Finally! After 15 years of work, the book is now available at Wisdom Publications (https://wisdomexperience.org/product/buddhas-single-intention/). 841 pages packed with the wisdom of Kyobpa Jigten Sumgön, his fathers, and his sons.
Here is the forword of His Holiness Kyabgön Chetsang Rinpoche:
It gives me great pleasure to be able to offer a few words on the occasion of the publication of Professor Jan-Ulrich Sobisch’s The Buddha’s Single Intention: Drigung Kyobpa Jikten Sumgön’s Vajra Statements of the Early Kagyü Tradition. I have been aware of Professor Sobisch’s ongoing study of Kyobpa Jikten Sumgön’s Single Intention, or Gongchik (dgongs gcig), for at least the last decade or so—first with the late Ngawang Tsering and later with several learned teachers of our Drigung Kagyü lineage. It is gratifying to now have in hand the fruit of Professor Sobisch’s hard work. In particular, with the help of Khenpo Könchok Rangdröl, former principal of Kagyu College in Dehradun, India, Professor Sobisch has produced a meticulous and complete translation of Rikzin Chökyi Drakpa’s influential Gongchik commentary known as Light of the Sun. Furthermore, this volume also includes Professor Sobisch’s careful selection of relevant passages from the two earliest surviving Gongchik commentaries—the Dorsherma and Rinjangma, both composed within fifty to sixty years of Kyobpa Jikten Sumgön’s mahāparinirvāṇa in 1217.
As the book’s title suggests, it is a window into the early, formative period of the Kagyü tradition. The root text of the Gongchik with 150 vajra statements organized into seven chapters (plus an eighth, ancillary chapter with 47 vajra statements) represents the distillation of Kyobpa Jikten Sumgön’s unique presentation of the Buddhadharma as he received from his root guru Phakmodrupa, who in turn was one of the key disciples of Gampopa, fountainhead of the Dakpo Kagyü. In particular, these vajra statements reflect Kyobpa Jikten Sumgön’s understanding that all 84,000 aspects of the Buddhadharma—the teachings classified into the so-called Lesser, Great, and Vajra Vehicles; the categories of prātimokṣa precepts, bodhisattva trainings, and tantric samayas; the division of sūtras and tantras into those of definitive meaning and those requiring further explanation—have a single, unified, holistic intention of revealing the fundamental nature (gshis babs) of all phenomena to us deluded sentient beings so that we can be freed from suffering and attain the perfect buddha state. Importantly, this fundamental nature—whether we call it sugatagarbha, emptiness, dependent origination, nature of mind, or rikpa—can best be understood in the way that virtue and nonvirtue lead to happiness and suffering, respectively and unmistakenly, and ultimately to the resultant states of nirvāṇa and saṃsāra. With this understanding, the entire path taught by the Buddha is none other than the exhaustion of all nonvirtue and the perfection of all virtue. This emphasis on the inseparability of the fundamental nature and the incontrovertible workings of cause and effect is the cornerstone of Kyobpa Jigten Sumgön’s Gongchik teachings.
The early Kagyü masters are well known for their absolute commitment to practice and to the spiritual welfare of their students. While learning and studying the Buddhadharma is necessary, early Kagyü masters such as Marpa, Milarepa, Gampopa, Phakmodrupa, and Kyobpa Jikten Sumgön did not engage in disputing and debating philosophical positions or composing treatises establishing tenet systems. Their energies went instead into their personal meditation practice and into guiding devoted students through personal, intimate, and direct instructions. Therefore it is my hope that with Wisdom Publications’ publishing of Professor Jan-Ulrich Sobisch’s masterful presentation of Kyobpa Jikten Sumgön’s Gongchik, readers will now not only be exposed to a major system of thought and practice in Tibetan Buddhism, but more importantly, they will take to heart these vajra statements and the related commentaries for the task of exhausting all nonvirtue and perfecting all virtue, thus leading to the perfect buddha state.
Finally, as one blessed with the name Drikung Kyabgön, I offer my personal appreciation to Professor Sobisch and to all the Drigung Kagyü teachers who have assisted in this project. This book is an important contribution to a greater understanding of the legacy of Kyobpa Jikten Sumgön and his sublime successors. May this book inspire further interest and engagement with the jewels held by the glorious Drigung Kagyü!
H.H. Drikung Kyabgön Tinle Lhundup, Head of the Drigung Kagyü Lineage