Chod/Machig Labdron

Machig Labdron with Chod lineage holders Vajrayogini, Tara and Padampa Sangye.

This page is for research and translations on Chod and Machig Labdron (1055-1149). The life story of Machik Labdron (ma gcig labs sgron) has been recounted in several different Tibetan hagiographies (rnam thar), with considerable differences among them, see Machig’s Treasury of Lives biography.

Research and Translations

TRANSLATED TEXT: Beggar’s Body Banquet by Je Jigten Sumgon with Introduction.

BEGGAR’S BODY BANQUET (Kusāli Tshog Sog) with Vajravārāhi : Sacred Instructions by Je Jigten Sumgon and teaching by Drupon Rinchen Dorje Rinpoche

CHOD LINEAGES AND MACHIG LABDRON: Indic-Tibetan Sources, Contemporary Works, The Karmapas and ‘The Long Lineage Supplication to Machig” by Bengar Jampel Zangpo


Allione, Tsultrim. “The Biography of Machig Labdron (1055-1145),” 2000 (1984). Women of Wisdom. Ithaca, New York: Snow Lion.

Edou, Jérôme. 1996. Machik Labdron and the Foundations of Chöd. Ithaca, New York: Snow Lion Publications.

Dudjom Lingpa. 1990. Throma Nagmo: a Practice Cycle for Realization of the Wrathful Black Dakini, A Treasure of Dudjom Lingpa. Trans. Sarah Harding. Junction City, CA: Padma.

Gyatso, Janet. 1985. “The development of the gcod tradition.” In Soundings in Tibetan Civilization. B.N. Aziz and M. Kapstein, eds, pp. 320-341. New Delhi: Manohar

Kollmar-Paulenz, Karénina. 1993. ‘Der Schmuck der Befreiung‘: Die Geschichte der Zhi byed-und gCod-Schule des tibetischen Buddhismus. Wiesbaden: Harrowitz Verlag.

Kollmar-Paulenz, Karénina. 1998. “Ma gcig lab sgron ma – The Life of a Tibetan Woman Mystic Between Adaption and Rebellion.” Tibet Journal 23 (2), 11-32.

Lo Bue, Erberto. 1994. “A Case of Mistaken Identity: Ma-gcig Labs-sgron and Ma-gcig Zha ma.” In Tibetan Studies: Proceedings of the 6th Seminar of International Association of Tibetan Studies, pp. 481-490. Per Kvaerne, ed. Oslo: The Institute for Comparative Research in Human Culture.

Ma gcig lab sgron. 1974. Phung po gzan skyur gyi rnam bshad gcod kyi don gsal byed. In Gcod kyi chos skor. Byams pa bsod nams, ed., pp. 10-410. New Delhi: Tibet House.

Machik Labdron. 2003. Machik’s Complete Explanation: Clarifying the Meaning of Chöd: A Complete Explanation of Casting Out the Body as Food (Phung po gzan skyur gyi rnam bshad gcod kyi don gsal byed). Sarah Harding, trans. Ithaca, NY: Snow Lion.

Orofino, Giacomella. 1987. Contributo allo studio dell’ insegnamento di Ma gcig Lab sgron. Supplemento n. 53 agli Annali, vol. 47, Napoli: Istituto Universitario Orientale.

Orofino, Giacomella. 2000. The great wisdom mother and the gcod tradition. In Tantra in Practice. David Gordon White, ed., 320-341. Princeton: Princeton University Press.

Roerich, George, trans. 1996. The Blue Annals. Delhi: Motilal Banarsidas.

Sorensen, Michelle (2013) Making the Old New Again and Again: Legitimation and Innovation in the Tibetan Buddhist Chöd Tradition. PhD Columbia University.

Padampa Sangye, Indian Mahasiddha and lineage holder and founder of Zhije. Teacher of Machig Labdron.
Wrathful, black form of Vajrayogini, Troma Nagmo. Image source, HAR.
12th Century Tibetan thangka of Machig Labdron. See