Dakini is a Sanskrit term, Khandro is its Tibetan equivalent, it means "Sky-Goer". Dakinis are portrayed in female form and their male counterparts are known as Dakas. There are two types of dakinis â€“ the Wisdom Dakini and the worldly dakini. Worldly dakinis are the ones still trapped in the cyclic existence and are found in the human and well as the celestial realms. They can take a beautiful or a demonic form. For example, the originally evil five Tseringma sisters were tamed by Guru Padmasambhava into Dharma protectors. A female practitioner who has attained some insights but not yet fully liberated from samsara is also considered to be a worldly dakini.
Wisdom Dakinis are the enlightened ones, such as Vajra Yogini, Tara and Samantabhadri. They are also portrayed as female consorts of the male Buddhas and Bodhisattvas.
Dakini is a source of refuge. Besides taking refuge in the Three Jewels (Buddha, Dharma and Sangha), we also take refuge in the Three Roots (Guru, Yidam and Dakini): Guru as the root of blessings because he or she will guide us to attain enlightenment; Yidam as the root of accomplishment because through the skilful method of practicing on an Yidam or tutelary deity, one will realise the nature of his or her own mind; Dakini as the root of all enlightened activities since Dakini represents primordial wisdom.
Dakini is associated with spaciousness, therefore has the ability to give birth to limitless prospects of enlightened activities which can be grouped into four: pacifying, enriching, magnetising and destroying. Dakini also embodies the union of emptiness and wisdom. There is nothing more than this.
Many people associate the principles of Dakini with physical beauty or physical attractions of a woman, however this is not the ultimate meaning. A Dakini has the ability to move freely in the space, a space which is beyond thoughts and beyond fabrications. This is the state of awareness which is under control, stable and yet free. Everyone has the ability and the potentials to realise the Wisdom Dakini principles or nature within oneself.