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The Lamp for Integrating the Practices (Caryamelapakapradipa)

The Gradual Path of Vajrayana Buddhism

Published by Wisdom Publications
Distributed by Simon & Schuster

About The Book

An essential tantric text on the practice of advanced yoga in tantric Buddhism.

The Lamp for Integrating the Practices (Caryamelapakapradipa) is a systematic and comprehensive exposition of the most advanced yogas of the Esoteric Community Tantra (Guhyasamaja-tantra) as espoused by the Noble (Nagarjuna) tradition, an influential school of interpretation within the Mahayoga traditions of Indian Buddhist mysticism. Equal in authority to Nagarjuna's famous Five Stages (Pañcakrama), Aryadeva’s work is perhaps the earliest prose example of the “stages of the mantra path” genre in Sanskrit. Its systematic path exerted immense influence on later Indian and Tibetan traditions, and it is widely cited by masters from all four major lineages of Tibetan Buddhism.

This volume presents the Lamp in a thoroughly annotated English translation. It includes an introductory study discussing the history of the Guhyasamaja and its exegetical traditions, surveying the scriptural and commentarial sources of the Nagarjuna tradition, and analyzing in detail the contents of the Lamp. The book also features a detailed, trilingual glossary.

Simultaneously presented online for scholars are a version of its Sanskrit original, critically edited from recently identified manuscripts, and a critical edition of the eleventh-century Tibetan translation by Rinchen Zangpo, including notes on readings found in “lost,” alternative translations.

About The Author

Product Details

  • Publisher: Wisdom Publications (May 11, 2021)
  • Length: 440 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781949163193

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Raves and Reviews

“For anyone interested in tantric Buddhism, The Lamp for Integrating the Practices is essential reading. Wedemeyer’s lucid introduction opens up a complex text, a key Indian treatise that was formative of the so-called Arya school of Guhyasamaja interpretation. Still widely practiced within today’s Geluk school of Tibetan Buddhism, the meditations discussed herein lead the qualified practitioner step-by-step through the dissolutions of ever-subtler levels of consciousness unto death and a direct encounter with the brilliance of emptiness. For scholars and modern practitioners alike, Wedemeyer’s carefully annotated translation reveals the roots of this highly influential contemplative tradition.”

– Jacob Dalton, University of California, Berkeley

“Aryadeva’s Lamp for Integrating the Practices will no doubt reach a…large…enthusiastic audience. This is cause for celebration. Wedemeyer is one of the world’s foremost scholars in this area of research, and his masterful translation remains a touchstone in the field. His brilliant and lucid introduction to the text alone is worth the price of admission.”

– Bryan Cuevas, Florida State University

“Christian Wedemeyer’s translation and study of Aryadeva’s Lamp for Integrating the Practices…[offers] a major contribution to our understanding of the Guhyasamaja Tantra, systems of tantric praxis, and esoteric Buddhist thought more broadly. This welcome…edition…[presents] Wedemeyer’s pyrotechnic erudition and fluid, but lavishly annotated, English rendition of the text in a form…accessible to a wide range of readers. AIBS and Wisdom Publications likewise deserve praise for bringing…into circulation this publication on one of the most important and influential works in the Indo-Tibetan Buddhist tradition.”

– Andrew Quintman, Wesleyan University

“Christian Wedermeyer’s The Lamp for Integrating the Practices…is one of the most extraordinary feats of tantric studies scholarship of the past half-century. Through a rich, well-written introduction and a lucid translation, it brings to light a key Indian commentary on perhaps the most important of all Buddhist esoteric traditions, that of the Guhyasamaja Tantra. The commentary, by Aryadeva, illuminates the actual path of practice suggested in the root tantra and other commentaries, describing in detail the stages to be traversed by advanced yogis en route to full buddhahood. Aryadeva's Lamp reveals much about Buddhist tantric practice in ancient India, but because the Guhysamaja tradition is very much alive today, it provides an invaluable guide for present-day practitioners, as well…. Wedermeyer’s magnificent book is especially welcome, and is a must-read for anyone—scholar or practitioner—with a serious interest in tantric Buddhism.”

– Roger Jackson, Carleton College

“A crucial work exploring what it means to be both a body and a mind, Aryadeva’s Lamp establishes Buddhist tantra among the great contemplative philosophies of the world. Wedemeyer’s translation remains a masterwork of translation, and a gift to dedicated practitioners, scholars, and explorers of the human condition.”

– Kurtis Schaeffer, University of Virginia

“The Lamp for Integrating the Practices by the Indian adept Aryadeva ranks among the major systematic expositions of Tantric Buddhism. Following its translation into Tibetan, its authority and influence were widely recognized, significantly contributing to the formation of subsequent Tibetan approaches to contemplation and yoga. Christian K. Wedemeyer’s masterful study and translation of this essential work, based upon his superb edition of the original texts in Sanskrit and Tibetan, offers a true touchstone for reading and reference by all students and scholars of Buddhist esoteric traditions.”

– Matthew Kapstein, École Pratique des Hautes Études, Paris; University of Chicago

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More books in this series: Treasury of the Buddhist Sciences