Out now: Kulandanda's 'Teachers of Enlightenment'On Wed, 19 July, 2023 - 10:00
Some of you will already be familiar with Kulananda’s book, Teachers of Enlightenment, which has been out of print for quite a while now.
We have been waiting for the opportunity to make some important additions, and so we are very excited to announce that the wait has finally come to an end. This week, we are releasing a new and updated edition of Teachers of Enlightenment: The Refuge Tree of the Triratna Buddhist Order.
Out of the depths of a clear blue sky emerges a beautiful tree of white lotus flowers. On the tree are many figures - historical, mythical, and transcendental - each a teacher of enlightenment. This image of the Refuge Tree places the historical lineage of the Triratna Buddhist Order within a realm of mythological unity. Using the affective power of symbolism, it evokes the compassionate wisdom that each figure represents.
In his book, Kulananda introduces us to the buddhas, bodhisattvas, and human practitioners visualised in the Going for Refuge and Prostration Practice. He teaches us the importance of inspiration, reverence and receptivity on our own spiritual paths. We learn that by visualising the tree, and by appreciating the qualities and contributions of the figures upon it, our imagination can become a source of connection and transformation.
This new edition includes Dr Ambedkar and Anagarika Dharmapala, with additional text from Vajratara, updated images from Aloka and a new cover by Akasajoti. It is a great introduction to the Refuge Tree, and offers a valuable way of looking at the Buddhist tradition as a whole.
Buy Teachers of Enlightenment (US)
Praise for Teachers of Enlightenment
‘Though Teachers of Enlightenment contains much useful information about the figures on the Refuge Tree, about the Buddhist scriptures, and about the historical development of Buddhism, it is above all a call to spiritual practice.’ – Urgyen Sangharakshita, Buddhist teacher and founder of the Triratna Buddhist Order
‘For anyone exploring the Going for Refuge and Prostration Practice of the Triratna Buddhist Order, Teachers of Enlightenment has long been an essential guide. Kulananda presents a wonderful description of each figure, enabling our practice to come alive. This new edition now includes Vajratara’s excellent introduction to Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar and Anagarika Dharmapala.’ – Kalyacittā, women’s ordination team, Tiratanaloka Retreat Centre
‘This book is a timely reminder that Buddhism is not reducible to a set of self-help techniques; it invites us to participate in a cosmic myth, which is the compassionate liberation of all beings.’ - Nagapriya, author of The Promise of a Sacred World: Shinran’s Teaching of Other Power
Listen to the Podcast
If you missed it, you can listen to our podcast on Teachers of Enlightenment. In this episode, Vajratara shares with Dhammamegha her own relationship with the Going For Refuge and Prostration Practice, and explores the role of the Refuge Tree in the ‘collective myth’ of the Triratna Buddhist community. They speak about the inclusion of Dr. Ambedkar from India and Anagarika Dharmapala from Sri Lanka as engaged teachers whom Sangharakshita found inspiring.