thumb27

Hendrikus Wilhelmus Antonius (Henk) Blezer

1961 –
classical and modern Tibetan, Sanskrit, Vedic, Pali, classical Chinese, Hindi
Tibetology, Buddhist studies, Indology

Curriculum vitae

1961born in Schaesberg on July 14
1979–1983study biology and biochemistry at the Katholieke Universiteit Nijmegen
1983-1984introductory courses in Theology at the Katholieke Universiteit Nijmegen
1984–1985study Japanese Buddhism at the Zen Studies Society in New York, USA
1985–1987interruption: mandatory civil service at a library for the blind, as a conscientious objector to military service
1987–1992Buddhist and Tibetan studies and Vedic Studies (BA and MA), Leiden University
1993–1997PhD research at the CNWS, Leiden University
1997PhD under the supervision of T.E. Vetter, Leiden University
1997–2000postdoc research fellow at the International Institute for Asian Studies (IIAS), Leiden University
2000–2001Jan Gonda fellow at the IIAS, Leiden
2002–2005postdoc research fellow, Leiden University (CNWS/dept. of TCZCA)
2005–2010senior postdoc research fellow, Leiden University (LIAS/ CNWS) ‘The Three Pillars of Bon’ (subsidized by NWO Vidi)
2010–2015Lecturer Buddhist Studies, Leiden University (LIAS)

Special activities and positions

  • Organiser, acting chairman and convenor of the ninth seminar of the IATS (International Association for Tibetan Studies), IIAS Leiden 2000
  • Organiser of a panel at the 11th seminar of the IATS, Bonn 2006
  • Co-organiser lecture series on Tibet, in the Leiden University Studium Generale, April–May 2011
  • Co-organiser of an international symposium on nativism in Buddhist environments, Düsseldorf 2008
  • Co-promotor of Kalsang Norbu Gurung (2005-2011) and Rob Hogendoorn (2005-2012)
  • Member of the editorial board of Brill’s Tibetan Studies Library (with McKay and Ramble)
  • Former founder and editor of the Tibetological Collections & Archives Series in the IIAS Newsletter, 11 contributions
  • Fieldwork amongst refugee Tibetans in Dharamsala, India (Oct 1996–Jan 1997); in Menri monastery Dolanji, India (Aug 1998–Dec 1998); in the Indian and Nepalese Himalayas (Sept–Dec 2005 and Sept–Dec 2008); in West and Central Bhutan (Sept. 2009) and in Menri monastery (Oct–Nov 2000).
  • Collaboration with Geshe Namgyal Nyima Dagkar from Menri (Bonpo) Monastery in Leiden (January–April 1998); with the head teacher of Menri (Bonpo) Monastery, Lopon Trinley Nyima Rinpoche in Leiden (April 2003); with Samten Gyaltsen Karmay in Leiden (Feb–Jul 2005) and with Dan Martin in Leiden (Jul–Sept 2005)

Sources

Publications

1992  “Prāṇa: aspects of theory and evidence for practice in late-brāhmaṇical and early-Upaniṣadic thought.” In: A.W. van den Hoek, D.H.A. Kolff, M.S. Oort (eds), Ritual, state and history in South Asia: essays in honour of J.C. Heesterman, Leiden (Memoirs of the Kern Institute 5), pp. 20-49.
1993  “De eerste leerrede van de Buddha, Het in beweging zetten van het wiel van de leer, Het Dhammacakkappavattana, uit deMahāvagga van het Vinaya-piṭaka”, annotated translation, 30 pp., for Syllabus (course materials) Boeddhisme, Leiden: the Kern Institute.
1994  “Voorstellingen aangaande een ‘Toestand van de Dood’ in Tibetaans Buddhistische Bar do-literatuur”, summarised in “Hoe het is om dood te zijn, de dood belicht op bijeenkomst Vrienden van het Boeddhisme, november 1993.” Saddharma, Tijdschrift over boeddhisme 1994: 19-25.
& M. Baasten (eds), CNWS 1994 Almanak (CNWS 1994 Yearbook), Leiden.
De verheven Dhāraṇī genaamd: het armsieraad van het hoogste overwinnings­banier, introduction with tentative transliteration and translation, Leiden 1993, a summary was published in a limited collector’s edition, with a print on cloth from the original wood-block of the Tibetan prayer-flag, Driehuis, 17 pp.
1997  Kar gling Zhi khro : a Tantric Buddhist concept, Leiden : Research School CNWS (CNWS publications 56) – Also publ. as PhD thesis Leiden University.
“Enkele overwegingen aangaande rNying ma literatuur: gTer ma-tradities bij de ‘Oude Sekte’,” 14 pp., unpublished lecture for Nyingma Centrum Nederland, Amsterdam.
1998  “Some further reflections on Kar gling Zhi khro: a study of sources referred to in Dan Martin’s review of Kar gling Zhi khro: a Tantric Buddhist concept.” Tibet Journal 23: 134-143.
dBal mo nyer bdun skor g‑yung drung bon gyi dpe gzhung las phyogs bsdus byas pa (prepared with dGe bshes Shes rab grags pa, see Osaka 2000), 33 pp.
Translation and editing of two short descriptions of the successive lineages of the lamas of rMon rgyal Monastery, in English and Tibetan; prepared on request of a contemporary scion of the rMon rgyal-lineages, the Kun grol sprul sku, Nam mkha’ dbang rgyal Rin po che, with the learned assistance of the young abbot to be of g‑Yung drung gling Monastery, TAR PRC, g‑Yung drung gling mkhan po, ‘Brug sras, 4 pp.
Translation, re-translation and editing of previous translations of important prayers of Menri Monastery into a prayer book for daily use. Composed on request of the abbot of Menri, sMan ri khri ‘dzin Lung rtogs bstan pa’i nyi ma Rin po che, 29 pp.
“Some thoughts on the Tibetan concepts of Bla or ‘Soul’ ,” a paper composed on request of the abbot of Menri, sMan ri khri ‘dzin Lung rtogs bstan pa’i nyi ma Rin po che, to be used by the abbot for his presentation at The First International Congress on Tibetan Medicine (ICTM), Revealing the art of the medicine Buddha, in Washington DC, November 7–9, 1998. 7 pp.
1999 “Symposium ‘New Horizons in Bon Studies’”, Osaka, Japan, conference report. IIAS Newsletter 20: 15.
“The ninth seminar of the International Association for Tibetan Studies, Leiden, June 24th–30th, 2000, conference announcement.” IIAS Newsletter 19: 14.
Review of: R. Mayer, A scripture of the ancient Tantra collection: The Phur-pa bcu-gnyis, Oxford 1996. IIJ 42: 275–279.
2000 “The ‘Bon’ dBal mo Nyer bdun(/brgyad) and the Buddhist dBang phyug ma Nyer brgyad, a brief comparison.” In: Samten G. Karmay, Yasuhiko Nagano (eds), New Horizons in Bon Studies, Osaka 2000, pp. 117-178. – papers of a symposium August 23rd–27th 1999.
“The ninth seminar of the International Association for Tibetan Studies.” IIAS Newsletter 23: 41.
2001 “Karma gling pa: treasure finder (gTer ston), creative editor (gTer ston?).” In: Frans Hüsken and Dick van der Meij (eds), Reading Asia: new research of Asian studies, Richmond, Surrey, pp. 292-338. – revised edition in East and West 2003.
“Report of the ninth seminar of the International Association for Tibetan Studies, Leiden, June 24th–30th, 2000.” Studia Asiatica I,­2: 37­–42.
“The Bon virtual library project.” IIAS Newsletter 25: 18f. (Tibetological Collections & Archives Series 6).
March: Radio interview by Egbert van Keulen (edited into 15 minutes), BOS Radio (Boeddhistische Omroep Stichting: Buddhist Broadcast, The Netherlands) at the occasion of a visit by the Dalai Lama to the Netherlands.
2002  Editor & A. Zadoks (ass. ed.), Tibet, past and present: Tibetan studies I (PIATS 2000.1: Tibetan Studies: proceedings of the ninth seminar of the International Association for Tibetan Studies, Leiden 2000, June 24th–30th), Leiden 2002 (Brill’s Tibetan studies library 2,1).
Editor & A. Zadoks (ass. ed.), Religion and secular culture in Tibet: Tibetan Studies II, (PIATS 2000.2), Leiden 2002 (Brill’s Tibetan studies library 2,2).
& J. Ardussi (eds), & A. Zadoks (ass. ed.), Impressions of Bhutan and Tibetan art: Tibetan Studies III, (PIATS 2000.3), Leiden 2002 (Brill’s Tibetan studies library 2,3).
Managing ed.; L. Epstein (ed.), Khams pa histories: visions of people, place and authority (PIATS 2000.4), Leiden 2002 (Brill’s Tibetan Studies Library 2,4).
Managing ed.; T. Huber (ed.), Amdo Tibetans in transition: society and culture in the post-Mao era (PIATS 2000.5), Leiden 2002 (Brill’s Tibetan Studies Library 2,5).
Managing ed.; Beckwith, Chr. (ed.), Medieval Tibeto-Burman languages (PIATS 2000.6), Leiden 2002 (Brill’s Tibetan Studies Library 2,6).
Managing ed.; Klimburg-Salter, D., & Allinger, E. (eds.), Buddhist art and Tibetan patronage from the ninth to fourteenth centuries (PIATS 2000.7), Leiden 2002 (Brill’s Tibetan Studies Library 2,7).
Managing ed.; Klieger, P.Chr. (ed.), Tibet, self, and the Tibetan diaspora: voices of difference (PIATS 2000.8), Leiden 2002 (Brill’s Tibetan Studies Library 2,8).
Managing ed.; Buffetrille, K., & Diemberger, H. (eds.), Territory and identity in Tibet and the Himalaya (PIATS 2000.9), Leiden 2002 (Brill’s Tibetan Studies Library 2,9).
Managing ed.; Eimer, H., & Germano, D. (eds.), The many canons of Tibetan Buddhism (PIATS 2000.10), Leiden 2002 (Brill’s Tibetan Studies Library 2,10).
“Introduction: the Bonpo canon,” [and] “Tibetological collection and archives series.” IIAS Newsletter 28: 17.
2003  “Karma Gling pa: treasure finder (gTer sTon), creative editor (gTer sTon?): a preliminary comparison of theMan ngag snying gi dgongs pa rgyal ba’i bka’ zhes bya ba’i rgyud and two Bar do thos grol chen mo-texts.” East and West 52: 311-345. – First version in Reading Asia: New Research in Asian Studies, pp. 292-338, Richmond, Surrey 2001.
Tibet chapter in: Jan Bor & Karel van der Leeuw (red.), Vijfentwintig eeuwen Oosterse filosofie, Amsterdam, pp. 191–271.
2005  “Foreword” to: J.V. Bellezza, Spirit-mediums, sacred mountains and related Bon textual traditions in Upper Tibet: calling down the Gods, Leiden (Brill’s Tibetan Studies Library 8), pp. v–vii.
Translation of dGe spyod ‘phags nor bdun gyi nang tshan skyabs ‘gro’i rnam bshad nyung bsdus rab gsal nyi ‘od ces bya ba bzhugs so (A brief explanation of taking refuge: a subsection of the Seven Noble Jewels of religious practice called the Bright Sunshine), for the sMan ri Slob dpon, to be published for use in the religious community abroad, 20 pp.
Translation of rDzogs chen ‘od gsal gling gi sngon ‘gro’i rim pa (The stages of preliminary practice for the Great Perfection temple of Clear Light) for the sMan ri Slob dpon, to be published for use in the religious community abroad, particularly for Dzogchen Wodseling Temple.
“Tussen de Regels.” contribution to: Rob Hogendoorn, “Westerse wetenschap voor Tibetaanse monniken,” thematic issue Vorm & Leegte 10,2: 42.
September: Radio interview by Fred Gales (edited into 30 minutes): De Middenweg (The Middle Path) BOS ( Boeddhistische Omroep Stichting: Buddhist Broadcast, The Netherlands), Radio 747 AM, on Blezer’s NWO Vidi Research Project The Three Pillars of Bon.
“Openbare colleges Samten Gyaltsen Karmay,” Berichten uit de Academie 1, in Vorm & Leegte 10,2: 9. – announcement Numata visiting fellowship Samten Gyaltsen Karmay, at Leiden University.
2006  “Wie zijn de Tibetaanse Bönpo’s (Who are the Tibetan Bönpos)?”, in Berichten uit de Academie (News from the Academy), quarterly academic forum in Vorm & Leegte 12,1: 9.
2007  “Heaven my blanket, earth my pillow: wherever Rin po che lays his head down to rest is the original place of Bon.” Acta Orientalia 68: 75-112.
“Brief outlook: desiderata in the study of the history of Tibetan medicine.” In: Soundings in Tibetan medicine: anthropological and historical perspectives, PIATS 2003: Tibetan Studies: Proceedings of the International Association for Tibetan Studies, Oxford 2003, Leiden, pp. 427-438.
“Imagining the beyond, beyond imagination.” In: Samten G. Karmay and Jeff Watt (eds), Bon, the magic word: the indigenous religion of Tibet, New York, pp. 180–207.
October: Radio interview by Fred Gales (edited into 30 minutes): De Middenweg (The Middle Path) BOS ( Boeddhistische Omroep Stichting: Buddhist Broadcast, The Netherlands), Radio 747 AM, Droom van een Ideale Staat: Boeddhisme en Koningschap, ‘Staatsvorming’ en Geweld—themareeks over democratie.
September: Radio interview by Fred Gales (edited into 30 minutes): De Middenweg (The Middle Path) BOS ( Boeddhistische Omroep Stichting: Buddhist Broadcast, The Netherlands), Radio 747 AM, Henk Blezer over de Dop-Dop (Henk Blezer on Dop-Dop).
2008  “sTon pa gShen rab: six marriages and many more funerals.” Revue d’Etudes Tibétaines 15: 421-479.
2009  “The silver castle revisited: a few notes”, Acta Orientalia 70: 217–23 (addition to Blezer, “Heaven my blanket …”, 2007).
“A preliminary report on investigations into (Bon nyid) ‘Od gsal- and Zhi khro bar do in earlier (Zhang zhung)sNyan rgyud-literature.” Originally forthcoming in the Proceedings of the eighth seminar of the International Association for Tibetan Studies, held August 25th–31st 1998 in Bloomington Indiana, U.S.A, but meanwhile published in Revue d’Etudes Tibétaines 17: 21–50.
2010  “The two conquests of Zhang zhung and the many Lig-kings of Bon: a structural analysis of the Bon ma nub pa’i gtan tshigs.” In: Anne Chayet (éd.), Edition, éditions: L’écrit au Tibet, évolution et devenir, München (Collectanea Himalayica 3), pp.19–63. – paper read at the international conference on “Publishing and editing: the evolution and future of writing in Tibet,” Paris, France, 29th–31st May, 2008.
“Greatly perfected, in space and time: historicities of the Bon aural transmission from Zhang zhung.” The Tibet Journal 34,3 (2009) – 35,2 (2010) [special issue: Roberto Vitali (ed.), The Earth Ox Papers, the LTWA 2009 proceedings of an international conference on “Tibetan and Himalayan Studies”, for commemoration of 50 years exile, held at Dharamsala, H.P., India, 3rd–5th May, 2009], pp. 71–160.
“William of Ockham, Jan van Gorp and Tibetan studies: some notes on dating the mDo ‘dus.” In: J.-L. Achard (ed.), Études tibétaines en l’honneur d’Anne Chayet, Genève (Hautes Etudes Orientales 49; Extrême-orient 12), pp. 1-50.
“Polderboeddhisme bruist van leven.” bijdrage aan Podium, Trouw, 4 maart 2010, katern 2, p. 38.
“Vage boeddhisten”, lezersbrief, Trouw, 17 februari 2010, katern 2, p. 28.
June: Radio interview by Fred Gales (edited into 30 minutes): De Middenweg (The Middle Path) BOS ( Boeddhistische Omroep Stichting: Buddhist Broadcast, The Netherlands), Radio 5, Henk Blezer over chöd.
2011  Editor of: Emerging Bon: the formation of Bon traditions in Tibet at the turn of the first millennium AD, PIATS 2006: Tibetan Studies: proceedings of the eleventh seminar of the International Association for Tibetan Studies, Königswinter 2006 , Andiast, Switzerland (Beiträge zur Zentralasienforschung 26).
Introduction to: Henk Blezer (ed.), Emerging Bon: the formation of Bon traditions in Tibet at the turn of the first millennium AD, PIATS 2006: Tibetan Studies: proceedings of the eleventh seminar of the International Association for Tibetan Studies, Königswinter 2006 , Andiast, Switzerland (Beiträge zur Zentralasienforschung 26), pp. 7-12.
“In search of the heartland of Bon – Khyung lung dngul mkhar: the silver castle in Garuḍa valley.” In: Henk Blezer (ed.), Emerging Bon: the formation of Bon traditions in Tibet at the turn of the first millennium AD, PIATS 2006: Tibetan Studies: proceedings of the eleventh seminar of the International Association for Tibetan Studies, Königswinter 2006 , Andiast, Switzerland (Beiträge zur Zentralasienforschung 26), pp. 117-163 (excl. bibliography).
“The Bon of Bon: forever old.” In: Henk Blezer (ed.), Emerging Bon: the formation of Bon traditions in Tibet at the turn of the first millennium AD, PIATS 2006: Tibetan Studies: proceedings of the eleventh seminar of the International Association for Tibetan Studies, Königswinter 2006 , Andiast, Switzerland (Beiträge zur Zentralasienforschung 26), pp. 207-247 (excl. bibliography).
“A brief bibliographical key to Zhang Zhung Snyan Rgyud editions with special attention for sources on the early lineage.” Revue d’Etudes Tibétaines 20: 135–203.
April: Radio interview by Fred Gales on the lecture and Studium Generale lecture series mentioned above (edited into 15 minutes): De Middenweg (The Middle Path) BOS (Boeddhistische Omroep Stichting: Buddhist Broadcast, The Netherlands), Radio 5.
2012  “The discourse on the origins of the teachers of past, present and future, Dus gsum ston pa ‘byung khungs kyi mdo.” In: Roberto Vitali (ed.), Studies on the history and literature of Tibet and the Himalaya, based on a paper at the International Conference, Exploring Tibet’s History and Culture, 19th–21st November 2009, Delhi University and the Central University for Tibetan Studies (CUTS), Kathmandu 2012 (extracted from “William of Ockham, etc.”, Paris 2010), pp. 1-29.
“Buddhism in the Netherlands: a brief resume & call for further research”, in 2600 Years of Sambuddhatva: global journey of awakening, The Ministry of Buddhasasana and Religious Affairs, Government of Sri Lanka, Colombo 2012, 25 pp.
“It all happened in Myi yul skyi mthing: a crucial nexus of narratives—the proto-heartland of Bon?” In: Alex McKay and Anna Balikci-Denjongpa (eds), Buddhist Himalaya: studies in religion, history and culture, proceedings of the Golden Jubilee Conference of the Namgyal Institute of Tibetology, Gangtok, Sikkim, October 1st–5th 2008, 3 vols, Gangtok, vol. 1: Tibet and the Himalaya, pp. 157-178.
“‘Light’ on the human body: the coarse physical body and its functions in the aural transmission from Zhang zhung on the six lamps”, paper at ICTAM VII (IASTAM) conference on “Asian medicine: cultivating traditions and the challenges of globalisation”, Inst. of Traditional Medicine Services, Thimphu Bhutan, Sept. 7–11th, 2009. Revue d’Etudes Tibétaines 23: 117–168.
June 9th: Radio interview by Fred Gales on Sterven en Dood in Boeddhisme (Death and Dying in Buddhism) (based in Seminar at Leiden University, edited into 30 minutes): De Middenweg (The Middle Path) BOS ( Boeddhistische Omroep Stichting: Buddhist Broadcast, The Netherlands), Radio 5.
2013  & Mark Teeuwen (eds), Challenging paradigms: Buddhism and nativism: framing identity discourse in Buddhist environments, [papers of an international symposium on ‘nativism’ in Buddhist environments, in EKÔ Haus der Japanischen Kultur, Düsseldorf, September 12th–14th 2008], Leiden: Brill.
& Mark Teeuwen, “Introduction.” In: Ibidem, pp. 1-27.
“The paradox of Bön identity discourse: some thoughts on the rMa Clan and on the manner of bsGrags pa bon, ‘Eternal’ Bön, new treasures, and New Bön.” Chapter in: Ibidem, pp. 123-157
“The world according to the rMa family.” In: Ch. Cüppers, R. Mayer and M.L. Walter (eds), Tibet after empire: culture, society and religion between 850-1000, Proceedings of the seminar held in Lumbini, Nepal, March 2011 (LIRI Seminar Proceedings Series no. 4), Lumbini: Lumbini International Research Institute (LIRI), pp. 1-17.
& K.N. Gurung and S. Rath, “Where to look for the origins of Zhang zhung-related scripts?” In: N.W. Hill, M.J.F. Desjardins (eds), New horizons in Bon studies 3. The Journal of the International Association for Bon Research 1, Montreal: The International Association for Bon Research. 99-174.
“Where to look for the origins of Zhang zhung-related scripts?” In: Hill N.W., Desjardins M.J.F. (eds), New Horizons in Bon Studies 3, The Journal of the International Association for Bon Research no. 1. Montreal: The International Association for Bon Researc, pp. 99-174.
2015  “Notes on an unidentified Thangka of the Black-Cloak Mahākāla.” In: Hannah Havnevik and Charles Ramble (eds), From Bhakti to Bon, Festschrift for Per Kvaerne, Oslo: Novus Press, pp.113–131.

In press, forthcoming, in preparation
Written & forthc.: Henk Blezer (ed.), Emerging religions: breaking the (religious) historical paradigm, Leiden: Brill 2013.
Written & forthc.: “Breaking the paradigm: Tibetan Bon po s and their origin narratives”, chapter in: Henk Blezer (ed.), Emerging religions: breaking the (religious) historical paradigm, 50 single-spaced A4 pages, Leiden: Brill 2013.
In preparation, The three pillars of Bon: doctrine, ‘location’ & founder, vol. I: Doctrine, part I: Antecedents of Bon religion in Tibet and part II: Tibetan texts, presently approx. above 900 pp., Leiden (Brill’s Tibetan Studies Library). – volume I of a series of three.
In preparation, The three pillars of Bon: doctrine, ‘location’ & founder, vol. II: ‘Location’, part I: Location of origin and part II: Apparatus, presently above 400 pp., Leiden (Brill’s Tibetan Studies Library). – volume II of a series of three.