Terton Dudjom Lingpa

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Terton Dudjom Lingpa

Though he lived among ordinary people most of the time, Dudjom Lingpa had hardly been separated from the Buddha Fields. He received only limited teachings and transmissions from human teachers, including Lama Jigme, Lama Jamyang, Kathok Chak-tsa Tulku and Patrul Rinpoche. Yet he had received unceasing teachings from the various Buddhas and enlightened beings in his constant "pure visions". Indeed, hosts of Buddhas, enlightened beings, Dakas and Dakinis were constantly protecting, cherishing and nourishing him spiritually, as well as physically.

At the age of 23, Dudjom Lingpa migrated from his native home of the Ser Valley to the Mar Valley. He stayed there for a long time under the patronage of the Gili family, and so he was came to be popularly known as the Gili Terton.

Then, at the age of 25, from among the rocks of Ba-ter of the Mar Valley, Dudjom Lingpa revealed the "prophetic guide" (kha byang) which had all the instructions of how he should discover and reveal his own "Treasures" (Ters).

In the same year, with the guidance from the "prophetic guide" Dudjom Lingpa started to discover and reveal his own major "Earth Treasures" from Ngala Tak-tse of the Ser Valley.

Since then, Dudjom Lingpa had discovered altogether twenty volumes of these concealed teachings, hidden in the ninth century by Guru Rinpoche himself, as well as many sacred objects as both "Mind Treasures" (Gong-Ters) and "Earth Treasures" (Sa-Ters). These came to be known as "The New Treasures of Dudjom" (Dudjom Tersar).

It was reported that Dudjom Lingpa was invited by his two famous contemporaries Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo and Jamgon Kongtrul the Great to include his "New Treasures" (Tersar) into their collection of the "Precious Treasury of Terma" (Rinchen Terdzo), but he politely declined their kind offer by saying that: "wherever the Rinchen Terdzo will be spread, it will be the same with my Tersar".

His Final Years Except for two brief visits to the Dza-chukha Valley, Dudjom Lingpa spent his life wholly in three main places, namely: the Ser Valley, the Do Valley and the Mar Valley in Eastern Tibet. At the age of 46, Dudjom Lingpa again migrated to Lama-rong and other places in the Upper Ser Valley. Then, finally at the age of 54, he moved to the Li Gorge in the Upper Do Valley, where he built the Dartsang Kalzang Gon Hermitage, which was to become his residence for the rest of his life. Towards the end of his life, it was Dudjom Lingpa's intention to reveal and visit the sacred land of Pemakod in Kongpo Valley in Central Tibet, which is one of the four major Hidden Lands blessed by Guru Rinpoche as hiding places for the faithful Dharma practitioners in the Dark Ages. But being unable to do so, Dudjom Lingpa prophesized that his successor would be born there and reveal it himself. Furthermore, it was also prophesized on his successor by Dudjom Lingpa that "the billions of beings who come into contact with him will be liberated just by the sight, the recognition, the touch, and the experience, and they will be reborn in the Kingdom of Shambhala." With this, Dudjom Lingpa passed away in 1904, and took rebirth as Kyabje Dudjom Jigdral Yeshe Dorje (1904-1987), Dudjom Rinpoche the Second, in Pemakod.


His Family Members & Disciples

Dudjom Lingpa had eight sons:

1. Tersay Drimed Ozer (1881-1924), a great scholar and Terton whose consort was the famous wisdom dakini Sera Khandro Dewai Dorje (1899-1952)

2. Jigme Tenpey Nyima (1865-1926), the third Dodrupchen Rinpoche

3. Khyentul Dzamling Wangyal (1868-1907), a Tulku of Do Khyentse (1800-1866)

4. Tulku of Cheyo Rigdzin Chenmo, who passed away in early childhood

5. Tulku Lhachen Topgyal ( or simply as Tulku Lhatop)

6. Tulku Pema Dorje ( who had lived at Dodrupchen Monastery)

7. Patrul Namkhai Jigme, the Tulku of Patrul Rinpoche

and 8. Tersay Dorje Dradul (1891-1959), who became the successor of Dudjom Lingpa at the Dartsang Kalzang Gon Hermitage.

Besides this, there were thirteen disciples of the Great Terton Dudjom Lingpa who had attained the rainbow body; and that there were others of his lineage who had the same attainments, as was recorded by Kyabje Dudjom Rinpoche in his work The Fundamentals and History of the Nyingma School of Tibetan Buddhism (with the English translation by Gyurme Dorje and Matthew Kapstein and published by Wisdom Publications, 199 Elm St., Somerville, MA02144, U.S.A, 1990, Vol.1, p.919).


Main Teachers

Main Students

Main Lineages

Alternate Names & Spellings

  • Dudjom Rinpoche
  • Terchen Dudjom Lingpa
  • Trakthung Dudjom Lingpa
  • Geter Dudjom Lingpa
  • Trakthung Nuden Dorje
  • Geter Dudjom Lingpa Trakthung Nuden Dorje

Other Reference Sources

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