The text contained in this book is a biography of Padmasambhava, one of the most important figures in Tibetan Buddhism and the main originator of its introduction and diffusion in Tibet. There are many biographies in Tibetan of this great yogi, some of which have been translated into Western languages.
The literal meaning of the word tantra is “continuity,” which also expresses the fact that the only possibility of accessing the Tantric teachings is by receiving them from a qualified guru who received them from another master, so that there is an unbroken continuity in the transmission from teacher to disciple. Since it was Padmasambhava who brought Tantric Buddhism to Tibet, he is the most important guru in its lineages. Therefore, any reliable testimony regarding his life is extremely valuable for those who study and practice these teachings in the Western world.
Taranatha (1575-?), the author of this biography, is one of the major Tibetan historians of his time. His testimony is still considered reliable by Tibetans, and the source of his writings is part of the kama tradition. In this work he deals with the history of Padmasambhava as a modern historian would, wishing to satisfy a need for objectivity, using the most reliable sources available to him, and making accurate references to them in his text, so as to dispel any doubts regarding the authenticity of his account.