The Tibetan collection of the commentaries on the Buddha’s teachings, our first version is the Dege Tengyur.



The Tengyur is all the commentaries of the Buddha’s teachings, sometimes referred to as the Translated Treatises.

The Tengyur is a collection of commentaries on all of the Buddha’s teachings. The commentaries were originally written by great Indian masters which were later translated into the Tibetan language and then called the Tengyur, meaning translated theses. We can persistently use reasoning as a wisdom weapon to cut off the obstacles experienced by sentient beings and use merit to transform them into virtuousness. The original Sanskrit name for this collection is “Shastra”, where “shas” means to cut off and “tra” means to rescue, together meaning “thesis”.

Copies of the Tengyur in the Adarshah offices.


Produced from 1737, Tenpa Tsering, the 42nd chief of the Dege Kham region in Tibet, presided over the publication of the Tengyur, in accordance with the instructions of the 30th Sakya Trinzin Jamyang Tashi Lhundrub
In the fire snake year of the 12th Rabjung according to the Tibetan calendar (year 1737), Tenpa Tsering, the 42nd chief of the Dege Kham region in Tibet, presided over the publication of the Tengyur, in accordance with the instructions of the 30th Sakya Trinzin Jamyang Tashi Lhundrub.

At the time of the publication, Tenpa Tsering mainly referred to the Tengyur written by Ga Anyen Dampa and Situ Chogyi Jungne, disciples of the Yuan dynasty teacher Phags-pa, and offered by the Karmapa. The Dege version of the Tengyur was handwritten with silver ink and includes newly collected texts. Tenpa Tsering passed away after the seventh volume of the Dege Tengyur was being carved. His son, Kunga Trinle Gyaltso, continued to preside over the work of the publication.


TengyurThe Tengyur with an incense offering.
The publication took a period of seven years, completing in the wood mouse year of the 12th Rabjung according to the Tibetan calendar (year 1944), with a total of 209 volumes. Tsultrim Rinchen was then responsible for proofreading the Dege Tengyur and compiled the catalogue named, “Supplication and offering made to the translated commentaries, abundant cloud banks, the new moon of the flourishing ocean of wonderful narration“. Afterwards, an additional four volumes of miscellaneous texts and one volume containing the catalogue were prepared, bringing the total number of volumes to 213 volumes.

Although the Buddha sun has set, the radiant light of the holy dharma remains in the world,
To bring endless benefit to all sentient beings, Emaho, marvelous good merit as this,
Blessed by the radiant beams of Buddha’s qualities, From the Two Supreme Ones, Six Ornaments and Seven Masters,
By the power of the lineage gurus like galaxies in space, The profound and abundant holy dharma remains uncorrupted,
From the ladder of the precious Four Philosophical Schools, Go into the palace of omniscience and unfathomable victory,
Settled upon the precious throne of Shamatha, Countless numbers of lucid expositions manifest,
Realizing the state of enlightenment as it is, Adhere to the treasure chest of the supreme vehicle;
The illustrious and changeless Prasangika-Madhyamika, Pay homage to the learned and accomplished ones.

The printing plates were enshrined at Dege Sutra Printing House and used for the printing and circulation of the texts and so this version of the Tengyur is called the “Dege Tengyur”.

The Dege Tengyur is the more widely distributed version of the Tengyur in Tibet due to its special features such as containing a greater number of texts compared to other versions of the Tengyur, less incorrectly written words, well-ordered and pleasing layout, featuring of exquisite Buddhist images and use of clear and beautiful font that embodies the unique Tibetan wood-carving craftmanship and creates joy in readers of the Tengyur.

It is said that the Dege Tengyur was originally printed using cinnabar but because the price of cinnabar became too high, apart from the first volume of praises which was printed in cinnabar, all other volumes used ink instead.
The entire collection of printing plates is currently kept at the Dege Sutra Printing House and still used for the printing and circulation of the Dege Tengyur.

The Tengyur is arranged as follows:

One volume on the section of praises
01) One volume of praises.

Seventy eight volumes on the section of tantra (stotram)
02) Nine volumes on Hevajra.
03) Five volumes on Kalachakra.
04) Nine volumes on Chakrasamvarasamuchaya.
05) Half a volume on Chaturpitha.
06) Half a volume on Mahamaya.
07) Half a volume on Vajrmrita.
08) Half a volume on Buddhakapala.
09) One volume on Sarvabuddhasamayoga.
10) One volume on Tarasadhana.
11) Seventeen volumes on Mahayogasadhana.
12) Two and a half volumes on Yamarisadhana.
13) Half a volume on Manjurinamasagitisadhana.
14) Half a volume on Bhagavadekajatasadhana.
15) One volume and a half on Vajrapanimahayaksasenapati.
16) Three volumes on Sambhavasanchodani.
17) Nine volumes on Mayajaletantra.
18) Three and a half volumes on Manjusrinamasangiti yogatantra.
19) Two and a half volumes on Sarvarahasya nibandha and Durgatiparisodhana.
20) Two volumes on Vairochanbhisambodhi.
21) Four volumes on Charyatantra.
22) Three and a half volumes on Chaturasadhana.
23) One volume on Chatursamayasadhana.
24) Half a volume on Tirthayatra and Mangalagatha.

Sixteen volumes on the section of Prajnaparamita
25) Eleven volumes on Abhisamayaprajnaparamita.
26) Five volumes on Prajnaparamitopadea.

Seventeen volumes on Madhyamika
27) Seventeen volumes on Mulamadhyamika.

Ten volumes on Sutram

28) Ten volumes on Sarva Sutram Vivarana.

Sixteen volumes on Cittamatram

29) Sixteen volumes on Cittamatram Vivarana.

Eleven volumes on Abhidharma

30) Eleven volumes on Abhidharma.

Eighteen volumes on Vinaya

31) Eighteen volumes on Vinaya.

Section on Jataka

32) Four and a half volumes on Jataka.
33) One volume on Lekha Katha.

Section on Pramana

34) Twenty volumes on Pramana.

Section on Vyakrana
35) Six volumes on Vyakarana Sutra.

Section on Vaidya
36) Five volumes on Vaidya Sutra.

Section on Kritya
37) Half a volume on Kritya Sutra.
38) Half a volume on Niti Sastra.
39) Three and a half volumes on Bhotpandita Sutra.
40) Half a volume on Atisha Sutra.
41) Half a volume on Mangalagatha.