Tibetan Renaissance Seminar > Lhokdrak


by Rachel Pang

Lhodrak (lho brag)

Located south of Lhasa, Lhodrak is a place of profound religious significance in Tibet. During the reign of Trisong Detsen (khri srong lde btsan), when the ogress that is land of Tibet was being subdued by Buddhist forces, Lhodrak was the location of the left elbow of the ogress, and the shrine of Khonting was built there to suppress her barbaric presence (The Clear Mirror 175). Another reason for its religious significance is that Lhodrak was the birthplace of the great Kagyu master Marpa, who is often in fact referred to as Marpa of Lhodrak.

Overview of History and significance

Lhodrak in the Blue Annals

Unlike the matter-of-fact references to places of historic significance like Yarlung in The Blue Annals, Lhodrak is often mentioned in conjunction with events that are highly religious in character. For example, Dharmaprānin erects 45 monastic seats at Lhodrak, Banchuk Tsondrü (dban phyug brtson ‘grus) rebuilds temples at Lhodrak, and the Sanskrit originals of five of the nine classes of the doctrines of formless dakinis is preserved in the Grobulu temple (gro bo lu dgon pa) in Lhodrak (Blue Annals 657, 676, 437). Sometimes, these religious events are prophetic in nature as in the case that Tsonkhapa is forewarned by Leskyi Dorje (las kyi rdo rje) not to visit Sing gi ri in East India at Lhodrak (Blue Annals 1009).


Powers, John. Introduction to Tibetan Buddhism.

The Clear Mirror. Trans. McComas Taylor and Lama Choedak Yuthok.