Gorampa Sönam Senge – Distinguishing the Views

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Gorampa Sönam Senge (1429-1489) was one of the greatest masters and most prolific authors of the Sakya tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. Famous for consolidating and systematising the philosophical teachings of his school, his works are considered standard treatises which are still studied at all the philosophical institutions of this tradition and others.

This text is one of his main works on the Madhyamaka school of thought. Gorampa starts by refuting two views of reality he holds to be mistaken, namely those taught by Dolbuba Sherab Gyaltsen (1292-1361), often regarded as the founder of the Jonang school, and by Tsongkhapa Lobsang Dragpa (1357-1419), founder of the Gelug tradition. He then presents the Middle Way according to his own school, emphasising its adherence to the original intention of the Indian tradition. This treatise offers a key to unlock the profound thought of one of Tibet’s greatest luminaries and most influential teachers.

Table of Contents:

Foreword
Translators’ Preface
Acknowledgments

I    Verses of homage
II    Main Text

Explanations of the Three Systems
A.    Presenting the system which asserts the extreme of eternalism as Madhyamaka
B.    Presenting the system which asserts the extreme of annihilationism as Madhyamaka
C.    Explaining the system which asserts ‘freedom from extremes’ as Madhyamaka

Refuting the First Two Systems
1.    Refuting the system which asserts the extreme of eternalism as Madhyamaka
2.     Refuting the system which asserts the extreme of annihilationism as Madhyamaka.

Establishing the Third System
3.    Establishing the system which asserts ‘freedom from extremes’ as Madhyamaka

III    Brief Version of Distinguishing the Views in Verse Form
IV    Colophon

Glossary
List of Sūtras Cited
List of Philosophical Treatises Cited
Endnotes

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