Main CategoriesTibetan BuddhismJe Tsongkhapa and the Kadam/Gelug School Great Treatise on the Stages of the Path to Enlightenment, The (Lamrim Chenmo, Volume Three)

Great Treatise on the Stages of the Path to Enlightenment, The (Lamrim Chenmo, Volume Three)

Product no.: 1-55939-166-9
The Great Treatise on the Stages of the Path to Enlightenment (Lamrim Chenmo) is one of the brightest jewels in the world's treasury of sacred literature.

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Publisher's Synopsis
The Gelug school, which Lama Tsongkhapa founded, came from the Kadam tradition, where Atisha and other great masters devised a systemized structure of study known as the lamrim (the gradual path to enlightenment), laying out the steps a practitioner must take in order to progress to enlightenment.

Using Atisha’s Lamp of the Path as his base, Lama Tsongkhapa created this masterpiece in 1402, and it would soon become one of the most renowned books of spiritual practice and philosophy in Tibetan Buddhism. The English translation, published by Snow Lion Publications, has been the work of a team of translators led by Guy Newland. Volume three contains a presentation of the two most important topics to be found in the Lamrim Chenmo: meditative serenity (shamatha) and supramundane insight into the nature of reality (vipasyana).


"The present translation in three volumes is a remarkable accomplishment and a great gift to all students and practitioners of Vajrayana. The teachings given open-handedly in this key text are essential for anyone hoping to enter into, or attain success in, the higher (Tantric) stages of the path. The wisdom found in the nearly 1200 pages of this work is truly astonishing and liberating.

As Robert Thurman mentions in his Foreword, Je Tsongkhapa's treatise can cause a 'paradigm shift' in the reader: from a self-centered individual concerned with his own happiness to a bodhisattva for whom the happiness of others has become an ultimate concern. May it be so!"       ~Georg Feuerstein

"Of the many works of the Tibetan master Tsongkhapa, none compare in terms of popularity and breadth of influence with his Great Treatise on the Stages of the Path to Enlightenment (Lamrim Chenmo), which has been treasured by practitioners and scholars alike for centuries. What distinguishes it as one of the principal texts of Mahayana Buddhism is its scope and clarity.

It expounds the entire path from the way one should rely on a spiritual teacher, which is the very root, right up to the attainment of Buddhahood, which is the final fruit. The various stages of the path are presented so clearly and systematically that they can be easily understood and are inspiring to put into practice."      ~The 14th Dalai Lama

"One of the greatest religious or secular works in the library of our human heritage."       ~Robert Thurman

"How to focus your mind on the object of meditation

This has three parts:

1. Presenting the flawless method
2. Eliminating flawed methods
3. Indicating the length of sessions

(a) The flawless method

The concentration that you will accomplish here has two special features: vivid intensity - an intense mental clarity - and non-discursive stability, staying one-pointedly on the object of meditation. Some add bliss to these, making three features; others add limpidity as well, making four. However, limpidity is included in the first feature, so it does not have to be listed as a separate item. Delight and bliss which impart a sense of well-being do occur as results of the concentration that you will accomplish here, but they are not concomitant with all of the concentrations which are included in the access to the first meditative stabilization. Also, the concentration of the fourth meditative stabilization - which is said to be the best basis for achieving the good qualities of all three vehicles - is not associated with any physical or mental bliss. Thus, delight and bliss are not counted as features here. Concentrations on the formless levels lack highly vivid intensity - there is nothing wrong with presenting vividness as one of these two features. For, Maitreya's Ornament for the Mahayana Sutras refers to 'meditative stabilization other than the formless realm.' This means that bodhisattvas - except for some powerful bodhisattvas - achieve good qualities by relying on concentrations within the levels of meditative stabilization.

Since the development of this sort of vivid intensity is blocked as long as there is laxity, while one-pointed non-discursiveness is blocked as long as there is excitement, laxity and excitement are the chief obstacles to achieving genuine concentration. So if you do not understand how to identify accurately the subtle and coarse forms of laxity and excitement, or if you do not know how to correctly sustain a concentration which stops these once you have identified them, then it will be impossible for you to develop serenity, not to mention insight. Hence, those who diligently seek concentration should master these techniques. Laxity and excitement are conditions unfavorable for achieving serenity. Later, I will discuss how to identify these unfavorable conditions and how to actually stop them. Now I shall explain how to develop concentration in a manner conducive to achieving serenity."

Editor Cutler, Joshua
Coeditor Newland, Guy
Author Tsongkhapa, Je
Translator The Lamrim Chenmo Translation Committee
Book Type Hardcover
Page Count 447 pp.
Publisher Snow Lion Publications 2002
Browse these categories as well: Je Tsongkhapa and the Kadam/Gelug School, Vajrayana and Crazy Wisdom Masters, Termas, Tantras and Sutras, Buddhist Mindfulness Meditation, Noteworthy Releases 2002

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