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[This version: 8 June 1993]


WORK: Bachelor of Arts thesis

SUBMISSION DATE:  October 1990

	South & West Asia Center,
	Faculty of Asian Studies,,
	Australian National University, 
	Canberra, ACT 0200, Australia  

NOTES:	Lama Choedak T. Yuthok, 2 Sage Close, Chisholm, Canberra, ACT 2905, Australia

an Appendix to the thesis, entitled "A Complete Catalogue Of Sakya Lam 'Bras
Literature Series", is available from the Coombspapers Anonymous FTP facility on
coombs.anu.edu.au host. For the document's name and it's directory location see
the coombspapers' top level INDEX file


(Originally this text was a Mac MsWord 3 file using "ANUIndian" font to
handle diacritical marks).

Lamdre represents one of the most precious non-canonical literatures of  Sakya
Tibetan Buddhism.  It  generally covers esoteric teachings of
Mahnuttara-yoga-tantra  and Hevajra Tantra.  The Lamdre literature is not only
the greatest historical evidence of the tradition but the greatest gift of its
masters.   Whil.
e exact dates of the Indian masters are  not easy to determine,
the preservation of their teachings in notes, manuscripts and stories has
provided primary sources for the study of this 1400 year old tradition.
The Lamdre texts are meditational and practical manuals used by hundreds of
ecclesiastics and lay practitioners of the Sakya tradition, constituting a
sacred and secret path  which past great masters have trodden.  Those who are
fortunate enough to own a set of Lamdre texts would treat them as most valuable
thing and they are taken wherever they may go.  Thus these texts are known as
"non-detachable" ['bral spas] for practitioners.  Works on Lamdre contain
sacred oral history, hagiographies of the lineage masters, instructions on
esoteric meditation practices of Hevajra Sdhana, numerous commentaries on
Hevajra Tantra, and related liturgies on rites and rituals of the Tantra.
Traditionally these texts are only accessible to the faithful and fortunate
initiates, who are then allowed to  practise the meanings of these texts.

A brief account of the origin of the selective accumulation of Lamdre works
written by scholars and Yogins during a period that spanned from the 7th to the
20th century C. E. will be useful.  Generally the entire Lamdre literature can
be divided into six main divisions:

1. Expositons on Hevajra Tantra [gu bad].
2. Classical Lamdre Manuscripts [lam 'bras glegs bam].
3. Hagiography of the Lineage Masters [bla ma brgyud pa'i rnam thar].
4. Treatises on Common Lamdre Teachings [lam 'bras tshogs bad].
5. Manuals on Uncommon Lamdre Teachings [lam 'bras slob bad].
6. Liturgy on Initiation Rites, Maala  Rituals and Hevajra Sdhana
[dba da dkyil chog sgrub thabs skor].

In addition to the expositions written by Lamdre masters and the like, there are
numerous Indian expositions gu bad or rnam 'grel on Hevajra  Tantra in the
Tibetan Buddhist canon.  They are used and consulted within and outside the
Lamdre tradition.  The classical Lamdr.
e manuscripts are pre-15th century
scriptures extracted  both from expositions and oral instructions which are
compiled and edited, and named after the colour of the wrapping cloth excluding
"Lamdre Blue Annals" [lam 'bras pod son].  Prior to 13th century,  notes on the
secret oral teachings were passed down from master to disciple and were
circulated in manuscript form.  In 13th century when carving and production of
xylographic blocks began in Tibet, selected works were compiled and edited in
the collected works of the five founding masters of Sakya [sa skya go ma la].
Beside Virpa  and other Indian authors, the earliest Lamdre authors were sa
chen kun dga' si po (1092-1158) and his sons, slob dpon bsod nams rtse mo
(1142-1182) and rje btsun grags pa rgyal mtshan (1147-1216),whose works were
published in their collected works [bka' 'bum]. This was then followed by sa
skya pa i ta kun dga' rgyal mtshan (1182-1251/52) and his nephew 'gro mgon
chos rgyal 'phags pa blo gros rgyal mtshan (1235-1280), whose works on Lamdre
are also found in their collected works.  In spite of the inclusion of the
Lamdre works by the Five Masters in their collected works, the Lamdre literature
did not become known until the emergence of separate editions of extracted
Lamdre work(s) wrapped in different coloured clothes.  The hagiographies of
Lamdre lineage masters cover one third of the entire Lamdre literature.  There
are many works on Lamdre in the bka' 'bums of Sakya masters which are not
included in this edition.  The success story of Sakyapa scholarship from the
13th to the 16th century and the glorification of individual scholars and Yogins
have led to the compilation and creation of "Collected Works" [bka' 'bum].
However the nature of the contents of Lamdre works being secret and esoteric did
not allow its disclosure through compilation and printing.  There was a
self-imposed restriction on the disclosure of Tantric instructions in almost
every tradition.  For instance, a.
 ston chos 'bar advised  Sachen not to write
or even talk to anyone about Lamdre practice for eighteen years, and only after
the lapse of  time, did Sachen began to teach and write on Lamdre.  Out of his
eleven commentaries, which were in fact commentaries to the same root text [gu
rtsa ba rdo rje tshig rka], lam 'bras gags ma, being the last one of all and
especially because of its conciseness, was compiled together with some notes and
they sealed and locked in a wooden trunk.  Although it was originally known as
"sag ubs ma," a name derived from the wooden trunk, its actual name is gags ma
since it was given to gags i ra ba dba phyug dpal, not to be confused with
gags si po rgyal mtshan, a disciple of tshogs sgom kun dga' dpal. According
to Ngorchen, since Jetsun Drakpa Gyaltshan located, selected, compiled and
wrapped this and other instructions on Lamdre in a yellow  cloth, it became
known as  "Lamdre Yellow Annals" [lam 'bras pod ser ma].1 As a matter of
interest we can see here that within one generation, this work had received
three different names much to the confusion of the historians of Lamdre
literature.  One can imagine how the discrepancies in identification of the
eleven commentaries would have arisen.  Another important Lamdre author is dmar
chos kyi rgyal po,who as a close disciple of Sapan, wrote " gu gad dmar ma "
on the basis of instructions given by Sapan which later became known as "Lamdre
Red Annals" [lam 'bras pod dmar]. In his introduction, dmar reiterates that lam
'bras gags ma was primarily used as a reference by Sapan when giving teachings
on Lamdre.  Based on these two works, the first systematic and comprehensive
Lamdre treatise, "Lamdre Black Annals" [lam 'bras pod nag], was written by bla
ma dam pa bsod nams rgyal msthan (1312-1375), who also sponsored the first
edition of the collected works of the five masters as a tribute at the funeral
observance of his deceased teacher dpal ldan se ge.   His treatise was so name.
because it was wrapped in a dark iron coloured cloth.  Beside these, there were
number of works on Lamdre written by some disciples of Drogmi and the five
masters which are not listed in this edition.

The 16th century saw the emergence of a galaxy of Lamdre scholars and masters.
In spite of the aforementioned Lamdre works named after the different colours of
the volumes, other works found in the collected works of numerous masters may
have been carved earlier but  there is no evidence of Lamdre being printed.  In
this edition of Sakya Lamdre Literature Series (S. L. L. S.), we will notice
that the works are divided into lam 'bras slob bad and lam 'bras tshogs bad.
Prior to 15th century, there was neither any literature which distinguished
between  the two lineages nor any evidence of their existence.  This system of
two lineages has been developed from a practice of mus chen dkon mchog rgyal
mtshan (1388-1469), who gave pithy instructions to bdag chen blo gros rgyal
mtshan (1444-1479) in private.  It was restricted to small number of selected
disciples, and was seldom given, as it was designed to guide advanced
individuals who were making experiential progress [myo khrid] on the basis of
the teacher's experiential advice [man ag]. The common lineage, however,
allowed a larger group of students and was given annually in Ngor monastery in
Tibet, and bore the name tshogs bad.  Dagchen Lodro Gyaltshan, who has also
written numerous works, is regarded as the first promulgator of both lineages.
Subsequently his disciples and grand-disciples, who followed the two distinct
lineages, made a vast liturgical contribution to the development of the
lineages. An obvious difference between the two is the language and style of
composition rather than the contents.  Lobshey manuals are straight forward
instructions written in the warm colloquial language of Upper Tsang, while
Tshogshey manuals use rather classical and scholastic Tibetan, with numerous
quotes from Stras  and.

or chen dkon mchog lhun grub (1497-1547), a prolific Sakya author, wrote  some
scholastic treatises on Three Visions and Three Tantras.  His works simplified
the duties of many later Lamdre masters, who made a habit of reading it in
teaching sessions, so that  it became the classical Lamdre Tshogshey manual of
Sakya and Ngor monasteries. Perhaps his works were widely read than any others.
My first introduction to Lamdre work was his "Beautiful Ornament of Three
Visions" [sna gsum mdzes rgyan] in 1970.  Later 'jam mgon a mes abs ag dba
kun dga' bsod nams (1537-1601) and pa chen ag dba chos grags's (1572-1651)
works were and are still used as alternative or supplementary to the former
manuals in Tshogshey tradition.

The uncommon Lamdre lineage was transmitted through rdo ri pa kun spas pa chen
po (1449-1524) to sgo rum kun dga' legs pa and from both of them to Tsharchen.
It remained solely as oral teachings until 'jam dbyas mkhyen brtse dba phyug
(1524-1568) and ma thos klu sgrub rgya mtsho (1523-1594) who became the sun and
moon-like disciples of tshar chen blo gsal rgya mtsho (1502-1567).  These two
eminent masters took notes on the basis of instruction heard from Tsharchen, and
wrote two complete sets of Lamdre Lobshey manuals,  which were later endorsed by
Tsharchen.   Most of these works remained as manuscripts [gzigs dpe].  In 1904
'jam mgon blo gter dba po (1847-1914)  courageously arranged and sponsored the
task of preparing xylographic blocks of seventeen volume Lamdre Lobshey
(including all the biographies) in spite of criticism from others who feared
that the printing and disclosure of the secret teachings might displease the
Dharma protectors.   Ignoring their opposition, he wrote a synthesis of the two
Lamdre Lobshey manuals and dispelled the doubts of contradiction between the two
works raised by other scholars.  Without his tireless effort and noble example
of sponsoring, editing and publishing many important Sakya works e.g. s.
thabs kun btus including lam 'bras slob bad, this edition of the  complete
collection of Lamdre (31 Volumes) could not have  materialized.  Prior to this
they were not published together since the uncommon texts were indirectly
censored from printing.

This catalogue is based on the collection of legitimate works on Lamdre
tradition written by many lineage Gurus of both traditions from Virpa  to His
Eminence Chogay Trichen Rinpoche. They are a gradual accumulation of works
compiled, edited and re-edited by numerous masters.  Naturally there are Lamdre
bibliographies and lists of received teachings [gsan yig] of early prominent
masters which do not  contain the latter works.  Notwithstanding this, we do not
see any theory to guide us how to distinguish between  the authors or works of
the two traditions.  The classification neither follow chronological order nor
are there technical reasons to indicate how the works were distinguished. If the
concept of slob bad tradition came into being after Dagchen Lodro Gyaltshan,
then all works prior to him should be tshogs bad and post Dagchen Lodro
Gyaltshan works should be slob bad.  But this does not appear to be the case.
For instance, while most works of Drakpa Gyaltshan are listed in the slob bad,
some of his works are listed in tshogs bad.  Similarly the lam 'bras gags ma
and other ten commentaries which served the basis of all works listed in this
catalogue were and are not used for either of the Lamdre teaching situation.
Separate teaching and oral transmission sessions [lu rgyun] on these
commentaries were held outside of Lamdre sessions if the commentarial lineages
and transmissions were extant.  It is essential to include the eleven
commentaries in the collection of Lamdre works since they were the first
expositions on the subject.  Eminent Lamdre scholars such as Ngawang Choedak's
works should not necessarily fall in the tshogs bad division as he has been a
recipient and promulgator of both traditions.
.  The free usage of his works
practised in both traditions is evidence of the impartiality of his works.  He
has been a great exponent of both traditions.

The emergence of this thirty one volume Sakya Lamdre Literature Series is a
welcome and new phenomenon in the history of Lamdre texts.  We may hope that
this edition can be enlarged and developed in the near future.  It amalgamates
tshogs bad, slob bad,  the eleven commentaries by Sachen, as well as many
other works related to Lamdre.  It was edited by His Holiness Sakya Trizin for
its publication undertaken by Sakya Centre, Dehra Dun in 1983.  His Holiness
explains the model of his edition in the postcript of its bibiography.  It is
published in the traditional folio style [dpe gzugs] or loose leafs which
required several years of painstaking calligraphy work by many dedicated monks
of Sakya Centre.  Thanks are due to all the monks, including Venerable Migmar
Tseten, for their dedication in making such a publication possible. For the sake
of convenience in locating the references, I have amended the title numbers
which are numbered  in sequence.  The folio numbers are given without specifying
side a or side b since odd and even numbers indicate them.  Translation of the
essential part of the Tibetan titles are provided together with their
transliterations.  Volumes are marked alphabetically; hence the first volume is
marked 'pod ka pa' Volume One.  Future editors of Lamdre texts need to consider
collecting more works on Lamdre from a wider sources e.g. bka' 'bums, which are
not included in this edition, and to develop a systematic theory of
classification  arrangements between the two traditions and different works.
end of record.