Dol po pa

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དོལ་པོ་པ་ཤེས་རབ་རྒྱལ་མཚན་
Wylie dol po pa shes rab rgyal mtshan
English Phonetics Dölpopa Sherab Gyaltsen
Other names
  • ཤེས་རབ་རྒྱལ་མཚན་
  • ཤེས་རབ་མགོན་
  • རྟོན་པ་བཞི་ལྡན་
  • shes rab rgyal mtshan
  • shes rab mgon
  • rton pa bzhi ldan
Dates
Birth:   1292
Death:   1361
Place of birth:   gtsang stod mnga' ris dol po gru gsum spu mdo


Tibetan calendar dates

Dates of birth
Day
Month
Gender Male
Element Water
Animal Dragon
Rab Jyung 5
About
Religious Affiliation
Jonang
Teachers
tshul khrims snying po · skyi ston 'jam dbyangs · skyi ston grags pa rgyal mtshan · sa skya slob dpon shes rab bzang po · gzhon nu bzang po · blo gros bstan pa · jo gdan mkhan po bsod nams grags pa · nag 'bum · jo nang chos rje yon gtan rgya mtsho
Students
jo nang lo tsA ba blo gros dpal · g.yag sde paN chen · bsod nams rgyal mtshan · phyogs las rnam rgyal · sa bzang ma ti paN chen blo gros rgyal mtshan · 'bri gung lo tsA ba ma Ni ka shrI · nya dbon kun dga' dpal · kun spangs chos grags dpal bzang
Links
BDRC Link
https://www.tbrc.org/#!rid=P139
Treasury of Lives Link
https://treasuryoflives.org/biographies/view/Dolpopa-Sherab-Gyeltsen/2670
Treasury of Lives Excerpt
Dölpopa Sherab Gyaltsen was one of the most influential Buddhist masters in Tibetan history. He first became an important scholar of the Sakya tradition, but then moved to Jonang Monastery. There he became the fourth holder of the monastic seat and constructed a monumental stupa. Dölpopa’s ideas, specifically his famous formulation of the zhentong view and his interpretations of Mahāyāna and Vajrayāna doctrine, have elicited controversy for nearly seven hundred years.
Himalayan Art Resources Link or Other Art Resource
https://www.himalayanart.org/search/set.cfm?setID=1595
Wiki Pages


Buddha Nature Project
Person description or short bio
Dölpopa Sherab Gyaltsen was one of the most influential Buddhist masters in Tibetan history. He first became an important scholar of the Sakya tradition, but then moved to Jonang Monastery. There he became the fourth holder of the monastic seat and constructed a monumental stupa. Dölpopa’s ideas, specifically his famous formulation of the zhentong view and his interpretations of Mahāyāna and Vajrayāna doctrine, have elicited controversy for nearly seven hundred years.

Expand to see this person's philosophical positions on Buddha-nature.

Is Buddha-nature considered definitive or provisional?
Position: Definitive
Notes: "For Dölpopa, the teaching on buddha nature is of definitive meaning and serves as one of the cornerstones of his Shentong view. He typically describes both buddha nature and the dharmakāya as being ultimately really established, everlasting, eternal, permanent, immutable (ther zug), and being beyond dependent origination." Brunnhölzl, K., When the Clouds Part, p. 68.
All beings have Buddha-nature
Position: Yes
If "Qualified", explain:
Notes: "The crucial stanza [RGV] I.27, in which the three reasons for the presence of a buddha nature in sentient beings are presented, is thus explained in the following way:

Since the dharmakāya of the perfect buddha embraces and pervades all phenomena, since there is no differentiation [to be made] within the dharmatā concerning all samsāra and nirvāna, and since the potential of the tathāgata exists in all sentient beings as the natural purity of the dharmadhātu, which can be purified of hindrances, truly every being possesses, always, continuously, and throughout beginningless time, the ultimate essence of the Buddha." Mathes, K., A Direct Path to the Buddha Within, p. 82.

Which Wheel Turning
Position: Third Turning
Notes:
Yogācāra vs Madhyamaka
Position:
Notes: Dolpopa has a unique view on this issue as Wangchuk points out:
  • "Dölpopa argues the following: (1) Cittamātra is categorized into Conventional Cittamātra (kun rdzob pa'i sems tsam) and Ultimate Cittamātra (don dam pa'i sems tsam); (2) Cittamātra must not be conflated with Vijnānavāda; (3) Madhyamaka is grouped into Madyamaka without Appearance (snang med dbu ma) and Madhyamaka with Appearance (snang bcas dbu ma). His Mahäyäna doxography differs significantly from that of other fourteenth-century Tibetan scholars." Wangchuk, Tsering, The Uttaratantra in the Land of Snows, p. 47.
  • It seems that the simple answer is that Dolpopa espoused Great Madhyamaka (dbu ma chen mo) or Madhyamaka with Appearance (snang bcas dbu ma), which is equivalent to Ultimate Cittamātra (don dam pa'i sems tsam). See Wangchuk, Tsering, The Uttaratantra in the Land of Snows, pp. 49-50.
Zhentong vs Rangtong
Position: Zhentong
Notes: He was not the first to use the term, but he was the one to define and make it a central feature of his innovative philosophical position:
  • "According to traditional Tibetan accounts, the revolutionary theory that the ultimate is not "empty of an own-being” (rang stong) but “empty of other” (gzhan stong) arose in Dölpopas mind during a Kālacakra retreat at Jonang. Lhai Gyaltsen informs us that Dölpopas realization was connected with the Kālacakratantra and the construction of the great stūpa in Jonang, which was consecrated in 1333. One of the first works in which Dölpopa expressed his new zhentong understanding of the Buddhist doctrine was his famous Ri chos nges don rgya mtsho. His last major work was the Bka bsdu bzhi pa (Bka' bsdu bzhi pa'i don bstan rtsis chen po, The Great Reckoning of the Doctrine That Has the Significance of a Fourth Council), which can be seen as a final summary of Dölpopas views." Mathes, K., A Direct Path to the Buddha Within, p. 75.
Promotes how many vehicles?
Position:
Notes:
Analytic vs Meditative Tradition
Position:
Notes:
What is Buddha-nature?
Position: Tathāgatagarbha as the Emptiness That is an Implicative Negation (with enlightened qualities)
Notes: "He typically describes both buddha nature and the dharmakāya as being ultimately really established, everlasting, eternal, permanent, immutable (ther zug), and being beyond dependent origination. He also equates the tathāgata heart with “ālaya-wisdom” as opposed to the ālaya-consciousness." Brunnhölzl, K., When the Clouds Part, p. 68.
Svātantrika (རང་རྒྱུད་) vs Prāsaṅgika (ཐལ་འགྱུར་པ་)
Position:
Notes:
Causal nature of the vajrapāda
Position: