In this classic seventeenth-century presentation of the union of Mahamudra and Dzogchen, Karma Chagmé, one of the great teachers of both these lineages of Tibetan Buddhism, begins with an overview of the spirit of awakening and the nature of actions and their ethical consequences. Next, drawing from his enormous erudition and profound experience, Chagmé gives exceptionally lucid instructions on the two phases of Dzogchen practice—the “breakthrough” and the “leap-over”—followed by an accessible introduction to the practice of the transference of consciousness at the time of death. The concluding chapters of this treatise present a detailed analysis of Mahamudra meditation in relation to Dzogchen practice. This tour de force of scholarly erudition and contemplative insight is made all the more accessible by the lively commentary of the contemporary Nyingma Lama Gyatrul Rinpoche.
Although this book stands alone, it is the concluding section of a single body of teachings by Karma Chagmé, the earlier section published under the title A Spacious Path to Freedom. Karma Chagmé was a major teacher of the Karma Kagyu tradition of Tibetan Buddhism, and his writings have also become central to the Payul Nyingma order, making him an ideal figure to integrate these two great meditation systems.