Drubgyud Tenzin Rinpoche is the abbot of more than 150 monks at Chökyi Gyatso Institute (CGI), a unique and progressive monastery in eastern Bhutan. Born in Nepal in 1983, he was recognized by Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche as the incarnation of Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche’s maternal grandfather, Lama Sonam Zangpo, who was a great yogi from Bhutan and the founder of CGI .
Drubgyud Tenzin Rinpoche trained at Chokyi Lodro Institute in Himachal Pradesh, India and at other of Himalayan region’s monastic colleges. He studied Sanskrit in Varanasi, India, and completed a 3-year retreat in Paro Bhutan. Rinpoche speaks and writes English fluently and in now temporarily residing in Canada. He is married and a father.
Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche was born in 1910 and was recognized by the great lamas Loter Wangpo and Mipham Rinpoche as an incarnation of Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo. His principal teacher was Shechen Gyaltsap Rinpoche, and he was also the heart-son of Jamyang Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö. In his teens and early twenties, he stayed in retreat in the mountains of Kham, after which he was encouraged to teach.
Chögyam Trungpa writes fondly of his childhood memories of Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche:
“I felt drawn to him as if he had been my father; and thus I often addressed him without any shyness or doubt. He welcomed me as the reincarnation of his own guru, and since I was still only a child of ten he brought me toys and sweets. He was very tall and dignified and never seemed in a hurry. Whatever he did was expressed to perfection, in fact he surpassed anyone I had ever met; his writings were equally remarkable, and added to this he was a poet and had a gift for telling delightful stories.” (Born in Tibet, 1966)
In the years that followed the exodus from Tibet, Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche became a pillar of the buddhist educational system and a seemingly inexhaustible source of teachings. In addition to possessing in abundance the qualities of an authentic spiritual master, he was the epitome of selflessness and generosity, travelling wherever he was invited to teach. Dilgo Khyentse would offer teachings endlessly, from early morning to late at night, and would rise at 2-3 every morning to practice until 9. Although he undoubtedly was always immersed in the expanse of unconditional wisdom, to set an example for his students by showing how to practice, he spent in all over 20 years in retreat. Rinpoche became the chaplain of the Royal Family of Bhutan, as well as a tutor of H.H. the Dalai Lama. Through his teaching and the printing of many rare books, he was responsible for the continuation of many teachings that would have been lost during the cultural changes of the past century. He built stupas and established several retreat centres and monasteries, including the great Shechen Monastery in Nepal. His collected writings are published in 25 volumes. He passed away in 1991.