The Condensed Chronicle by Orgyan Padma
Padmasambhava's autobiography translated by Tony Duff
|Title||The Condensed Chronicle by Orgyan Padma|
|Author||Translation and introduction by Tony Duff|
|Details||38 pages, 1 colour plate, 5.5" X 8.5", US$15, available on paper and in PDF e-book format|
|ISBN||paper book 978-9937-824-40-8, e-book 978-9937-572-18-7|
|Texts||Tibetan texts in Tibetan script not included|
Padmasambhava himself gave two verbal accounts of his life and who he was. One is a very long exposition, known simply as the Chronicles of Padma. The other is a much shorter version of the same, known as The Condensed Chronicle by Orgyab Padma.
The condensed version was told by Padmasambhava as a story to King Mutri Tsanpo, son of King Trisong Deutsen, at the King’s request. Padmasambhava recounts in his unique style who he is, his life story, practices, and accomplishments. Then, at a further request of the king, Padmasambhava makes many predictions into the far future. The predictions are interesting because many of them are about past events and every prediction can be seen to have been exactly correct. Padmasambhava commanded that his story should be recorded and hidden as treasure. That was done and the record of it was revealed much later on; the details are also included in the text.
The book is a translation of the text with introduction and some notes as necessary to clarify certain parts of the text. The events around the work of translation were quite interesting. The work was done during a major set of empowerments given at Zhechen monastery in 2005. Zhadeu Thrulzhig Rinpoche, who was giving the empowerments, introduced the reading of the entire text as part of the daily prayers for the entire assembly. He explained that reading it out loud once a day or even once a month, etcetera, had profound power to avert obstacles and problems and bring auspiciousness. At the time there was no translation in English and the large Western contingent was unable to do the practice. Therefore, I did the translation the next day, printed it, and offered it to the Westerners who were pleased to be able to join in. On its presentation, Thrulzhig Rinpoche was especially pleased, and there were unusual signs in the environment that showed the dakinis likewise were very pleased!
Download Tibetan text in TibetD format: • available here. Note that the electronic edition is not the same as the one used for the translation. The one used for the translation is from the original revealed treasure, the one provided here had been incorporated in the New Termas of Chogling and was extracted from that. There are slight differences between the two editions; the original edition is slightly better.