His Holiness The Dalai Lama discovered me when I was about 3 years old. Ever since then, he has been my main inspiration in mundane as well as spiritual life. Whenever I have some difficulties in dealing with day to day life, be it spiritual or worldly, nothing is needed except to remember him and his aspiring activities. I am not the only one saying this or feeling this way, everyone says the same about His Holiness. One of my friends who works for His Holiness's office told me once that if there is any problem to be sorted out, especially something that is impossible to be sorted out, the only thing they have to do is to go and see His Holiness at his office, and a solution will be given in a minute or two. I am sure they can believe that it is His Holiness's great blessings that help to resolve all the impossible issues, because they are physically in contact with him. For people like me who don't have the opportunities to see His Holiness often enough, if we can remember him, all the seemingly impossible tasks can be sorted out by thinking of him. I think it's supposed to be like this with all the enlightened gurus if you have firm and pure devotion and understanding about the overall guru-disciple relationship.
Even though I can't remember very well my first meeting with His Holiness, because I was only 3 years old, I could still recall the moment when I went to have my hair cut by him at his residence as a part of a series of traditional rites. I was talking with him and having a relaxed and good time. I don't remember exactly the subjects we were talking about, the only thing I can remember is that he was asking me a lot of questions and I answered relaxedly. Lately, I was told that Holiness was very surprised that I was so relaxed in front of him, because not many baby reincarnations were able to relax with him, many were afraid and most ended up crying. This actually gave me a great feeling of accomplishment that I myself and my lineage have a direct spiritual and devotional connection with His Holiness, not only in this and previous lives but also in lives to come. Ever since then up until now, I have been nourished by His Holiness's presence in terms of spiritual growth and confidence. Of course, it goes without saying that, we all the Tibetans have been equally nourished by him.
Once I was at the driver's license renewal office, the officers didn't want to see me because I was dressed in our kind of robes. Before saying any words, they asked me, "Why are you in such a strange outfit? Please go back now and come back some time next week." This actually means "Get lost". Then some foreign ladies asked me, "Are you Dalai Lama?" Maybe her English wasn't that good and they meant to ask, "Are you a follower of Dalai Lama?" I replied, "Yes, I am His Holiness Dalai Lama's follower." We started chit chatting in the waiting room mainly about His Holiness. All of a sudden, one officer from the same group who gave me some problems just awhile ago came and asked me politely, "What can I do for you?" And then within a second, my license was renewed. This is one of the fresh examples that I can share with you. The incident also tells us how weak the Buddhists and especially the Tibetan Buddhists are, because when others see somebody in robes, naturally the sense to give difficulties arises, maybe because of what has recently happened in India with some monks in robes that all others in the maroon robes have to suffer as a consequence. However, we are fortunate that His Holiness is the saviour for us.
I had a monk friend who also had similar experience having difficulties when he was wearing monk's robes. My Guru always stresses on ethics, one of them is the dress ethic, in that monks must be in proper robes. But my monk friend disagreed and always said, "We should only be wearing robes when we are in the monastery. When we go out, we should be in lay clothes, otherwise we would have a lot of obstacles in doing everything." I didn't believe him and thought it was just an excuse for him to have good fun of dressing up in different clothes and doing all sorts of things that the monastery would not have allowed him to do. After my own bad experience, I feel that he has a point. Not only my own experience, a lot of holy looking sannyasins, sadhus and practitioners, who roam around in the market or streets, everyone runs away from them as if they carry some contagious diseases, that is very commonly seen. This is quite sad. The consequence of this is that the interest in spirituality will diminish. Then of course, nobody would want to practise, because there is no point and there is no encouragement from the world. Therefore, we all should work collectively, not only among Buddhists, but also among all the spiritual beliefs, hand in hand, we should find a solution so that we can all keep the spirituality for the benefit of all beings. If somebody asks me, I would say that people from all the spiritual beliefs should be working together, through finding our common interests and building a harmonious way of transforming ourselves into better forms, so that the whole world will respect us more. But don't ask me for a solution other than this. As His Holiness also stresses about universal harmony in many interfaiths conference, we should follow his footsteps.
His Holiness is always very fresh and energetic. One of the amazing things for me is that he is always upbeat about everything and especially about helping others, no matter how difficult the hardships he himself has to go through for the sake of Tibetans and all sentient beings as a great Bodhisattva. This can only be done by a real hero like him, who is able to put the interest of the entire universe before his own. For us, if we have minor problems and have no solutions to get rid of them, we may end up committing suicide, just because of selfishness and being caught up with anger, pride and jealousy and all the afflictive emotions.
I don't know where I heard this from, but I can clearly recall about 15 years ago His Holiness said in the public that he had completed millions of millions Mani mantras ever since he came out of Tibet, and when he asked others how many they had accomplished, no one could give him any satisfactory answer. People like us who have a lot of free time cannot even finish half a million and yet His Holiness who has to take care of the well being of all sentient beings (not only just praying but also on the practical level) is able to keep his commitment for personal practice in benefit of all beings. I myself have also committed 100 million Mani Mantra, after that 100 million Amitabha Mantra, followed by 100 million Guru Rinpoche Mantra, but I never managed, so I wonder when my fortune will come allowing me to finish all this. It doesn't mean that His Holiness has 26 or 27 hours in a day. This tells us how divine he is.
Well, I am not going to take much of your time, telling endless inspiring experiences that I have received from His Holiness as showers of blessing because firstly he is well-known worldwide, and secondly, it is going to sound as if I am egoistically trying to use His Holiness to market myself, which definitely is the case with many people. One of the saddest things that we always come across, even in Tibetan society, is that people don't see and appreciate the real and authentic qualities of His Holiness, and they just use him to promote themselves either for their spiritual status, political reputation or their material gain. That is something that I can't bear. This is the reason why I have been struggling for many years within myself whether to list him down as my gurus in my website or not. But then just a while ago when I refreshed my website, I discovered that 3 of my living gurus (the other two being my own uncle and my father) are not listed as my gurus, this make me feel very awkward. I feel that I have to be fair, as I have to live up to my reputation as "Mr Fair".
If you want to know more about His Holiness, as you all know you just need to make a search on the web, and you will find millions of information about his heroic activities.
One of the greatest spiritual masters, Mahasiddha, Jigmed Thrinlay Odzer, was one of the principal disciples of Jigmed Lingpa, the great lineage holder of Dzogchen. The particular region where Mahasiddha Jigmed Thrinle Odzer stayed and liberated beings with his flawless presence of pure compassion is known as Do. As Drupchen in Tibetan language means Mahasiddha, (The great realised one) the two names put together became his title of veneration: Do Drupchen.
Tracing the lineage to the present day, the fourth incarnation of Do Drupchen was born in Gulok, very close to his main seat. Like all the Do Drupchens, he comes directly from the Copper Colour Mountain and returns there upon death until his next reincarnation. This was indirectly indicated when just after his enthronement at the age of three he spontaneously sang the Seven-Line Prayer and other invocations while smiling and laughing in the sweetest, most charming way which moved all the crowd who were there to witness the occasion.
Kyabje Trulshik Ngawang Chokyi Lodro was born in 1923, in Yardrok Taklung, in central Tibet. He was recognised as a youth to be the reincarnation of Trulshik Dongak Lingpa. His first master was Dzatrul Dorje Chang, who was one of the three main disciples of Trulshik Dongak Lingpa. One day, Dzatrul Dorje Chang, after the passing away of his guru, witnessed two flying sparks which he perceived to be coming from the Copper Colour Mountain .One landed in a village near the seat of his master and the other landed in his very own lap. The obvious meaning to him was that there would be two incarnations of Trulshik Dongak Lingpa. One would be found in that village and the other would be found by him and would be under his care. This is what transpired. The spark in the village became extinguished after only a short time, unlike the spark that came to him. Later, he understood that this was a foreshadowing that indicated that the incarnation in the village would not live long, because that is how things took place. Whereas, the incarnation which came to his care, that of Trulshik Rinpoche, had a long life, indicated by the bright, long-lasting light of the direct message from the Copper Colour Mountain. Indeed, this message was pure joy, corresponding to the pure joy of the living Trulshik, who is still with us. Kyabje Trulshik approached the greatest masters of his time and received a complete traditional education. Kyabje Trulshik stayed with his disciples in a remote place to the south of Everest. He is still spending most of his time in retreat there at Thubten Dongak Chöling. I have requested Kyabje Trulshik to write his autobiography to inspire all the devotees with his divine example.
I was introduced to him by His Holiness Dudjom Yeshe Dorje, saying that I should get the rest of the Dzogchen lineage from him as KyabjeTrulshik was inseperable from Dudjom Rinpoche himself, meaning that he holds all of the Dzogchen, including the unique lineage of His Holiness. When I first went to see him, I travelled anonymously for many days until I reached the site of his monastery where I pitched a tent below the Gompa. He was in a strict retreat but he sent a monk with a note that said he had been waiting for me as His Holiness Dudjom Rinpoche had indicated our meeting to him though he was no longer in this world. Kyabje Trulshik to me was an omnisciently compassionate one, yet his demeanor was that of a completely humble person with no airs of any kind.
Unfortunately, my beloved Guru left us in September 2011. May he return swiftly to continue guiding us.
The king of all the great yogis in the 20th century, Jigdral Yeshe Dorje, commonly known as Dudjom Rinpoche (1904-1987), was the reincarnation of one of Guru Padmasambhava's twenty-five disciples, Kyeo Chung Lotsawa. Incidentally, one of his previous incarnations was Lingchen Repa, root guru of the first Gyalwang Drukpa Tsangpa Gyare Yeshe Dorje.
When past incarnation, Dudjom Lingpa or Geley Terton, intended to leave his relative body and wanted to take reincarnated form, he told his disciples to prepare to journey towards Pemakod, where he said he would be going and informed them that this place in southeast Tibet was like a paradise on earth. Relatively speaking, he was very old, and people had a difficult time believing he would travel that distance, that is, until he started making a carriage for himself. Some of his aged disciples even started their journey ahead of him knowing that it could take them at least a year to get there. The size of the carriage that he made for himself to ride in was infant-size and people remained in a confused dilemma until the morning when they found him in his completed state of meditation that continued for a few weeks. The young reincarnated form of Dudjom was later found in Pemakod exactly where Dudjom Lingpa wanted himself to be reborn. He was recognized by Phukhong Tulku, a disciple of Dudjom Lingpa and Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo, according to Dudjom Lingpa's specific instructions on how to recognize his father, who was Prince of Kanam, a direct descendant of King Trisong Detsen, and his mother, Namgyal Drolma. Dudjom Lingpa's disciples were so pleasantly astonished to see him recognising all of them and communicating with them in the local dialect of the Gulok region where he had spent his past life. At the young age of fourteen, His Holiness became widely known as a scholar and meditation master. Many of his students have since shown signs of full enlightenment. There were no Yogis or enlightened scholars who exceeded him in the region at that time. He followed his own omniscience and decided to leave Tibet in 1958, before the difficult time in the country occurred. He then dedicated his entire time and effort to teaching and empowering millions of his devotees across the world. His Holiness told us that despite all the activities that he had engaged in back in Tibet, he found the empowerments with the teachings the most beneficial for others. He said that he did try almost everything else to help beings, but unfortunately, due to the lack of positive karma, not many of the activities became as beneficial as he expected. Subsequently, he said he was not interested in anything but teaching and empowering with the blessings those who wanted him to do so.
Dudjom Rinpoche passed into parinirvana on the 17th of January, 1987 at his residence in France. I was told by one of the masters who was there to serve him that relics of his body were left as a sign of dissolving his Nirmanakaya body into the pure space of the Dharmakaya. His relative physical body had also shrunken by almost 85 %. His remaining body that he purposely left behind for us devotees is presently placed in a stupa in one of his main seats, near Boudhanath, Nepal.
Although I believe that I have a magnificent connection with this great yogi from many past lives, somehow due to my lack of some particular positive Karma, I did not have much chance to be with him physically in this life. However, I have had the pleasure of receiving some direct instructions on mind and the entire Terdzod empowerment, among others. On one special occasion I was given a 3-word instruction on essential mind - and that was it! I could not explain what actually happened with me at that moment. However, I have no interest to mention these things. I wish these kinds of yogis and masters, in order to save all of us, would fill the entire world. May I reunite with him wherever he is now!