Jetsun Tāranātha

Jetsun Tāranātha (1575-1634)

This page is for posts, articles and translations about Jetsun Tāranātha (1575-1634), one of the most amazing and accomplished Tibetan Buddhist masters of the Jonang, Shangpa Kagyu and Rime traditions. Revered by great masters of all the major lineages, such as 19th Century Rime founders, Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo and Jamgon Kongtrul the Great, he was an accomplished scholar, translator and practitioner.  Tāranātha’s works on Kālacakra are still widely used today within the Jonang tradition and practitioners of Dro Kālacakra. As I discovered when translating some of these texts, Jamgon Kongtrul copied his Kālacakra texts word for word in his Treasuries! For more on his lifestory, see his online bio by Dr. Cyrus Stearns at Treasury of Lives.

Texts and Translations

A Hundred Blazing Lights: Supplementary Commentary on ‘Meaningful to See’ by Jetsun Tāranātha

Innate Kālacakra: Instruction Texts and Recitations by Jetsun Tāranātha and Bamda Gelek Gyamtso

Meaningful to See: Guidance on the Profound Path of the Vajra-Yogas‘ by Jetsun Tāranātha

Tāranātha’s Commentary on the Heart Sutra

Supplication to the Kālacakra Lineage by Jetsun Tāranātha

Lion-Faced Dakini sadhana

The Explicit and Hidden Aspects of Tāra: A Commentary on the Twenty-One Tāras‘ by Jetsun Tāranātha


A Woman’s Voice : ‘Secret Primordial-Wisdom’, the Autobiography of Kunga Trinley Wangmo, Zhentong lineage holder and consort of Tāranātha

The meaning of ‘innate’ (lhan skyes) in generation stage Kālacakra

The ‘vajra descent’ and ‘authentic completion stage’: the 8th Karmapa and Tāranātha on the meaning of ‘vajra’ and ‘non-conceptual primordial awareness’

New Translation: Jetsun Tāranātha’s The Ornament of Madhyamaka Empty-of-Other

Love is the water of compassion’: Tāranātha on the ‘four immeasurables’ in A Hundred Blazing Lights

Public Lecture on Tāranātha‘s Commentary on Heart Sutra

Jetsun Tāranātha on the meaning of ‘three confidences’

Jetsun Tāranātha and the Shangpa Kagyu

Kālacakra as the ‘ultimate pinnacle’ of all the tantras: Jetsun Tāranātha and 8th Karmapa, Mikyo Dorje


Today the Parinirvana of Jonang master, Jetsun Taranatha (1575-1634)

Taranatha text used for the Five Tantric Deities of Shangpa Kagyu Empowerment at Bokar Monastery today

‘A Hundred Blazing Lights’: Tāranātha on the meaning of ‘profound’ and ‘exceptional devotion in the ‘profound path of vajra-yogas’

Tāranātha on Vajrasattva in ‘A Hundred Blazing Lights’: the nature of karma, the four ‘opponent powers’ and the necessity of purification

Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo, Tāranātha and Nyingma lineage texts on Kālacakra


Here is a recent short video teaching on Jetsun Taranatha by Jonang lama, Khentrul Rinpoche: