth name was Siddhaartha Gautama.

Despite some angry Sinhalese Buddhists' ignorant claims, the Shri Lankan Hindus (just like those of S-India) are not worshipping the Buddha. They are worshipping the Yagnyapriya Damodara Shaivadharmarakshita etc Hariharapriya Bhavaniputra who is most famously known under names like Hariharaputra DharmaShaastaa Ayyappa.

And this point of the speculation ("Shaastaa" as automatically implying the Buddha) is also thrown out. Even something as common-knowledge as Murugan being well-known under one of his other names of BrahmaShaastaa would throw that point of insistence out. (I am not suprised that genuine Buddhists - forget the neo claimants to the title such as at the ambedkarites.org - don't know all this. But that those of Hindu ancestry should suffer from a peculiar amnesia concerning these things does baffle.)

The fact is, Buddha's famous titles were never unique. *Because* they are common titles: teacher, enlightened one, muni. That Hindu Gods and RuShis should have such titles is only natural - which is why several have long had them.

7. [color="#0000FF"]Yet more on the following bit again:[/color]

Quote:'Hsuen Tsang refers to Avalokitesvara on the Potala in the following words, summarised by Waters (1905): ''In the south of the country near the sea was the Mo-lo-ya (Malaya) mountain, with its lofty cliffs and ridges and deep valleys and gullies, on which were sandal, camphor and other trees. To the east of this was Pu-ta-lo-ka (Potalaka) mountain with steep narrow paths over its cliffs and gorges in irregular confusion...'' '

All of this is still true; Hsuen Tsang's description could easily be of contemporary Sabarimala.


Lokesh Chandra continues: 'Hsuen Tsang clearly says that Avalokitesvara at Potala sometimes takes the form of Isvara (Siva) and sometimes that of a Pasupata yogin. In fact, it was Siva who was metamorphosed into Avalokitesvara...The image at Potalaka which was originally Siva, was deemed to be Avalokitesvara when Buddhism became dominant... The Potalaka Lokesvara and the Thousand-armed Avalokitesvara have echoes of Siva and Vishnu, of Hari and Hara.'

'...Lord Ayyappa of Sabarimala... could have been the Potala Lokesvara of Buddhist literature. The makara jyoti of Sabarimala recalls Potala's "brilliance"... The long, arduous and hazardous trek through areas known to be inhabited by elephants and other wildlife to Sabarimala is spoken of in the pilgrimage to Potala Lokesvara. The Buddhist character of Ayyappa is explicit in his merger with Dharma-sasta. Sasta is a synonym of Lord Buddha.'

It is known that Avalokiteshwara's legendary abode (the "Potalaka") has variously been located in several Asian countries' southern regions - whenever Buddhists were looking to 'discover' (appoint) physical locations for it. Including, for instance, South Korea's Buddhist Pagoda at the mountainous Naksan, which apparently also came to be known as/identified with Potalaka after the Avalokiteshwara myth-making had developed this idea and exported it to Korea. (I had thought there was one in the Malay part of Southern Thailand...? Would also fit with word games on "Moloya".)

Anyway, the following contains another example of the same claim for elsewhere in India. In fact, I have seen this claim *more* often than that of Shabarimalai (still doesn't make it true).


Quote:Western scholars have not reached a consensus on the origin of the reverence for Avalokiteśvara. Some have suggested that Avalokiteśvara, along with many other supernatural beings in Buddhism, was a borrowing or absorption by Mahayana Buddhism of one or more Hindu deities, in particular Shiva or Vishnu.[citation needed]

[color="#800080"](Yes. And also a heavy borrowing from Taoism and its Gods - depending on what part of Asia/the sphere of Asian religious influence you are considering. Traditional Asian Deities that the locals of indigenous religions were attached to were renamed and dubbed "Avalokiteshvara" or the Bodhisattva or the Buddha. Hindus do *know* this, right?)[/color]

The Japanese scholar Shu Hikosaka on the basis of his study of Buddhist scriptures, ancient Tamil literary sources, as well as field survey, proposes the hypothesis that, the ancient mount Potalaka, the residence of Avalokiteśvara described in the Gandavyuha Sutra and Xuanzang’s Records, is the real mountain Potikai or Potiyil situated at Ambasamudram in Tirunelveli district, Tamil Nadu.[8] Shu also says that mount Potiyil/Potalaka has been a sacred place for the people of South India from time immemorial. With the spread of Buddhism in the region beginning at the time of the great king Aśoka in the third century B.C.E., it became a holy place also for Buddhists who gradually became dominant as a number of their hermits settled there. The local people, though, mainly remained followers of the Hindu religion. The mixed Hindu-Buddhist cult culminated in the formation of the figure of Avalokiteśvara[9] .

(Last line: A mixed "Hindu-Buddhist cult"? How? In practice, whatever the 'benign' intent may have been, Mahayana Buddhism is when Buddhism removed and replaced the Head on the religious Body of native religions - such as Taoism and Shinto - with Buddhism/Buddha/Bodhisattva as the Head instead. I.e. takeover and subversion. So in large parts it ends up looking like the native religion - because that part was specifically taken over/commandeered for further propagating Dhamma among the native religionists. But in fundamentals - at its Head - it remains a separate religion.)

In Theravada, Lokeśvara, "the lord, ruler or sovereign beholder of the world", name of a Buddha; probably a development of the idea of Brahmā, Vishnu or Śiva as lokanātha, "lord of worlds". In Indo-China especially it refers to Avalokiteśvara, whose image or face, in masculine form, is frequently seen, e.g., at Angkor. A Buddha under whom Amitābha, in a previous existence, entered into the ascetic life and made his forty-eight vows.

(Uh... I hope they're not referring to Angkor Wat, because Angkor Wat is a *Hindu* temple to *Hindu Gods* and never pretended to be anything else in its construction or the original worship taking place there among the erstwhile pre-Buddhist Cambodians.

If this is indeed the Temple being referred to, Hindu Temple's moortis are not of any Avalokiteshwara be it with or without a masculine face - unless it be a recently installed image they are talking about. I.e. one postdating the Temple's fundamentally Hindu origins/nature and postdating its preservation in the hands of a population that recognised and worshipped the Hindu Gods as Hindu Gods. If Buddhists worship at that Hindu Temple today, it's only because the since-then converted laity have been told to view the Hindu Gods of this Hindu Temple as a Boddhisattva and upholder of Bauddha Dharma instead. Cambodia's oldest Indian Temples are all Hindu. Some have been taken over by Buddhism in exactly the same manner upon the local laity's conversion, but the Temples' oldest layers remain Hindu.)

So there you have it. Tirunelveli is claimed as containing Pu/otalaka too. Soon Rajeev Srinivasan (and Devakumar Sreevijayan and Lokesh Chandra and whoever else) - and the clearly blind readership that become so easily convinced by their random theorising - will be declaring that the very Hindu Temples and very Hindu Gods of Tirunelveli too must have magically been of the Avalokiteshwara. (Whatever claims Buddhism makes in its texts "must be" true, right, especially if it can be fitted over the more ancient religio-geography of others who in reality were mostly quite disinterested/immune?)

No, Tirunelveli's Hindu temples and Hindu moortis/Hindu Gods are Hindu. (But such theories will be just the sort of thing that will appeal to modern Hindus' sensibilities and I am sure we'll hear them parroting it soon, if not evolving more fables on it. Note: Potalaka has often been like IE's Urheimat, in that it has made the followers of the MB type Dhamma eager to locate it everywhere. It is a quest. And been a quest for conquest in some cases.)

In Tibet, Shiva-and-Shakti were usurped for forming the Buddhist characters Avalokiteshwara and Tara. From there, in China, a very revered and ancient Taoist Goddess - whose worship is also *ancient* among the traditional Chinese - was usurped and rebranded as the Buddhist identity of the otherwise male Avalokiteshwara. The details of this subversion are very sad. (Note: the real Taoist Goddess has nothing to do with Buddhism.) In Kerala's case, we're now told we must believe that Ayyappa is supposedly "Avalokiteshwara", merely because of cheap claims made by various people based on the flimsiest types of 'evidence' - the kind that actually argues for itself in the other direction (as proving his fundamental and innate Hinduness).

Only people who hold their religion cheaply (but today's angelsk-speaking 'Hindus' are the cheapest people I know, I keep seeing examples of this and so have stopped counting) will believe all this. That's why they are able to write off their own ancestors' religion in a microsecond, simply because they don't really know it and can't be bothered knowing it. All in order to ignorantly propagate Buddhism's old techniques for converting heathens to Buddhism - using the heathens' attachments to their Gods.

Oh, yeah, forgot to mention that even the above article (religion.wikia.com/wiki/Avalokiteśvara) repeats other well-known Buddhist encroachment on Hindu Gods and their Own Names. The examples mentioned of other Hindu Gods' Names which have been absorbed for promoting Avalokiteshwara in India (or at least used for claiming sacred Hindu sites now) include:

- Tirupati. Literally shrIpati(=Husband/Lord of Lakshmi) and hence Sacred Lord - both are its literal meanings. One of the Tamizh names of Vishnu, hence also popular as the Own Name of the venkaTAchalapati - i.e. the Vishnu Lord of ShrI of the Seven Sacred Venkata Hills of AP.

- and even Hayagreeva (which is the horse-headed ViShNu well-known to Hindu scriptures and Hindu RuShis and traditional Hindu bhaktas. The one *known* for saving and upholding the Vedas).

Today's angelsk-speaking Hindus will soon declare that - just like they so 'cleverly' argued that Shaastaaram's name Shaastaa/teacher "proves" that Ayyappa the Hindu DharmaShaastaa "must have been" the Buddha - "in like manner" Hayagreeva and Tirupati "must be" Buddha too (why not? It's the same 'logic' right?) Merely because Buddhist texts (at times even from outside the concerned regions) have chosen to involve/use these names for promoting their religion. And let's just disregard established (and older) Hindu texts and what they have to say on the matter of who Gods like Hayagreevar really are.

On this tweet at rajeev2004.blogspot.com/2010/10/true-story-of-hindu-kings-destroying.html

Quote:RajeevSrinivasa and as for angkor wat, i have been there: the eight-armed vishu idol is being worshipped as the buddha by cambodians. no fuss, no issue.
Only Hindus think there's nothing self-delusional in the matter of former Hindu Cambodians (now converted to the Buddhist laity) who have been consciously changed/subverted to view Vishnu as a Buddha (or Boddhisattva).

Sure they may continue to pray there. But their view *remains* wrong: the moorti forever remains of Vishnu, who is the upholder of *Hindu* religion. They are viewing him wrongly. And this *matters*. Or should.

(Similar Buddhist takeover and subversion of the traditional viewing of native Gods has happened in some native E Asian Temples too.)

Here's a distinctly unpleasant parallel example as to why the mistake of identity is just *wrong* (regardless of whether the religion itself is objectionable at a fundamental level or not):


Quote:The much revered Black Virgins found in churches and monasteries in Spain and Italy are images of the Egyptian Goddess Isis and Her son Horus
These vigrahas of Isis and Horus were worshipped by the early converts to christianism as mary and jeebus, because the attachment had initially been to Isis and Horus. That is, the converts' ancestors were initially lay GrecoRomans attached to their local and locally-known Gods. Now worship to the same moortis persists among the converts. But their recognition of who the Gods of these moortis are is faulty. Their view is *wrong*.

And one more very indicative item at the same link on Avalokiteshwara, showing that this form of Mahayana Buddhism also tried to usurp and subvert the Hindu Brahman (why do you *think*):

Quote:Six forms of Avalokiteśvara in Mahayana (defined by Tian-tai, terrace): 1. great compassion, 2. great loving-kindness, 3. lion-courage, 4. universal light, 5. leader amongst gods and men, 6. the great omnipresent Brahman. Each of this bodhisattva's six qualities of pity, etc., breaks the hindrances respectively of the (6 realms) hells, pretas (hungry ghost), animals, asuras (demi god), men, and devas.
Funny how certain tendencies in historical Buddhism keep contradicting the fundamentals of Buddhism itself.

Alternatively the above may simply be a hangover from how ShivaShakti - as also the other Hindu Gods - in Tibet were viewed by the pre-Buddhist locals there (certainly the Hindus) as the para Brahman.*

But in any case, Buddhism's Bodhisattva/Buddha - Avalokiteshwara - is specifically not Brahman. Rather, it's either an appellation/view that stuck, or it is one that was usurped - in both cases it was done for the sake of converted laity and/or because of the strength of their prior Hindu views. Either way, it is just not Buddhist.

(*And likewise, the case of the nature of the Tao itself along with the Gods of traditional Taoism who were affected similarly by the same identity takeover. Both Taoism and Shinto have a ~similar concept to Hindus' Brahman.)

Buddhism's appropriation, and attempts at it, - including takeover of indigenous religions' Gods' identities and even moortis and temples (or vandalising the same) - is documented. Certainly not just in India.

And Ayyappa was originally - as he continues to be now - a Hindu God. Anyone who claims otherwise and who wants to be taken seriously, really should come up with actual proof. (I said proof, not speculation/theories/fables/fairy tales - unless people want their opinion to be dismissed and placed alongside the delirious neo unBuddhists of ambedkarites.org.) Hindus - including blog readership crowds - who care about their Gods=religion (more than mouthing the usual maxims to this effect) should at the very least demand as much from what they're reading before swallowing such nonsense.

Can defend Bauddha Dharma (when required) because its essences are worth defending, as a stand-alone tradition. But shouldn't lie about Hindu Dharma - or other indigenous religions of Asia - in order to make Buddhism (etc) look better. It doesn't. *Really* it doesn't. Making up fairy tales about Buddhism's history is only going to expose some uncomfortable truths come the time Hindus will at last find they will have to undo the damaging fictions of these fairy tales that they've been allowing to run wild (if not encouraging). Hindus should really nip this sort of thing in the bud.

To add to this bit that I wrote in post 105 above:

Quote:More importantly, several other, more ancient martial arts of E Asia are from Daoism - more ancient than the Hindu presence and subsequent contribution in E Asia. The origins of these ancient martial arts are even confirmed in the oral traditions concerning the Daoist Gods, and the (much smaller) collection of narratives on the Gods that got written down a lot later. These martial arts are generally Tai Chi based, rather like how various Hindu martial arts of India (as also Hindu religious dance forms such as Bharata Natyam) were derived from Hindu Dharmic religion's Yoga.
Other examples include how Shinto's Ninjas developed Ninjitsu - their martial arts and strategies - from their religion/Kamis.

Shinto also has Daoist Gods and sacred creatures in its pantheon since quite ancient times (along with the incorporation of a lot of Daoist influences, including Daoist Thought and Practices) - brought in from Daoism/China. <- Just to indicate that it wasn't only Hindu religion that was incorporated into pre-Buddhist Japan, but that in several parts of Asia - usually due to traditional Chinese presence - Taoism has always held a special place (even though in time, Taoism - similar to Hindu religion - ended up becoming another base that Buddhism learnt to spread on, which moved back over SE Asia too with this).

But don't want to give the wrong impression that Shinto is but some kind of mish-mash of Daoist and Hindu religion: there is a wealth of authentic native Japanese religion and religious-thought to Shinto, which is obviously the main part of the religion.
Hoping this can be my last post on that article by Rajeev Shrinivasan (the one where he, without any right or supporting facts, donates Ayyappa to Buddhism).


Quote:egalitarian Buddhist rule
Buddhism is supposed to be egalitarian? In what respect? Theory or practice? Because:

- In theory, Buddhism was not concerned with society, but with individual liberation (until much later on, after it had decided it needed to acquire a laity. And even then, any focus on egalitarianism was absent except for referring to occasional plattitudes, which are present in most pre-christian religions.)

- In practice, Buddhism has certainly not always been anywhere near "egalitarian".

The lack of egalitarianism in Buddhism is not a crime (it never aimed for it, it was concerned with something it regarded as deeper and more fundamental). But no need to pretend it was a feature in Buddhism when it wasn't.

Quote:The legend of Mahabali -- the asura king sent to the underworld by an avatar of Lord Vishnu -- also gives clues to the Hindu-Buddhist past: an egalitarian Buddhist rule overthrown by Brahmin-led Upanishadic Hindus.
(Let's just ignore the Hindu puranic accounts on the subject that say nothing of the kind and give no indication of Buddhism/Jainism/dravoodianism being involved.)

Again: nothing more than speculation. Of a very common kind, though *different* sets of people have followed this line of speculation to further their own different ideologies: Dravoodianists (i.e. those who believe they are the biblical Hamites) and some Jains claim the same.

The reason (neo)Buddhists, some Jains, and Dravoodianists all feel they can make this claim is because none of them are actually mentioned in the Trivikrama account and hence, elements from all 3 groups have decided to insert themselves into Hindu religious accounts (and thereby insinuate themselves into Hindu religio-history) by reading it as skewed allegory instead.

They will read as they please (i.e. as they are able). But Hindu Puranas and other sacred Hindu literature remain *Hindu* and only traditional Hindus know what they are really about.

Here's an alternative reading to the Puranic text on Vamana and Mahabali to the one Rajeev presented. Read it as given (i.e. as traditional Hindus know it), instead of being all communist and reading class and feudal vs egalitarian struggles into it. It is a religious text concerning the manifestation of the Hindu Gods of Hindus. *Not* some text on some pseudo-mytho-historical-allegory wherein the evil brahmoons evilly concealed their evil dealings with the fantastical "egalitarian Buddhist rule" under fable. Really, the text as-is - as is known to Hindus who remain the *sole* experts on it - merely concerns another chapter in the history of the Hindu Gods.

[While the puranic account of Trivikrama - as far as I am aware - knows no Buddhism (or Jainism or dravoodianism), in contrast, one may remark that there exist Buddhist narratives in E Asia concocted to explicitly insinuate Buddhism into Taoism in order to declare Buddhism to be Taoism's Head. Examples abound where Buddhism inserts Taoists Gods into its fictionalising and either subordinates them to Buddhist characters when the resistance to bauddhification of the same Gods is too great, or turns them into (an aspect of) Bodhisattva in order to lay claim on the laity of the indigenous religion. I recall other examples such as of a particularly benign and peaceful Shinto God being converted into a very ugra form of Bodhisattva. Of course, neither Shinto nor Taoist Gods have anything at all to do with Buddhism. They don't know the Buddha(s) or Nirvana either.

To state the regrettable turn of events in E Asia in similar fashion to Rajeev, then:

"Buddhist narratives in say Chinese territory *confirm* what happened in the Taoist-Buddhist past: the happy, contented and peaceful Taoist nature of Chinese lands were subverted and overthrown by Sangha-led Mahayana-Buddhist monks and their converts." And this is *demonstrable*. Not hypothesis. Not speculation. Not depending on allegorical readings of entirely non-Buddhist texts, but confirmed by documented historic facts of both victors and victims.

Or: "Records of Tibetan history *confirm* what happened in the Bon-Buddhist past: the Bon religion and its adherents were persecuted into extinction/conversion by Sangha-led Buddhist monks and their converts." This too is supported by evidence.

Is there anything that even needs to be said on the matter?]

Anyway, the point is that Tirugnyaanasambandar's case showed that Hindus of the past were not shy about pointing out that they at last trumped the religion (Jainism, in this case) that was oppressing Hindu society and trying to stifle the adherence to its Gods and rites. Surely if - as is claimed here - Mahabali was some Buddhist king and the "brahmin-led-upaniShadic-Hindus overthrew him" to re-establish (Hindu) Dharma, it can just have been recorded as such? Buddhists gloated in direct terms when they won.

Even the Hindu retrieval of the pockets of Afghanistan that at one time had visible Buddhist rule and famous centers of Buddhist monkhood, such as Gandhara (but where again the laity remained largely Hindu, as documented by Buddhists visiting the region) was not glazed over with mythic allegory by Hindu history writing. The Hindus were openly pleased with their successful attempts to revert the region to the ancestral Dharma (that of the Hindu religion). On that: Buddhism as it existed there - i.e. mainly the monkhood and Buddhist centers of learning which did not impact the Hindu laity of the region - already went into natural decline even before islam*. This decline too was also particularly commented on by E Asian Buddhists travelling there at the time. (Fortunately, dravoodianist logic doesn't work on Afghanistan: even as per AIT logic, Afghanistan was more 'oryan' than even modern interior North India is allowed to be.) Hindu rule in Gandhara that succeeded the temporary flowering of Buddhism in the region when the latter simply peetered out, had an easy time in consciously reverting the region to their ancestral Dharma: the laity having remained consistently Hindu as elsewhere in Indian territory, it was mainly the centers of power and learning that needed to be shifted from Buddhist to Hindu, just as some of them had earlier been shifted from Hindu religion to Buddhism. The fact is, Hindus never decided to just roll with Buddhism, nor did they consider their own Dharma the same or interchangeable with Bauddhas' Dharma. They felt the ancestral Dharma needed to be restored - as Hindus like Tirugnyaanasambandar felt in his time - and they went about it quite consciously.

(*In Afghanistan's case, it was mainly Hindus that suffered significant losses vis-a-vis islam: e.g. Islam took Gandhara from Hindu rule, besides a largely Hindu population.)

As stated, it was easy to revert Hindu lands from the outposts of Buddhism precisely because the laity were largely never Buddhist to begin with, but Hindu. (Buddhism started to bother to actively acquire laity quite late - laity was needed to sustain the generally celibate Buddhist monkhood and nuns - and when Buddhism finally seriously started aiming for getting laity, it was a development that wasn't as successful in India as it turned out to be in E and SE Asia. But this development is what forced them into coming up with Mahayana Buddhism as seen in the east.)

Buddhism in Indian territory (as also in Asian territory before the Buddhist appropriation of Taoist and Shinto Gods) barely made inroads into the laity belonging to their ancestral Hindu religion. This is confirmed for the South Indian cases also: it was the imported Buddhist monkhood and the additional monks they acquired (usually from the local brahmanas, sometimes kshatriyas - others were not generally interested in Buddhism, contrary to modern myth-making) that represented the "Buddhist presence" in South India. The laity - as also repeated by the Japanese scholar who hypothesised yet another Potalaka but in Tirunelveli (see one of the above posts) - remained Hindu as their ancestors had been, and quite immune to Buddhism and Jainism.

Efforts of Hindus (including, but not limited to, brahmanas) in restoring Hindu religion in Afghanistan were directed at restoring Hindu Dharma among the non-laity, including the rulership and where patronage was directed. In South India, the reversion efforts were moreover to free a Hindu population from the oppressive, specifically anti-Hindu, measures of ruling minority religions that at times were forcibly trying to install their religions among a Hindu people otherwise disinterested in Buddhism and Jainism. These things were not quite "egalitarian" in their experience. Tibet's indigenous religion Bon certainly did not experience the famous "egalitarian" Buddhism 'known' exclusively to the imagination of arm-chair ponderers of this age.

If people want to find an egalitarian religion - one that quite reasonably deserves the descriptive - I can think of no better candidate than NA Native American religion.

There is certainly no *Indian* religion that fully deserves the term. But Hindu religion is not as un-egalitarian as others always insinuate, nor does it even compare unfavourably (in practice or the existence of theoretical plattitudes) to other Indic/Dharmic traditions.
Husky: If you have a blog, you should post your rebuttal there too.
I don't blog. But if you're interested and if you have a gmail account or a blog yourself, you can log on to the Rajeev2004 blog and comment with a summary of what's wrong in his/et al's theory. And I guess the same would be required at Shantanu's blog - as I recall, its owner threatened to peddle the speculation further in his own space. Among all his fans and their friends too.

Yupp -


Quote:B Shantanu said...

Thanks Rajeev - in particular for the link to your article re Sabarimala and Tobet. Fascinating!

I have added excerpts to my post.
<<<"Furthermore, the very sitting posture of the Ayyappan deity is suggestive: almost every Buddhist image anywhere, including those sometimes unearthed in the fields of Travancore by farmers, is in sitting position. Whereas practically no other deity in Kerala is in that posture." The argument is absurd.>>>

Of course this argument is absurd. If sitting posture is any indicator, what should spring in one's memory is the image of famous sindhu valley seal pre-dating any bauddha imagery by several centuries:

[Image: yogiseal.jpg]

Another version of the SV image should come to mind where the deity is surrounded by vyAghra and other creatures, to compare it with the popular imagery of ayyappa with several vyAdhra-s around him.

And if his association with the slaying of mahiShI is considered, this SV one becomes even more interesting:

[Image: Pashupati-sacrifice.jpg]

More Pashupati proximity rather than Buddha!

By the way don't we know that even the pashupati shrine was taken over by bauddhas and then reclaimed by the pAshupata-s -- evidence of both occurances abound at that shrine itself.
It is indeed fascinating. Fascinating because it is from Rajeev. I thought he was one of those frothing Hindus, who see ghosts in every shadow.
[quote name='Swamy G' date='11 November 2010 - 09:36 PM' timestamp='1289491081' post='109193']

It is indeed fascinating. Fascinating because it is from Rajeev. I thought he was one of those frothing Hindus, who see ghosts in every shadow.


I'm not sure why such a response is necessary - the dismissal of RS' entire character, I mean. Such as with the unreasonable statement that he supposedly is "one of those frothing Hindus, who see[s] ghosts in every shadow."

Rajeev Srinivasan was wrong on the matter which I spammed about in some successive posts above (dangerously wrong, but I don't think he is aware of how certain motivated others are using the same false, unfounded argumentation against Hindus). Okay, so it wasn't the first time he was wrong either*, but as I just implied, this instance was on a matter important to affected Hindus (like the Tamizh kind) and so some sort of correction was required for the record.

That is no occasion to insinuate that his entire character is one of paranoia and to publicly set him down.

I'd just had enough with core Hindu matters (like Hindu Gods, Temples, rituals and practices) - not to mention even non-Indian religions - being donated away to Buddhism etc. by people today who apparently can't care less about such things. Hence those posts. I may have mentioned RS' name in the above posts far more often than a lot of other persons/orgs propagating the same falsehood - in their case, knowingly - who deserved at least as much mention. But unlike them, I had *expected* more of Hindus.

But he has written knowingly on other matters and has been helpful in opening many angelsk-reading Hindus' eyes to christianism and its terrorism. That's a lot more than many Indians manage (usually one only witnesses christian protectionism). And that does not make him "a frothing Hindu who sees ghosts in every shadow" for it. Any ghostly shadows of christoism - are very real.

Came here to write on a different matter - on something that has been bothering me for some weeks: a symptom of the misfortunes suffered by Daoism (hardly a minor matter to Daoists), but I guess that will wait.

* Example of another erroneous post by RS that is relevant to this thread. (Or maybe it's just the language medium/sentence structure used that looks to me to imply an equivalence where none was intended). Tracked it down, it's this one:


Quote:quite interestingly, these sentient-being fantasies only afflict the semitic ideologies. hinduism and buddhism talk of non-anthropomorphic forces, the former of 'it' and the latter of 'the void'. no problem if 'intelligent design' and suchlike are shown to be so much poppycock.

1. 'Gods' in Buddhism - where Buddhism references them at all - is a different matter entirely to what Gods are/mean in the traditional Gods-centred religions. But I think that's been sufficiently touched on in this thread.

2. Isn't anthropomorphism the human tendency to see/ascribe human features and other humanisms - like emotions and motivations - to non-human matters like animals, forces of nature, etc.?

While it's true that anthropomorphism is not there in Hindu religion, what doesn't seem to be stressed in the above is that the Hindu Gods (when with form) most certainly have their Own Forms, which are natural to them (i.e. not human-assigned, just like animals' forms are not human-assigned) and which forms are in fact *central* in the modes of worship prescribed for many of the Gods. There are (at least) *several* Gods for whom the forms are a most primary way to reach them. And to deny that is to the deny the very Hindu Gods concerned in such worship.

Again: these things matter.

3. The 2nd half of the statement by RS that "hinduism and buddhism talk of non-anthropomorphic forces, the former of 'it' and the latter of 'the void'" seems to imply - and I could just be misreading, it's not clear - that Buddhist and Hindu religions are talking of the same thing: that the Void is Buddhism's way of regarding Hindu's Absolute Reality (Supreme Ultimate) or vice-versa. But they're Not the same.

This time, I'm going to quote heathens *other* than Hindus on the matter. I thought the following item from Hellenism's Neo-Platonist Philosophy seemed relevant in this respect:

[Image: NP-1.jpg]

Although Proclus above - and he wasn't the only one - didn't write that with Buddhism in mind, the above nevertheless gives hints of even the Neoplatonist Hellenistic views with respect to Buddhistic-type ideas (Buddhism wasn't the only one that came up with Nothingness as the final reality, the ancient world was quite familiar with the notion, and the above sort of Hellenistic arguments against such actually derive from their general experience).

Daoists explain clearly the danger inherent in people wrongly assuming that Nothingness - when reached as a conclusion of sorts during Daoist "philosophical" pursuit - is the final end. Because in Daoism, where their Gods are known to be real, Daoism's Supreme Ultimate is the Reality, not nothingness. (And this view was not derived as an answer to Buddhism - though it can be applied as a response - but is an earlier observation in Daoism, one that is internal to it and, again, derived from Daoist experiences.)

Buddhism would claim the opposite (seen at its most obvious in western dabblers in Buddhism...I mean converts...who make this claim after they mis-use Advaitam* - which doesn't even involve or concern Buddhism but is exclusively Hindu - as a stepping stone in their practice of Zen and other Buddhisms): that they have gone "beyond" the experience of the Absolute Reality to reach the Nothing and realise this as the 'true/real' 'reality'.

Traditional Buddhists are entitled to their views. But Buddhism's Void is not the same as the end-goals of the various Gods-focused religions: none of them claim such sameness.

* You can see many western converts to Buddhism misusing Advaitam in this manner: so many of them energetically go after translations of traditional Hindu books on Advaitam and then declare it "helps them with their Buddhism". (There's the unspoken one-way rule that everything Hindu is "therefore" magically Buddhist as well. For once: just learn to say No.)

Anyway, their confession that "it helps them with their Buddhism" indicates one of two things:

- either Buddhism really is incomplete, even in the area of what people mislabel "philosophy": if Buddhists are unable to get the feeling they have got further/anywhere without resorting to *Hindu* teachings on what are very much *Hindu* knowledge and views/understanding,

- or it is that western converts just don't get Buddhism. Yet they *will* dabble and misuse even Hindu religion for it.

Whichever, the gall of it is that they then write sermons on how they have (a) "moved/evolved past" the experience of the All/Reality of Hindu religion - usually with ref to Advaitam, since that is what they tend to dabble in, to (b ) realising the "truth" of Buddhism by having "experienced the Nothingness Beyond It All" - before advertising as usual that "Buddhism is therefore real/true/superior/the final step/seal of prophets" to Hindu religion. When in reality they only imagine having experienced both (certainly, they only imagine having experienced the first-mentioned, (a)).
The Ultimate can be define in 2 sentences:

Ultimate is everything that exist.

Ultimate is nothing of that exist.

This definition is universal in philosophy.

In buddhism ,the nothingness is not defined as nothing or inexistence, but beyond existence and non-existence.

In other words is indescribable ,defined only in paradoxical sentences.
Another HP article on Buddhism: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/katherine-...14969.html
[quote name='Husky' date='24 January 2011 - 03:30 AM' timestamp='1295857324' post='110367']

I'm not sure why such a response is necessary - the dismissal of RS' entire character, I mean. Such as with the unreasonable statement that he supposedly is "one of those frothing Hindus, who see[s] ghosts in every shadow."


LoL. Now that is funny from you, you who has mastered the art of character assassination. Just because I think RS is right on certain matters or issues does not alter my opinion on his nature of writing. Enuf said.
This post has been a long time coming. The matter to be touched on has been bothering me no end. But even after foreshadowing it earlier, remained torn between whether to bring up this very important matter because it is important, or simply leave it unmentioned because I don't know if it's the sort of thing others give a toss about. But I've decided that it *does* belong here, because it affects a bunch of *actual* heathens that matter (to me): Daoists.

1. Back in 29 December 2008, I put up what wacky said about the Daoist God Nezha in a post:

Quote:What wacky currently says about this God:


Quote:Nezha (deity)

Nezha or Na Zha (Chinese: 哪吒; pinyin: N zhā; Japanese: Nataku or Nata) is a deity, the enfant terrible trickster, originally of Chinese mythology, though in the West he is perhaps more well known from Japanese anime. His official Taoist deity name is Zhongtan Yuanshuai (中壇元帥) or Nezha Qiansui (哪吒千歲).


Nezha is often depicted flying in the sky with a wheel of fire under each foot, a golden hoop, the "cosmic ring", around his shoulder and a spear in his hands. Sometimes he is given multiple arms. Nezha is usually depicted as a youth and rarely as an adult.

As the third son of a military commander called Li Jing, a military leader in Chentangguan Fortress, his birth was peculiar. When his mother Lady Yin got pregnant, she waited for three years and six months to deliver the boy, but unfortunately a ball of flesh was born. His father got so angry that he split it with a sword, which caused Nezha to jump out and grow fully, even though his mind and temperament were that of a child.

After he killed Li Gen, a yaksha, and Ao Bing, the third son of East Sea Dragon King Ao Guang, Nezha flayed and disemboweled himself in order to save his parents that were taken hostage by Ao Guang, but was brought back to life by his master, Taiyi Zhenren, a Taoist immortal sage who used lotus blossoms to reconstruct a body for his soul to inhabit.[1]

Nezha's two elder brothers are also powerful warriors. The eldest is Jinzha (金吒), who is a disciple of Manjusri Bodhisattva, and the second eldest is Muzha (木吒), a disciple of Samantabhadra Bodhisattva.

Some traced his origins to the Vedic god Nalakuvara, and legend goes that he was born in the Shang dynasty

A photo of what's apparently a Nezha vigraham from someone's puja room:


Quote:Appearance in ancient Chinese mythology and literature

Nezha has frequently appeared in Chinese Mythology and ancient Chinese Literature such as the Fengshen Yanyi (or Investiture of the Gods), although the story of Nezha conquering the sea is the most famous among Chinese households. In Journey to the West, Nezha was a general under the leadership of his father Li Jing. He entered into combat against Sun Wukong when the latter rebelled against the Jade Emperor, ruler of Heaven, but Nezha was beaten by Sun Wukong and had to retreat.

I think "Journey to the West" is the story of the Monkey King travelling west to India (Buddhism-related). IIRC, Sun Wukong is the Monkey King about whom there are Chinese animations as well (such as "Uproar in Heaven" and entire animated series).

2. Now, the same page at wikipedia on Nezha starts with:

Quote:Nezha (deity)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Jump to: navigation, search

Nezha (on the left) in Fengshen Yanyi

Nezha, Na Zha or Nataku (Chinese: 哪吒; pinyin: Nézhā or Núozhā[1]; is a Taoist protection deity, the trickster, originally of Chinese Buddhist mythology. His official Taoist name is "Marshal of the Central Altar" (中壇元帥). He was then given the title "Third Lotus Prince" (莲花三太子) after he became a deity.

Note the following changes to the wiki page between the excerpts in 1 and 2:

- the original page only stated the plain fact that Nezha is a Daoist God

- the current page suddenly claims he was "originally" of Chinese Buddhist mythology

- and curiously, the page no longer admits to the full Buddhist claim: that the Buddhists always said Nezha was derived from a *Vedic* God. Instead the wacky page now claims that he has "Chinese Buddhist mythological" origins. I.e. specifically not Indian - which is what would have happened if they had claimed "Vedic". But "Chinese Buddhist" implies that he is specifically not indigenous to China (i.e. not an ancient Chinese character, meaning not Daoist), but is instead to be imagined as a Buddhist invention (mythology) in Chinese territory.

In short, they are implying Daoism stole a character from Chinese Buddhist mythology and made him into a Daoist God. When in reality, he is but yet another indigenous God whom Chinese Buddhist mythology wove into Buddhism's little inventions to convert the indigenous Chinese religionists (i.e. the Daoists).

The Chinese Buddhist argument for Nezha's "Buddhist" origins consistently trace their claim to Nezha being a Vedic God. But even if (note the if) he had been originally based on a Vedic God, that would still make his origins specifically NOT Buddhist, but Hindu. (How dare I differentiate.)

(BTW, Vedic God doesn't at all automatically imply that it would therefore be Buddhism that introduced him into China. It could at least just as well imply the pre-Buddhist Hindu presence in China. After all, the Vedic Gods familiar to the Siberians after the pre-Buddhist Hindu influence there were hijacked by Buddhism when converting Siberians to Buddhism.)

But one notes that the current state of wikipedia has erased even the Chinese Buddhist version of events of Nezha being originally a "Vedic God", which actually formed the basis of their argument, yet now states only the remaining part of the Buddhist claim: that Nezha has "Buddhist origins" - in specific, that his character had Chinese Buddhist mythological origins (Buddhism doesn't like to admit to the existence of Gods) - even as the wiki page acknowledges that he is in fact a Daoist God.

3. On 23 February 2009 I already explained:


Consider the Chinese Buddhist narrative of "The Monkey King". It is about a Chinese Buddhist (the 'monkey') who IIRC even challenged the Jade (?) Emperor Of Heaven - someone quite central to traditional Chinese Religio, Taoism. Now, it's not at all a Taoist motif to have anyone challenge the Emperor of Heaven. This part of the narrative represents a Buddhist challenge to Taoism's authority. This antagonism with the existing status quo is subsequently echoed by how the narrative has the Monkey King fight the champion representing Heaven: Nezha - an ancient Taoist child God, who is particularly known for his eternal invincibility in battle. And what happens in the encounter (an encounter that is not there in Taoism, btw, since this is entirely a Buddhist narrative)? The Buddhist narrative has the Monkey King best Nezha! Impossible, but it symbolises something: Buddhism's claim to supremacy over Taoist Gods, over Taoism.

Of course, the truth is - and the proof is always easy for the indigenous Chinese heathens themselves: the traditional Daoists still see their Gods. So when they say that they know their Nezha is a *Daoist* God (and not anything Buddhist), for the onlooker it comes down to the question of who Hindus think are more likely to be speaking the truth on the matter:

a. Buddhism - famous for hijacking other people's Gods and turning them into Bodhisattvas to peddle Buddhism. (And, other than in Chinese-influenced countries, where else do you know Nezha from?);

b. Daoism - which *has* indigenous Gods, wherein Nezha fits inside the Daoist universe of the Dao, the Yin-Yang the Tai Ji, the well-known Chinese Trimoorti, the Jade Emperor, their famous Goddesses Triples, the many other indigenous Chinese Gods of their Pantheon.

c. Daoist traditions on Nezha predate the Daoist written work Nezha Nao Hai (or so I think it was called), whose dating is somewhat undetermined 'hence' dismissed as being "late" especially in contrast with the Buddhist work on Nezha, so Buddhists claim it is younger than the Chinese Buddhist work "Journey to the West" which insinuates not only Nezha but also the Jade Emperor of Daoist heaven into their Buddhist narrative. Then, the Daoist work Nezha Nao Hai (NNH) is dismissed by Buddhists as being written by "someone who doesn't seem to know Daoism well (therefore it may not be accurate)". But Buddhists cannot be the judge of how accurate to Daoism that work is, and the experts in the matter - Daoists themselves - do think it is Daoist indeed. (It is traditional Chinese religion, which falls under the native Chinese religion that has been called "Dao-ism" since the religion and its Gods are intimately associated with the Dao. And NNH is a religious text in the traditional Chinese religion, i.e. in "Daoism").

Moreover, the Buddhist novel "Journey to the West" already admits that:

- Nezha is the champion of Daoist Heaven, fighting on the Jade Emperor's behalf. (The Jade Emperor is himself well-known as a Daoist God. And as Daoists say: Daoists worship him, Buddhism doesn't - since it wasn't easy to hijack him for Buddhism as he is one of the upholders of Daoism.) This means that Nezha represented Daoism in the Buddhist work.

- Since, as per the Buddhist Journey of the West itself, Nezha is the champion of the hosts of Daoist Heaven who was appointed to fight Sun Wukong (the Buddhist "Monkey King") who had come to challenge the King of Daoist Heaven - the Jade Emperor himself - this implies an admission in the very Buddhist text that alludes to Nezha that Nezha is a Daoist God. Sun Wukong is the Buddhist hero while his opponent is from the ranks of *Daoist* Heaven.

4. Hmmm, this is unexpected. Last time I had saved the following wacky page, it still contained the material I wanted to paste. But this next change to wacky - coming as it does in the wake of the above-mentioned change on Nezha - is surprising.

Anyway, in a recent month, the wacky page on Guanyin (Goddess of Mercy, the female Chinese Goddess equated with the Buddhist Avalokiteshwara) still alluded to Buddhism's usual pattern of action in the heathen east. Though in highly understated words.

See how my lips are not moving:

The wackypedia page en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guanyin stated, in that very recent past (October 2010) -



Guanyin is the bodhisattva associated with compassion as venerated by East Asian Buddhists, usually as a female. [...] Commonly known in English as the Goddess of Mercy[3], Guanyin is also revered by Chinese Taoists (sometimes called Daoists) as an Immortal. However, in Taoist mythology, Guanyin has other origination stories which are not directly related to Avalokiteśvara.



Guanyin's origin is debated among scholars. The root of this debate lies in the history of religion in China. [color="#FF0000"]China's indigenous religion is Taoism.[/color] It is possible that Guanshi'yin originated as a Taoist deity, the Queen Mother of the West. With the introduction of Mahayana Buddhism to China in around the 4th to 5th centuries, Taoism and Buddhism became religious rivals in China. The Buddhist tactic was to change, and even supplant, indigenous Taoist deities in favor of Buddhist deities. Over the centuries, this trend has had the effect that it is now virtually impossible to determine Guanshi'yin's true origin. The official Buddhist view is that Guanyin originated with the male Avalokiteśvara, though Guanyin's origin may be more complex than this simple, linear derivation. While it is certain that the name "Guanshi'yin" is derived from the name "Avalokiteśvara", the image of the Chinese/Korean/Japanese/Vietnamese Bodhisattva (along with her femininity) may be at least partly derived from other sources.
And in keeping with the official Buddhist view again, one no longer sees the above paragraph in Wikipedia's page on Guanyin. I am sure you can still find it on the page's Edit History.

"Curious" isn't it, how both the Nezha page and Guanyin page have changed to sideline the indigenous view of the indigenous Gods who have been hijacked by Buddhism to instead proclaim that they were Buddhist in origin and that *Daoism* stole them from Buddhism. An entire inversion.

The cruelty never ceases.

But the above rather mildly-expressed para - now missing from Wacky's main page on Guanyin - can still be found at various places (search the web for it) including

http://guan-yin.co.tv/ - which seems a copy of Wacky's Guanyin page as at some older date.

"Who do you think is telling the truth?" Only one of the versions is the truth - and it is NOT the Buddhist version. (The initial conconction and then constant opportunistic re-invention of Avalokiteshwara can be traced not just in the Indian subcontinent but in the rest of Bauddhafied Asia. The bodhisattva/multiple Buddha characters of Mahayana always came in handy in hijacking other Gods for Buddhism.) As the purging of inconvenient facts in wackypedia show, "clearly, it must have been the Daoists' fault". Those eeevil Hindoos. Sorry, eeevil Daoists.

The Daoist Mother Goddesses were extremely popular among the indigenous laity of China and Taiwan to Japan and Korea to Southeast Asia (i.e. everywhere where Daoism travelled and had colonies). In Daoism, besides being worshipped for being one of their beloved Mother Goddesses, the one being referred to as "Goddess of Mercy" had for instance since ancient times been the go-to for childless couples as well as those concerned for their babies' welfare.

Yet there will be the usual Buddhism fans - of Hindu origin of course, famous for lecturing Hindus on Buddhism's superiority and automatic right to everything Hindu (since "we're all one religion onlee, else you don't exist" threat) - who will spout that Buddhism is a great (if not The Very Best) thing that happened to the rest of what's now Bauddhafied Asia.

When it's not at all. In fact: those people would have been better served if the Indian subcontinent that had originated Buddhism had kept Buddhism confined to itself, instead of missionising it on other native peoples who have their own religions (in the case of Daoism and aspects of Shinto, these are quite the local indigenous equivalents of the traditional Hindu religion as the old Hindoos knew it).


[quote name='Swamy G' date='01 February 2011 - 07:12 AM' timestamp='1296524043' post='110499']you who has mastered the art of <...>[/quote]If true, can chalk it up to "Anything you can do I can do better, I can do anything better than you" - as the old song goes.

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