Blue Annals (deb-ther sngon-po)

by George N. Roerich | 1949 | 382,646 words | ISBN-10: 8120804716 | ISBN-13: 9788120804715

This page relates ‘Chapter on Rgya ma pa’ of the Blue Annals (deb-ther sngon-po)—An important historical book from the 15th century dealing with Tibetan Buddhism and details the spiritual doctrine and lineages of religious teachers in Tibet. This chapter belongs to Book 5 (The Sovereign Lord (Atisha)).

Chapter 9 - The Chapter on Rgya ma pa

Four sons of Dgon pa pa: Kam pa shes rab 'od and Ne’u zur pa

Kam pa shes rab 'od (1057-1131) was born with the blessing of Atīśa in 1057. On being ordained, he received the name of shes rab 'od. Later, he went to interview dgon pa pa who helped him with spiritual and material means. He possessed an immeasurable faculty of intuitive knowledge and a very great wisdom.

In the Tarkājvāla,[1] translated by nag tsho, it is stated that the text has been translated by the two–nag tsho and mkhas btsun shes rab 'od who revised the Yogacaryā Tathatā (rnal 'byor spyod pa'i de kho na nyid gtan la dbab pa), and he seems to have been this shes rab 'od. He founded the monastery of kam, where about 700 monks gathered. He died at the age of 75 in the year Iron Female Hog (lcags mo phag1131 A.D.). the kalyāṇa mitras ne’u zur pa (1042 - 1118) who was the principal disciple of dgon pa pa was born in the year Water Male Horse (chu pho rta1042 A.D.). His name was ye shes 'bar. From that time (henceforth) an excellent innate mind concentration was born in him.

Sgom pa shes rab dbang phyug offered his teaching, but sne’u zur pa was prevented for a time from going there. Later, at the age of 26, in 1067, he tried to interview with dgon pa pa, but he already retired. Sne’u zur pa waited and served dgon pa pa till he allowed to meet. He chose bhaṭṭāraka Acala (mi gyo ba) as his yi dam[2] , recited the mantra (bsnyen pa) and obtained a vision of the deity. After the death of dgon pa pa, he attended on po to ba.

Because of other’s envy, he was slandered. Po to ba felt disgust towards him. However, finally, po to ba found out that he was innocent and felt very glad. He seems to have an ability of healing. He had helped many lepers.

Later he built the monastery of sne'u zur ('phan yul). He became a friend of the Venerable mid la on the mere hearing of his name.

He was known as a manifestation of the Bodhisattva Samantabhadra. He died at the age of 77 in the year Earth Male Dog[3] .

The spiritual lineage of Spyan snga and Spyan snga

The Spiritual Lineage of sne'u zur and that of spyan snga are known as "The Holders of Precepts".[4]

Dg. Yer sgom chen po, uncle and nephew, were disciples of sne’u zur pa. Dg. Yer sgom, the Great, was born in 1090 in the family of dg. Yer lha snang. He was a disciple of the bla ma sne’u zur pa and of bya yul pa. Because he held meditation in high esteem, he was known as dg. Yer sgom. His name was gzhon nu grags pa. He built the vīhara of rin chen sgang together with the monastery (of that name). About 300 monks gathered round him. He died at the age of 82 in the year Iron Female Hare (lcags mo yos1171 A.D.).

Dbon ston rin po che, the son of bu mo stag, a younger brother of dg. Yer sgom, the Great, was known as a reincarnation of the Bodhisattva skal ldan shing rta[5] who was to become a Buddha among the thousand Buddhas of this Bhadrakalpa. He passed away at the age of 73 in the year Iron Male Horse (lcags pho rta1210 A.D.). Dbon ston occupied the abbot’s chair from 1179 to 1210.

1211 - 1241: sangs rgyas yon tan (sang yon pa) (1180 - 1241)

1242 - 1266: bde gsegs chen po (1202-1266)

1267 - 1268: gzhon nu 'bum of skam dgon (1201-1268)

1268 - 1292: sangs rgyas 'od 'byung (1230-1292)

1293 - 1334: sangs rgyas gzhon 'od (1293-1334)

1335 - 1342: The Dharmasvāmin bkras rgyal ba (bkra shis rgyal mtshan) (1280-1342)

1343 - 1344: spyan snga kun bzang pa (1272-1344)

1345 - 1346: gzhon nu seng ge ba (1316-1346)

1347 - 1360: The Dharmasvāmin bsod rgyal ba (bsod nams rgyal mtshan) (1314-1360)

1361 - 1365: sang yon pa (1311-1365) 1366 - 1368: empty.

1369 - 1389: spyan snga sangs rgyas byang chub pa (1334-1389)

1390 -1400: spyan snga kun blo ba (1342-1400)

1401 - 1436: spyan snga gzhon 'od pa

1438 - 1448: spyan snga blo gros rgyal mtshan (1390-1448)

1439 - 1440: The second blo gros rgyal mtshan (1413- )

1450 -: blo gros 'jigs med

The Chapter on rgya ma pa

Footnotes and references:


dbu ma'i snying po'i 'grel pa rtog ge 'bar ba, Tg. dbu ma, No. 3856.


sa pho khyi1118A.D., The re'u mig, JASB. No. 2/1889/, p.44, gives 1119 A.D. an Earth Hog year/sa phag/.


gdams nag pa, one of the two main sects of the bka’ gdams pas: bka’ gdams gdams Nag pa and bka’ gdams gzhung pa.


Bhāgī rathi.

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