The 8th International Conference Buddhism & Australia
Chinese Buddhist Encyclopedia Illustrations
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The Samye monastery or Samye Gompa (Tibetan: བསམ་ཡས་, Wylie: bsam yas, ZYPY: Samyä; Chinese:桑耶寺) is the first Buddhist Monastery built In Tibet, was most probably first constructed between 775 and 779 CE under the patronage of King Trisong Detsen(The Name means ‘inconceivable’) of Tibet who sought to revitalize Buddhism, which had declined since its introduction by King Songtsän Gampo in the 7th century.
However, the building would always collapse after reaching a certain stage.
According to The Fifth Dalai Lama (Pearlman, 2002: p.18), Padmasambhava performed the Vajrakilaya Dance and enacted the rite of 'thread cross' or Namkha to assist King Trisong Deutsen and Shantarakshita clear away obscurations and hindrances in the building of Samye: [[File:Guru Rinpoche - Padmasambhava statue.jpg|thumb|left|200px|Guru Padmasambhava)]
"The great religious master Padmasambhava performed this dance in Order to prepare the ground for the Samye monastery and to pacify the malice of the Lha local mountain god, spirits) and srin malevolent Spirits in Order to create the most perfect conditions."
The dance was memorialized by the construction of Vajrakilaya Stupas - monuments honoring the Ritual kilya (purba) daggers - at the cardinal points of the Monastery, where they would prevent demonic forces from entering the sacred grounds.
Pearlman (2002: p.94) succinctly charts the origin of the institution of the Nechung Oracle:
- When Padmasambhava consecrated Samye monastery with the Vajrakilaya dance, he tamed the local Spirit protector, Pehar Gyalpo, and bound him by oath to become the head of the entire hierarchy of Buddhist protective Spirits.
The original buildings have long disappeared.
They have been badly damaged several Times - by civil War in the 11th century, fires in the mid 17th century and in 1826, an earthquake in 1816, and in the 20th century, particularly during the Cultural Revolution, but as late as the late 1980s pigs and other farm Animals were allowed to wander through the sacred buildings.
- As is well known, the Fate of Chan East Mountain Teachings In Tibet was said to have been decided in a debate at the Samye monastery near Lhasa in c.792-797.
- Mo-ho-yen's teaching In Tibet as the famed proponent of the all-at-once gate can be summarized as "gazing-at-Mind" (Chinese: k'an-hsin... = Tibetan: sems La bltas)
and "no examining" (Chinese: pu-kuan... = Tibetan: myi rtog pa) or "no-Thought no-examining" (Chinese: pu-ssu pu-kuan... = Tibetan: myi bsam myi rtog). "Gazing-at-Mind" is an original Northern (or East Mountain Dharma Gate) teaching.