Mandarava

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Mandarava (man da ra ba me tog).

Brief Biography

Princess of Zahor and close disciple of Guru Rinpoche. One of his five main consorts. Her name refers to the coral tree, Erythrina Indica, one of the five trees of paradise, which has brilliant scarlet flowers. She is said to be identical with the dakini Niguma and the yogini by the name Adorned with Human Bone Ornaments.

In The Precious Garland of Lapis Lazuli, Jamgön Kongtrül says, "Born as the daughter of Vihardhara, the king of Zahor, and Queen Mohauki accompanied by miraculous signs, (and because of her great beauty), many kings from India and China vied to take her as their bride. Nevertheless, she had an unshakable renunciation and entered the gate of the Dharma. Padmasambhava perceived that she was to be his disciple and accepted her as his spiritual consort, but the king, fearing that his bloodline would be contaminated, had the master burned alive. When Padmasambhava showed the miracle of transforming the mass of fire into a lake, the king gained faith and without hesitation offered his entire kingdom and the princess. When the king requested teachings, Padmasambhava showered upon twenty-one disciples the great rain of the Dharma by transmitting the tantras, scriptures and oral instructions of Kadü Chökyi Gyamtso, the Dharma Ocean Embodying All Teachings. Thus, the master established the king and his ministers on the vidyadhara levels. Guru Rinpoche accepted her as his consort and in Maratika, the Cave of Bringing Death to and End, both master and consort displayed the manner of achieving the unified vajra body on the vidyadhara level of life mastery.
Mandarava remained in India and has directly and indirectly brought a tremendous benefit to beings. In Tibet, she appeared miraculously at the great Dharma Wheel of Tramdruk where she exchanged symbolic praises and replies with Guru Rinpoche. The details of this are recorded extensively in the Padma Kathang. An independent life story of Mandarava is found in the collected writings of Orgyen Lingpa. Mandarava was a wisdom dakini among whose different names and manifestations are counted the yogini Adorned with Human Bone Ornaments, Mirükyi Gyenchen, at the time of Lord Marpa, Risülkyi Naljorma at the time of Nyen Lotsawa, and Drubpey Gyalmo at the time of Rechungpa. Mandarava is also accepted as being Chushingi Nyemachen, the consort of Maitripa, as well as the dakini Niguma. Her compassionate emanations and her blessings are beyond any doubt and since she attained the indestructible rainbow body she is surely present (in the world) right now."

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