1. According to the evidence of Original Pure Land form of Buddhism, Siddhartha Gautama Buddha (Shakyamuni) did reveal the existence of God, as the triune Tri-Kaya or Three Bodies / Forms or Purushas / Persons of the Godhead.
1. Adi Purusha Dharma Kaya = Hrih (Sri Krishna),
2. His emanation savior form = Sambhogya Kaya Hrih (Balarama-Vishnu)
3. His all-pervasive form in the heart of all beings = Rupa Kaya Hrih (Paramatma / Hrih in the heart.) According to the pure land-related Mahayana Buddhist tradition, these teachings could not be heard, received or understood by those of the Theravadin mentality. Only those with the Bodhi heart of compassion could receive the pure land teachings. http://www.tortuga.com/ur/buddha.html
While there is no teaching on “God” there is the doctrine of the Trikaya or three bodies:
1. Dharmakaya, body of truth.
2. Samboghakaya, radiant or rainbow body.
3. Nirmanakaya, body of transformation, or physical body.
(Nirmanyakaya may also be called Rupa kaya) each of these ‘bodies’ of the Buddha is associated with names and forms (nama-rupa) throughout the range of pure land or Mahayana Buddhism. I have taken considerable effort to study these names and forms of the Purushas / persons of the Trikaya, and can report that without any doubt these are names and forms of
1. Sri Krishna,
2. Sri Baladeva-Vishnu
3. Sri Vishnu incarnate and / or lord Paramatma.
Sometimes there is an overlapping between the forms and functions of Amitabha and Amitayus (1 and 2) and Avalokiteshvara and Lokeshvara as incarnations or Hrih (Hiri in the Pali Language) the inner mentor and lord in every heart.
Here is how another scholar explains the Trikaya… [caps in brackets mine] http://departments.colgate.edu/great…5/mahayana.txt
*** The rise of the Mahayana *** by Graeme lyall
Trikaya or three body doctrine: This is a purely Mahayana concept of the Buddha having three bodies:
[First Person] Dharmakaya body:the dharma body – the eternal dharma which lies beyond all dualities and conceptions.
[Second Person] Sambhogakaya body: the enjoyment or bliss body which appears to Bodhisattvasin the celestial realm.
[Third person] Nirmanakaya – or appearance body, the way the transcendental principle appears in the world, such as the material body of Sakyamuni Buddha.
H.H. the Dalai Lama and other Mahayana Buddhist scholars have mentioned the similarity between the Tri Kaya and the Catholic Christian Trinity. What they do not realize is that there is an historical connection between the Trikaya and the Trinity through the Vaishnava worship of Sri Krishna-Baladeva (Vishnu)-Paramatman.
In some Buddhist lands, Lokeshvara has also been confused with his feminine Shakti, which has given rise to the loss of paired Purusha-Prakriti devotions, and to their replacement with exclusivistic devotion to mother Kuan Yin. http://departments.colgate.edu/great…5/mahayana.txt
The devotional aspect: This has been likened to the bhakti or devotional cults in Hinduism. It is the worship of Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, especially Amitabha Buddha by the pure land sect of the Mahayana where constant repetition of the name “Amitabha” is believed to result in rebirth in the western paradise of Buddha Amitabha, the Buddha of infinite light. Another popular bodhisattva is Avalokitesvara, the embodiment of compassion, known in China as Kwan Yin. She is worshipped and called upon for help when a crisis occurs. More sophisticated Buddhists see these deities as aspects of Buddha and fix their minds on them in the hope of assimilating their qualities.
Unfortunately the original pure land teachings have been corrupted with Theravadin Voidism now. One of the purposes of my Buddhism series on saragrahi.org is to help to expose the Theravadin corruption of original pure land Buddhism, and encourage a revival of pure land Buddhist bhakti. In the 19th century Olcott the Theosophist helped (from Sri Lanka) to organize the Theravadin Buddhists internationally to thus create a powerful form of unified Voidist Buddhist traditions that successfully obscured the reality of authentic pure land Buddhist Bhakti Schools. Under the influence of this Voidist alliance, the world perception grew that all original Buddhism was Voidist, and the other devotional forms were all later Hinduised corruptions. Actually the reverse is the truth. Original Buddhism was theistic and devotional ‘other-powered’ / Salvific, and the Voidist form from the time of Shakyamuni was the corruption.
If a knowledgeable Krishna-Vaishnava studies the pure land Buddhist sources (ancient Sanskrit and Sanskrit-related writings, iconography and holy places etc.) Such a Vaishnava will undoubtedly recognize many familiar Vaishnava deity names, terms, doctrines, Murtis and centers / holy places all shared in the ancient times with pure land Buddhism.
Saragrahi.org is off-line at the moment, but when it is back online. Please read my comparison of quotes from the Bhagavad-Gita as it is and the most important pure land text the Saddharamapundarika. In the Gita, Sri Krishna describes how he descends to save beings. In the Saddharmapundarika, Shakyamuni, as the incarnation of Avalokiteshvara (Vishnu), describes his descent to save all beings in the very same Sanskrit terms / deity names as Sri Krishna uses in his Gita.
*According to pure land Buddhism there have been countless Buddha incarnations in countless Buddha worlds.
2. According to the earliest pure land schools he did teach the existence of the self, and the divine other-power salvation of beings. This other-power tradition is preserved in part throughout various forms of Pure Land Buddhism. For example, in Japanese Pure Land Buddhism, at the time of death, the Lord and his heavenly host descend to welcome the soul (who has called on him) to his pure land, where there is no more material birth death disease or old age. From this pure land of infinite Lotus-Dvipas (Vaikuntha) the beings can continue to make spiritual progress. There is no exhaustion of merit and fall from the Pure Land. Beings can descend from there to help and greet souls, but it is a place of no-return as far a ‘sin’ is concerned, as the grace of Amida covers and purifies all beings in the pure land. Countless ‘Amida Raigo’ icons were created for worship / meditation in the Japanese tradition. These were often the main icon in the shrine. A family would chant the Nembutsu holy name of the Amida invocation while gazing at the Amida Raigo salvific descent of Amida. While in japan, I even saw one in which Amida and his host were descending to take a premature baby back to the pure land. People might commission such icons to memorialize their loved ones as in the safe company of the lord.
Here are 4 Amida Raigo paintings
Buddha Lokesvara was worshiped in his cosmic 1000 armed form (Vishva Rupa Vishnu Murti)
Avalokiteshvara or Lokeshvara is a form of Amitayus / Baladeva
http://www.greatmystery.org/images/avalokiteshvara.jpg amitayus the original
Master and “The Guide of Souls”
His beautiful two armed form
Avalokiteshvara / Vishnu at the Pure Land Buddhist / Vaishnava center at Angkor Wat.
As Amitayus, Lokesvara or Chenrezi in his white or ‘crystal’ form, the second person of the Amitabha / Amida Godhead was the master of all mysteries and the alter-form od Avalokiteshvara or Lokesvara.
He is the logos lord who reveals the holy name (see his Japamala) and he is the initiator into the Mysteries of Our Lady the Mystical Rose, Lotus or Star (see his Red Flower!)
poe.acc.virginia.edu/~hl2m/amitayus.html – 3k
Amitayus Buddha or “Buddha of boundless life” is considered the Sambhogakaya Aspect of the widely known Amitabha Buddha or “Buddha of Boundless light.”
For those who have shown a sincere and open-minded interest in my writings on Buddhism, I will try to answer a few questions for you. You will have to look these things up, as I do not have the energy to write people separately on all of these things. Please continue to read my writings for more details on this and other important matters.
Note: this was written in 2003. Some links may no longer be active.