14 Facts About Bon

1. Bon remains a significant minority religion in Tibet and the surrounding Himalayan regions.

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2. Early Western studies of Bon relied heavily on Buddhist sources, and used the word to refer to the pre-Buddhist religion over which it was thought Buddhism triumphed.

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3. Yungdrung Bon is a universal religion, although it is mainly limited to Tibetans, with some non-Tibetan converts.

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4. Bon attained Buddhahood several hundred years before Sakyamuni Buddha, in a country west of Tibet, called Olmo Lungring or Tazig, which is difficult to identify and acts as a semi-mythical holy land in Bon (like Shambala).

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5. Bon taught them to substitute offerings with symbolic animal forms made from barley flour.

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6. Bon created the sun and moon, and taught humans religion.

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7. Little is known about the pre-Buddhist religion of ancient Tibet and scholars of Bon disagree on its nature.

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8. Under the Fifth Dalai Lama, Bon was officially recognized as a Tibetan religion.

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9. Bon suffered the same fate as Tibetan Buddhism did during the Chinese Cultural revolution, though their monasteries were allowed to rebuild after 1980.

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10. Present spiritual head of the Bon is Menri Trizin Rinpoche, successor of Lungtok Tenpai Nyima, the thirty-fourth Abbot of Menri Monastery (destroyed in the Cultural Revolution, but now rebuilt), who now presides over Pal Shen-ten Menri Ling in Dolanji in Himachal Pradesh, India.

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11. Bon's leading monastery in India is the refounded Menri Monastery in Dolanji, Himachal Pradesh.

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12. Per Kværne writes that, at first glance, Bon "appear to be nearly indistinguishable from Buddhism with respect to its doctrines, monastic life, rituals, and meditational practices.

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13. Bon includes many rituals and concerns that are not as common in Tibetan Buddhism.

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14. Bon is seen as being a reincarnation of Tonpa Shenrab Miwoche, the legendary founder of Bon.

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