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The Jewel Ornament of Liberation by Gampopa

Given Chamgon Kenting Tai Situpa (Teaching in Tibetan with English and Chinese translations)

Lord Gampopa

When Buddha Shakyamuni transmitted the teachings on the ultimate nature of mind in the Samadhiraja Sutra, he asked his assembled disciples which of them would vow to take rebirth in the future to serve as guardian of this precious wisdom. The bodhisattva Dawu Shunnu vowed to do so, and many years later took rebirth as the Lord Gampopa-who obtained full transmission from Milarepa and spread the teachings on Mahamudra, the essence of mind, throughout Tibet.

Gampopa(1079-1153, also called Dakpo Lhaje, meaning the doctor from Dakpo)was born in Nyal, in eastern Tibet. His father, a doctor, trained him to be a skillful doctor and to release suffering of many people. Yet during a severe epidemic he was unable to save his own beloved wife and children. Renouncing worldly life, he took the vows of a monk and devoted himself to studying the stages of the path as taught in the sutras, and cultivated the aspiration to benefit all beings impartially. Various signs presaging liberation arose in his dreams, and he would remain absorbed in an unwavering state of meditation for many days.

One day, Gampopa overheard three beggars discussing the miraculous qualities of Milarepa. When he heard the great yogi's name, Gampopa was overcome with devotion and fainted. When he awoke, he set out to find the great master, who at the time was staying in an isolated mountain retreat. Gampopa traveled like a man possessed, sometimes fainting from exhaustion and weakness. Finally, he reached the feet of Milarepa, who accepted him as a disciple.

Milarepa bestowed on him the essential instructions of the Kagyu lineage, including the Six Yogas of Naropa. He then sent Gampopa to meditate in a desolate cave, where various experiences of the path swiftly arose. On one occasion, he perceived his cave to be filled with deities. On another, he saw his body as a net of veins and bones, devoid of flesh. On yet another, the valley in which he sat practicing became filled with smoke, and he was forced to grope his way back into Milarepa's presence. Each time, Milarepa taught him not to cling to what appeared, saying "It's neither good nor bad. Keep practicing." Due to the high level of realization he had achieved in former lives and to his reliance on Milarepa, Gampopa progressed rapidly. At last, Milarepa transmitted to him all the precious teachings and empowerments, then sent him to central Tibet to develop his practice.

After meditating in hermitages and wild mountains for many years, Gampopa achieved enlightenment and clearly saw his teacher was Dorje Chang. As Milarepa had prophesied, local deities invited Gampopa to establish a monastery at Dagpo, where vast numbers of disciples gathered to receive the Kagyu teachings he expounded. During this period, Gampopa frequently displayed supernormal powers, often manifesting as Buddha Shakyamuni or the bodhisattva Chenrezig. Many people reported seeing him simultaneously presiding over a feast at one place, performing a consecration in another, and teaching in yet another. When at last he entered the realm of ultimate reality, the sky was filled with countless rainbows, images of white stupas, and a rain of flowers to mark the passage of a fully enlightened being.

About The Jewel Ornament of Liberation

Lord Gampopa once said, "For anyone who wishes to see me, studying The Jewel Ornament of Liberation is the same as meeting me."

Dharma Lord Gampopa is a tenth bhumi bodhisattva and incorporated the essence of Santiraksita sutra、《佛密續論》、Lankāvatāra-sūtra... in The Jewel Ornament of Liberation, which is presented in an easy to understand and accessible.

The Jewel Ornament of Liberation is an important text of the Kagyu lineage. The text has a total of 21 chapters:

  1. Chapter 1: The motive (Buddha-Nature)
  2. Chapter 2: The working basis (The Precious Human Life)
  3. Chapter 3: Meeting spiritual friends (The Spiritual Master)
  4. Chapter 4: The instruction in the transitoriness of the composite
  5. Chapter 5: The vicious state of samsara
  6. Chapter 6: Karma and its result
  7. Chapter 7: Benevolence and compassion
  8. Chapter 8: Taking refuge (Refuge and Precepts
  9. Chapter 9: Cultivation of Bodhichitta
  10. Chapter 10: The training in an enlightened attitude
  11. Chapter 11: The six perfections
  12. Chapter 12: The Perfection of Generosity
  13. Chapter 13: The Perfection of Moral Ethics
  14. Chapter 14: The perfection of patience
  15. Chapter 15: The Perfection of Perseverance
  16. Chapter 16: The perfection of meditative concentration
  17. Chapter 17: The perfection of awareness( The Perfection of Wisdom Awareness )
  18. Chapter 18: The five paths
  19. Chapter 19: The spiritual levels
  20. Chapter 20: Perfect Buddhahood
  21. Chapter 21: Buddha Activity

The text is divided into six parts:

  1. The cause is the buddha nature
  2. The working basis is the most precious human body
  3. The contributory cause is the spiritual friend
  4. The method consists of the instructions
  5. The result consists of the kayas of perfect buddhahood
  6. The activity is the spontaneous accomplishment of beings' benefit

Teaching Schedule

Month 2013 2014 2015
Jan   18, 19 17, 18 Both cancelled
Feb 23, 24 15, 16 Both cancelled 14, 15 Both cancelled
Mar 9, 10 15, 16 Both cancelled 21, 22 Both cancelled
Apr 20, 21 19, 20 Both cancelled 18, 19
May 25, 26 17, 18 16, 17
Jun 15, 16 14, 15 20, 21
Jul 20, 21 19, 20 11, 12
Aug 17, 18 16, 17 15, 16
Sep 21, 22 20, 21 19, 20
Oct 19, 20 18, 19 17, 18 Both cancelled
Nov 16, 17 22, 23 Changed to 14, 15
Dec 14, 15 20, 21 Both cancelled 19, 20 Both cancelled

Month 2016
Mar 19, 20 Both cancelled
Apr 16, 17 Both cancelled
May 21, 22 Both cancelled
Jun 18, 19 Both cancelled
Jul 16, 17
Aug 20, 21 Both cancelled
Sep 17, 18 Both cancelled
Oct 15, 16 Both cancelled
Nov 12, 13 Both cancelled
Dec 17, 18 Both cancelled

All the above dates are Saturdays and Sundays. Teaching time is AM: 7:30 - 10:00 (+UTC 5.5)

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