The 8th International Conference Buddhism & Australia
Chinese Buddhist Encyclopedia Illustrations
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"Werma (ཝེར་མ་) is a Tibetan term for a kind of spirit and spirit principle. A werma is an enlightened form of drala. This term is used mostly in the context of the Shambhala terma teachings and practices that relate to those such as the Werma Sadhana....The Werma Sadhana is a sadhana meditation practice unique to the Shambhala lineage. It is based upon a Shambhala terma received by Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche at Casa Werma in Mexico in 1980......Prior to 2005, students in Shambhala received this sadhana practice at a Kalapa Assembly retreat. Begnning in 2005, students receive this practice by attending a Rigden abhisheka after attending Vajrayana Seminary or the equivalent and then by completing an amount of Primordial Rigden ngöndro....
(Jamgon Mipham Namgyal Gyatso).(1846-1912)..The Tibetan text: "The Lamp that Illuminates the Practice of the Miraculous Juthig of Existence" : interesting and clear descriptions of the DRALA and WERMA can be found in two passages from the monumental work on the Juthig divination. The first passage describes the 'Unicorn' Drala Seu Ruchig, one of the most important manifestations among Drala and Werma Also information on Lha, Nyen, and Lu."
WERMA......."From the inner essence of the egg a miraculous man was born with a lion's head and lynx's ears, a fierce face with an elephant's trunk, the mouth of a chusin, and tiger's fangs. His feet were swords and his wings sabres, and between the flaming horns (rwa dbal) on the great Khyung's head he had the diadem of the wish-fulfilling jewell as an ornament. He was called 'heroic' WERMA NYINYA and was the fount of four distince ritual traditions. In fact from the union of the Werma with the Lha were born the 'Werma of the Lha that Subjugate the Dud'.......from the union with the Nyen, the 'Werma of the Nyen that Subjugate Enemies'......from the union with the Khyung, the 'Werma of the Khyung that Subjugate the Lu'....from the unioon with the divine Lions (seng) the 'Three Werma Brothers that Subjugate Heroes'.....From these four divine manifestations, which in turn emanated armed hordes of nine hundred and ninety thousand various Werma, originated the four systems of ritual practice devoted to the class of the Werma that, as is written in the Zijid, "all arose from the Lha, descended from the Se and are similar to the Wal.....and appeared in order to subjugate all hostile entities causing obstacles and disturbances."(Drung, Deu and Bon, 1995)
WERMA THANGKA.......There is a thangka of the Warrior God .....Werma Nyi-nya..... in the Musec Guimet in Paris.....however this depiction does not have the elephant trunk.......horns of a garuda, lion's head, lynx ears, fearful face, crocodile mouth, tiger's teeth, feet and wings in the form of swords.....
"Werma Nyinya: a worldly deity arising from the Bon 'Treasure Tradition' and specifically the Chang Sen Tagdu text unearthed by Terton Ponse Khyung Gotsal (12th century). Dynamic in appearance with one face and two hands, white in colour, he has the head of a lion - snarling and gaping. The right hand holds aloft a sword ready to strike and the left stretched to the side a trident on a long shaft. Wearing a flower and jewel crown the head is topped with a green bird. Adorned with a necklace, bracelets and anklets, a pink and green scarf is worn around the shoulders and the lower body is draped in a tiger skin skirt. Sharp blue wings extend from the back as he stands in a wrathful posture atop a raging tiger above two red figures, a sun disc and multi-coloured lotus seat. Six attendants in similar appearance stand at the right and left. (Textually there are 13 retinue figures).
At the top center is a garuda bird along with the four animals of the directions at the four corners; snow lion, dragon, tiger and white yak. At the top right and left are two seated figures, peaceful in appearance, each with one face and two hands, white in colour. At the lower left a standing man holds an arrow and on the right a blacksmith hammers over an anvil. A solitary bird clutches a bat with the beak and a monkey wields an axe.
Drung Deu and Bon: Narrations, Symbolic Languages and The Bon Tradition In Ancient Tibet... Chapter IV-The Bon of the Deities: The Protection Rites i. The importance of the deities of protection...Page 51 ii. The powerful Thugkar deities...Page 51 iii. The heroic Drala and Werma hordes...Page 54 iv. The Changseng and the Shungon...Page 56 v. The Drala Seu Ruchig and the manifestations of the Werma...Page 56 vi. The meaning of drala
"The werma deities are extremely important because they are the special protectors who always accompany and protect the masters and practitioners. From an ancient ritual text called...The General Do of Existence....
To the masters the Werma are important. The Werma whirl like snow-storms, those they escort are the practitioners, those they assist are the practitioners, those they protect are the practitioners. We proffer the well-prepared offerings and confess errors if we have mingled with evil!" (Drung, Deu and Bon....1995..... page 55)
"The Tibetans have very complicated linkages and overlappings among the protector gods of the person, the protectors gods of lineages (male, female, maternal uncle) and the different masters of the place or territory." (Blondeau: 1996..pg ix)...
"It is difficult to relate to enlightened energies if they have no form or ground for personal communications. One should remember that the mind that perceives the deity and the deity itself are not separate."....(Sogyal: 1992...pg 285)...
WERMA...Published references to the Tibetan term Werma....."Werma: martial spirits...infuse the warrior with dignity and confidence." (Nalanda:Lopez:1997) "the 360 Werma, a Zhang-zhung term" (Hoffman:1975). "There are four different classes of divine manifestations: Drala, Werma, Changseng, and Shungon." (Norbu:1995) "Werma defined as 'furious ones'. (Ekvall:pg 78) "The 360 Werma deities who dwell on Mt Kailash in western Tibet." (Powers:1995) "The origin of the powerful Werma. A clear description of drala and werma." (Norbu 1995: pps 54-56)...."God Werma...Fury Werma...Khyung Werma...Werma Hero Subduers"...(Snellgrove:1967...pg 63)...."the werma is an important class of Bon deities. The werma are the angry, ferocious and fearless ones, the dgra lha of the arrows and lances. Two main groups of werma, one of 180 and the other of 360 members." (Nebesky:1956..pg 334)...."Nyi Nya is the lord of the Werma" (Norbu: 1995..pg 245)....the Shang Shung term for king is WER RO (Tibetan: rgyal po) (Kvaerne: 1996)....senkhar (gsas mkhar): a small temple to attract the werma deities..."the Werma, almighty and fearless, are the 'road gods' (lam lha) of many warriors." (Nebesky: 1956..pg 334)...
ZHIDAG....."Tibetan Buddhists believe that there are countless types of beings other than humans and animals. Some are more powerful, happier, and more intelligent than humans, and others less so. Usually if there is no common karma or karmic connection, beings of different types will not encounter each other. Spirits are not necessarily births of the ancestors from a particular locality, but may have come from any kind of birth or realm." (Hidden Teachings of Tibet)
FRAVASHIS......"A class of higher intelligence that are ancient Persian guardian warrior spirits. The 19th day of every month is consecrated to them. King Phraortes' (647 BC) Persian name is derived from the term."(Dhalla:1963..pg 235)..... "Hence Finite Time and Finite Space control man's destiny from the cradle to the grave. Yet the whole of the macrocosm is kept in being by the Fravashis (Dralas ??), the spiritual powers that are indissolubly linked with each human being and with humanity as a whole. Finite time-space, then, is not a kenoma, an empty nothingness, but a pleroma, a 'full' and vital organism...."...(Zaehner..1961..pg 150)...
"We are working with iconography as a journey, rather than as entertainment or excitement or cultural fascination. We are talking about personal experience, how we actually see this world. There is a basic iconographic pattern in the universe, like the existence of the seasons and the elements, but how we react to that is individual.""....(Trungpa: Dharma Art.:1996...pg 94)
" Mount Kailash is referred to as the "center of the universe" and is considered to be the resting place of Gods. Tibet's Mount Kailash is a sacred place to four religions: Buddhism, Jainism, Hinduism, Bon Po (a native Tibetan religion prior to Buddhism), and Ayyavazhi religions. According to Hindu tradition, Kailash is the home of the deity Shiva. Some sects hold that Kailash is paradise and the final destination of all souls in the world.In Hindu religion, Mount Kailash also plays an important role in Rama's journey in the ancient Sanskrit epic, Ramayana. Buddhists hold that Kailash is the home of Samvara, a guardian deity, and a representation of Buddha. Buddhists believe that Mount Kailash has supernatural powers that are able to clean the sins of a lifetime of any person. Followers of Jainism believe that Kailash is the site where the founder of Jainism reached enlightenment. Bon Po teaches that Kailash is the home of a wind goddess....(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sacred_mountains)
"In Bon, the pre-Buddhist religion of Tibet, Kailash is a giant protector deity that holds the soul of the nation, ensuring its continuance. As the place where Shanrab, the mythical founder of Bon descended from heaven, it was the centre of the ancient Bon empire, Zhang Zhung.Buddhist cosmology views Kailash as the manifestation of Mount Meru, ‘navel of the world’, the exact centre of the universe. A powerful image is that of Kailash as ‘world pillar’ around which the entire created world revolves. ..Mount Of Myths by Swati Chopra