Kalachakra is a system of highest tantra practice for overcoming the limitations imposed by historical, astrological, and biological cycles so as to become a Buddha for the benefit of all. His Holiness the Dalai Lama and other great Tibetan teachers have been conferring the Kalachakra initiation in the West, empowering prepared practitioners to engage in its meditations. Large numbers of people also attend this initiation as interested observers and gain inspiration for their spiritual growth. Introduction to the Kalachakra Initiation explains on a practical level and in everyday language the theory of tantra, the vows, commitments, and their implications, the factors to consider in deciding if one is ready to attend a Kalachakra initiation as a participant, how to visualize during the initiation, and the most important thoughts and feelings for participants and observers at each step of the empowerment. In preparing this guidebook, Alexander Berzin has done a great service to everyone interested in the Kalachakra initiation. It will help people to prepare for the ceremony and understand the essential points of each step of the procedure.
"This reviewer attended a public Kalachakra abhisheka (empowerment) with H.H. the Dalai Lama in 1991 and had limited understanding then of what was taking place. The rite was deeply inspiring, but how much more meaningful the experience might have been had this book been available! Berzin brings his signature blend of erudition and even-handedness to all elements of the Kalachakra world: internal, external, and alternative Kalachakra, vows and their broader significance, and the entire series of empowerments—for which the author offers step-by-step support (including vivid mnemonic techniques for key visualizations). Practical introductory material includes a concise 'spiritual bottom line'-oriented introduction to tantra, an explanation of the role Kalachakra can have in creating world peace. Though rooted in the Gelug tradition of Berzin's principal teachers, the text is a generous orientation to the Kalachakra tradition in all four of Tibet's Buddhist lineages."—Mandala Magazine"Berzin, with the Dalai Lama's blessing, has written a handbook in clear language and specific detail to help people prepare for the initiation and to understand the ceremony. He begins with an explanation of tantra, removing the sensationalism from a practice often presented in the West as a series of sexual activities. He goes on to explain Deity Yoga, tantric training of the imagination, visualization of the world of mandalas, Shambhala receiving, empowerments, and taking vows. This is a book for the serious student of Buddhism, but it is also a book meant to open the door to these advanced practices to a much wider audience. In many ways, it is an invitation to explore Buddhism with a friendly guide. There is a beautiful, peaceful energy that flows through the pages. I think many of your customers will be drawn to the book without even knowing why."— New Age Retailer