Tsoknyi Rinpoche’s Journey as a Tulku

“One day, we received from Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche a letter that said Khamtrul Rinpoche from India would like me, Tsoknyi Rinpoche, to come to India and study,” remembers Tsoknyi Rinpoche. “It was very difficult. I came to the monastery at the age of twelve. All the other Rinpoches came at the age of eight. So there was a big gap of studying, and so I had to work hard to catch up.

And I was a very playful kind of boy. A lot of spark. A lot of strength. Very strong compassion. A very energetic person. So when I was at Tashi Jong – I was studying, studying, studying – somehow all this spark went out. So much mental activity, and thought, concentration.

So I had a big problem, actually. I didn’t understand so much at that time. Later, I reflected back: I wasn’t that happy.

Many tulkus, many monks and nuns have a problem, I think, if they don’t get the inside thing, if they’re just stuck with technique, stuck with the basic things, without liberation inside. I’m not saying I liberated everything, but I caught something from them, my masters.

So then I could again connect with my young child ‘spark,’ and then with all the techniques, all the education – these things together are wonderful. But if you’re connected with your well-being without education, that’s also very difficult. So now I really appreciate what I went through.”

Tsoknyi Rinpoche’s new book OPEN HEART, OPEN MIND: Awakening the Power of Essence Love is available now in book stores everywhere.