Shikpo Lingpa

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Shikpo Lingpa aka Shikpo Lingpa Gargyi Wangchuk Tsal (Tib. ཞིག་པོ་གླིང་པ་གར་གྱི་དབང་ཕྱུག་རྩལ་, Wyl. zhig po gling pa gar gyi dbang phyug rtsal) (1524-1583) also known as the “treasure revealer of Khyung Tsang Drak” (khyung tshang brag) was especially known for his treasure revelations focused on Avalokiteshvara and the repelling of invading armies.

Biography

Shikpo Lingpa was an incarnation of prince Murub Tsenpo. In the year 1557, following a prophecy of Padmasambhava, Shikpo Lingpa built Dorjé Lhakhang (rdo rje’i lha khang) on the north-eastern side of Lhasa, aimed at protecting the Lhasa Jokhang temple from floods. Unfortunately, the temple disappeared completely within 40 years after its constructions.[1] In the year 1563 Shikpo Lingpa discovered his most famous terma treasure The Cycle of Teachings on the Great Compassionate One that Liberates from Saṃsāra (thugs rje chen po ’khor ba las sgrol gyi chos skor) from the Jokhang in Lhasa.[2] Together with his disciple Sokdokpa Lodrö Gyaltsen, Shikpo Lingpa engaged in fierce rituals aimed at repelling invading Mongol armies. Shikpo Lingpa’s teachings especially spread and were practised in Sikkim.

Students

Some of his main disciples are:

  • Ngadak Taksham Can (mnga’ bdag stag sham can) (d. 1623) who became the holder of thugs rje chen po ’khor ba las sgrol gyi chos sko[3]
  • Sokdokpa Lodrö Gyaltsen (1552-1624), who wrote the biography of Shikpo Lingpa.
  • Shabdrung Mipham Chögyal (zhabs drung mi pham chos rgyal) (1543-1606), the head of the Drukpa Kagyü school. He married Shikpo Lingpa’s daugther. Their son Mipham Tenpé Nyima (mi pham bstan pa’i nyi ma) (1567-1619) became the father of Shabdrung Ngakwang Namgyal (zhabs drung Ngag dbang rnam rgyal) (1594-1651), the founder of the Buddhist state of Bhutan.[4]

Writings

His writings include:

  • The Cycle of Teachings on the Great Compassionate One that Liberates from Saṃsāra (thugs rje chen po ’khor ba las sgrol gyi chos skor)
  • The Profound Teaching on the Gathering of the Victorious Ones (zab chos rgyal ba ’dus)
  • The Secret Heart Essence of the Great Perfection (Tib. rdzogs chen gsang ba snying thig)
  • The Cycle on the Great Force of Vajrapāṇi (phyag na rdo rje stobs po che’i skor)
  • Glorious Cakrasaṃvara (dPal bde mchog ’khor lo)[5]
  • Twenty-five Ways to Repel Armies (dmag bzlog nyer lnga)

References

  • Akester, Matthew. “The ‘Vajra Temple’ of gTer ston Zhig po gling pa and the Politics of Flood Control in 16th Century lHa sa”. The Tibet Journal, 26: 1, 2001, 3-24.
  • Akester, Matthew. “Khyung tshang brag: The ‘Black Demon Peering’ at lHa-sa”. The Tibet Journal, 26: 1, 2001, 25-34.
  • Decleer, Hubert. “Another Newar Link with Suratabajra & Lhasa’s White Crystal Cave? Zhigpo-lingpa’s Meditation Scenario on the Five Arya Brother Images”. The Great Compassion. International Buddhist Review, 1, 2004, 53-8.
  • Ehrhard, Franz-Karl. “The mNga'-bdag Family and the Tradition of Rig 'dzin Zhig po gling pa (1524-1583) in Sikkim.” Bulletin of Tibetology<nowiki> [Special issue: Tibetan Lamas in Sikkim], vol. 41, no. 2 (2005), 11-29.
  • Gentry, James. “Treasure Revealer Zhig po gling pa: Political Leader of sNang rtse and Guru of Sog bzlog pa.” In ’’Substance and Sense: Objects of Power in the Life, Writings, and Legacy of the Tibetan Ritual Master Sog bzlog pa Blo gros rgyal mtshan.’’ Doctoral dissertation, Harvard University, 2014: 66-87.

Notes

  1. Matthew Akester, “The ‘Vajra Temple’ of gTer ston Zhig po gling pa and the Politics of Flood Control in 16th Century lHa sa,” The Tibet Journal, 26: 1, 2001, 3-4.
  2. Franz-Karl Ehrhard, “The mNga'-bdag Family and the Tradition of Rig 'dzin Zhig po gling pa (1524-1583) in Sikkim,” Bulletin of Tibetology [Special issue: Tibetan Lamas in Sikkim], vol. 41, no. 2 (2005), 23.
  3. Ibid., 15-16.
  4. Ibid., 17.
  5. Ibid., 26.

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