I am a British woman with a Bachelor’s degree in Law (qualified barrister), a Master’s Degree in Western Philosophy (King’s College, University of London) and a Master’s degree in Tibetology (University of Hamburg, Germany).
My MA thesis was awarded a first-class result (by Prof. Dorji Wangchug) and later published as a book Taranatha’s Commentary on the Heart Sutra (LTWA, 2017), with a foreword by Prof. Matthew Kapstein.
It is an important instruction text in the Dro Kalacakra tradition. For other research and translations, see this website www.dakinitranslations.com. Since 2017, after graduating from the University of Hamburg, I have been studying at a Tibetan Buddhist nunnery in India.
The purpose of the Dakini Translations and Publications website is not only to provide an independent, online resource for my own ongoing translation work and research, but also as a general source of information, activities and work by, and about, Vajrayana and Tibetan Buddhism, particularly trying to support and promote the work of female teachers, scholars, translators, practitioners and artists whenever possible.
Since 2005, after taking refuge in a private audience with the supreme head of the Karma Kagyu lineage, HH the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa, Orgyen Trinley Dorje, in India (who was the first Tibetan lama I ever met or took refuge with, as well as the first I received a Highest Tantric Empowerment, Chakrasamvara from, in Bodh Gaya 2007), I have been studying Buddhist Philosophy and Tibetan language in Europe, Nepal and India, and taking teaching and empowerments from Tibetan Buddhist masters from all major lineages, such as HH 17th Karmapa, HE Shechen Rabjam Rinpoche, HE 12th Gyaltsab Rinpoche, HE Thrangu Rinpoche, HE 8th Garchen Rinpoche, HH 14th Dalai Lama and more.
I am an English woman with a Bachelor’s degree in Law (qualified barrister), a Master’s Degree in Western Philosophy (King’s College, University of London) and a Master’s degree in Tibetology (University of Hamburg, Germany). My MA thesis was awarded a first-class result (by Prof. Dorji Wangchug) and later published as a book Taranatha’s Commentary on the Heart Sutra (LTWA, 2017), with a foreword by Prof. Matthew Kapstein. It is a Zhentong commentary on the Heart Sutra. Another translated book recently published is the Chariot that Transports to the Four Kayas by Bamda Gelek Gyamtso (LTWA, 2019), with a foreword by Dr. Cyrus Stearns. It is an important instruction text in the Dro Kalacakra tradition.
Why the name ‘Dakini Translations and Publications’? First, I am not claiming I am a dakini (although some lamas and laypeople have said so :-)). I am a very ordinary woman with lots of faults. Although, no-one ever takes issue with the founders of Wisdom Publications for lacking wisdom, do they? However, in the
Vajrayana, one of the fourteen root vows is to respect and never denigrate women, any woman. Why? Because the ‘female principle’ is seen as the nature of wisdom, and dakinis often appear in a female form. So, unless one is an awakened being (who can see who is a dakini or not) then one should be very careful! A dakini represents Dharma activity, of which translation and research is a part of such activity. However, being called a dakini is ‘not always a compliment’, as Khandro Rinpoche playfully reminds us all
Also, the Dharma translation and publications world is still (like many other fields) dominated (and run ) by men. Even the few women who are successful in the field are often sidelined, ignored or their work subtly denigrated – for more on that see my article here. As a female translator, I wanted to have a site name that not only reflects my female-ness but also as a feminine symbol in a male-dominated field. A few people have even questioned my use of ‘attractive’ photos of myself smiling and so on. To them I say, life, practice and Dharma was never supposed to be only for, and about serious, po-faced celibate men in robes!
New translations and publications will be updated and made available to view on the website, depending on certain restrictions or requirements for the texts. The work I do is in accordance with ‘right livelihood’ and thus is voluntary, on a non-profit basis, and funded by my own money or private donations. The Innate Kalacakra project was awarded the Ashoka Grant from Khyentse Foundation. Any support or sponsorship is always most welcome.
The success of this depends on the people who read and benefit from it. To share my gratitude for their support, here are just a snapshot of some of the comments made about it (by scholars and non-scholars):
“I fell over backwards when I saw her work.” “Cannot hit the heart button enough. 7 out of 7 stars. ” “I can’t pinpoint every impressive element in this article alone … there are so many!” “Pithy, brilliant and epic. Beautiful.” “An amazing trove of treasure “. “Color me impressed on every level!”