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Since 1979, this review of materials published in English has explored the origins of the secular Shambhala vision of Chogyam Trungpa and the ancient, historical Kingdom of Shambhala in Central Asia .....The human historical levels are of greatest interest.....eurocentric, nationalistic, religious, sectarian, mythical, heroic, legendary, spiritual, conflated, archaeological, primordial, imperial, heavenly versions are all explored ... regions of interest include Eastern Iran (Takzig/Khorasan), Bactra/Kapisa/Sita River, Kashmir/Gilgit (Od'iana) and Mt Kailas (ZangZung)...the notes are statements worth exploring further rather than solid conclusions......internet links are usually provided for deeper explorations...
Current interests include: Bactria/Oxus Region prior to Alexander (from 1500 BC - 300 BC)....the Indo-Iranian-Mithraic traditions of the Bactra/Kapisa regions of Greater Khorasan ...the Arabic/Islamic conquest of the region ...the Mithra-Shiva-Shenlha Odkar-Shiwa Okar and Anahita-Sherab Chamma relationship.....the Sumeria-Persia-Bactria connection....etc.
Malahim, Armageddon, the Mappō Cycle & Kalachakra Prophecies ...The 1,300-year-old hadith, which is a report of the deeds, teachings and sayings of the Prophet Mohammed, refers to the 'horde' flying 80 banners as they take on a Muslim army in the Syrian town of Dabiq. It warns of a 'malahim' - the equivalent to Armageddon in Christian teachings – in which the Muslims ultimately prevail.….
Dilbarjin, the Balḵāb River & the Greek Dioscuri Temple (2500 BC)...Dilbarjin: (2500 BC) A large urban site surrounded by city walls....dominated by a fortified enclosure and citadel (Kala) in the center, and has a vast unfortified urban area to the east and south of the city walls.….
Hephthalites, Tibetans and White Huns (408 - 670 AD) ...Saint-Martin was among the first to suppose that the Hephthalites were descendants of the Yuezhi and had a Tibetan origin....Bernshtam, states that the Hephtalites were shamanists….honoured their own god. “Each morning they came out of their own tents and prayed. Possibly, they honoured the sun."
Chinese Travelers in Bactria, Kapisa and Oḍḍiyāna (400 - 675 AD)... Xuanzang reports that at the time of his visit to Balkh in 630 AD there were about a hundred viharas and 30,000 monks, a large number of stupas and other religious monuments, and that Buddhism was flourishing in Bactria.….
The Takht Bahi Monastery & Early Tantric Buddhism (520 AD) ...Trisong Detsen, Emperor of Tibet, ruled from 755 until 804 AD.......he invited Padmasambhava and various other teachers to come to Tibet to spread Tantric Buddhism... the Tantric Buddhist complex at Takht Bahi in Ghandara, was constructed as early as 520 AD......200 years before Tantric Buddhism entered Tibet….
King Gondophares & the St Thomas Legend (52 AD) ...King Gondophares I took over the Kabul valley and the Punjab and Sindh region area from the Scythian King Azes...….According to one of the legends in the Acts, Thomas was forced to accompany an Indian merchant, Abbanes, to his native place in northwest India, where he found himself in the service of the Indo-Parthian king Gondophares.
Sīta, Sītā, Śīta, Shita, Sita: Daughter of the Earth Goddess Bhūmi ...The Sita of the Ramayana may have been named after a more ancient Vedic goddess Sita, who is mentioned once in the Rigveda as an earth goddess who blesses the land with good crops. In the Vedic era, she was one of the goddesses associated with fertility...Mount Sita Ram is a mountain in the Spin Ghar range south of the Kabul (aka: Sita) River ….
Shukla Yajurveda & the Vedic Age (c. 1500–500 BC)...Yajurveda is the Veda of prose mantras.....a compilation of ritual offering formulas that were said by a priest while an individual performed ritual actions such as those before the yajna fire......The exact century of Yajurveda's composition is unknown, and estimated by scholars to be around 1200 to 1000 BC….The Yajurveda is broadly grouped into two – the "black" (Krishna) Yajurveda and the "white" (Shukla) Yajurveda.
Judaism & Ancient Bactria/Balkh (586 BC) ...Balkh was formerly the stronghold of Jewish settlements in Afghanistan. According to Persian and Muslim traditions, it was founded after the destruction of Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar (586 B.C.E.), who is said to have settled the exiled Jews there.….
Anionic and Anthropomorphic Greco-Bactrian Buddhist Art (250 BC) ..The first Buddha statues were produced in about the 1st or 2nd century AD in Bactria (Afghanistan and northern Pakistan) perhaps as a result of Greek influence….
Charikar (Kapisa) and the Panjshir Valley... Vasubandhu came from the "Kingdom of Shambhala' (approximately, modern Begram, otherwise known as the ancient kingdom of Kapisha, north of Kabul)....Bagram was founded as Alexandria on the Caucasus by Alexander the Great and known in medieval times as Kapisa….
The Pashto Language & Pashtun Origins...French Buddhist Alexandra David-Néel associated Shambhala with Balkh, also offering the Persian Sham-i-Bala, "elevated candle" as an etymology of its name.....In the Pashto language 'candle is Sham' and 'castle/fortress is Kala'….
Darius the Great and the Kabul River (515 BC) ...Darius the Great ..... third Achaemenid king of kings (r. 522-October 486 B.C.)......Darius sent a naval reconnaissance mission down the Kabul River (aka Sita) to the Indus....Scylax, a man of Caryanda....started from the city of Caspatyrus in the land of Pactyïke ….
Sogd to Bactria Migration (4500 BC) ...The migration from Sogd to Bactria, took place about 5000 BC...When the climate was altered by some vast disturbance of nature, the Arians migrated…. Sogdiana is "listed" as the second of the "good lands and countries" ... second after Airyanem Vaejah, "homeland of the Aryans".
The Palola Shahi Dynasty (6–8th C. AD) ...In the 6th–8th C. AD, the Patola (Palola) Shahis ruled the country of Bolor, in what today is in the area of Gilgit-Baltistan….The people of this region have historically been referred to as Balawars (or highlanders), which is said to have come from the term BALA, which means high.....Before the invasion of Tibetans in 727, the official language of both the Palola Shahis and the clergy was Brahmi..."
The Vidyādharas of Uddiyana & Kashmir...Vidyadhara: someone who constantly abides in the state of pure awareness of 'rigpa’. .... ….
Gilgit Manuscript (5th C. AD) ...The Gilgit Manuscript contains references to iconometry, folk tales, philosophy and culinary skills. It also has a chronological list of the various Buddhist Shahi kings of Gilgit.….Kanishka was a Kushan of probable Yuezhi ethnicity. He used an Eastern Iranian, Indo-European language known as Bactrian (called "αρια," i. e. "Aryan" in the Rabatak inscription)"
Marco Polo: Uddiyana & Kashmir (1280 AD) ...From Homurz to Kerman, passing Herat, Balkh, they arrived Badakhshan, where Marco Polo convalesced from an illness and stayed there for a year........in about the year 1280 AD Marco Polo went from Balkh in Afghanistan near the present day Mazari Sharif, crossed Badakhshan, ascended the Oxus or Amu Dariya River to the Wakhan Corridor....In the thirteenth century Marco Polo wrote that, "The people of Pashai (i.e., Uddiyana) are Great Adepts in sorceries and the diabolic arts. ….
King Sophagasenus & The Kapisa Valley (206 BC) ... Sophagasenos also spelt Sophagasenus or Sophagasenas (Sanskrit: Subhagasena) was a local King ruling in Kabul and Kapisa valley (Paropamisade of the classical writings) during the last decade of 3rd century BC...Polybius, the Greek historian, makes reference to Sophagasenus in context with Antiochus III’s expedition across the Caucasus Indicus (Hindu Kush Mountains) in around 206 BC. Having crossed the Caucasus Mountains, Antiochus moved up to Kabul and met Sophagasenus the King with whom he renewed league and friendship he had made previously.....
Uddiyana Kurukulla & Vashya-Karma Magic... One Buddhist Dakini originating from the country of Uddiyana is the goddess Kurukulla. The name Kurukulla is translated into Tibetan as Rigjyedma (rig-byed-ma), “she who is the cause knowledge.” She is associated with a king of Uddiyana named Indrabhuti...... there exists a sadhana text attributed to him for the red Kurukulla......she is generally known as the Uddiyana Kurukulla. ….
Gendün Chöphel (1903–1951) & the White Annals ...The White Annals - an unfinished work on the early history of Tibet by Gendün Chöpel….Gendun Chopel is revered as Tibet's greatest modern poet......He published articles questioning traditional Tibetan views on history, world geography, and the origin of Tibetan writing..... He became a target for ecclesiastical extremists and conservative nobles. He was arrested, whipped, and thrown into prison at the foot of the Potala Palace. His research materials written during twelve years of exile in India were stolen and never returned.
Buddhagupta-natha & Dumasthira, Oddiana (1580 AD) ... Buddhaguptanatha (1514-1610)...locates Urgyan (Uddyana) in Ghazni, about 50 miles south of Kabul in modern Afghanistan, which is in contrast with the traditional location of Urgyan in the Swat area......Tāranātha (1575–1634) gives a detailed description of the country and Dumasthira, the capital city of Uddyana....the focal location of the magic dakini women.….
Kushan Empire Mint Cities...The Mint Cities of the Kushan Empire: Balkh, Surkh Khotal, Kapisa (Begram), Peshawar (Puskavalait), Taxila, Kanishakapura, Sagala (Sialkot), Mathura….
The Pāratas & King Yolamira (125 AD) ...The Pāratas, an Iranian people and ruling dynasty from what is now western Pakistan, are known essentially through their coinage, which typically exhibit the bust of a particular monarch on the obverse ( having long hair within a headband), and a swastika within a circular legend on the reverse….The swastika mark is not encountered on Kushan coins, but it is an element on Kushanshah coins