Snow Lion’s Turquoise Mane

pp. 72-73 Crocodile Treasure

p. 72

"Cho:gyur Lingpa rode straight into the river and disappeared. After five minutes he emerged on the other side ... . ... an enormous monster in the

p. 73

river was guarding a Dharma treasure, a terma ... . According to the ... prophecy, the great crocodile would close its mouth at noon on that very full-moon day; if he did, no one would be able to recover that important terma for another sixty years. ... When Cho:gyur emerged from the raging river, he had a yellow parchment scroll in his hand, covered with shimmering, mystic script of the dakinis [d.akini-s]. He had plucked it from between the crocodile’s teeth just before midday."

pp. 81-82 Lake of Gold Coins

p. 81

"near a high windswept mountain pass where the runoff waters from icy peaks gathered, a gargantuan woman cloaked in robes of coarse wool suddenly appeared. ...

p. 82

The giant guardian deity swiftly drew her cloak around herself ... . Then she disappeared."

pp. 98-101 Midway Foundeth Kas`mira

p. 100

"One day, while crossing the Ganges on a raft, Ananda [Ananda] met in midstream a great ... seer, accompanied by five hundred disciples. ... Ananda instantly materialized an island in midstream. ... The rishi [r.s.i] ... immediately became a fully liberated arhat. He became renowned as Madhyantika [Madhya-antika], or Midway. ... Ananda ... reminisced that Sakyamuni [S`akya-muni] Buddha miself had predicted that an arhat named Midway would attain liberation from the boioling rapids of birth and death in the middle of a great river and would subsequently spread the Dharma throughout mountainous, uninhabited Kashmir [Kas`mira]. ... Twenty years later, the venerable Midway fulfilled the prediction and reached remote Kashmir. ... The nagas [naga-s] .. created crackling lightning, awesome thunderstorms, and earthquakes. ...

p. 101

Madhyantika ... requested the nagas and local earth guardians to offer their land ... and to relinquish into his care the Prajna Paramita Sutras [Prajn~a Paramita Sutra-s] for the benefit of the world. ... "... We will offer the land covered by your seat. {cf. meager offer of land by Bali to Vamana} As for the Wisdom Sutras, it is not yet time for their revelation"".

pp. 110-111 Great Dharma Lady

p. 110

"in Shoto, near Drigung, lived a husband and wife ... . ... the childless couple were advised to make a pilgrimage to the great self-arisen stupa [stupa] (monument) of Swayambhu [Svayam-bhu] in the Kathmandu Valley in Nepal ... . Moths later, still in Nepal, the pair shared a marvelous dream : the sun and moon radiated crystal light rays upon them. ... During the following year, a radiant girl-child was born to them, amid many auspicious signs. Rainbows arched over the house at her painless birth, water turned to milk, and divine fragrances filled the air. Everyone agreed that the girl must be ... an incarnation of the Dakini Queen Vajra Yogini, for it had been foretold that the karma-dakini would be born ... in Shoto. ... They named her Drolma, which is Tibetan for Tara [Tara]. Drolma means "Liberatrice." ... One day the stalwart girl joined a merchant’s caravan leaving from Kham. {Khams is Bon, indicating that so were her relatives and herself.} ...

p. 111

"Look, these square sheep bones," Drolma prognosticated, "augur that we will have four illuminated sons." {divination with bones is Bon.} ...

Then she mounted her blue horse and soared away into the dakini Buddha-fields, singing to the accompaniment of heavenly musicians."

pp. 114-115 Auspicious Incense-Offering

p. 114

"a wealthy patron named Nyemay offered to feed the Buddha Vipasyi [Vipas`yin] for three months. ...

p. 115

... Nyemai contrived to cook the Buddha’s meals on fire stoked by bundles of incense – thus perfuming the entire town ... for three months. By virtue of this merit, the layman Nyemai was reborn as the arhat Angaja [Anga-ja ‘limb-produced’], the Incense Master." {"Ven.a was born to queen Sunitha and king Anga." (SA&R, p. 105) "The legend of Ven.a-Pr.thu, mentioned in the Manu Smr.ti, is related in the Mhb and and can be traced back, in the form Pr.thi Vain.ya, to the A[tharva]V[eda] 8,10, to the S`[atapatha]B[rahman.a] (5,3,5,4) and to the TB ... and finally to the RV." (ibid., p. 103) The gandharva Vis`va-ruci milked forth perfume from the divine earth-cow (ibid., p. 119).}

SA&R = DURHAM INDOLOGICAL SERIES, No. 2. Karel Werner : Symbols in Art and Religion. 1990.

pp. 120-122 Sheep, Ox, Goat


the __

said : "I take refuge in the __."













pp. 126-127 Forest of Tara-s

p. 126

"Ages ago, an intrepid female bodhisattva named Wisdom Moon ... empowered the entire intuitive universe by vowing to reincarnate again and again in female form until the ocean of samsaric existence is dry and all beings liberated from suffering. ... Eventually, ... she became Tara ... . ...

p. 127

At one time a demonic sprite ... assumed multifarious forms in order to ... beguile the spiritual practitioners – seducing some by appearing as a celestial maiden ... . ... One elderly monk ... prayed to Tara ...; in a dreamlike vision, Tara revealed her numinous form and told him what to do. The monk attached twenty-one images (one for each form of the deity Tara) to trees all over the haunted forest. From then on, whatever phantasmagorical apparitions the mischievous sprite contrived, the monks and nuns spontaneously perceived them as nothing other than the various forms of Tara."

pp. 155-157 Transsubstantiation

p. 155

"A Nepali Brahmin who lived near Tsurphu had a beautiful wife ... . ... On one occasion, just as she was leaving, her husband ... insisted upon joining her. ... The lovely lady, an incarnate dakini ... exclaimed, "... Climb on my back." And she flew into the sky, with him aboard.

p. 156

Eventually they reached a sacred site where everything seemed to be made of vermilion; it was the fabled dakini land called Urgyen Khandro Ling. The couple landed. Innumerable nubile women of all ages with reddish skin, naked and adorned with flashing jewels and ornaments of bone, were on their way to an imposing palace, inside of which, on a grand throne, sat ... the enlightened dakini queen, Vajra Yogini! ... When the transubstantiated substances were distributed as blessings, the leper’s brains were ladled in tiny portions from the consecrated upturned skull-cup, to be imbibed by the enchanted company. ... Opening his hand, the Brahmin saw seven grains. ...

p. 157

"... The seven grains mean that you will die in seven days. Immediately afterward, you will be reborn in the dakini paradise ... . ..." When seven days had passed, he died and was reborn in the celestial dakini paradise called Dumatala [D.oma-tala?]."

pp. 165-167 Black Yogin & Hound-Master





"The black yogi, Nagpo Cho:pa, wandered naked ..., adorned only by ornaments made of bone. In graveyards and charnel grounds,

{"there met him a certain man that had devils a long time, and ware no clothes, neither abode in any house, but in the tombs." (Loukas 8:27)}


her performed various austere tantric rites ... . ... Then Nagpo Cho:pa gazed intently at a large tree, and all its leaves fell suddenly to the ground.

{"And when he saw a fig tree in the way, he ... said unto it, Let no fruit grow on thee henceforward for ever. And presently the fig tree withered away." (Matthaios 21:19)}


The dakini ... pointed to the leaves strewn everywhere about them. Suddenly all the leaves were in place on the tree again! ...

{"the Queen of the South shall rise up" (Matthaios 12:42, Loukas 11:31)}


Kukkuripa, however, ... sleeps in an outhouse, consorts with bitches ... ."

{Paul of wolf-tribe Binjamin}

pp. 169-170 Resurrection

p. 169

"Vajra Kilaya (or Dorje Phurba in Tibetan) is a wrathful, dark blue meditation deity ... in the shape of a spike".

p. 170

"The translator Nyak Jn~anakumara [Jn~ana-kumara] ... had prodigious powers. ... Chim Carok (the Crow of Chim) ... attacked the master himself ... with a blacksmith’s iron hammer. Once Vimalamitra and Nyak were propitiating Vajra Kilaya together in a cave in Lhodrak. The twenty-one magic daggers arranged in a mandala on the altar started knocking against each other and emitting sparks. ... A pair of crows, who happened to hail from Chim, approached the yawning mouth of the cave. Nyak wrathfully brandished his magic dagger in their direction, and one crow fell dead at his feet. ... Pandit Vimalamitra sprinkled sand over it, gently blowing ... upon the carcass. The bird sprang to life".

pp. 174-176 Cuckoo’s Cry of Awareness

p. 174

"Vairotsana [Vairos.ana] ... traveled to the great Nine-Stor[e]y Pagoda miraculously created by the Dzogchen siddha Sri Simha [S`ri Simha], the Glorious Lion ... . [There he] met a lithe yogini carrying water in a clay jug on her head. ... Using his powerful psychokinetic gaze, Vairotsana made her water jug sink to the ground as if it weighed a ton; she was unable to lift it. The yogini suddenly bared her breasts, in a flash revealing in her heart the magnificent ... Vajradhatu [Vajra-dhatu] – a marvelous, kaleidoscopic

p. 175

vision of ... mystic symbols ... amid swirling geometrical forms. ... she led the silent Vairotsana to Sri Simha. ... At midnight, Sri Simha for the first time committed to writing the incomparable secret pith-instructions of the mind class of Ati Yoga Tantra, writing on white silk with the milk of a white goat. He demonstrated to Vairo how the written characters appeared ... when the silk cloth was fumigated with warm smoke. ...

p. 176

Soon afterward, Vairotsana left the Lion Master and sojourned in the Smoky Cremation ... . There he had a vision of ... the first Dzogchen teacher, ... Diamond Laughter Master, Garab Dorje ... . ... Eventually, Vairotsana returned to his native Tibet in record time by means of the yogic power known as "swift feet," ... all but flying over the ground."

pp. 177-179 Yogin Dzen & the Vajra Bridge

p. 177

"Sherab Jungnay left this world at an advanced age in a great blaze of light on top of Mount Lhari in Phukpochay – hanging his robe, hat, skullcap, and large bodhi-seed rosary on a juniper tree ... . ...

p. 178

Bagom confided what he had never before divulged – that he, Tantrika Bagom, was the sole holder of Vairotsana’s Vajra Bridge transmission, through which one could attain ... in a single lifetime ...the deathless Rainbow Light Body and leaving not a single trace of one’s mortal body when departing from this world at death. ... Finally Lama Bagrom imparted that unique esoteric doctrine to Dzeng ... . ... Lama Bagrom passed away in a blaze of rainbow light ... . ...

p. 179

On the first occasion that Dzeng expounded the mystic Vajra Bridge, a nun and a man from Kham both realized its profound essence and achieved the Rainbow Light body, disappearing in bursts of light without leaving a single trace behind. ... Dzeng ... read minds, made accurate prophecies and detailed predictions, and appeared instantaneously in distant places."

pp. 191-192 Blanket Master & Witches

p. 191

"King Indrabhuti [Indra-bhuti] ... was a personal disciple of the celebrated householder Vimalakirti [Vimala-kirti], protagonist of the Vimalakirti Nirdesa Sutra [Vimala-kirti Nirdes`a Sutra]. ... King Indrabhuti’s son ..., Crown Prince Sakraputra [S`akra-putra], was also known as Indrabhuti the Younger. He later became renowned as Kambalapada [Kambala-pada], the Blanket Master. ... Once the Crown Prince went to sleep ... . ... For years ... he slumbered without waking ... . ...

p. 192

Once five hundred witches sought him out. ... the sorcereresses ... were immediately transformed into five hundred sheep-headed demonesses. {are they personifications of the "sheep-filter", the woolen filter for filtering Soma mentioned in the R.c Veda samhita?} ... The crowd of sorcereresses soon appeared before King Indrabhuti. the naked Kambalapada pointed ... at each of them in turn, transforming them into various creatures with bestial heads. Then each creature vomited forth one fragment of the yogi’s old blanket. A courtier swiftly sewed all the fragments together. However, three pieces remained unaccounted for. ... Then the three sorceresses, who happened to be members of Indrabhuti’s harem, were brought forth."

pp. 237-239 A Singing Yogin Achieveth Flight

p. 237

"the singing yogi Shabkar Rinpoche, accompanied by two disciples, was leading a horse laden with provisions over a mountain pass. There he encountered an old hag ... . ...

p. 239

... she changed herself into the radiant form of the deity Vajra Varahi [Vajra Varahi], blazing brilliantly red, with her wrathfully grimacing principal head surmounted by the grunting, smaller head of a black sow. Naked, adorned only with bones, jewels, and a garland of freshly severed skulls, she wielded a sharp flaying knife in one upraised hand and held a skullcup brimming with blood in the other. ... Handing Shabkar a multicolored medicine pouch containing various sacred relics, alchemical powders, and enlightenment pills, she suddenly soared aloft ... . Then, with the medicine bag tucked under the folds of his robe, a beatific Shabkar soared effortlessly up after her".

Surya Das : The Snow Lion’s Turquoise Mane. HarperSanFrancisco, 1992.