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Being Guru Rinpoche

Being Guru Rinpoche 

A Commentary on Nuden Dorje's Terma Vidyadhara Guru Sadhana

Finding yourself through identification with the guru

by James Low 

"Being Guru Rin poche" shows how to use a traditional Tibetan Buddhist meditation text as a method for transforming daily experience into an unbroken flow of wisdom and compassion. The ritual focuses on living within the mandala of Padmasambhava, also known as Guru Rinpoche, becoming inseperable from the guru in his eight manifestations. The root text is from the terma tradition of Chhimed Rigdzin Lama (known as C.R.Lama), one of the great Nyingma lamas of the modern period. For those in any tradition of Tibetan Buddhism the commentary illuminates the use of symbolism as a method of transforming samsara into nirvana. For the general reader it provides a way of revisioning personal identity and purpose.

"It is wonderful to see the wisdom of Tibet assimilated in a meaningful way, eloquently expressed with personal and cultural relevance, by a yogi who knows and embodies it. Guru Rinpoche is evidently thriving in Europe." Keith Dowman.

This are James Low teachings given on two weekend seminars in South Germany, long waited for, and now available edited in book form, the commentary about the main practice of all seminars and retreats with the Late H.H. Chhimed Rigdzin Rinpoche: The Vidydhara Guru Sadhana, or well known as The Big Rigdzin, a tantric, very comprehensive and all-embracing tsog puja and terma by Nuden Dorje and Chhimed Rigdzin Lama.

James Low began studying and practicing Tibetan Buddhism in India in the 1960's. He received teachings from Kalu Rinpoche, Chatral Rinpoche, Kanjur Rinpoche and Dudjom Rinpoche. Having met his root teacher, Chhimed Rigdzin Lama (also known as C R Lama), he lived in his home in Bengal for many years, serving him as required and being taught many aspects of the tradition. During this period in India James did several retreats and pilgrimages in the Himalayas. In the 1970's and 1980's, on his return to Europe, he also had teachings and guidance from Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche.

James translated many tantric texts and sadhanas with C R Lama, who wanted texts from the lineages of Byangter and Khordong to be available in English. These were used as practice texts by C R Lama's disciples. Many have since been translated by others into various European languages.

C. R. Lama asked James to teach in 1976 and later gave him the transmissions necessary to do this, together with full lineage authority.

James is regularly teaching the principles of dzogchen in various places in Europe. He continues to publish translations and commentaries from time to time.

James currently works as a Consultant Psychotherapist in a National Health Service teaching hospital in London and has a private psychotherapy practice. He has taught on many psychotherapy trainings in Britain.

His recent publications are:
Being Right Here: The Mirror of Clear Meaning (Snow Lion Publications, 2004) Also available in German and Polish.
Simply Being: Texts in the Dzogchen Tradition (Wisdom Books, 1998). Also available in German and French.
The Yogins of Ladakh: A Pilgrimage Among the Hermits of the Buddhist Himalayas With John Crook. (Motilal Banarsidass, 1997) Reprinting 2006.

A website making available some of James' work will open in 2006 at the address:

More informations about him you will find here.

About the Book

Being Guru Rinpoche is a translation of a Tibetan ritual text in the Nyingmapa tradition, with commentary. The original is a 'terma' or hidden treasure of Guru Rinpoche (Padmasambhava), discovered in the nineteenth century by Nuden Dorje, revealed publicly by Chhimed Rigdzin Rinpoche in the early 1980s.

The transformative process of tantric meditation is illustrated here through the interplay of a traditional ritual text with a modern commentary. This profound method evokes not just an improvement in one's personal qualities but also a fundamental shift in the way one experiences oneself in the world with others. Through symbolic and actual identification with the pure form of Guru Rinpoche, also known as Padmasambhava, we are freed from the hooks of our familiar assumptions and habitual activities. Just as a holiday can take us out of ourselves and lets us see our lives with fresh eyes, so the practice which this book presents, offers us an opportunity to look at ourselves anew, revealing the infinite in the ordinary.

The commentary provides background information contextualizing the practice in relation to Indian culture, Buddhist philosophy and the complexity of modern culture. It shows how the profundity of the Buddhist view is brought into lived experience through opening to the drama of aesthetic engagement.

Three stages of guided meditation are covered. The preliminaries prepare us by linking us with the lineage of practitioners stretching back over a thousand years. The main section describes the development of the mandala of eight forms of Guru Rinpoche as a means of transforming static defensive identity into a responsive flow of emergent possibilities. Being 'reborn' as the deity one experiences the arising and passing of forms within the open space of emptiness which is our true nature. With this primordial spaciousness experienced though divine forms in the mandala we recognize that our own everyday existence has this very same nature. The concluding section deals with the stabilization of this wisdom as compassionate being in the world.

How to get

We, the German Khordong association, do offer this book now for 20 Euro plus postage (and money transfer cost thereby incurred). Please send an eMail to edition (ad)  khordong (dot) net for your order and your address.

Postage: inside Germany 2 EUR, outside Germany 5 EUR (for cheapest not-insured shipping at your own risk).

Trafford Publishing, 292 pages; quality trade paperback (softcover); contains images; catalogue #06-0162; ISBN 1-4120-8407-5; US$26.00, C$29.90, EUR21.36, £14.95

Our German bank account of the publication brunch is at:
Account holder: Khordong e.V.
Account no.: 324755802
Bank name: Deutsche Bank
BLZ: 100 700 24
Intern. Bank Account No.(IBAN): DE29100700240324755802
Address of bank: Deutsche Bank, Filiale Berlin-Kreuzberg, Mehringdamm 48, D-10961 Berlin
Take care that we receive your address and the full amount of money as the money transfer cost are not included in the price. Quick and cheap is ‘swift’ transfer (about 5 Euro) or "Euro transaction" free inside Euro zone.

We are able to accept credit card payment through PAYPAL Service. Send it to andreas (at) khordong (dot) net or ask for an paypal invoice sent to you.

We only deliver after advanced payment!

A n d r e a s   R u f t, D-10997 Berlin, Oppelner Str. 28, phone: +49-30-283 32 76, eMail: andreas (at) khordong (dot) net

The book will be also available with Wisdom Books, London:
or at Trafford, Canada:

If you order with Khordong e.V. you support our publication house edition khordong, which is planning to publish further books by James Low and other related titles.



The Khordong Association in Germany was founded through the inspiration of H.H. Chhimed Rigdzin Rinpoche and has existed as a society since 1993. In 1996 the society was registered and in February 1999 recognized as a charitable society.

The support and the practice of Tibetan-buddhist meditation, especially the tradition of H.H. Chhimed Rigdzin Rinpoche is the central aim of the society. Although the society is, with about 45 members, quite small, it represents a circle of interests, which extend beyond our country.

In August 2001 we decided to create within our association a publishing house, to publish especially texts of this tradition and to provide a facility for making this texts available in an appropriate form. It is also planned to publish teachings and translations of the main disciples of Chhimed Rigdzin Rinpoche.

With this publication, again in English language, for the first time we worked together with a well known publisher of Buddhist texts in the USA, through which this treasury text becomes widely available, beyond the limitation of our small associations possibilities.

A n d r e a s   R u f t, D-10997 Berlin, Oppelner Str. 28, phone: +49-30-283 32 76, Email: andreas (at) khordong (dot) net
or through our website: here

Further planned publications:
James Low, Teachings on the Butterlamp Prayer, Geneva and Darnkow
Tulku Tsurlu, Commentary of Gonpo Zangthal
and others...

*** 06/2006 ar

Aktuelle Seite: Home edition James Low Being Guru Rinpoche