A Song for the King - Praise

Saraha on Mahamudra Meditation

“A lively commentary [on] a poetic classic of Buddhist literature. Editor Michele Martin has supplemented Thrangu Rinpoche’s lucid commentary with notes and appendices that make the book as accessible for novices as it is rewarding for experienced practitioners and scholars.”—Buddhadharma

“I found A Song for the King a very helpful book for my own practice. It's a clear and profound presentation of Mahamudra.”—Melvin McLeod, Editor in Chief of Buddhadharma and Shambhala Sun

A Song for the King is the most important work in a generation about the pithiest and deepest of Saraha’s great trilogy of Indian Buddhist tantric songs. Michele Martin’s translation and annotations are lucid and well informed, and Thrangu Rinpoche’s learned but accessible commentary allows readers to use Saraha’s poem as key to seeing, meditating, and acting in the profound Indo-Tibetan tradition of mahamudra, the great seal of reality.”—Roger Jackson, author of Tantric Treasures: Three Collections of Mystical Verse from Buddhist India and Professor of Religion at Carleton College

“Saraha’s Song for the King is a sublime ode to enlightenment, famous in Tibet for nearly a millennium. Traditionally counted as one in a trilogy of poetic songs offered by Saraha to the king, queen, and people of eastern India, A Song for the King uses a series of linked metaphors to lead the listener through the stages of mahamudra meditation. The oral teaching on Saraha’s Song by contemporary master Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche, so smoothly translated here by Peter O’Hearn, is based upon a famous sixteenth-century commentary by Karma Trinlépa. Thrangu Rinpoche’s careful analysis helps the reader to savor both the aesthetic richness and the contemplative instructions of Saraha’s verses. This eloquent work is a welcome contribution to the literature on Saraha’s songs in English.”—Kurtis R. Schaeffer, author of Dreaming the Great Brahmin: Tibetan Traditions of the Buddhist Poet-Saint Saraha. and Professor of Tibetan Buddhism at the University of Virginia

“Saraha was one of the 84 masters of India and he lived, most probably, in ninth-century Bengal. Tradition has it that he was the first to introduce mahamudra as the central practice of meditation. A very accessible and powerful form of meditation, it has been popular with Westerners since it was recommended in the 1970s by the Sixteenth Karmapa. This edition, by the tutor of the Seventeenth Karmapa, brings the classical Indian text to life.”—Mandala