Alexander Csoma de Kõrös,
Bodhisattva of the Western World!
Alexander Csoma de Kõrös,
Bodhisattva of the Western World!
Alexander Csoma de Kõrös was searching for the origins of the Hungarians. He received an extraordinary academic education in Germany at one of the leading scientific institutions of his age, the University of Göttingen, and became an internationally acknowledged scholar. He prepared for his long journey by mastering the science of Orientalism at the highest level and by learning several languages. He wanted to find our brothers and sisters who had remained in Asia-the Hungarians, Huns, and Uighurs-in their homeland in distant Central Asia where they are living even today.
He began his journey on foot, without financial means; he tried to enter Central Asia several times, but met with severe obstacles; and he finally reached Ladakh, Western Tibet. There, among the peaks of the Himalayas, in monasteries at an altitude of 4000 to 5000 meters, under difficult circumstances and in great privation, he studied the Tibetan language and learned Buddhist spirituality under the guidance of highly educated lamas and became an advanced practitioner of Buddhism. His memory is still respected in Tibet.
Later, working as a librarian for the Asia Society of Bengal in Calcutta, India, he compiled and published his famous Tibetan-English Dictionary and Tibetan Grammar as well as several essays on different topics of Tibetan Buddhism which were previously unknown to western scholars. Thus, he became a pioneer and founder of the science of Tibetology. For his work which explored Buddhism in the spirit of western science and spread the knowledge of Buddha-dharma worldwide, and for his exemplary and saintly life, he was recognized by Japanese Buddhists as a saint of Buddhism (Sanskrit: bodhisattva) by the name Csoma Bosatsu. The followers of Buddhism all around the world pay tribute to his memory.
At the age of fifty-eight, he set off again towards his main goal: to find the kindred people of the Hungarians. This time, he intended to reach the original homeland of the Hungarians, the land of the Huns, through Tibet where he hoped to find plenty of information about the peoples of Central Asia with whom the advanced Tibetan civilization had close and extensive connections since ancient times (the Tibetans are aware of their kinship with the Scythians). Alexander Csoma de Kõrös had a firm belief in the close relationship of the Scythian, Hun, and Hungarian peoples, and he dedicated his life to proving this beyond any shadow of a doubt. Unfortunately, he could not complete his work. He did not reach Tibet. He became ill at the foothills of the Himalayas and left this earthly existence.
His scholarly activities, however, have remained inspiring and exemplary for the following generations. Numerous enthusiastic researchers followed in his footsteps and traveled to the territories pointed out by him, but they were not able to overcome the obstacles of the natural and political environments for a long time. Only recently, during the end of the last millennium, did significant changes come about. The liberation of Hungary and the Central Asian countries from Russian occupation cleared the way for independent research at last. We did not have to wait long for the results: in 1999, Hungarian and Kazakh researchers visited the Hungarian tribes living in Asia and made their findings public. The existence of these Hungarians had been well-known to the local authorities, but because of political reasons it was kept secret during the centuries of Russian occupation and oppression. Csoma's intuition proved correct-there are Hungarians still living in our ancient homeland in Asia. The work that his mortal body was unable to complete was fulfilled by his immortal spirit. His aspiration lives on in his enthusiastic and tireless followers.
In our age, with the expansion of our world and the rapid flow of information, many false views about our origins have become outdated as well. Today, it is a well-known fact that the Scythian-Hun-Hungarian relationship has been asserted since the very beginning by the ancient traditions and historiographies of the peoples of Eurasia, and this view has been confirmed by the international community of scholars with unquestionable certainty.
He searched for ways to distant countries tracing the roots of Hungarians and found an inner path: he laid open in his own heart the roots of permanent happiness and peace.
"What can we gain by sailing to the moon if we are not able to cross the abyss that separates us from ourselves? This is the most important of all voyages of discovery, and without it, all the rest are not only useless, but disasterous.
- Thomas Merton
"The inner corners of the land of Tartars near China (Inner-Mongolia) are inevitably the places, where the cradles of the Hungarian tribes are to be sought. In these areas the Tibetan language is widely known even among the Mongolian peoples..."
- Alexander Csoma de Kõrös
"The extraordinary qualities of great beings who hide their nature escapes ordinary people like us, despite our best efforts in examining them. On the other hand, even ordinary charlatans are expert at deceiving others by behaving like saints."
- Patrul Rinpoche
He used the most productive years of his life for studying and acquiring the spiritual roots he found in Tibet, the fluorishing citadel of ancient Asian spirituality.
ALEXANDER CSOMA DE KÕRÖS' VISION HAS PROVED TO BE TRUE
Recently, Hungarian and Kazakh scholars exposed the existence of Hungarian tribes in several Central and Inner Asian countries: Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Russia and Uzbegistan. Their Hungarian origin is well documented both by their own tradition and genealogical notes - in which they describe their ancestral lineages dozen's of generations back in time - and by historical descriptions in ancient Central Asian annals sealed secret during the centuries of Russian occupation and presented for research only after the withdrawal of the soviet army. What his mortal body was unable to accomplish, was eventually accomplished by his immortal spirit, which inspired scholars to follow in his footsteps.