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Asura Cave

Anisha Rauniyar June 28, 2020

Situated toward the south of Kathmandu, the town of Pharping is a notable spot of journey for the fans of Vajrayana Buddhism, since it is the site of two caverns related with Padmasambhava. This Indian ace who initially carried Buddhist tantra to Tibet is said to have thought and accomplished an elevated level of otherworldly achievement in these caverns.

The cavern known as Yangleshö is arranged over the Shesh Narayan sanctuary along the street moving toward the Pharping bazar, while the Asura cavern, the site of Ka-Nying Shedrub Ling’s retreat place, is on the edge toward the west of the town. The life stories of Padmasambhava clarify that the ace ruminated for a long time in these caverns, rehearsing the tantric gods Viśuddhaheruka (Tib. yang dag he ru ka) and Vajrakīlaya. In doing as such, he additionally exhibited the achievement of a degree of profound fulfillment known as Mahāmudrā Vidyādhara, the third of four such Vidyādhara levels of accomplishment depicted in Buddhist tantras.

The cavern of Asura is otherwise called ‘Upper Yangleshö’ or ‘the confined withdrawal of Yangleshö,’ as is referenced in The Wish-Fulfilling Tree, a history of Guru Padmasambhava that was uncovered by Chokgyur Lingpa:

In the upper practice cavern of Yangleshö,

So as to achieve the siddhi of the Great Seal,

I played out the act of The Supreme Glorious Heruka.

Impediments happened, incurring torment upon India and Nepal,

Thus I requested that my lords send me lessons techniques to repulse them.

The ambassadors conveyed back the Sublime Knowledge of Kilaya.

By its negligible appearance in Nepal, all impediments were controlled

What’s more, I accomplished the most noteworthy siddhi of the Great Seal.

(The Great Tertön: The Life and Activities of Chokgyur Lingpa, pg. 19)

It is additionally generally accepted that the two caverns are associated through a little passage. Kyabje Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche specifies this in his book Rainbow Painting:

In the deepest openings of the Asura Cave at Pharping in the Kathmandu Valley is a passage that associates this cavern to the Yangleshö Cave down beneath, about a large portion of a mile away. It’s anything but a major opening. Wind goes through this section and you can feel the draft when sitting close to it. In spite of the fact that Padmasambhava could cross uninhibitedly through strong issue, he utilized this tight passage to move between Yangleshö Cave and the upper Asura Cave. At the point when we were reestablishing the cavern a couple of years prior, the guardian found that gap out through which the breeze blew. He stated, “Padmashambhava should have gone through this passage, yet it’s limited to such an extent that lone a rodent or a bug could get past it. Perhaps Padmasambhava was that size!” (Rainbow Painting, pg. 177)

Numerous life stories and uncovered tantras (termas) additionally clarify that Guru Padmasambhava bound after swearing to tell the truth certain common spirits at Asura collapse request that they ensure the Buddhist lessons. The Five Chronicles uncovered by Orgyen Lingpa clarifies how Padmasambhava bound after swearing to tell the truth the twelve defender divinities related with Vajrakilaya. Moreover The Dispeller of Obstacles (hooligans sgrub bar chad kun sel) uncovered by Chokgyur Lingpa is among various writings that makes reference to Asura as where Padmasambhava bound the twelve Tenma goddesses having sworn to tell the truth to ensure the outskirts of Tibet.

Pharping seems to have been frequented by Tibetans all through their movements to Nepal and India spreading over numerous hundreds of years. One of Pharping’s most well known guests was Marpa Lotsawa (1012-1097), whose fifteenth century life story by Tsangnyön Heruka records him going through certain days in the zone performing gaṇacakra pūjās while coming back from his third excursion to India.

The Asura cavern is arranged on an edge around 500 meters above Pharping in the wilderness to its northwest. At the eastern foot of the slope, there is a Vajrayogini sanctuary, one of four Yogini sanctuaries that mark the valley’s four course (the others being Bijeshwari, Purano Guhyeshwari, and Sankhu’s Khadga Yogini). There is a picture of Ganesh and a normally emerged picture of Tara at the base of the western flight of stairs.

The cavern is referred to locally as Gorakhnath (i.e., Gorakṣanātha) after the yogi and powerful originator of the Nath faction of Hindu religion who likely lived in the eleventh century. There is a stone portrayal of his feet, which, as per its engraving, was raised on January eleventh, 1391, when Pharping was a feudatory of the amazing King Jayasthiti Malla. In view of other recorded proof, doubtlessly the love of Gorakṣanātha and individuals from his plain request started spreading in Nepal around this time. References to Gorakṣanātha as a Buddhist are additionally found in records and memoirs of the eighty-four Mahasiddhis of the Vajrayana convention.

The cavern itself contains seven sculptures. There are three sculptures of Guru Padmasambhava as Nangsi Silnön and another of Vajrasattva situated on the cavern highest stage. The principle sculpture is Padmasambhava as Tsokye Dorje. It is said that this sculpture was found in a field and brought to the cavern by a neighborhood Tamang rancher (comparable stories exist for a considerable lot of the pictures in Nepal). To one side and right are sculptures of Vajrakīlaya and Viśuddhaheruka, accepted by some to have been introduced in the cavern before the 1950s by a Tibetan from Kham.

There is likewise an impression on the outside of the cavern close to the passageway. Some state this is the imprint of a manifestation of Situ Rinpoche, some state it is that of Drubwang Tsoknyi II, while others state it is that of Gorakhnath. Some, notwithstanding, out of the quality of their confidence and commitment, feel that it is obviously the impression of Guru Rinpoche.

Along these lines, the caverns of Yangleshö and Asura are both of incredible centrality for the supporters of Guru Padmasambhava. As indicated by His Holiness Dujom Jigdral Yeshe Dorje and others, these caverns are equivalent in hugeness to Bodhgaya for professionals of Vajrayana Buddhism to the extent that being the source and otherworldly focus of their individual customs.

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