Practices › Sādhanas
Courtesy of Shechen Archives
A series of sādhanas (sgrub thabs) or 'means of attainment', arranged alphabetically by subject:
- The Sublime Path to Immortality: The Quintessence of Profoundly Secret Pith Instructions on Attaining Vajra Longevity by Dudjom Rinpoche
- Words of Advice on Accomplishing Immortality: An Extremely Concise Daily Practice Uniting the Short Lineages of Amitāyus and Hayagrīva by Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo
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.
- The Method of Accomplishment of Ārya Avalokiteśvara: The Practice of Great Compassion & Mahāmudrā in Union by Chögyal Pakpa Lodrö Gyaltsen
This brief sādhana of Avalokiteśvara in the form of Mahākāruṇika, The Great Compassionate One, incorporates instructions on examining the nature of mind according to the approach of Mahāmudrā. It is included within the Compendium of Sādhanas (sgrub thabs kun btus).
- The Refined Essence of Compassion: A Daily Sādhana for the Natural Liberation of Suffering, the Secret Practice of the Great Compassionate One by Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche
A daily sādhana of Dukngal Rangdrol (sdug bsngal rang grol), 'Natural Liberation of Suffering', the Avalokiteśvara practice from the Longchen Nyingtik that is either classed as a peaceful yidam or secret-level guru practice from the peaceful male-vidyādhara section of the cycle.
This simple practice of Avalokiteśvara, the Bodhisattva of Compassion, includes a visualisation to accompany the recitation of the six-syllable mantra, oṃ maṇi padme hūṃ, or, optionally, the seven-syllable mantra, oṃ maṇi padme hūṃ hrīḥ.
- The Method of Accomplishment of Ārya Avalokiteśvara: The Practice of Great Compassion & Mahāmudrā in Union by Ngorchen Könchok Lhundrup
This sādhana of Mahākāruṇika, The Great Compassionate One, incorporates instructions on examining the nature of mind according to the approach of Mahāmudrā. It is included within the Compendium of Sādhanas (sgrub thabs kun btus).
- The Sādhana of the Five Self-Arisen Noble Brothers: An Instruction in the Union of Generation and Completion by Shikpo Lingpa
Revealed during a vision in 1557, this is a sādhana of the five self-arisen Avalokiteśvara brothers ('phags pa rang byon mched lnga). These are four ancient statues associated with King Songtsen Gampo, i.e., Ārya Vati Zangpo, Ārya Bukham, Ārya Jamali, and Ārya Lokeśvara, as well as the self-visualization of Avalokiteśvara generated by the practitioner.
- Far-Reaching Benefit of Beings, Extensive as the Sky: Visualization and Mantra Recitation of the Great Compassionate One by Thangtong Gyalpo
One of the most popular Avalokiteśvara liturgies in Tibet, this practice of visualization and mantra recitation for the Great Compassionate One (mahākāruṇika) is attributed to the great adept Thangtong Gyalpo.
- A Brief Practice of Paying Homage and Making Offerings to the Sixteen Elders by Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo
- The Heart of Wish-Fulfilling Jewels: A Brief Practice for Paying Homage and Making Offerings to the Buddha together with his retinue of Arhats by Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo
Ju Mipham composed this sādhana of Śākyamuni Buddha, or '[Śākya]muni-ritual' (thub chog), at the request of Orgyen Tendzin Norbu (1841–1900). Both the sādhana and its vast 'supporting teaching' known as The White Lotus (rgyab chos padma dkar po) are among the most popular of Mipham's works.
- The Light of Primordial Wisdom: An Instruction Manual for the Primordially Pure Perfection Stage of the Powerful & Wrathful Dorje Drolö, Conqueror of Demons by Dudjom Rinpoche
This direct instruction on the perfection stage (rdzogs rim) practice for the Dorje Drolö form of Guru Padmasambhava includes the preparatory state of śamatha, and the main part, which is to generate the wisdom of vipaśyanā through view, meditation and action.
- Accomplishing All Activity: A Daily Practice of the Great and Glorious Dorje Drolö by Khenchen Jigme Phuntsok
- Extremely Secret Unelaborate Daily Sādhana for the Heart Practice of the Great Demon-Slayer by Jamyang Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö
Guru Dewa Chenpo
This concise practice of Guru Dewa Chenpo (gu ru bde ba chen po), the Guru of Great Bliss, was revealed as a terma by Chokgyur Lingpa and transcribed by Jamgön Kongtrul Lodrö Thaye at Tsurpu Monastery.
Guru Loden Chokse
A practice for developing wisdom; it is focused on Guru Loden Chokse (blo ldan mchog sred), a form of Guru Padmasambhava, and incorporates two other deities associated with wisdom, the goddess Sarasvatī and the bodhisattva Mañjuśrī.
- Net of the Illusory Display: The Root Sādhana from the Heart-Essence of the Deathless Lake-Born Vajra by Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo
In 1848, at the age of twenty-eight, Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo had a vision in which he was blessed by Guru Rinpoche, who then dissolved into his heart. As a result, the root practice of Guru Tsokyé Nyingtik, the Heart-Essence of the Lake-Born Guru, arose in Khyentse Wangpo’s mind, and he immediately wrote down its activity manual.
- The Fulfiller of All Wishes, the Ritual Manual from The Wish-Fulfilling Jewel Guru Heart-Practice by Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo
The longer sādhana, or ritual manual (las byang), for the The Guru’s Heart-Practice, Wish-Fulfilling Jewel (thugs sgrub yid bzhin nor bu), which was jointly revealed by Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo and Chokgyur Dechen Lingpa at Drak Rinchen Barwa on November 16, 1858.
Gyaltsen Tsemö Pung Gyen
- Wisdom Essence of the Mighty One: A Daily Practice of Hayagrīva's Play of the Three Realms, from the Ocean of Gathered Teachings of the Awesome Ones by Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche
This shorter, daily practice is adapted from the full sādhana of Hayagrīva's Play of the Three Realms (rta mgrin khams gsum rol pa), which itself belongs to the Assembly of Awesome Ones (Palchen Düpa) cycle within the Longchen Nyingtik.
- The Falling Rain of Blessings: A Brief Daily Practice of the Wealth Deity White Jambhala by Adeu Rinpoche
- The Brilliant Essence: The Ritual Manual for the Secret Embodiment of the Guru (Lama Sangdü) by Minling Terchen Gyurme Dorje
Gyurme Dorje compiled this ritual manual (las byang) for the Secret Embodiment of the Guru (bla ma gsang 'dus) revelation of Guru Chökyi Wangchuk (1212–1270) in order to facilitate elaborate offering practice on each tenth day of the lunar month at Mindrolling Monastery.
- Making Great Bliss the Path: Visualisation and Mantra Recitation of Medicine Buddha by Dudjom Lingpa
- Fast Track to Happiness and Peace: A Very Brief Meditation and Recitation of the Medicine Buddha by Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo
Peaceful & Wrathful Deities
- Highway of the Great Yoga: A Daily Practice for the Peaceful and Wrathful Deities of the Self-Liberated Wisdom Mind by Dodrupchen Jigme Trinle Özer
This short daily practice of the peaceful and wrathful deities (zhi khro) takes the famous treasure revelations of the tertön Karma Lingpa (b. 14th C.) as its basis and is widely used within the Longchen Nyingtik tradition.
- A Brief Visualization and Recitation of the Great Mother Prajñāpāramitā by Jamyang Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö
This daily practice of Tārā Sarasvatī belongs to the Inner Female Practice (Yumka) of the Heart Essence of the Vast Expanse (Longchen Nyingtik), A Treasure Vase Containing the Essence of Great Bliss, through which all enlightened activities are carried out based on the Twenty-One Tārās.
- A Concise Meditation and Mantra Recitation of Sarasvatī from the Heart-Essence of the Ḍākinī of Suchness (Chönyi Khandrö Tuktik) revealed by Sera Khandro
In this sādhana arranged for daily recitation, Dudjom Rinpoche synthesizes the visualisations of earlier Sitātapatrā practices with the mantras and key passages from the dhāraṇī known as The Supreme Accomplishment of Sitātapatrā (Tōh. 591; gdugs dkar mchog grub ma).
- The Swift Steed of Garuḍa, King of Birds: An Instruction for Travelling to Sukhāvatī: A Visualization and Recitation of Uṣnīṣa-Sitātapatrā by Karma Chakme
To practise this short sādhana of the deity Sitātapatrā (gdugs dkar, “White Parasol”) is, in the words of the text itself, "to hold aloft an indestructible vajra sword that can avert disease, obstacles, black magic, evil spells and all oppressing forces." The sādhana is also said to be a swift means of travelling to Sukhāvatī, akin to flying on the back of a garuḍa.
A short daily practice of Takhyung Barwa, the revelation of Jigme Lingpa (1730–1798) that combines the practices of Hayagrīva, Garuḍa and Guru Drakpo, and is renowned for its capacity to subjugate negative forces and cure disease.
The root text for the Blazing Wrathful Guru, Hayagrīva and Garuḍa (Lama Drakpo Takhyung Barwa), which the great tertön Jigme Lingpa revealed in 1795. The practice combines three deities—Hayagrīva, Garuḍa and Guru Drakpo—and is considered to be a powerful means of subjugating negative forces and overcoming disease.
A brief daily practice of The Heart-Essence of the Sublime Lady of Immortality, or Chimé Phakmé Nyingtik ('chi med 'phags ma'i snying thig), the popular long-life sādhana discovered as a mind treasure by Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo in 1855.
This brief text, which includes ter marks, is of uncertain origin, but the editors of the latest edition of Jamyang Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö's writings included it on the basis that it is possibly a revelation of his and note that he encouraged his students to recite it during a period of frequent earthquakes.
This short sādhana of Red Tārā, who is associated with the activity of magnetizing, was composed at the request of Khandro Tsering Chödrön (1929–2011) and her sister Tsering Wangmo of the Lakar family.
Jigme Lingpa tells us that he arranged this ritual of the Twenty-One Tārās based on the authoritative tradition that derives from Nāgārjuna and The Manifest Source Tantra of Tārā. In order to create the full liturgy, which he did at the request of the First Dodrupchen Jigme Trinlé Özer (1745–1821), he also added other elements from various pith instructions.
This short daily sādhana of Ucchuṣma (sme brtsegs) includes a simple visualization and mantra recitation. The practice is particularly associated with the purification of tantric commitments, or samaya.
- Moonlight of Pacifying Amṛta: A Daily Visualization and Recitation for the Dispeller of All Samaya Corruptions and Pollutions by Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo
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 Accomplishment of Supreme Enlightened Activity: A Recitation Manual for The Vajrakīla Root Tantra Section by Jamyang Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö
- Inlaid Jewels: Addenda to the 'Neck-Pouch Dagger’ (Purba Gulkhukma) Cycle by Khenchen Jigme Phuntsok
- The Single Mind Kīla Practice, Part of the 'Neck-Pouch Dagger’ (Purba Gulkhukma) Cycle by Khenchen Jigme Phuntsok
This is the main text of the Purba Gulkhukma cycle of Vajrakīla practice, which Khenchen Jigme Phuntsok revealed at the Asura cave in Yangleshö, Nepal. It includes the empowerment, sādhana and gaṇacakra offering.
This short daily sādhana of the wrathful ḍākinī Vajraṇakhī (rdo rje sder mo) includes a simple visualization and mantra recitation. According to the colophon, Dudjom Rinpoche extracted the practice from 'The Profound Long-Life Practice of the Three Roots' (rtsa gsum tshe zab), which is part of the Sevenfold Profundity revelation of Chokgyur Dechen Lingpa (1829-1870).
Khyentse Rinpoche composed this simple sādhana of Vajrasattva by adapting a section of the Tukdrup Sheldam Nyingjang (thugs sgrub zhal gdams snying byang), the root text of the Barche Kunsel revelation of Chokgyur Dechen Lingpa.
- The Cintāmaṇi (Wish-Fulfilling Jewel) Instruction: A Sādhana of the Glorious Vajrasattva, a Method of Purification and Accomplishment for Both Self and Others by Khenchen Jigme Phuntsok
This short Vajrasattva sādhana, which incorporates the four powers as a means of purifying negative actions, obscurations and breakages of samaya, was composed spontaneously in April 1997. The translation also includes additional verses for refuge, bodhicitta, dedication and aspiration, as recited in Larung Gar.
Yumka Dechen Gyalmo
- Words of the Vajra Queen: An Essential Daily Practice of the Vidyādharas’ Female Practice by Dodrupchen Jigme Tenpe Nyima
- A Glorious Garland of Great Bliss, the Root Sādhana of the Queen of Great Bliss, Yumka Tsogyal, from the Heart Essence of the Vast Expanse revealed by Jigme Lingpa