As potent as it is pithy, this short text outlines three sets of qualities required respectively by sages, bodhisattvas, and practitioners of the Mantrayāna. There is obvious overlap in the advice contained at each level, particularly ascending from the initial to the final qualities, which mirrors the central training of the three Buddhist vehicles essential to the Tibetan tradition.
Butön Rinchen Drub
This text provides us with an insight into the life of Do Khyentsé Yeshé Dorjé by presenting a concise biography of the master in addition to those of his family. It, moreover, offers stories from the life of his half-sister and spiritual partner, Losal Drölma—an honored teacher in her own right and a figure on the fringe of the Yeshé Dorjé tales told in temples.
This lineage prayer for Do Khyentsé's treasure cycle of the Natural Liberation of Grasping (Dzinpa Rangdröl) is found in a liturgical compilation arranged by Galwang Nyima. The prayer comprises verses from the supplication prayer and Tröma practice as located in the revealed treasure texts as well as a short transmission lineage.
This liturgy for the preliminary practices, or ngöndro (sngon 'gro), of Do Khyentsé's terma revelation Yangsang Khandrö Tuktik, 'The Exceedingly Secret, Enlightened Heart–Essence of the Ḍākinī", includes the common, outer practices of contemplation and the main, inner preliminaries of taking refuge, generating bodhicitta, offering the maṇḍala, purifying obscurations through Vajrasattva, and guru yoga.
Döndor and Tenzin Chödrak
‘Waterfall of Youth’, written in 1983, is a free-verse poem written in Tibetan. The form of the poem is that of a waterfall. As you read down the page, you can see the sometimes gentle, sometimes violent flow as the waterfall of youth visually cascades down the page. The cadence of the lines is also reminiscent of the flow of a waterfall or the current of a river.
The first rendition of the seal was written in 1619 by the First Drukpa Shabdrung, Ngawang Namgyal, after seizing military victory over Püntsok Namgyal, the ruler of Tsang in Tibet. The lines translated here are in a different order in comparison to other editions. Nevertheless, this epic declaration not only helps to establish the emerging country of Bhutan but centralizes Shabdrung's power in a talismanic nature.
Drukpa Shabdrung, Ngawang Namgyal
The Ruby Garland is a genealogy of the Tibetan clans Barchung and Ju, descended from Genghis Khan. It might be the only Tibetan historical document that holds a clear account of Buddhism's existence in Mongolia during the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644). Parallel historical narratives can be found in the official historical records of the Ming Dynasty, the Ming Shi (明史).
This supplication, filled with instruction for the completion stage practice of fierce inner heat, was written by Jigmé Lingpa in his renowned work of The Heart Essence of the Great Expanse, or Longchen Nyingtik. It is traditionally sung after the lineage supplication and before the fierce inner heat practice.
Khyungtrül Pema Trinlé Gyatso, also known as Khyungtrül Kargyam, was a treasure revealer, a highly learned master, and undeniably an important figure in the Rimé movement of the nineteenth century in Kham. Pema Gyurme’s disciple, Khen Orgyen Namgyal, composed this short biographical text, sourcing Khyungtrül’s autobiography and oral account.
Khenpo Tsondru's brief biography of his own teacher Pema Tekchok Loden (1879–1955), alias Khenchen Abu Lhagang, tells how he studied under some of the most illustrious masters of his day before serving as abbot for eight years at the famed monastic college of Dzogchen Śrī Siṃha and then retiring to a nearby cave, focusing on meditative practice.
The Fifth Lelung Rinpoche, Shepé Dorjé (1697–1740), is unusual among senior Geluk figures for having taken a personal interest in the figure of Gesar of Ling, eponymous hero of the Tibetan epic. The text translated here narrates his ‘pure vision’ of Gesar, which took place near his monastic seat at Lelung, in Olga, in 1729. Please see the full abstract in the note section of the translation.
This meditative or spiritual song was composed by Milarepa (1040–1123), Tibet’s most famous yogi and poet. With an almost Wordsworthian rhapsody, Mila describes the inconceivable qualities of Kyangpen Namkhé Dzong and explains why it is so favourable for meditative retreat. Strikingly, he identifies the natural world itself, rather than past Buddhist masters, as the wellspring of blessings for this holy place.
These letters were purchased and are now conserved in a private collection in France. The means of the initial acquisition is unknown. The recipient(s) of the letters are currently unidentified, and their connection with the Thirteenth Dalai Lama is undetermined. We are happy to receive any information concerning these letters.
These introductory biographies of the successive reincarnations of Tsoknyi Öser invite us to the land of liberation by establishing their enlightened lifestyles as examples. The text highlights the significance of devotion towards a spiritual master as, for example, the Third Tsokyni lighting his ring finger on fire, offering it as a lamp to fulfil his guru's aspirations.