The 7th Dzongchen Ponlop Rinpoche as a young Lama300STUDY & MEDITATION TRAINING… In 1981, at fifteen, Rinpoche entered Rumtek Monastery’s shedra, or monastic college, the Karma Shri Nalanda Institute for Higher Buddhist Studies. There he trained in the traditional Indo-Tibetan intellectual disciplines of Buddhist philosophy, psychology, logic, and debate. Rinpoche’s teachers and colleagues alike observed him to be a remarkably bright student with a formidable talent for debate. He was appointed by Khenchen Thrangu Rinpoche as a Teaching Assistant and charged with the task of developing the shedra’s library by the Third Jamgon Kongtrul Rinpoche. Later, he would become the primary assistant to Khenpo Tsültrim Gyamtso Rinpoche, transcribing, editing, and compiling some of Khenpo Rinpoche’s most famous and influential philosophical compositions. The first elected president of the college’s Students Union, Rinpoche completed the full shedra curriculum in 1991, graduating first in his class and receiving the degrees of Acharya and Ka-Rabjampa.

Rinpoche holds lineages in both of Indian and Tibetan Buddhism’s two most profound traditions of meditation: Mahamudra (“the great seal”) and Dzogchen (“the great perfection” or “great completion”). Under the close personal tutelage of the greatest masters of the 20th century, Rinpoche has trained intensively in the wide variety of methods that these traditions offer for gaining a thorough understanding of the mind and an expansive, direct realization of the mind’s true nature. Some of the masters who guided Rinpoche in meditation through instruction and transmission include the 16th Karmapa, Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche, Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche, and his present-day root guru, the great scholar-yogi Khenpo Tsültrim Gyamtso Rinpoche.