Friday 9 September 2011

Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche

Tibetan Master, Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche
Khyentse Rinpoche

The evenings at Shechen Monastery were, for me, rather special times.  Khyentse Rinpoche would be sitting in his wooden meditation box, usually with a group of Lamas and devotees around him, his vast form glowing in an almost unearthly radiance mixed with the soft rays of the sinking sun.  

Shafts of sunlight would filter in through the yellow curtains, casting a golden light across the room. Butter lamps flickered on the altar and the smoke of incense  wafted  about in the still air.  There was a silence in those evening, an ambiance of grace that permeated the whole atmosphere.  During those hours i always had a sense of absolute contentment. In his presence, nothing was missing, the world felt utterly complete.

The atmosphere around Khyentse Rinpoche was never static, it always felt  'full'  to the point of saturation and yet, at the same time, intensely charged and deeply silent.  

His 'presence' created a most unique and dynamic space into which all manner of people from many different walks of life could come and find solace.  He never turned anyone away.  From Kings to ordinary folk from the villages, from high Lamas to simple monks, visitors would stream into his rooms from the crack of dawn until often late at night, Rinpoche, all the while, would be there in his meditation box,  giving,  giving,  giving....

This flow of giving was natural, un-contrived, and inexhaustible.  It was like a bottomless spring that gushes forth into a parched desert, and the thirsty world came to drink from these pristine,  blessed waters.

I remember one evening, after the sun had  set and there were only a handful of visitors and a few Lamas milling about in the large ante room.  Rinpoche was, as usual, in his meditation box and perusing a text, a pair of small reading glasses delicately balanced on his nose.  The silence of that moment between day and night had permeated the place with a feeling of great peace.  

Suddenly the outer door to the waiting room opened and in streamed a large melee of Westerners.  Tall ones, fat ones, thin ones, and short ones.  A whole colorful variety, dressed in all the shades of the spectrum and in fashions from as many different countries around the globe as there were numbers among them.  It was odd to see such a confusion of types float into the room in such disciplined silence and with such a focused sense of purpose on their faces.  In fact it was very striking, quite apart from the contrast that all this sudden influx bought with it...

Read more in Shades of Awareness, Part 3, 
Masters, Mice and Men

Books by the Writer

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