Tsangyang Gyatso, 6th Dalai Lama

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Tsangyang Gyatso, 6th Dalai Lama

Tsangyang Gyatso (1 March 168315 November 1706) was the sixth Dalai Lama. He was a Monpa by ethnicity and was born at Urgelling Monastery, 5km from Tawang Town, India and not far from the large Tawang Monestary in the northwestern part of present-day Arunachal Pradesh.

He had grown up a youth of high intelligence, liberal to a fault, fond of pleasure, alcohol and women, and later led a playboy lifestyle. He disappeared near Qinghai, probably murdered, on his way to Beijing in 1706. The 6th Dalai Lama composed poems and songs that are not only still immensely popular in modern-day Tibet but have also gained significant popularity all across China.


Poems of Sadness: The Erotic Verse of the Sixth Dalai Lama Tsangyang Gyatso tr. Paul Williams 2004 [edit]

  • Even the stars can be measured,
Their arrangements and influences.
Her body can be lovingly touched,
but not her deep longings.
Those cannot be understood
by science.
  • p 12
  • Lassoes can catch the wild horses
that flee over the hills.
But nothing, not even incantations
can hold a wild beloved
who has stopped loving
her lover.
  • p.13
  • The ink of lovesongs
washes off in the rain,
but the love itself,
that which cannot be
written down, stays
inside *here*
  • p.16
  • I listen intently
to what my teacher says
but beneath that concentration
my loving slips
out of the room
to be with you.
  • p.20
  • In meditation, the face of my teacher
does not come to me very clearly,
but your face does, smiling one way,
then smiling another.
  • p.21
  • If I could meditate as deeply
on the sacred texts as I do
on you, I would clearly be
enlightened in this lifetime.
  • p.22
  • It was snowing at nightfall
when i went out to look for my lover.
Now the secret of where my feet went
is openly visible to everyone.
  • p.26
  • Lover waiting in my bed
to give me your soft, sweet body,
do you mean me well?
What will you take off me,
Besides my clothes?
  • p.27
  • Wanting this landlord's daughter
is wanting the topmost
  • p.37
  • Back when I was lucky,
I could hoist a prayerflag,
and some well-bred young woman
would invite me home.
  • p.44
  • I often see my lost lover in dreams.
I will ask a shaman to search in there
and bring her back to me.
  • p.52
  • Oracle of the Tenth Stage,
Dorje Chokyang, if you have power,
destroy those who hate the natural law.
  • p.58
  • My lover and I, we meet in complete
privacy, in the southern valley forest.
Then I hear some parrot in the market
jabbering our secrets.
  • p.61
  • We've had our short walk together,
this joy. Let's hope we meet early
in the next life, as young lovers.
  • p.62
  • While I live in the monastery palace,
I am Ridzin Tsangyang Gyatso,
honored in this lineage.
When I roam the streets in Lhasa,
and down in the valley to Shol,
I am the wildman, Dangyang Wangpo,
who has many lovers.
  • p.64
  • Pure snow-water from the holy mountain,
Dew off the rare Naga Vajra grass.
These essences make a nectar
which is fermented by one
who is incarnated as a maiden.
Her cup's contents can protect you
from rebirth in a lower form,
if it is tasted in the state
of awareness it deserves.
  • p.70
  • I know her body's softness
but not her love.
I draw figures in sand
to measure great distances
through the sky.
  • p.72

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