Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche was a well-known buddhist teacher and yogi, and was at one point the head of the Nyingma tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. I had heard about his larger than life reputation, but when I read his autobiography Brilliant Moon: The Autobiography of Dilgo Khyentse, I started to really wonder how he was able to do so much within one life time. He spent some 20 years in retreat, authored 12 large commentaries on Buddhist philosophy, and the whole time was receiving teachings, initiations, or giving them, and building monasteries. It seemed like he never rested and lived a life compassion and service for others.
Non-sectarian and Encompassing
Dilgo Khyentse had teachers from all the traditions of Tibetan Buddhism, making him one of the most reknown rime practitioners to come out of Tibet and was heavily influential in the west. He was a main teacher to His Holiness the Dalai Lama and many other influential lamas that came to the west. By many accounts, Dilgo Khyentse was the embodiment of the result of practice, a fully enlightened being.
Clearing the Way
Within Tibet, reading the biographies of great practitioners has been a long-held tradition, and the more I read and learn about these great practitioners, I start to get a sense why this is emphasized. Reading and learning about these inspiring teachers and practitioners helps remove some non-productive and negative states of mind like doubt and feeling of inability to practice and replaces them with stronger single pointed concentration, joyful effort and generally more light and virtuous states of mind.
Here is a documentary which shows a glimpse into the life of this great lama with narration by Richard Gere.