ornament of precious liberation

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“This text has the power of a direct transmission from master to student . . . Though there are several earlier translations of Ornament of Precious Liberation, this translation is the most readable and faithful.”—His Holiness the Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje

ORNAMENT OF PRECIOUS LIBERATION

Gampopa Ken Holmes Thupten Jinpa

Discover the heart of the Buddha’s teachings in this new and beautiful translation of Gampopa’s classic guidebook.

Ornament of Precious Liberation is a spiritual and literary treasure of Tibetan Buddhism and of the Kagyü lineage in particular. Laying out step-by-step the path to buddhahood that is open to us all, to read Gampopa’s text is like receiving the teachings directly from the master himself.

It is a quintessential guide to enlightenment that students will return to again and again for its insights into living an awakened life.

book information
  • Hardcover
  • 376 pages, 6.00 x 9.25 inches
  • $29.95
  • ISBN 9781614294177
  • ebook
  • 376 pages
  • $17.99
  • ISBN 9781614294320
about the author
Ornament of Precious Liberation

“Gampopa, who was also known as Dakpo Rinpoché, was born in 1079 in Dakpo district of central Tibet. He originally trained to be a physician; hence the other common title he is known by, Dakpo Lhajé (“Doctor of Dakpo”). He began his adult life as a married layman and only began intensive religious practice after experiencing the shock of his beloved wife’s sudden death when he was still in his early twenties (ca. 1100). He eventually became one of the foremost disciples of the venerable Milarepa (1040–1123), but only after extensive studies in other traditions. Before meeting Milarepa, he had received full monastic ordination at the age of twenty-five (1104) and had sought out tantric initiations in Lower Dakpo from the master Maryul Loden. He had also studied intensively in Phenyul under masters of the Kadam tradition such as Jayulpa, Nyukrumpa, and Chakri Gongkhawa. Jayulpa (or Jayulwa) Shönu Ö (1075–1138) was a student of Chengawa (one of the above-mentioned “three spiritual brothers,” along with Potowa, who were Dromtönpa’s principal students), and Nyukrumpa was in the lineage of Geshé Naljorpa Chenpo (1015–78). Gampopa sought out Milarepa only later, finally receiving the key instructions from him (especially on “inner heat,” gtum mo) for thirteen months in 1110–11. After meditating for an additional three years, he attained awakening. He tried to return to see his master Milarepa twelve years later (1123), but the master had already passed away. He continued a primarily contemplative life for some years but then began his career as spiritual teacher, which became more and more illustrious with each passing year.
Gampopa established the first Kagyü monastery, Daklha Gampo, which attracted a multitude of disciples during his lifetime. It is not for nothing  that virtually the entire Kagyü lineage in Tibet calls itself the Dakpo Kagyü (literally, “teaching lineage of Dakpo”) in his honor. Through him, a discrete lineage composed of a series of secret tantric traditions from India, and limited to a handful of advanced followers, became integrated with the main elements of basic and Mahayana Buddhism, forming the broad and accessible basis of the Kagyü teaching tradition as it is today. This broad-spectrum Buddhism was then nurtured by his four main disciples, and in particular by the Karmapa lineage of reincarnations.”
—from Stages of the Buddha’s Teachings

Other books by Gampopa:
Stages of the Buddha’s Teachings

Ornament of Precious Liberation

Ken Holmes studied Tibetan Buddhism in Dharamsala, India, before joining Samye Ling in Scotland, the first Tibetan monastery in the West, in 1970. As the center’s director of studies, Ken spends much of the year teaching at Samye Ling’s branches in Europe and Africa. Previous publications include Maitreya on Buddha Nature, Karmapa, and the novel Tibet or Not Tibet.

Other books by Ken Holmes:
Stages of the Buddha’s Teachings

Ornament of Precious Liberation

Thupten Jinpa Langri was educated in the classical Tibetan monastic academia and received the highest academic degree of Geshe Lharam (equivalent to a doctorate in divinity). Jinpa also holds a BA in philosophy and a PhD in religious studies, both from the University of Cambridge, England. Since 1985, he has been the principal translator to the Dalai Lama, accompanying him to the United States, Canada, and Europe. He has translated and edited many books by the Dalai Lama, including The World of Tibetan Buddhism, Essence of the Heart Sutra, and the New York Times bestseller Ethics for the New Millennium.
Jinpa has published scholarly articles on various aspects of Tibetan culture, Buddhism, and philosophy, and books such as Songs of Spiritual Experience: Tibetan Poems of Awakening and Insight (co-authored) and Self, Reality and Reason in Tibetan Thought. He serves on the advisory board of numerous educational and cultural organizations in North America, Europe, and India. He is currently the president and the editor-in-chief of the Institute of Tibetan Classics, a nonprofit educational organization dedicated to translating key Tibetan classics into contemporary languages. And he also currently chairs the Mind and Life Institute and the Compassion Institute.

Other books by Thupten Jinpa:
The Book of Kadam
The Tibetan Book of Everyday Wisdom
Science and Philosophy in the Indian Buddhist Classics, Vol. 1
Wisdom of the Kadam Masters
Practicing Wisdom
Essential Mind Training
The Good Heart
Mind Training
The Middle Way
Essence of the Heart Sutra

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