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From Lhasa to India.

Because of the examples set by the bodhisattva kings and ministers of our country, all our people irrespective of status--high, medium or low- has tremendous reverence and love for India, the land of exalted beings, extraordinary land whence the Buddhadharma arrived in Tibet. Every aspect of physical, mental and verbal attributes of Tibetan scholars, such as their imaginative quality, literary style, dress and rituals bear Indian characteristics, just as sesame seeds and sesame oil are inseparable. Even in metaphoric examples in Tibetan verses, the names of Indian mountains, rivers, flowers, and others Indian names are used. For an example:
   sbigs byed ri bo lta bur brjid p'ai sku//
   Gang ga'i rgyun ltar dag cing dri med gsung//
   (The body is graceful like Mount Vinvya;
   The speech is as clear as the stream of the Ganga.)


The verses with such examples are considered beautiful. Look at the example below:
   rma rgyal spom ra bzhin du brjid pa'i sku//
   rma chu bzhin du rgyun chad med pa'i gsung//
   (The body is graceful like Magyal Pomra;
   The speech is ceaseless like the stream of the Machu.)


In this example, though the first words of the two lines rhyme with each other and the diction style is beautiful, the verse as a whole appears risible. Because of strong tendency to use Indian names, sometimes [our writers] use in their writings the names of very common things in India merely on assumption of their meanings, without knowing their real meanings. By doing so, they unintentionally write many humorous things. Actually, we should see or hear about a thing to gain precise knowledge of it. Although it does not mean we will become learned if we know about them or vice versa, if one describes something just by guessing, it obviously becomes a lie. Moreover, sometimes it might give a significantly different and wrong meaning. If we know the exact meanings of the things we write, it will make a great difference. Therefore, whatever I saw and heard during my pilgrimage to various holy places of Tibet and India, I shall write them down altogether in one section. I will not write anything merely on false assumptions, nor shall I write baseless fanciful tales that will please many people. I even do not have the courage to write real facts to avoid hurting others' feeling. I will not write anything for the benefit of my own livelihood. I do not have the aim to earn good reputation. I will write down on the spot whatever I find at a particular place, just like a conversation, and compile a book for the sake of only a few wise people who are devoid of partiality. If I remain too timid and fear that I will deviate from others' trend, I cannot write anything that can improve knowledge. However, if I point out honestly what is correct and what is incorrect, I will hurt many people of both high and low status, and I will become a target of abuse and criticism. Being a Tibetan and knowing my own country well, I understand that this will put me in a great danger. Unconcerned with this danger, I will nevertheless write here honestly, and I pray a hundred times that the humble ones may not get angry with me.
   Exaggerated statements which amaze fools,
   Flattering words which please people of high position, and
   Fictions, which arouse faith in people--
   I renounce these and follow the path of honesty.


I, at the age of thirty-two, in the Wood-Male-Dog year [1934] of the 16th Rabjung Cycle, set off for India. The year coincided with the 2,476th parinirvana of Lord Buddha in accordance with the Theravadic tradition of Sri Lanka. This date system is followed by all those countries where Buddhism flourished in later times. The advantage of this date system is that it makes study of history easier. Therefore, I will base all the historical dates on this date system. Some great scholars of Tibet carelessly said that this date system is not reliable because the Theravadic monks mistook the date of the construction of the image of the Buddha at Bodhagaya for the date of Buddha's birth. This statement is highly controversial.

Since the days of my youth, I always had a desire to visit India. When I went to Central Tibet and spent seven years at Drepung ('bras spung), I met an Indian monk called Pandit Rahula [Shantirakshita] who urged me to go to India. So my dream came true. I accompanied him to India. Initially, we went on pilgrimage to many places in Tibet, such as Phenyul ('phanyul) and Radreng (rwagreng). At the same time, I started to learn basic Sanskrit from him. He had plenty of money. He could speak Tibetan almost to the level of a seven-year-old Tibetan child. He was good at making friends with Lhasa aristocrats. Therefore, with the help of some aristocrats in Lhasa, we were able to visit monasteries and see the holy images very closely. Phenyul is located between Lhasa and a mountain, and the number of monasteries in Phenyul is more than in Lhasa. The upper part of Phenyul is like a nomadic region with vast plains and its scenery is so beautiful. Most of the famous Kadampa monasteries such as Langtang (glang thang), Poto (po to) and Dragyab (brag rgyab) are located either at the upper or lower part of this region. All those ancient Kadampa monasteries had many stupas. In India also, the remnants of Sarnath and Nalanda monasteries have countless stupas of various sizes. So it was an ancient tradition. The oldest temple in Phenyul is Gyal Lhakang (rgyal lha khang), which is located in the upper part of Phenyul. It was founded by Zhang Nanam Dorje Wangchuk (zhang rna nam rdo rje dbang phyug) (1), disciple of Lume (klu mes), who was in turn a close disciple of Lama Chenpo (bla ma chenpo) (2), around 113 years after King Lang Darma suppressed Buddhism. According to Golo, this monastery was one of the four great Buddhist centers established in Tibet. Therefore, it was one of the earliest monasteries built during the period of later dissemination of Buddhism in Tibet. Inside the shrine of the prayer hall of the monastery, there was a huge statue of Maitreya and very high stacks of scriptural texts without wooden covers. Such texts are also found in Radreng and Sakya monasteries. Most of these texts were written in ancient scripts. I shall discuss the different forms of these ancient scripts later in a separate section. At one corner of the shrine, there was a life size stone image of Maitreya flanked by his two retinues, in the pure Indian style. Pandita (Rahula) was surprised to see the image and said that it was brought from India. When we took a lamp and looked at it closely, we found a banner hung behind the image that read:
   This holy image of Maitreya
   Was installed as the crown of this holy place
   By the devout patron Tsang Do kon tsegs;
   May I attain the fruit of enlightenment!
   Om me ha ra na hum!


Therefore, the image seemed to have been constructed in Tibet by an Indian artisan. Rhymed verses of this kind were also found on ancient stone carvings. Although many scholars have strongly protested against the writing of IDOU with a long sound, most ancient texts have this. In antiquity when Indian terms were transliterated into Tibetan, exact Indian phonetics was hardly maintained. Even in some texts which have the translators' names at the end, "[z.sup.2]I" has been written as " [degrees]z[degrees]-[degrees]21/4-". So the writing of Sanskrit terms in Tibetan in Sanskrit style seems to have been introduced by modern scholars. However, though in modern times the Sanskrit term prajna is written in Tibetan as "[s.sup.3[per thousand]][empty set]-" in Sanskrit spelling, it is pronounced as "[[double dagger].sup.3[per thousand]] 1/4-" like a Tibetan word. In most ancient texts, it has been written as "q1/4[degrees]H[degrees]-" which can be pronounced better. More details shall be discussed in later chapters.

Rahula told me that among the stocks of Indian metal images and scroll paintings amassed like stores in the old monasteries of Tibet, he had not seen an Indian style stone image such as the stone image that we found in a dark room (of Gyal Lhakang).

Gyal Lhakang is close to a southern mountain. Nearby is Riding Mountain, which could serve as a very good site for the present monastery. However, the monastery was built on the plain instead of the mountainside. In general, the monasteries and temples built by early Dharma kings of Tibet and those that were built in the early years of the period of later dissemination of Buddhism were built on plains. Later, the monasteries were built on hills with increasing height. In Central India, there were few mountains and all monasteries and temples such as Nalanda Monastery and Mahabodhi Temple were built on plains. Therefore, I think the above monasteries were modeled on Indian style. In India when people find even a small hill, they will give it a particular name, such as "the king of mountains" and regard it as very sacred. They will build temples on it. Vikramala is located on a high rock on the bank of the Ganges. Except the rock in the middle of the river and the rocky hill on the bank of the river, there is no mountain in that area. Sakya Pandita rightly said that Vulture Peak is a huge mountain of India. In early times, India was referred to only central India; otherwise, there are mountains in south India such as Vinaya and many mountains facing the northeastern ocean.

At the gate of Gyal Lhakang, there was a four-sided stone pillar as high as a standing man. All the four faces of the pillar had crossed-vajra designs. The eastern face of the pillar bears the following inscription:
   btsugs pa la spyi ding sang gi dus
   dge ba la blo gcig legs pa la gros mthun pa ni nyung na 'o na yang
   dkon mchog gsum la skyabs su 'gro ba'i myi
   rnam kyi ni/ lhar sangs rgyas bzung gros
   phugs chos la gtod/ gtsor lta ba sbyang/ tshig
   spyod rnal du dbab/ 'tsho ba gtsang mr sgrub/
   byed dgu chos dang sbyar/ spyi gros gcig tu
   bzlum/ sgo gnyer so sor blang/ ngan 'gro dgag tu
   dbyung/ bden gtam dang du blang/ 'dir bcu
   byas na/ tshe 'di dang phyi ma gnyis gar bde bar
   'gyur bas/ tshig bcu po 'di ...
   (There were one or two lines difficult to read.)
   ...
   yid la m brjed par bzung//

   (rough translation)
   Installed here, nowadays
   Generally people rarely have a common mind for virtuous acts and
      good deeds;
   But those who seek refuge in the Three Jewels should
   Hold the Buddha as the god;
   Entrust their destiny to the Dharma;
   Purify their minds;
   Purify their bad conduct;
   Earn un-perverted livelihood;
   Make all their actions conform to the principles of the Dharma;
   Take joint decisions through discussion;
   Neglect evil plans, and
   Speak the truth,
   It will benefit this and the next life.

   These ten words ...(there are one or two lines which are not clear)
   Keep these in minds, without forgetting.


There are a few other lines after this, but they are illegible. In the above lines, the word "uU-" in the first line had no suffix "1/4" Similarly, the word "[+ or -]UG[Angstrom]-" was written as "[+ or -]UG-" [without the [Angstrom]- suffix]. Very ancient texts have reversed gi gu ( i), but here all the gi gu are normal. It is not known which lama or king installed it. The words "installed here" (btsugs pa la) shows the installer's power. From the statements "sgo gnyer so sor blang/ ngan gros dgag tu dbyung," it appears that it was installed by a king, who could be Tri Dharma's (khri dar ma's) nephew Tashi Tsek (bkra shis tsegs) or the latter's son King Wode ('od sde). There was also a pillar in a courtyard of a house, but on that day, the family was not at home and the door was closed. We were told that there were one or two pillars somewhere in Phenyul. Those pilgrims who are not in a hurry, it would be good if they could copy down the inscriptions on the pillars. I will write the inscription of the Lhasa pillar later in this section when I write some new historical facts that I have found.

A little distance from Gyal Lhakang was a small nunnery on a pleasant mountainside. We were told that it was Patsab Nunnery. It was the seat of the great Lotsawa [Patsab]. There was nothing except for a small temple in bad condition. When I chanced upon such great Buddhist centers, whose exact locations are not mentioned (in Tibetan sources) except saying that they were in U-Tsang, I had a mixed feeling of extreme joy and sadness. Most of the Kadampa temples have simple design and they have wooden pillars, which have become crooked. However, they seemed to me a source of blessing, and faith and joy arose in me just by their sight. Phenyul is a very pleasant region and its people are good-natured.

Thereafter we went to Radreng Monastery via Taklung (stag lung). We looked around at the images and juniper trees at the monastery. I wondered if there was any sacred place as beautiful and pleasant as it. I heard that there were a few Indian manuscripts, but the monastic manager, suspecting the pandita as a foreigner, did not let us in. The pandita was pure Indian with dark complexion and there was no chance of mistaking him for a foreigner. The monks were not to blame--it was due to their lack of knowledge of foreign countries. The people of western and northern India, except for their dark complexion, look similar to Russians in all aspects, complexion and physical character. If they go to other countries, they might be mistaken for Russians.

Jonang Kunkhen said, "I found in Radreng many texts such as commentaries on the Shantipa's Hevajra Mulatantraraja (brtag gnyis) and Anutaratantra (dgra nag gi rgyud) which bear Atisha's name at the end. I randomly took two folios from the beginning of the texts." Given that what he said was true, the texts in the monastery might be the ones that he mentioned. However, according to his autobiography, Drom dispatched all the texts to India after Atisha passed away. So there might not be many Indian manuscripts in the monastery. We were told that the total Indian manuscripts contained in the monastery would fill a small suitcase for a man. Besides, there were hundreds of thousands of texts in the temple, which are believed to be Indian texts by innocent people. They are all in fact Tibetan texts. Most of the Indian manuscripts were written on palm leaves and their length cannot be more than four finger's width (sor). The tips of the leaves were long, so how can they be so broad? When Lord Mila asked cowherds where Marpa lived, a little boy named Darma Dode (dar ma mdo sde) said, "Oh, you are looking for my father! He will come, carrying lots of thin and long scriptural texts from India." Details about these Indian manuscripts will be mentioned later in this section.

The caretaker of Radreng Monastery explained the holy representations to us. There were two juniper trees on the circumambulation path. "This one is white sandalwood, that one is red sandalwood," explained the caretaker. Pandita laughed mockingly and said, "Sandalwood trees need an extremely hot climate to grow, they are not found even in central regions; they are found only in the southern region. How come they grow here?" However, he was not aware that our people talk of many wondrous things, without thinking about the places, times and reasons. From there, we returned to Lhasa and then headed to India.

In around the seventh month of Hor, by way of Yamdrok (yar brog), we reached Gyantse (rgyang tse), which is separated from Zhalu and Tashi Lhunpo (bkra shis lhun po) by a river. From Gyantse, after a one-day journey by foot towards the north, we saw a small monastery called Pokang (spos khang tshogspa) on a mountainside. We visited it. This is one of the four monasteries called Cholung Tsokpa, established during the time of the great Indian Mendicant Mahapandita (Shakyashribhadra). Originally, it was built at the foot of the hill, but later it was rebuilt on the present site. There was an old temple near it. It is said to be one of the border-subduing temples (mtha' 'dul), but I do not think this is true. The temple had robes and bowls of Mahapandita Shakyashri, among other sacred objects. The robes were dark brown. Burmese monks wear robes of this color. When Naktso (nag 'tsho) met Atisha, Atisha was said to be wearing brownish robes--this brownish color was not the result of a dark stain. Sakyapas wear brown robes of only ther ma (woolen fabric) quality. The early images have golden faces and brown-coloured robes, and I wonder if this tradition is the same as the one which is popular in Kham. In one of the letters sent by Je [Tsongkapa] to Khedrup [Gelek Palzang], it mentions, "I am sending you special brown robes as gifts..." Therefore, the custom of wearing brown robes became very popular during a particular period. In the Flower Garland (me togphreng rgyud), maroon, red ochre (tsag) and blue are allowed for the color of robes. Here red-ochre or tsag might refer to this brown color. Sri Lankan monks wear only saffron-colored robes with lotus symbols. Nowadays, Indian monks do not have any labels. Their alms-bowls are similar to those of monks of Sri Lanka in shape, and their insides are cream-colored. They have no high base, so they can be easily placed on the ground. The Indian monks wear shoes, which have soles made of cloth, and upper parts that are red with black edges. I have made a sketch of these shoes. Thinking that these monastic outfits are exemplary and have authenticity and background reasons, I have written briefly about them here.

The most amazing thing is that there was an Indian style scroll painting of the five tantric manifestations of Avalokiteshvara (don zhags lha lnga), the tutelary deity of Mahapandita Shakyashri. The painting was of high quality and beautiful. It is said that this is the one mentioned in his biography. This kind of excellent painting of the Gupta period is not found in India or Tibet nowadays. The image has endured intact without much damage. In the painting, the Hayagriva in the retinue had upper canine teeth like tusks of an elephant. In the temples of early kings, the deities in wrathful manifestation are depicted in this manner. I heard that this style of painting still exists in Kham. This kind of wrathful faces, with mouth, which has canines and look like that of a tiger, widely open making the neck hardly visible, looks absolutely magnificient. This style of painting was introduced into Tibet not long ago.

We found some Indian manuscripts there, including some parts of Prajnaparamita in Eight Thousand Verses, which was said to be the personal text of Shakyashri. There was Ashvaghosa's Three Usual Practices. There was an Indian text on yongs kyi gtam, withou the author's name, at the end of which had been written "Bhiksu Dipamkara Putkia", meaning "Atisha's Texts". It had 56 pages of long size with five lines on each page. There was also a text of Abhisamaya Alamkara. There was a short text on chos gnyis rnam 'grel. It cover bears a line saying "donated by Yatse". We found an Indian text donated by Yatse in Zhalu too. Some of the descendants of the Dharma kings were called Yatse kings, so this region I think is a part of Ngari. The Indian texts were written in the 1,370th anniversary of King Vikramasila's enthronement. Up to that Tiger year, 1,074 years [according to the western calendar] had passed. The dates written at the end of most of the Indian manuscripts were based on this date. Later, in a Tiger year [1938], Pandita and I, along with two Indian companions, came to Tibet to search for Indian manuscripts; we searched for Indian manuscripts for many days. I got the opportunity to look at them closely. I shall write whatever I have seen during my both visits.

Zhalu and Sakya were similar to others. Thereafter, via Tashi Lhunpo, we arrived at Zhalu Ripuk. Kunkhen Bu's [Bu ston's] residence had only one pillar and the walls were without paint. There were no windows to allow light into the room; light came only through the door. Even the quarters of present monks were in very poor condition. Some important texts had been put in two gray wooden boxes, sized three arm spans in length and six thos (3) in height. We were told that these two boxes belonged to Buton. There were also many Tibetan texts. There was a text wrapped in about nine pieces of cloth, which was not known to anyone. When I opened it, it was the first version of Buton's sgron gsal bshad sbyar mtha' drug gsal ba, commentary on the Chandrakirti's Pradipoddyotana. In the introduction of the text, it said that the text was written in the handwriting of his spiritual son Lotsawa and should not be lost. There were yellow lines on which the text was written in short ume script similar to the present kham bris script and the condition of the text were so fine that it appeared to be only one or two years old. Thinking that the text was written by Je Tsongkapa, without any particular reason, I had a sad feeling. Very little care had been taken of the other texts. At Gorum Temple of Sakya Monastery, once when we tried to sort out some damaged manuscripts, five volumes of Indian texts got mixed up. Saying that keeping disordered texts would bring misfortune, some religious people threw all of them in a lower room amongst heaps of garbage. The texts were wasted. Palm-leaf manuscripts are extremely rare even in India. It is shocking if such valuable things are treated in such a way. Some devout people steal one or two folios from a complete set of texts and use them to wear on their neck as an amulet. Some cut the page into pieces and eat them as blessings. Some people put them inside statues and stupas as relics. These texts will never see the light again. Such acts terribly harm the stream of the Dharma, yet they still boast of their act to others.

At Ripuk we classified the Indian manuscripts and sorted them. There were 42 large and small volumes of texts, some of which included the following:
Name of text                   Author        Condition

Tarkajvala (second vol.) (4)   Bhavaviveka   complete; this is
                                               the root text,
                                               not a commentary.
Abhidharma-Samucchaya                        incomplete
Prajnaparamita                               incomplete
Guhyasamaja                                  incomplete
Boddhisccita                                 incomplete
Trisamvara                     Pravedha
dam tshig gsum bkod            Jayaprabha    long, 6 leaves
pa'i rgyal po'i sngon du                       with different
bsnyen p'i cho ga                              number of lines

The average length of the long sheets have about 1 khru (cubit)
and 1 mtho (distance betwee the tips of thumb and middle finger.)

Prajnaparamtatika                            incomplete
Manjushrinamo Samagati                       complete; written
                                               on papers
Sidhikabiratantra                            incomplete; 14
                                               sheets, short
                                               size
Taratutratika                                incomplete
Trishinka                      Vasubandhu    complete
Prajnaparamitapindarth         Dignaga
Trishirtikarinka (in prose)    Asanga
Guyhondratilakalparaj                        folios missing from
                                               the beginning and
                                               end, short length,
                                               pages with eight
                                               lines
Khams le'i dri-med 'od                       complete; 46 pages in
                                               excellent condition


There are also the second to the sixteenth sections of the One Hundred Thousand Verses written on long leaves. The text has been preserved well. One of the four volumes of the texts composed and edited by Jetsun Drakpa Gyaltsen (rje btsun gragspa rgyal mtshan) in Nepal is found here, and the other three are at Sakya Monastery. There is also a well-preserved manuscript of Ashtasahasrika Prajnaparamita. There was a text with about 16 folios of long length with several Tibetan subtitles such as de nyid bcu nyid (Ten Natures of Mantra), sbyin sgregs kyi cho ga (Fire Ritual), sangs rgyas kyi le'u nyer gcig pa rdzogs so and gtor ma'i de kho na nyid (Torma Ritual) authored by Lopon Rinchen Tsultrim (slob dpon rin chen tshul khrim). It comprises sixteen volumes.

There were works of Jnashrimitra including: Kalachakra Tikka, 46 folios in fine condition, Yogaprabhasadhna, Boddhisttavajra tikka, a text on medicine by Bibhutichandra. There were other texts by him, such as gzhan gsal gyi rab tu byed pa, thams cad mkhen pa grub pa (long and 16 folios), skad cig gis 'jig pa grub pa; tshad ma nang du grub pa; dbang phyug rnam par spyod p. Among these volumes, there were texts without the author's name - ldan grub kyi rgyu dpyod pa, sems gnyis med pa dpyod pa'i rab byed and yan lag can med pa. All these texts were in almost equal in size and they were in good condition. They made twelve sections of a thick volume.

We discovered a text with title sangs rgyas 'khol gyi nyis khri'i man ngag and 'phags pa de 'dun phal chen pa'i 'jig rten las 'das par smra ba'i 'dul ba (1 vol. long sheets, fine condition). Golo in his Blue Annals stated that the text was on alcohol. Panchen once said that texts tha nyad gcig pa and 'jig ten las das pa rma ba belonged to the same sutra and were based on sexual misconduct. I suppose he was referring to these texts. However, his statement is slightly wrong. We also found incomplete texts of Mahayanottaratantratikka and Abhidharmapradipabharti written in vartu script (long, nine lines, 70 folios). The latter text was a combination of both the root text in verse form and its commentary. There was also a palm-leaf text of Vigraha-vyavartani, with self-commentary done by Nagarjuna, written in Sankrti with Tibetan notes, at the end of which had a line "written by Nub Dharmakirti." The leaves were long and had eight lines. The author was said to be a disciple of Jo rtsa mye. There was a text of Vinaya-sutra authored by Gunaprabha, with an incomplete commentary. On its heading had a line "Annotations by Shila Akara" and at its bottom had "Written by Nub Chandrakirti in the middle spring month at Vikramashila". This text was written in Sanskrit and Tibetan scripts. The longer "IU " was written as " IU[degrees]U-". Similarly, ";U-" was written as ";"with double zhabs kyu (!Y). Except for these, the rest was written in the modern style. Vikramashila now lies in ruins, in such condition that even its trace is almost not visible. But the texts are still fresh. I think Shilaakara was Tengpa Lotsawa Tsultrim Junge, who was a disciple of Jowo Tsami Sangye Drakpa. He spent fifteen years in India, totaling the years he spent there during his all visits. He made several corrections on Vinaya and nyis khri texts. He was said to have brought many Indian texts to Tibet. These Tibetan texts were believed to belong to him. He was born shortly after the death of Ngok Loden Sherab. According to Golo, he was the chief lama of Chak Drachompa. His time was marked with the period when many Tibetans used to visit Vikramashila. It is said that the University had a common dormitory for the Tibetans.

There were some disarrayed texts of Tibetan commentary on the Madhyamika written on palm leaves in Indian and Tibetan languages in Nub's handwriting. This was a commentary on the Prasana-pada. Its homage verse praised Nagarjuna's special qualaties. The text describes how Chandrakirti supported the doctrine of middle-way in order to fulfill the wishes of Buddhagaya. Chandrakirti recalled his previous life in which he was born as Buddhagaya and strove for his wishes ('bad pa'o). Some writers write "'o" like this. In this text, the translator had erroneously written that in Tibet "darkness" is considered as non-material, and said that the word "bhya" of Abhya-bhya means light, honour or sun. Without this means "darkness". This is a Tibetan commentary, between each two lines having annotation written in Sankrit language.
Text                 Author                 Remarks

Dohakoshatikka       --                     incomplete
Bartikalmkara        --
Sadhishanta          --
karambrit            --
Abhipodkarm          --                                     d???dbo
Panchkaramaktri      --
Anutasatabitriti     --
abyaprakash         Rajanaka and Mamta
Heksadhan            Darika
Nimasamtiti          --
bodhistamalankram    Kamalashila
Kurukulasadhana      --
Lokiteshvaramandal   --
Adibudha             --
Yogasharsh           --
Srbhatra             Sarahjananmitra
Bhuddhanamkara       Kutili
Kalachakratika       --
Mahayanlakash        --
Mulde lakshashstra   --
Kamshsra             --
Shandtotika          --
Sudrhasri            --
maha yatna


It was composed during the time of King Sirupala (of the Indian Pala Dynasty). Each line has about 130 characters. From this, we observed that Indian texts have more number of words. However, it is common that the words in the translation are more than in the source text. The main thing is that letters of Tibetan words are stacked. For example, in the Tibetan word "bsgrigs" we have to arrange seven letters. The expressive power of the words is different, so it is doubtful why there is an imbalance in the number of words. For example, "agni" is for "me" (fire), "jal" is for "chu" (water)--two or three Indian letters can be sufficed only by a single Tibetan letter.

There was a large volume of palm-leaf Tibetan manuscript, but it was so illegible that I could not read even a few words. I guess it was a Prajnaparamita text and was the original text used by a translator. There was a large well-preserved collection of mantras, such as the Five Types of Dharani (grwa lnga).
Name                               Author

Trilochana                         --
Sarahmanjuri                       --
Catursangasadhanatika              Samandrabhadra
Rahapratisavarahsynibandh          Lopon Rinchen
                                     Jungne (5)
Krishnayamaritantratikka           Kumar Chandra
Vajramrta-tantra                   Vimlapraba
Kalyankamadhanu                    Arya Nagarjuna
Pratishavidhi                      --
Kalachakratikavimalprabha          --

Yogamabarhsanda                    --
Boddhistavvatikka                  --
Jotsihabodpatra                    Bidhitachantra
gzhan sel gyi rab tu byed pa       Jnashrimitra

Tham cad mkhyen pa grub pa
Mahayogatantra
Abhidharmapratibabhisah
Dohakoshtika
Vartikalankar                      Prajagupt
Svadhishtankamavivarti             Kutli
Abhisambodhikam
Panchkamvivarti
Panchkamvivarti
Anutarasttva vivarti
Svapnvadhya
Kavyaprakash  (6)                  Rajangak Mamat

Herukasadana                       Mahasiddha Darikapad
Namsangiti
Bodhisttabavnakam                  Kamalashila
Kurukullasasadan
Lokishvarmandala
Adibuddha
Yogsarbashya
Saragarasttotra                    Swarajmitra
Buddhamaskar                       Kutli
Mahayanalakshan-
  samuchya
Vajrabhairava
Vajrabhairavatrapanjika            Kumarchandra
Vajrabhairavatantraraja
Muladevakyshastra
Kamashastra
Shatannyogatikka
Vasudhadarani
Mahamayatanra
Panini
Chandrabyakaranvivarti
Chandrabyakaran
Ashtasahasrika Prajnaparamita
Chakrasamvivarti                   Bhavbat
Vajravarahitika
Ambogpashakalparaja
Panchvishtisahtrika
  Prajnaparamita
Kriyatantravartipanchika
Anudhi
Chandrabyakaranavivarti            Chandramgomin
Chandrabyakaranavivarti            Ratanmatri
Chandrabyakaranatikka              Purnachandra
Chaturangsadhnatikka
theg pa chen po nyi zhu pa         Arya Nagarjuna
rgyan snang
mdo sde rgyan
Ashtasahasrika Prajnaparamita
rgyal dbang blo'i rab
  byed gsal ldan
le'u tshan gnyis
bde mchog gyi bstod 'grel          Bodhisattva Vajradhara
rnam bcas bsdu ba'i mdo            Pandita bshes gnyen
gdan gzhi sgrub thabs
rnam bcas bsdu ba'i mdo            Ye shes bshes gnyen
sdud 'grel                          Seng ge bzang po
Raktyamrajtantra
Samajamandala

Sub-commentary Pramanavarttika
  Manortandi

Name                               Condition

Trilochana
Sarahmanjuri                       complete
Catursangasadhanatika
Rahapratisavarahsynibandh
Krishnayamaritantratikka
Vajramrta-tantra                   11 lines in longer folios
Kalyankamadhanu                    5 pages with seven line
Pratishavidhi                      incomplete
Kalachakratikavimalprabha          46 pages in good
                                     condition
Yogamabarhsanda
Boddhistavvatikka
Jotsihabodpatra
gzhan sel gyi rab tu byed pa       Tibetan translation
                                     unavailable
Tham cad mkhyen pa grub pa         pages, short size
Mahayogatantra                     incomplete
Abhidharmapratibabhisah
Dohakoshtika                       incomplete
Vartikalankar                      incomplete
Svadhishtankamavivarti             complete
Abhisambodhikam                    complete
Panchkamvivarti
Panchkamvivarti
Anutarasttva vivarti
Svapnvadhya                        incomplete
Kavyaprakash  (6)                  incomplete; 3 pages, 8 or 9
                                     lines
Herukasadana
Namsangiti                         incomplete
Bodhisttabavnakam
Kurukullasasadan
Lokishvarmandala
Adibuddha
Yogsarbashya
Saragarasttotra
Buddhamaskar
Mahayanalakshan-
samuchya
Vajrabhairava
Vajrabhairavatrapanjika
Vajrabhairavatantraraja
Muladevakyshastra
Kamashastra                        complete
Shatannyogatikka                   complete
Vasudhadarani                      incomplete
Mahamayatanra                      complete
Panini
Chandrabyakaranvivarti
Chandrabyakaran
Ashtasahasrika Prajnaparamita      palm-leaf manuscript
                                     with fine images
                                     of the Buddha
Chakrasamvivarti                   small size, 53 pages,
                                     7 lines on each page
Vajravarahitika                    26 pages, each with
                                     seven lines
Ambogpashakalparaja
Panchvishtisahtrika
  Prajnaparamita
Kriyatantravartipanchika           Trilocandas
Anudhi
Chandrabyakaranavivarti            complete; material
                                   Tibetan traditional paper
Chandrabyakaranavivarti            long size; 200
                                     pages, 8 lines,
                                     fine condition;
                                     incomplete
Chandrabyakaranatikka
Chaturangsadhnatikka               incomplete
theg pa chen po nyi zhu pa         incomplete
rgyan snang                        incomplete
mdo sde rgyan                      incomplete
Ashtasahasrika Prajnaparamita      incomplete
rgyal dbang blo'i rab
  byed gsal ldan
le'u tshan gnyis                   incomplete

bde mchog gyi bstod 'grel
rnam bcas bsdu ba'i mdo
gdan gzhi sgrub thabs              10 pages in long
                                     size, each
                                     page with 7 lines
rnam bcas bsdu ba'i mdo            208 pages of medium
                                     size with 7 lines
sdud 'grel                         incomplete
Raktyamrajtantra                   short size, 34
                                     pages, 6 lines;
                                     complete
Samajamandala                      long size 7 pages,
                                     7 lines
Sub-commentary Pramanavarttika     paper manuscript, more
  Manortandi                         than 100 pages, with 7
                                     lines, long size


According to the biography of Sakya Pandita, he heard the yidkyi shing rta la dga' ba, a commentary on the tshadma from Pandita Shakyashri, and the above text was the one they used. There was no mention of the name of the translator. I think he might have heard the commentary from the Indian source.
Shravaka-bhumi &                       pages missing from the
  Pratyekabuddha                         beginning and end.
Samaputa                               long leaves, six folios
Vajradakinitikka                       long, 26 folios,
                                         seven lines
Shravaka-bhumi &                       short, 206 folios,
  Boddhisattvabhumi                      fine condition, 35
                                         lines, slightly damaged,
                                         It has a note saying
                                         "Offered by Lopon
                                         Wozer Senge of Yatse;
rgyal po'i lugs kyi                    short, 3 lines, 35 folios,
  btan bcos rin chen                     palm-leaf, 23 pages,
  'phreng sgyud                          small leaves, each
A grammar text with                      with 3lines
  title Vimshaka karika

"spyan gsum pas rnam                   small volume
  par dpyad pa'i dka'
  'grel gyi byed pa can
  gyi rkang pa, bsdu
  ba'i rkang pa,
  de phan gyi rkang
  pa zhugs shing
  chud ma zos"
gsang 'dus rdo rje sems   Limlavajra   short sheets, 4 folios,
  dpa'i sgrub thabs                      slightly damaged
                                         from corners
Nayabindupanchikara                    Palm-leaf,
  Kalachakra
  (tranliteration of
  Sankrit into Tibetan)
nag po pa'i rdo rje'ai                 23 folios, seven
  glu 'phags pa                          lines, long leaves,
  gnyis su med par                       first page missing,
  mnyam pa nyid                          22 sections
  ranm par rgyal
  b'ai rtogs pa


This text was of Tharlo was discovered from NyangtO MOndro Temple, and this was surely the one translated by ButOn. Therefore, the text before the line "Therefore, the solary system of the thousand was blesssed..." were gone with the missing folios. The rest was in fine condition. This is only the Kangyur text translated from Chinese sources.

Kriyasmuchar Mahasidha Darwan.

We searched everywhere, including the residences where there were Indian texts, in the back of the garden, even in garbage heaps, but we did not find more Indian manuscripts other than the above-mentioned ones. There might still be some Indian texts mixed with large volumes of texts. So, interested people are requested to find them. It is indeed difficult to read the Indian texts, but I write here with great effort thinking that it would be beneficial to clarify doubts on even a few terms. Some translate texts from Tibetan to MOn language in lanza script, which is then decorated by pata design and dragons in the borders. After three days, even the writer himself does not understand what he has written. Instead of putting effort in such works, it is better to simplify it by writing Indian language correctly, even if they are extremely difficult terms, to try to make it easy. By so doing, then even if there are no results, one does not have to feel embarrassed.

After that, we arrived at the Ngor Evam Monastery, the monastic seat of Khedrup Chenpo Kunzang (mkhas grub chen po kun bzang). Because there are many monks from Kham in the monastery, the presence of Kunkhen Gorampa seems to be still fresh there. The texts of Ngorchen are found in the lower room of Khangsar Labrang (khang gsar bla brang). There were a complete Tengyur volume, which are all in fine condition. There are more than 30 volumes of small and large Indian texts. The fourth part of the One Hundred Thousand Verses Prajnaparamita was in very fine condition. According to the Blue Annals, I think this is the one offered by a Nepalese trader to the Sakyapas.

In the past, there was not a tradition of writing many texts, and the contents of the texts were passed from a teacher to their disciples through oral tradition. In Tibet, it was extremely difficult to get such texts. I am saying this not because I am too eager to talk about this, but because, for example, if we find a sheet of Indian manuscripts of Old Tantra in Nartang, we can trust that it is the one read by Rigral and others. Those who are not aware of the rarity of Indian texts should not spread many rumours.

There were a texts of commentary on Bhakshyatriti, commentary on the Sramanera by Gyalsung and Pratimoksha Vow Liturgy with annotation in Tibetan by Mati. As for the last one, it is not the same as the present one we have. It has the following concluding verses:
   This Indian text of pratimoksha vow liturgy
   Was written with reverence by Mati
   To make comparative analysis and
   To clarify some doubtful meanings.
   ...(one line is missing here)
   Some such differences are found there.
   There are some correct ones
   Which should be examined by scholars.


This stanza was written in extremely beautiful calligraphy of the Tibetan uchen script in Sazang Panchen's own handwriting. The bottom half of page number 23 had been torn out. The pages were short in length with five lines, and between the lines were annotations. There is a fine Indian text of Pradipoddyotanatikka, which has five or six lines written in excellent handwriting.
Name                               Author

sgron gsal
brgyad stong

ka la' pa'i 'grel pa               Durgasingh
Supramath                          Chandra
rtsod rigs kyi 'grel pa
dga' ba'i rol mo                   Koga
Pratimoksha Sutra
legs bshad rin chen
  mdzod

chos mchog chung ba'i
  'grel pa
rtsod rigs

Sahadohakosh                       Saraha
dri med 'od

snyan ngag me long

Commentary on the
  Dakinisadhana
Commentary on the
  rdo rje snying 'grel
rdo rje gsum gyi rin
chen Kalikulashi
phreng ba
Commentary on
Hevajra Mulatantraraja
Kye rdo rje'i grub thabs           Krishnaacharya
it has
de kho na nyid 'byung ba
Second part of the Amarkosh
rang sbyin rlabs
Commentary on the Chakrasamvara
Commentary on the grammatical      Lopon Jamdrak
analysis on Ti and Si of Kalapa
One sutra without a title

Commentary on the                  Vasubandhu
  Vimshaka-karika
Commentary on the                  sher 'byung blo
  Bodhicharya Avatara
chos kyi bdud rtsi'i
  tshigs bcad

Name                               Condition

sgron gsal                         Indian text, fine condition
brgyad stong                       5 vols, some incomplete,
                                     with fine illustrations,
ka la' pa'i 'grel pa
Supramath
rtsod rigs kyi 'grel pa
dga' ba'i rol mo                   incomplete
Pratimoksha Sutra
legs bshad rin chen                collection of verses of
  mdzod                              Dharmakirti, Kalidas
                                     and other ancient scholars
chos mchog chung ba'i              complete, fine condition
  'grel pa
rtsod rigs                         2 texts, complete, good
                                     condition
Sahadohakosh                       complete
dri med 'od                        short sheets, five or six
                                   lines, excellent handwriting,
                                     one volume
snyan ngag me long                 short size, 23 pages, 8 lines
                                     complete
Commentary on the                  short size, 23 pages, 7 lines
  Dakinisadhana
Commentary on the                  31 pages, 8 or 9 lines
  rdo rje snying 'grel
rdo rje gsum gyi rin
chen Kalikulashi
phreng ba
Commentary on
Hevajra Mulatantraraja
Kye rdo rje'i grub thabs           13 pages with 6 lines;
it has                             Tibetan annotations
de kho na nyid 'byung ba
Second part of the Amarkosh
rang sbyin rlabs
Commentary on the Chakrasamvara
Commentary on the grammatical
analysis on Ti and Si of Kalapa
One sutra without a title          74 pages, at the end is a
                                     short chapter titled rtog
                                     pa chunb ngu bcom ldan
                                     mas mdzad pa
Commentary on the
  Vimshaka-karika
Commentary on the
  Bodhicharya Avatara
chos kyi bdud rtsi'i               Dhamapada and
  tshigs bcad                        Udanavarga mixed up
                                     pages


Dhamapada is the most important Buddhist text of the Theravada tradition and it has been translated into about 100 different languages. The credit for arising faith among many westerners toward Buddhism should go to it. This is the mdo phran, which belongs to phran tshegs, one of the five classes of Sutra. Most of the verses of the Tibetan tshom are also from this.

There were some manuscripts such as nags rin gyi bstod pa and one small palm-leaf manuscript with the title by Sakya Lotsawa, written in Sukhi language by stenciling on palm-leaves. There are five complete and incomplete large volumes of Eight Thousand Verses Prajnaparamita with amazing images.

Some knowledgeable monks there criticized Je Tsongkhapa for treading on an inferior path. They should not do so. It was of no use to explain to them by citing any logical reasons. Then I said to them, "If that is so, then the Dalai Lamas also follow an inferior path, for they were the followers of Je Tsongkapa." Their arguments were stopped. It is clear from this that such logic is a big trick in modern logic.

After that, via Shabshung (shab gzhung), an extraordinary holy place, where once the great pandita Mitri worked as a shepherd, we arrived at the glorious Sakya. We visited the Gorum Temple, where the texts of former Sakya masters were kept. There were several thousand volumes of scriptures in the temple. I randomly took out a large bundle of texts, which I found to be Indian manuscripts. It was a glossary on Pramanavartika written on papers in Pandita Vibhuchandra's own handwriting. In the hope of discovering some more Indian manuscripts, my companion Pandita, with the help of others, searched for Indian manuscripts in the room, but this was the only Indian manuscript we found in that room. If someone else were in our place, he would have surely been amazed to discover such a text. We then went to Chakpe Lhakang (Temple Library) which was located to the right side of a staircase which had many steps leading to Lhakang Chenmo (7). There we found the following Indian manuscripts lying amongst more than 30 volumes of Indian Buddhist texts:

Pramanavartika-bhasya--self-commentary on the first chapter of the Pramana-varttika Pramanavartika by Karnagomin--it has two versions and one is missing

The first and second chapters of Vartikalamkara by Prajnakaragupta--the leaves are broad with a pointed end and contain 13 lines. It was written at Sa ska by Vibhutichandra, who accompanied his teacher Mahapandita Sakyashri to Tibet, in his own handwriting. At the end, there were many short verses in Indian language that show that he faced great difficulties at borders. According to Taranatha's 'Khri don ldan lhan thabs, Vibhutichandra did not prostrate to Jetsun Drakpa, so he was not attended well.
Name                        Author           Description

Amarmkoshtika               Chandrakirti     incomplete
Navshloka prajnaparamita                     complete
Astashasrika-tayata         Kambalapa
Aryagulidhrna and                            complete
  Aryamgulikalpa
Akahsdhan                                    complete
Manjushriguhyachakra                         incomplete
Vinayasutravrtti            Gunaprabha
Prtimokshsutratika                           incomplete
Vinayakarka                 Vishakh
Bodhicharya Avatara         Shantideva
Triskandeshana                               complete
Mahamayatantratika
Yogacharyabhumi             Asanga
Ashtasahasrika              Ratnakarasanti
  Prajnaparamita
Adhyardhashataka            Matrceta
Dasrasyanam                 Nagarjuna        complete
Chandravyarkaran                             incomplete
Ashtasahasrika                               incomplete
  Prajnaparamita
Yugtipradip                                  complete
Guyasamaja mandalopayika    Badrapath        -
Dashbumika sutra                             incomplete
Karandavayu Sutra                            incomplete
Saddharma Pundarika Sutra                    complete
Panchraksha                                  complete
Ashtasahasrika                               incomplete
  Prajnaparamita
Prajnaparamita Sutras                        3 sets
Shikshasamuchya             Shantideva       incomplete
Poshdhanushamsa                              incomplete
Visanatar-jataka                             Sinhalese
dri-med 'od                                  Sinhalese, incomplete


The last two texts in the Sinhalese language were written (in Sri Lanka) and were brought to Tibet by Nagrin (nags rin), abbot of Dukhor. These are the Indian manuscripts we found in Tibet. There was an amazing Indian manuscript written on roll-papers being preserved at Gorum Monastery.

Tanak Thupten Namgyal (rta nag thub bstan rnam rgyal) Monastery was in possession of some incomplete Sutra texts such as Lankavatara sutra, some pages of which were missing. Somewhere in Dakpo, may be at Dakla Gampo, we found a root text of Pramanavartika (tshad ma rnam 'grel) some pages of which were also missing. [My friend Pandita] copied it and took it to India. At the library of Kundeling Monastery in Lhasa, we found a short-length text containing the commentary by Shantirakshita on logic. Pandita copied it also. There were also Ashtasahasrika Prajnaparamita and Namasangirti (mtshan brjod). We also found a copy of Tibetan work Supplementary Chapters to Bashe Annals (sba bzhedzhabs btags ma), which is rare to find.

At Nartang, we did not find even a single page of Indian manuscript despite making a thorough search. There were more that 500 volumes of [Tibetan] texts that were said to belong to Chim-rnam (8). There were commentaries to the Bodhicarya Avatara which titles I had never heard, such as chu mig ma and yang dgon ma. The one most amazing thing is that there are two pairs of model of Bodhgaya, including the Mahabodhi Temple and all its sacred places--one constructed from black stones and the other made from white sandalwood. We were told that the stone one was brought from India. Regarding the quality of the stone, they were the same as that found along Sitavana and Bodhgaya. The wooden model was said to have been commissioned by Chim Namka Drakpa and constructed in China. If we compare all four--the models, the real Bodhgaya, Comden's Flower Ornament: Exegetical Commentary on Prama Gaviniucaya of Dharmakirti (rgyan gyi me tog) (9) and the Chak Lotsawa's travel diary--they appeared to be done by one person. Some Tibetan lamas say that this Bodhgaya was named by some Tibetan lamas who arrived in India, and the real one is somewhere in the north. We should ignore this kind of deceptive statement, just as we spew sputum from our mouth. Though we had the greatest expectation on Samye treasury to possess Indian manuscripts, we were told that there was nothing those days, and it seemed true.

The canons of the Theravedic tradition of Sri Lanka written in Magadhi cited in the above list are followed by Indian Buddhist manuscripts. Those were what we found. Tibet still has the highest number of Indian manuscripts. Among them, a commentary titled yid kyi shing rta la dga' ba and Karnagomin's works are available nowhere else in the world except in Tibet--I am not sure if they are found in the library of the land of northern Shambhala. This is also true of other Indian manuscripts such as phal chen dul ba, ye shes dpal gyi tshad ma, rdo rje mkha' 'gro'i 'grel pa as well as Bodhisattva Bhumi and Tantra Pitaka. Other Indian manuscripts are also in the same condition. Therefore, it is extremely important to preserve these texts and not let them fall into the hands of cunning and greedy people of other countries. Those helpless people like me are needlessly worrying about these texts. Henceforth, it is extremely important to beware of cunning Indian thieves who bear the name pandita. These Indian manuscripts are very important. Moreover, for easy location of these texts in our country, I have listed them here. I have also made a list of cannons of Theravada and Indian texts that are important for us. Among them are many single page manuscripts, which could be very useful to distinguish whether those Tantra patikas are Indian or Tibetan. Without listening to those who have renounced the world and say everything is unessential, one should seek the joy of attaining new knowledge.

Tavelling southwards from Sakya, crossing the Maja (rma bya), we arrived in Drangso (drang so) [in Tsang]. In the north of that region, there is the famous sacred site called Gyalshri (rgyal shri), the meditative cloister of naked ascetics, located on the northern bank of the river. When I approached it, I found it a dusty mountain. Crossing Dingri (ding ri) and Nyanang (gnya' nang), we arrived in Nepal. Throughout the journey, Pandita treated me very kindly, so I did not face much hardship. However, without any particular reason I had melancholic feelings several times. Here I shall not bother to narrate all the experiences that I had during the journey, as this would eclipse the main theme of this book.

Nepal is situated on a plain surrounded by mountains. One third of its population is of Tibetan origin. There are many names of places such as Phenpo ('phan po), Phamtang (pham thang) and Tamang (rta mang), Tsangkhug (gtsang khug) and so forth, which are similar to Tibetan names. Some homes have religious texts written the in Tibetan script but are difficult to read. As for their language, they say "gcig ga" for "gcig", "gnyis ka" for "gnyis", "gsum ga" for "gsum", "mig ga" for "mig", "rna po" for "rna", "sne" for "sna", "la lag" for "lag pa" and so on. It seems to be a new Tibetan language. These are aboriginal Nepalese people. Later, Nepal was occupied by Gorkhas, who are descendants of Rajputs, one of the Indian races. I am sure that during the reigns of Manglon Mangtsen (mang blon mang btsan), Tride Tsuktsen (khri lde gtsug btsan) and other Tibetan kings, this whole country was under the rule of Tibet. This shall be discussed in the later chapters rather than creating unnecessary controversy here.

It was said that when Lama Ralo (rwa lo tswa ba) visited Nepal, there were only about 500 buildings there. Nowadays, it has widely flourished so much that there are more than 20,000 buildings in Yambu alone.

We met Hemaraja Sarman (gser rgyal), the royal court chaplain of Nepal. He is said to be very famous in India and Nepal for being expert in all the Buddhist and non-Buddhist doctrines, which are as wide as an ocean. When the Hindus invaded Nepal, they overwhelmed the few Buddhist inhabitants, and he was the one who was responsible for it. He practised Vedic rituals. I heard that once he said that there was an obstruction to the king's life and a ritual should be performed so that he could regain life. He constructed a hollow woman's figure out of gold. The king was put inside the woman's image and taken out from the bottom of the body, pretending that he was reborn from the womb of the woman. He took the golden image as a reward for his ritual performance. He had some disordered texts of Pramanavartika, composed by him. I read the Tibetan text and they [pandita and others] translated it into Hindi and arranged the text in order. In refutation of the Vedic view, there was "eat dog's meat" in the Tibetan text, but there was only "eat meat" in the Indian text. He said, "Your lama translator had a bad feeling towards us, so he inserted the word." At that everyone laughed. The Indian text does not say anything about whether this is ethically right or wrong, it seems true that the word was inserted by Sakya Pandita.

One day, he [Hemaraja] told us that modern researchers had found that the brain reflects everything that is in the mind. He further said that from the brain, we could tell whether the person is learned or not, as well as about his inner feelings, such as desire and hatred. According to him, we can tell exactly without error the level of a person's education or knowledge. However, the brain itself, which looks like curd, is a non-living thing. The element of the brain that is responsible for sense is separate from the body. We spent half a day in discussion on this, amidst laughter. Some call this part of the brain alayavijnana, which means all ground consciousness. Some call it akash, while some call it atma. It is also called neutron, or selfless. The fact is that it is self or consciousness (atma). In India, some new studies say that "self" is in the brain and that it is permanent (similar to modern science).

Hemaraja was around seventy years old, with gray hair and a big paunch. He used to recite Sanskrit verses in a very enthralling tune. Even some of his servants talked about pramanavarttika. They told me that they wished to meet a real Tibetan scholar. He narrated to me the tale of The Taker of Girls (gzhon nu ma len) (10) and I have written it separately. He said that by reading Pramanavartika, one could understand many essential meanings of Zhonumalen. The custom of keeping a priest in the king's court was popular in India, and it still exists in some small independent regions. The priest reads Vedic texts and performs rituals for the king, so they are called prohit, or "mdun na 'don" in Tibetan, meaning "the one who is present near the king". Tibetans later used the title "mdun na 'don" as a title for the royal ministers. Lotsawa Shambhala remarked: "There were only Redapa (re mda' ba) and myself in Tibet who can identify Liyul." This is quite true. Nowadays, everyone mistakes Liyul for Nepal, and says that everything including Gopalgandh mentioned in the Prophecy about Liyul (Li yul lung bstan) (Kamsadesha-vyakarana) are in this country [Nepal]. Liyul is called Khotan by Tibetans, and Xinjiang or Hotan by the Chinese. It has India to the west and Amdo to the east. Indians call it Kamsadesh (the Land of Jade).

The Chinese Emperor Jayang and his minster Changsho together conquered this land and established their capital there; one can ask Chinese historians for confirmation. The Goma River and Yutian as well as Shiti are still in this country maintaining their original names. According to Galo (sga lo) and others, Tibet is to the south of Shiti. Drolungpa (gro lugng pa) said, "To the east and west of India are Khotan and Nepal." He is correct in mentioning Khotan and Nepal separately. A prophecy said that Tibet and Sum pa would conquer this land. Regarding this, not long after Songtsen's reign, Tibet conquered Khotan and divided it into five administrative divisions called the "five ten-thousand families." There are ruins of many old Tibetan army camps from where many Indian and Tibetan Buddhist manuscripts and images of deities are discovered beneath sand even these days. Many of them were taken to India and I saw them preserved in the Indian capital city. The ruins of Goshranga, or Langru Temple, are also in Khotan. Presently, the place has become like a native land of Hetien and it is said that they have an important sacred place called Hama there. Hetien people in Dome have come from this land. In the rgyags rngan chen mo, Longchenpa (11) said, "lcang ra rmug po (in Khotan) and so forth are in the country of Sokpo." This is quite true.

After crossing Chandragri, a mountain to the southwest of Nepal, we soon happened upon the Indian railway track. At the age of 32, on the 18th day of the last winter month, I drank water from the Ganges. I spent the entire winter in Patliputra, with a melancholic feeling, just like a bee fallen into a lake.

Notes

(1.) Zhang Nanam Dorje Wangchuk (976-1060) founded the temple in 1012.

(2.) Lachen Gongpa Rapsel: Tibetan Vinaya master who preserved the Vinaya lineage during the period of disruption in the ninth century.

(3.) The distance between the tips of the thump and the middle finger.

(4.) The medium version of Madhyamaka-hrdaya-karika. This is the root text and not a commentary.

(5.) slob dpon rin chen 'byung gnas.

(6.) This text is nowadays prescribed as a course for students.

(7.) It was built by Phak-pa (1251-80 AD).

(8.) Chim Namkha Drak (mchims nam mkha' grags, 1210-1285) was the seventh abbot of Nartang Monastery.

(9.) Full title: tshad ma'i bstan bcos sde bdun rgyan gyi me tog ces bya ba bzhugs so (Exegetical commentary on Prama Gaviniucaya of Dharmakirti).

(10.) Zhonumalen (The Taker of Girls) is a Tibetan name of the teacher of Vaishnavas. See Jeffrey Hopkins, Maps of the Profound, (Ithaca, NY: Snow Lion Publications, 2003), 134.

(11.) Kunkhyen Longchen Ramjam (1308-1363), a major lineage master and writer of the Nyingma lineage.

* This is the first chapter of Gendun Chophel's Golden Plain: Pilgrimage to Various Holy Places in Tibet and India (rgyal khams rig pas bskor ba'i gtam rgyud gser gyi thang ma). Translated by Yeshi Dhondup.
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Author:Chophel, Gendun
Publication:The Tibet Journal
Date:Dec 22, 2012
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