Blue Annals (deb-ther sngon-po)

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

This page relates ‘Shri System (iii): Nying phug 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 14 (Great Compassion Cycle).

Chapter 1 - Shri System (iii): Nying phug pa

The siddha nying phug pa obtained from him (Candradhvaja) the sādhana of Avalokiteśvara. His parents were natives of Zhang Zhung. He was born in the year Wood Male Dog ('sing pho khyi 1094 A.D.) in the valleys of stag bde seng ge, after they had come to la stod[1] His parents fearing that he might lose his caste, took him in childhood to spu rangs.

At the age of seven, he felt faith in karma and retribution. At the age of 14, he proceeded to dbus, and came to the residence of the zangs dkar lo tsa ba who was then building the bo dong monastery.

He was ordained by khyung and received the name of chos kyi brags pa. For one month he studied the Doctrine with the Lord (rje) 'bum phrag gsum pa[2] He stayed for six years in the presence of zansdkar (lo tsa ba), and obtained the Cycle of Sa_vara, etc. He was fed at chu mig ring mo, he received ordination from mnga' ris 'jam dbyangs, when the latter came to lho brag. He obtained the Prajñāpāramitā from ‘bre shes rab ‘bar. He preached it on 15 occasions.

He studied the teachings of the kalyāṇamitra dkon mkhar with the latter’s assistant preacher. From khyung he obtained the Mādhyamaka system and the Nyāya. Further, he obtained the Teaching of rgya dmar from the latter’s assistant preacher.

From the great nur smrig pa (he obtained) the Abhidharma.

It is said that he obtained the Doctrine of Maitreya from mar pa lo tsa ba of stag tshal. This must have been (mar pa) do pa. From the kalyāṇamitra lcan ra ba he obtained the Doctrine of Maitreya according to the system of btsang.

From spa tshab lo tsa (he obtained) the Six Treatises of Mādhyamaka (dbu ma rigs tshogs drug).

From the kalyānanmitra gshen the Six Doctrines of tsa lo tsaba[3] . From mnga’ ris skyi ston the Cycle of Saṃvara according to spu hrangs lo chung. From rnog gzhun pa the Hevajra (Tantra). From dpyal kun dga’ rdo rje and snubs phag mo lungpa the Hevajra (Tantra) and the Cycle of (Vajra) Varāhi.

From mtha' bzhi the Tantra (snags) and the Vinaya.

In the intervals, he attended on the Bodhisattva Candradhvaja, and obtained from him many doctrines. He also obtained many doctrines from rgya chu mig pa bla ma lho pa.

From ‘khon gad pa kiirti [kirti?], he obtained the exposition of the Pāncakrama. From lha rje gtsang shod pa the Mahāmudra. From the Nepalese A su the Cycle of phyag chen snying po.

Under sne’u zur pa (he studied) the bka’ gdams pa doctrine. From dags po lha rje (he obtained) the Six Doctrines of Na’ro(pa).

From phar sgom, an attendant of se mkhar chung ba, he obtained the Path and Fruit Doctrine (lam ‘bras).

In general, he did not study texts of the rnying ma school, and used to say that there did not exist texts belonging to the New (Tantras) which he had not studied.

He spend eight full years in the snows of rta sgo, then six years during which time he spent either the winter or the summer in meditation, in all he spent 14 years in meditation. He developed the faculty of prescience.

The local divinity (lha btsan) of rta sgo asked him for religious instruction. He offered his life mantra (srog snying). During his residence there, jo pad attended on him.

After that he journeyed to Idog. The ācārya ldog asked him: Do you possess the faculty of prescience? He, thinking that it was improper to tell a lie to his own Teacher, answered: Yes, I do. The Teacher asked him further: What are the villagers doing? And: What is in my hand? He gave correct replies, and the ācārya convinced said: You must recite the Prajnāpāramitā. When he read the sentence the nature of the sphere of Heaven is limitless[4] , an extraordinary trance was produced in him. After that he did not differentiate between the Intuitive Knowledge of a Saint and the Knowledge of the Saint acquired after the state of concentrated trance[5] .

After that he stayed at nying phug. He constantly practiced fasting and recitation (of sacred texts). At that time he and others saw countless holy visions. He laboured extensively for the welfare of others, and passed away at the age of 93 in the year Fire Male Horse (me pho rta 1186 A.D.).

Footnotes and references:


gtsang province {R}


Sthirapala /brtan skyong/ {R}


tsa mi sangs rgyas grags pa, the famous Sanskrit scholar? {R}


nain mkha’ khams kyi ran bzhin de yang pha mtha' med. This passage is found in the Prajnāpāramitāsancayagāthā, mdo man, Vol.11, fol. 4r3b: dmigs pa rnams kyi ran bzhin de ni pha mtha' med /sems can ran bzhn gang yin de yang pha mtha' med/ nam mkha'i khams kyi ran bzhin de yang pha mtha' med/'jig rten mkhyen pa'i shes rab de yang pha mtha' med. The nature of objects is limitless. The nature of living beings is limitless. The nature of Heaven is limitless. The wisdom of Buddha is limitless {R}


(samāhita jj Jana and pṛṣṭha labdha jj Jana {R}

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