a lamp to illuminate the five stages

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“Tsongkhapa’s Lamp to Illuminate the Five Stages stands as one of the greatest literary contributions to the genre of highest yoga tantra ever written. In his translation of this extremely profound text, Gavin Kilty has successfully captured both its meaning and eloquence with such precision and grace that it will stand as the benchmark to which future translations of similar material must aspire.”—David Gonsalez, translator of Source of Supreme Bliss

A LAMP TO ILLUMINATE THE FIVE STAGES

Teachings on Guhyasamāja Tantra

Tsongkhapa Gavin Kilty

First Place Winner of 2017 Shantarakshita Award for Excellence in Translation from the Tsadra Foundation

Tsongkhapa’s A Lamp to Illuminate the Five Stages (1419) is a comprehensive presentation of the highest yoga class of Buddhist tantra, especially the key practices—the so-called five stages (pancakrama)—of the advanced phase of Guhyasamāja tantra. Beginning with a thorough examination of the Indian sources, Tsongkhapa draws particularly from the writings of Nāgārjuna, Aryadeva, Candrakīrti, and Nāropā to develop a definitive understanding of the Vajrayana completion stage. Whereas in the generation stage, meditators visualize the Buddha in the form of the deity residing in a mandala palace, in the completion stage discussed in the present volume, meditators transcend ordinary consciousness and actualize the state of a buddha themselves. Among other things, Tsongkhapa’s work covers the subtle human physiology of channels and winds along with the process of dying, the bardo, and rebirth. This definitive statement on Guhyasamaja tantra profoundly affected the course of Buddhist practice in Tibet.

book information
  • Hardcover
  • 636 pages, 6.50 x 9.25 inches
  • $59.95
  • ISBN 9780861714544
  • ebook
  • 636 pages
  • $34.99
  • ISBN 9781614290353
about the author
A Lamp to Illuminate the Five Stages

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:
Illumination of the Hidden Meaning, Vol. 2
Illumination of the Hidden Meaning, Vol. 1
The Splendor of an Autumn Moon
Tantric Ethics
Tsongkhapa’s Praise for Dependent Relativity

A Lamp to Illuminate the Five Stages

Gavin Kilty has been a full-time translator for the Institute of Tibetan Classics since 2001. Before that he lived in Dharamsala, India, for fourteen years, where he spent eight years training in the traditional Geluk monastic curriculum through the medium of class and debate at the Institute of Buddhist Dialectics. He also teaches Tibetan language courses in India, Nepal, and elsewhere, and is a translation reviewer for the organization 84000, Translating the Words of the Buddha.

Other books by Gavin Kilty:
Understanding the Case Against Shukden
Mirror of Beryl
The Splendor of an Autumn Moon
Ornament of Stainless Light

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