Himalayan Art Resources

Indian Adept: Vinapa

Vinapa Masterworks

Subjects, Topics & Types:
- Jalandhara Biography (below)
- Identifiable Mahasiddhas
- Mahasiddhas Main Page
- Deities Related to Music
- Confusions: Drugpa Kunleg
- Others...

Vinapa belongs to both the Abhayadatta and the Vajrasana systems of the Eighty-four Mahasiddhas.

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Jeff Watt [updated 4-2020]

The Musician

The only son of the king and heir to the throne of Gauda, Vinapa was loved by his parents and royal court who all planned for him to one day become king himself. Yet despite his privilege and royal duty, Vinapa’s only passion was music. He endlessly played the vina, a complex and enchanting stringed instrument, and was obsessed with the deep sounds of the tambura. Showing no interest in politics, his parents became worried that he would not grow to be a fit ruler. They requested that the holy Guru Buddhapa come and teach Vinapa the Dharma and eventually wean him from music. Although Vinapa was drawn to Buddhapa, he told him that he would never give up his vina, but that if there was a Buddhist sadhana he could learn without abandoning his music, he would surely practice it. Buddhapa taught him a practice where he was to calm his immature mind by meditating on the pure sound of his instrument, freeing his mind from all mental construct and judgment. Vinapa practiced this for nine years and attained the supreme state of Mahamudra. He then became a great teacher, instructing innumerable students on many techniques of Buddhist practice until he gave his last testament and his body passed into the Dakini’s paradise.

Monty McKeever 12-2005