Lama Yangtik Inventory

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Longchen Rabjam

Longchen Rabjam

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Circle of the Sun

Inventory to the Lama Yangtik

by Longchen Rabjam

Homage to glorious Samantabhadra!

Primordial protector, victorious one Glacial Ocean,
Whose nature, knowledge and love, is hard to fathom,
Source of happiness for beings until the end of time—
To you, at the very outset, I pay homage.

Among the vast secret teachings of the buddhas,
This, the path of clear light, the definitive essence,
The message of the many secret heart-essence texts,
A most profound wish-granting jewel, I shall now clarify.

Secret, most secret, most profound and wondrous,
One plus four, plus eleven sets of three—[1]
Dispelling the darkness of ignorance for the fortunate,
These are the sections when the teaching is subdivided:
The history and the four empowerment rites,
The Ocean Trilogy and the Instructional Trilogy,
Supporting Text Trilogy and Cloud-Bank Trilogy,
The Sky Trilogy and Nectar Trilogy,
Lamp Trilogy and Wheel Trilogy,
Hindrance-Dispelling Trilogy and Jewel Trilogy,
Mirror Trilogy and Aural Transmission Trilogy,
Plus the Trilogy of the Heart-Fragment Sādhanas.

What follows are the excellent explanations
Of the purpose of each, so keep them in mind.

The history called The Jewel Rosary demonstrates
The wonder and trustworthiness of the definitive teachings.

The fourfold empowerment rite serves to mature the fortunate.
The elaborate vase empowerment brings attainment of the vajra body
And mastery of the meaning of the union of generation and perfection.
The unelaborate secret empowerment brings attainment of vajra speech
And mastery of the syllable chakra that induces the warmth of wisdom.
The extremely unelaborate knowledge-wisdom empowerment
Brings attainment of vajra mind and access to the meaning of great bliss.
The utterly unelaborate precious word empowerment
Brings attainment of primordial wisdom and leads to the state of primordial exhaustion.
It is crucial, therefore, to receive empowerment at the outset.

The Ocean Trilogy brings the swift attainment of siddhis.
Within this, the Ocean of Liberation on Samaya
Delineates what to adopt and avoid in order to purify the mindstream.
The Wish-Fulfilling Ocean on Tsok Offering
Brings twofold accumulation and attainment of the two kind of siddhi.
The Ocean of Siddhis on Guru Service
Causes infinite blessings and realization to dawn within the mind.
Therefore, these works are of the utmost importance.

The Essential Instruction Trilogy brings liberation after ripening.
Within this, the Essential Instruction on the Preliminary: Sevenfold Mind Training
Functions as a stepladder for accessing the higher meaning.
The Essential Instruction on the Main Practice: the Luminous Essence
Brings direct access to the meaning of the essence of the sugatas.
The Essential Instruction on Trekchö: Revitalization in the Primordial State
Eliminates misconceptions and clinging to extremes within the natural condition.
Therefore, these works are just like the heart.

The Supporting Text Trilogy generates confidence in the practice.
Within this, the Supporting Text on Trekchö: Immaculate Sky
Removes hopes and fears about freedom from activity and effort.
The Supporting Text on Tögal: Sun, Moon and Constellations
Brings attainment of the stronghold in which the self-appearance of luminosity increases.
The Supporting Text on Liberation Upon Wearing: Spontaneous Fulfilment of Wishes
Is an aid to direct realization, progress and liberation in the bardo.

The Cloud-Bank Trilogy provides supplemental instructions for mind training,
A means of elevating those with inferior faculties to a higher level.
Within this, the Cloud-Banks of Bliss-Emptiness Nectar
Induces union with great luminosity in an experience of great bliss.
The Cloud-Banks of Wisdom: Practice of Prāṇa
Induces the experience of luminosity, non-dual clarity and emptiness.
The Cloud-Banks of Non-Conceptual Space
Induces the great dharmatā luminosity beyond the ordinary mind.
Therefore, these works provide crucial assistance.

The Lamp Trilogy clarifies what is most profound.
Within this, the Wisdom Lamp of Ground Appearance
Clearly reveals how the original nature unfolds.
The Luminous Lamp Clarifying the Meaning of Examples
Reveals the the essence of the practice of the ground, path and fruition.
The Lamp of the Key Points of Practice
Reveals the methods for applying the key points of essential wisdom.
These three texts are extremely important.
Since they are as indispensable as the heart or eyes,
Bring them together by relating one to another.
Like a filigree of turquoise upon precious gold,
They make essential reality shine bright and beautiful.

The Wheel Trilogy brings continuous union with clear light.
Within this, the Dharmatā Wheel of the Three Crucial Points
Reveals the essence of the key points of posture and gaze.
The Luminosity Wheel Beyond the Duality of Day and Night
Cuts the continuity of habitual patterns, while awake and in dreams.
The Wisdom Wheel That Encapsulates What Is Most Profound
Clarifies the sequence of meditative absorption during the day and night.
Therefore, since these three most profound texts
Are extremely important at the time of practice,
The wise should treat them as familiar acquaintances.

The Hindrance-Dispelling Trilogy enables completion of the practice.
Within this, the Ambrosial Tree That Dispels Hindrances of the Body
Eliminates sickness of the four elements and balances the subtle constitution.
The Illuminating Lamp That Dispels Hindrances of the Gateways
Explains the methods for treating the eyes, gateways to the arising of clear light.
The Immaculate Wisdom That Dispels Hindrances of the Mind
Eliminates faults in samādhi and reveals the wisdom of rigpa.
Cherish these texts as dear companions.

The Jewel Trilogy brings supreme and common attainments.
Within this, the Wish-Fulfilling Jewel of the Heart-Practice of the Guru
Confers the blessings and attainments of the realizing view and meditation.
The Wish-Fulfilling Jewel of the Heart-Practice of the Yidam
Brings the attainment of immortal life.
The Wish-Fulfilling Jewel of the Heart-Practice of the Ḍākinī
Secures twofold benefit through the four types of activity.
Therefore, since these three exceptional texts
Are indispensable as aids to accomplishment,
Fortunate ones should meditate upon them constantly
In the phases of yoga during the four sessions of the day and night.

In this way, hindrances and obstacles will be pacified
And you will swiftly gain supreme and common siddhis.

The Mirror Trilogy secures the purpose of this and future lives.
Within this, the Mindfulness Mirror of Introduction
Brings confidence during this life and liberation in the bardo.
The Mindfulness Mirror That Clarifies Indications of Death
Identifies the time when a yogi must abandon the aggregates.
The Mindfulness Mirror of the Most Profound Death Ransom
Reveals phenomena of this life that prolong the freedoms and advantages.
These works are therefore of the utmost importance.

The Oral Transmission Trilogy sets out the instructions for the bardos.
Within this, the Minor Oral Transmission of Self-Manifest Wisdom
Primarily clarifies the practice for the present.
The Intermediate Oral Transmission of Self-Manifest Luminosity
Clarifies the instructions for identifying the bardo experiences.
The Major Oral Transmission of Self-Manifest Definitive Meaning
Clarifies the teachings that support all that the other texts discuss.
Therefore, these three exceptional texts
Are extremely important as keys to the secret essence.

The earlier cycles are instructions from the illustrative transmission,
Mainly revealing techniques for gaining liberation in this lifetime.
The Oral Transmission trilogy contains instructions from the direct transmission
And primarily reveals the techniques for gaining liberation in the bardo.
These two approaches should complement one another.
They belong to the same system, so the difference is taught to be
In terms of whether or not there are Secret Unexcelled scriptures.
'Where is this from?' you might wonder. The Illuminating Lamp[2]
Says that this itself is related to the unwritten aural transmission.
Therefore, these three texts of the profound aural transmission
Are the actual Heart-Essence and teachings for liberation in the bardo.
Understand that the label of "secret cycle" is simply nominal.
The same applies to the three Essence texts as well.[3]
It is crucial, therefore, to be fully aware of this point.

To guard this Dharma treasury consisting of such texts,
The victorious ones and vidyādharas have appointed
An unfathomable ocean of oath-bound protectors.
The trilogy of sādhana rites concerns the principal ones.
The Heart-Fragment Secret Rite of the Mamos
Wreaks havoc on those who obstruct us and the protection of Dharma.
The Heart-Fragment Secret Rite of Za Rāhula
Crushes to dust and annihilates enemies and hostile forces.
The Heart-Fragment Secret Rite of Damchen
Brings magical assistance beyond imagining from obedient servants.
Therefore, since these three exceptional sādhana texts
Are arranged as advice, raw guidance and practice,
Constantly apply yourself to offering praise and propitiation.
Your own and your retinue’s resources will increase,
All obstacles will be dispelled and you’ll gain a trove of siddhis.
That is why they surpass in quality even the king of jewels.

In this way, these thirty-five sections of the teachings,[4]
A cycle of the supreme secret essence Great Perfection,
Fully explain all the extremely profound key points.
There are a great many tantras, commentaries and instructions,
But there is no greater summary of them all than this.

These days, when life is short and resources limited,
It is hard for those of meagre fortune to find instructions.
There are many texts, but the whole teaching is rarely seen.
Even when it is encountered, it is not integrated.
Therefore, I, the yogi Longchen Rabjam Zangpo,
Have set out this succinct teaching,
The precious essence that accomplishes all aims,
The most profound essence of the wish-fulfilling jewel,
On the slopes of Gangri Thökar
For the benefit of my fortunate followers.

Through the virtue of this, may all those in the three realms of existence
Cross over, all at once, the ocean of saṃsāra,
And naturally and spontaneously arrive at the primordial ground
As the dharma sovereign, the great blissful Samantabhadra.

This concludes the inventory entitled Circle of the Sun, composed at the place of Orgyen Dzong on the slopes of Gangri Thökar by Longchen Rabjam, a yogin of the supreme vehicle.

The thirty-five sections of the teachings outlined in this inventory are hereby entrusted to the glorious Mantra Protectress,[5] the planetary spirit Rāhula and Damchen Dorje Lekpa. Should the texts become corrupted, inflict punishment and slaughter! Do not divulge this to those who lack fortune. Entrust it to the fortunate! Samaya. Virtue! Virtue! Virtue!

| Translated by Adam Pearcey with the generous support of the Tsadra Foundation, 2024.


Tibetan Edition

klong chen rab 'byams pa dri med 'od zer. "kha byang nyi ma’i snying po" In snying thig ya bzhi. 13 vols. Delhi: Sherab Gyaltsen Lama, 1975. Vol. 1: 76–84 (4.5 folios)

Version: 1.1-20240326

  1. Longchenpa goes on to list thirteen—rather than eleven—sets of three, or trilogies. He does not include the Essence Trilogy (snying po skor gsum) or the Supplement Trilogy (yang yig skor gsum), which are mentioned in his other inventory for the Lama Yangtik collection entitled The Essence of Luminosity. Note too that in that text the Heart-Fragment Trilogy is referred to as the Razor Trilogy.  ↩

  2. See Vimalamitra, rgyud kyi khong don bsdus pa sgron ma snang byed, which is part of the Vima Nyingtik.  ↩

  3. An apparent reference to the Essence Trilogy (snying po skor gsum), which is part of the Lama Yangtik but not included among the trilogies listed above.  ↩

  4. The eleven trilogies plus the history and empowerment sections.  ↩

  5. Ekajaṭī  ↩

Vajrayāna Buddhism places restrictions on the reading and practice of certain texts, which are intended only for those who have received the requisite empowerments, transmissions and instructions.

If you are unsure as to whether you are entitled to read or practice a particular text please consult a qualified lineage-holder.

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