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Tibetan Buddhism - The Lachen mystic

Identifier

003590

Type of spiritual experience

Background

The death prayer seems to be a common feature of magicians, the Kahuna were also able to issue the death prayer.  The flying probably relates to out of body flight – it usually does.

A description of the experience

With Mystics and Magicians in Tibet – Alexandra David-Neel

Perched on a mountain slope, a humble monastery dominates the villagers dwellings.

I visited it the day after my arrival, but finding nothing of interest in the temple, I was about to leave when a shadow darkened the luminous space of the wide-open door: a lama stood on the threshold.

I say “'a lama", but the man did not wear the regular monastic garb, neither was he dressed as a layman.  His costume consisted of a white skirt down to his feet, a garnet-coloured waistcoat, Chinese in shape, and through the wide armholes, the voluminous sleeves of a yellow shirt were seen. A rosary made of some grey substance and coral beads hung around his neck, his pierced ears were adorned with large gold rings studded with turquoises and his long, thick, braided hair  touched his heels.

This strange person looked at me without speaking, and as at that time I knew but little of the Tibetan language, I did not dare to begin a conversation. I only saluted him and went out.

A young man, my general factotum, was waiting for me on the terrace of the monastery. As soon as he saw the lama descending the steps of the peristyle behind me, he prostrated himself thrice at his feet, asking for his blessing.

This astonished me, for the lad was not usually lavish with such signs of respect, and honoured none in this way. 

"Who is this lama?" I asked him as I returned to the travellers' bungalow.

" He is a great gomchen," the boy replied. " One of his monks told me, while you were in the temple. He has spent years alone, in a cave high up in the mountains.  Demons obey him and he works miracles. They say he can kill men at a distance and fly through the air.

What an extraordinary man! I thought.

 

The source of the experience

Tibetan Buddhism

Concepts and Symbols used in the text or image

Activities