Introduction to Tantra : The Transformation of Desire
According to Buddhism, every human being has the potential to achieve profound and lasting happiness. And according to the tantric teachings of Buddhism, this remarkable transformation can be realized very quickly if we utilize all aspects of our human energy, especially the energy of our desires. Introduction to Tantra is the best available clarification of a subject that is often misunderstood. This new edition of the classic text includes a new foreword by Philip Glass and new cover art, but leaves untouched Lama Yeshe's excellent original text, edited by Jonathan Landaw. Tantra recognizes that the powerful energy aroused by our desire is an indispensable resource for the spiritual path. It is precisely because our lives are so inseparably linked with desire that we must make use of desire's tremendous energy not just for pleasure, but to transform our lives. Lama Yeshe presents tantra as a practice leading to joy and self-discovery, with a vision of reality that is simple, clear, and extremely relevant to 21st-century life.
An amazing book and probably the best introduction to tantra available!
By Patrick D. Goonan "see profile for URL" - May 24, 2006
Tibetan Buddhism is a very complex and difficult topic to explain to anyone, especially people from the West. Lama Yeshe had a rare gift to take difficult concepts, present them logically and concisely, in a way that brings the essence of tantra to life.
What this book is not about, is "tantric sexual practices" as they are so often presented out of contex in the West. Rather, it is about the tantrayana (resultant) path of harnessing all of your energies and realizing your true nature in the present moment, which is love, compassion and wisdom. This is in contrast to the sutrayana (causal) path, which is the more gradual path of cleansing the mind and replacing conditioned responses in a slow and systematic way with more beneficial responses characterized by love and wisdom.
In a nutshell, tantrayana is the fast path. This book explains this complicated system very well in approximately 168 pages. For people looking for more in-depth explanations and lots of... read more
A real pleasure to read and explore...
By Jonathan Evatt "Author, international lecture... - May 15, 2000
<< Lama Yeshe >> I feel that one of the primary gifts Lama Yeshe brought to the "western" world as a Tibetan Buddhist, was his ability to explore and describe Tantra in great depth and detail, yet from a culturally independent perspective.
Much of the really authentic, un-Americanized, non-newage etc. info and teachings on Tantra is, in my experience, essentially coming from various Tibetan Lamas, practitioners, and scholars. Many of them, in my experience, maintain a perspective on Tantra that is nearly always heavily over-toned by a great deal of cultural (Tibetan) views, beliefs, history, and dogma that are in actual fact quite independent from Tantra itself. These cultural elements have value and appeal, but they have little or nothing to do with Tantra. Which, in it's essence, is free from all cultural and social thought-forms.
Lama Yeshe has beautifully stepped right through all that; going directly into the essence of Tantra itself. Not Tibetan... read more
Lives up to its title
By A. Doyle - March 27, 2007
This is a very good book for learning what Tantra is and what tantric practices and visualizations are, but it should be understood - and probably is by many or most - that this is not a substitute for real study under a qualified teacher. Lama Yeshe makes this clear from chapter to chapter. My only caution is that readers should not expect to read this book and feel as though they are completing some kind of introductory-level "training" in Tantra, or that they will accomplish "Transformation of Desire." It is an introduction and overview for outsiders looking in (taught by a highly qualified and respected insider), not a "manual" for beginning practitioners to achieve readiness for intermediate or advanced tantric instruction. Insofar as this is understood, Lama Yeshe does a very good job describing and explaining Tantra and its practices, and I learned quite a lot about it.