On Mantranaya

Some remarks on mantra practice from the view point of the formation and development of the esoteric Buddhist tradition.

by Chisho Mamoru Namai (Koyasan)
Original Source from: http://www.padma.org/001/lab/onmantranaya.htm

The later Indian Buddhist manuals, such as the Triyānavyavasthāna by Ratnākaraśānti and the Tattvaratnāvalī by Advayavajra, describe two ways of perfecting the Mahāyāna Buddhist path toward anuttarasamyaksambodhi: the pāramitānaya and the mantranaya.

In the history of the Buddhist esoteric tradition, the mantranaya may be derived from the practices that had been studied by Bodhisattvas who follow the mantra path as bodhi(sattva)caryā as presented in the Mahāvairocanābhisambodhisūtra. However, the establishment and development of the new way to perfection are still not so clearly described in the history of Mahāyāna Buddhism.

As a keyword which can be a clue to outlining the history of the Buddhist esoteric tradition, we can point out the word "mantradhāraṇī" used in the Yogācārabhūmi. The origin of the word may be traced back to the term "niruktipratisaṃvit" in the early Mahāyānasūtras, such as the Daśabhūmika and etc.

Tracing the changing phases of the conception of "mantra" and "dhānaṇī" in the history of Mahāyāna Buddhism, we can observe the formation of the Buddhist path of mantra practices. The way of bodhi(sattva)caryā comes to be recognized in the format of sādhanā. Obviously that evolvement is basically influenced by the prevailing Tantric cultural movements at the time generally in India.

Tibetan Buddhist tradition also advocates two ways of practice. Tsox kha pa's two main works are representative examples of this. It is also the same case in the Japanese Buddhist esoteric tradition, even today.

I would first like to describe how the new method was accepted in Mahāyāna Buddhist circles in India. Then I would like to denote the two methods of the Buddhist way toward perfection in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, comparing these with the Japanese Buddhist esoteric tradition which is another development of the original Indian tendency.

I. The Role and the Meaning of Mantranaya

- yāna, naya, sthiti -

Advayavajra(c.11c.), categorizing Buddhist traditions, divides ekayāna into three, and classifies Mahāyāna Buddhist way (naya) for perfection into two.(1) They are, the way of practicing the accomplishment of the six activities (paramitānaya), and the way through mantra practice(mantranaya). Each of the two is divided into two subcategories of philosophical position (sthiti), that of the Mādhyamika school and the Yogācara school. Ratnākaraśānti(c.11c.) also mainteins similar classification in defining the framework of the various structures of Mahāyāna.(2)

  Kukai(774-835), the founder of the Japanese Buddhist sect of Shingon (真言宗), proclaims his new Buddhism, introduced from China, as Mikkyo(密教), or esoteric Buddhism, differentiating the ordinary schools as Kengyo(顕教).(3) He also calls his new Buddhism Shingondharani-shu (眞言陀羅尼宗), or the mantradhāraṇī school of Buddhism.(4)

 Tsox kha pa(1357-1419) names his two major works as the Lam rim chen mo (Yogabhāvanā mārgakrama, Procedure by the Way of Yogic bhāvanā Practice), and the sXags rim chen mo (Mantramārgakrama , Procedure by the Way of mantra Practice). The latter deals with the systematic procedure of Mahāyana discipline through the method of mantra (mantranaya).

Both of these systems, which have developed in the different cultural regions, may have the same implication of the mantranaya as stated by the later Indian scholars.

  In general, the esoteric Buddhist tradition is called Vajrayāna ( rdo rje theg pa 金剛乗), not only in India, but also in Tibet and in Japan(5) too. In fact the term means vehicle, and means way or method. The implication of the words and may be coincidental in some cases. Sometimes they imply some certain different deviations in meaning. Historically the term is advocated for the first time in the Sarvatathāgatatattvasaṃgraha.(6) Before this sūtra, we cannot find the term. Instead of that, the phrase is applied to the disciple of Mahāyāna through mantra practice. We can find more than thirty instances of descriptions of the Bodhisattvas who go through the way of mantra discipline, in the Mahāvairocanābhisambodhisūtra. (7) Buddhaguhya(c.8,9c.), the commentator of the sūtra, used this word exclusively by comparing it with the term
.(8) The classifications of Ratnākaraśānti and Advayavajra are, without doubt, correspond to these terms. This concept of might have been used also by the later Esoteric Buddhists. Smṛtijñānakīrti(c.11c.), the founder of Smṛti tradition of the Guhyasamāja, commenting on the Bodhicittavivaraṇa defines the term as following:(9)

Then, who emancipates the two types of mind of Enlightenment (bodhicitta) ? It is said in the text [of the Bodhicittavivaraṇa ] that: Through the gate of mantra practice, Bodhisattvas are(10) and etc.

The term means spell of wisdom(vidy), magic spell to protect from evil will(rakṣ).Since [the Bodhisattvas] chant that [mantra] of which the essence consists of non-conceptional cognition (nirvikalpajñāna) and mercy(mahākaruṇā). The gate through which they [Bodhisattvas] who practicing the method of mantra descipline begin to advance, is called the gate (dvāra). Keeping the vow of samayasaṃvara, meditating on the disk of a moon or seed characters(bīja), practicing the procedure to achieve meditation ( bhāvanādhigamakrama ) is called practice (caryā ). The one, who devotes himself fervently to that [practice], is called a practitioner (cārin). The one, who practices going through the gate of mantra descipline (mantradvaracaryācārin), and whose essence is eager for the highest enlightenment(bodhisattva) is called [in a karmadhārya compound] a mantradvāra-caryācāribodhisattva.  

In the tradition of esoteric Buddhism, the prominence or dominance of this method is proclaimed. (11) There may be some remarks as stated in so many works by the esoteric Buddhists, such as swiftness, the innumerable treatments for the many varieties of sentient beings. In short, these points are only various dimensions of the same factor, the urgent and efficient salvation of every variety of sentient beings. These aspects of esoteric tradition might be called as the vehicle of Vajrayāna. However, for the practitioner, even though the yāna may be called Vajrayāna, the way of practice is called mantranaya or mantra method to perfect bodhisattvacaryā . In this case, the term mantranaya rather emphasizes the view point of the practice of Mahāyāna Buddhists. That is the way to perform the bodhisattvacaryā. There is not any difference among the attitudes of practitioners in enduring to perfect their praṇidhāna, the vow for attaining sarvajñatva and to rescue every sentient being from their miserable states. Motivated by the inner needs of these aims of the Bodhisattvas,(12) influenced by the flourishing of the external pan-Indian cultural movement, the mantranaya may be accepted as the way to perfect their bodhisattvacaryā in a certain period of the history of Mahāyāna Buddhism, at that point the Tathāgatas appear as the proclaimer of mantra.

II. Mantra and Dhāraṇī

- External influence of mantra and inner development of the conception of dhāraṇī -
In the Yogācārabhūmi, we come across the term mantradhāraṇī.(13)

Then, what is the dhāraṇī of Bodhisattvas? In short, there are four kinds of dhāraṇī, i.e., dharmadhāraṇī, arthadhāraṇī, mantradhāraṇī, bodhisattvakṣntilābhāya . . . Then, in the four, what is the mantradhāraṇī ? The Bodhisattva attains such supernatural power of samādhi including [the use of] mantra spells that manifest these powers in sentient beings (sattvānām adhiṣṭhānti) for their relerf from their ill situation. Mantra spells manifest supernormal successful achievements, most efficiently, without any insufficiency, for release from any calamity or plague of the season. It is called the status of Bodhisattvas to perform the mantra.

This case indicates the inner need for the formation of mantranaya. In fact, the term is still not used in the later developed meaning.(14) The mantrapada is not yet associated with attaining enlightenment and still not systematized in a sādhana practice. The meaning of mantra used in this case is only in the worldly meaning, as the mantra was used in pan-Indian religious scene.

This usage rather lays stress on the dhāraṇī, the status of manifestation of the truth, not on mantra. In this state, Bodhisattvas act without any difficulty in exhibiting the power of dhāraṇī to rescue sentient beings from every kind of actual misery through mantra. The usage of mantra itself is a worldly technique for healing every sentient being, a remedy for some evil, protection from evil sprits. The power can be manifested in the Boddhisattva's behavior in the state of adhiṣṭhāna. Why does the mantra reveal the power? Because, the Bodhisattva has been ennsured of his ability to deliver sentient beings from their calamity, since he had been recognized as having his indomitable resolve to work sattvahita having wisdom of truth. Therfore he can fulfill his purpose. In other words, the truth or mercy of the real state is manifested (adhiṣṭhita) in his body/ mind/speech. He is empowered by the truth(satyādhiṣṭhita).

In the Daśabhūmika, as the higher status of Bodhisattvas (avivartibodhisattva) , the unhindered super power of the fourfold wisdom is described (pratisaṃvit) i.e., dharmapratisaṃvit, arthapratisaṃvit, niruktipratisamvit, pratibhānapratisaṃvit. The third pratisaṃvit represents the eloquence of dharmabhānakas, who commands his ability of presentation to manifest the truth at his will. As the term "nirukti" shows, the ptatisaṃvit is the ensured wisdom of the preacher, who uses the language skill, who works in frontier areas, spreading the Mahāyāna knowing dialects, healing the actual misery of suffering beings by scientific knowledge (vidyā ), and doing the work of healing persons even by magical spells (mantra /rakṣā). This wisdom of actual mudnane knowledge concerning language ability, is called mantradhāraṇī in the Boddhisattvabhūmi. In thise case, mantra is accepted as the upāya for Bodhisattvas who use the power for sentient beings. This aspect originally was introduced form external trends in popular ritual in order to fulfill the aim of sattvahitārtha. As Har Dayal once suggested,(15) the ideal Bodhisattva had to play a role as a saviour in frontier areas. And prevailling inner Buddhist movements, influenced by external trends, came to accept these mantra rituals as upāya of Bodhisattvas. Bodhisattvas come to acquire the ability of eloquence, using dialects, the languages of heretics, some technical terms, even magic spells. Responding to the public trend, the Bodhisattvas come to fulfill the role with mantra methods, similar to doctors who use herbs and mantra prescriptions.(16)

In the Bodhisattvabhūmi, it is stated that as soon as Bodhisattvas realizes the status of bodhisattvagotra, he can attain the assurance to use the magic spells. From the starting point of his praṇidhāna, a Bodhisattva come to utilizes these mantras in his bodhisattvacaryā.(17) The Bodhisattva described here might be an archetype of the Bodhisattvas who go through the gate of the mantra practice. That was why the Yogācārabhūmi states this necessity of upāyakauśalya in developments of the systematical curriculum of bodhisattvacaryā.(18)

Now let us examine the text of Dharmakīrti(600-670). Dharmakīrti, when he discusses with a Mīmāṃsaka philosopher concerning mantra, reports the increasing trend of esoteric ritual using mantra (mantrakalpa) in 7th century India. (19) He refutes the absolute trueness of the mantra itself (apuruṣeyatva ), and defines the word mantra as follows:(20)

Mantra is nothing but what the term indicates. Then what is that? It is the word of one who has the power of truth [saying], who engages ascetic practice, and has super normal powers of eloquence (satyatapaḥprabhāvavat ). Even now, this can be found among the ordinary people. By the power that is empowered by the truth [saying], a certain remedy of fever can be possible. Since among the inhabitants of the frontier (śabara), these days, mantras are composed by them. Furthermore, the mantra ritual (mantrakalpa ) which is not Brahmaṇical, but belongs to Buddhist and other non-Vedic traditions can be seen.

Thus, Dharmakīrti defines the word mantra relating to the concept of satyādhiṣṭhāna. There might be some developed phases from the concept of dhāranī to that of mantra.(21) In fact, Dharmakīrti himself, notifies the more complex mantra ritual (mantrakalpa), using mudrā and maṇḍala. Here, the words of mantra themselves and some rituals with mantra are accepted as a way of Boddhisattva's disciplines. He also discribes a contemporaly aspect of the age of the same tendency in other non-Vedic religious sects.

III. Mantra ritual as a method to perfect the Bodhicaryā

There is also another aspect in the usage of mantra ritual for fulfilling the praṇidhāna of Boddhisattvas. In order to perfect his aim to be a Buddha and to act as a Buddha, the mantra ritual comes to be accepted.

In the Bodhisattvabhūmi, in the same section on caturdhāraṇī, another aspect of mantrapada is described as bodhisattvakṣāntilābhadhāraṇī .(22)

Here, a Tathāgata proclaims a mantrapada with which the Bodhisattvas advance to the highest realm of anutpattikṣānti. The mantrapada functions as the instrument for attaining the higher stages of wisdom. In this meaning we can find that the new method is introduced as an upāya to ensure the usage of mantrapada which is significant to attain the highest wisdom. However, as the author of the Bodhisattvabhūmi states, the mantrapada is used to acknowledge the voidness of the mantra itself and the anuttpāda of every thing. Furthermore, the mantrapada is only used for obtaining the status of anutpattikṣānti, and to ensure the status. This description is not on the actual sādhana practice called "mantradvaracaryācāri bodhisattvas " That mantrapada is not for use as a remedy or treatment for the actual suffering beings, but is an instruction to attain the status of the wisdom of śūnyatā, i.e., to get the anutpattikṣānti. By this power of the truth itself the mantras for worldly usage also come to be efficient, since the truth itself is manifested (adhiṣṭhita ) in the mantrapada. This aspect of the power of mantra forms the sādhanā as the way toward Buddhahood. However, the historical development of this aspect is still obscure.

The first aspect, that the mantra for the worldry purpos is prominent in the early Esoteric Buddhist Tradition, such as Dhāraṇīsaṃgrahasūtra etc. Even though, the latter aspect steadly evolves into a firm method.

The ideal of the ceremony for the prince who is born as an inheritor of the Buddha's family (tathāgatavaṃsa) to celebrate his coronation is performed in a ritual. This ceremony of abhiśeka is, possibly influenced by the external ritual of the ceremony, actually performed as a mantra ritual. In the historical development of the idea of ten Bodhisattva stages, the concept of abhiśeka is interpreted only ideationally. No ritualistic procedure is performed in the age of the Buddhāvataṃsaka. However the method of practice towords Buddhahood becomes to be considered possible through actual mantra ritual. As reported by Mr. Ohtsuka, in the Vajrapāṇyābhiśeka, the mantra ritual is represented which is an esoteric version of the Gaṇḍavyūhasūtra.(23)

In this period of history, many mantras were produced from the stock plots of Buddhist legends, or classical stock phrases which indicate the wisdom of truth, in order to construct the sādhanās. As late Prof. Ujike suggested there might have been a period when the status of dhāraṇī are reformatted into the mantrapada.(24)

Prof. Sakai, and I myself also reported that some stock phrases of wisdom are transformed into mantras, in order to use them in mantra rituals. (25)

We can find in those sources the original model of the practice from where the mantranaya is possibly be derived. There can be found two factors: the mantra for a mundane purposes (laukika), that is the general usage of pan-Indian religious circles, of which we can call the factor Mahāyānistic sublimation of the mantra : and the mantra for supermundane purposes (lokottara), which is not common to the outside of Buddhist circles, which we can describe as a [trans]formation of Mahāyānistic ideas into the mantra [ritual].

On advancing along the bodhipatha, Atīśa(982-1054) emphasizes the usage of abhijñā. In the later stage of the history of Buddhism, influenced by the prevailing Esotericism, these functions of the mantra method are acknowledged as nessesary factor to fulfill praṇīdhāna of Bodhisattvas swiftly. (26)

Kukai, indicates the method to attain Buddhahood as Sanmitsukaji (三密加持) , that means the threefold practice of the manifestation of the truth (adhiṣṭhāna) in the practitioners' threefold behavior, i.e., body, language, and mind. The term means the manifestation of the supernatural powers of the truth in a certain locus. This may be the way to achieve the Bodhisattva's aim. He proclaims the way to bcome a Buddha as svādhiṣṭhāna or ātmādhiṣṭhāna. (27)

In tracing the word <ātmādhiṣṭhāna>, we come across some significant texts, that represent the situation of the practitioners who are advancing along the way of bodhicaryā toward perfection.

By early Mahāyāna Buddhists the state of adhiṣṭhāna is considered as functioning some times as a negative influence or controlling state that forces the threefold action of sentient beings to continue their lives of calamity. However, once he makes the vow for the anuttarasamyaksambodhi ( praṇidhāna ), he overcomes the evil power of karman and comes to obtain merciful power from the Buddha/Bodhisattvas (adhiṣṭhita).(28) His threefold activity comes to be efficient to work as a Bodhisattva. Attainning some powers, he is enabled to use mantrapada power as skillful means of Boddhisattvas (upāyakauśalya ) .(29)

In this context, we can find these meaningful usages of the term . In the Buddhāvataṃsakasūtra, these three noteworthy terms are stated: / / . (30)
The first term appears in a sermon of Muktaka śresthin.(31)

As I had reported this usage at the 11th Congress of the International Association of Buddhist Studies, the term represents the following state: from the beginning of the praṇidhānacittotpāda, until the end of the perfection of the bodhicaryā, every eventuality on the way of bodhicaryā toward Buddhahood appears only in the locus of the mind of the Bodhisattva who generated his mind of enlightenment for the anuttarasamyaksambodhi. In this locus the practitioner sees the Buddha, and beholds all of the events of the Buddha's life. These phenomena are nothing but the vijñapti arising on / depending on one's own mind.

On svakāyādhiṣṭhāna, once investigated by the late Prof. Shoko Watanabe,(32) and re-examined by myself from the viewpoint of the adhiṣṭhāna of threefold activities.(33) The term presents the following states: the Bodhisattva manifesting the power of his vows in his own body and presents his body to the assemblage of the Buddhakṣetra in the ten directions, and manifests his own body for deliverring sentient beings.

The third usage of satyādhiṣṭhāna is significant in our context. As the late Prof.Watanabe had shown, the term is used in the Saddharmapuṇḍarīka .(34) By the uttering words of truth, the Bodhisattva Bhaiṣajyarāja's body is made whole and reformed for the engaging in the Bodhisattva's work. This usage is called satyādhiṣṭhāna, but actually presents the state of svakāyādhiṣṭhāna. When we relate the term with the word dharmabhāṇaka, the word comes close to another conception of dhāraṇī. The term means the word ensured as truth by truth itself. Thus as an inner movement dhārānī is inevitably associated with the ability of eloquence when dharmabhāṇaka gives sermon inspired by Buddha. In other words, his pronouncements realize the power of truth( satyādhiṣṭhāna ). This ability is united with the dhārāṇī. The Bodhisattvas' status is assured by the dhāraṇī, he receives the inspiration
(prabhāva) from the Buddha, manifests the truth itself in his threefold actions(citta/ kāya/vāg- or satya-adhiṣṭhita). In the Daśabhūmika, these dhāraṇīs are necessarily associated with the Bodhisattvas who have attained anuptattikṣānti, and who act without any difficulty in his activities. The Bodhisattvas of the eighth and ninth stages, do their work at will, manifesting their bodies in every Buddha land and illuminate the light of truth in any circle of the assemblage of preaching Buddhadharma. This dhāraṇī may not be common to the other schools, as the Yogācārabhūmi states.(35)

As we have seen, the word empowered / manifesting the power of the truth, is called satyādhiṣṭhāna, and is interchangeable word for "dhāraṇī" that protects the dharmabhāṇaka from evil influences. Thit is a certain status ensured by truth itself or truth revealers. That is why this status is necessarily connected with anutpattikṣānti.

VI. Mantranaya as a Method to Perfect Bodhisattvas' Praṇidhāna

The Mahāvairocanābhisambodhi represents the established state of the two aspects, i.e., mantra ritual for aiming at both aspects, laukika, and lokottara. This sūtra represents the
future of mantradvāracaryācāribodhisattvas who are advancing along the way toward the fulfillment of their praṇidhāna.

A typical sādhanā procedure called goso-jojin-kan (五相成身観 Meditation procedure to be a Buddha through five phases) is practiced even now in the Japanese Esoteric tradition. This procedure consists of five phases derived from the Sarvatathāgata-tattvasamgraha. (36) This text originally represents the enlightenment of Bodhisattva Sarvārthasiddhi, who is instructed in the method of mantra by the Tathāgatas, and attains a Buddhahood. The legend, in fact, represents the situation that the locus of manifestation of true existence appears, where the enlightening new Buddha reveals himself among the Buddhas in the ritual. By this procedure, the Buddhahood manifests itself in all of the threefold activities of the practitioner. In this session, the practitioner advances from the starting point of cittotpāda to the enlightenment of the highest reality, passing through five phases of meditation based on five mantras. The mantras are called prakṛtisiddhi meaning the mantras manifest the truth itself which is represented in the mantrapadas. The mantrapadas themselves are the true words manifested from the truth. However, that is not the meaning as the Mīmāṃsaka states. This may be called a typical procedure of attaining Buddhahood through the way of mantra discipline. In fact, this is the way of sammitsu-kaji, or let us say manifesting the power of the truth in one's own existence, forming mudrā, pronouncing mantra, and concentrating the mind identically with the Buddhas. Kukai calls this status Enlightenment in this immediate existence.(37)

In the procedure of the Pañcakrama, there is a procedure called "svādhiṣṭhāna"(38)
This practice is a furthermore developed style of self realization of ones own Buddhahood, in a session of meditation. This actual procedure is handed down from master to disciple in varied Tibetan sects.

These methods or techniques flourished in many kinds of traditions, and sometimes were influenced deeply by the external trends of Tantric rituals. However, for the Buddhists, even though they may be in Japanese modified style or Tibetan variated style, the essential aims to introduce the ritual or method of meditation, are skillful means to attain the anuttarasamyaksambodhi, and to perfect the praṇidhāna of Boddhisattvas. The mantranaya is, in this meaning, never differentiated or never changed from the beginning of the birth of the Bodhisattvas to the Enlightenment of the highest truth.


1. Advayavajra, Tattvaratnāvalī, ed. H.Ui, Tattvaratnāvalī, Nagoya Daigaku Bunngakubu Kenkyu Kiyou (The Journal of the Faculty of Nagoya University ), vol.3-1, 1950, pp.1-31.
2. Ratnākaraśānti, Triyānavyavasthāna, Tohoku No. 3712, 110a1ff. Ratnākaraśānti states about these two methods, in his Prajñāpāramitopādeśa, when he composed the saluting verse 6-8 as following (Tohoku No.4079, fol.134a3):
pha rol phyin pa'i tshul la yun rix dka' bas 'bras bur smin //
sxags tshul dka' ba med par myur du byax chub reg par 'gyur //
'di ni btson 'grubs 'bar ba'i stobs ldan lam ni dax po ste //
dax pas rnam par 'phel ba'i blo can rnams 'cig śos yin //6//
byax chub phyir ni śin tu dka' bas yun rixs spyod byed pa //
thub pa mams kyi sras po de ni dpa' bo yin sñam byed //
go 'phax de ñid myur du bdeb ster ber byed pa'i sxags //
bde gśegs rin chen de ni sus rig de ni skal bzax po//7//
gax gis bcom ldan pha rol phyin mchog ma //
ñin rje bzdin du bsgoms par gyur pa yis //
de yi lag na pha rol phyin pa lxa //
gnas śix sxags kyax rab tu 'grub par byed //8//
3. Kukai, Benkenmitsunikyoron, Collected Works of Kobodaishi, Criticaly Edited (空海、『辯顕密二教論』,『定本弘法大師全集』), Koyasan 1994, vol.3, p.75ff. Cf.Y.Hakeda, Kukai: Major Works, NewYork 1972, Part III, 3. The Difference between Exoteric and Esoteric Buddhism, pp.151ff.
4. Kukai, Benkenmitsunikyoron, op.cit., p.101.
5. Kukai, op.cit., vol.3, p.105.
6. Sarvatathāgatatattvasaṃgraha, ed.K.Horiuchi, Koyasan 1963, pp.313, 490:
subhāṣitam idaṃ sūtraṃ vajrayānam anuttaram /
sarvatāthāgataṃ guhyaṃ mahāyānābhisamgraham //
In this case also, the vajrayāna is not the another yāna of Mahāyana, but the uttamayāna of Mahāyāna. In the Mahāvairocanābhisaṃbodhisūtra, it is described as the paramayāna of mahāyāna.
Cf. Mahāvairocanabhisambodhisūtra, ed. T.Hattori, Tibetan Version of Mahāvairocanābhisaṃbodhi  (蔵文大日経), Hannou 1931, p.60f.:
7. ACIP(Asian Classic Input Project) released Source CD Release A in 1993. In the CD, the Electronic Text of the sūtra is contained. In searching the phrase, I used the E-text.
8. Tohoku No.2663, fol.261af. Mahāvairocanābhisaṃbodhivikurvitādhiṣṭāna-vaipulyasūtre-ndra-rāja-nāma-dharmaparyāya, ed.Y.Miyasaka, Acta Indologica VII, Narita 1995, pp.7ff. Cf. S.Sakai, Dainichikyo-Kosyaku, in The Collected Works of Shinten Sakai, vol.2, pp.3f.;also, Chi.M.Namai, On the Bodhisattvas who go through the gate of mantra practice, Shingonmon-yori Gyo-wo Gyozuru Bosatu, Commemoration Volume of Koyasan University in its 110th Anniversary of the Founding of the Koyasan University, Koyasan 1996, pp.163ff.
9. Smṛtijñānakīrti, Bodhicittavivaraṇaṭikā, Tohoku 1829, 122a4: byax chub kyi sems de gñis gax gis bskyed ce na, de bstan pa ni sxags kyi sgo nas she bya ba la sogs pa ste. de la sxags ni śes skyob ste, rnam par mi rtog pa'i ye śe s dax sñix rje'i rax bshin gsuxs nas bzlos pa'i phir ro. de dax po nas dax du len pa'i sems ni sxags kyi sgo nas spyad pa spyod pa ste, de la dax po 'jug pa'i theg pa ni sgo'o. dam tshig gi sxom pa spux shix zlo ba'i dkyil 'khor dax yi ge 'bru la sogs pa bsgom pa'i mxon par rtogs pa'i rim pa ni spyad pa'o. de rtse gcig tu bsgom pa ni spuod pa'o. sxags kyi sgo nas spad pa spyod pa yax yin la, byax chub sems dpa' yax yin pas na, sxags kyi sgo nas spyad pa spyod pa'i byax chub sems dpa' ste rnal 'byor pho mo la bya'o.
10. Nāgārjuna, Bodhicittavivaraṇa, ed.Chr.Lintdner, Nāgārjuniana, p.184: byax chub sems dpa' gsax sxags kyi sgor spyad pa spyod pa rnams kyis de ltar kun rdzob kyi rnam pas sems smon pa'i rax bzin can bsked nas, don dam pa'i byax chub kyi sems bsgom pa'i stob kyis bskyed par bya ba yin pas de'i phyir de'i rax bzhin bśad par bya'o.
11. Cf.fn.3.
12. Cf.III.
13. Bodhisattvabhūmi, ed.N.Dutt, TSṭS VII, Patna 1978, p.185, tatra katama bodhisattvānāṃ dhāraṇī. samāsataś caturvidhā draṣṭavyā. dharmadhāraṇī, arthadhāraṇī, mantradhāraṇī, bodhi-sattvakṣntilābhāya ca dhāraṇī. ... tatra mantradhāraṇī katamā. iha bodhisattvas tadrūpaṃ samādhivaśitāṃ pratilabhate yathā yāni mantrapadānīti saṃśamanāya sattvānām adhiṣṭhānti, tāni siddhāni bhavanti, paramasiddhāny amoghāny anekavidhānām ītīnāṃ saṃśamanāya. ity ucyate bodhisattvasya mantradhāraṇī. Taisho, vol .30, 542c26: 云何菩薩呪陀羅尼謂諸菩薩獲得如是等持自在由此自在加被能除有情災患諸呪章句令彼章句悉皆神驗第一神驗無所唐●能除非一種種災患是名菩薩呪陀羅尼
14. Traditionaly in Japan, the esoteric tradition after the Mahāvairocanābhisaṃbodhi is called Junmitsu(純密 sophisticated one) ṭhereas that before the sūtra is called ṇoumitsu (雜密 micscerinious). Prof. Y.Matsunaga, categoriṇed the historical period of esoteric tradition into three: Early ṃ Middle ṃ Later stages. The Middle stage is distinguished from the early one as: it aims at becoming a Buddha; The rituals, sādhanas, pūjās are systematiṇed concerning the threefold activities; The ritual are associated ṭith mantra, mudrā, maṇḍala. Cf., Y.Matsunaga, Mikkyokyoten Seiritusi-Ron ( A Study on the History of Development of Esoteric Canons ), Kyoto 1980.
15. Har Dayal: The Bodhisattva doctrine in Buddhist Sanskrit Literature, London 1932, Chap. II Origin and Development of the Bodhisattva Doctrine, pp.30ff.,54.
16. In the Buddhāvataṃsaka there is described an episode of a doctor Bodhisattva, who transforms his body into the manifestation of the poṭer of mahākaruṇa ( svakāyādhiṣṭhāna ), and lives even after his death. Cf. Tohoku No.44, ga, fol.96a:sxags dax rig sxags kyi stobs dax byin gyis rlabs kyis kyax bdag gi lus bhix gyis bslabs te, ci nas kyax bdag śi nas lus mi ñig pa dax, mi skam pa dax....;Taisho, vol.9, 617b:爾時医王以薬塗身呪術自持、令我命終之後身不乾燥又不散壞...
17. Bodhisattvabhūmi p.13:asiddhāni ca tad anyahastagatāni sattvānām ītyupadravopaśama-saṃśamakāni mantrapadāni vidyāpadāni tad dhastagatāni sidhyanti. kaḥ punar vādaḥ siddhāni. Taisho, vol.30, p.482b14 菩薩本性住,種姓時一切麁重性自微薄既發心已所有麁重轉復輕微謂身麁重及心麁重若餘衆生爲欲息滅疾疫災横所用無驗呪句明句菩薩用之尚令有驗何況驗者成就
18. Bodhisattvabhūmi, p.180-185.
19. Dharmakīrti, Svavṛtti ad Pramāṇavārttika I. 309, ed R.Gnoli, The Pramāṇavārttikam of Dharmakīrti - The First Chapter with the Autocommentary -, SOR XXIII, Roma 1960, p163f.: rathyāpuruṣā api kecana tantrajñāḥ svayaṃkṛtair kiṃcit karma kurvanti. tathānyo 'pi anatiśayaś ca kartā ca mantrāṇām iti.
na teṣām prabhāvavatāivādhiṣṭhānāt. tatkṛtam hi samayam anupālayantas tadupadeśena ca vartamānāḥ samarthaḥ. tatsamayopadeśanirapekṣānām asamarthyāt. tatrāpi tadākāradhyānāder eva prayogāt. tasmāt tadadhiṣṭhānam eva tat tādṛśam ity unnetam. api ca, so 'pi tādṛśaḥ prabhāvavān evānanyasādhāraṇaśaktitvād iti puruṣaviśeṣa eva samarthitaḥ.
20. Dharmakīrti, Svavṛtti ad Pramāṇavārttika I. 243, ed R.Gnoli, pp.123f.: nanu śaknuvanty eva puruṣāḥ mantrān kartuṃ. etad uttaratra (ad PV I 308) vicārayiṣyāmaḥ. api ca na mantro nāmānyad eva kiṃcit. kiṃ tarhi. satyatapaḥprabhāvavatāṃ samihitārthasādhanaṃ vacanaṃ. tad adyatve 'pi puruṣeṣu dṛśyata eva. satyādhiṣṭhānabalād viṣadahanādistambhanadarśanāt. śabarāṇāṃ ca keṣāṃcid adyāpi mantrakaraṇāt. avaidikānāṃ ca bauddhādīnāṃ mantrakalpānāṃ darśanāt. teṣāṃ ca puruṣakṛteḥ. tatrāpy apauruṣeyatve katham idānīṃ apauruṣeyam avitatham. baudhādīnīṃ amantratve tadanyatrāpi syāt karaṇīyam. viṣakramādikṛto bauddhā pi dṛśyate. tatrāmantratvam api vipratiṣiddham. mudrāmaṇḍaladhyānair api anakṣaraiḥ karmāṇi kriyate. na ca tāny apauruseyāni nityāni yujyate.
21. In these cases the ṭord of a spell is called mantra, the status ṭhich ensures the ṭords as truth is called dhāraṇī. In the later usage, the ṭords of a spell itself come to be called dhāraṇī. The late Prof. K.Ujike, investigating the changing phases of the concept of dhāranī, presented a hypothesis :that can be called simply the transformation of dhāraṇī to mantra. Darani no Sekai ( The World of Dhāraṇī), Osaka 1984; Darani-siso no Kenkyu (A Study on the Theory of Dhāraṇī ), Osaka 1987.
22. Bodhisattvabhūmi, p.185: tatra katamā bodhisattvasya bodhisattvakṣāntilābhāya dhāraṇī. iha bodhisattvaḥ svayaṃ pragāfhahetucaritaḥ prajñāvān praviviktavihārī vācam apy anudīrayan darśanapratham apy anāgacchan kenacit saha tathā mātrābhojī asaṃkīrṇabhojī ekaprakārāśanabhojī pradhyānaparataḥ alpaṃ rātrau svapan bahu jāgran yānīmāni tathāgatabhāṣitāni bodhisattvakṣānti-lābhāya mantrapadāni tad yathā iṭi miṭi kiṭibhiḥ kṣāntipadāni svāha. ity eteṣāṃ mantrapadānām arthaṃ cintayati tulayaty upaparīkṣate. sa eṣāṃ mantrapadānām evaṃ samyak pratipanna evam arthaṃ svayam evāśrutvā kutaścit pratividhyati. tad yathā nāsty eṣām mantrapadānāṃ kācidārthapariniṣpattiḥ nirārthā evāite. ayam eva caiṣāṃ artho yad uta nirarthatā. tasmāc ca paraṃ punaraparam arthaṃ na samaveṣate. iyatā tena teṣāṃ mantrapadā-nām ārthaḥ supratividdho bhavati.
23. The sūtra ṭas supposed to be one of the precursor texts of the Mahavairocanābhisaṃbodhi by the late Prof. Sakai. Recently, N.Ohtsuka, published some papers on the influence of the Gaṇdavyūya on the text, and precisely investigated the components of the abhiśeka ritual that renders the plots of the Gaṇḍavyūha. Cf. N.Ohtsuka, Kongoshukanjotantora no kanjo ni tsuite( On Abhiśeka Ritual of the Vajrapāṇyabhiśeka ), The Journal of Indian and Buddhist Studies, vol 44-1, 1995, pp.350ff.; Kongoshu- kanjotantra ni okeru mandaragyo ni tsuite, On the Maṇḍalavidhi of the Vajrapāṇyabhiśeka ), Buṇankyogakutaikaikiyo,vol.13, 1995, pp.272ff.
24. K.Ujike, Darani-siso no Kenkyu (A Study on the Theory of Dhāraṇī ), Osaka 1987, pp.155ff.
25. Shi.Sakai, Hosshin-ge no shingon-ka ni tuite (On Formatting the Dharmakāyagāthā into a mantra, The Mikkyobunka ( Quarterly Reports on Esoteric Buddhism ) No.111, 1975; Chi.Namai, Bodaisin-ge ni tuite no ichi-kosatsu, (On the Bodhicittagāthā ), The Mikkyobunka, vol.90, 1970; On Bodhicittabhāvanā in the Esoteric Buddhist Tradition, Tibetan Studies,-Proceedings of 7th Seminar of the International Association of Tibetan Studies- ed. E.Steinkellner, Wien 1997.
26. Tohoku No.3947, fol.239b-240a. Cf. H.Eimer, Bodhipathapradīpa, Asiatische Forschungen Band 59, ṭiesbaden 1978, S.122-127.
27. Kukai, Bebkenmitsunikyoron, Collected Works of Kobodaishi, Critical Edited (空海、『即身成仏義』 ) vol.3, p.28.由此印密言加持自身、成法界體性智毘盧遮那佛虚空法界身. Cf.Y. Hakeda, Kukai Major ṭorks, p.231.
28. Bodhisattvabhīmi, p.8: sa ca cittotpādaḥ sarva bodhipakṣyakuśalamūlasaṃgrahāya pūrvaxgamatvāt kuśalaḥ paramakauśalyaguṇayuktaḥ bhadraḥ paramabhadraḥ kalyāṇaḥ paramakalyāṇaḥ sarvasattvādhiṣṭhanakāyavāgmanoduścaritavairodhikaḥ.
29. Bodhisattvabhūmi, p.13:utpāditacittas tu bhūyasyā mātrayā mandataradauṣṭhulyo bhavati, yad uta kāyadauṣṭhulyena cittadauṣṭhulyena ca. asiddhāny api ca tad anyahastagatāni sattvānāmīty upadravopasaṃgasaṃśayakāni mantrapadāni vidyāpadāni taddhastagatāni sidhyanti.
30. Chi.M.Namai, On svacittādhiṣṭhāna, Journal of Indian and Buddhist Studies (JIBS), 43-2, 1995, pp.ff.; On svakāyādhiṣṭhāna, JIBS, 44-2, 1996; The concept of dhāraṇī in the Buddhā-vataṃsaka, Journal of the Esoteric Study. 1998.
31. Gaṇḍavyūha, ed.H. Iṇumi & T.D.Suṇuki, The GANDAVYUHA SUTRA critically edited, part I, Kyoto 1949, pp.82,83: i. iti hi kulaputra yasyāṃ yasyāṃ diśi yasyāṃ yasyāṃ lokadhātau yaṃ yam eva tathāgataṃ draṣṭum ākāxkṣāmi, taṃ tam eva tathāgataṃ paśyāmi yasmin yasminn adhvani yasmin yasminn ārambaṇe yasyāṃ yasyāṃ pūrvacaryāyāṃ tathāgataṃ draṣṭum ākaxkṣāmi, yasmin yasmin vikurvitakāraṇe yasmin yasmin sattvavinayakāraṇe yaṃ yaṃ tathāgataṃ draṣṭum ākaxkṣāmi taṃ tam eva tathāgataṃ paśyāmi .
ii. na ca te tathāgatā ihāgacchanti, na cāhaṃ tatra gacchāmi, so 'haṃ kulaputra na kutaścid āgamanatāṃ tathāgatānāṃ prajānan, na kvacid gamanatāṃ svakāyasya prajānan svapnopama
vijñaptiṃ ca tathāgatānāṃ prajānan svaccittasamavicāravijñaptiṃ svapnasya prajānan pratibhāsasamavijñaptiṃ ca tathāgatānāṃ prajānann acchodakabhājanavijñaptiṃ ca svacittasya prajānan māyākṛtarūpavijñaptiṃ ca tathāgatānāṃ prajānan māyopamavijñaptiṃ ca svacittasya prajānan pratiśrutkāgirighoṣānuravaṇatāṃ ca tathāgataghoṣasya prajānan pratiśrutkāsamavijñatiṃ ca svacittasya prajānann.
iii. evam anugacchāmy evam anusmarāmi svacittādhiṣṭhānaṃ bodhisattvānāṃ sarvabuddhadharma iti.
svacittādhiṣṭhānaṃ sarvabuddhakṣetrapariśuddhiḥ svacittādhiṣṭhānaṃ sarvabuddhabodhi-sattvacaryā svacittādhiṣṭhānaṃ sarvasattvaparipākavinayaṃ svacittādhiṣṭhānaṃ sarva-bodhisattvapraṇidhānābhinirhāraḥ svacittādhiṣṭhānaṃ sarvajñatānagarānuprāptiḥ svacittādhiṣṭhānam acintyabodhisattvavimokṣavikrīfanatā svacittādhiṣṭhānaṃ buddhabodhyabhi-saṃbodhaḥ svacittādhiṣṭhānaṃ samantadharmadhātusamavasaraṇavṛṣabhitāvikurvitaṃ svacittādhiṣṭhānaṃ sarvakalpasūkṣmasamavasaraṇajñānam iti .
tasya mama kupaputraivaṃ bhavati, svacittam evopastambhayitavyaṃ sarvakuśalamūlaiḥ svacittam eva pariṣyandayitavyaṃ dharmameghaiḥ svacittam eva pariśodhayitavyaṃ ārambaṇīyadharmebhyaḥ svacittam eva drfhīkartavyaṃ vīryeṇa svacittam eva śamīkartavyaṃ kṣāntyā svacittam eva praṇayitavyaṃ jñānānugameṣu svacittam evottāpayitavyaṃ prajñayā svacittaṃ evābhinirharttavyaṃ vaśitāsu svacittam eva vipulīkartavyaṃ buddhasamatāyāṃ svacittam evāvabhāsayitavyaṃ daśatathāgatabalaiḥ.
etam ahaṃ kulaputrāsaxgavyūhaṃ tathāgatavimokṣaṃ jānāmy āyūhāmi niryūhāmi.
32. Sho.Watanabe, Adhiṣṭhāna no bunkengakuteki-siron, A Bibliographical Study on Adhiṣṭhāna,The Naritasanbukkyokenkyukiyou, vol.2, 1977. He had investigated wholly texts of early Buddhist literature and classified the usage of the term "adhiṣṭhāna" into these four:
A. prajñādhiṣṭhāna, jñānādhiṣṭhāna B.satyādhiṣṭhāna C.tyāgādhiṣṭhāna D.upaśamādhiṣṭhāna.
33. On svakāyādhiṣṭhāna, JIBS, 44-2, 1996.
34. Saddharmapuṇḍarīkasūtram, ed. P.L.Vaidya, BST No.6, Darbhanga 1960, p.237:
 mā yūyaṃ kulaputr āmām axgahnaī dṛṣṭvā rudata, mā krandata, mā paridevadhvam ṃ eṣo 'haṃ kulaputrā ye kecid daśasu dikṣu anantāparyantāsu lokadhātuṣu buddhā bhagavantas tiṣṭhanti dhriyante yāpayanti, tān sarvān  buddhān bhagavataḥ sākṣiṇaḥ kṛtvā teṣāṃ purataḥ satyādhiṣṭhānaṃ karomi, yena satyena satyavacanena svaṃ mama bāhuṃ tathāgatapūjāparityajya suvarṇavarṇo me kāyo bhaviṣyati ṃtena satya-vacanena ayaṃ mama bāhur yathāpaurāṇo bhavatu, iyaṃ ca mahā-pṛthivī ṣafvikāraṃ  prakampatu, antarīkṣagatāś ca devaputrā mahāpuṣpavarṣaṃ pravarṣantuṃ iti
35. Taisho, vol.30,735c04,曼殊室利菩薩復白佛言。唯願世尊爲諸菩薩略説契經調伏本母不共外道陀羅尼義。由此不共陀羅尼義令諸菩薩得入如來所説諸法甚深密意。....
36. Sarvatathāgatatattvasamgraha, ed.K.Horiuchi, pp.24-29:
(i) atha sarvārthasiddhir bodhisattvo mahāsattvaḥ sarvatathāgatais coditaḥ samānas tataḥāspānaka-samādhito vyutthāya sarvatathāgatān praṇipatyâhuya evam āha. bhagavantas tathāgatāḥ ājñāpayata. kathaṃ pratipādyāmi. kīdṛśaṃ tattvam iti. evam ukte sarvatathāgatās taṃ bodhisattvam ekakāṇṭhena-ivam āhuḥ.
pratipadyasva, kulaputra, svacittapratyavekśāsamādhārena prakṛtisiddhena rucijaptena mantreṇa  oṃ cittaprativedhaṃ karomi iti.... (ii),(iii),(iv)....
(v)  atha vajradhātur mahabodhisattvas tan sarvatathagatan evam āha;
 paśyāmi bhagavantas tathāgatāḥ, sarvatathāgatakāyam ātmānam.
   sarvatathāgatāḥ prāhuḥ.
  tena hi mahāsatva satvavajraṃ sarvākāravaropetaṃ buddhabimbam ātmānaṃ bhāvayânena prakṛtisiddhena mantreṇa rucitaḥ parijāpya
  oṃ yathā sarvatathāgatās tathâham //
37. Kukai, Sokushinjobutu-gi, op.cit, vol.3, p.26ff. Cf.Y.Hakeda, Kukai Major Works, p.231.
38. Pañcakrama,  ed. K.Mimaki & T.Tomabechi, Bibliotheca Codicum Asiaticorum 8, Tokyo 1994, p.32:
 svādhiṣṭhānakramo nāma saṃvṛteḥ satyadarśanam /
 gurupādaprasādena labhyate tac ca nânyathā //III.10// ..........

svdhiṣṭhnakramaṃ labdhv sarvabuddhamayaḥ prabhuḥ /
janmanhaiva buddhatvaṃ niḥsaṃdehaṃ prapadyete // III.12 // .....
darpaṇe vimale vyaktaṃ dṛśyate pratibimbavat /
bhāvbhāvavinirmukto vajrasattvaḥ sucitritaḥ //III.24//
sarvākāravarôpeto asecanakavigrahaḥ /
darśyet taṃ suśiṣyāya svādhiṣṭhānam tad ucyate //III.25//
iyam eva hi saṃlakṣyā māyā nirdoṣalakṣaṇā /
māyâiva saṃvṛteḥ satyaṃ kāyaḥ sāmbhogikaś ca saḥ //III.26//
sâiva gandharvasattvaḥ syād vajrakāyaḥ sa eva hi /
vajrasattvaḥ svayaṃ tasmāt svasya pūjāṃ pravartayet //III.27//
ātmā vai sarvabuddhatvaṃ sarvasauritvam eva ca /
tasmāt sarvaprayatnena hy ātmānaṃ pūjayet sadā //III.28//
darpaṇapratibimbaṃ ca svapnaṃ māyāṃ ca budbudam /
indrajālaṃ ca sādṛśyaṃ paśyet sa prabhuḥ smṛtaḥ //III.34//
sarvatra sarvataḥ sarvaṃ sarvathā sarvadā svayam /
sarvabuddhamayaṃ siddhaṃ svaṃ ātmānaṃ sa paśyati //III.37//