Lord of the sixth family

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The Lord of the Sixth Family is an epithet of Vajradhara, who is the main buddha of the sixth family, the buddha family that embodies all five families. Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche said:

To describe dharmakaya Samantabhadra and the five families of victorious ones from the perspective of those to be trained: In the tradition of the New Translation School, the dharmakaya buddha Samantabhadra, the primordial buddha who is perfectly enlightened from the very beginning, is called Vajradhara or Vajradhara the sixth. As the lord of all the families, he is the lord of the five families, and so he is known as the sixth, Vajradhara, which refers to the dharmakaya. The nature of the dharmakaya can be understood in terms of the five wisdoms, which are connected with the five buddha families. The five victorious ones associated with those families are Akshobhya, Ratnasambhava, Amitabha, Amoghasiddhi, and Vairochana. Though there is this fivefold classification, there are essentially no differences of high and low or greater or lesser compassion between Samantabhadra and the five victorious ones. They are all buddhas. They can be compared to many forms reflecting in a crystal ball.[1]


  1. Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, Primordial Purity: Oral Instructions on the Three Words That Strike the Vital Point, Transl. Ane Jinba Palmo, Shambhala, 2016