Vima Nyingtik

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Vima Nyingthig (Tibetan: བི་མ་སྙིང་ཐིག་Wylie: bi ma snying thig), "Seminal Heart of Vimalamitra", is one of the two "seminal heart" (Tibetan: སྙིང་ཐིགWylie: snying thig) collections of the menngagde cycle Dzogchen, the other one being "Seminal Heart of the Dakini" (mkha' 'gro snying thig).[1] Traditionally the teachings are ascribed to Vimalamitra, but they were codified and collated by their Tibetans discoverers in the 11th and 12th century.[2]


The Vima Nyingthig is founded principally on the seventeen tantras and the Troma tantra.[3] It is the teachings both for and of the panditas (Tibetan: རྒྱ་ཆའེ་བWylie: rgya che ba), brought to Tibet by Vimalamitra.[3]


The Vima Nyingtik itself consists of three sections:[4]

  1. tantras (rgyud), which refer to the Seventeen Tantras;
  2. āgamas (lung), which are largely Tibetan syntheses;[2][note 1]
  3. upadēśavargas (man ngag); these refer to 119 treatises of pith advice.

Troma Tantra[edit]

The "Troma Tantra" or the "Ngagsung Tromay Tantra" otherwise known as the "Ekajaṭĭ Khros Ma'i rGyud" focuses on rites of the protector, Ekajati.[8]

Seventeen tantras[edit]

The "Seventeen tantras of the esoteric instruction cycle" (Tibetan: མན་ངག་སྡེའི་རྒྱུད་བཅུ་བདུནWylie: man ngag sde'i rgyud bcu bdun ) which are supports for the Vima Nyingthig are as follows (in no particular order):

  1. "Self-existing Perfection" (Tibetan: རྫོགས་པ་རང་བྱུངWylie: rdzogs pa rang byung)
  2. "Without Letters" (Tibetan: ཡི་གེ་མེད་པWylie: yi ge med pa)
  3. "Self-arising Primordial Awareness" (Tibetan: རིག་པ་རང་ཤརWylie: rig pa rang shar)
  4. "Self-liberated Primordial Awareness" (Tibetan: རིག་པ་རང་གྲོལWylie: rig pa rang grol)
  5. "Piled Gems" (Tibetan: རིན་པོ་ཆེ་སྤུང་བWylie: rin po che spung ba)
  6. "Shining Relics of Enlightened Body" (Tibetan: སྐུ་གདུང་འབར་བWylie: sku gdung 'bar ba)
  7. "Reverberation of Sound" (Tibetan: སྒྲ་ཐལ་འགྱུརWylie: sgra thal 'gyur)
  8. "Great Auspicious Beauty" (Tibetan: བཀྲ་ཤིས་མཛེས་ལྡནWylie: bkra shis mdzes ldan)
  9. "The Mirror of the Heart of Vajrasattva" (Tibetan: རྡོ་རྗེ་སེམས་དཔའ་སྙིང་གི་མེ་ལོངWylie: rdo rje sems dpa' snying gi me long)
  10. "The Mirror of the Mind of Samantabhadra" (Tibetan: ཀུན་ཏུ་བཟང་པོ་ཐུགས་ཀྱི་མེ་ལོངWylie: kun tu bzang po thugs kyi me long)
  11. "Direct Introduction" (Tibetan: ངོ་སྤྲོད་སྤྲས་པWylie: ngo sprod spras pa)
  12. "Necklace of Precious Pearls" (Tibetan: མུ་ཏིག་རིན་པོ་ཆེའི་ཕྲེང་བWylie: mu tig rin po che'i phreng ba)
  13. "Sixfold Expanse of Samantabhadra" (Tibetan: ཀུན་ཏུ་བཟང་པོ་ཀློང་དྲུགWylie: kun tu bzang po klong drug)
  14. "Blazing Lamp" (Tibetan: སྒྲོན་མ་འབར་བWylie: sgron ma 'bar ba)
  15. "Union of the Sun and Moon" (Tibetan: ཉི་ཟླ་ཁ་སྦྱོརWylie: nyi zla kha sbyor)
  16. "Lion's Perfect Expressive Power" (Tibetan: སེང་གེ་རྩལ་རྫོགསWylie: seng ge rtsal rdzogs)
  17. "Array of Jewels" (Tibetan: ནོར་བུ་ཕྲ་བཀོདWylie: nor bu phra bkod)

These seventeen tantras are to be found in the Nyingma Gyubum (Tibetan: རྙིང་མ་རྒྱུད་འབུམWylie: rnying ma rgyud 'bum, "Canon of the Ancient School"), volumes 9 and 10, folio numbers 143–159 of the edition edited by Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche, commonly known as Dilgo Khyentse (Thimpu, Bhutan, 1973), reproduced from the manuscript preserved at Tingkye Gonpa Jang (Tibetan: གཏིང་སྐྱེས་དགོན་པ་བྱངWylie: gting skyes dgon pa byang) Monastery in Tibet.


Rigdzin Kumaradza was a senior disciple of Melong Dorje (1243–1303). Kumaradza studied with the grand master Orgyenpa (1230–1309), who conveyed teachings of "Vimalamitra's Seminal Heart" (Wylie: bi ma snying thig) upon him.

Testaments of the knowledge-holders[edit]

"The Posthumous Teachings of the Vidyadhara" (Tibetan: རིག་འཛིན་གྱི་འདས་རྗེསWylie: rig 'dzin gyi 'das-rjes) are found in the Vima Nyingtik. These are the last testaments of the early vidyadharas: Garab Dorje, Mañjuśrīmitra, Sri Singha and Jnanasutra. These testaments are post-humous as they were delivered by the vidhyadhara to their senior disciple from within a thigle of the Five Pure Lights in their rainbow body. In this tradition, the thigle is understood to be comparable to a pure land or mandala. These were first compiled by Vimalamitra in his five series (which consisted of the series of: Golden Letters, Copper Letters, Variegated Letters, Conch Shell Letters and Turquoise Letters). These posthumous teaching belong to the series of the "Golden Letters" (Tibetan: གསེར་ཡིག་ཅནWylie: gser yig can).

Last testament of Garab Dorje[edit]

"The Three Statement That Strike the Essential Points" or "The Three Vajra Verses" (Tibetan: ཚིག་གསུམ་གནད་དུ་བརྡེག་པWylie: tshig gsum gnad du brdeg pa)

Last testament of Manjushrimitra[edit]

"The Six Meditation Experiences" (Tibetan: སྒོམ་ཉམས་དྲུག་པWylie: sgom nyams drug pa)

Last testament of Śrī Singha[edit]

"The Seven Nails" (Tibetan: གཟེར་བུ་བདུན་པWylie: gzer bu bdun pa)

Last testament of Jñānasūtra[edit]

"The Four Methods of Establishing Absorption" (Tibetan: བཞགས་ཐབས་བཞི་པWylie: bzhags thabs bzhi pa)

Vima Nyingtik: Fourth Volume[edit]

The Eleven Themes[edit]

Scheidegger (2009: p. 43) in a recent work discusses the first four of "The Eleven Themes" (Tibetan: ཚིག་དོན་བཅུ་གཅིག་པWylie: tshig don bcu gcig pa) a work composed by Longchenpa contained in the fourth volume of the Vima Nyingtik.[9]


  1. ^ According to Namkhai Norbu[5] and John Myrdhin Reynolds [6] these agamas were compiled by Vimalamitra (fl. 8th century), and are known as the "five series" (Wylie: sde tshan lnga). They are:
    • the "Golden Letters" (Wylie: gser yig can),
    • the "Turquoise Letters" (Wylie: gyu yig can),
    • the "Copper Letters" (Wylie: zangs yig can),
    • the "Conch Shell Letters" (Wylie: dung yig can)
    • the "Variegated Letters" (Wylie: phra yig can).[7]


  1. ^ Buswell & Lopez 2014.
  2. ^ a b Germano & Gyatso 2001, p. 244.
  3. ^ a b Thondup, Tulku & Harold Talbott (Editor)(1996). Masters of Meditation and Miracles: Lives of the Great Buddhist Masters of India and Tibet. Boston, Massachusetts, USA: Shambhala, South Asia Editions. ISBN 1-57062-113-6 (alk. paper); ISBN 1-56957-134-1, p.33
  4. ^ Rigpa Shedra (August, 2009). "Vima Nyingtik". Source: [1] (accessed: Saturday October 17, 2009)
  5. ^ 1991
  6. ^ 1996: p. 18
  7. ^ Namkhai, Norbu (1991, author) & Vajranatha (1996, translator). "Forward" in Vajranatha (1996). The Golden Letters. First Edition. Ithaca, New York, USA: Snow Lion Publications. ISBN 1-55939-050-6, p.18
  8. ^ Thondup, Tulku & Harold Talbott (Editor)(1996). Masters of Meditation and Miracles: Lives of the Great Buddhist Masters of India and Tibet. Boston, Massachusetts, USA: Shambhala, South Asia Editions. ISBN 1-57062-113-6 (alk. paper); ISBN 1-56957-134-1, p.362
  9. ^ Scheidegger, Daniel (2009). "The First Four Themes of Klong chen pa's Tsig don bcu gcig pa". Achard, Jean-Luke (director) (2009). Revue d'Etudes Tibetaines. April 2009. Source: [2] (accessed: Saturday October 31, 2009)


  • Buswell, Robert; Lopez, Donald S. Jr. (2014), "rdzogs chen (dzokchen)", in Buswell, Robert; Lopez, Donald S. Jr., The Princeton Dictionary of Buddhism, Princetopn University Press 
  • Germano, David; Gyatso, Janet, "Longchenpa and the Possession of the Dakinis", in White, David Gordon, Tantra in Practice, Motilal Banarsidass Publ.