Illumination of the Hidden Meaning, Vol. 1

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Tsongkhapa David B. Gray

This is the first volume of the annotated translation of Tsong Khapa’s Illumination of the Hidden Meaning (sbas don kun gsal), a magnificent commentary on the Cakrasamvara Tantra. This is the first English translation of this important work, which marked a milestone in the history of the Tibetan understanding and practice of the Indian Buddhist tantras.

This first volume, which includes Tsong Khapa’s detailed introduction to chapters 1–24 of the 51-chapter Cakrasamvara root tantra, covers the history of the tradition, its interpretation, and a wide range of topics including the construction of the maṇḍala, the consecration therein, the decoding of mantras and their ritual applications, and details concerning the clans of the yoginīs.

The author situates the work in context, and explores in depth the sources used by Tsong Khapa in composing this commentary. He also provides detailed notes, a trilingual English–Tibetan–Sanskrit glossary, and an appendix that includes a translation of Sumatikīrti’s synopsis of the Cakrasamvara Tantra entitled the Laghusaṃvaratantrapaṭalābhisandhi, which is quoted by Tsong Khapa in its entirety in his commentary.

Together with the author’s related publications in this series—including translations of the root Cakrasamvara Tantra (2007, 2010, 2019); the critically edited Sanskrit and Tibetan texts of the root tantra (2012); and the second volume of this master Tibetan commentary (chapters 25–51), subtitled Yogic Vows, Conduct, and Ritual Praxis (2019)—the reader will have the first full study of this important tantra available in English.

book information
  • Hardcover
  • 448 pages pages, 6 x 9 inches
  • $59.95
  • ISBN 9781935011095
about the author
Illumination of the Hidden Meaning, Vol. 1

Tsongkhapa Losang Dragpa (1357–1419) was one of the finest scholar-practitioners in Tibetan Buddhism. Renowned for both his written works and his meditative accomplishments, he founded the Gelug school, which produced the lineage of the Dalai Lamas.

Other books by Tsongkhapa:
Great Treatise on the Stages of Mantra (Sngags rim chen mo)
The Middle-Length Treatise on the Stages of the Path to Enlightenment
Illuminating the Intent
Brilliantly Illuminating Lamp of the Five Stages
Illumination of the Hidden Meaning, Vol. 2
The Splendor of an Autumn Moon
Tantric Ethics
A Lamp to Illuminate the Five Stages
Tsongkhapa’s Praise for Dependent Relativity

Illumination of the Hidden Meaning, Vol. 1

David B. Gray is Bernard J. Hanley Professor of Religious Studies at Santa Clara University. He is the author of The Cakrasamvara Tantra (The Discourse of Sri Heruka): A Study and Annotated Translation (AIBS 2007); The Cakrasamvara Tantra (The Discourse of Sri Heruka): Editions of the Sanskrit and Tibetan Texts (AIBS 2009); Tsong Khapa’s Illumination of the Hidden Meaning: Mandala, Mantra, and the Cult of the Yoginis (Chapters 1–24) (AIBS 2015); Tsong Khapa’s Illumination of the Hidden Meaning: Yogic Vows, Conduct, and Ritual Praxis (Chapters 25–51) (AIBS/WP 2019).

Other books by David B. Gray:
Illumination of the Hidden Meaning, Vol. 2
The Cakrasamvara Tantra (The Discourse of Sri Heruka)

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