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The Essence of Tsongkhapa's Teachings

The Dalai Lama on the Three Principal Aspects of the Path

Edited by Jeremy Russell / Translated by Lhakdor

Learn from the Dalai Lama how to put into practice your understanding of renunciation, the awakening mind, and emptiness.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s commentary on Tsongkhapa’s Three Principal Aspects of the Path helps us integrate the full Buddhist path into our own practice. His Holiness offers a beautiful elucidation of the three aspects of the path: true renunciation and the wish for freedom, the altruistic awakening mind (bodhichitta), and the correct view of emptiness. These three aspects of the path are the foundation of all the sutric and tantric practices, and encapsulate Tsongkhapa’s vision of the Buddhist path in its entirety.

Practitioners will find The Three Principal Aspects of the Path invaluable as a manual for daily meditation. The universal and timeless insights of this text speak to contemporary spiritual aspirants, East and West. The root verses are presented in both Tibetan and fluid English translation to accompany these profound teachings.

When I first studied Jé Tsongkhapa’s root text on the Three Principal Aspects of the Path several decades ago, I recognized I had encountered the essence of all the Mahayana teachings of the Buddha, and the indispensable foundation of the Vajrayana. I knew that I could entrust myself to these three principles in all my lifetimes until enlightenment, and my faith in them has only deepened during the ensuing years. In this precious volume, His Holiness the Dalai Lama has brought his vast erudition and profound insights to elucidating this text for the modern world, for which I offer my humble gratitude and joyful appreciation.


– —B. Alan Wallace, President, Santa Barbara Institute for Consciousness Studies

I teach my students about bodhisattva practice in terms of the three main aspects of the path: determination to be free, bodhicitta, and correct view. I am thrilled to see that we now have Tsongkhapa's pithy and profound verses on this topic along with the Dalai Lama's lucid commentary. This is a short, readable book––and a great introduction to Mahayana practice. It includes Tsongkhapa's original text in Tibetan, so it could also be used quite effectively as a text for teaching the translation of classical Tibetan. 


– —Guy Newland, Chair, Department of Philosophy and Religion, Central Michigan University

More books from this author: Dalai Lama