In Part 3 of this series on Guhyasamaja tantra, we take a brief look at the fascinating origin of the tantra.
According to Aku Sherab Gyatso in his Sacred Words of Lord Akshobhya, Buddha in the appearance of a universal monarch, taught Guhyasamaja to King Indrabhuti. King Indrabhuti requested Buddha to teach a method for Enlightenment that did not necessitate abandoning the acts of sensuality. As a result of diligently practicing the tantra, the King and his retinue attained Enlightenment in a single lifetime. The king then personally taught the dharma to all of his subjects who each became Enlightened. At the place of their Enlightenment, a sea formed and it was filled with nagas (kind of like sea serpents). The deity Vajrapani appeared and taught Guhyasamaja to the nagas and thus, even the nagas became Enlightened. Later, King Visukalpa taught the tantra to naga-born Yogini who passed the lineage on to the great Indian masters Saraha and Nagarjuna…and well, the rest is history!
The most reknowned translators of the tantra were Marpa Lotsawa and Go Lotsawa.
Part 4 will give a broad overview of the actual practice suitable for a general audience.