Manuscript of "The Life and Songs of Mila Shepe Dorje" (DarkTreasury)
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ABM 039

 Code: ABM 039

  Country: Tibet


  Date: 1450 - 1630

  Dimensions in cm WxHxD: 11 x 44 x 9.7

  Materials: Pigment on paper & carved wood cover

Manuscript of "The Life and Songs of Mila Shepe Dorje" (DarkTreasury)

This refined illuminated manuscript in Tibetan umé semi-cursive script titled "The compilation of the Venerable Mila the Laughing Vajra’s Collected Songs and Liberation Story" contains an ancient hagiography of Tibet’s most celebrated saint and poet Milarepa (1040-1123). Belonging to a category of texts known as the "Twelve Great Repa Disciples" – due to the attribution of its compositions by Milarepa’s twelve foremost yogin close disciples – it is part of the first developed hagiographies gathering a great number of spiritual songs.

An addendum to the colophon relates the transmission history of a text named “Dark Treasury” (Dzö Nakma) composed by the same disciples, amended by Milarepa himself, and transmitted secretly inside the Karma Kagyü school of Tibetan Buddhism until the mid-15th century.

Unlike the standard version of the "Life and Songs of Milarepa" composed in 1488 by Tsang Nyön Heruka, this text presents alternate facts and narratives and is therefore likely to be very valuable for future research on Milarepa.