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Book Cover
Author Gamble, Ruth, 1972- author

Title Reincarnation in Tibetan Buddhism : the Third Karmapa and the invention of a tradition / Ruth Gamble
Published New York : Oxford University Press, 2018
Online access available from:
Oxford Scholarship Online    View Resource Record  


Description 1 online resource
Contents Introduction : The Karmapas' Journey to Xanadu -- The Elements of Reincarnation. Lifetimes -- Lineages -- Communities -- Landscapes -- The Journey of a Lifetime. From Death to Childhood -- From Latö to Tsurpu -- Into the Mountains -- Between Kongpo and Xanadu -- Conclusion : The Karmapas' Estate -- Appendix. Notes on Rangjung Dorjé's Autobiographies and Biographies
Summary "Reincarnation in Tibetan Buddhism examines how the third Karmapa hierarch, Rangjung Dorjé 1284-1339) transformed reincarnation from a belief into a Tibetan tradition. It surveys his life through the portal of his previously untranslated autobiographical stories and songs, which reveal the reincarnation tradition's rudiments. They include Rangjung Dorjé's synthesis of the first three Karmapas' biographies and past-life stories (jātaka), upon which the later tradition was reliant. An analysis of these works shows how they used different strategies to authorize the Karmapas' reincarnate status: they presented the Karmapa reincarnates as an extension of the Kagyü religious lineage, evoked well-known precedents of reincarnation, and highlighted the recognition they received from religious and secular hierarchs, including the Mongol Emperor. This analysis also emphasizes the important role local communities played in maintaining the Karmapas' institutions, and how Rangjung Dorjé sort this support by living in the same sacred sites as his predecessors. Reincarnation in Tibetan Buddhism argues, furthermore, that all of these elements of the tradition worked together; the stories of the Karmapas' lives enhanced Rangjung Dorjé's authority, which helped to sanctify the sites in which he lived, and this, in turn, elicited more support from local communities, who then continued to tell his multi-life narrative. At the beginning of Rangjung Dorjé's life, no one had gone looking for a new Karmapa. But his skill in storytelling, and the elite and community support that he cultivated during his life meant that after he died, many expected his return"--
Analysis Australian
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references and index
Notes Print version record
Subject Rang-byung-rdo-rje, Karma-pa III, 1284-1339.
Reincarnation -- Buddhism.
Buddhism -- Tibet Region -- History.
Reading List ASR207 recommended text 2019
Form Electronic book
Author EBSCOhost
ISBN 9780190690786 (electronic bk)
019069078X (electronic bk)