Mulamadhyamaka-karika rigpawiki

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Mulamadhyamaka-karika (Skt. Prajñā-nāma-mūlamadhyamakakārikā; Tib. དབུ་མ་རྩ་བ་ཤེས་རབ་, Uma Tsawa Sherab, Wyl. rigpawiki dbu ma rtsa ba shes rab; Trad. Chin. 中論), The Root Verses on the Wisdom of the Middle Way — the most famous and important treatise on Madhyamika rigpawiki philosophy, composed by the great master Nagarjuna rigpawiki. It is included among the so-called "thirteen great texts", which form the core of the curriculum in most shedras and on which Khenpo Shenga rigpawiki provided commentaries.


There are twenty-seven chapters:

  1. Examination of Conditions (Skt. Pratyayaparīkṣā)
  2. Examination of Motion (Skt. Gatāgataparīkṣā)
  3. Examination of the Senses (Skt. Cakṣurādīndriyaparīkṣā)
  4. Examination of the Skandhas rigpawiki (Skt. Skandhaparīkṣā)
  5. Examination of the Dhatus (Skt. Dhātuparīkṣā)
  6. Examination of Desire and the Desirous (Skt. Rāgaraktaparīkṣā)
  7. Examination of the Conditioned rigpawiki (Skt. Saṃskṛtaparīkṣā)
  8. Examination of the Agent and Action (Skt. Karmakārakaparīkṣā)
  9. Examination of the Prior Entity (Skt. Pūrvaparīkṣā)
  10. Examination of Fire and Fuel (Skt. Agnīndhanaparīkṣā)
  11. Examination of the Initial and Final Limits (Skt. Pūrvaparakoṭiparīkṣā)
  12. Examination of Suffering rigpawiki (Skt. Duḥkhaparīkṣā)
  13. Examination of Compounded Phenomena (Skt. Saṃskāraparīkṣā)
  14. Examination of Connection (Skt. Saṃsargaparīkṣā)
  15. Examination of Essence (Skt. Svabhāvaparīkṣā)
  16. Examination of Bondage (Skt. Bandhanamokṣaparīkṣā)
  17. Examination of Actions and their Fruits (Skt. Karmaphalaparīkṣa)
  18. Examination of Self and Entities (Skt. Ātmaparīkṣā)
  19. Examination of Time (Skt. Kālaparīkṣā)
  20. Examination of Combination (Skt. Sāmagrīparīkṣā)
  21. Examination of Becoming and Destruction (Skt. Saṃbhavavibhavaparīkṣā)
  22. Examination of the Tathagata rigpawiki (Skt. Tathāgataparīkṣā)
  23. Examination of Errors (Skt. Viparyāsaparīkṣā)
  24. Examination of the Four Noble Truths rigpawiki (Skt. Āryasatyaparīkṣā)
  25. Examination of Nirvana rigpawiki (Skt. Nirvānaparīkṣā)
  26. Examination of the Twelve Links (Skt. Dvādaśāṅgaparīkṣā)
  27. Examination of Views (Skt. Dṛṣṭiparīkṣā)

Tibetan Text



It is said there were eight important commentaries on the text in India, but only four of them have been translated into Tibetan and subsequently found their way into the Tengyur rigpawiki.

  • Akutobhayā (Skt. Akutobhayā, Wyl. dbu ma rtsa ba'i 'grel pa ga las 'jigs med) [1]
  • Buddhapalita rigpawiki, Mula Madhyamaka Vritti (Skt. Mūla-madhyamaka-vṛtti, in Tibetan referred to as the Buddhapalita commentary; Wyl. dbu ma rtsa ba'i 'grel pa buddha pā li ta)
  • Bhavaviveka rigpawiki, The Wisdom Lamp: A Commentary on the Root Verses on the Wisdom of the Middle Way (Skt. Prajñā-pradīpa-mūla-madhyamaka-vṛtti, Wyl. dbu ma'i rtsa ba'i 'grel pa shes rab sgron ma)
  • Chandrakirti rigpawiki, Clear Words (Skt. Mūla-mādhyamaka-vṛtti-prasannapadā)


  • Khenpo Tsültrim Gyamtso, The Sun of Wisdom: Teachings on the Noble Nagarjuna's Fundamental Wisdom of the Middle Way, translated and edited by Ari Goldfield (Boston: Shambhala Publications, 2003), ISBN 978-1570629990
  • Mipham Rinpoche rigpawiki, [A Jewel of the Powerful Nagarjuna's Intention that Perfectly Illuminates the True Nature]



  • Garfield, Jay. The Fundamental Wisdom of the Middle Way. Oxford University Press 1995, ISBN 978-0195093360
  • Goldfield, Ari. Khenpo Tsültrim Gyamtso, The Sun of Wisdom: Teachings on the Noble Nagarjuna's Fundamental Wisdom of the Middle Way
  • Inada, Kenneth. Nagarjuna: A Translation of his Mulamadhyamikakarika. Tokyo: The Hokuseido Press, 1970, ISBN 978-0893460761
  • Kalupahana, David. Nagarjuna: The Philosophy of the Middle Way. Albany: State University, 1986, ISBN 978-0887061493
  • Nagarjuna. The Root Stanzas on the Middle Way (translated by Padmakara Translation Group). (Boulder: Shambhala, 2016), ISBN 978-1611803426
  • Streng, Frederik. Emptiness: A Study in Religious Meaning. Nashville: Abdingdon Press 1967, ISBN 978-0687117086


  • Nagarjuna, Les Stances Fondamentales de la Voie Médiane - Mûlamadhyamakakârikâ, Padmakara Translation Group (trans. Patrick Carré). Translation from Tibetan.
  • Nagarjuna, Stances du milieu par excellence: (Madhyamaka-kārikās), Guy Bugault (Traduction) (Gallimard, 2002). Translation from Sanskrit.


  1. Some attribute the text to Nagarjuna rigpawiki, but others cite the fact that the text quotes Aryadeva rigpawiki as evidence that it could not have been composed by Nagarjuna, who was Aryadeva's teacher.

Teachings Given to the Rigpa Sangha

Internal Links

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