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His Holiness Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche 

His Holiness
Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche

- disciple of the Third Trungram Gyalwa Rinpoche and guru of the Fourth Trungram Gyalwa Rinpoche

(Photograph by Matthieu Ricard)

His Holiness Kyabje Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche (1910-1991), a renowned scholar, sage, poet and terton (spiritual treasure-discoverer), was one of the greatest and most influential spiritual leaders in the 20th century. His teachings profoundly touched and moved the minds and hearts of Buddhists worldwide. His Holiness Khyentse Rinpoche was recognized by the Saint Mipham Namgyal Rinpoche as a tulku or incarnation of Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo, one of the paramount tertons and chief advocators of the Rime Movement, a non-sectarian movement in Tibetan Buddhism.

At eleven years old, Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche entered Shechen Monastery in Kham, one of the six main monasteries of the Nyingma School and was enthroned there by his root guru, Shechen Gyaltsap Rinpoche as the wisdom or mind emanation of Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo. From Shechen Gyaltsap Rinpoche, he received all the essential empowerments and instructions of the Nyingma tradition, and thus his accomplishments led him to serve as the distinguished head of the Nyingma lineage. From the age of 15 to 28, His Holiness remained in meditation in silent retreat. Later, he spent many years studying with Dzongsar Khyentse Chokyi Lodro (1893-1959), known as the activity-emanation of Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo. Khyentse Chokyi Lodro Rinpoche equipped him with numerous esoteric teachings and practices, notably "The Collection of Revealed Treasures," as the reviver of Buddha's teachings with special emphasis on the Dzogchen tradition.

Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche
- meditator from youth

(Photographer Unknown)

During the prolonged period when Khyentse Rinpoche stayed at Ngonmo Namzong rocky mountain (the mountain where the Third Trungram Gyalwa Rinpoche's meditation cave exists), Gyalwa Rinpoche ("Drungnam Gyatrul" in some publications) transmitted to him some of the most precious teachings including the grand empowerment, instruction and transmission of Chakrasamvara. Having stated that Khyentse Rinpoche will bring great benefit to the Dharma and a great number of sentient beings, Gyalwa Rinpoche said, unlike most other Tertons who did not live long, Khyentse Rinpoche should have a long life. Then he gave a long-life empowerment and blessings through samadhi, entrusting his special instructions to Khyentse Rinpoche.

Besides Shechen Gyaltsap, Chokyi Lodro and Trungram Gyalwa Rinpoche, Khyentse Rinpoche studied under many other outstanding teachers including Khenpo Shyenga (1871-1927), Pema Wangchuk Gyalpo (1886-1952), and more than fifty Kagyu and Sakya masters. His miraculous capability obtained through the years-long diligent meditation and his vast knowledge from austere study manifested in his teachings in true altruism. Khyentse Rinpoche is authentically the embodiment of loving-kindness, wisdom and compassion.

In the late 1950's, Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche and his family moved to Bhutan in exile where he was revered as the spiritual master for the Royal family. Since then, Kheyntse Rinpoche's activities also extended to India, Nepal, Southeast Asia and several Western counties where he provided countless valuable teachings, established Buddhist temples, colleges and monasteries and preserved several stupas and statues. Noticeably, the traditional rebuilding of Shechen Monastery in Nepal is one of his achievements and the famed Enlightenment Stupa in Bodhgaya, India was constructed for the benefit of all beings to achieve ultimate state of enlightenment. After 25 years in exile, Khyentse Rinpoche initiated the re-establishment of Shechen Monastery and restored the Samye Monastery in Tibet, which were destroyed during the Chinese Cultural Revolution. In addition, Rinpoche exerted an enormous effort in his writings and in saving scriptures, termas and countless texts to resuscitate the Tantric teachings and practices. His Holiness' books, "The Excellent Path to Enlightenment," "Guru Yoga," etc., have benefited innumerable people across races and religions worldwide. Khyentse Rinpoche taught with immense clarity and enthusiasm that deeply inspired many on the spiritual path to enlightenment.

Throughout his life, Khyentse Rinpoche traveled widely from the Himalayas to the West, giving teachings to many reincarnated lamas and countless students. Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche's immense knowledge and the depth of his inner realization made him one of the most qualified teachers of our time. His students include the current Trungram Gyalwa Rinpoche, Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche, Shechen Rabjam Rinpoche, the 14th Dalai Lama, Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, Trulshig Rinpoche and many others.


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