In Part One: Introduction to the Buddhist Path, His Holiness the Sakya Trichen—the head of the glorious Sakya lineage, one of the four primary schools of Tibetan Buddhism—presents the essential Buddhist teachings of the four noble truths, universal compassion, and the proper motivation for practice. This book opens by sharing a private teaching His Holiness gave to a young newcomer seeking to understand this great master’s spiritual heritage. His Holiness’ advice inspires us to integrate the living power of these teachings into our daily lives.
Part Two: Chogyal Phagpa on the Buddhist Path unpacks two texts by the legendary thirteenth-century Drogön Chögyal Phagpa. A founding father of the Sakya school, Chögyal Phagpa became the first imperial preceptor under Kublai Khan and thus converted the Mongols to Tibetan Buddhism. His two texts presented here, A Gift of Dharma to Kublai Khan and A Garland of Jewels, which was written as advice for Prince Gibek Timur, are marvels of insight.
Freeing the Heart and Mind, Part Two begins with a biography of Chögyal Phagpa by Ngawang Kunga Sönam, himself an important Sakya throneholder. The two texts are then presented in sparkling translation, each accompanied by penetrating commentary from His Holiness, who takes these texts, written initially for royalty, and shows how their timeless lessons—how to meditate, the personal characteristics we should cultivate, and the states on the path to buddhahood—can be incorporated into our lives today.
Taken together, these two books form an essential course developed by His Holiness the Sakya Trichen, showcasing his trademark clarity and deep wisdom.