Destiny Fulfilled: Je Tsongkhapa’s Education As a Song of Realisation

Lama Tsongkhapa

Lama Tsongkhapa

Destiny Fulfilled: Je Tsongkhapa’s Education As a Song of Realisation

Om! May we have happiness and excellences!

1. The eyes for the world to see higher realms of life and the freedom of enlightenment,

Resting place for those tired from wandering on the paths of cyclic existence,

The root of happiness and excellence, my kind Gurus

And the Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure (Manjushri)—I bow to your feet!

2. To gather a great store [of merit and wisdom] with little effort,

Rejoicing in virtue is praised as best.

Particularly, regarding the past virtues collected by oneself,

If you develop, without pride, great joy in your virtues of the past

It is said these past virtues will increase even more.

3. To accomplish the purpose of this statement by the Buddha,

And also because I see many other purposes as well,

It would be good, O mind, to feel such joy!

All this I dedicate for the spread of the Teaching.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

4. In the beginning, I sought much learning.

In the middle, all teachings dawned on me as spiritual exhortation.

In the end, I practiced day and night.

I dedicated all this virtue for the dharma to flourish.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

I. Quest for Extensive Learning

5. With the darkness of confusion concerning the points to adopt or reject

Not dispelled by the lamp of perfect learning,

If you do not know even the path, what need to speak

Of entering the supreme city of liberation!

6. Therefore, not content with a partial or superficial understanding

Of the treatises of the Invincible Lord of Dharma (Ajita, or Maitreya)

And those of (the great sages) widely renowned in India

As the Six Ornaments and the Two Supreme Ones,

I studied them all in great detail.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!2

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

7. Especially for an ordinary person, the sole way

To determine the precise reality of things

Are the treatises on valid reasoning. So with much effort

I studied their difficult points again and again.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

8. Though I toiled in the treatises of sutra and tantra,

When practicing and expounding their profound meaning

I found my view had not advanced far beyond

Those who had learned nothing, and who knew even less.

9. So then I studied thoroughly all the essential keys to

Induce the correct view through the subtle dialectical reasoning

That distinguishes the profound, especially the treatises of Nagarjuna,

And resolved [all my] doubts completely!

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

10. There are two vehicles to travel to perfect enlightenment:

The Profound Vajra Vehicle and Perfection Vehicle.

Secret Mantra is said to be much superior

To the Perfection Vehicle

This is as well known as the sun and moon.

11. While accepting these words to be true,

There are some who do not ask

What is the Profound Vehicle?”

And yet assume the mantle of scholars.

12. If such people are supposed to be intelligent,

Then where are the dull-witted?

How extraordinary that anyone should neglect

An unexcelled path so difficult to meet!

13. Therefore, I entered the supreme vehicle of the Victorious Ones,

The Vajra Vehicle, even rarer than the Buddhas;

A profound treasury of the two spiritual feats

And I studied it long with much effort.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!3

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

14. Not knowing the paths of the three lower tantras,

And deciding that Highest Yoga Tantra

Is the supreme of all class of tantras,

Is just making an assertion.

15. Realising this, I familiarised myself both generally and specifically

With the three genres of Action Tantra such as

General Secret Tantra (Samanya Vidhiramguhyatantra),

True Fulfillment (Susiddhi), The Tantra Requested by Subahu (Subahupariprccha),

and Later Concentration (Dhyanottara)

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

16. Within the second class of tantra, Performance Tantra,

I studied the main Tantra, Manifest Enlightenment of Vairocana (Vairocanabhisambodhi),

And ascertained thoroughly the precise orientation

Of all Performance Tantras.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

17. Within the third class of tantra, Yoga Tantra,

I studied the main Tantras, the glorious Compendium of Reality (Tattvasamgraha),

The Explanatory Tantras such as Vajra Pinnacle (Vajrasekhara),

And enjoyed the feast of Yoga Tantra.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

18. Within the fourth class of tantra, the Highest Yoga Tantra,

I studied the Root and Explanatory Tantras and others

Renowned as the sun and moon among the Indian sages:

The Secret Community (Guhyasamaja), a father tantra,

And the yogini tantras of Vajra Laughter (Hevajra) and Supreme Bliss (Samvara).

19. I also studied the Wheel of Time Tantra (Kalachakratantra), unique amongst Tantras,

An original system of explanation different from other Sutras and Tantras,

Along with its illuminating exegesis, the Stainless Light (Vimalaprabha).

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

This is the first chapter telling how I first sought extensive learning.4

II. All Teachings Dawn As Spiritual Instruction

20. Then, with a firm, intense and enduring faith

In Manjugosha, supreme in banishing the darkness from the disciples’ minds,

I prayed in order that all scripture might dawn as spiritual instruction

And strove to fulfill all the necessary conditions.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

21. Striving thus I found a special conviction

In the stages of the path to enlightenment

Transmitted from Nagarjuna and Asanga;

And hence the Perfection of Wisdom, the best scriptures on the profound,

Dawned upon me as spiritual instructions.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

22. In this northern land, there are many,

Regardless of whether they have studied the texts on epistemology or not,

Who say there is no graduated practice of the path leading to enlightenment

In the Compendium of Valid Cognition (Pramanasamuccaya)

And the corpus of seven treatises.

23. But they also take as authoritative the permission

Granted by Manjushri to Dignaga, when he explicitly said,

Write this book. In the future it will become

The eye for all wandering beings.”

24. Seeing this to be completely illogical,

I especially looked into this and found that the Pramanasamuccaya’s opening homage

Is established by the Pramanasiddhi chapter (of Dharmakirti’s Pramanavrttika)

Through the forward and reverse logical procedures,

25. As proving Bhagawan Buddha to be an authoritative master

For those seeking liberation.

From this I found a deep conviction

That his teaching alone is the ford

For those seeking total freedom.

26. As such, all the essential points gathered as one,

Of the paths of the two Vehicles

Unfolded through the path of reasoning5

And I found a very special joy.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

27. Then I brought together Bodhisattva Level (Bodhisattvabhumi) and Ornament of Sutras

(Sutralamkara) and with much hard and proper work

All the treatises of the Invincible Dharma Lord (Maitreya)

And those following him, arose as spiritual instruction.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

28. Relying especially on the Compendium of Practices (Shikshasamuccaya),

Which grants certainty on all the points of the path

With its graded arrangement of the vast and profound teaching,

I saw clearly the many points of the supreme treatises of Nagarjuna

Such as Compendium of Sutras (Sutrasamuccaya) as stages of practice.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

29. Then relying on Buddhaguhya’s well-explained practical instructions

On the Dhyanottara, and Vairocanabhisambodhi,

All the points of the path dawned well as spiritual instruction.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

30. Seeing how the essentials of the path of the Shri Tattvasamgraha

Are incorporated in the three samadhis was not that hard,

But for the difficult way to meditate on the profound in that path

I relied on the great Pandit Buddhaguhya’s correct explanation

31. Which combined the Root, Explanatory, and Subsidiary Yoga Tantras,

And on the Stages of Meditation’s proper explanations

Of the profound practices of the three tantra classes;

And the darkness in my mind was dispelled.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

32. The ultimate of all well-spoken teachings of the Mighty Sage (Buddha)

Is the glorious Highest Yoga Tantra,

Of which the greatest and most profound6

Is the King of Tantras, the Glorious Guhyasamaja.

33. On this the supreme philosopher Nagarjuna said:

The essentials of the path are sealed in the Root Tantra

By the six limits and four ways.

And thus they must be understood through a Master’s instruction

Following the Explanatory Tantras.”

34. Acknowledging this was crucial, I acquainted myself for a long time

With even the smallest texts of the Noble Nagarjuna’s tradition of Guhyasamaja;

The ultimate core instructions contained in the Concise Sadhana (Pindavidhisadhana),

The Lamp of Integrated Practices (Charyamelapakapradipa), and the Stages of Presentation

and so on.

35. Also, relying on the lamp-like illuminator (Bright Lamp, Pradipodyotana) of the Root Tantra

And combining them with the five great Explanatory Tantras,

I studied with enormous effort;

And discovered the two stages of the Guhyasamaja, in general,

And, especially, all the essentials of the perfection stage.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

36. Through this, the essential point of many tantras,

Such as Samvara, Hevajra, and Kalachakra,

Dawned upon me as spiritual instructions.

I have explained these elsewhere,

Here, I just show a door for the discerning.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

This is the second chapter, on the middle period when all scriptural traditions arose as

spiritual instructions.

III. Constant Practice and Total Dedication

37. Having thus become a treasure of instructions,

I trained to familiarize myself with a path comprising

The common path and the exclusive path with its two stages,

The two Mahayana systems.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!7

38. It is said that the Ganges-like prayers of the bodhisattvas

Are all contained within the prayers to uphold the Holy Dharma.

Thus whatever virtue I accumulated

Was dedicated to the spread of the Sage’s Teaching.

Thinking this over, how well my destiny is fulfilled!

Thank you very much, Noble Lord Wisdom Treasure!

This is the third chapter: how at the end I practiced day and night and dedicated all virtues

to the spread of the Teaching.

39. In order to increase my own virtue enormously

And to show properly the correct way

To the many fortunate beings who possess a discerning mind

I have written this account of my education.

40. By the store of virtue attained through this process

May all beings, through this same procedure,

Maintain the unexcelled conduct of the Buddha,

And enter the path that pleases the Victorious Ones.

Colophon: Written by the Eastern Monk Tsongkhapa Lobsang Drakpa at the Triumph of Virtue Monastery on the great Nomad Mountain, with Kazhipa Rinchen Pal as scribe.

Acknowledgement: This is a revised version of the earlier translation published by the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives in The Life and Teachings of Tsongkhapa. I owe much to that translation.

Acknowledgement: I would like to thank Gavin Kilty wholeheartedly for checking my translation thoroughly and putting it into more readable English.

This translation has been prepared for the Russian teachings at Thekchen Choeling Temple, Mcleod Ganj on 19-21 December 2011. We dedicate any merit gained through this effort for justice, compassion and wisdom to spread everywhere for peace and harmony to triumph in the world.

Any remaining error in the text is mine only. I would highly appreciate anyone’s help in improving it for the benefit of others.

© December 2011 Tenzin Tsepag http://www.jangchuplamrim.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/Destiny_Fulfilled_English_TTsepag.pdf

 

Warning: Division by zero in /web/htdocs/www.sangye.it/home/altro/wp-includes/comment-template.php on line 1379