[1] 'jig rten gsum. Referring to the worlds of lha ‘gods’ above, klu ‘water spirits’ below, and gnyan ‘worldly deities’ in the middle. This tripartite scheme of a vertically-ordered world is a central theme in most tellings of the Gesar epic. In this text, two or three terms are used to refer to the scheme: ‘jig rten gsum, sa gsum, and srid gsum. The first two we have translated as “Three Worlds” and the last as “Three Realms”, since it could also be interpreted as referring to the Buddhist scheme of Form, Formless, and Formless Realms (more commonly known as as khams gsum).

[2] skyes bu chen po ge sar rdo rje tshe rgyal

[3] sa gsum

[4] de bzhin gshegs pa, tathāgata                   

[5] Sman btsun chen mo rdo rje g.yu sgron ma is one of the bstan ma bcu gnyis, the 12 native goddesses who according to Nyingma lore were converted in the 8th century by Padmasambhava and Pelgyi Senge (dpal gyi seng ge; BDRC P4236) to become protectors of the tantric teachings of the Old School.

[6] 'ol ga

[7] The Victory Star (rgyal skar, puṣya/pauṣa) is one of the twenty-eight stars/constellations (rgyu skar nyi shu rtsa brgyad, aṣtāviṃśati nakṣatrāṇi) in the Indo-Tibetan system of lunar mansions, an ancient Indian division of the ecliptic. In the Tibetan tradition, a period associated with one of these constellations is determined by the moon’s position. If the moon was in the Victory Star at sunrise on a lunar day, that day would be considered to be ruled by that constellation.

[8] lha'i yid bzhin nor bu rin po che

[9] 'bum 'od kyi me tshe

[10] klu (Skt: (nāga) are beings of the world below, associated with water, health, and wealth.

[11] g.yung drung bon

[12] lha ger mtsho gnyan po. The deity ger mtsho, in various spellings, is frequently encountered in tellings of the Gesar epic as the gnyan father of Gesar. Gnyan are a class of powerful worldly deities in Tibetan culture who inhabit the middle world, in which humans also dwell. They are often associated with mountain deities.

[13] yul gling dgu'i skyes 'gro yongs

[14] srid pa'i lha gnyan chen po ger mtsho. See note above.

[15] ne le thod dkar

[16] btsan ya ba skya gcig

[17] zangs thang byang dmar gyi gling and dga' ba lung

[18] 'chims

[19] lha srin

[20] chu bdag pang skyes ma sang

[21] la stod

[22] bdud rje rgyal po

[23] brgya byin (“hundred sacrifices”) is the usual Tibetan name for Indra (also known as Kauśika or Śakra), king of the heaven of the Thirty-Three gods (of the desire realm).

[24] rgya khri sgo khri shing

[25] rgya rje btsan po

[26] bdud zla ba'i gdong can

[27] mi gzhung 

[28] lha mo yid 'phrog

[29] btsan. These are non-human entities of the world characterized in Tibetan culture. They are included in the eight classes (sde brgyad) and are primarily seen as greatly powerful and nefarious beings who inhabit a specified locale.

[30] klu btsan. This name is familiar from many tellings of the Gesar epic in which Lutsen is one of the hero’s main adversaries. In many tellings, he is the Demon of the North, whose beautiful wife waylays Gesar for many years.

[31] yang dag shes

[32] lcang lo can gyi pho brang

[33] rnam thos sras, Vaiśravaṇa

[34] byang phyogs skong ba'i rgyal po chen po

[35] Srin po (or feminine srin mo) are a prominent class of harmful being or demon in Tibetan culture. This is the term used in Tibetan to translate the Sanskrit rākṣasa. They are human-eating and bloodthirsty.

[36] rak+sha glog phreng

[37] klu mo sbal mgo mig khrag ma

[38] khyab 'jug gza'i rgyal po

[39] dbang phyug nag po

[40] gshin rje dmar po 'chi bdag

[41] jag pa me len; srog bdag dmar po; ab se chen po. Among the “other names” alluded to would be beg tse and lcam sring.

[42] lha gnyan lha rje

[43] seng gdong dmar mo

[44] yab shar nag po

[45] zhing skyong seng ge'i gdong chen kun dga' gzhon nu

[46] cig car dmar po

[47] tsa ri tra

[48] a pho chen po

[49] klo gra; hor ga

[50] dgra lha

[51] srid gsum. This could refer to the “three worlds” (worlds above below and in the middle) or to the classical Buddhist scheme of Three Realms (usually known as khams gsum) of the Form, Formless, and Desire Realms.

[52] sho

[53] cho lo

[54] rdo

[55] dbu ru

[56] gser gzhong zings ri

[57] bu ga 'dol ga li'i skye ba

[58] chibs phur gyi ljong shing

[59] lhun po rdza'i mgul

[60] bca' 'bum pa. These areas, Lhunpo Dza and Chabumpa, might be in the area of Lelung, but their exact locations are unknown to the translator and the organisation. Please contact Tib Shelf if you are aware of their whereabouts.

ENDNOTES