Highest Yoga Tantra
|Four classes of tantra|
|Three outer classes|
Highest Yoga Tantra (Skt. Niruttara-yoga Tantra; Tib. བླ་ན་མེད་པའི་རྣལ་འབྱོར་གྱི་རྒྱུད་, Wyl. rnal 'byor bla na med pa'i rgyud) is the highest of the four classes of tantra according to the Sarma tradition of Tibetan Buddhism.
Highest Yoga Tantras are divided into:
- the Heruka Class, which includes the Chakrasamvara Tantra and Hevajra Tantra;
- the Permanence Class; and
- the Vajrasattva Class, which includes the Kalachakra Tantra.
The Mother Tantras are also sometimes categorized in six classes.
- Ringu Tulku, The Ri-me Philosophy of Jamgön Kongtrul the Great (Boston & London: Shambhala Publications, 2006), pages 86-93.
- Desire Class, which includes the Guhyasamaja Tantra;
- Anger Class, which includes the Yamantaka Tantra; and
- Ignorance Class, which includes the Manjushri Tantra.
- Ringu Tulku, The Ri-me Philosophy of Jamgön Kongtrul the Great (Boston & London: Shambhala Publications, 2006), pages 79-86.
Non-dual Tantras (Skt. advaya tantra; Tib. གཉིས་མེད་ཀྱི་རྒྱུད་, nyimé kyi gyü, Wyl. gnyis med kyi rgyud) - one of the three classes of Highest Yoga Tantra according to the Sarma tradition. It includes tantras such as the Kalachakra Tantra. The Sakya tradition considers Hevajra Tantra to be a non-dual tantra.
On the term "Anuttarayoga"
In spite of the popularity of "Anuttarayoga" as a so-called 'back translation' from the Tibetan rnal 'byor bla na med pa into Sanskrit, scholars now prefer the term niruttara-yoga as this is better attested in original Sanskrit sources.
- Unexcelled Yoga Tantra (James Gentry/84.000)
- See Jacob Dalton, "A Crisis of Doxography: How Tibetans Organized Tantra During the 8th-12th Centuries" in Journal of the International Association of Buddhist Studies vol. 28 No. 1, 2005, p. 152, n. 84, where he calls this "a time-honoured mistake that needs to be abandoned". niruttara (निरुत्तर) means having no superior.
- Daniel Cozort, Highest Yoga Tantra (Ithaca: Snow Lion, 2005).
- Tenzin Gyatso, the Fourteenth Dalai Lama, The World of Tibetan Buddhism (Boston: Wisdom Publications, 1995), '19. Advanced Tantric Practice: Highest Yoga Tantra'.
- Ringu Tulku, The Ri-me Philosophy of Jamgön Kongtrul the Great (Boston & London: Shambhala Publications, 2006)
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