I am the editor and translator of the new book Compassionate Action by Chatral Rinpoche (Coming May 2007). You can pre-order today on Amazon.
Chatral Rinpoche, now 94 years old, is one of the most revered spiritual figures in South Asia and is believed by many to be a Buddha in person. Father Thomas Merton famously remarked in 1968 that he was "the greatest man I ever met." He is the Vajra Regent of Dudjom Rinpoche's lineage and the Senior Master of the Longchen Nyingthig lineage of the Great Perfection. Like his root teacher Dudjom Rinpoche, Chatral Rinpoche's teachings are luminious and brilliant, with the potential to liberate fortunate beings on the spot.
He rescues millions of endangered animals each year and has been a strict vegetarian for over forty-five years. Now in his 90's, he is as active as ever, helping humans and animals alike with an unfathomably deep compassion.
This is the first English-language book of this living legend and includes his biography and autobiography, six of his essays, five prayers he composed, an exclusive interview, and 14 pages of photos from throughout his life.
For more information, please check out my blog entry.
Review from BuddhaDharma Magazine (Spring 2007): "Fame and renunciation rarely go hand in hand. However, in the Tibetan Buddhist world, occasionally there are hermits who become revered and renowned precisely for the integrity of their renunciation. Chatral Rinpoche, a ninety-three-year-old Nyingma master, has exemplified this tradition throughout his life. Referred to by Thomas Merton as "the greatest man I ever met" and frequently described as the greatest living Dzogchen master, Chatral Rinpoche's fame has spread despite the lack of any publications devoted to him. Now, his inspiring life and teachings are available in Compassionate Action(Snow Lion Publications, 2007), a collection of his translated teachings and compositions edited by Zach Larson. The book opens with a brief biography and continues with chapters exploring different aspects of the bodhisattva practices for which Chatral Rinpoche has become well-known, such as vegetarianism, his annual practice of freeing thousands of captured fish into the Bay of Bengal, his construction and veneration of stupas, and his training and guidance of the next generation of Nyingma lamas."
I am from a tiny town in Northwest Wisconsin and have a passion for exploring the world and expanding the mind. Through my upbringing (my dad is a liberal Christian minister, my mom a political activist), I have developed a strong interest in both religion and politics, and at the University of Wisconsin-Madison majored in "Buddhism and Politics."
I have spent two 9-month stints in South Asia, the first on the College Year in Nepal program in '99, where I had the time of my life and made many life-long friends. The second was during the 2004-05 school year where I put together a book on one of the great masters of Tibetan Buddhism, Chatral Rinpoche, by translating, editing and compiling his writings. This trip was the biggest blessing of my life, with the opportunity to meet with all of the great living masters of the Nyingma tradition of Tibetan Buddism, attend a 2 month empowerment ceremony, meet my root teacher, Shyalpa Rinpoche, and have my book published, under the title "Compassionate Action: The Teachings of Chatral Rinpoche" by Shechen Publications in New Delhi.
I now live in Brooklyn and work in the Empire State Building for a non-profit (Tanenbaum Center for Interreligious Understanding). I am getting a certificate in Book Publishing at NYU so that I can start a publishing company with my Buddhist teacher in a few years.
In May 2007, my book is being published in the West by Snow Lion Publications under the title "Compassionate Action by Chatral Rinpoche". Make sure to pre-order a copy today on Amazon or the Snow Lion Publications website!