Dari Rulai

Shaolin Dong-Xi-Dao

This category contains information about our lineages.

Esoteric Lineage

Hanmi is Chinese Esoteric Buddhism. The Buddhist masters assimilated the prevailing teaching of Confucianism and Taoism, and evolved the teaching into Hanmi, which was more easily understood by the Chinese people. Chinese Esoteric Buddhism predates the Tibetan Esoteric School, or Lamaism. Hanmi Buddhism, being forced underground for over twelve hundred years, is not as well known as Lamaism.

Hanmi Buddhism was established between 712 to 720 A.D. during the reign of emperor Tang Xuanzong (or Hsuan Tsung) by the Three Great Founders, Subhakarasimha, Vajrabodhi, and Amoghavajra. They came to the Daxing Shansi (Great Propagating Goodness Temple, the predecessor of Temple of the Great Enlightener -- MahaVairocana) in today's Xi'an City and translated many buddhistic sutras and tantras from Sanskrit to Chinese.

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The Beginning of Ch'an (Zen in Japanese) goes back to Shakyamuni Buddha and the Ch'an transmission to Mahakasyapa as recorded in the Flower Sermon. The God Brahma presented an offering of a golden Kumbhala flower to the Buddha and asked him to preach the Dharma. The Buddha said nothing but held the flower up in silence to his audience of 80,000 disciples and beings of other realms. According to the sutras, the audience looked on in confusion, while Mahakasyapa understood and smiled.  His smile came from his instant realisation.  Shakyamuni Buddha, recognizing Mahakasyapa's awakening, thus spoke:    

I possess the true Dharma eye, the marvelous mind of Nirvāṇa, the true form of the formless, the subtle Dharma gate that does not rest on words or letters but is a special transmission outside of the scriptures. This I entrust to Mahākāśyapa."

 Mahakasyapa then became the 1st of 28 Patriarchs of Chan in India:  

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Our Shaolin lineage starts with the legendary Bodhidharma.  Bodhidharma, also known as Da Mo was an Indian prince who gave up his position to become a  monk who travelled to Nanjing, China and went to see, by invitation the emperor Liang Wu Di in the year 478 (other accounts have him arriving in china in the year 527c.e.).

Bodhidharma settled at Shaolin and reformed the way that the teachings of Buddha were being taught.  He found that the monks were falling asleep during meditation and that they also had bad posture and weak bodies.  Knowing that a strong and healthy body would help the monks progress in their meditations, he taught the monks exercises which included breathing and movement. versions of these exercise sets have been passed down through the generations as shaolin Qigong.

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