The Jonangpa Blog

Kalachakra Practice I

In preparation for the upcoming Kālachakra retreat, I thought to revisit some of the central themes on Jonang Kālachakra practice that have inspired many of my conversations with friends and inquirers on the subject. Though much of this can be found in my outline of the practice curriculum, it may be helpful to discuss this again here. [1]

To begin, its important to distinguish what are "ngöndro" ( sngon 'gro ) or the preliminary practices in the Jonang Kalachakra practice tradition, and what are "ngözhi" ( dngos gzhi ) or the primary practices. Although this is a division that is found among the Tibetan tantric traditions...

The First Jonangpa

Throughout my readings on the Jonangpa in English, I've noticed the (all too) common attribution of either Yumo Mikyo Dorje or Dolpopa Sherab Gyaltsen as the "founder" of the Jonang tradition. [1] Though Yumowa was a major figure in the transmission of the Drö Kālachakra lineage as it was received by the Jonangpa, and was a prominent forefather of the tradition, its unlikely that he even heard the word "Jonangpa" in his lifetime.

jf_kunpangpa_1.jpg Kunpangpa

The term was coined during the time of Kungpang Thukjé Tsöndru (1243-1313), [2] the master who later inherited the Drö Kālachakra lineage as it was transmitted through Yumowa, and the first in the lineage to settle in the valley named " Jomonang ." He was the 1st Jonangpa.

Tibetan History: A Snippet

To inaugurate this Jonangpa blog, I thought it might be helpful to provide historical context for some of the socio-cultural and religious forces that eventually led to the founding of the Jonang as a distinct tradition of Buddhism in Tibet. What follows is an abbreviated outline of the early history of Tibetan Buddhism , highlighting some of the major figures and events that preceded the commencement of the Jonangpa.

A Chronology of Tibetan Buddhism [1]

c. 779 Emperor Tri Song Detsen establishes Samye, the first major monastery in South Central Tibet, beginning the "early dissemination" ( snga dar ) of the Buddha's teachings in Tibet and what later becomes referred to as Nyingma or "Ancient" tradition; Tibetan empire reigns Dunhuang in northern China; the Chinese Chan master Moheyan and the Indian philosopher Kamalashila are invited to debate at Samye Monastery in order to resolve the tensions between which system of Buddhism to adopt in Tibet

Kalachakra Texts

Paltseg Kalachakra Commentary Series

jf_mchan_2.JPG View of Volume Covers

Paltseg Publications has recently released reproductions of important commentaries on the Kalachakra Tantra . This 7 volume set includes (a) Dolpopa Sherab Gyaltsen's , (b) Chogle Namgyal's , (c) and the Zhalu master Buton Rinchen Drup's annotated commentaries ( mchan 'grel ) on the Vimalaprabha , along with (d) Kunpang Thukje Tsondru's essential commentary ( snying 'grel ) on the root Kalachakra Tantra.

Publication Series

Jonang Publication Series

jf_theg mchog_pub.jpg Cover of Book in Jonang Publication Series

The first set in the Jonang Publication Series ( Jo nang dpe tshogs ) is now available for purchase from Jonang Foundation. This annual series of select Tibetan Buddhist philosophical classics features important works by major Jonang authors from all genres of sutra and tantra. Each work in this ongoing series is chosen from the corpus of Jonang literature to reflect the contemporary scholastic curriculum within Jonang monastic universities inside Tibet.

Jonang Thangkas

jf_dolpopa_thangka_1.jpg Kunkhyen Dolpopa Thangka

Jonang Foundation is pleased to announce its collection of thangkas for purchase. Representing the major deities and lineage figures of the Jonang tradition, each thangka in our collection was selected and digitally reprinted from the greater corpus of Jonang lineage art.

Thangkas now available for purchase include:

Jonang Kalachakra Deity Dolpopa with Disciples Taranatha with Previous Lives

To view and purchase these fine Tibetan thangkas, visit the Jonang Thangkas page in JF's...

Intro. to the Jonang

We invite you to read our concise Introduction to the Jonang .

This one page description overviews the Jonang tradition of zhentong and the Kalachakra Tantra , giving you a summary of this distinctive tradition and its place in the wider world of Tibetan Buddhism.

Appeal for Support

We at Jonang Foundation invite you to read, "Every Drop Helps": Our Appeal for Support .

Jonang Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation. Our work is supported entirely by the generous financial contributions made by private benefactors and by grants awarded through non-profit charitable organizations.

History of the Jonang

A Brief History of the Jonang Tradition

This essay is a condensed chronological history of the Jonang Tibetan Buddhist tradition from its ancestors in India, up through its 17th century persecution in central Tibet, and on through the Jonangpa transmigration to the Amdo cultural region of northeastern Tibet, where they presently reside.

JF Newsletter #2: Winter '08

ver the past few months, we've been very active at Jonang Foundation. In this 2nd edition of the JF Newsletter, we bring you the news and highlight some of our latest activities.

From early December through the end of January, we conducted our 1st teaching tour through Europe where Khenpo Kunga Sherab Rinpoche performed the Kalachakra empowerment from the Jonang transmission lineage, several condensed empowerments, and taught on zhentong in Italy. The Kalachakra empowerment and teaching retreat were translated into Italian by Valeria Donati, and into English by myself. Tulku Kunga Zangpo also made the trip to the French Alps where he was invited to teach. We would like to thank our friends and hosts throughout Italy and France for their hospitality, and we look forward to deepening our relationships with all of you in the coming years.