Sakya Yojimbo - Tsarchen Losal Gyatso

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Sakya Yojimbo - Tsarchen Losal Gyatso

Postby kirtu » Mon Dec 10, 2012 5:55 am

With such a title -"Song of the Road: The Poetic Travel Journal of Tsarchen Losal Gyatso " by Cryus Stearns, I couldn't resist. To me the title evokes Yojimbo, the beloved rascal created by Toshiro Mifune who could be seen as a kind of hidden bodhisattva, in the grandest sense. The excepts read more like Shabkar. Stearns has apparently hit another home run!

Here's an except from Amazon:
So. We began to travel at the pace of mendicants. During the fifth moon of the Pig Year the fresh grass had changed the landscape to a gentle green as if anointed with new emeralds. All the rivers and streams were fully swollen, like a sea of sapphires suddenly welling up, beautiful with garlands of waves whose white foamy smiles laughed in a hundred directions. It was time for the good festival of spring, so people were acting quite joyful and passionate, moving about with ballads and sounds of laughter filling by turns all the mountains and valleys.
With the messengers of invitation, there were about fifteen of us, teacher and students all in the prime of life, not too old or too young, wearing only the saffron victory banner of dress befitting ordained persons. Symbolizing emphatic, deliberate renunciation, we each carried a little tent of white cotton, like the shattered shard of a glacial mountain; a white rattan staff, like a tent pole of conch shell; a small meditation cushion; a square rug with untrimmed edges; a pouch and a three-cornered sack, as if woven of rubies and lotus roots; and a special volume of the profound oral transmission, with which to grace fortunate people. My pace on foot would have been too slow, so I rode a dependable fine gray horse that could handle the usual saddle, bridle, and so on. In keeping with the large summer cloak the Sage allowed, for protection from the rain we wore cloaks of whole serge seemingly bordered with lapis lazuli.
We set out from Tupten Gepel Monastery in Mangkar and rested a little at my family home. In the assembly hall of the palace of Namgyal Taktsé in upper Dar we completed the consecration of a stupa and held a celebration. Our gradual departure was like this:

The exquisite beauty
of the glorious swan king,
avian lord surrounded by ten
million ruddy sheldrakes,
departing from the shore
of a great enchanting lake,
is like the sky laced with red
dust of vermilion.

So, too, for the great benefit
of the doctrine and living beings,
a mendicant yogin swiftly departed
with a circle of saffron-clad students,
setting off for the wide herbal lands
in the region of Ü.

Seeing him, fortunate
young people expressed
various hopes and wishes,
thinking, “May I also be guided
in the footsteps of one like this,
whose way is happy in this life
and will be pleasant in the next."
Kirt's Tibetan Translation Notes

"Only you can make your mind beautiful."
HH Chetsang Rinpoche
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kirtu
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Re: Sakya Yojimbo - Tsarchen Losal Gyatso

Postby kirtu » Sun Jun 09, 2013 9:47 pm

Actually, this really IS a Sakya Yojimbo tale except without the swords (swords do actually make an appearance but not in the hands of Tsarchen Losal Gyatso). And Tsarchen is free with his thoughts showing us that politics played a role in Tibetan Buddhism even in the late Spring of 1539. Unfortunately the travel journal ends abruptly on exactly this note. Thankfully Stearns is translating other Tsarchen texts. This is quite a short read. Stearns estimates that the journal covers only the first month or two of a two year pilgrimage. The text relates three visions: two of Vajrayogini (one of which occured before the journal begins when Tsarchen is a bit older than 17) and one vision of a protector goddess (so only two visions during the journey itself although others are also mentioned). When these occur Tsarchen is not entirely sure of what is happening himself. The Kindle edition is excellent. The text is Tibetan followed by the English translation.

Kirt
Kirt's Tibetan Translation Notes

"Only you can make your mind beautiful."
HH Chetsang Rinpoche
User avatar
kirtu
Former staff member
 
Posts: 4497
Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2010 5:29 pm
Location: Baltimore, MD


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