NEW TRANSLATION: ‘Supplication to the Garland of Karmapas’ by Jamyang Khyentse Chokyi Lodro

As an offering for Guru Rinpoche day, and the recent 35th birthday of HH 17th Karmapa and 61st paranirvana of Jamyang Khyentse Chokyi Lodro, here is a new translation of Supplication to the Garland of Karmapas (dpal ldan karma pa’i skyes rabs phreng ba’i gsol ‘debs). It is not only an historical and poetic piece of writing about the Karmapas, but unique in that it was composed by the 20th century master, 2nd incarnation of the Jamyang Khyentse lineage, Chokyi Lodro (‘jam dbyangs chos kyi blo gros). The Jamyang Khyentse lineage had a close connection with the Karmapas, as I have written about here.

The text, which is in the Collected Works of Chokyi Lodro[1] includes a verse of praise to each Karmapa from the 1st up until the 15th, although oddly the 13th Karmapa, Dudul Dorje is missing from the text.  There is no praise to the 16th Karmapa, Rigpe Dorje, in the text either although, Chokyi Lodro wrote a separate one for him that can be found in his collected works.

In this translation, I have also included the Tibetan and phonetics, for those who wish to recite it in the original language. Also, links to the biographies of each Karmapa are included in the verses. Chokyi Lodro also wrote supplications for the 3rd and 15th Karmapas, these will be published shortly.

The cover image on this booklet is from an 18th century Thangka of the 8th Karmapa, Mikyo Dorje, with previous Karmapas above him. For more details about it, see https://www.himalayanart.org/items/59367.

I dedicate the merit to all beings and in particular, offer it with respect and devotion to my root lama and heart, 17th Karmapa, Orgyen Trinley Dorje.  May the Karmapas lineage and teachings prosper and flourish and may harmony, peace and truth prevail!

Adele Tomlin, 30 June 2020.

[1] In the Collected Works of Jamyang Chokyi Lodro (“dpal ldan karma pa’i skyes rabs phreng ba’i gsol ‘debs/.” In gsung ‘bum/_’jam dbyangs chos kyi blo gros/. TBRC W1KG12986. 3: 265 – 267. bir, h.p.: khyentse labrang, 2012.

 SUPPLICATION TO THE GARLAND OF KARMAPAS

This text can also be downloaded here as a complete pdf.

  1. Karmapa, Dusum Khyenpa (1110-1193)

རྒྱལ་བ་ཀུན་གྱི་ཕྲིན་ལས་སྤེལ༎                                             རིགས་གསུམ་གཅིག་བསྡུས་ཀརྨ་པ༎་

gyelwa kün gyi trin lé pel/                  rik sum chik dü karmapa

དུས་གསུམ་མཁྱེན་པ་མི་ཡི་རྗེ༎                                           འཇིག་རྟེན་འདྲེན་པ་གསོལ་བ་འདེབས༎

dü sum khyen pa mi yi jé/                  jik ten dren pa sölwa dep

Expanding the activity of all Victors,

Single embodiment of all three families[1], Karmapa,

Dusum Khyenpa, Lord of mortals,

To the guide of the world, I pray!

2. Karmapa, Karma Pakshi (1204-1286)

སྣང་སྲིད་ཡེ་ཤེས་ཕྱག་རྒྱས་ཐེབས༎                                      བདེ་ཆེན་ཟུང་འཇུག་གྲུབ་པའི་གཙོ༎

nang si yé shé chak gyé thep              dé chen zung juk drup pai tso

རྣལ་འབྱོར་དབང་ཕྱུག་ཧེ་རུ་ཀ༎                                         ཆོས་ཀྱི་བླ་མར་གསོལ་བ་འདེབས༎

neljor wang chuk hé ru ka                  chö kyi la mar sölwa dep

Establishing the primordial awareness seal of appearance-existence,

Principal of the siddhas’ union of great bliss,

Powerful yogi, Heruka,

To Chokyi Lama[2], I pray!

3.  Karmapa, Rangjung Dorje (1284-1339)[3]

སྤྱན་རས་གཟིགས་དབང་མི་ཡི་གཟུགས༎                                               བརྟན་པའི་འཁོར་ལོའི་མཁྱེན་རབ་ཅན༎

chen ré zik wang mi yi zuk                             ten pé khor lö khyen rap chen

གསང་བ་རྒྱ་མཚོའི་མངའ་བདག་མཆོག༎                                               རང་བྱུང་རྡོ་རྗེར་གསོལ་བ་འདེབས༎

sangwa gyamtsho’i nga dak chok                  rang jung dor jér sölwa dep

The one whose form is Lord Avalokiteśvara

Excellent scholar, Stiracakra [secret name of Mañjuśrī][4]

Supreme sovereign of the ocean of secrets

To Rangjung Dorje, I pray!

4.  Karmapa, Rolpe Dorje (1340-83)

རྒྱལ་སྲས་བྱང་ཆེན་སྤྱོད་པ་ལས༎                                           སྙིང་སྟོབས་གོ་ཆ་བརྟན་པོ་བཞེས༎

gyel sé jang chen chö pa lé                 nying top go cha ten po zhé

གཞན་ལ་ཕན་པའི་རྩ་ལག་མཆོག༎                                       རོལ་པའི་རྡོ་རྗེར་གསོལ་བ་འདེབས༎

zhen la phen pé tsa lak chok               röl pé dor jér sölwa dep

With great bodhisattva conduct of the Victor’s heirs,

Donning the firm armour of immense courage,

The supreme friend who benefits others,

To Rolpa Dorje, I  pray!

5. Karmapa, Dezhin Shegpa (1384 – 1415)

ལྷར་བཅས་སྲིད་ཞིའི་གཙུག་གི་ནོར༎                                                       བརྟན་གཡོ་ཕྱག་རྒྱ་ཆེན་པོར་སྡོམ༎

lhar ché si zhi tsuk gi nor                               ten yo chak gya chen por dom

གངས་ལྗོངས་བསྟན་པ་ཡོངས་ཀྱི་བདག༎                                                དེ་བཞིན་གཤེགས་པར་གསོལ་བ་འདེབས༎

gang jong ten pa yong kyi dak                       dé zhin shek par sölwa dep

Crown jewel of samsara-nirvana, including gods,

Mahāmudrā that seals animate and inanimate,

Master of complete teachings of Land of the Snows [Tibet]

To Dezhin Shegpa, I pray!

6. Karmapa, Thongwa Donden (1416-1453)

ཚུལ་ཁྲིམས་ཕུང་པོ་རབ་བརྗིད་ཅིང༎                                                           ཏིང་འཛིན་མཆོག་ལས་མི་འདའ་ཞིང༎

tsül thrim phung po rap ji ching                     ting dzin chok lé mi da zhing

ཤེས་རབ་ཟབ་མོའི་དཔལ་འཆང་བ༎                                                             མཐོང་བ་དོན་ལྡན་གསོལ་བ་འདེབས༎

shé rap zap moi pel changwa                          thongwa dön den sölwa dep

Shining aggregates of ethical discipline,

Never leaving supreme samadhi,

Holding the glory of profound prajna,

To Thongwa Donden, I pray!

7. Karmapa, Chodrag Gyatso (1454-1506)

ཚར་གཅོད་རྗེས་འཛིན་མཐུ་གྲུབ་ཅིང༎                                                          མཁས་དང་བཙུན་པའི་ཕུལ་དུ་གྱུར༎

tsar chö je dzin thu drup ching                       khé dang tsün pai phül du gyur

མཁྱེན་ནུས་བརྩེ་བའི་གཏེར་ཆེན་པོ༎                                                              ཆོས་གྲགས་རྒྱ་མཚོར་གསོལ་བ་འདེབས༎

khyen nü tsewé ter chen po                            chö drak gya tsor sölwa dep

Accomplished in the power of eliminating [obstacles] and caring [for others],

Most sublime of monastics and scholars,

Great treasure-holder of love and knowledge-power,

To Chodrag Gyatso, I pray!

8. Karmapa, Mikyo Dorje (1507-1554)

མི་འཕྲོག་པ་ཡི་ཐུགས་མངའ་ཞིང༎                                                    ཟབ་དོན་མན་ངག་རྒྱ་མཚོའི་མཛོད༎

mi throk pa yi thuk nga zhing                         zap dön men ngak gya tsoi dzö

ཁམས་གསུམ་ཆོས་ཀྱི་རྒྱལ་པོ་མཆོག༎                                                  མི་བསྐྱོད་རྡོ་རྗེར་གསོལ་བ་འདེབས༎

kham sum chö kyi gyel po chok                      mi kyö dor jér sölwa dep

Master of an inviolable heart,

Treasury of the ocean of ‘deep meaning’ instructions,

Supreme Dharma King of the three realms,

To Mikyo Dorje, I pray!

9. Karmapa, Wangchug Dorje (1556-1603)

འཕགས་ཆེན་ས་ལ་རབ་བཞུགས་ཤིང༎                                                    ལུང་རིགས་ནོར་བུ་གྲམ་པ་བརྡལ༎

phag chen sa la rap zhuk shing                       lung rik nor bu dram pa del

འཆད་རྩོད་རྩོམ་ལ་བསྙིངས་བྲལ་བ༎                                                     དབང་ཕྱུགས་རྡོ་རྗེར་གསོལ་བ་འདེབས༎

ché tsö tsom la nying drelwa                          wang chuk dor jér sölwa dep

Abiding firmly on the noble Arya level,

Spreading scriptures and logic, like a river-bed of jewels,

Ageless explications, debates and compositions,

To Wangchuk Dorje, I pray!

10. Karmapa, Choying Dorje (1604-1674)

ཆོས་བརྒྱད་སྒྱུ་མར་རྟག་ཏུ་གཟིགས༎                                                           རོ་སྙོམས་བརྟུལ་ཞུགས་གྲུབ་པའི་གཙོ༎

chö gyé gyu mar tak tu zik                             ro nyom tül zhuk drup pai tso

ལྷག་པའི་ལྷ་ཡིས་རྗེས་སུ་བཟུང༎                                                                ཆོས་དབྱིངས་རྡོ་རྗེར་གསོལ་བ་འདེབས༎

lhak pai lha yi jé su zung                                chö ying dor jér sölwa dep

Seeing through the illusory eight worldly dharmas,

Chief of the yogic accomplishment ‘one taste’,

Lovingly cared for by supreme deities,

To Choying Dorje, I pray!

11. Karmapa, Yeshe Dorje (1675-1702)

ལས་རླུང་དྷུ་ཏིའི་དབྱིངས་སུ་བཅིངས༎                                                   ཀུན་ཏུ་རྟོག་པ་ཐམས་ཅད་ཟད༎

lé lung dhuti ying su ching                             kün tu tok pa tham ché zé

འཕོ་མེད་ཟུང་འཇུག་ཕྱག་རྒྱའི་སྐུ༎                                                     ཡེ་ཤེས་རྡོ་རྗེར་གསོལ་བ་འདེབས༎

pho mé zung juk chak gya’i ku                      yé shé dor jér sölwa dep

Having bound karmic winds in the dhuti [central channel], and

Exhausted all conceptual thoughts,

The unmoving union, Māhamudrā kāya,

To Yeshe Dorje, I pray!

12. Karmapa, Jangchub Dorje (1703-1732)

སྤངས་རྟོགས་ཡོན་ཏེན་བྱེ་བའི་གཏེར༎                                                མདོ་སྔགས་ཆོས་ཚུལ་འབྱུང་གནས་ཆེ༎

pang tok yön ten jé wai ter                             do ngak chö tshül jung né ché

སྐལ་ལྡན་སྐུ་བཞིར་བཀྲིར་མཛད་པ༎                                                   བྱང་ཆུབ་རྡོ་རྗེར་གསོལ་བ་འདེབས༎

kel den ku zhir trir dzé pa                               jang chup dor jér sölwa dep

Treasury of billion-fold qualities of abandonment and realisation,

Vast source of the dharma ways of sūtra and tantra,

Guiding fortunate ones to the four kāyas

To Changchub Dorje, I pray!

13. Karmapa, Dudul Dorje

Missing from text.

14.  Karmapa, Thegchog Dorje (1798-1868)

རྟག་པར་སེམས་ཅན་དོན་ལ་བརྩོན༎                                                  ཐོས་བསམ་སྒོམ་པ་མཐར་སོན་ཅིང༎

tak par sem chen dön la tsön                          thö sam gom pa tar sön ching

དོན་གཉིས་ལྷུན་གརབ་ཆོས་ཀྱི་རྗེ༎                                                    ཐེག་མཆོག་རྡོ་རྗེར་གསོལ་བ་འདེབས༎

dön nyi lhün drub chö kyi jé                           thek chok dor jér sölwa dep

Forever endeavouring to benefit beings,

Perfected listening, reflection and meditation,

Lord of the Dharma, spontaneously accomplishing the two goals[5]

To Thegchok Dorje, I pray!

15. Karmapa, Khakhyab Dorje (1870-1921)

འཁོར་ལོ་སྡོམ་པ་མི་ཡི་གཟུགས༎                                                      ཁྱབ་བདག་རྡོ་རྗེ་སེམས་དཔའི་སྐུ༎

khor lo dom pa mi yi zuk                               khyap dak dor jé sem pai ku

རིག་རྣམས་ཀུན་འདུས་དཀྱིལ་འཁོར་གཙོ༎                                            མཁའ་ཁྱབ་རྡོ་རྗེར་གསོལ་བ་འདེབས༎

rik nam kün dü kyil khor tso                          kha khyap dor jér sölwa dep

The human form of Chakrasamvara,

All-pervasive kāya Vajrasattva,

Principal mandala, embodiment of all families,

To Khakyab Dorje, I pray!

Dedication

སྲིད་འདི་ཇི་སྲིད་གནས་ཀྱི་བར༎                                                            འཕགས་མཆོག་སྤྲུལ་པ་རྒྱུན་མི་ཆད༎

si di ji si né kyi bar                                         phak chok trül pa gyün mi ché

ཕུལ་བྱུང་ངོ་མཚར་གཏམ་མང་གིས༎                                                       ནོར་འཛིན་ཁྱོན་ཀུན་ཁྱབ་གྱུར་ཅིག༎

phül jung ngo tsar tam mang gi                      nor dzin khön kün khyap gyur chik

As long as I remain in this existence,

May we never be cut off from supreme, noble emanations, and

With numerous exquisite, amazing speeches

May all be completely pervaded by treasure-holders!

བདག་ཀྱང་དེང་ནས་བྱང་ཆུབ་བར༎                                                     མགོན་པོས་འབྲལ་མེད་རྗེས་བཟུང་ཞིང༎

dak kyang deng né jang chup bar                   gön pö drel mé jé zung zhing

རྒྱལ་བ་སེངྒེའི་ང་རོ་དང༎                                                                  དབྱེར་མེད་མངོན་པར་བྱང་ཆུབ་ཤོག༎

gyelwa seng géi nga ro dang                          yer mé ngön par jang chup shok

May I too, from now until awakening,

Be cared for, without separation, by protectors, and

Attain indivisibility from the Victors’ lion’s roar and

The highest awakening!

Translated, compiled and edited by Adele Tomlin (Dakini Publications, 2020).

For more on the Karmapas and Guru Rinpoche, and the prediction letter by the 5th Karmapa, Dezhin Shegpa that prophesised a ‘samaya-breaking demon’ that would cause a massive rift at the time of the transition between the 16th and 17th Karmapas, see this article here.

Here is the video of 17th Karmapa dancing the Vajra Lama dance in Bodh Gaya, 2014.

Further reading

FOOTNOTES

[1] The ‘three families’ here are: 1) Sugata (de bzhin gshegs pa’i rigs), 2) Vajra (rdo rje’i rigs), 3) Lotus (pad ma’i rigs).

[2] The name used here is the name he was given at the age of eleven, when he took initiation. Chokyi Lama (chos kyi bla ma); some sources have his ordination name as Chodzin (chos ‘dzin), while other sources have that as the name he was given at birth. See his Treasury of Lives bio.

[3] Khyentse Chokyi Lodro also wrote a Guru Yoga to the Third Karmapa, for details about that text and a translation into English see here: https://www.shentongkalacakra.com/2020/06/26/new-translation-heart-essence-of-the-profound-meaning-guru-yoga-on-third-karmapa-by-jamyang-khyentse-wangpo/

[4] Stirachakra (brtan pa’i ‘khor lo) is one of the names of Mañjuśrī, it literally means ‘wheel of stability’. Stira Chakra has a colour like fresh saffron, one face, two hands, the right holding aloft a sword and the left holding to the heart the One Hundred Thousand [versed] book; with jewel ornaments and garments of silk. Seated with the feet in the vajrasana [posture]. In 1334, in the History of the Karmapas (Snow Lion, 2012), it states that the 3rd Karmapa established and inaugurated a temple at the famous pilgrimage site the Five Peaked Mountain of Mañjuśrī in China (Wutaishan).  At that time, it is said he performed several rituals there and had a vision of the Bodhisattva, Mañjuśrī.

[5]  The two goals (don gnyis) are the goal for oneself (rang don) and the goal for others (gzhan don).

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