Author Topic: Who is Achala?  (Read 6943 times)

dsiluvu

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Who is Achala?
« on: June 30, 2012, 04:59:16 PM »
Recently I've been hearing about this Buddha but honestly I have no clue who HE is, did some googling and this is what I found and what is most wonderful to discover is that he has a "close" connection with Buddha Manjushri... which indirectly is also "close" to Dorje Shugden right? Whatever happened to this practice? Why has it basically vanished or is rather rare I heard. Do shed some light if anyone knows ;)


Achala, Krodharaja (English: the Immovable One, King of the Wrathful).

Krodharaja Achala (English: the Immovable One, King of the Wrathful). Achala is found in two Tantras from the Kriya classification along with the Siddhaikavira Tantra - catalogued by the Sakyas as a Charya Tantra - also known as the White Manjushri Tantra. From this last Tantra Achala takes on his primary role as a remover of obstacles and secondly as the special protector for the meditational practices related to Manjushri. The continuation of this practice of linking the two deities is still found in the Sakya Tradition and likely others as yet undocumented.

Of the two Kriya Tantra practices, the Achala depicted in a kneeling posture was continued through many traditions but specially through the Sakya Tradition following the commentary by Lobpon Sonam Tsemo (1142-1182). The commentary is still in use today as the principal explanatory text. The practice of Achala in a standing posture was popularized by both Lord Atisha (982-1054) the founder of the Kadampa School followed by Mitra Yogin (12th - 13th century) famous for the text known as the Mitra Gyatsa.

In the higher Tantras of Anuttarayoga there are three, possibly more, Tantras specific to Achala. The most famous of these Tantras is the Chandamaharoshana where the deity is in a kneeling posture while embracing a consort, surrounded by a retinue of eight mandala figures.

Big Uncle

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Re: Who is Achala?
« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2012, 05:16:49 PM »
Guess what? I found the praise of Achala, which was uttered by the incomparable Lama Tsongkhapa. The English translation is available in The Splendor of an Autumn Moon: The Devotional Verse of Tsongkhapa by Tso?-kha-pa Blo-bza?-grags-pa, Gavin Kilty.

In the front part of the book it says this about the praise...

Achala is a meditation deity of the lower tantras. This praise appears to have been composed extemporaneously. The last verse mentions, somewhat wryly, its great haste, and the colophon records it as having been "spoken" by Tsongkhapa, rather than composed.

Here's the actual praise by Lama Tsongkhapa...

In Praise of the Extraordinary Deity Achala

In all my lives I place my trust in you,
extraordinary deity, protector Achala,
hear this pure prayer.

Greatest of deities, whatever I am reborn, may I never stray
from a practice sincere in word, deed, and thought,
of your mantra and meditation.

Extraordinary deity, by the power of meditation upon you,
I pray to be fostered with minds of love
by unerring spiritual masters,
and be taught the profound paths.

When I practice in sincerity the deep and swift path,
I pray, Lord of the Wrathful, that you subdue
all opposing circumstance.

Carpenter

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Re: Who is Achala?
« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2012, 05:24:08 PM »
There are more information of Archala's appearance symbolism

Archala's physical appearance derive from such scriptural source as the Mahavairocana Tantra and its annotation.

His face is expressive of extreme wrath, wrinkle-browed, left eye squinted or looking askance, lower teeth biting down the upper lip. He has the physique of a corpulent (round-bellied) child. He bears a sword on his right, and a lariat or noose on his left hand. He is engulfed in flame, and seated on a "huge rock base".
Archala is said to be a powerful deity who protects All the Living by burning away all impediments and defilements, thus aiding them towards enlightenment.

In Japanese esoteric Buddhism, according to an arcane interpretive concept known as the "three wheel-embodiments" or san rinjin Archala and the rest of the five wisdom kings are considered “embodiments of the wheel of injunction”, or beings whose actions constitute the teaching of the law (the other embodiments teach by word, or merely by their manifest existence).

Under this conceptualization, the wisdom kings are ranked superior to the Dharmapala a different class of guardian deities.

Nevertheless, this distinction sometimes fails to be asserted, or the two are openly treated as synonymous by many commentators, even in clearly Japanese religious contexts.
The Sanskrit symbol that represents Archala is h?? ??? ( conventionally transliterated k?n). However, it has been confounded with the similar glyph (??? h??), prompting some commentators to mistakenly identify the Archala with other deities. (The Sanskrit symbol is called siddham, or "seed syllable".


Jessie Fong

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Re: Who is Achala?
« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2012, 05:33:09 PM »
http://www.shakyastatues.com/statue/wrathfuldeitiesofdirectionachala
Achala
Achala is one of the wrathful deities of the direction in the north east corner. Achala is blue in color and has three faces blue, white and red. Achala holds a Vajra and a jewel and a lotus. His two principal hands hold his Prajna in embrace. In the Nepalese Vajrayana Buddhist tradition an initiation of Achala alias Chandamaharosana is essential for becoming a Buddhist priest. In Sadhanamala he is described as having one face, two arms and is squint eyed. Achala looks ferocious with fangs. Achala wears a jeweled crown and a garland of severed heads. Achala carries a sword in his right hand and a noose in the left. His sacred thread is of white snake. Achala is clad in tiger skin and bears an effigy of Akshobhya on his crown. This Protector deity is always depicted in father-mother aspect and is never to be displayed in public.

A special Tantra dedicated to Achala can be found in original Sanskrit text. His Sadhana is to be performed always in secret and is to be practiced only by those who are initiated.

It is said that through his Sadhana and worship, Achala will help the practitioner to eliminate disaster of drought, flood and to subdue thieves and enemies.
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It could be that the practice may not have vanished but rather since it is a secret practice, not much information in available.

Known in Japan as Fudo.

ratanasutra

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Re: Who is Achala?
« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2012, 06:15:06 PM »
Achala also known in Japan as Fud?-my??,  I think one of the reason that people are talking about him is because he is a guardian of people who born in the Zodiac year of the rooster.  This is very interesting.

Each zodiac is designated a deity who will offer special attention and help to the particular zodiac to provide great power in clearing obstacles and inviting wealth from endless resources. The Rooster's guardian deity is Achala whose miraculous energy helps eliminate disasters, lighten problems, attract good fortune and bring good health.

Fud? My?-? is the central deity in all My?-? groupings, and in artwork is positioned in the center. Fud? is a personification ofDainichi Nyorai, and the best known of the My?-?, who are venerated especially by the Shingon sect of Japanese Esoteric Buddhism (Mikky? ??).

Fud? converts anger into salvation;

has furious, glaring face, as Fud? seeks to frighten people into accepting the teachings of Dainichi Buddha;

carries “kurikara” or devil-subduing sword in right hand (representing wisdom cutting through ignorance);

holds rope in left hand (to catch and bind up demons);

often has third eye in forehead (all-seeing);

often seated or standing on rock (because Fud? is “immovable” in his faith).

Fud? is also worshipped as a deity who can bring monetary fortune. Also, Fud?'s left eye is often closed, and the teeth bite the upper lip; alternatively, Fud? is shown with two fangs, one pointing upward and other pointing downward.

Fud?’s aureole is typically the flames of fire, which according to Buddhist lore, represent the purification of the mind by the burning away of all material desires.

In some Japanese sculpture, Fud? is flanked by two attendants, Kongara D?ji and Seitaka D?ji. In artwork,
Fud? is often accompanied by Eight Great Youths. Fud? is also one of the 13 Deities ??? (J?sanbutsu) of the Shingon Sect in Japan. In this role, Fud? presides over the memorial service held on the 7th day following one's death.

http://www.onmarkproductions.com/html/fudo.html

icy

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Re: Who is Achala?
« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2012, 06:36:49 AM »
This is further information about Achala and where Achala orgininates from:

The Shije Tradition of Padampa Sangye was incorporated strongly into the teaching of Je Rinpoche.  Panchen Losang Chokyi Gyeltsen felt that the Shije Tradition of Mahasiddha Padampa Sangye would greatly benefit in the Gelug. Padampa Sangye's highly blessed pure lineage descended from Buddha Shakyamuni, Nagarjuna, Aryadeva, and so forth.  He therefore received the 12 Tataghata initiation of Nairatmya which included all major deities like Tara, Manjushri, Yamantaka, Vajra Varahi, Avalokeshtivara, Samantabadhra and Achala and brought this lineage to the Gelug.  In his biography Panchen Loang Chokyi Gyeltsen is quoted saying that there is no mahasidha with greater blessings for the world than Padampa Sangye!  The Gelug long life and healing practice of nourishing the inner element of the body with life force received from the external elements comes from the Ali Kali Scripture Initiation of Padampa Sangye which was also incorporated into the Gelug Tradition. 

This is a story of who Mahasiddha Padampa Sangye was.  When he felt that his works in China had finished he left for Tibet and India urging them to practise and as he wanted to get away quickly due to their protest he had accidently left one of his shoes behind.  When the Mahasiddha reached the river the boatman informed him he had no boat.  Padampa Sangye just took a leaf, placed on the water and rode it across!  The protectors Agora Mahakala and Lhamo Tashon Ma, the Tiger-Mounted Devi came after him to bring his shoe.  She emanated as a red horse that ook the shoe in its mouth and offered to Padampa Sangye.  The story is depicted in a Chinese thangka for long life and prosperity that was widely distributed in Tibet.  The symbolism of the story was that Padampa Sangye was a Mahasiddha completely free of attachment.  He did not have many possessions.  He had a single bag, his "bag of dependent arising" as it was called with several blessed objects for pacifying, increasing, subjugating and wrathful activities.