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Old Man Basking in the Sun

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Keith Dowman

Old Man Basking in the Sun

Natural Perfection

Longchenpa's Treasury of Natural Perfection

Old Man Basking in the Sun, published in America as Natural Perfection, is the title of a translation of Longchenpa's Precious Treasury of Natural Perfection (Gnad lugs mdzod) done with commentary by Keith Dowman with a foreword by Chogyal Namkhai Norbu.

It is published in Kathmandu by Vajra Publications and the American edition is published by Wisdom Publications. The excerpts on this page are taken from the Kathmandu edition.

Appendix I: The Tibetan Text and Quotations

The Tibetan title of the root text is Gnas lugs rin po che’i mdzod, given in Sanskrit as the Tathātva-ratna-kosha-nāma, which may be rendered into English as The Precious Treasury of Natural Perfection.

This is arguably the most important of Longchenpa's seminal works grouped together as the Mdzod bdun (The Seven Treasuries).

This work was composed in the middle of the fourteenth century in Central Tibet at a hermitage called [[Gangs ri [thod dkar (above Snye phu shugs gseb]]), still a place of pilgrimage.

The title of Longchenpa's auto-commentary is Sde gsum snying po’i don ’grel gnas lugs rin po che mdzod ces bya ba’i ’grel ba (The Commentary Upon The Treasury of Natural Perfection: An Exposition of the Inner Meaning of the Three Series of Dzogchen Instruction).

The root verses seem to be paraphrastic in origin, while the illustrative quotations are overt attributions. The former may be ascribed to Longchenpa himself; the latter may have been drawn from versions of the tantras other than those to which we have access, or alternatively, edited with deep sagacity by the author himself.

Whatever the case, in virtually every instance, with some notable exceptions, Longchenpa's version in our opinion is preferable to the tantra sources.

The majority of quotations cited by Longchenpa are drawn from the tantras of the Rnying ma rgyud ’bum (The Collected Tantras of the Ancients). This collection may have been started as a handwritten compendium as early as the twelfth century as the Bairo rgyud ’bum.

A more comprehensive collection was carved in blocks in the 18th century under the auspices of Jigme Lingpa.

The three collections available today besides the Bairo rgyud ’bum are the Gting skyes (Mkhyen brtse) and Mtshams Brag editions both printed in Bhutan, which we have utilized, and the edition of the Derge Parkhang.

The most oft-quoted tantra is the Kun byed rgyal po (The Supreme Source), the principal tantra of the Dzogchen Mind Series (sems sde).

A compilation of diverse material from the early days of Dzogchen transmission in Tibet, it also includes the five earliest translations of Bairotsana such as Mi nub pa’i rgyal mtshan (The Eternal Victory Banner), also known as the rDo rje sems dpa’nam mkha’ che (The [Vast Space of Vajrasattva]]).

The Kun byed rgyal po has been partially translated by Chogyal Namkhai Norbu and Adriano Clemente (1999) as The Supreme Source, which has been a constant source of inspiration (see page references in the notes).

The second most important group of sources from within the Rnying ma rgyud ’bum is a group of texts known as the seventeen tantras of the Secret Precept Series (man ngag sde), sixteen of which Longchenpa quotes at least once in the Gnas lugs mdzod.

The most frequently cited texts belonging to this group are the Sgra thal ’gyur (Beyond the Sound), Klong drug pa (The Six Matrixes of Samantabhadra), the Seng ge rtsal rdzogs (The Rampant Lion), the Rin chen spungs pa (The Heap of Jewels) and the Rig pa rang shar (Natural Gnosis).

All of these texts—along with the Kun byed rgyal po and several others—have been transliterated into the Wylie script by Jim Valby in his digitalized text collection of Nyingma tantras, which we have used by his courtesy to identify and compare cited passages.

Another crucial text from the Rnying ma rgyud ’bum, not included amongst the seventeen tantras but quoted many times and quite extensively by Longchenpa, is the Thig le kun gsal (The Sphere of Total Illumination).

It contains a detailed explanation of Dzogchen terminology.

Besides these tantra sources, Longchenpa illustrates his themes most frequently with the revelations of the Knowledge-bearers or Masters of Gnosis (rig ’dzin; Skt. vidhyadhara), the early lineage holders.

The Khyung chen (Great Garuda) by Sri Singha, found in the Snying thig yab bzhi, is frequently quoted.

The source of the six important texts attributed to Garab Dorje has not yet come to light.

Further, Longchenpa includes only two quotes from mahayoga and two from mahayana sources; nothing from the Kanjur and nothing from Bon sources.

Abbreviations and Tibetan Sources

AD A-’dzom blocks of Rnying ma’i rgyud bcu bdun. 3 vols. New Delhi: Sanje Dorje, 1973-7.
BGB Bairo rgyud ’bum. 8 vols. Leh, 1971. See SC.
DCJ Bdud ’jom chos ’byung. Dudjom Rimpoche (1991).
JV Jim Valby (Jim Valby digitalized collection).
NLD Gnas lugs mdzod. Ed. Dodrub Chen: Gangtok, Sikkim, c. 1966 (Adzom Chogar edition).
NTY Snying thig ya bzhi. New Delhi; Sherab Gyaltsen, 1975. (From the A- ’dzom Chos sgar blocks).
PT Padma Translation Committee.
SS The Supreme Source. Namkhai Norbu and Adriano Clemente (1999).
SC Samantabhadra Collection online at the University of Virginia: <hhtp://>
TB Mtshams Brag edition of the Rnying ma rgyud ’bum. 46 vols. Thimphu, Bhutan: National Library, Royal Government of Bhutan, 1982. See also SC.
TK Gting skyes edition of the Rnying ma rgyud ’bum. 36 vols. Thimphu, Bhutan: Dingo Khyentse Rimpoche, 1973-75. See also SC.

The sources of the quotations in the text are listed below according to their classification in the collected volumes of tantras. The titles cited in the endnotes, which open each listing, translate the short Tibetan title of the text.

The extended title according to TB (except in the case of Kun byed rgal po where TK has been utilized to conform with The Supreme Source) with its translation, is also provided, followed by references in the various collected sources etc, the page references in the NLD, and finally some alternative title translations. (NB. The indices following the TB volume number are derived from the SC index.)

Mind Series Tantras

The Supreme Source: Kun byed.

Chos thams cad rdzogs pa chen po byang chub kyi sems kun byed rgyal po: "The Universal Great Perfection of Pure Mind, the Supreme Source".
TK Vol.1/1. (pp. 2-262) 84 chapters (employed only in the annotation of the Kun byed).
TB Vol.1/1 (pp. 2-192) 57 chapters.
JV #1, ff.1-200, unknown edition.

Translated in Chogyal Namkhai Norbu and Adriano Clemente (1999).
NLD: 26.4-6; 28.2-4; 28.5-7; 29.6-30.1; 32.4; 32.5; 33.6-7; 34.1-2; 35.2-4; 37.3-4; 40.1-41.1; 50.2, 50.2, 50.2-5; 51.1-7; 58.1-2; 60.6, 6-61.5; 62.1,1-5,5-6; 63.1-64.2; 64.2-4; 64.7-65.1; 65.3-4; 65.6-66.3; 69.4-5; 70.6-71.2; 76.6-77.2; 83.6-84.1; 84.3-4; 84.4-5; 84.6-85.1; 85.3-4; 85.7; 86.2-4; 86.5; 87.4-88.2; 89.2; 90.3-4; 91.1-2; 92.6-7; 94.3-5; 94.5-6; 95.1-2; 95.3-6; 95.7-96.1; 96.5-7; 97.6-98.2; 99.1-3; 5; 102.3-5; 102.5-6; 104.3; 104.4-5; 113.6-114.1; 114.4; 114.7-115.3; 116.1-2; 116.6-7; 118.3-7; 119.6-7; 121.1-2; 121.5-7; 122.3-4; 123.2-3; 127.3; 127.4-5; 128.3-4; 128.4-5; 128.6-7; 129.5-130.3; 132.7-133.1; 133.1-2; 134.1-2; 135.1-2; 135.5; 136.1-2; 137.7-138.1; 138.5-6; 138.6-7; 139.3-140.1; 140.3; 140.3-141.1; 145.2-3; 147.3-4; 147.4-5; 147.5-6; 149.5-6.
"The All-Accomplishing King" (DCJ Vol. II p. 275); "The All-Creating Monarch" (PT).

Mind Series Transmissions Translated by Bairotsana

The Eternal Victory Banner: Mi nub pa’i rgyal mtshan nam mkha’ che / Mi nub rgyal mtshan chen po.
Rdo rje sems dpa’ rang bzhin mi nub pa’i rgyal mtshan: "The Nature of Vajrasattva: The Forever-Unfurled Victory Banner".
BGB Vol. 2, kha, pp. 357-366.
Translated in Adriano Clemente (1999), and in Keith Dowman (2006).

TB Vol.1/1 Ka, pp. 106-113.
JV #26, ff. 89-96, ch. 30 of Kun byed rgyal po, unknown edition.
NLD; 129.2-3; 130.6; 130.6-7; 131.1 See also 104.3; 104.4-5; 105.3
"The Total Space of Vajrasattva", Adriano Clemente (1999).
"The Eternal Victory Banner", Keith Dowman, (2006).

The Great Garuda in Flight: Khyung chen lding ba.
BGB Vol. 2/53 pp. 366-370.
Translated in Keith Dowman, (2006).
NLD See 35.2-4; 64.7-65.1; 86.5; 128.7; 149.5-6.

Secret Precept Series Tantras

Beyond the Sound: Thal ’gyur.
Rin po che ’byung bar byed pa sgra thal ’gyur chen po’i rgyud: "The Great Tantra Beyond the Sound: A Fountain of Jewels".
TB Vol.12/1 (pp. 2-173) 6 chapters.
JV #77, ff. 386-530, Volume 10 of TK.
NLD: 96.5; 99.6-100.1; 105.6; 115.4-6; 116.4-6; 125.6-126.2; 130.5; 135.7; 136.7-137.1; 142.5-143.2; 6-144.1; 147.7-148.3
"The Penetration of Sound" (DCJ Vol. II, p. 261), "Reverberation of Sound" (PT); "The Direct Consequence", "Unimpeded Sound" (David Germano).

Beautiful Luck (The Great Tantra of): Bkra shis mdzes ldan chen po’i rgyud.
TB Vol. 12/2 (pp. 173-193) 5 chapters.
JV #64, ff. 207-232, AD.
NLD: 106.4-6.

The Blazing Lamp: sGron ma ’bar ba.
Gser gyi me tog mdzes pa rin po che sgron ma ’bar ba’i rgyud: "The Beautiful Golden Flower: The Tantra of the Precious Blazing Lamp".
TB Vol. 12/8 (pp. 467-491) 4 chapters.
JV #79, ff. 281-313, AD.
NLD: 141.6-142.1.

Direct Introduction (Tantra of): Ngo sprod spras pa’i rgyud.
Ngo sprod rin po che spras pa’i zhing khams bstan pa’i rgyud: "The Tantra of the Buddhafields of Precious Direct Introduction".
TB Vol. 12/5 (pp. 280-304) 3 chapters.
JV #69, ff. 77-109, AD.
NLD: 131.2-3.

The Garland of Pearls, Mu tig ’phreng ba.
Mu tig rin po che phreng ba’i rgyud: "The Tantra of the Precious Garland of Pearls".
TB Vol.12/6 (pp. 304-393) 8 chapters.
JV #68, ff. 417-537, AD.
NLD 112.6; 119.1-4; 126.2-5; 126.5-127.2; 141.4-5.

The Great Array of Gems (Tantra of); Nor bu ’phra bkod chen po’i rgyud.
Nor bu ’phra bkod rang gi don thams cad gsal bar byed pa’i rgyud: "The Tantra of the Great Array of Gems Illuminating the Purpose of Life".
TB Vol. 12/11 (pp. 712-777) 14 chapters.
JV #71, ff. 1-76, AD.
NLD 72.2; 142.4-5; 145.5-146.5.
"The Array of Gems" (PT).

The Heap of Jewels: Rin chen spungs pa.
Rin chen spungs pa’i yon tan chen po ston pa rgyud kyi rgyal po: "The Sovereign Tantra Revealing Great Qualities as a Heap of Jewels".
TB Vol.11/5 (pp. 757-788) 5 chapters.
JV.#82 ff. 73-114, AD.
NLD 29.3; 30.4-32.1; 42.2-43.4; 44.4-45.4; 49.2-5; 65.3; 69.1-4; 93.4; 94.1; 125.3; 133.2-4; 143.4-6.

The Heart-Mirror of Vajrasattva: Rdo rje sems dpa’ snying gi me long.
Rdo rje sems dpa’ snying gi me long gi rgyud: "The Tantra of Vajrasattva's Heart-Mirror".
TB Vol.12/3 (pp. 193-245) 8 chapters.
JV #81, ff. 315-388, AD.
NLD: 70.1-3.

The Rampant Lion: Seng ge rtsal rdzogs.
Seng ge rtsal rdzogs chen po’i rgyud: "The Great Tantra The Rampant Lion".
TB Vol. 12/10 (pp. 559-712) 13 chapters.
JV #75, ff.245-416, AD.
NLD 71.7-72.2; 82.4; 83.3-4; 105.6-7; 109.1-2, 122.2-3; 125.2-3; 128.3; 138.7-139.1; 142.3-4; 144.4-6.

Spontaneously Arising Gnosis: Rig pa rang shar.
Rig pa rang shar chen po’i rgyud: "The Great Tantra of Spontaneously Arising Gnosis".
TB Vol. 11/3 (pp. 323-693) 86 chapters.
JV #74, ff. 389-855, AD.
NLD 25.4-26.2; 35.7-36.1; 66.7-67.1; 133.6-7; 134.5-135.1; 136.1; 136.2; 136.5-7; 137.1-3; 138.1-2.
"Natural Rising of Awareness" (DCJ Vol. II 275) (PT).

The Natural Freedom of Gnosis: Rig pa rang grol.
Rig pa rang grol chen po thams cad ’grol ba’i rgyud: "The [[Tantra of Universal] Gnostic Liberation]]".
TB Vol. 11/4 (pp. 699-757) 10 chapters.
JV #72, ff. 1-72, AD.
NLD 66.6-7.
"The Natural Freedom of Awareness" (PT).

The Precious Blazing Relics (The Tantra of): Sku gdung ’bar ba rin po che’i rgyud.
Dpal nam mkha’ med pa’i sku gdung ’bar ba chen po’i rgyud: "The Great Tantra of the Glorious Nonspatial Blazing Relics".
TB Vol.11/6. (pp. 788-815) 3 chapters.
JV #80, ff. 115-151, AD.
NLD: 87.1.

Samantabhadra's Mirror of Mind]]: Kun tu bzang po thugs kyi me long.
Kun tu bzang po thugs kyi me long gi rgyud: "The Tantra of Samantabhadra's Mind Mirror".
TB Vol. 12/4.(pp. 245-280) 4 chapters.
JV #67, ff. 233-280, AD.
NLD: 35.7; 67.4-68.2; 72.6-73.2; 141.3-4.
"Mirror of Enlightened Mind" (PT).

The Six Matrixes: Klong drug pa
Kun tu bzang po klong drug pa’i rgyud: "The Tantra of the Six Matrixes of Samantabhadra".
TB Vol.12/7 ff. (pp. 394-467) 6 chapters.
JV #66, ff. 111-214, AD.
NLD: 52.3-53.1; 58.4-60.1; 74.6; 98.4-5; 99.3; 100.1-2; 105.7; 106.2-3; 121.2-3; 121.7; 122.4-5; 123.3-4; 123.4-124.5; 141.5-6; 149.3.
"Six Expanses" (PT).

The Unwritten Tantra: Yi ge med pa.
Yi ge med pa rgyud chen po: "The Great Unwritten Tantra".
MB: 11/2 (pp. 298-322) 6 chapters.
JV #83, ff. 215-244, AD.
NLD 73.6-74.1; 80.7-81.3; 117.5-7.

Unclassified Tantras from the Nyingma Gyubum

The Epitome of the Definitive Meaning (Tantra of), Nges don ’dus pa’i rgyud.
Rdzogs pa chen po nges don ’dus pa’i rgyud lta ba thams cad kyi snying po rin po che rnam par bkod pa: "The Tantra Epitomizing the Definitive Meaning, the Heart-Essence of All Vision: Jewels in Array".
TB Vol.6/1 (pp. 2-145) 81 chapters.
NLD: 36.1-2.

The Sphere of Total Illumination: Thig le kun gsal.
Thig le kun gsal chen po’i rgyud: "The Great Tantra The Sphere of Total Illumination". Attributed to Garab Dorje.
TB Vol. 13/3 (pp. 296-499), 96 chapters.
NLD: 29.4-6; 33.3; 37.1; 37.1-2; 37.2; 38.7-39.3; 53.6-7; 76.2-4; 78.1-2; 78.4; 91.2-5; 105.3; 110.2-6; 131.7-132.1.
"Tantra of the Great All-illuminating Sphere" (JV); "The All-Illuminating Sphere" (PT).

The Stream of Empowering Self-sprung Perfection (Tantra of): Rdzogs pa rang byung dbang gi chu bo’i rgyud.
Sku thams cad kyi snang ba ston pa dbang rdzogs pa rang byung chen po’i rgyud: "The Great Tantra Self-Sprung Perfect Power Revealing the Vision of All Gnostic Dimensions".
TB Vol. 11/1 (pp. 2-298) 25 chapters.
JV #73, ff. 235-558, AD.
NLD 120.4.

The Supreme Secret: The Mind of All the Tathagatas (Tantra of ): [[De bzhin gshegs pa thams cad kyi thugs gsang ba chen po’i rgyud.
Sang rgyas thams cad kyi thugs gsang ba chen po’i rgyud]]: "The Great Tantra of the Secret Mind of All Buddha".
TB Vol.13/17 (pp. 667-681) 6 chapters.
NLD: 131.3-6.

Texts of Sri Singha

The Great Garuda: Khyung chen. See The Flight of the Great Garuda

The Flight of the Great Garuda: Khyung chen mkha’ lding in the first instance and thereafter Khyung chen.
NTY, Vol. V: Bima snying thig (Part III), 2b (Ta), pp. 52-63
NLD: 47.5-6; 48.1-2; 48.5-7; 53.3-4; 57.1-2; 60.3-5; 61.7; 64.7; 68.5-7; 79.7- 80.1; 80.3-4; 82.6-7; 98.4; 121.1; 121.5; 122.3; 123.2; 145.5.

Spoken Word: The Secret Oral Tradition: Kha gtam gSang ba’i snyan brgyud.
Text unlocated.
NLD: 124.6-125.1.
"Spoken Words: The Secret Oral Lineage" (PT).

The Works of Garab Dorje (unlocated)

Free Identity: Mtshan ma rang grol.
NLD 46.3-47.3; 74.6-75.1; 79.2-3; 111.5-112.2; 112.6-7; 125.6; 127.7-128.1; 149.6-7
"Natural Freedom that Underlies Characteristics" (PT).

The Junction of the Three Dimensions: Sku gsum thug phrad.
NLD: 27.3-5; 34.4-7; 41.1-2; 55.7-56.3; 78.5; 81.5-7; 89.1-2; 6-7; 104.7-105.3; 120.5-6.
"Direct Encounter with the Three Kayas" (PT).

The Sacred Vase of Gnosis: Rig pa spyi blugs.
NLD 37.7-38.6; 54.6-55.1; 57.4-6.

Synchronicity: Dus gsum chig chod.
NLD 77.4-5; 88.6-89.1; 90.3; 101.3-7; 107.3-108.1.
"Cutting Through Time", "Cutting Through the Three Times".

The Transfiguration of the Six Sensory Fields: Tshogs drug zil gnon.
NLD 75.3-4; 86.1; 92.2-3; 103.2-6; 106.7; 151.1-2.
"Overwhelming the Six Modes of Consciousness with Splendor" (PT).

The Vajra Fortress: Rdo rje mkhar rdzong.
NLD: 116.7-117.3.

Mahayoga Tantras

The Magical Web of Manjushri: ’Jam dpal sgyu ’phrul drwa ba.
TK Vol. 14-16. Unlocated.
NLD: 151.7-152.1.
"The Web of Magical Display of Manjushri" (PT).

The Matrix of Mystery: Gsang snying.
Gsang ba’i snying po’i rgyud: Skt. Guhyagarbha Tantra
TK Vol.14, no.187.
TB Vols. 20-1.
NLD 86.2.
See DCJ Vol. II p. 275.
"Heart Essence of Secrets" (PT); "Matrix of Mystery" (HG).

Mayahana Texts

The Great Commentary of The Perfection of Wisdom in Eight Thousand Verses: Brgyad stong ’grel chen of Haribhadra]].
Bstan ’gyur.
NLD: 27.6.

The Treasury of Abhidharma: Chos mngon pa mdzod of Vasubandhu.
Bstan ’gyur.
NLD: 145.3

Miscellaneous Unlocated Sources

A Concise Commentary on the Oral Transmission: Snyan brgyud ti ka.
NLD: 111.3.

Dohakosha of Saraha (Collection of Dohas): Do ha mdzod (Saraha).
Bstan ’gyur
NLD: 26.6-7.

The Right Time: Dus gnad brtag pa of Padmasambhava.
NLD: 137.5-6.
Other Titles: "Examination of the Key Points of Timelessness" (PT).

The Supreme Lamp (Sutra of), Dkon mchog Ta la la’i mdo (see DCJ Vol. II, p. 272).
NLD: 46.1-2.

Bird in the Sky

Internal events are like a bird's flight-path in the sky (64); all internal events are like the imprint of a bird in the sky (64).

Brass for Gold

Taking appearances as one's own mind is like mistaking brass for gold (8).


The body is ephemeral like a bubble (97).


Display is like the incandescence of a candle-flame (8).


Immersed in conditioning like innocent children in the playground (20).

Clouds, Mist

All concepts melt away like a mass of clouds evaporating (40); all events arise and fall like clouds emerging in the sky and then dissolving therein (51); the imagery of samsara and nirvana evaporate like clouds in the sky (89); this display is like clouds billowing in the clear sky (97); every experience reverts into gnosis like clouds dissolving in the sky (110); corporeality dissolves like mist evaporating (122i); the elements dissolve like mist evaporating (122i).


Gnosis diffracts like the crystal (69); gnosis is like the crystal, its brilliance like the fivefold spectrum within the crystal, and its potential for projection like the propensity of the light to emanate out of the crystal (69);
our immaculate nature is like a flawless crystal statue (69);
gnostic awareness, like a crystal prism, contains the fivefold spectrum of natural light (77);
the display of gnostic potency, like the spectrum of light appearing in a crystal (82);
samsara and nirvana evaporate like colored light retracting into the crystal
(89); pristine gnosis laid bare is like a crystal (102); the qualities of gnostic self-expression are like light diffracted in a crystal prism (102).


Samsara and nirvana appear like dreams in the gnostic scope (12);
samsara and nirvana, all gnostic vision, is like dream (94); the miserable states of samsara appear illusory like dream (52);
objective appearances are like a woman in a dream mistakenly identified as a former lover (52);
potency manifests like dreams arising from the potency of sleep (67).

Emperor, the King

The transmission of atiyoga is like Sumeru, the king of mountains (39);
spaciousness governs everything, like an emperor (84); these secret precepts are like an absolute monarch (122i).

Earthen Pot

A conditioned result perishes like an earthen pot (19).


Thoughts are like fish in a pond (50); every flickering thought is like a golden fish darting in a pond (50).


Like blind blundering fools they cling to fleeting illusions that inevitably perish (99).

Golden Isle

The matrix is like the Golden Isle (2, 11).

Great Garuda

Hatching from the egg and flying away is like abandoning the corporeal shell in buddhahood (91); the view of natural perfection is like a great garuda soaring in the empty sky (122ii); the carefree yogin soars like a great garuda (127).

House Collapsing

The dissolution of corporeality is like the coalescence of interior, exterior and intermediary space as a house collapses (90).


We jump through like a lion leaping long and high (90).

Magical Illusion

All experience of the world is like magical illusion (6); appearances are like the eight similes of magical illusion (8).


A fool deceived by magical illusion is like an animal pursuing a mirage (17).

Moon in Water, Reflection

Appearances are like the shimmering reflection in water (36); whatever appears in empty gnosis is like the reflection of the moon in water (48); appearances are like reflections in a pellucid lake (54); samsara and nirvana, all gnostic vision, is like the reflection of the moon in water (94).

Old Man

Relieved like an old man basking in the sun (20); deeply satisfied, like an old man, his work done (55).

Rainbow etc
Ornamentation is like a rainbow, or the sun, moon, stars and planets, in the sky (8); like a rainbow shining in the sky having no existence separate from the sky (69).

River, a Flowing Stream

Natural meditation is like a flowing stream (3); hyper-concentration is
like a river's strong current (23); concentrated absorption is like a great river's flow (23); nondual pure pleasure is uninterrupted like the river Ganges (23); contemplation is like a great river's flow (79).


Spiritual exercises are like children's sand castles (31); the creative phase is a childish game like building sand castles (31).


Pure vision is with us like a shadow following the body (3).


He who applies deliberate effort falls straight to earth like a tenderfoot sky-walker (40).

Space, Elemental Space, the Sky (54 instances)

Reality is like the sky (3, 12, 24, 113, 114, 115); pure mind is like the sky or space (3, 4, 9, 30, 61, 80, 83, 106, 114);

gnosis is just like elemental space or the sky (9, 21, 99);

intrinsic gnosis is pure like the sky (21,115);

gnosis is brilliant emptiness like the sky (35, 90, 95, 98, 99); gnosis is infinitely open, like a crystal-clear sky (55); gnosis is empty like the sky (65),

our fundamental nature is like space (10); the nature of mind is like the sky (11,30,75);

the nature of Samantabhadra is like elemental space (40); atiyoga is like space or the sky (18, 44); nondual perception is open like the sky (46); contemplation is like the sky (91), open-ended like the sky (53), tranquil like the sky (81); total presence is like space (83, 122i);

the natural state is like space (84); equanimity is like the sky (84);

alpha-purity is like the sky (87); unity is timelessly unstructured like the sky (95);

consciousness emerges naturally like the sky (29);

the language of biased projection and morally discriminating goal-directed endeavor is like the nonactive sky (35);

images are like the sky (65); the body-mind uncontrived like the sky (81);

the mind, birthless and deathless like the sky (97);

nonjudgmental mind is like space (115);

the mind and its field are both pure like the sky, baseless and utterly empty (113);

display is nonactive like elemental space (115);

view and meditation is like the sky (115); brilliant emptiness is like the sky (122ii); identity is like the sky (122ii); whoever seeks emptiness fails like a blind bird trying to reach the end of the sky (17).

Sun, Sunlight, Sun-rays

Display is like the display of the sun as light (8); timeless expression, original radiance, shines like the sun's rays (29); the sun of reality obscured like the disc of the sun in summertime (38); gnosis is untouchable like the heart of the sun (39); clear-light dawns in the field of reality like the sun in the sky (40); gnosis arises like the sun (46); like an old man basking in the sun (20); the clear revelation of absence is like the rising sun (40).


Nondual body and mind is like a vajra (97).

Water and Waves

Display is like water and its waves (50); the play of self-sprung awareness is like water and its waves (104); gnosis is saturated by timeless brilliance like water by wetness (48).

Wish-fulfilling Gem

The mind fulfils all our desires like a wish-fulfilling gem (1); awareness with the speed of light is like the master's fountain of jewels (63); pure mind is like a wish-fulfilling gem (66); the spaciousness of reality is a wish-fulfilling gem (66); the spaciousness of reality is a wish-fulfilling gem (102); the inexhaustible treasure he holds in his hand is like a special precious jewel (120); like someone hankering after the wish-fulfilling gem (74).

Appendix III: List of Tibetan Headings in the Auto-commentary

NB: indices refer to page numbers in the NLD

De-nyid-kyi gnas gsal-bar bya-ba


1. Phyag-’tshal-ba (1-2)

2. Brtsam-par dam bca’-ba (3-4)
The Promise to Compose

Bstan-bcos-kyi(s) lus-nyid rgya-cher bshad-pa
The Concise exposition

3. [[Rdo-rje’i chings bzhis lus mdor bstan-pa (5-6)
The Short Exposition of the Four Ineluctable Vajra-Binds

Yan-lag rgyas-par shad-pa
The Extensive Exposition

I. Med-pa


I.1. Med-pa gnad bkrol-ba
The Disclosure of Absence

4. Chos thams-cad dngos-po dang mtshan-ma med-par bstan-pa (7-8)
The Absence of All Concrete Reality

5. De-ltar med-pa’i dpe don nges-pa (9-10)
A Definitive Simile for Absence

6. Rig-ngor snang-ba’i chos-can rang-bzhin med-par bstan-pa (11-12)
Appearances in the Nature of Mind are Inherently Absent

7. ’Di-ltar snang-ba’i chos-rnams lhun-grub rig-pa’i ngang-las g.yos-pa med-par bstan-pa (13-14)
Insubstantial Appearances Never Stir from the Scope of Gnostic Spontaneity

8. Phyi-yul de snang yang don-la sems dang gzhan-du grub-pa med-pa (15-17)
The External World is Neither Mind Nor Anything But Mind

9. Rig-pa-nyid gang-du’ang ma grub-par bstan-pa (18-19)
Gnosis Is Not Any Particular Thing

10. Med-pa’i rang-ngo’i ’dug-tshul (20-21)
The Face of Absence

11. Theg-pa ’og-ma’i chos-las ’das-pas de-dag-gi mtshan-nyid med-par bstan-pa (22-26)
The Progressive Approaches’ Techniques are Superseded by Absence

12. Rig-pa dge-sdig rgyu-’bras-las ’das-par bstan-pa (27-31)
Gnosis Supersedes Moral Conditioning

13. Cha gnyis med-par rtag-tu de-ltar gnas-so zhes bstan-pa (32-35)
"There Is Only Ever Nonduality"

14. Med-pa’i don-la rtogs-pas grol-bar bstan-pa (36-39)
The Realization of Absence is Liberating

15. Med-pa don-gyi snying-po bstan-pa (40-43)
Absence is the Heart of the Matter

16. Med-par rtogs-pa’i dgongs-don bstan-pa (44-46a)
The Point of Realizing Absence

17. Med-par ma rtogs-par ’og-ma’i skyon-du bstan-pa (46b-49a)
The Gradual Approaches Err in Ignoring Absence

18. Med-pa don-gyi rang-bzhin (49b-51)
The Actuality of Absence

19. Byas-pas sangs mi rgya-bar bstan-pa (52-54a)
Buddhahood Is Not Attained by Purposeful Action

20. Med-pa rang-mal-las ma g.yogs-par gdams-pa (54b-58a)
Advice to Abide in the Natural Disposition That is Absence

21. Med-pa gnad-du bkrol-ba’i mjug bsdu-ba (58b-63)
Disclosure of Absence: The Trailer

I.2. Med-pa ’gag-bsdams-pa
The Assimilation of All Experience to Absence

22. Med-pa’i ngang-du rig-pa dal-khod snyoms-pa (64-65)
The Congruence of Absence and Gnosis

23. Rang-bzhin lhun-grub-kyi bsam-gtan bstan-pa (66-67)
The Natural Spontaneity of Concentrated Absorption

24. Rang-bzhin-gyi(s) bsam-gtan rnyed-pas gol-sgrib med-par ’gag-bsdam-pa (68-72)
Unerring Assimilation to Concentrated absorption

25. Rtag-tu chos-sku’i dbyings-la rang-gnas-su bstan-pa (73-78a)
Living Constantly In the Spaciousness of Pure Being

26. Snang sems thug-phrad rjes-med-du ’gag-bsdam-pa (78b-82)
Traceless Assimilation of Dualistic Perception at its Junction

27. Klong-chen rig-pa yangs-pa’i ’gag-tu bsdam-pa dang]] (83-84)
Assimilation to the Immense Gnosis of the Super-Matrix

28. Rgyu-’bras-las ’das-par ’gag-bsdam-pa’o (85-86)
Assimilation to the Locus that Supersedes Causality

I.3. Med-pa chings-su bcings-pa
The Ineluctable Bind of Absence

29. Ye-stong gdod-nas dag-par bcing-ba (87-88)
The Alpha-Pure Bind of Utter Emptiness

30. Rgyu-’bras rtsol-sgrub-las ’das-pa’i chings bstan-pa (89-90)
The Bind of`Absence Supersedes Rational Endeavor

31. Byar-med don-gyi chings-su bstan-pa (91-92)
Nonaction as the Actual Bind

32. Rgyu-’bras bya-rtsol med-par bcings-pa (93-95a)
Bound in Freedom from Goal-oriented Endeavor

33. Byas-pas bslus-par bstan-pa (95b-97)
The Promise of Goal-Directed Activity is Fraudulent

34. Byar-med chos-sku’i dgongs-par bcing-ba (98-100a)
Nonaction is Integral to the Dynamic of Pure Being

35. Don bsdu-ba (100b-102)
The Epitome of the Bind of Absence

I.4. Med-par la-bzla-ba
Resolution in Absence

36. Mthar-’dzin med-par la-bzla-ba (103-106)
Extreme Beliefs are Resolved in Their Intrinsic Absence

37. Mtshan-’dzin snying-rje’i gnas-su la-bzla-bas ’dzin zhen-las ‘das-par bstan-pa (107-110a)
Beyond Grasping: Resolution of Fixation Through Kindness

38. Dge-sdig las-’bras-las ’das-par la-bzla-ba (110b-113a)
Resolution Beyond Moral Conditioning

39. Rgyu-’bras la-bzla-bar gdams-pa (113b-116)
Advice on Resolving Moral Duality

40. Snying-po don-gyi la-bzla-ba (117-120a)
The Essential Resolution

41. Rtog-pa rang-snang dag-pa’i la-bzla-ba (120b-125)
Thought is Resolved in Pure Vision

42. Ming-med stong-pa chen-por la-bzla-ba (126-130)
Resolution in Nameless Super-Emptiness

43. De thams-cad-kyi mjug-bsdu-ba (131-134)

Absence: a Final Synopsis

II. Phyal-ba

II.1. Phyal-ba gnad bkrol-ba
The Disclosure of Openness

44. Mdor bstan-pa (135-137)
Openness Revealed In Brief

45. Phyal-ba’i ngo-bo bstan-pa (138-139)
Everything is Always Open

46. Gzung-’dzin ris-med nam-mkha’-ltar phyal-bar bstan-pa (140-143)
The Sky-like Openness of Undivided Perception

47. Bya-rtsol gnyis-med phyal-bar bstan-pa (144-146)
Goal-oriented Endeavor is Nondual Openness

48. Lhun-grub phyal-ba rang-dag-tu bstan-pa (146b-148)
Naturally Pure Spontaneous Openness

49. Rang-gsal phyal-ba chen-por bstan-pa (149-151)
Intrinsic Clarity As Super-Openness

50. Rang-shar phyal-ba chen-po (152-153)
Spontaneously Arising Integral Openness

51. ;;Zad-pa phyal-ba’i don bstan pa]] (154-158a)
All-consuming Openness

52. Mjug bsdu-ba (158b-160a)
Openness Divulged: the Trailer

II.2. Phyal-bar ’gag-bsdams-pa
Assimilation to Openness

53. Dang-po gzung-’dzin med-pa kun-tu bzang-por phyal-ba’i ’gag-bsdam-pa (160b-163)
First, Openness is Samantabhadra's Nondual Perception

54. Rgya-yan tshogs-drug lhug-par ’gag-bsdam-pa (164-167a)
Assimilating the Unconfined Six Sensory Fields Left Loosely

55. [[Rang-babs phyal-ba chen-por ’gag-bsdams-pa\\ (167b-169a)
Adventitious Sensory Experience is Assimilated to Super-Openness

56. Dgongs-pa gdeng-du gyur-pa’i rtogs-tshad bstan-pa (169b-172)
Realization of Full Confidence in the Natural Dynamic

57. Don bsdu-ba (173-174)
The Epitome of Assimilation to Openness

II.3. Phyal-ba’i chings-su bcing-ba
The Bind of Openness

58. Phyal-ba rdo-rje dbyings-kyi ye-rgyas gdab-pa (175-177)
The Timeless Seal of Vajra-Space Affixed to Openness

59. Byang-chub-sems-kyi spyi-chings bstan-pa (178-179)
The All-Inclusive Bind of Pure mind

60. Phyal-ba rang-gi chings-pa (180-182)
The Inherent Bind of Openness

61. Rig-pa bsam-brjod-dang bral-ba’i chings (183-184)
How Gnosis Is Bound by Ineffable Openness

62. Kun-’byung rig-pa’i chings-su bstan-pa (185-186)
The Bind of Gnosis as the Source

63. Kun-bzang rdo-rje’i chings-kyi don bsdu-ba (187-192a)
The Epitome of Samantabhadra’s Vajra-Bind

II.4. Phyal-ba’i la-bzla-ba
Resolution in Openness

64. Phyi nang yul-med phyal-bar la-bzla-ba (192b-194)
Resolution in Free-form Openness

65. Rig stong rgyu-’bras med-par la-bzla-ba (195-199)
Resolution in Unconditional Empty Gnosis

III. Lhun-gyis grub-pa

III.1. Gnad bkrol-ba
The Disclosure of Spontaneity

66. Lhun-grub nor-bu-ltar bstan-pa (200-201)
The Simile of the Wish-fulfilling Gem

67. Gzhi-snang lhun-grub chen-por bstan-pa (202-204)
The Cosmic Gestalt as Super-Spontaneity

68. Gnyis-med lhun-grub-tu bstan-pa (205-207)
Nonduality as Spontaneity

69. Sku-gsum lhun-grub chen-por bstan-pa (208-211)
The Three Gnostic Dimensions as Super-Spontaneity

70. Thams-cad lhun-grub byang-chub-kyi sems-su bstan-pa (212-216)
All Things Are the Perfect Spontaneity of Pure Mind

71. Thams-cad byang-chub-kyi sems-su bstan-pa (217-218)
Every Experience is Pure mind

72. Lhun-grub kun-gyi mdzod-du bstan-pa (219-224a)
Spontaneity is the Universal Treasury

73. Lhun-grub rtsol-sgrub med-par bstan-pa (224b-227)
Involuntary Spontaneity

74. Byar-med lhun-grub-tu bstan-pa (228-9)
Nonaction Is Spontaneity

75. Ye-nas lhun-grub yin-pas da gzod bsgrub mi dgos-so zhes bstan-pa (230-231)
'Do Not Strive for the Spontaneity That Is Already Here'

76. Lhun-grub re-dogs-las ’das-par sku gsum-gyi snying-por don bsdu-ba (232-236a)
The Spontaneity That Dissolves Hope and Fear as the Essence of the Three Dimensions

III.2. Lhun-grub-tu ’gag-bsdams-pa
The Assimilation to Spontaneity

77. Rang-sems ston-par byung-tshul du ’gag-bsdam-pa (236b-239a)
Assimilating the Phenomena of One’s Own Mind as the Teacher

78. Dbang-shes rtog-sangs stong-par 'gag-bsdam-pa (239b-241a)
Assimilating Sensory Perception as Thought-dissolving Emptiness

79. Rang-bzhin bsam-gtan chen-por 'gag-bsdam-pa (241b-244)
Assimilation in Intrinsic Concentrated Absorption

80. Lhun-grub cog-bzhag chen-por 'gag-bsdam-pa (245-248a)
Assimilation to Spontaneity in Zero-attachment

81. Lhun-grub bya-rtsol-las bral-bar ’gag-bsdam-pa (248b-250)
Effortless Assimilation to Spontaneity

III.3. Chos thams-cad ye-nas lhun-grub chen-por bcings-pa
The Bind of Spontaneity

82. Dang-po thams-cad lhun-grub dag-par bcings-pa (251-253a)
First, All Experience is Bound in Pure Spontaneity

83. Lhun-grub rtsol-sgrub med-pa’i chings-su bstan-pa (253b-256)
The Bind of Involuntary Spontaneity

84. Lhun-grub ’gyur-med-du don bsdu-ba (257-261a)
The Epitome: Changeless Spontaneous Perfection

III.4. Chos thams-cad lhun-grub-tu la-bzla-ba
Resolution of All Experience in Spontaneity

85. Dang-po bsam-’das brjod-du med-pa’i lhun-grub-tu la-bzla-ba (261b-264a)
First, Resolution in Ineffable Spontaneity

86. Lhun-grub don-gyi snying-por la-bzla-ba (264b-266a)
Resolution is the Essence of Spontaneity

87. De’i don rgyas-par bstan-pa (266b-268)
An Elaboration of Resolution in the Essence of Spontaneity

88. ’Byung-ba lhun-grub-tu la-bzla-ba (269-271)
Materiality Resolved in Spontaneity

89. Thim-tshul don-gyi la-bzla-ba (272-275a)
Final Dissolution as Resolution

90. La-bzla gnyis-kyi rang-bzhin bstan-pa (275b-279)
The Nature of Twofold Resolution

91. La-bzla-ba don-gyi man-ngag (280-282)
Resolution: The Actual Precept

92. Don bsdu-ba (283-284)
The Epitome of Spontaneity

IV. Chos thams-cad rang-byung-gi ye-shes gcig-pur bstan-pa
All Experience is Self-sprung Awareness Alone

IV.1. Gnad bkrol-ba
The Disclosure of the Unity of Self-sprung Awareness

93. Dang po chos thams-cad rtsa-ba gcig-par bstan-pa (285-289)
First, The One Ground of all Experience

94. Thams-cad dbyings gcig rang-byung-gi ye-shes-su bstan-pa (290-293)
Unitary Spaciousness is Self-sprung Awareness

95. Dag mnyam rang-byung-gi ye-shes-su bstan-pa (294-297)
Pure Sameness as Self-sprung Awareness

96. Rig-pa bzhugs-gnas klong-chen-du bstan-pa (298-300a)
The Seat of Gnosis is the Super-Matrix

97. De-nyid ’khor-’das sku-gsum ’byung-ba’i dbyings-su bstan-pa (300b-301a)
Gnosis Yields the Three Gnostic Dimensions of Samsara and Nirvana

98. Rtsa-ba gcig-tu bstan-pa (301b-303)
The One Root

99. Rig-pa gcig-pu chos-kyi dbyings-su bstan-pa (304-306a)
Gnosis Alone is the Spaciousness of Reality

100. Rig-ngo bsam-brjod-las ’das-par bstan-pa (306b-308a)
The Original Nature of Mind is Ineffable

101. Rig-pa gcig-la kun snang yang gcig-las ma g.yos-par bstan-pa (308b-310a)
Plurality in Unitary Gnosis

102. Rig-pa gcig-tu mjug bsdu-ba (310b-314a)
The Singularity of Gnosis: The Trailer

IV.2. Chos thams-cad rang-byung ye-shes gcig-tu ’gag-bsdams-pa
Assimilation of All Experience to the Singularity of Self-sprung Awareness

103. Snang-shes-nyid rang-byung-gi ye-shes-su ’gag-bsdam-pa (314b-316a)
Assimilating Cognition to Self-sprung Awareness

104. Shar grol rang-byung-gi ye-shes-su ’gag-bsdam-pa (316b-317)
Assimilating Release at Inception to Self-sprung Awareness

105. Gnas ’gyu gnyis-med-du ’gag-bsdam-pa (318-319a)
Assimilating the Nonduality of Stillness and Movement

106. De-dag-gi don bsdu-ba (319b-323a)
The Integration of Those Three Functions

107. Grol-ba gcig-tu don bsdu-ba (323b-326a)
Unitary Liberation—The Epitome

IV.3. Gcig-pu chings-su bcing-ba
The Bind of Unity

108. Dbyings gcig rang-byung ye-shes-su bcing-ba (326b-328a)
Unitary Spaciousness Is Bound in Self-sprung Awareness

109. Ji-ltar snang yang rig-par bcings-pa (328b-329)
Appearances, Just as They Are, Are Bound in Gnosis

110. Mthar yang rig-pa gcig-tu bcing-ba (330-331)
Finally, the Bind of the One Gnosis

111. Thams-cad rang-byung ye-shes-su bcings-pas don bsdu-ba (331b-333a)
Everything is Bound in Self-sprung Awareness: The Epitome

IV.4. Thams-cad rang-byung-gi ye-shes-su la-bzla-ba
The Resolution of All Experience in Self-Sprung Awareness

112. Thog mtha’ med-pa don-gyi snying-por la-bzla-ba (333b-335a)
Resolution in the Heart-Essence Without Beginning or End

113. Gzung-’dzin yul-med rang-byung-gi ye-shes-su la-bzla-ba (335b-336)
Resolution in the Imageless Perception of Self-sprung Awareness

114. Rig-pa mtshon-brjod-las ’das-par la-bzla-ba (337-340a)
Resolution in Ineffable Gnosis

115. Chos zad ming-med chen-por la-bzla-ba-nas don bsdu-ba (340b-344a)
Resolution in the Great Nameless Consummation: The Epitome

V. ’Dzin-pa’i gang-zag-gi gnas-la gdams-pa
Advice to Recipients of the Transmission

116. Spyir spang-bar bya-ba’i snod (345-346)
Candidates Generally To Be Rejected

117. Bye-brag-tu spang-bar bya-ba’i snod (347-8)
Particularly Unsuitable Recipients

118. Blang-bya’i snod bstan-pa (349-351)
Acceptable Recipients

119. Slob-ma ji-ltar bya-ba (352-353)
The Conduct of the Student

120. Gang-gis gdams-pa’i bla-ma’i mtshan-nyid bstan-pa (354a)
The Qualities of the Teacher

121. Ji-ltar gdams-pa’i tshul (355b-356)
The Method of Instruction

122. Gang gdams-pa’i snying-po bstan-pa (356)
The Essential Instruction

123. Gtad-pa des ji-ltar bsgrub-pa’i tshul bstan-pa (357-359)
Obligations of the Recipients

Bstan-bcos yongs-su rdzogs-pa mjug-gi bya-ba
The Conclusion of the Treatise

124. Khams gsum yongs-grol chen-por bsngo-ba (360-361)
Dedication to the Great Liberation of the Triple World

125. Bstan-pa dar-rgyas-su bsngo-ba (362-363)
Dedication to the Spread of the Great Perfection

126. Gang-gis ji-ltar brtsams-pa’i tshul brjod-pa (364-365)
The Author and Structure of the Composition

127. Phyi-rabs skal-bzang dga’-ba bskyed-pa (366-367)
Inspiring Joy in the Lucky Ones of the Future


A Dzogchen Glossary_

ka dag: alpha~ original~ primordial~ purity; alpha-pure
ka dag chen po: original hyper-purity
Kun byed rgyal po: the supreme source
kun dpe: the universal simile
kun ’byung: the source, the ubiquitous source
kun ’byung nor bu: wish-fulfilling gem
kun gzhi: experiential~ gnostic~ existential~ ground
[kye ma]]: beware
klong: matrix; expanse
klong chen: super-matrix, vast matrix
klong rdol: bursting forth; efflorescence
dkyil yangs po: boundless center
[sku]]: existential~ dimension, mode, body; =chos sku
sku dang ye shes: pure being and pristine awareness
sku gsum: the three (gnostic) ~dimensions ~modes ~buddha-bodies
skye ’gag gi chos: temporal experience
skye med: unborn, unoriginated, unbegun

kho thag gcod pa: to reach conviction, to finally surrender
khyab gdal: all- ~pervading ~encompassing ~embracing; stretching out
khyab dal chen po: integral openness
’khod snyoms: congruent
’khor ’das chos nams: all experience of samsara and nirvana
khyil ba: converge, entwine, integrated
’khrul ’khor: vicious circle
’khrul snang: delusive appearances
’khrol du ’jug pa: to give room

gol sgrib: glitches and veils; deviation
gol sgrib med: infallible, flawless
gol sa: place of going astray, deviation
grub bsal med: unproven and irrefutable
grol ba: release, freedom, liberation
grwa zur med: zero-dimensional, without edges or corners
dgag tu med: incessant
dgag sgrub med: without assertion or denial
dge sdig: (conventional) morality, moral duality (virtue and vice), moral conditioning
dge sdig med: in the absence of moral conditioning
dge sdig rgyu ’bras: moral ~causality ~causation ~conditioning
dgongs don: dynamic, purpose
dgongs pa: gnostic dynamic, buddha-dynamic, dynamic; contemplation
’gag: crux, focus, locus, nub, key
’gag bsdam pa: assimilation, integration
’gag med: unimpeded, unobstructed
’gyur ’jug: accessing, to access
’gro drug: six types of beings
’gro ’ong med pa: without moving, neither coming nor going, without variation
rgya grol: unrestricted
rgya chad phyogs lhung med: unrestricted and impartial; indefinite openness
rgya ma chad: unrestricted, impartial, unlimited
rgya yan: unconfined, unrestricted, uninhibited, unbounded freedom, unbound
rgyan: ornamentation, beauty
rgyas chod: confirmed
rgyu ’bras: causality, contingency, conditioning, cause and effect
rgyu ’bras dge sdig ’bad rtsol: striving for a positive result
rgyu ’bras med: non-contingent, unconditional, without cause and effect
rgyu ’bras rtsol sgrub ’das: unattainable
rgyu ‘bras bya rtsol: rational endeavor, goal-orientation
rgyun chad med: uninterrupted
sgom med: nonmeditation
sgyu ma: magical illusion
sgrims lhod med: not too tight nor too slack
sgra thal ’gyur: beyond the sound
sgro skur: imputation; value judgement (assertion and denial), evaluation
gleng gzhi: discourse, history, association

ngang: space, scope
ngang gis: inhere, is inherent, naturally, intrinsically
nges pa: unequivocal, definite, certain
nges don: definitive meaning
nges med: equivocal, ambiguous, indeterminate
ngo bo: essence, face, nature
dngos po: substance, solidity, concrete identity
dngos med: insubstantial, without concrete identity, lacking any substance, 'nothing is solid', immaterial
snga phyi thog mtha’ bral: atemporal

cir (gang du) yang ma grub: nowhere attested
cer mthong: direct~ naked~ perception; 'seeing'
cog bzhag: freely resting, carefree ~relaxation ~detachment
cog bzhag chen po: zero-attachment
gcig pu: alone, unitary, the singularity, unity
gcer bu: naked
bcos med: without artifice, cannot be ~contrived ~improved

cha med: undivided
cha shas spros dang bral: free of ~fragmented structure ~differentiating constructs
chags sdang: emotion
chig chod: immediate, instantaneous
chings su bcing ba: 'the bind'
chub: perfected, comprehended, completed
cho ’phrul: magical emanation
chos: experience, phenomena, events, life, all and everything
chos sku: dharmakaya, pure being
chos dang chos min med: neither sacred nor profane, neither something nor nothing
chos nyid: reality
chos nyid zad pa: experience consummate
chos dbyings: spaciousness, hyperspace
chos med: unreal, nothing
chos zad: phenomena~ experience~ events~ ~consumed ~spent ~consummate
’char: arise, emerge, emanate, issue
’char tshul: mode, inception, emanation

ji ltar snang yang: whatever appears, no matter how they seem
ji bzhin: just as it is; simplicity
ji bzhin pa: what is already there
’jur sems: anal retention
rjen pa: bare, naked
[[brjod med]: unutterable, inexpressible

nyag gcig: the sole, holistic
gnyis med: nondual
mnyam pa: equality, sameness; the same, identical, uniform, consonant with
mnyam pa chen po: super~ hyper~ -sameness; 'great equanimity'
mnyam pa nyid: sameness, equality, equanimity
mnyam bzhag: equanimity, meditative equipoise, settled in sameness
snying po: essence, nature, heart, core

ting nge ’dzin: natural~ samadhi
gtan la ’babs/dbab pa: to establish conclusively
gtad: focus, target, objective
btang bzhag med: simply being, without~ acceptance or rejection~ biased action; nothing to reject/discard or embrace/adopt
rtag chad med: neither eternal nor ~temporal ~ephemeral, free of eternalism and nihilism
rtog pa: to conceive; thought, thinking; construct, concept
rtog tshogs: mental ~constructs ~conceptions
rtogs pa: realizing, realization, understanding, intuition
lta ba: view, vision
lta ba sgom pa spyod pa ’bras bu: view, meditation, action, goal/fruition
stong pa: empty
stong pa chen (po): super~ vast~ emptiness
stong pa nyid: emptiness
stong gsal: brilliant emptiness, empty clarity, empty light

thag gcod pa: utter~ conviction
thig le: seed, nucleus; holistic seed, seminal nucleus; sphere; light-seed
thig le nyag gcig: the one~ sole~ holistic seed
thug phrad: junction, juncture (intersection)
thugs: buddha-mind
thugs rje: compassion
theg sman, theg ’og ma: lower approaches; gradualist~ gradual~ progressive~ approaches
thog mtha’ med: beginningless and endless
thog ma’i gzhi: original~ primordial~ existential ground
mtha’ dbus: extension
mtha’ dbus med: zero-dimensional, without center or boundary
mtha’ bzhi,: four extreme beliefs; rigid attitudes/beliefs

dangs gsal ba: pellucid clarity
dam tshig: samaya, commitment
dal khod snyoms: congruent (homogenous) integration
dus gsum: past, present and future, three times, time
dus gsum chig chod: synchronicity
dus gsum sangs rgyas: buddha past present and future (Samantabhadra)
de kho na nyid: immediate reality, the timeless specificity of reality
de nyid: itself, reality, the nature of mind
de bzhin nyid: the zing of reality, tathata, suchness, reality just as it is, authentic reality
de bzhin gshegs pa’i snying po: pure mind essence
don: meaning, reality
ppdon gyi[[: actually
don gyi snying po: essential reality, heart-essence, actual essence, core/heart of reality
don gyi rang bzhin: actual function
dran pa: memory, thought, reflection, recollection
dran bsam: ideation
gdangs ba: luminous; luminosity, expression
gdangs gsal ba: crystal clarity
gdams pa: advice, instruction
gdal ba chen po: all- ~pervasive ~embracing ~suffusing
gdod nas dag pa: primordially pure, pure from the beginning, alpha-pure
gdod nas sangs rgyas: primordial buddhahood, primordial awakening
gdod ma’i klong: primordial matrix
gdod ma’i sa: original seat
bdag nyid: identity
bdag tu ’dzin pa: concretization
bde sdug: feeling (happiness and sadness, pleasure and pain); samsara
bde ba chen po: pure pleasure, supreme bliss,
bden med: unreal
’das: superseding, transcending, gone beyond, dissolving
’du bral med pa: inseparable union; 'neither united nor separated', beyond union and separation, never lost nor gained, without anticipation, ineluctable
’du shes: idea, apperception
’dus ma byas: non-composite, unconditioned uncompounded
’dod byung nor bu: wish-fulfilling jewel
rdo rje: vajra, immutable, indestructible, ineluctable, adamantine
[rdo rje’i ’gros]]: vajra dance ~[[vajra mode[[ ~vajra stance
rdo rje dbyings: vajra-space, the vajra-field
rdo rje snying po’i dbyings: spaciousness of the ~vajra-heart ~vajra-essence

nub pa med pa’i rgyal mtshan: the forever-unfurled (eternal) victory banner
[gnad]]: focus, focal point, key, main thing
gnad bkrol ba: disclosure (of the focal point)
gnas ’gyu: stillness and movement
gnas pa: abiding, being, resting, remaining, existing
gnas pa med: unlocatable, homeless
gnas lugs: the natural state, way of being; natural perfection
rnam rtog: discursive~ thought
rnam dag: immaculate
rnal gzhag chen po: super-relaxation, great natural relief, satisfaction
rnal ’byor pa: gnostic yogin and yogini, authentic yoga
rnal ma'i: fundamental
snang ba: appearance, image, light-form, manifestation, vision
snang ba’i dus nas: 'the timeless moment', in its moment of appearance, at the moment of emanation, right from the start
snang shes nyid: cognition
snang tshul: appearance
snang yul: things arising
snang sems: integral vision
snang srid: the world and its inhabitants, environment and life-forms, animate and inanimate
snod bcud: matter and energy, worlds and life-forms, chalice and elixir

spang blang bral: no preference
spang blang ’khor ’das med: no preference for samsara or nirvana
spangs thob med: beyond rejection and attainment
spong len: discrimination, discipline
spongs thob med: ineluctable; discipline
spyod pa: conduct, behavior, practice
spyod yul: field of action
sprul sku: nirmanakaya, the dimension of magic
spro bsdu med: neither diffused nor concentrated
spros: multiplicity, structuring, elaboration
spros bral: unstructured, unelaborated; simplicity

phyam gcig: common unity
phyam gdal: equilibrium, equalized, spaced-out
phyam phyal: untrammeled openness
phyal ba: openness
phyal ba chen po: infinite openness
phyal yas: infinitely open, open to infinity
phyi nang: outside and inside, inner and outer
phyogs ’byams: all-suffusing
phyogs med: undirected, nonspatial, unbiased, spatially indeterminate
phyogs ris med: unbiased and impartial, the absence of spatial and temporal distinction, unpatterned, free of all restriction, unrestricted, undivided and unbiased, unrestricted spacetime
phyogs bral: undifferentiated
phyogs su ’dzin: taking sides
phyogs su mi blta: total perspective, free of any bias
phyogs su lhung med: impartial, unreified
phra rags: gross~ coarse~ and subtle
’phel ‘grib med: neither increasing nor decreasing
’pho ’gyur: in flux
’pho ’gyur med: without transformation, without transition or change; immutable
phrin las: ideal conduct, buddha-activity, ritual activity
’phro: project
’phro gnas: proliferating or quiescent
’phro ‘du: oscillation
’phro gzhi: projective base

bag yangs: fully receptive
bar med: seamless
bya byed: deliberate action
bya bral: nonaction; nonactive, inactive; free-form
bya rtsol: goal-oriented endeavor, deliberate effort, striving, endeavor
byang chub: total presence, total pure presence
byang chub sems: (bodhichitta) pure mind
byang chub snying po: the essential heart of total presence
byar med: nonaction; nonactive, nonreactive, 'with nothing to do'
byas pa: purposeful action, goal-directed action
bying rgod: lethargy and agitation, laziness and excitement, volatility
byin brlabs: hallowed
byung tshor med pa: without affectivity
blang dor: discrimination, principled action
blang dor bya rtsol: directed~ discriminating~ activity
blang dor ’bad rtsol: discipline, struggle for principled action
blang dor med pa: nondiscrimination, without cultivating or rejecting anything, nondiscriminatory
blo: intellect, individual~ ordinary~ mind
blo ’das: intellect ~exhausted ~redundant; no-mind!
blo bral: mindless
blo rab: brilliant; brightest~ broadest~ keenest~ mind
dbye ba med: indivisible
dbye bsal med: all-inclusive, undiscriminating all-inclusive and indivisible
dbyings: spaciousness, field (of reality), hyperspace
’bad rtsol: effort, struggle, activity
’byung ‘jug: alternation, strobe-like
’byung ‘jug blo: fluctuating mind
’byung tshul: the manner~ mode~ of emanation, emanation
’bras bu: goal (negative), fruition (positive)
sbubs: cavity, hollow, sanctum

ma skyes: unoriginated, unmanifest
ma grub: unattested, indefinable, unproven, cannot be established
ma ’gags: uncrystallizing, inalienable, unreified; unimpeded
ma ’gags rol pa: uncrystallizing display,
ma bsgoms: unaided (concentration), uncultivated
ma nges: uncertain, ambiguous, indeterminate, equivocal
ma bcos: uncontrived, unfabricated, artless
ma byas: unmade, uncreated
ma btsal: unsought, pre-existing
ma rtsol: unattainable
ma yengs: undistracted
ma g.yos: never shifting (from), unstirring
man ngag: secret precept
mi ’gyur: unchanging
mi rtog: unthought, unthinking, nonconceptual
mi gnas: nowhere located, unlocated, unfixed, unlocalized
mi snang: unmanifest, invisible, intangible
mi phyed: indivisible
mi dmigs: unimaged
mi mtshon: unsigned, unindicated
mi g.yo: unmoving
ming tsam: mere label
med pa: absence, nonexistence
med pa gsal snang: brilliant/vivid appearance; image of absence
[[med pa’i chos] rnams]]: empty phenomena
[dmigs pa]]: imaged
dmigs gtad: an objective, point of reference, focus
dmigs gtad med: nothing to hold on to, untargeted, without ~objective ~ reference ~focus
dmigs med: invisible, unimaginable
dmigs bsam bral ba: indeterminacy
smra bsam brjod ’das: inconceivable and unutterable

btsal bsgrubs: deliberate effort
btsal ba med: not to be found, not to be sought, unwanted, involuntary
rtsal: potency; creativity
rtsa: basis, foundation, source, root
rtsal rdzogs: potentiated; rampant
rtsol ba: effort, striving, diligence, exertion
rtsol sgrub: goal-oriented ~endeavor; spiritual ambition
rtsol sgrub med: without endeavor, effortless, involuntary
rtsol med: the absence of striving

tshogs drug: six sensory fields
mtshan nyid: quality, attribute, character, identity
mtshan ma: characteristic, attribute
mtshan ma’i ris dang bral: free of all specifics
mtshan ’dzin: fixation
mtshan brjod ’das: beyond expression, inexpressible, ineffable
mtshon dang mi mtshon med: neither signed nor unsigned
mtshon du med: cannot be indicated
mtshon pa’i yul las ’das: beyond the specific

rdzogs: perfection; completion, wholeness
rdzogs chen: natural perfection, the Great Perfection as a school, title etc
dzin pa: grasping, belief

zhi ba: quelled, assuaged, extinguished
gzhi: ground (of being), existential ground, base, basis, basic, fundament
gzhi bral: with no solid ground
gzhi snang: gestalt ~imagery ~emanation; archetypal imagery
gzhi dbyings: the spaciousness of the ground; the field as the ground

zang ka ma: pristine, authentic, genuine
zang thal: holistic transparence; transparent; all-embracing; unimpeded; immediate, synchronicitous
zang thal hen po: super-transparence; transparent, translucent
zad: consumed, consummate, spent, exhausted,
zad pa’i chos nyid: all-consuming reality
zil gyis gnon: outshine, overwhelm, transfigure, over-awe
gza’ gtad: focus, objective, target
gzugs brnyan: reflections
gzung ’dzin: dualistic perception (knower and known, subject and object)
gzung ’dzin med: nondual perception, the absence of dualistic perception
gzeb: trap
bzang ngan: good and bad, preference, judgement, discrimination
bzang ngan dge sdig ’das: beyond moral distinction
bzang ngan spang blang rgyu ’bras bya rtsol: morally discriminating causal reaction
bzang ngan med: undiscriminating, nondiscriminatory
bzang ngan spong len: value judgement

od gsal: clear light

yangs pa: vast; expanse
yid la byed pa: attention
yin lugs: manner of existence
yul: object, (objective) field
yul can: 'the knower' /experiencing subject
yul snang: objective field, field of appearances, imaged field
yul dbang: sensory field
yul med: nonreferential, unimaged
yul sems: mind and its field, mind in its field
yul sems snang ba: dualistic appearance
yul semsdzin pa: dualistic grasping
ye: ultimate
ye grol: ultimate~ release
ye stong: ultimate~ utter~ emptiness
ye dag: primal purity
ye nas: timeless, primordial; pre-existent, ultimate
ye nas yin pa’i gnas lugs: the timeless state of natural gnosis
ye nas lhun grub: original spontaneity, spontaneously present from the beginning
ye gnas: has always existed
ye bzhin: timeless
ye shes: pristine~ timeless~ primal~ ever-fresh~ awareness
ye sangs: awakened
yeng dang ma yengs med: admitting no degree of focus
g.yo med: never leave, depart, waver from, stir (from)

rang grol: reflexive release
rang ngo: original face, face, nature of mind
rang ngo’i dgongs pa: natural dynamic
rang dag: naturally~ intrinsically~( pure = empty)
rang dangs: self-clarified, naturally unsullied, bright, pellucid, transparent
rang gdangs: self-expression, intrinsic luminosity, luminous self-expression
rang gnas: naturally abiding, indwelling, intrinsic, self-existing
rang snang: gnostic envisionment, auto-envisionment, gestalt imagery, display; self-imaged, self-manifest
rang babs: naturally ~falling ~occurring; adventitious; natural flow
rang byung: self-sprung, self-occurring; spontaneous, natural
rang byung ye shes: self-sprung (pristine) awareness
rang mal: natural disposition, the natural~ original~ state, natural condition
rang gzhag/bzhag: relaxation, natural ease
rang bzhin: nature
rang bzhin bcu: ten techniques; rubric or categories of tantric method
rang bzhin med: insubstantial, absent in reality; inherently absent, evanescent
rang bzhin rdzogs pa chen po: natural perfection, intrinsic natural perfection
rang bzhin gsal ba: brilliant nature, intrinsic clarity, brilliant
rang bzhin bsam gtan: natural~ intrinsic~ concentration
rang yal: (self-) dissolve, melt
rang rig: intrinsic gnosis
rang rig ye shes: intrinsic gnostic awareness
rang shar: naturally-arising, self-arising, spontaneously arising, occurring autonomously
rang sa ’dzin/zin: relax into the natural state, remains in its natural state
rang sar: as it stands, in the natural state
rang sangs: naturally pure, naturally pristine; self-actuating purification, self-dissolution
rang sems: the (ordinary) mind
rang gsal: intrinsic luminosity, natural clarity
rab ’byams: all-suffusing, all embracing
rig ngo: the face of gnosis, the original face, the nature of mind
rig stong: empty gnosis
rig pa: gnosis
rig pa zang ka: authentic gnosis
ris med: indivisible, undivided, indistinguishable
rig ’dzin: mystic, gnostic master
ro gcig: (the) one taste
rol pa: display, play

la bzla ba: resolution; to resolve
lam: path, process
lung: transmission
[[lus ngag] sems]]: physical, energetic and mental complexes
longs spyod sku: sambhogakaya, the dimension of perfect enjoyment

shar: arise, dawn, happen, start
shar grol: inception and release, release at inception
shar ba: inception; emitting
shar lugs: emanation
shar sa: field of origin, incipient state
shig ge: floating
shes rab: insight (into emptiness)
gshis don: basic meaning

sa bor: disdaining
sangs: awaken, purify, dissolve, clear away
sangs rgyas: buddha, gnostic master
sang rgyas pa: buddhahood
sems nyid: the nature of mind, mind itself
sems nyid byang chub: the pure nature of mind
sems snang: mental image
gsang chen: profound mystery
gsal: shine, radiate
gsal ba: brilliance, clarity, radiance
bsam brjod med: inconceivable and inexpressible, ineffable
bsam gtan: concentrated absorption
bsam dang bral: inconceivable, unthinkable, without plan, without ideation
bsam yul ’das: inconceivable, transcending thought and intention

har sang: awe, fully alert
har sang rgya yan: sudden wakefulness
lhag mthong: heightened insight
lhug pa: left loosely, relaxed; free and easy relaxation, relaxation; relaxed detachment
lhun grub: spontaneity; spontaneous perfection; spontaneously ~accomplished ~arising
lhun grub chen po: super-spontaneity, spontaneous creativity, spontaneous gnosis
lhun mnyam: immanent sameness
lhun ’byams: interfused
lhod pa: loose and easy, relaxed, carefree, slack

’ub chub: consummate fulfilment
’e ma ho: ho!
’ong ’gro: kinetic, variation