Drukpa Kunley 1455

Drukpa Kunley & The Devoted Old Man 1455

One of the biographies starts like this: Drukpa Kunley was surrounded by many female consorts in a cave singing and indulging. A female consort Anay Anandara expressed, "Oh, Drukpa Kunley, you are a manifestation of Buddha. In my perception, you hold greater significance than Milarepa. Kindly grant us the disciples whose physical body is connected to you, with teachings."


The Highest, The Greatest, and the Deepest.

Drukpa Kunley: Buddha's blessing is the highest. Diety Yidam's power is the greatest, and the Ex monk's lust is the deepest. After imparting some more teachings, he announced his departure to Samye and stated that if karmic connections existed, they would meet again shortly. With that, he bid his farewell and left.


I require nothing, and I desire nothing.

As he traveled, he wore a magnificent coat given to him by a female follower. While walking through a busy market street, he loudly declared, "I require nothing, I desire nothing," and repeated this statement. One of the thieves overheard and asked, "If you don't need anything, could you give me that wonderful coat?" He replied, "Even a beggar would not find use for this coat," causing everyone on the street to burst out laughing.



Drukpa Kunley's Biography


1. Introduction of Drukpa Kunley

Drukpa Kunley, a prominent Tibetan Yogi, holds significant spiritual influence comparable to the 84 Maha Siddhas. Drukpa Kunley came into our world between the years (1455–and 1529) in the Shigatse Tsang area in a village, namely Kyishoe. His father's name was Nangso Rinchen Sangpo, and his mother's was Ponmo Gonmokyi.


He was one of the finest Yogis from Drukpa Kagyu's school. Even though he was from Drukpa Kagyu school, he was one of the only masters during that time who focused on the non-sectarian movement and spread the skylike compassion and wisdom of Buddha to all the schools of Buddhism in Tibet.


He went by Tsewang Gyalpo as a child and was known for his wisdom. Tragedy struck when he was just thirteen years old, as his father was assassinated and his mother passed away, leaving him orphaned. Fortunately, his aunt's husband helped him secure a job as an attendant for Rinpungpa, where he worked for six years. He then journeyed to central Tibet, receiving generous gifts from Rinpungpa Kuntu Sangpo, including amber beads, precious jades, and a horse. He gave the jade to his elder sister and the horse to one of Rinpungpa's attendants and wandered everywhere.


2. Taking Monastic Vows

Upon wandering, Druk Ralung Rinpoche advised him to reside at Ralung Monastery, where he spent approximately eight months learning and implementing the teachings. During his stay, he encountered the highly accomplished Yogi Tokden Latsunpa and was bestowed with numerous precious teachings from him.


He then journeyed to Tsang Rongdrak Choeding monastery, where he was instructed in Mahamudra by Geelong Sonam Chokden. He dedicated six months to practicing these teachings and received teachings on Dzogchen from Lama Sonam Sangpo. Following this, he proceeded to the Nening monastery, where he took the monastic vows and was given the spiritual name Kunga Lekpay Paljor Sangpo. He attained full ordination as a monk from the Shalu Kenrap.


3. Hearing and Learning teachings

He received many teachings from the two masters mentioned above. He then journeyed to the Kongpo Nyingchi region, where he encountered the 7th Gyalwang Karmapa, received Tantra teachings, and achieved significant spiritual realization. Additionally, he obtained teachings from Taklungpa, Drampa Kachupa, Tokden Latsunpa, and Sangpo. He became a great, realized, enlightened being.


4. Dharma Practice 

In his travels, he arrived at the Monyul region and constructed the Sip Temple, where he ordained approximately 30 Monpa individuals as monks.

Drukpa Kunley

After the passing of my father, Rinchen Sangpo, and mother, Gonmokyi, the desire for a worldly life is no more. Instead, he felt a deep sadness for the cycle of rebirth Samsara and entirely let go of any samsaric thoughts.

Wherever I wander, May the Drukpa protectors protect me!

He traveled through central, western, and eastern Tibet, Lhasa, Shigatse, Nyingchi, Monyul, Bhutan, and various places of retreat, engaging in exceptional spiritual practices.


He occasionally dressed in homeowner, man, woman, bagger, and hunter roles.

Many believed him to be a highly realized Yogi and were devoted to him, while others viewed him as a lunatic crazy and criticized him.

Later, he had a consort named TsewangZom and had a son named Shingkong Drukdra. Despite being offered land by a Governor, he continued his path as a wandering Yogi throughout Tibet.


5. Negate Non-Dharmic deeds

As he wandered through various places, he witnessed some individuals who claimed to be reincarnated Lamas, Geshes, and Ngakpa Yogis selling teachings of the Dharma for personal wealth, engaging in actions that contradicted the principles of the Dharma. Witnessing such non-dharmic behavior left him feeling saddened, leading him to abandon all worldly actions completely. In his teachings, hardship practitioners are rare, negating non-dharmic practitioners everywhere.


Named as a spiritual person and doing worldly deeds.

Named Lama and became the worldly leader.

What's the point of leaving your hometown when you still haven't let go of your attachment?


6. Spiritual Attainments

Drukpa Kunley has shown many spiritual attainments with deeds that are very hard for ordinary people to digest. Once he pissed on an older man's Thangka; the older man was crying, but later he saw a golden color on the Thangka area where he had pissed.


7. The Three Tightness

The rich people's fists are tight. The older people's brains are tight; the nun's body parts are tight.

Vajra Yogini By Dakinis Arts

Image: Yogini by Dakinis Art


8. The meeting of Three Crazy Wisdom Masters 

Once, the three most influential Tibetan crazy wisdom masters met, including U Nyon, the crazy wisdom master from U, and Tsang Nyon Heruka, the crazy wisdom master from Tsang (a great Yogi), who wrote the biography of great Milarepa. One of the masters left footprints on a stone, while another left a handprint on a stone. They asked Drukpa Kunley what blessings he would give to future devotees. Drukpa Kunley, who used to wander with his dog, placed the dog's hand on a stone, leaving a handprint of the dog on the stone.


8. The Devoted Old Man & The Powerful Vulgar Mantra

Once, an older man requested teaching, and he taught him to recite a mantra whenever he missed him; the mantra contained numerous vulgar words, including words like Oh, Large Penis!


When the man's family, wife, and daughter were having dinner, the older man started to close his eyes, put his palms together, and chant the mantra; the daughter's face became red and ashamed. His wife discovered the offensive language and warned him not to chant it as the Lama wouldn't teach such teachings!


He said I would chant it whenever I missed my Lama, so he chanted a vulgar mantra a few times again every day on many occasions, and he was expelled from their home to a small room outside. Approximately one month later, one day, his wife didn't hear him chanting and listened to the noise of bands singing. She told the daughter to bring some food to her father; when the daughter checked the room,  her father had achieved a rainbow body and said, Drukpa Kunley has enlightened me!


9. The Three Pleasures

A young woman finds pleasure in love.

A young man finds pleasure in sex. 

An older man finds pleasure in his memoirs.

10. The Crazy Yogi

The Yogi culture regards immense compassion and wisdom towards all beings as the epitome of Crazy wisdom.

11. Conclusion

There are so many fascinating stories in his biography! I've read two versions of it and adore them both. It's also beautiful that he was so beloved in Bhutan that people painted symbols of male body parts on their homes as protection. It is a blessing for us beginners to hear the name of Drukpa Kunley, a remarkable Yogi we should remember.

As someone with limited knowledge, writing about a figure of such mastery intimidates me. However, I have written this article to gain merit by mentioning this great master's name. If there are any mistakes in my writing, I humbly request forgiveness from the Dakinis. Drukpa Kunley Khenno!


Sharing this article can help me and other readers, so thank you for taking the time to read it! Additionally, I invite you to read about why meditation is so challenging.The above article is from the Tibetan Audiobook biography of Drukpa Kunley. If there is anything I can do to improve the article, let me know by leaving a comment. Your feedback is highly appreciated.


Written By :Tenzin

Aug 22, 2023


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