The Life of Shabkar has long been recognized by Tibetans as one of the masterworks of their religious heritage. Shabkar Tsogdruk Rangdrol devoted himself to many years of meditation in solitary retreat after his inspired youth and early training in the province of Amdo under the guidance of several extraordinary Buddhist masters. With determination and courage, he mastered the highest and most esoteric practices of the Tibetan tradition of the Great Perfection. He then wandered far and wide over the Himalayan region expressing his realization. Shabkar's autobiography vividly reflects the values and visionary imagery of Tibetan Buddhism, as well as the social and cultural life of early nineteenth-century Tibet.
"In many ways, the best guide to the Dzogchen teachings. Includes explanations of texts that were previously thought too secret to publish."—Tricycle
"Contains clear translations and detailed commentaries. Careful study and practice of the knowledge revealed in The Golden Letters is indispensable."—The Mirror
"Many of the meditative practices this book introduces are among the most profound ever to appear in published form."—Shambhala Sun
The teachings of Dzogchen, which directly introduces the practitioner to the Nature of Mind, were first expounded by Garab Dorje in the country of Uddiyana and later went to India and Tibet. The essence of Garab Dorje's message is "The Three Statements that Strike the Essential Points." Patrul Rinpoche wrote a brilliant commentary, together with practices entitled "The Special Teaching of the Wise and Glorious King"—here translated with notes, commentaries, and a glossary of terms.
In the Nyingma School of Tibetan Buddhism, the Great Perfection is considered the most profound and direct path to enlightenment. The instructions of this tradition present a spiritual shortcut—a radically direct approach that cuts through confusion and lays bare the mind's true nature of luminous purity. For centuries, these teachings have been taught and practiced in secret by some of the greatest adepts of the Buddhist tradition. Great Perfection: Outer and Inner Preliminaries contains detailed instructions on the foundational practices of this tradition, from "The Excellent Chariot," a practice manual compiled by the Third Dzogchen Rinpoche.
Distilling the teachings of the Heart Essence of the Dakinis into an accessible, easy-to-practice format, The Excellent Chariot leads the reader through the entire Buddhist path, starting with basic Buddhist contemplations that work to dislodge deeply ingrained patterns of thinking and behaving, and continuing on to the most advanced and secret meditative practices of the Great Perfection. The teachings in this volume are drawn largely from the writings of the great Nyingma master Longchenpa and the root texts of the Heart Essence of the Dakinis itself. The Third Dzogchen Rinpoche begins by discussing the correct way to study and practice the Great Perfection teachings before presenting an overview of the Great Perfection lineage and an explanation on the meaning and importance of empowerment. In the chapters that follow, he presents practical instructions on the outer and inner preliminaries, the so-called "ng�o" practices. These practices enable the practitioner to transform and purify the mind, preparing it for the advanced Great Perfection meditation of Trekch�d T�, the breakthrough and direct leap.
In addition to the translation mentioned above, Great Perfection: Outer and Inner Preliminaries contains a beautiful introduction by the Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche, a contemporary Great Perfection master, and an extensive glossary of key Great Perfection terminology.
What would be the practical implications of caring more about others than about yourself? This is the radical theme of this extraordinary set of instructions, a training manual composed in the fourteenth century by the Buddhist hermit Ngulchu Thogme, here explained in detail by one of the great Tibetan Buddhist masters of the twentieth century, Dilgo Khyentse.
In the Mahayana tradition, those who have the courage to undertake the profound change of attitude required to develop true compassion are called bodhisattvas. Their great resolve—to consider others’ needs as paramount, and thus to attain enlightenment for the sake of all living creatures—carries them beyond the limits imposed by the illusions of “I” and “mine,” culminating in the direct realization of reality, transcending dualistic notions of self and other.
This classic text presents ways that we can work with our own hearts and minds, starting wherever we find ourselves now, to unravel our small-minded preoccupations and discover our own potential for compassion, love, and wisdom. Many generations of Buddhist practitioners have been inspired by these teachings, and the great masters of all traditions have written numerous commentaries. Dilgo Khyentse’s commentary is probably his most extensive recorded teaching on Mahayana practice.
The original text, beautifully translated and introduced by Sara Harding, is further brought to life by an in-depth commentary by the contemporary master Thrangu Rinpoche. Key Tibetan Buddhist fundamentals are quickly made clear, so that the reader may confidently enter into tantra's oft-misunderstood "creation" and "completion" stages.
In the creation stage, practitioners visualize themselves in the form of buddhas and other enlightened beings in order to break down their ordinary concepts of themselves and the world around them. This meditation practice prepares the mind for engaging in the completion stage, where one has a direct encounter with the ultimate nature of mind and reality.
The first Tibetan to attain complete enlightenment was in all probability the woman Yeshe Tsogyal, the closest disciple of Padmasambhava, the master who brought Buddhism to Tibet in the eighth century. This classical text is not only a biography but also an inspiring example of how the Buddha's teaching can be put into practice. Lady of the Lotus-Born interweaves profound Buddhist teachings with a colorful narrative that includes episodes of adventure, court intrigue, and personal searching. The book will appeal to students of Tibetan Buddhism and readers interested in the role of women in Buddhism and world religions.
The first Lawudo Lama portrayed, Lama Kunzang Yeshe (1864-1946), was a yogi of the Nyingma lineage who spent much of his life meditating in a cave near Lawudo, and his life is reconstructed through meticulous research of written and oral histories. The second story is of Kunzang Yeshe's reincarnation, a monk of the Gelug lineage known as Lama Zopa Rinpoche, whose story is given in a first-person narrative. Lama Zopa is well known in the West as the author of several books and as the Spritual Director of the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT), which has more than 100 affiliate Buddhist centers worldwide. Lama Zopa Rinpoche travels and teaches extensively to large audiences and has thousands of students.
The Lawudo Lama will appeal to travelers to Nepal, to Buddhist practitioners, and to scholars trying to understand the culture of the region. It is well documented, and is accompanied by more than 125 color and black and white photos, drawings, lineage charts, and maps.