MACHIG LABDRÖN AND THE FOUNDATIONS OF CHÖD
This translation of the most famous biography of Machig Labdrön, founder of the unique Mahamudra Chöd tradition, is presented together with a comprehensive overview of Chöd’s historical and doctrinal origins in Indian Buddhism and its subsequent transmission to Tibet.
Machig Labdrön is popularly considered to be both a d.akini and a deity, an emanation of Yum Chenmo or Prajñaparamita, the embodiment of the wisdom of the buddhas. Historically, this Tibetan woman, a contemporary of Milarepa, was an adept, an outstanding teacher, a mother and the founder of a unique transmission lineage known as the Chöd of Mahamudra.
Chöd refers to cutting through the grasping at a self and its attendant emotional afflictions. Most famous for its teaching on transforming the
aggregates into an offering of food for demons as a compassionate act of self-sacrifice, Chöd aims to free the mind from all fear and to arouse realization of its true nature, primordially clear bliss and emptiness.
“Provides some wonderful material on the Chöd lineage, Machig Labdrön’s biography, and the origins of Mahamudra Chöd. With its publication, we come a little bit closer to feeling the spirit and incisive wisdom of this great yogini.” —Tsultrim Allione, author of Women of Wisdom
“Skillfully balances the historical and hagiographical and deftly expounds [Machig’s] great teaching of the Mahamudra Chöd. Consider reading this book as a spiritual investment.” —Dr. Elizabeth Benard, author of Chinnamasta: The Aweful Buddhist and Hindu Tantric Goddess.
Jérôme Edou has been studying with Khenpo Tsultrim Gyamtso Rinpoche since 1976. He has been an interpreter for various lamas for more than ten years and is an author and translator of works on Tibet and Tibetan Buddhism. He currently lives in Kathmandu.