Oral teachings of Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche
and his spiritual sons

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Eight Sadhana Teachings, Eight Commands, Eight Pronouncements

Information on Kabgye, the Eight Sadhana Teachings & Eight Vidyadharas

in various forms of translation
  Eight Sadhana Teachings (sgrub pa bka' brgyad). Eight chief yidam deities of Mahayoga and their corresponding tantras and sadhanas that were transmitted to Guru Rinpoche by the eight Indian vidyadharas: Manjushri Body, Lotus Speech, Vishuddha Mind, Nectar Quality, Kilaya Activity, Liberating Sorcery of Mother Deities, Maledictory Fierce Mantra, and Mundane Worship. Often the name refers to a single practice involving complex mandalas with numerous deities. Also Assemblage of Sugatas and Sadhana Section.
  Eight Vidyadharas (rig ‘dzin brgyad). Manjushrimitra, Nagarjuna, Hungkara, Vimalamitra, Prabhahasti, Dhana Sanskrita, Shintam Garbha, and Guhyachandra.

Assemblage of Sugatas (bde gshegs 'dus pa). 'Deshek Düpa.' Important cycle of teachings connected to the Sadhana Section of Mahayoga. The tantras belonging to this cycle are found in Vol. OM of the Nyingma Gyubum as well as in the revelations of Nyang Ral Nyima Oser. These teachings were transmitted by Samantabhadra, manifest in the form of the peaceful Vajrasattva and wrathful Chemchok Heruka. The Lord of Secrets compiled and entrusted them to the dakini Leykyi Wangmo. She concealed these tantras in the stupa Enchanting Mound (bde byed brtsegs pa, Shankara Kuta) and later transmitted them to the Eight Vidyadharas, one teaching to each master: Manjushri Body to Manjushrimitra, Lotus Speech to Nagarjuna, Vishuddha Mind to Hungkara, Nectar Quality to Vimalamitra, Kilaya Activity to Prabhahasti, Liberating Sorcery of Mother Deities to Dhana Sanskrita, Maledictory Fierce Mantra to Shintam Garbha, and Mundane Worship to Guhyachandra. Each of these vidyadharas later transmitted their teachings to Padmasambhava who then became the main holder of all.

  Manjushri Body (‘jam dpal sku). The heruka of the Tathagata Body family or the tantric teachings connected to this deity among the ‘Eight Sadhana Teachings.’ Also known as Yamantaka, the wrathful form of Manjushri.
  Amrita (bdud rtsi). Same as 'Nectar Quality,' the heruka of the ratna family among the Eight Sadhana Teachings and the tantric teachings connected with that deity.
Dakini Lekyi Wangmo (mkha' 'gro las kyi dbang mo). Leykyi Wangmo, Skt. Karma Indranila, Karmeshvari. The dakini who transmitted the Eight Sadhana Teachings to the Eight Vidyadharas and later the Assemblage of Sugatas to Padmasambhava. Received the Vajrayana teachings from Vajrasattva and transmitted them to Hungchenkara, one of the eight Vidyadharas of India. She also entrusted to Guru Padmasambhava the transmission of the Eight Commands, the Union of the Sugatas (bka' brgyad bde gshegs 'dus pa). She is also known as Kungamo (kun dga' mo).
Dhana Sanskrita (nor gyi legs sbyar). One of the Eight Vidyadharas, the receiver of the transmissions of Liberating Sorcery of Mother Deities, Mamo Bötong. Not much is available about his life besides him being born in the Thogar area of Uddiyana.
Hungkara (Skt. hung mdzad, hung chen ka ra). One of the Eight Vidyadharas; receiver of the tantras of Vishuddha Mind including Heruka Galpo. Having taken birth in either India or Nepal, at first he was erudite in a non-Buddhist religion and gained some attainments but later awakened to faith in the Buddhist teachings, took ordination from Buddhajnana at Nalanda and studied both the outer and inner aspects of Secret Mantra. His name derives from the chief deity of the mandala into which he was first initiated. At some point he took an outcaste girl as consort and practiced for six months the four aspects of approach and accomplishment. Through that practice he had a vision of the entire mandala of Vajra Heruka and reached the attainment of the supreme accomplishment of mahamudra. He wrote the Golden Garland of Rulu, the Vishuddha Accomplishment as well as other treatises and benefited beings with tremendous activity. Finally, he departed to the realm of Buddha Akshobhya in his very body. He was associated with Rolang Sukhasiddhi, Kukuraja and Buddhaguhya, while his lineage was transmitted to Padmasambhava and Namkhai Nyingpo who spread his teachings in India. Also known as Hungchen, Hungchen-Kara.
Manjushrimitra ('jam dpal bshes gnyen, pron. Jampal Shenyen). An Indian master in the Dzogchen lineage and the chief disciple of Garab Dorje. In his role as a master in the lineage of the Sadhana Section of Mahayoga, he received the transmission of Yamantaka in the form of the Secret Wrathful Manjushri Tantra and other texts. Manjushrimitra was born in the Magadha district of India and was soon an adept in the general sciences and the conventional topics of Buddhism. After having become the most eminent among five hundred panditas, he received many teachings and empowerments from Garab Dorje, Lalitavajra, and other masters and reached the unified level of enlightenment, indivisible from Manjushri. Yamantaka appeared to him in person, conferred empowerment and transmitted the tantras and oral instructions. Among his chief recipients of this teaching were Hungkara, Padmasambhava, and Hanatela. There seem to have been several masters with this name, but Guru Tashi Tobgyal in his Ocean of Wondrous Sayings to Delight the Learned Ones views them as being magical emanations of the same master.
Nagarjuna (klu grub). An Indian master of philosophy and a tantric siddha. One of the Eight Vidyadharas; receiver of the tantras of Lotus Speech such as Supreme Steed Display. He is said to have taken birth in the southern part of India around four hundred years after the Buddha's nirvana. Having received ordination at Nalanda Monastery, he later acted as preceptor for the monks. He knew alchemy, stayed alive for six hundred years and transformed ordinary materials into gold in order to sustain the sangha. At Bodhgaya he erected pillars and stone walls to protect the Bodhi Tree and constructed 108 stupas. From the realm of the nagas he brought back the extensive Prajnaparamita scriptures. He was the life pillar for the Mahayana, but specifically he was a major exponent of the Unexcelled Vehicle of Vajrayana. Having attained realization of Hayagriva, he transmitted the lineage to Padmasambhava.
Prahasti (glang po'i 'od, 'od kyi glang po), Skt. Prabhahasti). 'Radiant Elephant.' Among the Eight Vidyadharas the receiver of the transmission of the tantras of Kilaya Activity. Born to a royal family in the western part of India and named Shakyaprabha when ordained as monk, Prahasti became extremely well-versed in the Tripitaka and studied Secret Mantra with Vajrahasya (rdo rje bzhad pa) and numerous other masters. He achieved supreme accomplishment and had, together with his disciple Shakyamitra, a tremendous impact on the Dharma in Kashmir.
Rombuguhya Devachandra (lha'i zla ba). One of the Eight Vidyadharas, receiver of the transmission of Mundane Worship born in Uddiyana.
Shantigarbha, Shintam Garbha (zhi ba'i snying po). One of the Eight Vidyadharas, receiver of the transmission of Maledictory Fierce Mantra. Born in Uddiyana and reputed to have visited Tibet and participated in the consecration of the Samye Temple.
Vimalamitra (dri med bshes gnyen). A master in the Dzogchen lineage and the crown ornament of five hundred panditas, who had attained the indestructible form of the rainbow body. He received the transmission of Dzogchen from Shri Singha and Jnanasutra. Vimalamitra is regarded as one of the three main forefathers for establishing the Dzogchen teachings, especially the Instruction Section, in Tibet, which he chiefly transmitted to five people: King Trisong Deutsen, Prince Muney Tsenpo, Tingdzin Sangpo of Nyang, Kawa Paltsek and Chokro Lui Gyaltsen. Having translated these extremely profound instructions, he concealed the texts at Samye Chimphu for the sake of future generations. On his departure to the Five-peaked Mountain in China, Vimalamitra made the promise to return once every century in order to clarify and propagate the teachings of the secret, innermost essence, Sangwa Nyingtig. The oral lineage of his teachings on the Instruction Section was continued by Tingdzin Sangpo of Nyang who also concealed one set of the scriptures. one hundred and fifty five years after Vimalamitra departed from Tibet, an emanation of him named Dangma Lhüngyal took out the hidden texts. They are now included in the collection known as Vima Nyingtig, the Heart Essence of Vimalamitra. In his role as lineage holder of Nectar Quality among the Eight Sadhana Teachings, he is counted among the Eight Vidyadharas of India, the receiver of the Eightfold Volume of Nectar Quality. According to this lineage he was born in Elephant Grove, an area in the western part of India. He was learned in both the common and extraordinary topics of knowledge and received teachings on the tantras from Buddhaguhya and many other illustrious masters. Having practiced, he reached the accomplishment of the vidyadhara level of mahamudra and wrote numerous treatises, mainly on the teachings connected to the Magical Net.
  Eight classes of herukas or means for attainment (sgrub pa bka' brgyad). 1) Yamantaka, the wrathful Manjusri, the deity of body ('jam dpal sku); 2) Hayagriva, the deity of speech (padma gsung); 3) Vishuddha, the deity of mind (yang dag thugs); 4) Vajramrita, the deity of enlightened qualities (bdud rtsi yon tan); 5) Vajra Kila, the deity of action (phur ba 'phrin las); 6) Matarah, the deity of calling and dispatching (ma mo rbod gtong); 7) the worldly deities of offering and praise ('jig rten mchod bstod); and 8) the worldly deities of wrathful mantras (mod pa drag sngags).
  Eight heruka sadhanas (sgrub pa bka' brgyad). Eight yidams and their corresponding sadhanas received by Padmakara from the Eight Vidyadharas.
  Eight Indian Vidyadharas (rgya gar gyi rig 'dzin brgyad). Manjushrimitra, Nagarjuna, Hungchenkara, Vimalamitra, Prabhahasti, Danasanskrit, Shintamgarbha and Guhyachandra.
  Historical Origin of the Teachings of the Assemblage of Sugatas. (bde gshegs 'dus pa'i bka'i byung tshul). A terma scripture revealed by Nyang Ral Nyima Özer. 41 pages. Published by H.H. Dudjom Rinpoche in the first volume of the Eight Sadhana Teachings of the Dharma Cycle of the Assemblage of Sugatas (bka' brgyad bde gshegs 'dus pa'i chos skor). This scripture is the detailed account of how the Eight Sadhana Teachings were transmitted from Buddha Samantabhadra to Dharmevajra, the dakini Leykyi Wangmo, the eight Indian vidyadharas and Padmasambhava, and then to the eight Tibetan disciples. Also included is a detailed list of the tantras received by the vidyadharas and the scriptures contained in the Assemblage of Sugatas.
Samye Chimphu  Samye Chimphu - The place where Padmasambhava gave the empowerment in Tibet to King Trisong Deutsen and to seven other disciples, each of whom was entrusted with the practice upon one the Eight Herukas of the Eight Canons of Accomplishment (sgrub pa bka' brgyad).
  Eight Commands, Union of the Sugatas (bka' brgyad bde gshegs 'dus pa), rediscovered by Nyang Ral Nyima Öser (nyang ral nyi ma 'od zer, 1136-1204); first and most important of the terma cycles based on the Eight Commands (sgrub pa bka' brgyad).
  Eight Heruka Sadhanas - Eight yidams and their corresponding sadhanas received by Padmakara from the Eight Vidyadharas. The eight Heruka Sadhanas are part of the meditative realization transmission which preserves essential instructions for practice. Each of these sadhanas is connected with a particular root text and with various specific practices containing everything necessary for enlightenment. the were transmitted from Padmasambhava to eight of his disciples who were known as the Eight Great Acharyas. The Eight Heruka Sadhanas are: 'jam dpal sku (gshin rje); Padma gsung; Yang dag thugs; rdo rje phur ba 'phrin las; bdud rtsi yon tan; ma mo rbod stong; 'jig rten mchod bstod; and dmod pa drag sngags.
  eight vidhyadharas or awareness-holders of india (rgya gar rig 'dzin brgyad). Vimalamitra, Humkara, Manjusrimitra, Nagarjuna, Padmasambhava, Dhanasamskrita, Rambuguhya-Devacandra, and Santigarbha.
  Eight disciples (rje ‘bangs brgyad). The eight chief recipients in Tibet of the Eight Sadhana Teachings transmitted by Guru Rinpoche: King Trisong Deutsen, Namkhai Nyingpo, Sangye Yeshe, Gyalwa Cho-yang, Yeshe Tsogyal, Palgyi Yeshe, Palgyi Senge, and Vairotsana.
  eight logos deities (sgrub pa bka' brgyad). eight principal mahayoga yidams ('jam dpal gshin rje shed, pad ma gsung / rta mgrin, yang dag heruka, bdud rtsi yon tan, rdo rje phur ba / rdo rje bzhun nu, ma mo rbod gtong, 'jig rten dregs pa, dregs sngags dmod pa), che mchog heruka combines the first five; rig 'dzin bla ma and spyil dril snying po are mentioned sometimes sadhanas of eight great mandalas yamantaka, hayagriva, vajraheruka, bdud rtsi che mchog, vajrakila, ma mo rbod gtong, 'jigs rten mchod bstod, dmod pa drag sngags), eight great orders of mandalas, sadhana practices of the eight Herukas.
  Eight great vidyadhara, receivers of the transmissions (bka' babs rig 'dzin chen po brgyad). The receiver of the transmission of Manjushri was Manjushrimitra ('jam dpal bshes gnyen), the vidyadhara of Body. 2) The receiver of the transmission of Mighty Padma (pad ma dbang) (Hayagriva) was Nagarjuna (klu sgrub snying po), the vidyadhara of Speech. 3) The receiver of the transmission of Vishuddha (yang dag) was Hungchenkara (hung mdzad), the vidyadhara of Mind. 4) The receiver of the transmission of Amrita Medicine (bdud rtsi sman) was Vimalamitra (dri med bshes gnyen), the vidyadhara of Qualities. 5) The receiver of the transmission of Kilaya (phur pa) was Prabhahasti ('od kyi glang po), the vidyadhara of Activity. 6) The receiver of the transmission of Bötong (rbod gtong) was Danasanskrit (nor gyi legs sbyar), the vidyadhara of Mamo. 7) The receiver of the transmission of Möpa (dmod pa) was Shintam Garbha (zhi ba'i snying po), the vidyadhara of Fierce Mantra (drag sngags). 8) The receiver of the transmission of Loka ('jig rten) was Guhyachandra (gsang ba'i zla ba), the vidyadhara of Worship (mchod bstod).
  bka' brgyad drag po rang byung rang shar - terma revealed by {rgod kyi ldem 'phru can} {gter ston} 1337-1408; terma text in four volumes by {rig 'dzin rgod ldem}. Also bka' brgyad rang shar / sgrub chen bka' brgyad drag po rang byung rang shar
  bka' brgyad bde gshegs 'dus pa - {bka' brgyad bde 'dus}, Kabgye Deshek Düpa, Eight Commands, Union of the Sugatas. Terma in 9 or 13 volumes revealed by {nyang ral nyi ma 'od zer}, Nyang Ral Nyima Özer (1124-1192), alias {mnga' bdag myang ral nyi ma 'od zer}
  bka' brgyad rnam gsum - the three Eight Sadhana Teachings: {bka' brgyad gsang rdzogs, bka' brgyad bde 'dus, bka' brgyad rang shar}
  bka' brgyad gsang ba yongs rdzogs - Terma revealed by Guru Chöwang
bka' brgyad gsang rdzogs - Syn {bka' brgyad gsang ba yongs rdzogs}.
  bka' brgyad lha tshogs - the deities of the Eight Sadhana Teachings, the deities of the Eight Transmitted Precepts
  sgrub pa bka' brgyad - Eight Sadhana Teachings. 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. See also under Assemblage of Sugatas and Sadhana Section
  sgrub chen bka' brgyad - see {sgrub pa bka' brgyad}
  sgrub chen bka' brgyad kyi lha tshogs bdun brgya dang nyer lnga -the 725 deities of the Eight Sadhana Teachings
  sgrub pa bka' brgyad - (deities of) Eight Commands of Sadhana Practice cycle, eight classes of Herukas
  bla rig 'dzin - a ninth cycle of teaching often added to {sgrub pa bka' brgyad}
  ma mo rbod gtong - command of mamo; Matari the Liberating Sorcery; [worldly deities of] inciting and dispatching, see one of {sgrub pa bka' brgyad} Matari the liberating sorcery. One of {bka' brgyad} one of the {'jig rten pa'i sde gsum} three categories of worldly deities; one of {sgrub pa sde brgyad}
  dmod pa drag sngags - one of {sgrub pa sde brgyad}; powerful activity of subjugation; maledictory fierce mantras. fierce mantras of spells, {sgrub pa bka' brgyad}. maledictory subjugation mantras. One of {bka' brgyad} one of the {'jig rten pa'i sde gsum} three categories of worldly deities, the worldly deities of exorcism.
  bla ma rig 'dzin - Guru Vidyadhara. A deity and set of scriptures belonging to the Nine Sadhana Sections. Often the Guru Vidyadhara and the eight herukas in the Eight Sadhana Teachings form a single mandala with nine groups of deities. The chief existing scripture for the teachings on Guru Vidyadhara is called the Root Tantra of the Assemblage of Vidyadharas (rig 'dzin 'dus pa rtsa ba'i rgyud) and is the fifteenth tantra within the Assemblage of Sugatas, an immensely detailed collection of teachings on the Eight Sadhana Teachings and associated Vajrayana material brought to Tibet by Padmasambhava and taught to his main disciple. The Assemblage of Sugatas was concealed as a terma and later revealed by Nyang Ral Nyima Özer. The practice of Guru Vidyadhara is expressed through the principle known as the four aspects of approach and accomplishment. The most detailed terma on this principle was revealed by Sangye Lingpa (1340-1396) and is still renowned as Lama Gongdü (bla ma dgongs 'dus) in 18 volumes of approximately 700 pages each. The Guru Vidyadhara is also the basis for innumerable sadhanas propagated by other tertöns, for instance the Rigdzin Düpa cycle within the termas of Longchen Nyingtig as well as the Barchey Künsel cycle revealed by Chokgyur Lingpa and Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo that are both widely practiced to this day





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