Rinpoche’s Books

Karma. What It Is, What It Isn’t, Why It Matters

Karma What It Is, What It Isn't, Why It Matters

Shambhala Publications
160 pages
5.5″ by 8.5″
ISBN: 9781590308882


Pre-orders for Karma now available on the Shambala website.

Ocean of Certainty

The Ninth Karmapa Wangchuk Dorje,
Commentary by Traleg Kyabgon Rinpoche

Ocean of Certainty

KTD Publications
176 pages
5.5″ by 8.5″
ISBN: 9781934608203


Traleg Kyabgon Rinpoche’s commentary to the sixteenth century work Pith Instructions of Coemergent Wisdom, Entitled the Profound Essence of the Ocean of Certainty, by the Ninth Karmapa, Wangchuk Dorje, provides meditators with an overview of the path leading to the realization of mahamudra, the self-liberated and all-encompassing nature of reality. Beginning with ngondro practice, Traleg Rinpoche guides students through the conditions needed to integrate fully the practice, along with instructions for shamatha and vipashyana meditation, which includes visualizations and exercises. A section devoted to strengthening practice lays out common pitfalls, wrong views and the way to avoid them. Finally, Rinpoche teaches on the four yogas of mahamudra one-pointedness non-conceptuality, one-flavoredness, and non-meditation and the ground, path, and fruition of mahamudra in relation to the individual practitioner.

Four Dharmas of Gampopa

Four Dharmas of GampopaPaperback
KTD Publications
193 pages
5.5″ by 8.5″
ISBN: 9781934608357

May my mind become one with the Dharma
May the Dharma make success on the path
May the path clarify confusion
May confusion dawn as wisdom

Gampopa’s Four Dharmas is closely related to his Jewel Ornament of Liberation, a text that deals with the stages in our spiritual development. First you begin to discover the Dharma, then you make a good job of it, then the Dharma becomes applicable on the path so you begin to clarify confusion on the path, and finally you transmute that confusion into wisdom. Those are the four Dharmas and they really relate to the development of the individual on the path
—–Traleg Kyabgon

The Influence of Yogacara on Mahamudra

KTD Publications
152 pages
5.5″ by 8.5″
ISBN 978-1-934608-19-7

Traleg Rinpoche presents a clear and detailed introduction to Yogacara philosophy and its relationship to Buddhist Tantra, specifically the Mahamudra system of practice. Mahamudra belongs to the highest level of Tantra and inherited many ideas that were developed by the early Yogacarin practitioners. Rinpoche examines the Yogacarin notion of transformation, where our unhealthy psychological states get transmuted into higher states, the three levels of consciousness, the three aspects of reality, the concept of Buddha nature, the positive presentation of emptiness, and the goal of nonduality where we begin to recognize how our minds create both samsara and nirvana.
He then goes on to define Mahamudra in relation to its four characteristics, how Mahamudra views the transformation of consciousness into wisdom, the Mahamudra notions of buddha nature, mind-as-such, ‘ever-perfect emptiness,’ and absolute reality. People have generally ignored how Yogacara philosophy influenced Buddhist tantra and its development. While it is not discussed explicitly, it is quite patent in the writings of Buddhist tantra. For example, transforming our neuroses and emotional instabilities is a very tantric concept, but we can trace that idea back to the original Yogacarin writings.

The Practice of Lojong

The practice of LojongPaperback original
Shambhala Publications
320 pages
6″ by 9″
ISBN 1-59030-378-4

This book presents commentary, stories, and historical background on the lojong slogans of Tibetan Buddhism. Used by meditators through the ages to cultivate awareness and compassion, this contemplation practice offers guidance for remaining receptive and wakeful amid the ups and downs of daily life. These meditations have long been considered the quintessence of Buddhist teachings for cultivating an awakened heart and a compassionate mind.Traleg Kyabgon, a revered contemporary Tibetan master, offers practical and thorough explanations of each of the fifty-nine lojong slogans, including:
• Don’t wait in ambush.
• Always maintain a cheerful outlook.
• Don’t attack others’ vulnerable points.The Practice of Lojong will be of interest to all those who want to explore how Buddhist teachings can help us find clarity and balance in daily life, and it will deepen the understanding of those who have read other popular books on lojong, such as Start Where You Are by Pema Chödrön and Training the Mind and Cultivating Loving Kindness by Chögyam Trungpa.

The Essence of Buddhism

essencePaperback original
Shambhala Dragon Editions
208 pages
6″ by 9″
ISBN 1-57062-468-2

This lucid overview of the Buddhist path takes the perspective of the three “vehicles” of Tibetan Buddhism: the Hinayana, Mahayana, and Vajrayana. While these vehicles are usually presented as a historical development, they are here equated with the attitudes that individuals bring to their Buddhist practice. Basic to them all, however, is the need to understand our own immediate condition. The primary tool for achieving this is meditation, and The Essence of Buddhism serves as a handbook for the various meditative approaches of Buddhist practice.Beginning with the Four Noble Truths, Traleg Rinpoche incorporates the expansive vision of the bodhisattva path and the transformative vision of Tantra. The final chapters present the transcendent view of Mahamudra. This view dispenses with all dualistic fixations and directly realizes the natural freedom of the mind itself.Along the way, the author provides vivid definitions of fundamental concepts such as compassion, emptiness, and Buddha-nature, and answers common questions: Why does Buddhism teach that there is “no self”? Are Buddhist teachings pessimistic? Does Buddhism encourage social passivity? What is the role of sex in Buddhist Tantra? Why is it said that “samsara is nirvana”? Does it take countless lifetimes to attain enlightenment, or can it be achieved in a moment?

Mind at Ease

mind at easeForeword by Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche

Paperback original
Shambhala Publications
240 pages
6″ by 9″
ISBN 1-59030-156-0

“Traleg Kyabgon is exceptionally learned and has undergone extensive training in both Buddhist studies and contemporary mind sciences. His work will bring tremendous benefit to all spiritual seekers in the West.”

Khenchen Thrangu, author of An Ocean of the Ultimate Meaning and tutor to Karmapa XVII

In this uniquely insightful overview and practice guide, Traleg Kyabgon presents a thorough introduction to the Kagyu lineage’s Mahamudra tradition. The author’s approach is straightforward—he presents the Mahamudra teachings as a means of seeing things in, as he says, “a positive and open light. Even things we might normally regard as bad and undesirable can be interpreted in a more uplifting way due to the expansiveness of the Mahamudra vision.” Mahamudra—which means “great seal” or “great symbol,” referring to the symbol or mark of ultimate reality, or emptiness—points to the true nature of mind as well as the ultimate insubstantiality of all things.

The book includes an exploration of Mahamudra fundamentals and thorough explanations of Ground, Path, and Fruition Mahamudra, including meditation techniques for investigating, experiencing, and contemplating these teachings.

Read Ken Wilber’s comment on Mind at Ease, from Integral Spirituality, p. 108-115.

Nyima Tashi


The Songs and Instructions of
the First Traleg Kyabgon Rinpoche
Translated by Yeshe Gyamtso

KTD Publications
176 pages
5.8″ by 8.8 ”
ISBN 0974109282

Gampopa, the peerless physician from Dakpo, who was repeatedly predicted and praised by the Buddha, caused the teachings of the lineage of accomplishment to become widespread in the Himalayan land of Tibet. All his disciples gave rise to the sudden realization of Mahamudra. Among them were five hundred great meditators, of whom the greatest and most famous were the three Khampas.One of these three was the Khampa Saltong Shogom, who achieved the greatest mastery of the channels and winds through the practice of chandali. His rebirth was Nyima Tashi the Birth-Recollector, who devoted his life to silent practice in sealed retreat. He saw the faces of yidams, realized Mahamudra,and thereafter recounted his previous births and prophesied his future ones. He sang vajra songs that are still warm with his blessing.

This brief account of his recollections, prophecies of future births, and songs has now been translated into English and published. It is certain that disciples who study it will plant the seed of liberation in their continuums. I therefore rejoice in and am grateful for its publication. Includes Tibetan text.

The Ninth Traleg Kyabgon Rinpoche

The Benevolent Mind

benevolentA Manual in Mind Training

Paperback original
Zhyisil Chokyi Ghatsal Trust Publications New Zealand
250 pages
5.5″ by 8 ”
ISBN 1877294284

There are many different kinds of instructions, practices and philosophies in Buddhism. These are condensed in spiritual instructions representing the essence of the Buddha’s teachings. But practices such as Lojong are the quintessence – the essence of the essence – of the Buddha’s teachings.The most popular and widely used source text explaining Lojong, or mind training is The Seven Points of Mind Training. Originally transmitted in the Kadampa tradition this text has now long been assimilated by all the Tibetan Buddhist schools.The heart and focus of Lojong practice is the cultivation of bodhichitta or enlightened heart, the realization of our Buddha essence through the cultivation of a compassionate mind.Presented here is a clear and practical means to understand and implement these techniques in a line-by-line commentary by one of the most respected contemporary Kagyu masters, Traleg Kyabgon Rinpoche.


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