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abra - local type
of mouse-hare or prairie dog.
Rinchen Pungpa - Mount Abum; situated eight hours'
drive on dirt roads from Sharda in Nangchen. The mountain where
Dechen Ling is situated.
accomplishment - realization;
signs of accomplishment include clairvoyant abilities, miraculous
powers, and the inner heat of tummo .
Achen - the highly respected
prince of Nangchen, whose life was saved as an infant by Samten
Gyatso. He was alive into the late 1980s, in spite of having spent
many years in prison camps.
Rinpoche - guru of the Nangchen kings whose monastery,
Tsechu, is located next to the former royal palace.
Adzom Drukpa (1842-1924)
- Drodul Pawo Dorje; one of the great Dzogchen masters of the early
part of the twentieth Century, a terton and a disciple both of Jamyang
Khyentse Wangpo and Paltrul Rinpoche.
all-ground - alaya,
a sentient being's basic state of mind; 'expanse of the all-ground'
refers to the vastness of basic being.
amban - Chinese
ambassador in Lhasa.
Amdo - one of the provinces
Amnye - region of East Tibet.
amrita - nectar
of immortality; drink of the gods; tantric rituals often use blessed
liquor or fruit juice.
Angi Tendar - yogi from Nangchen;
disciple of the first Tsoknyi.
Anu Yoga - second of the three inner tantras corresponding
to the eighth of the nine vehicles; emphasizes knowledge (prajna
) rather than means (upaya ) and the completion stage
rather than the development stage. The view of Anu Yoga is that
liberation is attained through growing accustomed to the insight
into the nondual nature of space and wisdom.
Argong - see Ngaktrin of
arhats, sixteen - disciples
of the Buddha who vowed to preserve the Dharma until the coming
of Maitreya, the future awakened one.
Armor Against Darkness
- Munpey Gocha; commentary on Anu
Yoga in more than 1,400 pages by Sangye Yeshe of Nub, according
to an original tantra known as the Scripture of the Great Assemblage.
The Armor has since been published in Delhi, India, as
part of Dudjom Rinpoche's monumental publishing effort to preserve
the early teachings of the Nyingma school. It is in volume 50-51
of his Nyingma Kahma edition.
or Asura Cave - sacred place where the Lotus-Born master
subdued the evil forces of afflicting negative conditions on Nepal
through the practice of Vajra Kilaya and manifested the Mahamudra
Vidyadhara level. Situated near Pharping in the Kathmandu valley.
Ati or Ati
Yoga - third of the three inner tantras; emphasizes,
according to Jamgon Kongtrul the First, the view that liberation
is attained through growing accustomed to insight into the nature
of primordial enlightenment, free from accepting and rejecting,
hope and fear. The more common word for Ati Yoga nowadays is 'Dzogchen,'
the Great Perfection.
- great Indian master who visited Tibet; from him springs the Kadampa
and then the Gelugpa lineages.
Avalokiteshvara - bodhisattva
of compassion, often depicted with four arms.
Banyak Ating - Rai Bahadur
Burmiok Athing (1902-1988), chief minister of Sikkim and benefactor
of Tulku Urgyen.
bardo - intermediate
state between death and the next rebirth.
Barom Kagyu lineage - begins
with Dharma Wangchuk of Barom, a disciple of Gampopa.
Barwey Dorje/Barway Dorje
- master based in Raktrul Monastery in Sharda, Nangchen. Present
incarnation (third) is Bardor Tulku Rinpoche, living in the USA.
His spiritual biography, Precious Essence, is recently
published from KTD in Woodstock, NY.
basic nature of reality -
dharmata; unformed and unconditioned nature of things which
can be realized in personal experience.
Black Crown ceremony - ritual
of 'liberation through seeing' during which the Karmapa wears the
crown exclusively worn by the Gyalwang Karmapas.
Black Vajra Yogini - important
Bodhgaya - site where Lord
Buddha attained complete enlightenment situated in Bihar, India.
bodhisattva vow - pledge
to bring every sentient being to liberation and enlightenment.
Bomta Khenpo - (Polo Khenpo
Dorje), disciple of Khenpo Ngakchung.
Bonpo - religion prevalent
in Tibet before the establishment of Buddhism in the 9th Century.
Boudha; Boudhanath - location
of the Great Stupa in the Kathmandu Valley.
Brahma realm - celestial
world of the god Brahma within the Realms of Form.
buddha activity - activity
of an enlightened one to influence other beings and guide them to
liberation and enlightenment.
Shakyamuni - the historical Buddha, regarded as the
chief teacher of our present age.
Buddha - enlightened or awakened
one who has completely abandoned all obscurations and perfected
every good quality. A perfected bodhisattva after attaining true
and complete enlightenment is known as a buddha. The Buddha generally
referred to is Shakyamuni Buddha, the buddha of this era, who lived
in India around the 6th century B.C. There have been innumerable
buddhas in past eons who manifested the way to enlightenment. In
the current Good Aeon - from the beginning to the end of
human beings - there will be one thousand buddhas of which
Buddha Shakyamuni is the fourth.
buddhafield - see pure lands
Buddhaguhya - renowned Indian
master who visited Mount Kailash at the time of King Trisong Deutsen
and transmitted the Guhyagarbha tantra to the Tibetan translator
Jnana Kumara of Nyag.
buddhahood - state of true
and complete enlightenment, endowed with the ability to benefit
countless other beings.
Bumtang Valley - sacred valley
in mid-Eastern Bhutan, traditional home to the master Pema Lingpa.
Calling the Guru from Afar
- famous devotional chant written by Jamgon Kongtrul.
Chakrasamvara - main yidam
deity and tantra of the New Schools.
Chamdo - province south of
Nangchen, presently included within the Tibet Autonomous Region.
Chandali, the Mother of Longevity
- consort of Buddha Amitayus; in Blazing Splendor a mind
treasure of the first Khyentse, Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo.
chang - Tibetan
beer brewed primarily from barley.
Chanting the Names of Manjushri
- Manjushri Nama Sangirti Expressed in Songs of Praise. A tantra
in six hundred verses belonging to Kriya Yoga known to all Tibetan
Buddhists as Jampal Tsenjo. It is text number 424 in the
Tsamdrag edition of Collected Nyingma Tantras (Nyingma Gybum).
Translated as Chanting the Names of Manjushri, A. Wayman,
- see Heart Essence of Chetsun.
Senge Wangchuk (11th-12th cent.) - great master of
the Nyingma lineage. As a result of his high level of realization,
his physical body disappeared in rainbow light at the time of death.
See also Heart Essence of Chetsun.
Dorje (1884-1948?) - Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's father
and an adept Cho practitioner.
chinghu - religious
dignity which is one rank below goshir but still higher
than a wang. See also tishi .
Chini Lama - lama of Chinese
descent who was the custodian of the Great Stupa of Boudhanath.
Chogyal Dorje - the first
Chogyal Pakpa (1235-1280)
- Sakya master and nephew of Sakya Pandita; ruled Tibet and was
preceptor to the Mongolian Kublai Khan.
Lingpa (1829-1870) - important revealer of hidden treasure
from Padmasambhava; Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's great-grandfather.
of Tsikey - Tsikey Chokling; the incarnations of Chokgyur
Lingpa residing at Tsikey monastery. Presently there are two, one
in Boudhanath, Nepal and one in Tsikey monastery, Tibet.
Chokling - short for Chokgyur
Lingpa; see also Chokling of Tsikey, Chokling of Neten.
Nyima Rinpoche - oldest son of Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche,
and abbot of Ka-Nying Shedrub Ling Monastery in Boudha, Nepal.
- terma revealed by Chokgyur Lingpa related to the protectors of
Cho - The practice
of cutting through attachment to body and ego. See also Machik's
Complete Explanation: Clarifying the Meaning of Chod by Sarah
Harding, Snow Lion Publications.
Chowang Tulku - Tulku Urgyen
Rinpoche's immediate former life.
chuba - traditional
Tibetan dress used by lay people for both men and women, but with
different style and folds.
cognitive obscuration - most
subtle veil that covers our buddha nature; consists of holding notions
of subject, object and interaction. See also emotional obscuration.
collapse of delusion - disappearance
of erroneous ideas and concepts; rather than saying that someone
"attained realization" the phrase shows realization's the real nature
- that something extraneous has vanished, just like when the sun
is cleared from clouds.
Collected Nyingma Tantras
- Nyingma Gyubum; Literally the One Hundred Thousand Nyingma
Tantras. The website for The Collected Tantras of the Ancients
at Virginia University lists around 388 different titles.
composure - state of meditation
or equanimity; often opposed to post-meditation, the state of involvement
in daily activities.
Dabzang Rinpoche (?-1992)
- Dilyak Dabzang; master at Dilyak monastery in Nangchen and an
emanation of Gampopa. The late Dabzang Rinpoche counted Kyungtrul
Kargyam as one of his main teachers.
Dagger of the Sevenfold Profundity
- Zabdun Purpa, belongs to the cycle of Kilaya, which is one of
the seven sets of revelations among the Sevenfold Profundity,
a terma treasure revealed by Chokgyur Lingpa. "Dagger" stands for
Kilaya. This practice was also performed at Tsurphu.
dakini script - code script,
symbolic script or writing used by the dakinis.
dakini - goddess
or female tantric deities who protect and serve the tantric doctrine.
Dakpo Kagyu - synonym for
the Kagyu lineages, since Gampopa became known as the master from
Darma Wangchuk - Gampopa's
disciple who founded the Barom monastery in northern Lato and who
is regarded as the father of the lineage. The Barom ('Ba-rom) Kagyu
was founded by Barom Darma Wangchuk. He built Barom monastery, from
which the tradition took its name.
Dartsedo - Chinese name:Ta-Chien-Lu/
Kangding; the old border town between Kham and China.
Ling - hermitage where Chimey Dorje spent half his
Denkhog - district located
in the Derge province.
Depuk Rinpoche - master from
south-western Tibet; built a monastery in Solu Khumbhu, Nepal.
Derge - large independent
kingdom in Kham that used to occupy the present-day counties of
Jomda, Derge, Palyul, and Sershul.
development and completion
- two main aspects of Vajrayana practice; development stage means
positive mental fabrication while completion stage means resting
in the unfabricated nature of mind.
Deypa Tulku - one of Chokgyur
Lingpa's four close disciples who spread his teachings in eastern
Dezhin Shekpa (1384-1415)
- the fifth Karmapa, who performed numerous miracles in China and
was given the famous black crown by Emperor Yunglo (Yongle) after
converting him to Buddhism.
Dharma protector - nonhumans
who vow to protect and guard the teachings of the Buddha and its
followers; can be either 'mundane' i.e. virtuous samsaric beings
or 'wisdom protectors' who are emanations of buddhas or bodhisattvas.
Dharmadhatu - realm of phenomena;
the suchness in which emptiness and dependent origination are inseparable;
nature of mind and phenomena that lies beyond arising, dwelling
dharmakaya - see kayas.
Dharmaraja - religious rulers,
Dharma - teaching of the
Khyentse (1910-1991) - one the five immediate re-embodiments
of Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo. Regarded by followers of all four schools
as one of the foremost recent masters of Tibetan Buddhism. In the
early days of his life, Tulku Urgyen first knew him as Tulku Salgah
or Rabsel Dawa.
Dilyak Drubpon (1908-1963)
- accomplished meditator who completed numerous three year retreats
at Dilyak monastery; retreat master at Tsurphu.
Dilyak monastery - Dabzang
Rinpoche's monastery in Nangchen, founded by the first Dabzang Rinpoche.
Drag Yerpa - One of five
sacred places blessed by Padmasambhava. Situated 30 km north-east
of Lhasa, it is famous for caves used for meditation by the Lotus-Born
master and his consort Yeshe Tsogyal, as well as by the 10th century
Drakda - birthplace of Tulku
Urgyen Rinpoche near the Life-Lake of Yeshe Tsogyal (Tsogyal Lhatso),
situated at Drakda some 20 km from Samye.
drasho - rank of government
official in Bhutan.
Drepung - one of the three
major Gelukpa monasteries around Lhasa.
Drigung - major branch of
the Kagyu lineage, founded by Kyobpa Jigten Sumgon (1143-1217),
a disciple of Phamo Drupa.
Droma - a sweet root used
as a delicacy; sweet potato of Tibet.
Drong Gompa - the monastery
of Lama Tendzin Dorje, Chokyi Nyima's previous life - which is situated
several days' journey north of Lhasa on the route to Kham through
Nakchukha. Drong means wild yak. Other names includes Drong-ngur,
Dronyer - an attendant in
charge of receiving guests.
Drowo - Valley of Birches,
residence of Marpa the Translator, presently in Lhodrak county in
southern Tibet. Read more.
drubchen - "great accomplishment
practice"; an elaborate tantric practice undertaken by a group of
people which goes on uninterruptedly for seven days.
drubdra - the "practice center"
where the traditional three-year retreat takes place.
Sang-Ngak Choling - The seat of the Drukchen Jamgon.
Literally, the "Dharma Garden of Secret Mantrayana" at Jar in southern
Tibet was built by the fourth Drukchen, Pema Karpo (1527-1592) who
transferred the seat of the Drukpa Order to this place.
Drukchen - respectfully referred
to as the Drukchen Jamgon. His monastery's name is Druk Sang-Ngak
Choling. The Drukchen incarnation in residence at Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche
early childhood was Mipham Chokyi Wangpo (1884-1930) whose principal
guru was the great siddha, Drubwang Shakya Shri.
Drukpa Kagyu - The Kagyu
teachings transmitted from Gampopa through Phamo
Drubpa to Lingje Repa.
Drukpa Yongdzin Rinpoche
- a prominent Drukpa Kagyu master of Central Tibet.
Rinpoche (1904-1987) - incarnation of the great treasure
revealer Dudjom Lingpa. He was the supreme head of the Nyingma lineage
after exile from Tibet and is regarded as one of the most prominent
scholars of our time.
Dudul - Samten Gyatso's attendant
and Tulku Urgyen's childhood friend.
dur - ritual performed after
someone's death to disengage certain spirits from the vital energy
of the deceased which otherwise can slow down or create obstacles
to liberation in the bardo.
duruka - negative influences
mentioned in old prophecies as three kinds: invading armies, infectious
diseases, and material substances.
Dusolma - protector; a female
guardian protector of the Buddhist teachings.
Dusum Khyenpa (1110-1193)
- first Karmapa and disciple of Gampopa.
Dzigar Kongtrul - one of
the main an incarnations of Jamgon Kongtrul the first. His present
tulku is the youngest son of Neten Chokling.
Dzogchen - Also known as
Great Perfection and Ati Yoga. The highest teachings of the Nyingma
School of the Early Translations. The early lineage masters include
Garab Dorje, Manjushrimitra, Shri Singha, Jnanasutra, Vimalamitra,
Padmasambhava and Vairotsana. Numerous Dzogchen teachings were concealed
as termas treasures by these masters and revealed through the following
centuries. These teachings are embodied in the oral instructions
one receives personally from a qualified master.
Khyentse (1893-1959) - Jamyang Khyentse Chokyi Lodro
of Dzongsar monastery; one of the five immediate reincarnations
of Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo. He upheld the Rimey (nonsectarian) tradition,
and was one of the two main root gurus of Dilgo Khyentse.
Dzongsar monastery - the
seat of Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo in Derge county, home of the famous
Buddhist college and subsequently the seat of the successor, Dzongsar
Khyentse Chokyi Lodro.
Dzongsho - also Sugata Assemblage
of Dzongsho, the sacred place of hidden qualities where Chokgyur
Lingpa revealed implements belonging to the master Padmasambhava,
the abbot Shantarakshita and the king Trisong Deutsen. The great
terton also revealed a guidebook explaining the lay-out and benefits
of practicing there.
earth terma - A revelation
based on physical substance, often in the form of dakini script,
a vajra, a statue, etc. See also 'mind terma.'
egolessness - the fact that
the seemingly real identity in a person or phenomenon cannot be
found to be of a permanent, partless and independent nature.
eight classes of spirits
- the sutras mention: devas, nagas, yakshas, gandharvas, asuras,
garudas, kinnaras, and mahoragas. All of them were able to receive
and practice the teachings of the Buddha. These eight classes can
also refer to various types of mundane spirits who can cause either
help or harm, but remain invisible to normal human beings: ging,
mara, tsen, yaksha, raksha, mamo, rahula, and naga. On a subtle
level, they are regarded as the impure manifestation of the eight
types of consciousness.
- eight wrathful manifestations of the eight main bodhisattvas.
They symbolize the transformation of the eight consciousnesses.
Sadhana Teachings - Eight Commands; eight chief
yidam deities of Mahayoga and their corresponding tantras and sadhanas:
Manjushri Body, Lotus Speech, Vishuddha Mind, Nectar Quality, Kilaya
Activity, Liberating Sorcery of Mother Deities, Maledictory Fierce
Mantra, and Mundane Worship.
Eighteen Mahayoga Tantras
- eighteen important scriptures translated into Tibetan during the
time of the king Trisong Deutsen.
emanation basis - the enlightened
being in a buddhafield who emanates or 'incarnates' into the world.
emanation - a magical creation
or divinely manifested rebirth of a buddha or past enlightened master.
Embodiment of Realization
- (Tukdrub Gongpa Kundu) A terma treasure revealed by Chokgyur Lingpa
that combines all levels of guru sadhana.
empowerment for the play of awareness
- The empowerment for practicing Dzogchen or Mahamudra. Sometimes
it also refers to a stage of realization achieved through Dzogchen
empowerment - The conferring
of power or authorization to practice the Vajrayana teachings, the
indispensable entrance door to tantric practice. Empowerment gives
control over one's innate vajra body, vajra speech and vajra mind
and the authority to regard forms as deity, sounds as mantra and
thoughts as wisdom.
emptiness - The fact that
phenomena and the ego are empty of, or lack, independent true existence.
entrustment - for instance
to the life force of Tseringma; a short empowerment ritual, usually
for receiving the blessings of the body, speech and mind of the
eruption test - a local spirit
may challenge the yogi's stability in meditation by creating magical
apparitions of varying degrees of intensity.
Essence Manual of Oral Instruction
- (Sheldam Nyingjang Yishin Norbu) the first volume of Chokgyur
Lingpa's New Treasures and the major scripture in the Tukdrub
Barchey Kunsel cycle. Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche regarded this
important text as being a tantra in itself.
essence, nature, and capacity
- The three aspects buddha nature according to the Dzogchen system.
Essence is the primordially pure wisdom of emptiness. The nature
is the spontaneously present wisdom of cognizance. The capacity
is the all-pervasive wisdom of indivisibility. This is, ultimately,
the identity of the Three Roots, the Three Jewels and the three
evil influence - the influence
of mischievous spirits that can cause misfortune and/or disease.
exhaustion of concepts and phenomena
- the fourth of four levels of realization in Dzogchen practice.
To quote Tsele Natsok Rangdrol: "the body, experiences, sense faculties
and all thought forms become exhausted, so there is no way one can
avoid attaining enlightenment and dissolving into the space of dharmata
beyond thought and description."
five sciences - language;
dialectics; science of medicine; science of arts and crafts; religious
Fortress Peak - Dzong-Go
Ling, the lofty hermitage of Samten Gyatso and Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche
administrated by Lachab monastery, which lies one day's horse ride
away. In recent years it has been rebuilt by the incarnation of
Four Branches of Heart Essence,
the - (Nyingtig Yabzhi), one of the most famous collections
of Dzogchen scriptures, in which Longchenpa combined the streams
of teachings from Padmasambhava and Vimalamitra together with his
own mind treasures.
four levels of Dzogchen and Mahamudra
- four visions in Dzogchen practice: dharmata in actuality, increase
in experience, culmination of awareness and exhaustion of phenomena.
Four stages in Mahamudra practice: one-pointedness, simplicity,
one taste, and nonmeditation.
four mind-changings - The
reflections of the four mind-changings cover the topics of precious
human body, impermanence, karma and samsaric suffering. These contemplations
are like loosening up the hard soil and preparing a field to be
fertile and ready to grow the seeds of enlightenment.
four modes and six limits
- The indispensable keys for unlocking the meaning of the tantras.
The four modes are the literal, general, hidden, and the ultimate.
The six limits are the views of the expedient and definitive meaning,
the implied and the not implied, the literal and the not literal.
Four-Armed Mahakala - guardian
protector of the teachings.
Ga Lotsawa - great siddha
and translator who visited India; also known as Palchen Galo ['Galo'
is an abbreviation of Ga Lotsawa, or "the translator of the Ga clan"].
He stayed at Nalanda monastery and meditated in the Cool Grove Charnel
Ground, where he had a vision of a wisdom-protector and received
Galo - see Ga Lotsawa.
Gampo or Dakla Gampo - the
mountain where Gampopa lived, in the southeastern part of Central
(1079-1153) - forefather of all the Kagyu lineages; foremost disciple
of Milarepa who possessed both supreme realization and great scholarship.
He was the author of The Jewel Ornament of Liberation.
More details can be found in The Life of Milarepa and The
Rain of Wisdom, Shambhala Publications.
Ganapati - a monkey-faced
guardian of the Buddha's teachings.
Ganden - major Gelukpa monastery
near Lhasa, founded in 1409 by Tsongkhapa.[map]
Gangtok - capital of the
former (up to 1975) independent kingdom Sikkim, situated between
Tibet, Bhutan, Nepal, and India.
Gar Drubchen - A Tibetan
accomplished master of the Drigung Kagyu school who was an emanation
of Nagarjuna and also Phamo
Drupa (1110-70), one of the three foremost disciples of Gampopa.
Dorje - Prahevajra; incarnation of a god who earlier
had been empowered by the buddhas. Immaculately conceived, his mother
was a nun, the daughter of King Dhahena Talo of Uddiyana. Garab
Dorje received all the tantras, scriptures and oral instructions
of Dzogchen from Vajrasattva and Vajrapani in person and became
the first human master in the Dzogchen lineage. Having reached the
state of complete enlightenment through the effortless Great Perfection,
Garab Dorje transmitted the teachings to his retinue of exceptional
beings. Manjushrimitra is regarded as his chief disciple. Padmasambhava
is also known to have received the transmission of the Dzogchen
tantras directly from Garab Dorje's wisdom form. Garab Dorje means
garuda - The mythological
bird, able to travel from one end of the universe to the other with
a single movement of its wings. It is also known to hatch from the
egg fully developed and ready to soar through the sky.
Gathering Palace of Sugatas
- (Deshek Dupey Podrang). The hermitage of Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo
above Dzongsar monastery. Sugata is a synonym for a buddha.
Gebchak - gompa, monastery.
Retreat center and nunnery founded by Tsang-Yang Gyatso, half a
day's horse ride from Fortress Peak or Lachab.
Gelug - The Tibetan school
of Buddhism founded by Tsongkhapa as a reformation of the tradition
of Atisha Dipamkara.
genyen - the twenty-one genyen,
guardian spirits of the Dharma who, when Padmasambhava was in Tibet,
were bound under oath to protect the Buddha's teachings.
Geshe Chayulwa (1075-1138)
- a master in the old Kadam tradition who was also one of the teachers
of Gampopa, the great Kagyu master.
geshe - a learned Buddhist
scholar or teacher.
Glorious Copper-Colored Mountain
- the terrestrial pure land of Padmasambhava.
Golden Garland Chronicles,
the - the extensive biography of the Lotus-Born master,
Padmasambhava; a terma revealed by Sangye
Golok - large province in
Gomde, the Land of Meditators
- a name for Nangchen.
gomdra - meditation retreat,
often for groups staying three years in seclusion, where the practice
is focused on Dzogchen or Mahamudra. Compare with drubdra.
Gompa - a monastery or temple
hall connected to a hermitage.
gonchung - a shrine room,
often small for the Dharma protectors.
Gongdu - Assemblage
of Realization, or 'gathering all the intentions into one';
a name used for certain revealed treasures, for instance Yidam Gongdu.
gonla - the lama in charge
of the chants for the protectors.
goshir - religious rank,
Great Mother of Transcendent Knowledge,
the - the twelve thick volumes of the Prajnaparamita scriptures,
one of the most famous sutras in Mahayana.
Great Perfection - Dzogchen;
the third of the three inner tantras of the Nyingma School. The
Great Perfection is the ultimate of all the 84,000 profound and
extensive sections of the Dharma, the realization of Buddha Samantabhadra,
exactly as it is. Synonym for 'Dzogchen' or 'Ati Yoga.'
Great Scroll Depicting the Hundred
Wondrous Deeds - the famous Tsurphu Scroll an early
Ming dynasty silk-backed painting with Chinese, Tibetan, Mongolian,
Uighur and Arabic inscriptions. It depicts the miracles performed
by the Fifth Karmapa Dezhin Shekpa during his 22-day visit to the
Yunglo (Yongle) emperor in Nanjing in 1407. The emperor also offered
the Karmapa the famous Black Hat, which he had seen in a vision
during a religious ceremony.
Great Stupa of Boudha - The
Jarung Khashor Stupa at Boudhanath, Nepal, situated in the Kathmandu
Valley. For details, see Keith Dowman, The Legend of the Great
Guhyagarbha - the
Tantra on the Essence of Secrets, which is the most vital of all
the tantras in the Old School (Nyingma) of Tibetan Buddhism.
gungtreng - the Chinese name
Chowang (1212-1270) - one of the five terton kings
and former life of Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche. For details, see Dudjom
Rinpoche's The Nyingma Lineage, its History and Fundamentals,
Guru Mahasukha - Great Bliss
Master, a peaceful form of Padmasambhava, usually depicted as wearing
the pandita hat and with hands in equanimity.
guru yoga - the final and
most important part of the preliminary practices. The practice of
supplicating for blessings and mingling the mind of an enlightened
master with one's own mind.
gyaling - a reed instrument
close to the Persian shanai and one of the principal ritual instruments
in Tibetan Buddhism.
Gyalpo Pehar - a powerful
spirit and guardian of the Dharma; the Dharma protector of Samye.
Gyalwang - King of All the
Buddhas, a special title for certain lamas such as the Karmapa or
Hayagriva - Tantric deity
shown with a horse's head within his flaming hair; wrathful aspect
of Buddha Amitabha. Identical with Padma Heruka, Lotus Speech, among
the Eight Sadhana Teachings .
hearing lineage - given from
the master's voice to the disciple's ears, and only to one person
at a time, rather than being a printed text.
Essence of Chetsun - (Chetsun Nyingtig), one of
the most important Dzogchen instructions of recent times, revealed
by Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo.
Heart Essence of Samantabhadra
- (Kunzang Tuktig), one of the most important Dzogchen instructions
of recent times, revealed by Chokgyur Lingpa.
Heart Essence of the Great Perfection
- (Dzogchen Nyingtig ), teachings of Dzogchen brought to
Tibet by Vimalamitra and Padmasambhava as for instance arranged
by Longchenpa in the Four Branches of Heart Essence, the
Heru Gompa - a monastery
in Nangchen near Tana south of Lachab; the seat of Kyungtrul Kargyam.
heruka - a wrathful deity,
for instance Hayagriva or Vajra Kilaya.
Hinayana; Mahayana; Vajrayana
- the three levels of the Buddha's teachings.
Hinayana - The vehicles focused
on contemplation of the four noble truths and the twelve links of
dependent origination, the practice of which brings liberation from
cyclic existence, samsara.
hundred peaceful and wrathful deities
- The 42 peaceful and 58 wrathful deities. The are often related
to the after-death experience of the bardo state. The details are
found in the Liberation Through Hearing in the Bardo .
hungry ghost - One of the
six classes of sentient beings, tormented by their own impure karmic
perception, which causes them to suffer tremendously from craving,
hunger and thirst.
Inexhaustible Garland of Lightning
- a petition chant to the guardians of the Dharma, especially those
who protect the Dzogchen teachings.
inner heat, blissful - see
Jambhala, Black - a particular
manifestation of Jambhala, the god of wealth.
- Dru Jamyang Drakpa. A close disciple of Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo
and a very learned master. one of the destined disciples predicted
in the root text Lamrim
Yeshe Nyingpo. We have a delightful story of him in Blazing
Splendor on pages 219-225 with a short
excerpt. Tricycle Magazine also featured him in the article
"Modest Master", August, 2005, p 46.
Kongtrul - Lodro Thaye (1813-1899); prophesized by
the Buddha Shakyamuni in the King of Samadhi Sutra and
by Padmasambhava in many of his termas. He studied and mastered
all the Buddha's teachings. His primary teachers were the Fourteenth
Karmapa, Situ Pema Nyinje Wangpo and the Great Khyentse. He became
the teacher of the fifteenth Karmapa, Khakyab
Dorje. He is renowned as an accomplished master, scholar, writer,
poet, and artist, and authored and compiled more than 100 volumes
of scriptures. Among these, the best known is the Five Treasuries.
In Splendor he is referred to as Old Kongtrul or simply
Jamgon: loving protector
- a title used for the greatest masters, for instance the first
Kongtrul or the Drukchen.
Khyentse Wangpo (1820-92) - the first Khyentse; great
master of the last century. He was the last of the Five Great Tertons
and was regarded as the combined reincarnation of Vimalamitra and
King Trisong Deutsen. He became the master and teacher of all the
Buddhist schools of Tibet and the founder of the Rimey movement.
There are ten volumes of his works in addition to his termas. Jamyang
means 'Manjushri, gentle melodiousness,' Khyentse Wangpo means 'Lord
of loving wisdom.' In this book he is referred to as Old Khyentse
or simply Khyentse.
Jangchub Shonnu - Lumey Dorje's
nephew and successor; early master in the Barom Kagyu lineage.
Jatson Nyingpo (1585-1656)
- revealer of terma, especially known for the Konchok Chidu
Jewel Garland, the
- a long collection of Cho songs composed by the third Karmapa and
codified by Karma Chagmey.
Jigmey Lingpa (1729-1798)
- reincarnation of Longchenpa, revealed the famous Nyingtig
cycle, the Innermost Essence. Among his immediate reincarnations
are counted Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo, Paltrul Rinpoche and Do Khyentse
Jokhang - the famous temple
and most important pilgrimage site in Lhasa, houses the Jowo statue
of Buddha Shakyamuni.
Jordruk - One of the Eight
Practice Lineages. Literally it means "Six Unions" and is according
to the system of Kalachakra.
Jowo - the Jowo Rinpoche
or Jowo Shakyamuni in the Jokhang, the main temple of Lhasa originally
called Rasa Trulnang Temple. This statue is said to have been made
while Buddha Shakyamuni was still alive and personally blessed by
Kadampa - a follower of the
Kadam - tradition; one of
the eight chariots of the practice lineages, brought to Tibet by
Atisha Dipamkara in
the eleventh century.
Kagyu - The lineage of teachings
brought to Tibet by Lord Marpa, received from the dharmakaya buddha
Vajradhara by the Indian siddha Tilopa, Saraha, and others. Transmitted
by Naropa and Maitripa to the Tibetan translator Marpa, the lineage
was passed on to Milarepa, Gampopa, Karmapa and others. The main
emphasis is on the path of means which is the Six doctrines of Naropa,
and the path of liberation which is the Mahamudra instructions of
Kahma - the "long lineage"
of the Nyingma school, the canonical scriptures, which has been
transmitted in an uninterrupted way from master to disciple since
Padmasambhava and before.
Kailash - the sacred mountain
in west Tibet.
Kalachakra - 'Wheel of Time.'
A tantra and a Vajrayana system taught by Buddha Shakyamuni himself,
showing the interrelationship between the phenomenal world, the
physical body and the mind.
Kalimpong - city near Darjeeling
in northern India, the old trading post between Calcutta and Lhasa.
Kalpa - Chowang Tulku's attendant.
Kangsar Khenpo - a Sakya
teacher from the Ngor monastery.
Kangsar - see Mount Kangsar;
Kangyur - the translated
words of the Buddha; the 103 or 104 volumes of the Tibetan canonical
scriptures that contain the direct words of Buddha Shakyamuni.
Ka-Nying Shedrub Ling monastery
- founded by Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche at the great stupa of Boudhanath
in Nepal; abbot and vajra master are Chokyi Nyima Rinpoche and Chokling
Kargah - Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's
Chagmey (1613-1678) - great saint and terton, belonging
to both the Nyingma and Kagyu traditions. His monastery was Neydo
(Nemdho) Tashi Choling in Chamdo. Known for his Union of Mahamudra
and Dzogchen .
Karma Gon - The monastic
seat of the Karmapa incarnations in Kham, situated in Lhato, on
the road between Surmang and Chamdo, south of Nangchen. Seat of
the first incarnations of Situ Rinpoche.
Karma Gyaltsen - Kyungtrul
Kargyam's main name.
Karma Lingpa - 14th cent.
Terton mostly known for revealing the text now famous as The
Tibetan Book of the Dead or more correctly The Great Liberation
Through Hearing in the Bardo.
Karma Pakshi (1204-1283)
- second Karmapa and therefore the first Karmapa tulku.
Karmapa - the Karmapa incarnation
line. Chokgyur Lingpa predicted the names of the first twenty-five.
The present is the seventeenth.
Khenpo - Karmey Khenpo's full name was Karmey Khenpo
Rinchen Dargye. My teacher, Samten Gyatso, described Karmey Khenpo
as "the great terton's disciple, who was a reincarnation of Khenpo
Bodhisattva and repeatedly certified by the great masters Khyentse,
Kongtrul, and Chokling, and an outstanding master in his own right."
Karmey Khentrul - the reincarnation
of Karmey Khenpo, the cousin of Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche.
Karpo Sabchu - yogi and attendant
of Chokgyur Lingpa.
Karsa Yuri - Tulku Urgyen
Kongtrul (1904-1953) - alias Jamgon Palden Khyentse
Özer, the immediate reincarnation of Old Kongtrul, reborn as the
son of the 15th
Karmapa. One of Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's root gurus.
Kathmandu - the capital of
Katok monastery - one of
the four main monasteries of the Nyingma tradition in Kham. Situated
south of Derge, near Palyul.
Katok Situ (1880-1925) -
Chokyi Gyatso; a great scholar from Katok monastery. One of the
teachers of Uncle Tersey.
kayas - the three kayas:
dharmakaya, sambhogakaya and nirmanakaya. Dharmakaya is the 'body'
of enlightened qualities, which is devoid of constructs, like space.
Can be either an aspect of the yogi's experience or of final enlightenment.
Sambhogakaya is the sublime form of as buddha in the buddhafields
endowed with the 'major and minor marks'. Nirmanakaya is the incarnations
to influence and benefit sentient beings.
Kechu River - one of the
rivers between Nangchen and Derge; it joins the Tsichu River in
front of the Tsikey monastery.
Dorje (1871-1922) - fifteenth Karmapa; disciple of
the old Kongtrul and teacher of Karsey Kongtrul.
Khala Rong-go - the place
where Chokgyur Lingpa revealed the terma treasure Tukdrub
Barchey Kunsel. Situated in Nangchen on the road between
Jekundu and Sharda.
Kham - independent kingdoms
east of Chamdo, including Nangchen, Derge Amdo and Golok; presently
occupies parts of the TAR (Tibetan Autonomous Region), Yunnan, Qinghai
and Sichuan provinces. It is known as eastern Tibet among non-Tibetans.
Khampa Gomchen - an eccentric
meditator and doctor who passed away in Nepal in the '80s.
Khampa - a person from one
of the regions in Kham.
Khamtrul Tenpey Nyima (right)
(1849-1907) - one of the main masters of the Drukpa Kagyu lineages.
His present incarnation resides in Tashi Jong, Himachal Pradesh,
Khandro Chenmo - the Great
Dakini of Tsurphu; consort of the fifteenth
Karmapa. Her reincarnation, Khandro Rinpoche, lives in Himachal
Pradesh, India, but teaches around the world.
Kharsha Rinpoche - a master
from Kharsha (Lahoul) in northern India.
khenchen - great scholar/khenpo;
a title only given to teachers of the highest degree of learning.
Khenpa Valley - a small hidden
place in Bhutan.
Bodhisattva - Usually known under the name Shantarakshita.
The Indian pandita and abbot of Vikramashila in India and of Samye
who ordained the first Tibetan monks.
Khenpo Lekshey - teacher
at Tsurphu between the fifteenth and sixteenth Karmapas.
Khenpo Ngakchung (1879-1941)
- scholar-teacher at Katok monastic college and a very important
reviver of the scholastic lineage of expounding the Dzogchen scriptures.
Considered to be incarnation of both Vimalamitra and Longchenpa.
Dorje is one of his last living disciples. Khenpo Ngakchung
got his name because there was an older khenpo with the name Ngawang,
so he became the "Younger Khenpo Ngawang." One of his works is available
in English with a short biography in the introduction: Khenpo Ngawang
Pelzang, A Guide to the Words of My Perfect Teacher (Shambhala
khenpo - a learned teacher
in a monastery or the one who gives precepts of monastic ordination.
Khentrul - "Khenpo's reincarnation"
here in this book refers to Karmey Khentrul, the tulku of Karmey
Rinpoche (1885-1977) - Khunu Lama Tenzin Gyaltsen;
lama from India who travelled all over Tibet and Kham and became
a teacher of the Dalai Lama. For more details, see his book on bodhichitta
in English: Vast as the Heavens, Deep as the Sea. He also
met Jamdrak and received the Light
Khunu - a province in the
northern part of Himachal Pradesh, India.
Khyentse of Palpung - reincarnation
of Old Khyentse residing at Palpung monastery.
Khyentse - see Dilgo Khyentse;
Dzongsar Khyentse; Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo; Khyentse of Palpung.
kilaya dagger - same as kilaya.
kilaya - dagger used in tantric
rituals, often the blade has three sides.
Kilaya - deity usually known
as Vajra Kilaya or Vajra Kumara; wrathful form of Vajrasattva.
King Jah - Indian king who
received the eighteen Mahayoga tantras on the roof of his palace
approximately one hundred years after Buddha Shakyamuni's passing.
The lineage of these teachings continues to the present day.
King Nyatri - first ruler
of all of Tibet, took the throne in 247 BC.
Trisong Deutsen (790-844) - second great Dharma king
of Tibet who invited Padmasambhava, Shantarakshita, Vimalamitra,
and many other Buddhist teachers to Tibet; built Samye, the great
monastery and teaching center modeled after Odantapuri, established
Buddhism as the state religion of Tibet, and during his reign the
first monks were ordained. He arranged for panditas and lotsawas
to translate sacred texts, and he established centers for teaching
and practice. Among his later incarnations are Nyang Ral Nyima Özer
(1124-1192), Guru Chowang (1212-1270), Jigmey Lingpa (1729-1798),
and Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo (1820-1892).
Konchok Gyurmey Tenpey Gyaltsen
- second Chokling of Tsikey.
Paldron (1858?-1939?) - Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's grandmother;
daughter of Chokgyur Lingpa. Her name means Precious Lamp of Splendor.
Kongpo - province near the
Indian border, straight east of Lhasa, and southwest of Nangchen.
Kongtrul - Jamgon Kongtrul;
see also Karsey Kongtrul; Dzigar Kongtrul.
kudung - sacred remains of
a master's body, either before or after cremation. Sometimes the
entire body was embalmed an enshrined in a stupa, as was the case
with Chokgyur Lingpa.
Kungo Kalsang - son of Chimey
Dorje; Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's half brother.
Dechen - Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's consort; mother of
Chokyi Nyima and Chokling Rinpoches.
Kunzang Dorje - Tulku Urgyen
Rinpoche's youngest brother; supposedly an incarnation of Neten
Kunzang Tuktig -
Heart Essence of Samantabhadra; collection of terma teachings revealed
by Chokgyur Lingpa focused on the peaceful and wrathful deities
as the development stage and on Trekcho and Togal as the completion
Kutsab Lhakhang - shrine
room dedicated to a special statue representing Padmasambhava.
kutsab - representative,
usually refers to a statue of the Lotus-Born master, Padmasambhava.
Terton - treasure revealer of the Kyasu clan; Kyasu
being Chokgyur Lingpa's family name. One wall of Kyasu mansion is
still visible an hour's walk from Tsechu monastery in Nangchen.
Kyipuk - retreat encampment
of the great master Shakya Shri, near Druk Sang-Ngak Choling, at
Jar in southern Tibet.
Kyirong - southwest of Lhasa,
on the old border of Nepal directly north of Kathmandu.
Kyungpo clan - same family
line as Milarepa; rulers of west Tibet in the days of the early
king Songtsen Gampo.
Kyungpo Naljor (1002-1064)
- Tibetan master who brought teachings back from India later known
as the Shangpa Kagyu and is thus regarded as its founder; disciple
of the female siddha Niguma.
Kyungpo region - presently
situated in Tenchen county, south of Nangchen one the road between
Chamdo and Lhasa. Kyungpo is the name of a district in Kham and
Kyungtrul Kargyam - Karma
Gyaltsen; one of Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's teachers and regarded as
one of the emanations of Jamgon Kongtrul the first. Kargyam is an
abbreviation of Karma Gyaltsen. The king of Nangchen had four gurus;
one of them, Kyungtrul's father, resided at Heru Gompa.
Lachab monastery/Gompa -
Lachab Jangchub Nordzin Choling; main monastery of Samten Gyatso
and Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche in Nangchen.
lachen - title of grand master,
Ladakh - area to the far
west of Tibet, presently in India, north of Kashmir.
Degah - Dechen Chodron; Chokgyur Lingpa's consort and
Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's great-grandmother. Her name means Dharma
Lamp of Great Bliss.
Lake Manasarovar - famous
lake and pilgrimage site near Mount Kailash in west Tibet.
Lama Latsey - one of Karmey
Khenpo's disciples; important holder of the monastic precepts in
Lama Putse - learned disciple
of the third Chokling of Neten and of Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche.
Lama Sangdu - terma
treasure revealed by Guru Chowang.
Lamdrey - (Path
and Fruit) vital teachings of the Sakya tradition that come from
the India master Virupa.
Yeshe Nyingpo - spontaneous song by the ninth-century
Indian master Padmasambhava, covering the entire Buddhist path to
enlightenment, especially that of Vajrayana. Its commentary is the
Light of Wisdom .
Langdarma (king 841-6) -
evil oppressor who almost succeeded in eradicating Buddhism in Tibet;
brother of King Ralpachen; assassinated by Palgyi Dorje in 906.
Lhabsang - one of the two
potential successors to the fifth Dalai Lama, the other being Sangye
Lhacham Kuchok - Her Ladyship;
polite way to address the wife of a dignitary.
Lhagsam - Chokgyur Lingpa's
Lhakhang - shrine room.
Lhasa - capital of Tibet.
Lhodrak - district south
of Lhasa, north of Bhutan.
Lhundrub Teng - Palace of
Spontaneous Perfection in Derge; founded by Tangtong Gyalpo (1361-1485);
since then the main temple for the Derge Kings.
of Wisdom - famous set of teachings covering the
entire Buddhist path to enlightenment, especially that of Vajrayana.
Based on Lamrim
Yeshe Nyingpo, a spontaneous song by the ninth-century
Indian master Padmasambhava, this scripture is highly revered and
played a pivotal role in Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's education and personal
practice. He knew the entire root text by heart and referred to
it continually in his own teaching throughout his life.
lineage holder - disciple
who receives a teaching and/or empowerment, realizes its intent
and is capable of passing it on to others. A lama may hold many
lineages of teaching.
lineage masters - teachers
through whom a certain teaching and/or empowerment has been transmitted.
Lingpa - title usually referring
to a revealer of hidden treasures, for instance Sangye
Lingpa, Ratna Lingpa, Chokgyur Lingpa.
Lion-faced Dakini - one of
the chief deities for averting obstacles and negative forces.
- Heart-Essence of the Vast Expanse; mind treasure of mystical
teachings discovered by the great scholar and adept Jigmey Lingpa,
transmitted to him by Longchenpa; lineage of the Nyingma school
of Tibetan Buddhism. See Masters of Meditation and Miracles:
Lives of the Great Buddhist Masters of India and Tibet, Tulku
Thondup, Shambhala Publications 1999.
(1308-1363) - major lineage master and writer of the Nyingma lineage;
an incarnation of Princess Pema Sal, the daughter of King Trisong
Deutsen, to whom Guru Rinpoche had entrusted his own lineage of
Dzogchen known as Khandro Nyingtig. He is single-handedly
regarded as the most important writer on Dzogchen teachings. His
works include the Seven Great Treasuries, the Three
Trilogies and his commentaries in the Nyingtig Yabzhi.
A more detailed account of his life and teachings is found in Buddha
Mind by Tulku Thondup Rinpoche, Snow Lion, 1989.
longevity practice - practices
for restoring vital energy that has been degenerated and dissipated
which causes illness, aging and death to occur.
Loter Wangpo (1847-1914)
- lama from the Ngor monastery in the Tsang province of Central
Tibet; one of the principal disciples of both Khyentse and Kongtrul.
lotsawa - translator of the
canonical texts; usually worked with Indian panditas.
Lotus Essence Tantra
- (Pema Nyingpo Gyu), short tantra that gives liberation through
hearing or reading.
Lotus Garuda Fortress - Pema
Kyung Dzong, retreat place high up on the mountain above Tsurphu.
Lotus-Born master - English
translation of Padmasambhava.
Lumey Dorje - of the Tsangsar
clan; one of the masters in the Barom Kagyu lineage; Tulku Urgyen
Lungtok of Nyoshul (1829-1901/2)
- one of Paltrul Rinpoche's disciples; main teacher of Khenpo Ngakchung.
Lungtok - childhood name
of Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's second son. The sixteenth Karmapa later
recognized him as the fourth Chokling of Tsikey.
Machen Pomra - the mighty
Amnye Machen Range, also called Magyal Pomra; sacred mountain said
to be the abode of Machen Pomra, powerful protector of the Dharma
Machik Labdron (1055-1153)
- great female master and incarnation of Yeshe Tsogyal who set down
the Cho practice of cutting through ego-clinging. Machik Labdron
means 'Only Mother Lamp of Dharma.'
Maha, Anu, and Ati Yoga -
short for Mahayoga, Anu Yoga and Ati Yoga; the three inner tantras
of the Nyingma school.
Mahakala - one of the main
Dharma protectors; a wrathful form of Avalokiteshvara.
Mahamudra - literally, 'great
seal,' one of the most direct practices for realizing one's buddha
nature; system of teachings which is the basic view of Vajrayana
practice according to the Sarma or New schools of Kagyu, Gelug,
and Sakya - just as Dzogchen is for the Nyingma school.
Maha - short for Mahayoga;
the first of the three inner tantras: Maha, Anu, and Ati Yoga.
Mahayana - 'greater vehicle;'
connotation of 'greater' or 'lesser' refers to scope of aspiration,
methods applied and depth of insight. Central to Mahayana practice
is the bodhisattva vow to liberate all sentient beings through compassion
and insight into emptiness.
Mahayoga tantras - primarily
the eighteen main tantras now contained in the Nyingma Gyubum,
chief of which is Guhyagarbha Tantra .
Mahayoga, Anu Yoga and Ati Yoga
- the three inner tantras of the Nyingma school; profound methods
for awakening to buddhahood in one lifetime.
Mahayoga - first of the three
inner tantras of the Nyingma school; emphasizes sadhana practice
and the view that liberation is attained through growing accustomed
to the insight into the indivisibility of the superior two truths
- purity and equality. The pure natures of the aggregates, elements
and sense factors are the male and female buddhas and bodhisattvas.
At the same time, everything that appears and exists is of the equal
nature of emptiness.
Manang - district in northwestern
mandala offering - an offering
visualized as the entire universe, as well as the arrangement of
offerings in tantric ritual, often placed as a circular, ornate
plate. To present a teaching "as a mandala offering" shows the utmost
respect for the recipient.
Mandala - 'center and surrounding;'
usually a deity along with its surrounding environment. A mandala
is often a symbolic, graphic representation of a tantric deity's
realm of existence.
mani stones - stones carved
or engraved with the mani mantra of Avalokiteshvara: OM MANI PADME
HUNG. They are often made under commission by a devotee to increase
the merit of the living or the dead and placed where other people
can benefit from seeing or circumambulating them.
Manjushri - one of eight
main bodhisattvas; personification of the perfection of transcendent
Mao Tse-tung - helmsman of
Communism in China; seen by many Tibetans as possessed by a demonic
force bent on destroying the Dharma and happiness of sentient beings.
Mara - demon of obstacles;
anything that distracts a practitioner from the Dharma and the pursuit
of lasting happiness and liberation.
Maratika - sacred cave where
Padmasambhava and Mandarava attained immortality; these days believed
to be in southeastern Nepal.
Margyenma - one of King Trisong
Deutsen's queens who made obstacles for Vairotsana, resulting in
Marpa - great forefather
of the Kagyu lineage. See Life of Marpa the Translator.
means and liberation - refer,
in the Kagyu context, to Naropa's Six Doctrines and Mahamudra.
meditative composure - see
Melemchi - village in the
Helambu region (Yolmo), three days walk north of Kathmandu.
mendrub - sacred medicine
made from herbs and relics and consecrated in a particular ritual
known as mendrub drubchen .
metsa - old-fashion fire
kit using flint, steel and dry moss or bark.
(1040-1123) - one of the most famous yogis and poets in Tibetan
religious history; much of the teachings of the Karma Kagyu schools
passed through him. See The Life of Milarepa and The
Hundred Thousand Songs of Milarepa. His name means 'Cotton-clad
mind essence - nature of
mind. Pointing out the mind essence: the main aim of the 'pointing-out
instruction' is to make obvious to the meditator what it is that
knows and thinks - not as a theory but a direct experience. See
Mind Section; Space Section; Instruction
Section - the Three Sections of the Great Perfection;
after Garab Dorje established the six million four hundred thousand
tantras of Dzogchen in the human world, his chief disciple, Manjushrimitra,
arranged these tantras into three categories: the Mind Section emphasizing
luminosity, the Space Section emphasizing emptiness, and the Instruction
Section emphasizing their inseparability. They represent the most
profound or subtle spiritual literature present in this world.
mind treasure or terma -
revelation directly within the mind of a great master, without the
need for a terma of material substance. The teachings revealed in
this way were implanted within the 'indestructible sphere' at the
time when the master in a former life was one of Padmasambhava's
Mindrolling - one of the
two primary Nyingma monasteries in Central Tibet (founded in 1670,
by Terdag Lingpa), the other being Dorje Drag.
mind-stream - individual
continuity of consciousness; like the stream of a river, it is neither
permanent nor interrupted.
(1846-1912) - student of Jamgon Kongtrul, Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo
and Paltrul Rinpoche. Blessed by Manjushri, he became one of the
greatest scholars of his time; his collected works fill more than
30 volumes. His chief disciple was Shechen Gyaltsab Pema Namgyal,
the root guru of Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche.
momo - Chinese style dumplings,
filled with meat or cottage cheese.
Monkey-Faced Ganapati - a
protector of the Dharma.
Mount Dakpo - Dakla Gampo;
eight-peaked mountain in the region in Southern Central Tibet.
Mount Gegyal - presumably
in the Gegyal Riwo district southwest of Nangchen, west of Tengchen
on the main road from Chamdo to Lhasa.
Mount Kailash - sacred mountain
in west Tibet.
Mount Kangsar - mountain
on the old route between Nangchen and Lhasa.
Mount Karma - sacred mountain
south of Nangchen on the way to Chamdo.
Mount Sumeru - mythological
mountain of giant proportions at the center of our world-system
surrounded by the four continents; abode of gods of the Desire Realms.
It is encircled by chains of lesser mountains, lakes, continents,
and oceans and is said to rise 84,000 leagues above sea-level. Our
present world is situated on the southern continent called Jambudvipa.
mudra - sacred gesture; symbolic
naga - powerful long-lived
serpent-like beings who inhabit bodies of water and often guard
great treasure. Nagas belong half to the animal realm and half to
the god realm. They generally live in the form of snakes, but many
can change into human form.
Nagi Gompa - Tulku Urgyen
Rinpoche's hermitage on the northern slope of the Kathmandu valley.
name-burning - ritual that
guides the dead to a better rebirth; can only be performed by a
Namkhai Nyingpo - one of
the twenty-five close disciples of the Lotus-Born master.
Nangchen - independent kingdom
in eastern Tibet; presently situated in the southern part of the
Nangso Chenmo - monastery
built by Lumey Dorje of Tsangsar, one of the early Barom Kagyu masters;
the ruins are situated on a small hill a half a day's walk south
from Tsechu Gompa.
Naropa - siddha of India,
chief disciple of Tilopa and guru of Marpa in the Kagyu Lineage.
See Rain of Wisdom and The Life of Marpa .
nature of mind - synonym
for mind-essence or buddha nature; should be distinguished from
the thinking mind (sem), which refers to ordinary discursive thinking
based on ignorance. This nature is the basic space from and within
which these thoughts take place.
Nenang - Pawo
Rinpoche's monastery in Central Tibet, 60 km from Lhasa on the
way to Tsurphu.
Nendo - (Neydo) one of the
branches within the Karma Kagyu lineage; originates from Karma Chagmey.
The main monastery (Nemdho Tashi Choling) is in Chamdo south of
Neten Chokling - see Chokling
Neten monastery - one of
the three main 'seats' of Chokgyur Lingpa. When the terton came
there, he had a vision of the Sixteen Arhats or the Sixteen Elders.
"Neten" means "elders" in Tibetan. It is situated on the border
between Nangchen (Qinghai) and Chamdo (Tibet Autonomous Region)
near Tsechu Gompa.
Neuring Senge Dzong - Lion
Fortress Meadow, one of the five principal retreat places of Padmasambhava,
situated just inside the border of Bhutan north of Lhuntse Dzong.
New Schools of the Later Translations
- see Sarma schools.
New Treasures -
Chokling Tersar; collection of termas in the forty thick volumes
revealed by Chokgyur Lingpa together with connected teachings, arrangement
texts and commentaries written primarily by Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo,
Jamgon Kongtrul, Khakyab Dorje, Tsewang Norbu, Tersey Tulku and
Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche.
neydag - lord of the locality,
Ngabo - high government official
in the nineteen fifties' Lhasa.
Ngadrama - likeness; statue
or painting that is supposed to look exactly like the person depicted.
Ngakchung, Khenpo (1879-1941)
- see Khenpo Ngakchung.
ngakpa - practitioner of
Vajrayana who keeps long hair, a different robe than monks, and
can be married.
Ngaktrin of Argong - second
Ngaktrin Tulku; disciple of the twelfth Karmapa, Jangchub Dorje
(1703-1733) and the eighth Situ, Chokyi Jungney.
Ngaktrin - Ngawang Trinley;
incarnation line of Samten Gyatso who was the fourth Ngaktrin tulku.
Ngari - provinces in the
western part of Tibet.
Ngawang Trinley - contemporary
of the eleventh Karmapa, Yeshe Dorje (1675-1702); former life of
Samten Gyatso; first of the Ngaktrin incarnations who built Lachab
Ngedon Ösel Ling - one of
the monasteries built by Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche situated on the hilltop
behind Swayambhu in the Kathmandu valley; now the seat of Tsoknyi
Rinpoche in Nepal.
Ngor monastery - Sakya monastery
in the Tsang province of Central Tibet.
nine vehicles - nine gradual
vehicles of the Nyingma school: Shravaka, Pratyekabuddha, Bodhisattva,
Kriya, Upa, Yoga, Maha, Anu, and Ati. They are meant to be alternative
approaches to liberation and enlightenment for people of various
types of capacity and inclinations.
nondual awareness - (especially
in the context of the pointing-out instruction to the awakened state)
state of consciousness that is totally free from ignorance and clinging
to the duality of perceiver and perceived. It is consequently free
from selfish emotions and the creation of unvirtuous karma. The
recognition of and training in this nondual awareness is the central
issue in Dzogchen and Mahamudra.
nonmeditation - fourth of
four levels of Mahamudra. For more details, see Dakpo Tashi Namgyal,
Clarifying the Natural State. (Rangjung Yeshe Publications).
Norbu Lingka Park - summer
palace of the Dalai Lamas in the vicinity of Lhasa.
Nubri - situated in Ganesh
Himal, northwestern part of Nepal.
Nyagla Pema Dudul (1816-1872)
- master who attained rainbow body.
Nyang-Ral Nyima Özer (1124-1192)
- first of five king-like tertons and a reincarnation of King Trisong
Deutsen. Several of his revealed treasures are included in the Rinchen
Terdzo, among which the most well known is the Kabgye Deshek
Dupa, a cycle of teachings focusing on the Eight Commands,
and the biography of Guru Rinpoche called Sanglingma, now
published as The Lotus-Born. Nyang Ral means 'Braided one
from Nyang,' and Nyima Özer means 'Ray of sun light.'
Nyemo - area southwest of,
but close to, Lhasa.
Nyenchen Tanglha - important
protector of the Nyingma teachings, regarded as a bodhisattva on
the eighth level; name of mountain range north of Lhasa.
Nyendrub - Three
Vajra Practices of Approach and Accomplishment; one of the
eight chariots of the Practice Lineage brought to Tibet by the master
Orgyenpa (1230-1309) who had traveled to the terrestrial pure land
Uddiyana where he met the female buddha Vajra Varahi.
nyerpa - steward managing
the affairs of a monastic household in both secular and ritual matters.
Nyingma Kahma -
Oral Transmissions of the Old School; 56 volumes in the expanded
edition published by Dudjom Rinpoche. The predominant number of
scriptures concern the three inner tantras.
Nyingma school - teachings
brought to Tibet and translated mainly during the reign of King
Trisong Deutsen and in the subsequent period up to Rinchen Zangpo
in the ninth century, chiefly by the great masters Padmasambhava,
Vimalamitra, Shantarakshita, and Vairotsana. The two main types
of transmission are Kahma and Terma. Practices are based on both
the outer and inner tantras with emphasis on the practice of the
inner tantras of Mahayoga, Anu Yoga and Ati Yoga.
- see Four Branches of Heart Essence .
Nyingtig - heart
essence; usually refers to the innermost aspect of the Dzogchen
teachings, such as the instructions of Vimalamitra or Padmasambhava.
Nyoshul Khen (1932 -1999)
- one of the greatest recent khenpos of the Nyingma tradition; renowned
for his spontaneous poetry and songs of realization; disciple of
Shedrub Tenpey Nyima and one of the holders of the Hearing Lineage
of Nyingtig which came through Jigmey Lingpa and Paltrul Rinpoche.
Old Khyentse - in this book,
short of Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo.
Old Kongtrul - in this book,
short for Jamgon Kongtrul the First.
om mani peme hung - famous
mantra of Avalokiteshvara, the bodhisattva of compassion.
One Hundred Cho empowerments
- Chowang Gyatsa; collection of one hundred empowerments for the
practice of Cho.
Orgyen Tobgyal - oldest son
of the third Neten Chokling. Lives in Bir, Himachal Pradesh in Northern
India, where he has rebuilt Neten monastery.
Padmasambhava - the Lotus-Born
master who brought Vajrayana to Tibet in the eight century; also
referred to as Guru Rinpoche, the precious teacher. For more details
on this master's life, see The Lotus-Born.
Padmasattva - chief deity
in a mind treasure revealed by Old Khyentse after Chokgyur Lingpa's
passing. In a vision, he saw the great terton in his sambhogakaya
form and, receiving an empowerment and teachings, wrote them down.
pakshi - see under tishi.
Palbar - Tibetan word translated
here as Blazing Splendor.
Palpung - large Kagyu monastery
near Derge in Kham; seat of the Situ incarnations; founded in 1717
by Situ Chokyi Jungney.
Paltrul Rinpoche (1808-1887)
- one of the foremost masters of his time known not only for his
scholarship and learning but also for his example of renunciation
and compassion. His most famous works include Words of my Perfect
Teacher (Kunsang Lamey Shellung) and his commentary on Three
Words Striking the Vital Point (Tsiksum Nedek), the quintessence
of the Dzogchen teachings.
Palyul - Namgyal Jangchub
Ling, one of the four main Nyingma monasteries in Kham; founded
in 1665 by Rigdzin Kunsang Sherab.
Panchen Lama - incarnation
line of the abbots of Tashi Lhunpo monastery, established in the
time of the Fifth Dalai Lama; first Panchen Lama was Lobzang Chogyen
pandita - learned master,
scholar, professor in Buddhist philosophy.
Paro - famous pilgrimage
site in Bhutan, ninety minutes drive from the capital Thimphu.
Rinpoche (1912-1991) - Tsuklag Nangwa Wangchuk; one
of the main masters of the Kagyu lineage in recent times.
peaceful and wrathful deities
- 42 peaceful and 58 wrathful deities representing the basic qualities
of buddha nature, the transformation of samsaric traits on the path,
and the perfect virtues of complete enlightenment. The practice
connected to their mandala is very popular in the Nyingma and Kagyu
Pema Kyung Dzong - see Lotus
Pema Ösel Do-Ngak Lingpa
- Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo's (Old Khyentse) terton title, given by
Pema Trinley - the great
terton's servant; told many stories to Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche.
Pemako - region in southern
Tibet famous for its hidden land of sacred places; one third is
inside Tibet and two-thirds in Arunachal Pradesh of India.
Phakchok - Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's
grandson; Tsikey Chokling's oldest son. See also Sey Phakchok.
PHAT - sacred, tantric syllable
used in the practices of phowa, Cho or Trekcho
phey - an exclamation used
in Cho practice; same as PHAT but with different pronunciation.
phowa - tantric practice
of ejection of consciousness through the crown of the head at the
time of death to effectuate a rebirth in a buddhafield. This is
often accompanied by visible sign of success.
pith instructions - practical
and concise advice on how to carry out a spiritual practice in the
most simple and effective way.
- direct introduction to the nature of mind, of paramount importance
in Dzogchen and Mahamudra; given by a root guru so that the disciple
recognizes the nature of mind.
Ponlop Rinpoche - incarnation
line of masters connected to Dzogchen monastery in Kham. The sixth
Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche, Tubten Jigdral Tsewang Dorje (1925-62),
was the brother of the sixteenth Karmapa.
ponpo - local chieftain,
similar to district governor.
Potala - famous palace of
the Dalai Lamas and the landmark of Lhasa.
Prajnaparamita sutras - teachings
that describe insight, transcendent knowledge, and other practices
of a bodhisattva, as well as a buddha's omniscient state of enlightenment.
These sutras exists in varying degree of details, the shortest being
the famous Heart Sutra memorized by most monks and nuns
and the longest being the Hundred Thousand in twelve large
Prajnaparamita - transcendent
knowledge; Mahayana teachings on insight into emptiness, transcending
the fixation of subject, object and action; associated with the
Buddha's second turning of the wheel of Dharma. Since Prajnaparamita
eliminates the most subtle obscuration, this insight is often called
Mother of All Buddhas.
preliminary practices of the four
times hundred thousand - (four foundations), traditional
basis for a Vajrayana practitioner's development: refuge and bodhisattva
vow, Vajrasattva recitation, mandala offering and guru yoga, each
of which are repeated one hundred thousand times.
Prince Murub - second son
of King Trisong Deutsen; close disciple of Padmasambhava, attained
enlightenment and took the vow to come back repeatedly to reveal
the hidden treasures of the Lotus-Born master; later incarnated
as Chokgyur Lingpa.
protectors - guardians of
the Dharma teachings.
Puntsok Wangdu - Bhutanese
dignitary of the drasho rank; father of one of the incarnations
of Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo.
pure realm or lands - buddhafields;
manifested through the aspirations of a bodhisattva in conjunction
with the merit of sentient beings. According to the tantras, a buddhafield
is an expression of the awakened state. A practitioner can take
rebirth in Sukhavati, the pure land of Buddha Amitabha, at the moment
of death or during the bardo through a combination of pure faith,
sufficient merit, and one-pointed determination.
Rabjam - see Shechen Rabjam;
Longchen Rabjam/ Longchenpa.
Rabsel Dawa - one of the
names of Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche.
rainbow body - at the time
of death of a practitioner who has reached the exhaustion of all
dualistic clinging through the Dzogchen practice of Togal, the five
gross elements which form the physical body, dissolve back into
their essences, five-colored light. Sometimes the only remainder
is the hair and the nails are left behind. In the chapter on Accomplishment,
Rainbow Painting, Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche gives a fascinating
account of an old nun attaining rainbow body in the shed of a benefactors
rakta vessel - sacred implement
in tantric rituals.
Ralpachen - great religious
ruler and grandson of Trisong Deutsen; also known as the third of
the great Dharma kings who established Buddhism in Tibet.
Ramoche - temple in Lhasa;
contains one of the two most famous Buddha statues in all of Tibet.
Ratna Lingpa (1403-1478)
- one of the major revealers of treasures whose termas are still
practiced today in Nangchen.
reading transmission - authorization
to study a scripture by listening to it being read aloud.
Realization Directly Revealed
- teachings on the Great Perfection entitled Samantabhadra's
Realization Directly Revealed (Kuntu Zangpo Gongpa Sangtal du Tenpa)
from the great revealer of hidden treasures Rigdzin Godem's tradition
of Northern Treasures.
Reding - (Reting), regent
between the thirteenth and fourteenth (present) Dalai Lamas.
rediscovered treasure - terma
that is brought forth after having been revealed in the past, even
refuge - source of protection,
place of trust, object of support.
reliquary box - (gau), amulet
box to carry around ones next or place on the shrine; may contain
relics from past master.
Repa Karpo - early master
in the Barom Kagyu lineage; Tishi Repa's chief disciple.
representations of enlightened body,
speech and mind - shrine objects; statues, scriptures and
Rigdzin Godem (1337-1408)
- one of the five king-like tertons; great treasure revealer of
the tradition of Northern Treasures. Among his termas are
the Dzogchen teachings Gongpa Sangtal.
Rigpey Dorje (1924-1981)
- sixteenth Karmapa; disciple of the eleventh Situ and Karsey Kongtrul;
established numerous monasteries and Dharma centers outside of Tibet
and was profoundly instrumental in preserving the Buddha's teachings.
Rinchen Lingpa (1295-1375)
- one of the eleven great revealers of hidden treasures with the
Rinchen Namgyal - master-scholar
and disciple of Jamgon Kongtrul and Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo.
Rinchen Terdzo -
see Treasury of Precious Termas.
Rinchen Zangpo (957-1055)
- important translator at the time of Atisha; known as the first
lotsawa of the New Schools.
ringsel - pills, tiny white
pearls; often found among the ashes of sublime people and great
Rinpoche - venerable; respectful
way of addressing one's guru, abbot of Buddhist teacher.
ritual of burnt food - (sur),
smoke produced by burning flour mixed with pure food and sacred
substances; can nourish bardo spirits and hungry ghosts.
Riwoche monastery - important
monastic center for the Taklung branch of the Kagyu lineage, situated
to the south of Nangchen a little more than one hundred kilometers
rolang - Tibetan-style zombie;
walking dead or a re-animated corpse. This unbelievable type of
resurrection is believed to be a goblin that occupies a dead body,
rather than the deceased spirit coming back to life in his own body.
root guru - vajra master
who confers empowerment, who bestows reading transmission, or who
explains the meaning of the tantras. A practitioner of Vajrayana
can have several types of root guru. The ultimate root guru is the
master who gives the pointing-out instruction so that one recognizes
the nature of mind.
ropani - measurement for
land in Nepal; eight ropanis are approximately one acre, sixteen
Rumtek - chief seat of the
Karma Kagyu lineage established in Sikkim, India, by the sixteenth
Sabchu Rinpoche - lama from
Dilyak monastery in Nangchen.
Sachen Kunga Nyingpo (1092-1158)
- one of the five forefathers of the Sakya lineage.
sadhana - means of accomplishment;
tantric liturgy and procedure for practice. The typical sadhana
structure involves a preliminary part including the taking of refuge
and arousing bodhichitta, a main part involving visualization of
a buddha and recitation of the mantra, and a concluding part with
dedication of merit to all sentient beings.
Sahor - kingdom in ancient
India; believed to be identical with Mandi, Himachal Pradesh.
Sakya lineage - one of the
four major schools of Buddhism in Tibet; began in the eleventh century
when Drogmi Lotsawa 993-1050), disciple of the Indian master Virupa,
brought his teachings back to Tibet.
Sakya Pandita (1182-1251)
- Kunga Gyaltsen; renowned scholar and Tibetan statesman; staved
off a Mongolian invasion (1244) by converting Emperor Godan Khan
Sakya monastery - one of
the main seats of the lineage in Central Tibet.
samadhi - state of undistracted
concentration or meditative state; in the context of Vajrayana can
refer to either the development stage or the completion stage. Tulku
Urgyen Rinpoche often uses it to means stability in the awakened
Samantabhadra - primordial
buddha who awakened to enlightenment many eons before this world
was formed; forefather of the Dzogchen teachings.
samaya - sacred pledges,
precepts or commitments of Vajrayana practice; essentially consist
of maintaining harmonious relationship with the vajra master and
Dharma siblings and not straying from the continuity of the practice.
A samaya violator is someone with severely damaged or broken samaya,
comparable to a traitor or demon.
Samgya - abbreviation of
Samsara - 'cyclic existence,'
'vicious circle' or 'round' of birth and death and rebirth within
the six realms; characterized by suffering, impermanence, and ignorance;
the state of ordinary sentient beings fettered by ignorance and
dualistic perception, karma and disturbing emotions. It also means
ordinary reality, an endless cycle of frustration and suffering
generated as the result of karma.
Samten Gyatso (1880-1944?)
- master of the Barom and New Treasures lineages; based
at Lachab monastery in Nangchen; Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's uncle &
Samten Kangsar - powerful
spirit and guardian of the Dharma.
Samye - temple complex and
monastery in Central Tibet founded by Padmasambhava, King Trisong
Deutsen, and Shantarakshita; center of the early transmission.
Sangha - community of practitioners
usually the fully ordained monks and nuns or the ngakpas, tantric
practitioners distinguished by their long braided hair, white skirts,
and striped shawls.
Sang-Ngak - (Uncle Sang-Ngak);
the uncle of Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche.
Sangye Gyamtso (1653-1703/5)
- regent-king after the fifth Dalai Lama, and one of Chokgyur Lingpa's
Sangye Lama (990?-1070) -
earliest terton in Tibet.
Lingpa - reincarnation of the second son of King Trisong
Deutsen; major terton and revealer of the Lama Gongdu cycle
in 13 volumes.
Sangye Yeshe of Nub - Nubchen
Sangye Yeshe; one of the twenty-five disciples of Padmasambhava;
chief recipient of the Anu Yoga teachings and visited India and
Nepal seven times. When the evil king Langdarma attempted to destroy
Buddhism in Tibet, Sangye Yeshe instilled fear in the king by causing
an enormous scorpion, the size of nine yaks, to magically appear
by a single gesture of his right hand. Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche is
considered one of his reincarnations.
Sarma schools - New schools:
Kagyu, Sakya, and Gelug as well as Shijey and Cho, Jordruk, Shangpa
Kagyu, and Nyendrub (Kalachakra).
Sarnath - sacred site near
Varanasi where Buddha Shakyamuni gave the first teaching on the
four noble truths.
Scripture of the Great Assemblage
- (Do Gongdu), fundamental tantra in the Anu Yoga category.
Secret Essence Kilaya
- (Sangtik Purpa), terma revelation of Chokgyur Lingpa.
Secret Mantra - synonym for
self-appeared - images, syllables,
etc. The Himalayan region abounds with divine images that supposedly
are not made by human hand.
semtri - guidance in understanding
and experiencing the nature of mind; vital part of Mahamudra and
- seven profound writings by Longchenpa.
Sevenfold Cycle of Profundity
- (Zabpa Kordun), a most extensive set of revelations by Chokgyur
Lingpa; contains the sadhana of the Lotus-Dakini, Kilaya, etc.
Sey Phakchok - son of Shakya
Shri who continued his teaching and encampment.
Shabdrung Rinpoche - early
name for Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo (Old Khyentse).
shabdrung - vajra master
in charge of tantric ceremonies, a religious rank two steps below
the highest hierarch of the Sakya school.
Shabkar Tsokdrug Rangdrol
(1781-1851) - great master-bodhisattva; see Life of Shabkar
Shakya Shri - Tibetan mahasiddha
of the nineteenth century; belonged chiefly to the Drukpa Kagyu
Shakyamuni - the historical
Buddha, regarded as the chief teacher of our present age.
shamatha and vipashyana -
stillness and insight; two basic meditation practices common to
most schools of Buddhism.
Shangpa Kagyu - one of the
eight practice lineages; brought to Tibet by Kyungpo Naljor (1002-1064).
Shantarakshita - abbot of
Vikramashila who ordained the first Tibetan monks at the invitation
of King Trisong Deutsen.
Shantideva (685-763) - one
of the eighty-four mahasiddhas of India; composed the famous Bodhisattva
Charya Avatara (The Way of the Bodhisattva).
Shechen Kongtrul (1901-1960)
- Pema Drimey; one of the incarnations of Jamgon Kongtrul (Old Kongtrul);
guru of Chogyam Trungpa.
Shechen monastery - one of
the four main Nyingma monasteries in Kham: Shechen, Dzogchen, Katok,
Shechen Rabjam (1910-1959?)
- one of the main masters at Shechen monastery.
Shigatse - (Zhigatse), Tibet's
second largest town, location of Tashi Lhunpo, seat of the Panchen
Shijey - one of the eight
practice lineages; brought to Tibet by Padampa Sangye.
Shri Singha College - school
of higher Buddhist studies at Dzogchen monastery.
Shri Singha - chief disciple
and successor of Manjushrimitra in the lineage of the Dzogchen teachings;
born in Khotan; his disciples were four outstanding masters: Jnanasutra,
Vimalamitra, Padmasambhava and the Tibetan translator Vairochana;
the latter three were responsible for bringing the canonical scriptures
of Dzogchen to Tibet.
siddha - perfected one, realized
one, adept who has attained realization.
Side Ornament to the Light of
Wisdom - Jokyab's collected notes on Light of
Wisdom which he received from Jamyang Drakpa of Dru.
sindhura - red or deep orange
substance often used in tantric rituals.
Single Child of the Buddhas (Sangye
Seychig) - primordial tantra that give liberation
through hearing, touching, or tasting.
Single Seat Session
- short liturgy text for Cho practice by Jamgon Kongtrul.
Chokyi Jungney (1700-1774) - eighth in the line of
Situ incarnations; great scholar and visionary, doctor and painter;
founded Palpung in 1727.
Situ Pema Nyinje Wangpo (1774-1853)
- ninth Tai Situ; root-teacher of Jamgon Kongtrul the Great.
Situ Pema Wangchok Gyalpo
(1886-1953) - enthroned by the fifteenth
Karmapa and studied with Jamgon Kongtrul and the great scholar
Zhenga. He later enthroned and offered the transmission of the Kagyu
lineage to the sixteenth Gyalwang Karmapa, Rangjung Rigpey Dorje.
Six Doctrines of Naropa -
tummo, illusory body, dream, luminosity, bardo, and phowa; subtle
yogic practices usually undertaken after yidam practice.
sixteen arhats - disciples
of the Buddha who vowed to preserve the Dharma until the coming
Smritijnana - Indian master-scholar
who entered Tibet early in the eleventh century.
Sogyal Rinpoche - incarnation
of the treasure revealer Lerab Lingpa, based in France; author of
The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying .
Solu Khumbu - district in
the northeastern mountains of Nepal.
Sonam Yeshe of Tsangsar -
former life of Chimey Dorje, Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's father; founder
of Lhalam monastery in Nangchen.
Songtsen Gampo, King (617-698)
- first great Dharma King, who prepared the way for transmission
of the teachings; regarded as an incarnation of Avalokiteshvara.
He married Bhrikuti of Nepal and Wen Cheng of China who each brought
a sacred statue of Buddha Shakyamuni to Lhasa. Songtsen Gampo built
the first Buddhist temples in Tibet, established a code of laws
based on Dharma principles, and had his minister Tonmi Sambhota
develop the Tibetan script. During his reign the translation of
Buddhist texts into Tibetan began.
Sontar Chonchok - teacher
of Chimey Dorje and close friend of Samten Gyatso.
Spontaneous Fulfillment of Wishes
- terma treasure of Chokgyur Lingpa that contains a supplication
to Padmasambhava famous under the same name.
Stupa - dome-shaped monument
housing relics of the Buddha or an accomplished master.
Subjugator of All Appearance and Existence
- one of the names of Padmasambhava.
Summary of Logic
- scholastic text composed by Mipham.
Surmang monastery - (Zurmang),
refers in Blazing Splendor to the Namgyal Tse in east Nangchen
near Tsikey monastery.
Surmang Tentrul - learned
and accomplished master at Surmang Namgyal Tse; gave later most
of the New Treasures to the sixteenth Karmapa.
Sutra and Tantra - Sutra
refers to the teachings of both Hinayana and Mahayana; Tantra refers
Sutra system - exoteric teachings
belonging to Hinayana and Mahayana that regard the path as the cause
of enlightenment, as opposed to the esoteric, tantric teachings.
Swayambhu - one of the three
main stupas of the Kathmandu valley.
swift walking or swift feet
- yogic ability to walk extremely fast, covering huge distances
in a short time, through control over the inner currents of energy.
Taklung - Kagyu monastery
150 km northwest of Lhasa founded in the twelfth century.
Taklung Tsetrul - lama of
Taksham Lingpa (b1682-?)
- also known as Nuden Dorje or Samten Lingpa; terton and emanation
of Atsara Sale, Yeshe Tsogyal's Nepalese consort.
Taktsang - Tiger's Nest,
sacred place of Padmasambhava above the Paro Valley of Bhutan.
Tana - monastery in Nangchen
originally Yelpa Kagyu, named Horse-Eared after distinctively shaped
mountain peaks above it; site of Ling Gesar's tomb.
tangka - sacred painting
on cloth; can be rolled up as a scroll.
Tantra on the Essence of Secrets
- see Guhyagarbha Tantra.
Tantra system - canonical
scripture in which the Buddha taught Vajrayana in his sambhogakaya
form. The real sense of tantra is 'continuity,' the innate buddha
nature, which is known as the 'tantra of the expressed meaning.'
The general sense of tantra is the extraordinary tantric scriptures
also known as the 'tantra of the expressing words.' Can also refer
to all the resultant teachings of Vajrayana as a whole.
tantric - of or pertaining
tantric ornaments - jewelry
and garments of silk for a peaceful deity and bone-ornaments for
tantrika - person who has
received empowerment, continues the sadhana practice and keeps the
commitments; could be a monk or nun but refers mainly to lay practitioners.
Tarthang Tulku - Nyingma
master based in the United States; prolific publisher of sacred
Tashi Chimey - Tulku Urgyen
Tashi Gang - two days east
from Thimphu, the capital of Bhutan.
Tashi Lhunpo - monastery,
seat of the Panchen Lama in Shigatse; founded in 1447 by Gedun Drub
(1391-1475), Tsongkhapa's nephew and disciple; used to house up
to four thousand monks.
Tashi Özer, Khenchen (1836-1910)
- abbot of Paljor and Palpung monasteries and a student of Jamgon
Tendzin Dorje - previous
life of Chokyi Nyima Rinpoche; lama at Drong monastery near Nagchukha.
Tendzin Rabgye - healer and
accomplished master from one of the old temples of the Barom Kagyu.
Tenga Rinpoche - master from
Benchen monastery in Nangchen; close friend of Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche.
Tenga Tulku - brother of
Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche.
Tengyur - collection of translated
commentaries by Indian masters on the Buddha's teachings; second
part of the Tibetan Canon in 213 volumes.
Tenpa Tsering - King of Derge
at the time of Situ Chokyi Jungney.
Tentrul of Surmang - see
Terdag Lingpa (1646-1714)
- Gyurmey Dorje, built Mindrol Ling in Central Tibet, one of the
most important Nyingma monasteries.
terdag - guardian deity of
a specific terma treasure.
terma objects - concealed
treasures of many kinds, including texts, ritual objects, relics,
and natural objects.
terma - transmission through
concealed treasures hidden, mainly by Padmasambhava and Yeshe Tsogyal,
to be discovered at the proper time by a terton for the benefit
of future disciples; one of the two chief traditions of the Nyingma
school, the other being Kahma; said to continue even long after
the Vinaya of the Buddha has disappeared.
Tersey Tulku (1887/9-1955/7)
- see Uncle Tersey.
terton - revealer of hidden
treasures, concealed mainly by Padmasambhava and Yeshe Tsogyal.
Thrangu monastery - one of
the main Kagyu monasteries in Nangchen; seat of the Tralek Jamgon
and Thrangu Rinpoche incarnations.
three inner tantras - Mahayoga,
Anu Yoga, and Ati Yoga.
three kayas of buddhahood
- dharmakaya (body of enlightened qualities), the first of the three
kayas, is devoid of constructs, like space. Sambhogakaya (body of
perfect enjoyment) is the semi-manifest form of the buddhas endowed
with five perfections: perfect teacher, retinue, place, teaching
and time; perceptible only to bodhisattvas on the ten levels. Nirmanakaya
(emanation body or form of magical apparition) is the aspect of
enlightenment that can be perceived by ordinary beings.
three levels of precepts
- see triple-vow vajra holder.
Three Roots - guru, yidam
and dakini. The guru is the root of blessings, the yidam of accomplishment,
and the dakini of activity. They are usually three types of sadhana
Three Sections of the Great Perfection
- (Dzogchen Desum); terma revealed by Chokgyur Lingpa. See also
Mind, Space and Instruction Sections.
three times - past, present
throne holder - current head
of a major monastery.
Tilopa - great Indian siddha,
teacher of Naropa, and father of the Kagyu lineage.
Tishi Repa - Darma Wangchuk's
disciple; early master in the Barom Kagyu lineage.
tishi - imperial preceptor;
Chinese title for highest religious rank. Below the tishi are two
masters of the pakshi rank, and each pakshi oversees two dignitaries
with the position known as goshir. [tur]
tokden - full-time meditators
who never cut their braided hair; often they are monks.
Tolung valley - location
of Tsurphu in Central Tibet, some 70 km west of Lhasa.
torma - implement used in
tantric ceremonies; can also refer to a food offering to protectors
of the Dharma or unfortunate spirits.
town yogi - lay practitioner.
Tsadra Rinchen Drak - The
hermitage of Jamgon Kongtrul above Palpung monastery in Kham.
Tramdruk - (Traduk), early
temple in the Yarlung valley near Lhasa, built by Songtsen Gampo.
transmission - direct imparting
of knowledge from master to student in an unbroken line of succession
treasure revealer - see terton.
Treasury of Dharmadhatu
- one of Longchenpa's famous Seven Treasuries. Translated
by Richard Barron as: Precious Treasury of the Basic Space of
Phenomena and a Treasure Trove of Scriptural Transmission,
Treasury of Knowledge
- (Sheja Dzo/Sheja Kunkyab), Jamgon Kongtrul's unique encyclopedic
masterpiece embodying the entire range of Buddhist teachings. See
Myriad Worlds, (Snow Lion Publications).
Treasury of Nyingma Songs
- compilation by Kyungtrul of spiritual songs by masters of the
Treasury of Oral Instructions
- Jamgon Kongtrul's compilation of the most vital instructions from
the eight chariots of the Practice Lineage.
Treasury of Precious Termas
- (Rinchen Terdzo), Jamgon Kongtrul's collection in 63 volumes of
the most important revealed termas of Padmasambhava, Vimalamitra,
Vairotsana and their closest disciples; gathered by with the help
of Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo.
triple-vow vajra holder -
outer level of ethical precepts, inner level of bodhisattva trainings,
and innermost tantric level of a vidyadhara. Someone who observes
all three is a 'vajra holder of the threefold precepts'.
Trisong Deutsen - see King
tromter - terma treasure
revealed in full public.
Trulshik Rinpoche - chief
disciple of Dudjom Rinpoche and Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche; monastery
(Tubten Choling) in the Solu Khumbu, northeastern Nepal.
Tsagah - Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's
tsampa - staple of Tibetan
diet comprised of roasted barley flour.
Tsangsar Dranang - the homeland
of Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche, accessible only by horse, one day from
Lachab, Fortress Peak, or Dechen Ling.
Tsangsar - family name of
Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche and an ancient kingdom in Nangchen.
Tsang-Yang Gyamtso - (Gebchak
Tokden), chief disciple of the first Tsoknyi; founded numerous nunneries
Tsari-like Jewel Rock - (Tsadra
Rinchen Drak), located on the slope above the Palpung monastery
in Kham; extensively described in The Autobiography of Jamgon
Kongtrul's and in Ngawang Zangpo, Sacred Ground: Jamgon
Kongtrul on "Pilgrimage and Sacred Geography," (Snow Lion Publications).
tsa-tsa - small clay image
of a buddha or stupa, stamped from a mold.
Tsechu - monastery adjacent
to the royal palace in Nangchen; seat of the Trulshik
Adeu and the Tsoknyi incarnations.
Tsele Natsok Rangdrol - (b.
1608) master of the Kagyu and Nyingma schools; reincarnation of
Vairotsana; author of Mirror of Mindfulness and Lamp
Tseringma - female guardian
of Chokgyur Lingpa's treasures; often depicted with her four sisters
riding on various animals.
Tsewang Drakpa - see Wangchok
Dorje, the second son of Chokgyur Lingpa.
Tsewang Norbu (1856-1915/6)
- Chokgyur Lingpa's first son and lineage holder; teacher of Samten
Tsichu River - flows between
Tsikey and Surmang monasteries in Nangchen.
Tsikey Chokling - see Chokling
Tsikey monastery - one of
the three main 'seats' of Chokgyur Lingpa; located at the confluence
of the Tsichu and Kechu rivers ten minutes inside the Tibetan Autonomous
Region east of Nangchen (Qinghai).
tsiu - spirit of recurring
Tsogyal Lhatso - Life-Lake
of Yeshe Tsogyal; situated at Drakda some 20 km from Samye.
Tsogyal - see Yeshe Tsogyal.
- Drubwang Tsoknyi the first; an emanation of Milarepa's disciple,
Rechungpa, and the terton Ratna Lingpa; contemporary of Khyentse,
Kongtrul and Chokling.
Tsurphu monastery - (pronounced
tsur-pu), monastic seat of the Karmapa incarnations in Central Tibet,
situated in 65 km west of Lhasa.
Barchey Kunsel - Chokgyur Lingpa's most famous
terma, revealed with Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo, consisting of more
than ten volumes.
Tukdrub Trinley Nyingpo
- sadhana of Padmasambhava.
Tukdrub - short
for Tukdrub Barchey Kunsel.
Tulku Pema Wangyal - Taklung
Tsetrul Rinpoche; Nyingma master living in Dordogne, France.
tulku - incarnation, manifesting
the spiritual qualities of a previous enlightened teacher.
tummo or tummo yoga - practice
to develop the blissful inner heat to refine the subtle vajra body,
consume obscurations and to bring forth realization. One of the
Six Doctrines of Naropa; practiced primarily in the Kagyu lineage.
Uddiyana - country to the
north-west of ancient India where Padmasambhava was born on a lotus
Uncle Sang-Ngak (1885/6-1949?)
- uncle of Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche.
Uncle Tersey (1887/9-1955/7)
- Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's uncle; Tersey means son of the terton.
Universal Panacea (Karpo Chiktub)
- tantra that give liberation through hearing, touching, or tasting.
Vairochana - of the five
families, the chief buddha of the tathagata family.
- (Heart Essence of Vairotsana; Vairo Nyingtig ), synonyms
for Dzogchen Desum.
Vairotsana - sublime and
matchless translator of numerous texts of sutra and tantra at the
time of King Trisong Deutsen.
Vajra Club of the Lord of Secrets
- (Sangdag Dorje Bechon), the deity Vajrapani from Chokgyur Lingpa's
vajra holder - of the threefold
precepts: see triple-vow vajra holder.
vajra master - master adept
in the rituals and meaning of Vajrayana, from whom one receives
tantric teaching and empowerment; can also refer to the master who
presides over a tantric ritual.
Vajra Varahi - female buddha;
sambhogakaya manifestation of Samantabhadri; one of the chief yidam
deities of the Sarma Schools, as well as a wisdom dakini.
vajra - as adjective connotes
adamantine, diamond, indestructible; specifically it means of or
pertaining to Vajrayana.
Vajradhara - dharmakaya buddha
of the Sarma Schools; refers also to one's personal teacher of Vajrayana
or to the all-embracing buddha nature.
Vajrapani - one of the eight
great bodhisattvas; chief compiler of the Vajrayana teachings; also
known as Lord of Secrets.
Vajrasattva recitation -
chanting of the mantra in hundred syllables; one of the preliminary
Vajrasattva - sambhogakaya
buddha who embodies all the five families; source of purification
Vajrayana - vehicle of tantric
teachings; training in seeing phenomena as display of primordial
purity. The six classes of Vajrayana tantras teach this in an increasingly
direct and profound way. The gateway to the Vajrayana is the empowerment,
which is given by the spiritual master.
victory banner of realization
- sign of having overcome all veils that cover the buddha-nature.
vidyadhara - realized master
on one of four stages on the tantric path of Mahayoga.
view of the inner yogas -
body is deity, voice mantra, and mind is samadhi.
view, meditation and conduct (and
fruition) - the philosophical orientation, the act of growing
accustomed to that, the implementation of that insight during the
activities of daily life, and the final outcome resulting from such
training. Each of the nine vehicles has its particular definition
of view, meditation, conduct and fruition.
Vimalamitra - Dzogchen master
who was invited to Tibet by King Trisong Deutsen; one of three main
forefathers of the Dzogchen teachings, especially Nyingtig,
in Tibet. Vimalamitra means 'Flawless Kinsman.'
vivid presence - clear visualization
of the deity.
wakefulness, original, luminous
- (yeshe), intrinsic quality of knowing and its ways of functioning
as the five wisdoms.
Wangchok Dorje (1860/2-86)
- son of Chokgyur Lingpa; incarnation of the Indian king Jah.
Wangchuk Dorje (1556-1603)
- the ninth Karmapa.
Wangdu - Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche's
brother-in-law; a Central Tibetan aristocrat.
wang - religious dignity;
Way of a Bodhisattva
- The Indian master Shantideva's famous work on Mahayana training
wisdom protector - enlightened
wisdom-body - ethereal form,
beyond the confines of a material body.
Wish-Fulfilling Jewel - highly
honorific way of addressing the Karmapa; also shows one's deep respect
Yarlung valley - south of
Lhasa in Central Tibet; associated with the early kings; cradle
of Tibetan civilization.
Yeshe Tsogyal - close female
disciple of Padmasambhava and compiler of his teachings.
yidam - deity used in tantric
practice; could be Avalokiteshvara or Vajrasattva.
yidam practice - training
in all sights, sounds and thoughts as being deity, mantra and samadhi.
Yolmo - (Helambhu), sacred
valley three days walk north of Kathmandu.
Yonga - close disciple of
Yongdzin - Druk Kharag Yongdzin
Rinpoche, aka Tokden Paksam Gyatso. Drukpa Kagyu master. Among his
living disciples is Soktse Rinpoche.
Yongey Mingyur Dorje (1628/41-1708)
- terton at the time of the tenth Karmapa, Choying Dorje (1605-74).
Yudra Nyingpo - Vairotsana's
chief lineage holder; one of Padmasambhava's twenty-five disciples.
The reincarnation of Lekdrub of Tsang, born in the region of Gyalmo
Tsawarong, he was brought up by Vairotsana and reached perfection
in both learning and yogic accomplishment. He is counted among the
108 lotsawas and is one of the main lineage holders of the Mind
Section of Dzogchen.
Yutok Gonpo (708-833) - famous
Tibetan physician and writer.
zhidag - local deity; powerful
spirit of the region.
Ziling - Travelogues variously
spell this city on Nangchen's north-eastern frontier of with China
as Sining, Xining, or Xilling.