Note 257, p. 231 of this book, contains two errors that need to be corrected, not to annoy Ruth Gamble, but in order to give the full measure of the work of / attributed to her hero, Karmapa Rangjung Dorje in the field of Dzogchen.
(1) The author cites only one Dzogchen text by Rangjung Dorje, but an examination of the colophons in the Mang ngag nges pa section of the Khando Nyingthik reveals five (the largest and most important is n°3, a nearly 70 p. practice manual for the Khando Nyingthik):
1. Shin tu spros med kyi dbang - Composed by Karmapa Rangjung Dorje by combining the text of dGa’ rab rdo rje and the complements (rgyab yig) of Vimalamitra. - pp. 216-232.
2. Rab tu spros med kyi dbang - Composed by Karmapa Rangjung Dorje by combining the text of dGa'-rab rdo-rje and the complements (rgyab yig) of the lineage masters. - pp. 232-247.
4. Nyams len lag khrigs ma'i khrid ngo mtshar can - Composed by Karmapa Rangjung Dorje a year of the bird. - pp. 260-329.
5. Small abridgment of the path, untitled, incipit: na mo Bi ma la mi tra bhya...- Composed by Karma pa Karmapa Rangjung Dorje. - pp. 329-331.
(2) The text Ruth Gamble mentions in her note is as follows:
rDzogs pa chen po snying thig spros bcas kyi dbang lce btsun gyis mdzad pa (pp. 176-197 of the edition consulted).
(a) The author (op. cit., p. 231) does not understand the title of the text. It does not at all mean: “An elaboration on great completion: the empowerment of venerable tongues.” The spros bcas kyi dbang [elaborate empowerment] is the first of a set of four or five empowerments in the Dzogchen Nyingthik system, which corresponds roughly to the initiation of the vase (bum pa'i dbang) in the higher tantras of the “Modern” schools.
As for the “venerable tongues,” it escapes Ruth Gamble that one of the principal masters of the Bima Nyingthik lineage is Chetsün Senge Wangchug (lCe btsun Seng-ge dbang-phyug). The grammar should have enlightened her: lce btsun gyis mdzad pa clearly means: “composed by Chetsün.”
(b) Which brings me to my second point: this writing is thus apparently not by Karmapa Rangjung Dorje, or at least he does not attribute it to himself, or at most as an editor. It appears in fact in the particular lineage that appears in the colophon:
- Zhang mon-pa,
- lHa rje Rang rig,
- lHa rje Ye shes mgon,
- Bla ma Khyung tshang pa,
- rDzong khab rGyal ba blo gros,
- Bla ma Kun dga' don grub,
- rJe rin po che Rang byung rdo rje (the third Karmapa).