With deep sadness, we announce the passing of Sogyal Rinpoche on Wednesday 28 August 2019, following complications during his cancer treatment.
Sogyal Rinpoche rested in tukdam for three days, which is when a realized practitioner continues to abide by the recognition of the nature of mind after the moment of death.
Sogyal Rinpoche was a world-renowned Buddhist teacher from Tibet, recognized as the incarnation of a great master and visionary saint of the nineteenth century, Tertön Sogyal Lerab Lingpa. He founded the international Buddhist network Rigpa, of which Dzogchen Beara is a part, was the author of The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying, and dedicated over 45 years to bringing the Buddhist teachings to the West. He stepped down as spiritual director in 2017.
His students have now entered a traditional period of prayers and ceremonies that will extend over at least seven weeks. In Tibetan Buddhism, the period of forty-nine days following the moment of death is considered to be the most powerful time for spiritual practice.
We are deeply touched by the outpouring of condolences and recognition of Sogyal Rinpoche and his work, and of sincere kindness and fraternity towards the Rigpa Sangha, from members of the public, lamas and friends from around the world.
Since Rigpa was founded, over 80 renowned teachers from all schools of Tibetan Buddhism and other Buddhist traditions, have been teaching in Rigpa and guiding the study and practice of Rigpa students, at the invitation of Sogyal Rinpoche. Rigpa upholds in particular the Nyingma tradition, the oldest school of Tibetan Buddhism, and offers the Buddhist teachings of meditation, compassion and wisdom to the modern world.
5 September, 2019
Many students of Sogyal Rinpoche are grieving and remembering his accomplishments and contributions in bringing the Buddha’s teachings to the West, particularly through The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying, and the teachings he gave around the world over the last 40 years.
Rigpa acknowledges that this may also be a difficult period for past and present members of the Rigpa community who have experienced hurt, and wishes to express again our deepest apologies. We continue our process of healing and reaching out, and the reforms that Rigpa has taken over the past two years.
We also wish to express our gratitude for all the support and condolences we are receiving at this time.