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 Other Systems and Alternate Approaches
 Buddha as an aspect of Shiva
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102 Posts

Posted - Dec 11 2018 :  10:47:29 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Message
In this video: Sadhguru claims that Buddha explored just an aspect of Shiva's teachings. Supposedly Shiva explored 112 ways of getting enlightened and Buddha just the awareness path.

I'm surprised by this. Can anyone comment and/or point to sources (shiva's sutras?).


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Posted - Dec 12 2018 :  02:40:44 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Moderator note: Topic moved for better placement
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Posted - Dec 12 2018 :  10:12:35 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
What he says, makes sense. The 112 ways are based on the Vigyan Bairav. Read lesson 136 here at AYP, where it is covered briefly.
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Posted - Dec 13 2018 :  08:04:18 AM  Show Profile  Visit Christi's Homepage  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Hi Microcosm,

As Jusmail says, the 112 techniques that Sadhguru is referring to come from the Vijnana Bhairava Tantra which is a popular text in the Trika school of Kashmir Shaivism. The text is part of a larger text and is written as if it is a discussion between Bhairava and his consort Bhairavi. It was probably composed around the 9th century AD, around 1,400 years after the Buddha was born.

Some of the things that Sadhguru says in the video are misleading. Many of the techniques described in the Vijnana Bhairava Tantra are techniques designed to increase awareness. These include increasing awareness of the breath, of the body, of the senses and the objects of the senses, awareness of the mind and of non-dual reality and so on. The Buddha also taught various techniques for increasing awareness, amongst other things that he taught. So, the two paths are similar in that respect. It is not the case that there is only one teaching on awareness in the Vijnana Bhairava Tantra.

Both the Buddhist path and the yogic path include milestones to help people recognise where they are and how far they have come on the way. So again, they are very similar there. And again, both the Buddhist path and the yogic path talk in terms of lifetimes of practice.

It is true that at a certain stage on the path of yoga, the process of surrender to truth becomes similar to a process of falling into a bottomless pit. But that is also the case on the Buddhist path. The specific Buddhist teaching on this is called Dzogchen.

There is an essential difference between the teachings described in the Vijnana Bhairava Tantra and the teachings of Gautama Buddha. This is that the Buddha described the essential cause of suffering as being desire, whereas the author of the Vijnana Bhairava Tantra considers the cause of suffering to be the idea that desire should be fulfilled, rather than simply desire itself. So, desire is considered to be another emotion or feeling and it is our relationship to that desire, which either binds us to pain and suffering, or leads us to liberation and enlightenment.

This is from verse 73:

"The yogin who relishes music and song to the extent that he merges with it, becomes filled with unparalleled happiness, attains heightened awareness and experiences oneness with the Divine."

This is markedly different from anything that you would find in the original Buddhist teachings and marks a transition that took place during the Tantric period away from ascetisism/ monasticism and towards a more all-encompassing and broader form of spiritual practice.

But, although there are some differences between the teachings of the Vijnana Bhairava Tantra and the teachings of the Buddha, they are certainly not as distinct as Sadhguru is implying here. It is important that we do not fall into the trap of encouraging (and even inventing) division, where we should be cultivating harmony and unity between spiritual traditions. This is especially true for popular teachers who have a large reach in terms of audience.

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102 Posts

Posted - Dec 14 2018 :  05:44:42 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Thanks jusmail, Christi.
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United Kingdom
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Posted - Jul 10 2020 :  09:06:32 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
I'm very interested in this topic and found the posts above interesting.
For the sake of anyone else who is interested, my investigations have found that Sadhguru at least could be correct (and in any case that is what he believes to be true).
If you would like to investigate for yourself, Osho has a meditation on each of the 112 ways and each one is very deep, each one could be a path to follow for a lifetime.
Sadhguru has said that according to his beliefs, there are no other ways to be realised other than the 112 ways, the story in his tradition, is that Shiva challenged his wife to find other ways, and she was forced to humble herself to him as she could not find any. I don't think Buddha necessarily followed 1 of the paths but the idea is that all the paths are within the 112.
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