The subject for this study, the Tibetan “treasure revealer” Gshen-chen Klu-dga’, is a crucial figure in the development of
Bon as an organised religion after the eleventh century. Here for the first time he is situated in the context of what was happening in Buddhism at the time.
By scrutinizing his life and
gter-ma (“treasures”), that were to be of much controversy in later ages, Dan Martin sheds light on the mechanism of Tibetan polemical tradition and the ways in which sectarianism accords itself legitimacy by resurrecting ancient arguments in a subtly distorted manner.
exhaustive annotated bibliography of previous works about Bon, forming the second part of the work, can rightly be seen as a legacy of Gshen-chen. Both parts taken together make this an indispensable guide to any student of Bon.
Dan Martin, Ph.D. (1991) in Tibetan Studies (Indiana University), is at present a Researcher affiliated with the Department of Indian Studies at the Hebrew University, Jerusalem. His published monographs are
Mandala Cosmogony (Harrassowitz, 1994) and
Tibetan Histories (Serindia, 1997).
”Unearthing Bon Treasures” is an erudite, original, and extremely useful volume, written in a way which renders it accessible to non-specialists. It augurs well for the future study of the Bon religion.' Per Kvaerne,
Indo-Iranian Journal, 2004.
Specialists in Asian History or Religious Studies, and particularly in general Tibetan Studies.