Andy Weber spent seven years in India and Nepal studying the art of Tibetan Buddhism. His work has appeared throughout the world in numerous exhibitions and Buddhist publications.
Books, Courses & Podcasts
Tara’s Colouring Book
Exquisite line drawings of the most important figures in the Tibetan Buddhist pantheon: Shakyamuni Buddha, Chenrezig, Tara, Manjushri, and more. The artists provide detailed explanations of the figures as well as traditional coloring instructions. A great gift for meditators, fans of Himalayan art, or anyone who appreciates beauty. For all ages.
Tara’s Coloring Book
Whether you color for relaxation, stress relief, or part of your devotional practice, enjoy exquisite line drawings of the most important figures in the Tibetan Buddhist pantheon—Shakyamuni Buddha, Chenrezig, Tara, Manjushri, and more—by contemporary masters of the ancient art of Tibetan Buddhist religious painting.
Visualizing buddhas and teachers in specific detail is a traditional part of meditation. Therefore, the monks who created the beautiful, rich images that meditators would use in their practice would have to study for years to learn the precise techniques, geometry, and coloration required, handed down to them by old masters. Now, these images are available for you to color—whether for formal meditation or stress relief or just to appreciate their beauty.
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Michael Imperioli: Acting, Success, and the Buddhist Path (#105)
In this special episode of the Wisdom Podcast—recorded live as a Wisdom Dharma Chat—host Daniel Aitken speaks with Michael Imperioli, best known for his role as Christopher Moltisanti in The Sopranos, for which he won a 2004 Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series. Michael is also a practicing Tibetan Buddhist and is a student of His Eminence Garchen Rinpoche.
The conversation begins with Michael recounting his initial explorations of Buddhism. He recalls how he has been a spiritual seeker since he was young and went through a series of encounters with various mystical and shamanistic traditions before connecting with Buddhism. After achieving certain levels of success with his acting career, Michael remembers feeling that something was lacking in his life and describes how Buddhist instruction and practice helped him to address this.
Michael also discusses the ways in which acting and Buddhist practice dovetail with each other, describing how some of the techniques of method acting are akin to Tibetan practices in terms of movement, vocalization, imagination, and concentration. Noting these similarities, Michael explains how acting primed him, not necessarily for Buddhist practice itself, but for developing the motivation to learn more and delve deeper into the Vajrayana tradition.
Please note: this episode was recorded over Zoom as a Wisdom Dharma Chat and is presented here in its original form, but with the Q&A portion removed. Click here to learn about past and future Dharma Chats.
Anne C. Klein: Finding Wholeness in the Dzogchen Path (#104)
In this special episode of the Wisdom Podcast—recorded live as a Wisdom Dharma Chat—host Daniel Aitken speaks with Anne C. Klein (Lama Rigzin Drolma), professor of religion at Rice University and a founding director and resident teacher of Dawn Mountain, a center for contemplative study and practice in Houston.
Anne brings us into the world of translating Tibetan and of the Nyingma tradition. She tells us how she met her teacher Khetsun Sangpo Rinpoche, a known scholar and hidden Dzogchen master, and how his teachings led to her translation of the book Strand of Jewels.
Anne also discusses her relationship with Adzom Rinpoche, telling us how they initially met in Tibet many years ago and about their upcoming book with Wisdom about Jigme Lingpa’s pithy Dzogchen teachings. She illuminates how Dzogchen contributes to a developing sense of wholeness, and how as a fruitional path it helps one uncover how the true nature of all things is wisdom.
Please note: this episode was recorded over Zoom as a Wisdom Dharma Chat and is presented here in its original form, but with the Q&A portion removed. Click here to learn about past and future Dharma Chats.
This episode features a song from Jetsun Khacho Wangmo. You can hear more of her music here.
Anne C. Klein is professor and former chair of the religion department at Rice University. She is also a lama in the Nyingma tradition and a founding director and resident teacher of Dawn Mountain, a center for contemplative study and practice in Houston.
Below are the photos mentioned in the episode.
Jetsun Khacho Wangmo:
Thank You, Percival
What happens if you don’t take the time to train your new puppy?
Things can go very badly!
What happens if you don’t take the time to train your own mind?
Things can go even worse!
This is the story of Percival the puppy and his housetraining. Learn alongside Percival how to juggle your emotions and distractions and find inner peace.
The Play of Mahamudra
Coming soon! This book will be published in May 2021. Enter your name and email below to be notified when the book is available for purchase.
“This new collected edition of Khenpo Migmar Tseten’s Play of Mahamudra volumes constitutes a veritable treasure for all who are deeply engaged on the path to enlightenment. Khenpo Migmar’s translation of Mahasiddha Virupa’s Treasury of Dohas and of Sachen Kunga Nyingpo’s Praise to Virupa makes us intimately familiar with the essence of these root texts, and his elucidation of the Dohas offers us a deep and clear understanding of their core meaning. Anyone who truly contemplates on Mahasiddha Virupa’s words is certain to attain realization.”
—His Holiness the Sakya Trichen
In this collection, renowned Tibetan Buddhist teacher Lama Migmar Tseten provides essential commentary on the mystical songs of the Indian Buddhist rebel-saint Virupa. One of the most celebrated tantric masters of Buddhist India, Virupa’s songs describe his realization of mahamudra, the ultimate nature of reality. Intimate and highly engaging, The Play of Mahamudra unpacks these songs with meticulous clarity, making Virupa’s insights accessible to modern readers.
Venerable Thubten Chodron: In Praise of Great Compassion (#102)
For this episode of the Wisdom Podcast, host Daniel Aitken speaks with returning guest and author Venerable Thubten Chodron about her latest book with His Holiness the Dalai Lama, In Praise of Great Compassion. This is the fifth volume in the Library of Wisdom and Compassion series, which continues the Dalai Lama’s teachings on the path to awakening.
Ven. Chodron has been working on this series for the past decade in consultation with the Dalai Lama as a set of foundational teachings that help contextualize Tibetan Buddhist teachings for those coming from a Western background. You’ll hear her describe the process of compiling and writing these texts, including the experience of sitting through multi-day interviews with the Dalai Lama, geshes, and translators. She and Daniel then dive into the content of the newest volume in the series. They discuss and compare the four immeasurables across multiple Buddhist traditions, before turning to various conceptions of what it means to become an arhat versus a buddha, as well as the role of compassion in generating bodhicitta.
Ven. Chodron is the abbess and founder of Sravasti Abbey in Newport, Washington. She has practiced the Buddha’s teachings for over thirty-five years, and has studied extensively with His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Tsenzhap Serkhong Rinpoche, Lama Zopa Rinpoche, and Lama Thubten Yeshe, among many other Tibetan masters.
“Gharwang Rinpoche’s work serves as a definitive manual, guiding aspiring mahāmudrā students along the complete path, beginning with a clear presentation of the preliminaries, through a detailed presentation of śamatha and vipaśyanā, and concluding with enlightening instructions on the actualization of the result.”
—from the foreword by His Holiness the Sakya Trichen
In this book, His Eminence the Twelfth Zurmang Gharwang Rinpoche offers illuminating commentary on Bokar Rinpoche’s pithy teaching A Concise Commentary on the Ocean of Definitive Meaning, expanding and unlocking it for the reader, showing us the way to understand the very nature of our own minds.
“The line between saṃsāra and nirvāṇa is very thin. This is because saṃsāra is simply the projection of our minds, a projection created by confusion. Nirvāṇa is simply freedom from this confusion. You can sit on either side of the line between saṃsāra and nirvāṇa. It’s up to you. But although the line is very thin, it takes extraordinary skill and profound wisdom to traverse the path from one side to the other—to dissolve the division itself. This book and these teachings are intended to serve as support for that journey.”
—from H.E. Zurmang Gharwang Rinpoche’s introduction
The Dharma of Poetry
In The Dharma of Poetry, John Brehm shows how poems can open up new ways of thinking, feeling, and being in the world. Brehm demonstrates the practice of mindfully entering a poem, with an alertness, curiosity, and open-hearted responsiveness very much like the attention we cultivate in meditation. Complete with poetry-related meditations and writing prompts, this collection of lively, elegantly written essays can be read as a standalone book or as a companion to the author’s acclaimed anthology The Poetry of Impermanence, Mindfulness, and Joy.
Sounds of Innate Freedom
Sounds of Innate Freedom: The Indian Texts of Mahāmudrā are historic volumes containing many of the first English translations of classic mahāmudrā literature. The texts and songs in these volumes constitute the large compendium called The Indian Texts of the Mahāmudrā of Definitive Meaning, compiled by the Seventh Karmapa, Chötra Gyatso (1456–1539). The collection offers a brilliant window into the richness of the vast ocean of Indian Mahāmudrā texts cherished in all Tibetan lineages, particularly in the Kagyü tradition, giving us a clear view of the sources of one of the world’s great contemplative traditions.
This first volume in publication contains the majority of songs of realization, consisting of dohās (couplets), vajragītis (vajra songs), and caryāgītis (conduct songs), all lucidly expressing the inexpressible. These songs offer readers a feast of profound and powerful pith instructions uttered by numerous male and female mahasiddhas, yogīs, and ḍākinīs, often in the context of ritual gaṇacakras and initially kept in their secret treasury. Displaying a vast range of themes, styles, and metaphors, they all point to the single true nature of the mind—mahāmudrā—in inspiring ways and from different angles, using a dazzling array of skillful means to penetrate the sole vital point of buddhahood being found nowhere but within our own mind. Reading and singing these songs of mystical wonder, bliss, and ecstatic freedom, and contemplating their meaning in meditation, will open doors to spiritual experience for us today just as it has for countless practitioners in the past.
The Esoteric Community Tantra with The Illuminating Lamp
This volume is a translation of the first twelve chapters of The Glorious Esoteric Community Great King of Tantras (Śrī Guhyasamāja Mahā-tantra-rāja), along with the commentary called The Illuminating Lamp (Pradīpoddyotana-nāma-ṭīkā), a commentary in Sanskrit on this tantra by the seventh-century Buddhist intellectual and tantric scholar-adept Chandrakīrti. Regarded by Indo-Tibetan tradition as the esoteric scripture wherein the Buddha revealed in greatest detail the actual psycho-physical process of his enlightenment, The Esoteric Community Tantra is a preeminent text of the class of scriptures known to Indian Buddhist scholar-adepts as great yoga tantra, and later to their Tibetan successors as unexcelled yoga tantra. The Illuminating Lamp presents a system of interpretive guidelines according to which the cryptic meanings of all tantras might be extracted in order to engage the ritual and yogic practices taught therein. Applying its interpretive strategies to the text of The Esoteric Community Tantra, The Illuminating Lamp articulates a synthetic, “vajra vehicle” (vajrayāna) discourse that locates tantric practices and ideals squarely within the cosmological and institutional frameworks of exoteric Mahāyāna Buddhism.
The Chakrasamvara Root Tantra
A key text for one of the most important Buddhist tantric traditions, the Chakrasamvara Root Tantra has been passed down to us from the ancient mahasiddhas and yogis of India. This foundational ritual text is one of the earliest of the yogini tantras—tantric scriptures that emphasize female deities. This melodic translation by David Gonsalez maintains the poetic structure of the original, making it ideal for practitioners and harmonious to recite. It is at once an object of devotion, a profound instruction, and a beautiful poem meant to inspire spiritual seekers.
The Dechen Ling Practice Series from Wisdom Publications is committed to furthering the vision of David Gonsalez (Venerable Losang Tsering) and the Dechen Ling Press of bringing the sacred literature of Tibet to the West by making available many never-before-translated texts.
The material in this book is strictly intended for those who have received the proper empowerments.
I See You, Buddha
An instant classic, this book will help children (and their parents) learn patience and to see the good in everyone—including themselves! It will also help children meet difficult circumstances, such as being sick, doing chores, and not getting everything they want—and help them overcome low self-esteem and negative self-talk.
I See You, Buddha is based on a chapter in the Lotus Sutra, one of the most influential Buddhist texts worldwide—a classical scripture that has inspired a whole genre of works, especially in Japan, known as Lotus Literature. The Lotus Sutra teaches the way of the bodhisattva—a being engaged in compassionate, enlightened activity in the service of all—by offering examples of what this activity might look like in the world. One such model in the text is Bodhisattva Never Disrespectful (or Never Disparaging), who, despite troubling encounters with and even harsh treatment from others, bows down respectfully to everyone, recognizing their Buddha nature and honoring their own journeys along the bodhisattva path to enlightenment—whether they know they’re future buddhas or not!
Listen to author Josh Bartok as he reads I See You, Buddha in this video reading.
Science and Philosophy in the Indian Buddhist Classics, Vol. 2
Coming soon to the Reading Room on the Wisdom Experience.
This, the second volume in the Science and Philosophy in the Indian Buddhist Classics series, focuses on the science of mind. Readers are first introduced to Buddhist conceptions of mind and consciousness and then led through traditional presentations of mental phenomena to reveal a Buddhist vision of the inner world with fascinating implications for the contemporary disciplines of cognitive science, psychology, emotion research, and philosophy of mind. Major topics include:
- The distinction between sensory and conceptual processes and the pan-Indian notion of mental consciousness
- Mental factors—specific mental states such as attention, mindfulness, and compassion—and how they relate to one another
- The unique tantric theory of subtle levels of consciousness, their connection to the subtle energies, or “winds,” that flow through channels in the human body, and what happens to each when the body and mind dissolve at the time of death
- The seven types of mental states and how they impact the process of perception
- Styles of reasoning, which Buddhists understand as a valid avenue for acquiring sound knowledge
In the final section, the volume offers what might be called Buddhist contemplative science, a presentation of the classical Buddhist understanding of the psychology behind meditation and other forms of mental training.
To present these specific ideas and their rationale, the volume weaves together passages from the works of great Buddhist thinkers like Asaṅga, Vasubandhu, Nāgārjuna, Dignāga, and Dharmakīrti. His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s introduction outlines scientific and philosophical thinking in the history of the Buddhist tradition. To provide additional context for Western readers, each of the six major topics is introduced with an essay by John D. Dunne, distinguished professor of Buddhist philosophy and contemplative practice at the University of Wisconsin. These essays connect the traditional material to contemporary debates and Western parallels, and provide helpful suggestions for further reading.
Illuminating the Intent
This work is perhaps the most influential explanation of Candrakirti’s seventh-century classic Entering the Middle Way (Madhyamakavatara).
Written as a supplement to Nagarjuna’s Fundamental Verses on the Middle Way, Candrakirti’s text integrates the central insight of Nagarjuna’s thought—the rejection of any metaphysical notion of intrinsic existence—with the well-known Mahayana framework of the ten levels of the bodhisattva, and it became the most studied presentation of Madhyamaka thought in Tibet.
Completed the year before the author’s death, Tsongkhapa’s exposition of Candrakirti’s text is recognized by the Tibetan tradition as the final standpoint of Tsongkhapa on many philosophical questions, particularly the clear distinctions it draws between the standpoints of the Madhyamaka and Cittamatra schools.
Written in exemplary Tibetan, Tsongkhapa’s work presents a wonderful marriage of rigorous Madhyamaka philosophical analysis with a detailed and subtle account of the progressively advancing mental states and spiritual maturity realized by sincere Madhyamaka practitioners.
The work remains the principal textbook for the study of Indian Madhyamaka philosophy in many Tibetan monastic colleges, and it is a principal source for many Tibetan teachers seeking to convey the intricacies of Madhyamaka philosophy to non-Tibetan audiences.
Though it is often cited and well known, this is the first full translation of this key work in a Western language.
The Diamond Cutter Sutra
In the profound teachings of the Diamond Cutter Sutra, the Buddha offers a view of the world that deconstructs our normal categories of experience to show us that what we think are real entities in the world are actually our conceptualizations. The Buddha teaches us to cut our attachment to all phenomena and to the “I,” which are empty of inherent existence, and in so doing, cut the root cause of our suffering. Yet without wise guidance we may think that because all phenomena are empty there is no need to be attached to virtue, and thus we fall into the worst trap of all—an attachment to emptiness. How do we destroy our attachment without being led astray?
With this question in mind, Dzogchen Master Khenpo Sodargye provides sparkling commentary on the Diamond Cutter Sutra so that we understand its actual meaning, thus preparing us to understand the view of the Great Perfection and Mahamudra. Before recognizing the nature of the mind, we learn we must hold on to things that are virtuous and right. Like a boat, these can help us cross a river; until we reach the other shore, it makes no sense to give them up.
The Sublime Continuum and Its Explanatory Commentary
The original Sublime Continuum Explanatory Commentary was written by Noble Asaṅga to explain the verses by the bodhisattva Maitreyanātha around the 4th CE century in North India. Here it is introduced and presented in an original translation from Sanskrit and Tibetan, with the translation of an extensive Tibetan Supercommentary by Gyaltsap Darma Rinchen (1364–1432 CE), whose work is considered to follow the view of his teacher, Tsong Khapa (1357–1419 CE).
Contemporary scholars have widely misunderstood the Buddhist Centrist teaching of emptiness, or selflessness, as either a form of nihilism or a radical skepticism. Yet Buddhist philosophers from Nāgārjuna on have shown that the negation of intrinsic reality affirms the supreme value of relative realities if accurately understood. Gyaltsap Darma Rinchen, in his Supercommentary, elucidates a highly positive theory of the “buddha-nature,” showing how the wisdom of emptiness empowers the compassionate life of the enlightened, as it is touched by its oneness with the truth body of all buddhas. With his clear study of Gyaltsap’s insight and his original English translation, Bo Jiang, Ph.D. completes his historic project of studying and presenting these works from Sanskrit and Tibetan both in Chinese and, now, English translations, in linked publications.
Originally published by the American Institute of Buddhist Studies in 2017.
Peaceful Piggy Bedtime
“It’s time to go to sleep, but some friends are sleepy, and some are not. Some are already nodding off, and some want to bounce around. Now it’s time to go from busy to peaceful. These mindful bedtime exercises will help us have a good night’s sleep.”
Bedtime can be a joy; a quiet time, a nice cuddle—a sleepy angel. Bedtime can also be a challenge; riled energy, hidden anxieties—a restless little monster! This book draws on modern science and time-tested wisdom to provide children with an effective bedtime ritual to relax the body, settle the mind, and drift into a peaceful sleep. Parents may find they sleep better, too!