The Tibetan Buddhist teachings on the freedom that comes from perceiving the emptiness of all phenomena—teachings known collectively by the name Mahamudra—are presented here with remarkable clarity through commentary on a twelfth-century text. The text is "Gampopa's Great Teachings to the Assembly," by Gampopa, the foremost disciple of the legendary figure Milarepa and founder of Tibetan Buddhism's Kagyu school. The commentary is by Ringu Tulku Rinpoche, a contemporary teacher of deep learning and profound practice with a remarkable gift for presenting these traditional teachings in a way that is accessible to Western hearts and minds.
Gampopa in his teaching combined the general Mahayana teachings he received from the Kadampa tradition of Atisha with the quintessential Vajrayana teachings, which he received from his teacher, Milarepa. These became the basis of the Kagyu lineage teachings that he founded. This particular text, which includes both Mahayana and Vajrayana teachings, is representative of the classic teachings of the Kagyu tradition in general.