By David M. DiValerio
During the previous millennium, definite Tibetan Buddhist yogins have taken on profoundly norm-overturning modes of costume and behaviour, together with draping themselves in human continues to be, eating grime, upsetting others to violence, or even appearing sacrilege. They turned identified all over the place as "madmen" (smyon pa, said nyönpa), reaching a level of saintliness within the technique. This booklet deals the 1st finished examine of Tibet's "holy madmen" drawing on their biographies and writings, in addition to tantric commentaries, later histories, oral traditions, and more.
Much of The Holy Madmen of Tibet is devoted to interpreting the lives and legacies of the 3 most famed "holy madmen" who have been the entire Kagyü sect: the Madman of Tsang (author of The lifetime of Milarepa), the Madman of Ü, and Drukpa Künlé, Madman of the Drukpa Kagyü. every one born within the 1450s, they rose to prominence in the course of a interval of civil conflict and of serious shifts in Tibet's non secular tradition.
By targeting literature written by way of and in regards to the "holy madmen" and at the yogins' relationships with their public, this booklet deals in-depth appears to be like on the narrative and social strategies out of which sainthood arises, and on the position biographical literature can play within the formation of sectarian identities. by way of displaying how understandings of the "madmen" have replaced through the years, this learn makes it possible for new insights into present notions of "crazy wisdom." after all, the "holy madmen" are visible as self-aware and useful people who have been something yet insane.