Born in Orissa in eastern India, Subhakarasimha was a descendent of King Amtodana, uncle of Sakyamuni Buddha. He ascended the throne at the age of 13 but was opposed by his brothers. After defeating his brothers in the subsequent power struggle, Subhakarasimha abdicated in favor of his older brother and renounced. He first studied in southern India, traveled around different kingdoms and then arrived at Nalanda Monastery, where he studied under Dharmagupta and mastered the esoteric teachings. At the age of 80, he arrived in Chang’an, and Emperor Xuanzong of the Tang Dynasty appointed him as the National Preceptor. In the following year, by imperial decree, he began the translation of sutras in Puti Temple, after which he devoted himself to translating esoteric texts. Subhakarasimha was known as one of the Three Great Master of the Kaiyuan Era, along with Vajrabodhi and Amoghavajra. Together they laid the foundation of the Esoteric School in China.