Wylie:Grub chen dam pa sangs rgyas nas brgyud pa'i dam chos sdug bsngal zhi byed kyi lam lnga'i khrid yig dri med snang ba grub pa mchog gi zhal lung
གྲུབ་ཆེན་དམ་པ་སངས་རྒྱས་ནས་བརྒྱུད་པའི་དམ་ཆོས་སྡུག་བསྔལ་ཞི་བྱེད་ཀྱི་ལམ་ལྔ་ ་ ་ ་
grub chen dam pa sangs rgyas nas brgyud pa'i dam chos sdug bsngal zhi byed kyi lam lnga'i khrid yig dri med snang ba grub pa mchog gi zhal lung
Stainless Appearance—Words of the Supreme Adept: A Guidebook to the Five Paths of the Holy Dharma Pacification of Suffering from the Lineage of the Adept Dampa
Sönam Pal of Nyedo Monastery (1216–1277) was often just called “The All-Knowing” or “Omniscient One.” His accomplishments as recounted in The Blue Annals make it clear why that was so, yet this is not an uncommon title, which has led to some problems of identification. He was the eldest of three sons of Mawai Senge (also known as Tsöndru Senge), who was one of the “three family incarnate siblings” (rigs gsum sprul pa’i sku mched). The other two were Rokchen Sherap Özer (or Rokben) and Zhikpo Nyima Senge, all of them disciples of Gyalwa Tene. Sönam Pal, in turn, had three sons known as the Kunga Siblings, all of whom also figure in the lineage of the later transmission of Pacification. Thus it seems to have become a family affair for a while at least. In fact, it might have happened earlier if Gyalwa Tene’s heir-apparent son had not died at an early age. However, actual offspring and “spiritual sons” are sometimes confused, and it should be noted that in Dampa’s biography, five entirely different sons are listed for Sönam Pal. This is because the author, Khamnyön Dharma Senge, apparently misread the information in The Blue Annals, which in fact assigns those five to the other important lineage holder, his cousin Trulzhik Darma Senge. Many who were in the lineage were associated with the monastery of Nyedo, and thus “Nyedowa” often precedes their names. Nyedo Monastery was established in the thirteenth century and reportedly offered to Rokben (Sönam Pal’s uncle), who instead passed it to his brother Tsöndru Mawai Senge in 1208. Sönam Pal was installed there in 1229. This monastery was the seat of a branch of the Che (lce) lineage, part of the middle transmission, and the teachings followed there were both Pacification and the Kālachakra. According to the short biography in the Treasury of Names, Sönam Pal was a master of Kālachakra, as well as almost everything else.
The lineage held by All-Knowing Sönam Pal is often called simply the “Guide to Five Paths” (lam lnga’i khrid) and, as pointed out by Kongtrul in his catalog, appears as the twenty-first lineage in the Hundred Guides of Jonang by Kunga Drölchok (1507–1566), which is sometimes considered the prototype of Kongtrul’s collection. The essential points are summarized by Kunga Drölchok in very familiar detail in Texts of the One Hundred and Eight Profound Guides. Surprisingly, it is stated there and elsewhere by Drolchok to be drawn from a guidebook by Rongtön Sheja Kunrik (1367– 1449), the great Sakya master also known as Shākya Gyaltsen. Furthermore, Kunga Drölchok says that in turn was received from another Sakya lama, Changlungpa Zhönnu Lodrö (1372–1475). These guidebook(s) have not been located, but chronologically they must have been based on that of Sönam Pal, who appears seven generations earlier than Changlungpa in one transmission line. I mention all this just because it is a rather surprising variation from the usual Pacification lineages and the Sakya connections need more investigation.
The explanation of the five paths by Sönam Pal provided the blueprint for Dharmashrī’s explanation of the Red Guide in the later transmission in Distilled Elixir. The version here in The Treasury of Precious Instructions has been augmented by Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo, who probably added the interlinear notes. In the catalog, Kongtrul states specifically that the verses at the beginning and the end were added by Khyentse, but then in typical safe mode adds “et cetera” (la sogs pa), so it is difficult to say exactly what has been altered or added without an original edition. But to judge by Dharmashrī’s copy, as well as Kunga Drölchok’s summary, Sönam Pal’s work has been well preserved.
- 2 Martin, “The Early History of the Later Peacemaking Lineage.”
- 3 Khamnyön, Life Story, DV, vol. ca, pp. 218–19. Molk, Lion of Siddhas, p. 162.
- 4 ’Khrul zhig Dar ma seng ge, a.k.a. O rgyan ras pa (1223–1303). See this story in Gö Lotsāwa, Deb ther sngon po, pp. 1114–19; Roerich, BA, pp. 958–64. This figure is the source of the late Trulshik Rinpoche’s connection with Pacification.
- 5 That is according to BDRC. Also see José Cabezón’s excellent introduction to the life of Sönam Pal’s uncle Rokben, an all-important lineage holder of Pacification, in The Buddha’s Doctrine and the Nine Vehicles. But the “Omniscient One from Nyedo,” who should be Sönam Pal, is misidentified on p. 49.
- 6 Zab khrid brgya dang brgyad kyi yi ge, in DNZ, vol. 18, pp. 127–353. Also see the Wonders of the Many Dharma Doors, Khrid brgya’i spyi chings rnam par spel ba ngo mtshar chos kyi sgo mang, pp. 47–66. The connection with Rang ston Shes bya kun rig is also attested in Khamnyön, Life Story, DV, vol. ca, p 221; Molk, Lion of Siddhas, p. 164. As it turns out, the reincarnation of sPyang lung pa gZhon nu blo gros was the teacher of Kun dga’ grol mchog, and so the former’s literary production would have been available to him.
- 7 BDRC, under Zhi byed lam lnga’i brgyud pa, “transmission line.” Kunga Drolchok’s statement: Khrid nyer gcig bzhi byed lam lnga’i khrid rong ston gyi khrid yig bzhin spyang lung pa’i drung du rnyed pa gcig pu grangs su smos pa tsam byas la / (Wonders of the Many Dharma Doors, DNZ, vol. 18, p. 56).
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- Translator's notes
- Note from Ringu Tulku
- The Instructions on the Five Paths of Shi-Je Originating from the Noble Siddha Pha Dampa Sangye Called "The Words of the Unstained Vision".
- Notes on the text itself
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- Genre from Richard Barron's Catalog
- Instruction manual
- Genre from dkar chag
- gdams khrid
- BDRC Link
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- Other Translations
- Commentary(s) of this Text in the DNZ
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Information about Unicode Tibetan and the digitization of this text
As the only available unicode Tibetan text at the time, Nitartha International's version of the Paro Edition of the gdams ngag mdzod is provided here. However, note that it has not been thoroughly edited and that there may also be mistakes introduced through the conversion process. Eventually we will provide a fully edited version of the entire Shechen Edition, entered and edited multiple times by Pulahari Monastery in Nepal, but as of fall 2017 that project has not been finished. Note that the folio numbers that appear throughout were added by Nitartha Input Center at the time of input.