Dakini Teachings

Padmasambhava, the great Indian master who is regarded as “the second buddha”, went to Tibet where he established the teachings of Vajrayana. This book contains his replies to questions from Yeshe Tsogyal, his foremost and female disciple. She wrote down most of their conversations and preserved them for future generations.

 

When Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche was at the Royal Library in Copenhagen 1976, he was shown some rare text brought from Mongolia by a Danish explorer. He immediately asked me for a copy. I made the copy and one for myself too.

Ten years after, in order to collect the chapters in Dakini Teachings, I read through this text and many other old handwritten manuscripts. I chose eight sets of Padmasambhava’s teachings to present the essence of his oral advice on Dharma practice. They show how to relate to life in a liberating, personal way. Especially, I chose the chapters on taking refuge and on awakened mind, which he explains on three levels each. This means you can use his advice when you train to be a kind and unselfish bodhisattva, when you see yourself as a buddha during Vajrayana practice, and when you sit in simple meditation.

 

I found these chapters extremely helpful for understanding how these two basic practices are so important on all levels of training, including Dzogchen.

Five chapters contain Padmasambhava’s incredibly practical advice on the general aspects of Vajrayana training. I am delighted to share these precious teachings.

 

Here is an example of the question and answer style:

 

Lady Tsogyal asked: "Great Master, please be kind and teach the basis for all Dharma practice, the means by which to end birth and death, a little cause which has immense benefit, a method which is easy to apply and has little hardship." 

 

The nirmanakaya master replied: "Tsogyal, taking refuge is the basis for all Dharma practice. The Three Jewels are the support for all Dharma practice. The means which brings an end to birth and death is to take refuge along with its subsidiary aspects."

 

Lady Tsogyal asked: "What is the essential meaning of taking refuge? What is its definition? When divided, how many types are there?"

 

The great master then continues with detailed replies.

 

While translating this book, I was often moved to tears because of being saturated by his blessings and inspiration. I have always loved Padmasambhava; he is my transcendental hero. 

 

In this book you can actually “listen in” on Padmasambhava’s Dharma talk. The translation may not be perfect in scholarship and literary eloquence, but I believe that the link between his blessings and the reader's openness and sincerity will make up for these shortcomings. Reading Dakini Teachings will then be close to being in his presence.

 

May these teachings touch your heart and be a continual source of inspiration. 

 

 

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