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A Female Buddha

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yesheWomen can achieve Buddhahood, the story of Yeshe Tsogyal

Yeshe Tsogyal who lived between 757 and 817 was the consort of the great Indian tantric teacher Padmasambhava, the founder-figure of the Nyingma tradition of Tibetan Buddhism.

Nyingma tradition considers her equal in realization to Padmasambhava himself and both the Nyingma and Karma Kagyu schools of Tibetan Buddhism recognize Yeshe Tsogyal as a female Buddha.

The meditational practices related to her stress her enlightened aspect, and are similar in form to tantric deity practices in general. She is sometimes equated with the deities Vajravārāhī, Tārā and Sarasvatī.

The spiritual biography of The Lady Yeshe Tsogyel is an important milestone in Western understanding of the Tantric tradition.

The Lady Yeshe Tsogyel, consort of the Great Guru Padma Sambhava, is the most famous of the enlightened women of Tibet. Sky Dancer (or "Dakini", a mystical term for a female Buddha) is one of the rare works of Tibetan literature to document a woman's spiritual practises and development.  It is also for the insights it offers into Tibetan history, shedding new light on the kings and empire.

Listen, O brothers and sisters, you who have mastered the teaching --
if you recognise me, Queen of the lake of awareness,
who encompasses both emptiness and form,
know that I live in the minds of all beings who live.

Know that I live in the body of mind and the feel of the senses;
that the twelve kinds of matter are only my bones and skin.

We are not two, yet you look for me outside;
when you find me within yourself,
your own naked mind, that single awareness will fill all worlds.

When the joy of the one will hold you like a lake --
it's fish with gold seeking our eyes will grow many and fat.

Hold to that knowledge and pleasure, you and the creative will be your wings.
You will leap through the green meadows of earthly appearance, enter the sky fields and vanish.

Yeshe Tsogyel's place in Tibetan society gave her great influence and secured an eminent position for all her followers. The meditations she practised and the spiritual growth she attained, along with her instructions to her disciples are chartered in this unique work,  are as relevant today as they ever were.  Written in the ninth centuary and rediscovered in the seventeenth,  Sky Dancer is admired for it's lyrical beauty and its profound message.

Sky Dancer, The Secret Life and Songs of The Lady Tsogyel by Keith Dowman (An English translation).

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