As the disciple of Tilopa and the guru of Marpa the Translator, Naropa is one of the accomplished lineage holders of the Kagyu tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. He expressed himself in the form of spiritual songs, pithy yet beautiful poems that he sang spontaneously. In this book, Khenchen Thrangu, a contemporary Karma Kagyu master, first tells the story of Naropa's life and highlights central lessons we can learn from it and then provides verse-by-verse commentary on two of his songs. Both songs contain precious instructions on Mahamudra, the direct experience of the nature of one's mind, which in this tradition is the primary means to realize ultimate reality and attain buddhahood. Thrangu Rinpoche's teaching on the first song, The View, Concisely Put, explains the view of Mahamudra in a manner suitable for Western students who are new to the subject. The second song, The Summary of Mahamudra, contains the key points of the view, meditation, conduct, and fruition of Mahamudra. Thrangu Rinpoche speaks plainly, directly, and without using any technical jargon to Westerners eager to learn the fundamentals of the Mahamudra path to enlightenment from a recognized master. As Thrangu Rinpoche says, "Mahamudra is a practice that can be done by anyone. It is an approach that engulfs any practitioner with tremendous blessings that make it very effective and easy to implement. This is especially true in our present time and especially true for Westerners because in the West there are very few obstacles in the practice of Mahamudra.
KHENCHEN THRANGU is one of the most famous and well-respected lamas in Tibetan Buddhism. He has thousands of followers and monks that he supports throughout the world, and he is the main tutor of the Seventeenth Karmapa. Born in 1933 in Kham, Rinpoche is one of the few remaining Tibetan teachers who was born before the time of the Cultural Revolution. Rinpoche's influence and experience make him an important master of the Karma Kagyu lineage, one of the largest traditions of Tibetan Buddhism.
"The Indian mahasiddha Naropa is one of the most influential figures in the history of Vajrayana Buddhism. . . . The Very Venerable Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche, our great treasure of wisdom and compassion, holds Naropa's unbroken lineage. There is no one more qualified than Rinpoche to present this wisdom tradition. Those who haven't met Naropa can meet the heart essence of his insights and deeds through this book."--Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche, author of Wild Awakening: The Heart of Mahamudra and Dzogchen "A great book from a consummate teacher. It includes translations of two critically important texts by the great Indian adept Naropa with a masterful oral commentary. Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche reaches the heights of Buddhist philosophy and the profound depths of Mahamudra meditation, all the while providing practical advice and reminding us that 'while training in a high view, please conduct yourself in accordance with the Dharma.'"--Sarah Harding, translator of Choed: The Sacred Teachings on Severance
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