My studies focus on Indo-Tibetan esoteric Buddhism, especially the Tibetan Renaissance period in the eleventh to fourteenth
centuries, when late Indian tantric Buddhism was imported to Tibet. It was a period when a vast array of different masters, teachings, and movements flourished, and new, distinctively Tibetan ideas and practices were formulated. I am interested in how the Tibetan Buddhist traditions were formed and consolidated out of the creative ferment of this fascinating time period and the role of literary works in this process.
The Great Perfection ( rdzogs chen ) of the Nyingma order is one of the most interesting and influential traditions to emerge during the Renaissance period. My research, in particular, focuses on a Great Perfection anthology of visionary literature, The Unimpeded Realization of Samantabhadra ( kun tu bzang po’i dgongs pa zang thal ), revealed by an itinerant tantric yogi Rindzin Gödem (1337-1408). In addition to elucidating the diverse contents of this massive literary masterpiece, I am examining its role in the final synthesis of the several centuries of innovative developments in the Great Perfection philosophy and contemplation.