Conduct tantras (Kangyur Section)

  • Skt.: Caryātantra
  • Tib.: spyod pa’i rgyud/

First published 2010. Last updated 2nd Aug 2023.

Tantras of the Conduct class with both meditational and ritual elements, mostly centered on the deities Vairocana, Acala, or Vajrapāṇi (Toh 494-501).

This is the smallest class of tantras, comprising only 8 works in the Kangyur. The Conduct tantra practice and view are intermediate between those of the Yoga and Action tantras; external ritual is important, but the goal is liberation through internal, meditative practice. Vairocana, Acala and Vajrapāṇi are the principal deities. Other terms (used in some Nyingma classifications of tantra) are Upayoga and Ubhayatantra.

The works in this class are divided according to the three families:

(a) Tathāgata family (Toh 494 and 495), two tantras centered on Vairocana and Acala respectively;

(b) Padma family, not represented here;

(c) Vajra family (Toh 496-501), centered on Vajrapāṇi.