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Buddha with the Six Ornaments and Two Supreme Ones

Tengyur (Tib. བསྟན་འགྱུར་, Wyl. bstan 'gyur) – the commentaries on the teachings of the Buddha. The Tibetan Buddhist Canon is divided into the actual words of the Buddha contained in the Kangyur, and the treatises composed by the learned and accomplished masters of India, which are contained in the Tengyur.

Ringu Tulku Rinpoche has said:

"All the teachings in Buddhism are divided into two types: the direct teaching of the Buddha and the commentaries. The teachings that come directly from the Buddha are called sutras in Sanskrit and Kangyur in Tibetan. You might call them the scriptural or canonical teachings. The commentaries are called shastras in Sanskrit and tenchö in Tibetan. In Tibetan, this Kangyur is 108 volumes, and the Tengyur, the translation of the commentaries that come from India, is 228 volumes. The commentaries written later on by Tibetans and others can also be called tenchö."[1]

Major Editions

In total there are currently five known Tengyur editions, all of which are printed xylograph collections. Stanley David claims that there is much greater uniformity among Tengyur editions than those of the Kangyur and thus he divides them into two groups:[2]

Group A:

Group B:

In addition, there is the Pedurma (dpe bsdur ma) edition, which is a comparative edition, recently created, based the Derge collection.


  1. Source needed.
  2. Stanley, David Phillip. Tibetan Buddhist Canon. Tibetan and Himalayan Digital Library (THL), 2005. http://www.thlib.org/encyclopedias/literary/canons/index.php#!essay=/stanley/tibcanons/s/b2

External Links