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The Kalpa Group supports a range of activities that will expand the scholarly understanding of the Bön tradition and its formative position in Tibetan history, and present these findings to a broad audience in order to generate a greater understanding of the Bön tradition, and its central role in the lives of Bönpo communities. Projects include annotated translations and textual studies, books and articles for a more general readership, documentary films, and databases of manuscripts and photographs relevant to Bön.

Sacred Landscape and Pilgrimage in Tibet

This book accompanies the film “In Search of Zhang Zhung”. It is built around the journey from Nepal to Mount Kailash, with additional chapters on Bön history and the status of the religion in the modern world. The diary of the journey kept by Geshe Gelek Jinpa, containing excerpts from Bönpo texts dealing with Zhang Zhung and the region of Mount Kailash, will be published in a bilingual Tibetan-English volume.

The author of the main Bonpo guide to Mount Kailash, Karu Druwang Tenzin Rinchen (1801-1860), left an autobiography that contains a fascinating account of his travels in Tibet as well as in Himalayan regions such as Mustang and Dolpo. A translation of this work by Khenpo Tenpa Yungdrung and Charles Ramble will be published in 2013.

Other translations due to be published include the Dragpa Lingdrag (Per Kvaerne and Dan Martin), the earliest Bönpo history of Tibet, and the biographies of the lineage masters of the spiritual tradition known as Atri. A major study of Bön liturgical music by Ricardo Canzio will appear in 2013.

Other book projects, notably a translation of the earliest Bonpo history and the biography of a major nineteenth-century lama, are currently in progress.