Shabkar Tsogdruk Rangdrol

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Shabkar Tsogdruk Rangdrol (1781-1851)

zhabs dkar tshogs drug rang grol (1781-1851), one of the most outstanding masters of the 18th/19th century. A true proponent of the Rime (ris med) ideal who had nothing but the highest regard for the teachings and practices of all schools of Buddhism in Tibet. Born in the Rekong region of Amdo, at mdo smad reb kong zho 'ong la kha, he first met teachers of the Gelug tradition. Later he travelled to Mongolia and met his destined root teacher, Chögyal Ngakyi Wangpo (1736-1807), from whom he received many Nyingma cycles of Dzogchen teachings. Most notably among these was the cycle of rta phag yid bzhin nor bu which he practised and propagated widely all his life. Apart from that he also studied under Kagyu and Sakya masters. Shabkar was famous for his prolonged rereats in mountain solitudes, much like Jetsun Milarepa, and was even considered an emanation of his by some. Among many other places, he also spent considerable time at Kangkar Tise, Tsari and Lapchi where he did retreat in the famous Cave of the Subjugation of Mara (bdud 'dul phug mo che) of Milarepas. While there he also founded the small monastery of Chöra Gephel Ling (chos ra dge 'phel gling), which still exists today. Shabkar composed many songs of realisation and other texts. A comprehensive list of these, as well as an excellent translation of his autobiography, can be found in The Life of Shabkar (ISBN 1-55939-154-5).

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