The first Tsoknyi Rinpoche was an emanation of Milarepa's disciple, Rechunga, and the Nyingmapa Terton Ratna Lingpa. He was born in Nangchen, Eastern Tibet, in the first half of the 19th Century and was a contemporary of the three great lamas of the time, Jamyang Khyentse, Jamgon Kongtrul, and Chokgyur Lingpa. . He fully mastered the practices of the Six Dharmas of Naropa and became the principal guru for the 7th Khamtrul Rinpoche, Tenpa'i Nyima, in those practices. He also practiced the Nyingma tradition of Ratna Lingpa with its special yogas as well as his own Nyingmapa practices. He established many centres for the practice of the Dharma in Tibet.
The second Tsoknyi Rinpoche was born into the family of the King of Nangchen in the first half of this century and received the teachings of Naropa from the 7th Khamtrul Rinpoche to whom he had transmitted the teachings in his previous incarnation. He was expert in in the Six Dharmas of Naropa and Mahamudra as well as his own Nyingmapa lineages.
The present Tsoknyi Rinpoche was recognised by H. H. Karmapa XVI at the age of eight. When he was thirteen he was brought to Khampagar Monastery at Tashi Jong in India, the seat of Khamtrul Rinpoche. Tsoknyi Rinpoche's principal teachers have been the 8th Khamtrul Rinpoche, Döngyu Nyima, H. H. Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, and his father Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche.
Tsoknyi Rinpoche completed his formal studies and returned from India to Nepal in 1990. He established his seat in Kathmandu at Ngesdön Ösel Ling Monastery which he planned and built in consultation with his father, Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche. Ngesdön Ösel Ling is the site of on-going, traditional, Tibetan three-year retreats and an International Buddhist Meditation Centre. It is headquarters for the Drupa Kagyu Heritage Foundation which is working to preserve the written texts of the Drupa Kagyu lineage, and the Pema Karpo Translation Committee which is translating Tibetan texts into English. In addition Tsoknyi Rinpoche is currently president of Tashi Jong; abbot of the largest nunnery in Tibet which is located in Kham in Eastern Tibet; and abbot of Chumig Gyatsa Abbey, a nunnery in Western Nepal at Muktinath. He is widely recognized as a brilliant meditation teacher and is the author of Carefree Dignity published by Rangjung Yeshe Publications.
If you would like more information about any of Tsoknyi Rinpoche's projects or to see his teaching schedule, please visit the Pundarika Foundation Website or e-mail them at Pundarika@bigfoot.com.