Machig's Struggle with Self-Doubt

"When we look at Machig’s life we see her self-doubt balanced by an underlying sense of destiny. She was at once very human, struggling with questions about whether to give up her spiritual vows and enter a relationship, and at the same…
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The Secret Power of the Dakini

"In her most subtle, essential form, Yeshe Tsogyal is called 'expanse of mahasukha Kuntusangmo [Samantabhadri], the all-good queen.' This deity is called the primordial Mother Buddha, source of all enlightenment. She is the consort and female…

The Meaning of Green Tara's Color

 “Green Tara’s color symbolizes activity and success. Although she possesses the same qualities as other manifestations of the omniscient ones, she specifically embodies the enlightening influence by which the Buddhas act to benefit…
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Lama Tsultrim Allione on Faith

  "I saw that faith is a powerful form of relaxation, and this turned out to be one of the most powerful realizations of the pilgrimage for me. Faith is taking things one step at a time, relaxing, trusting. It is moment-to-moment opening…
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The Horrific Appearance of the Dakini

"Not all dakinis appear in young and beautiful form; in horrific form they have the power to open the practitioner's mind in a direct way. This is how the karma dakini appears in 'destroying' mode, removing particularly intractable obstacles…
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"Some Said I Was A Dakini"

“I always think I am not a dakini. I don’t know who I am. Some lamas say I am Khandro Yeshe Tsogyal, some say I am Vajrayogini, and others say I am Tara. It might be their own pure appearances. I myself think I am nothing special. When…
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Mandarava Tames Charnel Ground Beings

"Because the wisdom dakini is native to the charnel ground, she has special powers to tame the raw and terrifying spirits who dwell there. Princess Mandarava was especially known for her abilities to tame the charnel ground beings. In her…
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Do Not Be Discouraged

  When Tara appeared to Machig Labdron while she was in retreat in a cave at the age of forty-one, the yogini said to Tara: "You have been very kind to me and have given me power. I am just a weak, stupid woman, but now I have become…
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Whatever We Can Do...

  "Whatever we can do to serve others, at any moment, in any situation, is the practice of bodhi, or awakening. Service awakens in us a natural generosity, not a calculated response that weighs the pros and cons and decides whether it's…
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Recognizing the Wisdom Dakini

"As we have seen, it is often difficult to recognize the wisdom dakini. She may appear in the form of a human woman or take the visionary form of a worldly demoness dakini. Because of the ambiguity of her appearance, which is a central part…
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There Are Male & Female Buddhas

"There are male and female Buddhas just as there are male and female people. There are many female Buddhas, not just Tara and Vajrayogini; there are so many female deities! For some people it is much easier to practice female deities. It depends…
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Yogini Encounters with Dakinis

"If being a woman is an inspiration, use it. If it is an obstacle, try not to be bothered." ~ Khandro Rinpoche  Lama Tsultrim Allione writes in the "Preface" to Women of Wisdom, her landmark collection of the stories of Tibetan yoginis,…
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With Her Kartari ...

"As a wisdom dakini, Vajrayogini carries a hooked knife [kartari (sanskrit), triguk (tibetan)] known as the hook of mercy, the weapon of nonthought that cuts the deceptions of self-cherishing. Nonthought [togme] is the most basic expression…
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A Bodhisattva Is Someone ...

"A bodhisattva is someone whose process of awakening comes about through the process of serving others yet knows that this world is dynamic and unresolvable. Resting in this paradox is bodhicitta or awakened mind." ~ Elizabeth Mattis…
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Cutting Through To The Groundless Ground

Cutting through to the groundless ground, drinking the nectar of the deathless discovered at the heart of life and death. Vajrayogini, reveal your face to all those shaken to their very ground!