Düdjom Lingpa (1835–1904) was one of the foremost tantric masters of nineteenth-century Tibet, and his powerful voice resonates strongly among Buddhist practitioners today. The Vajra Essence is Düdjom Lingpa’s most extended meditation on the path of Great Perfection, in many senses a commentary on all his other Dzogchen works. Dzogchen, the pinnacle of practice in the Nyingma school, is a radical revelation of the pure nature of consciousness that is delivered from master to disciple and perfected in a meditation that permeates every moment of our experience.
Revealed to Düdjom Lingpa as a visionary “treasure” text in 1862, the Vajra Essence takes the reader through seven stages of progressively deeper practice, from “taking the impure mind as the path” up to the practice of “direct crossing over” (tögal). The longest of Düdjom Lingpa’s five visionary works on Dzogchen, readers will find this a rich and masterful evocation of the enlightened experience. This is the first translation of this seminal work in any Western language, and B. Alan Wallace, with his forty-five-plus years of extensive learning and deep meditative experience, is one of the most accomplished translators of Tibetan texts into English.