A depiction of Sambhala, reputedly painted by, or painted under the direction of, the 8th Karmapa, Mikyo Dorje (mi bskyod rdo rje).

The Kings of Sambhala

Kalkī 1 to 9

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There are some problems with the listing of the kalkī-kings. The general list given in Tibetan texts, and used in the series of pictures shown here, contains 25 names, but the great Indian Kālacakra teacher Vibhūticandra pointed out to Tibetan colleagues that the names of the 18th and 19th in this list, Hari and Vikrama, belonged together as one name, Harivikrama. He also pointed out to them that some Tibetan lists similarly split up the name of number 24 in the list into two names, Ananta and Vijaya. This persists to this day.

The advice of this great Kālacakra teacher was duly noted by the Tibetans but in practice ignored, and their misreading of the Sanskrit when translating into Tibetan was not corrected. Accepting his advice would reduce the list to 24 kings, although the predecessor to Cakrī is in fact another by the name of Yaśas, and his inclusion would return the list to the correct count of 25. He is actually mentioned in a quotation from the Kālacakra Mūlatantra, but this has generally been ignored by Tibetan writers.

The additional error of splitting the name of Anantavijaya would produce a list of 26, unless of course the second Yaśas is omitted, which was generally the case in Tibetan lists.

See this page for the story of how the kings came to be known as kalkī-kings.

1. Yaśas (grags pa(), an emanation of Mañjugoṣa, the king who converted the ṛiṣis to the single vajra-caste. He composed the Laghu-tantra. 2. Puṇḍarīka (padma dkar po(), an emanation of Lokeśvara. He composed the tantra commentary, the Vimalaprabhā. 3. Bhadra (bzang po), an emanation of Yamāntaka.
4. Vijaya (rnam rgyal), an emanation of Kṣitigarbha. 5. Sumitra (bshes gnyen bzang po), an emanation of Jambhaka. 6. Raktapāṇi (phyag dmar), an emanation of Nīvaraṇaviṣkambhin.
7. Viṣṇugupta (khyab 'jug sbas pa), an emanation of Mānaka. 8. Arkakīrti (nyi ma grags), an emanation of Khagarbha. 9. Subhadra (shin tu bzang po), an emanation of Vighnāntaka.

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Last updated 4 February 2010.
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