Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo Series
Courtesy of Himalayan Art Resources
You who have awakened your enlightened nature, purified through past aspirations,
Cared for by your lamas and special deities,
Your activity is like a medicine for the entire teaching of Buddha,
Jamyang Khyentsé Wangpo, to you I pray!
Texts by and about the great Rimé (“nonsectarian”) master Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo ('jam dbyangs mkhyen brtse'i dbang po, 1820–1892), one of the most influential figures of recent times:
- A Few Words of Commentary to Clarify The Essence of Nectar: Graduated Stages of the Path—Advice for Renunciant Meditators | Advice
Khyentse Wangpo composed this commentary to The Essence of Nectar: Graduated Stages of the Path (lam rim bdud rtsi'i snying po) at the request of Chöying Palden, who had also requested the original root verses. The text covers every stage of the paths according to the vehicles of the transcendent perfections (pāramitā) and secret mantra.
These verses of advice for renunciant meditators (spong ba bsam gtan pa) cover the entire Buddhist path, from instructions on following a spiritual friend through to the most advanced generation and perfection phase practices.
Alak Zenkar summarizes the remarkable life and liberation of Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo (1820–1892), showing how he mastered the so-called 'eight great chariots of the practice lineage' (sgrub brgyud shing rta chen po brgyad) and received the seven special transmissions or 'descents' (bka' babs bdun). Zenkar Rinpoche also briefly summarizes Khyentse Wangpo's collected writings, which are divided into nine main categories.
A brief text summarizing the five great logical arguments of the Madhyamaka, or Middle Way: 1) the investigation of the cause: the Diamond Splinters; 2) the investigation of the result: refuting existent or non-existent effects; 3) the investigation of both: refuting the four permutations of arising; 4) the investigation of essential identity: ‘neither one nor many’; and 5) the logical argument of Great Interdependence.
- A Few Remarks: An Explanation of the Praise to Noble Mañjuśrī known as Glorious Wisdom’s Excellent Qualities | Mañjuśrī
A clear and concise commentary on the words of the most famous of praises to Mañjuśrī, Glorious Wisdom's Excellent Qualities (dPal ye shes yon tan bzang po), attributed to the Indian master Ācārya Vajrāyudha/Vajraśastra.
- A Shortcut to the Siddhi of Immortality: Guru Yoga of Union with the Three Deities of Long Life | Guru Yoga
A brief history of the sacred image of Tārā, the Wish-Fulfilling Wheel (yid bzhin 'khor lo), in Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo’s residence, known as ‘The Garden of Immortality’ ('chi med grub pa'i dga' tshal), in Dzongsar Monastery, Derge, East Tibet.
Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo recounts the origin of the teachings of Siṃhamukhā and how they have been subsequently passed down to him. He closely follows the story associated with the lineage of Bari Lotsawa (ba ri lugs).
- A Shower of Great Bliss: A Lineage Prayer for the Guru Yoga based on Vajrasattva | Longchen Nyingtik
- Source of Magnificent Blessing: A Prayer to the Lineage of the Secret Practice of the Great Compassionate One, Natural Liberation of Suffering | Longchen Nyingtik
- Supplement to the Omniscient Ngorchen Kunga Zangpo’s Prayer to the Lineage of Parting from the Four Attachments | Lineage Prayers
- The Flower of Faith: A Prayer to the Twenty-Five Founders of Buddha's Teachings in Tibet | Nonsectarianism
- The Shower of Great Bliss: A Prayer to the Lineage of the Female Awareness-Holder (Yumka) | Lineage Prayers
Jamyang Khyentse composed this prayer for perfecting the Seven Points of Mind Training (blo sbyong don bdun ma) when he was in the presence of the famous Atiśa statue at the Tārā Temple in Nyethang (snye thang). The section headings were added by Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche.
- Nectar of the Heart: An Experiential Song of Parting from the Four Attachments | Parting from the Four Attachments
This experiential song (nyams dbyangs) based on 'Parting from the Four Attachments' (zhen pa bzhi bral) was composed in the cave of Rangjung Dorje, where Mañjuśrī is said to have delivered the original teaching to the Sakya patriarch Sachen Kunga Nyingpo (1092–1158).
- Words of Advice on Accomplishing Immortality: An Extremely Concise Daily Practice Uniting the Short Lineages of Amitāyus and Hayagrīva | Longevity
This concise instruction for accomplishing longevity (tshe sgrub) is said to be an abridgement of Thangtong Gyalpo's (1361–1485?) original sādhana. According to the colophon, Khyentse Wangpo composed the practice in a meditation cave used by Thangtong Gyalpo himself.
- A Profound Concentration of Nectar: Essentialized Stages of Visualization for the Preliminary Practices of the Heart Essence of the Vast Expanse (Longchen Nyingtik) | Ngöndro
This guide to the stages of visualization for the Longchen Nyingtik preliminary practices (sngon 'gro) is, as Khyentse Wangpo himself puts it, "brief, clear and essential." Some of its instructions differ slightly from those given by Patrul Rinpoche, so that it represents a distinct commentarial tradition.
This is a version of A Profound Concentration of Nectar, into which the root text of the Longchen Nyingtik preliminaries has been inserted. The text also includes several prayers that were not included in Jikmé Trinlé Özer’s original version.
This brief liturgy for offering the eight auspicious substances (bkra shis rdzas brgyad) and seven emblems of royalty (rgyal srid sna bdun) is often recited as part of consecration and longevity rites.
This four-line prayer is sometimes used for the accumulation of maṇḍala offerings in the Longchen Nyingtik tradition. Khenpo Ngawang Palzang, for example, recommends accumulating this prayer seventy thousand times (following thirty thousand recitations of the three-kāya maṇḍala from the Longchen Nyingtik).
- The Offering Clouds Of the Indestructible Ladies of Sound: Concise Garland of Offerings of the Sixteen Vajra Goddesses | Longchen Nyingtik
Jamyang Khyentse wrote this twelve-line prayer to Patrul Rinpoche during the festival of Chökhor Düchen in 1860. The text identifies Patrul as an emanation of Śāntideva and the early Dzogchen adept Aro Yeshe Jungne, and praises his qualities of renunciation, bodhicitta and wisdom.
- Prayer to Root and Lineage Masters, and the Assembly of Deity, Ḍākinīs and Dharma Protectors of the Sakya Lineage | Sakya
- The Sweet-Sounding Song that Fulfils All Aims: A Prayer to Noble Tārā Combined with Her Root Mantra | Tārā
Prayers and Practices
This popular liturgy for saving the lives of animals includes practices of taking refuge and generating bodhicitta, as well as the recitation of mantras and dhārāṇīs, visualization, and prayers of auspiciousness, dedication and aspiration.
- The Rain of Virtue and Goodness: A Short Practice for Consecrating Representations of Enlightened Body, Speech and Mind | Consecration
This popular rite of consecration (rab gnas) includes the standard elements of bathing, drying, and dressing (for which it draws upon the Bodhicaryāvatāra), before inviting the wisdom deities, sealing them within the image, empowerment, opening of the eyes, transformation, offering and praise, and prayers to remain until the very ends of the aeon.
- Wisdom's Bestowal: A Way to Accumulate the Recitation of the Tantra 'Chanting the Names of Mañjuśrī' (Mañjuśrī Nāma Saṃgīti) | Mañjuśrī
For this 'means of recitation' (bklag thabs), which provides additional prayers and practices to be said before and after the root text of Chanting the Names of Mañjuśrī (Mañjuśrī-nāma-saṃgīti; 'jam dpal mtshan brjod), Khyentse Wangpo relied upon and adapted the writings of the great Sakya patriarchs Jetsün Drakpa Gyaltsen and Sakya Paṇḍita.
Prayers to Guru Rinpoche
- A Beautiful and Wondrous Udumbara Garland: A Supplication and Summary of the Chronicles of Padma, The Life and Liberation of the Precious Guru of Uḍḍiyāna | Guru Rinpoche Prayers
This prayer beautifully summarizes the Padma Kathang (The Chronicles of Padma), one of the most famous and influential of Guru Padmasambhava's many biographies. It reveals how Guru Rinpoche manifests in an infinite variety of forms in order to protect and spread the Buddhadharma.
- A Brief Prayer to the Precious Master Padmākara for Swiftly Fulfilling Wishes and Dispelling Obstacles | Guru Rinpoche Prayers
- The Chariot of the Vidyādharas: An Aspiration Prayer for Travelling to the Realm of Lotus Light | Guru Rinpoche Prayers
This poetic prayer relates the Lotus Light (padma 'od) pure realm of Guru Padmasambhava to the four visions of Dzogchen practice and contains the aspiration that we may all be reborn there, to advance through the four stages of a vidyādhara and swiftly reach the level of the Lake-born Guru himself.
These verses to be recited before and after prayers to Guru Padmasambhava, especially the famous Prayer in Seven Chapters (le'u bdun ma), include the practices of taking refuge and arousing bodhicitta, a seven-branch offering, the generation and dissolution of a visualisation, and the dedication of merit.
- The Heart of Blessings: A Brief Anthology of Prayers to Guru Rinpoche and the Twenty-Five Disciples, the King and Subjects | Guru Rinpoche Prayers
This is a complete set of practices, including taking refuge, generating bodhicitta, visualization, invocation, seven-branch offering, heartfelt prayer—addressed to Guru Padmasambhava, his various manifestations and twenty-five disciples—mantra recitation, and dissolution.
- Turning Back Obstacles and Adverse Circumstances: A Prayer to Orgyen Rinpoche, Embodiment of All Sources of Refuge | Guru Rinpoche Prayers
A prayer to the Precious Guru of Oḍḍiyāna as the embodiment of all sources of refuge (skyabs gnas kun 'dus) in order to avert all forms of obstacle and hindrance, on the outer, inner and innermost (or 'secret') levels.
- Wish-Fulfilling Feast of Siddhis: An Aspiration Prayer to Orgyen Rinpoche, the Precious Master of Oddiyana | Guru Rinpoche Prayers
Written in 1850, this is a prayer to the guru, who is understood to be inseparable from Guru Padmasambhava and the true nature of mind, and an aspiration to be reborn in the Lotus Light pure realm, if not already liberated during this life or when clear light dawns at the moment of death.
- Activities for Uncovering Primordial Wisdom from the Chimé Pakmé Nyingtik, ‘The Heart Essence of the Sublime Lady of Immortality’ | Chimé Pakmé Nyingtik
The longer sādhana of The Heart Essence of the Sublime Lady of Immortality, or Chimé Pakmé Nyingtik ('chi med 'phags ma'i snying thig), the popular long-life practice of Tāra in union with the Lord of the Dance, which Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo discovered as a mind treasure in 1855.
- Fast Track to Happiness and Peace: A Very Brief Meditation and Recitation of the Medicine Buddha | Medicine Buddha
- Moonlight of Pacifying Amṛta: A Daily Visualization and Recitation for the Dispeller of All Samaya Corruptions and Pollutions | Ucchuṣma
A practice of Damdrip Nyepa Kunsel (dam grib nyes pa kun sel)—which derives from the revelations of Trengpo Sherab Özer (1518–1584)—based on the deity Ucchuṣma (sme brtsegs), with added preliminary and concluding sections and further instructions on purifying samaya defilements.
- The Essential Activity Manual for the Awesome Ones’ Assembly, the Heart Practice of Vidyādharas, from the Heart Essence of the Vast Expanse | Longchen Nyingtik
This version of the Palchen Düpa sādhana was arranged by Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo from the original revelation for daily use or for when the practice has to be done repeatedly in a single day, such as during a drupchen (sgrub chen). It is of a medium size, shorter than the full revelation but longer than the daily practice which Khyentse Wangpo also compiled.
- The Heart of Wish-Fulfilling Jewels: A Brief Practice for Paying Homage and Making Offerings to the Buddha together with his retinue of Arhats | Sixteen Arhats
- The Single Mudrā: A Daily Practice for the Awesome Ones’ Assembly (Palchen Düpa), the Heart Practice of the Awareness-Holders | Longchen Nyingtik
- The Single-Form Daily Practice from Chimé Pakmé Nyingtik (The Heart Essence of the Sublime Lady of Immortality) | Chimé Pakmé Nyingtik
- The Visualization of the Four Goddesses of the Great Compassionate One, Natural Liberation of Suffering | Longchen Nyingtik
The Vajrakīla Root Tantra Section (or Fragment) (Tōh. 439), the remains of a much larger Vajrakīla tantra, was discovered and translated into Tibetan by Sakya Paṇḍita (1182–1251). According to the text's colophon, it was Guru Padmasambhava who brought the original to Tibet. The tantra contains several famous verses that appear in most Vajrakīla sādhanas and is the only Vajrakīla text included within the Kangyur. The edition translated here includes a colophon by Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo and benedictory verse by Jamyang Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö.
These commonly cited verses of commitment (dam bca' ba) occur several times in the Precious Treasury of Revelations (rin chen gter mdzod) and are also to be found in the collected writings of Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo, Chokgyur Lingpa and Tertön Sogyal. The translation here is based on Mipham's commentary.
- A Glorious Garland of the Two Accomplishments: An Abridged Feast-Offering for the Female Practice of the Ḍākinī | Longchen Nyingtik
- Harmonious Clouds of Sublime and Lasting Bliss: A Vajra Song for the Tsok Feast Offering to Venerable and Exalted Vajrayoginī | Vajrayoginī
- Song and Dance to Delight the Ḍākas and Ḍākinīs: An Aspiration for the Sixfold Satisfaction of the Maṇḍala of the Feast-Gathering | Tsok
Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo composed this short aspiration prayer to be recited during the gaṇacakra. The prayer invokes the goal of the gaṇacakra, a six-fold satisfaction (tshim pa drug) of those assembled, i.e., the deities, teacher and vajra-brothers and sisters. Khyentse Wangpo dedicates one verse to each of these six satisfactions and concludes the prayer with an additional seventh verse of dedication.