The Tsoknyi Nuns

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Tsoknyi Lineage Nuns Update from Brady Hogan

From Brady Hogan in Nepal:

The Muktinath anis just returned from Tashi Jong, India, the seat of Khamtrul Rinpoche, Tsoknyi Rinpoche’s main teacher. They are full of enthusiasm and praise for the kindness, the excellent care and incredible teachings they were so very fortunate to receive. How is it possible that nuns receive such treatment? It is rather unheard of in the male dominated Tibetan system. There is only one reason. They are Tsoknyi Rinpoche’s nuns.

During Rinpoche’s time as president of Tashi Jong many years ago, he took such tremendous care, built desperately needed housing and bathrooms for the monks. He did so much for his Lama, Khamtrul Rinpoche, sponsoring Adeu Rinpoche to come and offer the entire 6 Yogas of Naropa to Khamtrul Rinpoche, the todgens and monks.

The collecting, compiling, endless proofing and correcting–8 years of tremendous effort and cost, making available for the first time since the cultural revolution all of the Drukpa Kagyu Lineage texts precisely and accurately. What an outrageous and most courageous endeavor; securing an entire lineage, a complete path to enlightenment and then able to offer those 108 volumes not only to your teacher but printing enough for all the Drukpa Kagyu monasteries in Tibet as well as India and Nepal. I will never know, but am certain there was great benefit reflecting the deep love he felt for another of his most special teachers, Togden Amten, and so much more.

He left his own unique footprint that is still very apparent today, and those at Tashi Jong were happy to repay his immense kindness by taking such good care of his nuns. The anis even approached the oldest of the togdens, Achu, and requested teachings. He has never, ever given teachings to the monks or laypeople of Tashi Jong or those outside of the village regardless of name or offering, but he agreed. Why? Because these are Tsoknyi Rinpoches nuns. For several months, they were held so deeply in the blessings of their Lama, while receiving teachings daily from Khamtrul Rinpoche, Togden Achu and other learned and skilled khenpos.

When visiting another nunnery in the area, while the nuns were chatting the way that nuns do, one commented on one of our ani’s robes. She proudly told them that her Lama, Tsoknyi Rinpoche, gave them not only one, but 2 sets of robes every year, winter and summer, as he does all of his nuns. The other nuns were flabbergasted, they had never heard of such treatment. Even their very highly respected khenpo at Tashi Jong told them in all of his 40 plus years as a monk, no one had ever given him robes. Everyone so appreciates the immense generosity and sincerity of Tsoknyi Rinpoche, because wherever he goes, whoever he commits to, somehow he finds the means to make a difference. A real difference in peoples lives and in their hearts.

Sometimes it’s hard to see or know the blessings that we receive as his students, but they are raining, pouring upon us nonetheless. We also share in this great fortune, this treasure house that is always open and available to us, that surrounds us and holds us in this most spacious, but profoundly strong mandala of Rinpoche. There is a saying here that a Lama’s monks and nuns are his natural adornments–and might I add the sincerity of the prayers, commitment and practice all of his students from all over the world sends a certain sparkle to his being as well.

As Rinpoche continues to broaden his responsibilities to spread the dharma, alleviate suffering and shine the light of love, may this year return to him a thousand fold, all support and care needed for all of his nuns, easing the burden that he so gracefully carries while sowing the seeds and tilling the fields of Heartland.

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