Rongzom Chökyi Zangpo

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Rongzom Chökyi Zangpo

Rongzom Chökyi Zangpo (Wyl. rong zom chos kyi bzang po; Skt. Dharmabhadra) aka Rongzompa lived in the 11th century. His dates have been given as 1012-1088. He was born in Tsang rong and met Atisha in his youth. He mastered the teachings of both Nyingma and Sarma traditions. He translated many works on secret mantra, some of which are preserved in the Kangyur and some of which did not survive. Likewise, many of his original writings have sadly been lost, but among those which are still to be found today are his commentary on the Guhyagarbha Tantra, his introduction to mahayana called Introduction to the Way of the Great Vehicle (theg pa chen po'i tshul la 'jug pa) and his famous Establishing All Appearances as Divine (snang ba lhar sgrub). His commentary on The Secret Essence Tantra begins with the line: “The nature of the Three Jewels is the enlightened mind,” and so it became known as The Jewel Commentary. As well as his remarkable scholarship, he also manifested many signs of his deep realization. The historian Gö Lotsawa said of him: “In this snowland of Tibet no scholar has appeared who has been his equal.”


Further Reading

  • Dudjom Rinpoche, The Nyingma School of Tibetan Buddhism, Its Fundamentals and History, trans. and ed. by Gyurme Dorje (Boston: Wisdom, 1991), pp. 703–9.
  • Nyoshul Khenpo, A Marvelous Garland of Rare Gems: Biographies of Masters of Awareness in the Dzogchen Lineage (Junction City: Padma Publications, 2005), page 53.
  • Orna Almogi, 'Sources on the Life and Works of the Eleventh Century Tibetan Scholar Rong Zom Chos Kyi Bzang Po: A Brief Survey' in Henk Bleder, ed. Tibet, Past and Present. Tibetan Studies I: Proceedings of the Ninth Seminar of the International Association for Tibetan Studies, Leiden, 2002, pp. 67-80.
  • Heidi I. Koppl, Establishing Appearances as Divine, Snow Lion, 2008.

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