Thirteen Golden Dharmas

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In Tibetan: gser cho chu gsum

These thirteen tantric practioners were transmitted to the Sakya lineage from India and Nepal, and it's considered that the Sakyas are the main holders and maintainers of these traditions.

The reason they are called golden is that the Tibetan students had to pay a lot of gold for obtaining these teachings from the masters in India. Tibet was actually famous for its rich gold deposits.

There are actually various sets of Thirteen Golden Dharmas. Standard to all these sets are:


The Three Red Ones: Vajrayogini of Naropa, Vajrayogini of Indrabhuti, and Vajrayogini of Maitripa. These three are from the Chakrasamvara cycle of tantras.

The Three Great Red Ones: Kurukulla of the Hevajra tantra, Takkiraja from the Guhyasamaja tantra, and Maharakta Ganapati from the Chakrasamvara] tantras.

The Three Small Red Ones: Kurukulla Tara, Red Vasudhara, and Tinuma.

The other four standard deities: Black Manjushri, Sabala Garuda from the Kalachakra tantra, and Simhanada Avalokiteshvara from its own tantra, and Red Jambhala from the Chakrasamvara tantras.

The alternate deities are: Simhamukha and Amaravajradevi from the Chakrasamvara tantras, and Amitayus from its own tantra.