Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche was born into a noble Tibetan family in Northern India. His father was the 3rd incarnation of the great tertön Chogyur Lingpa, while Rinpoche’s first teacher, his mother, was a great and renowned practitioner, completing 13 years of solitary retreat before she married, and continuing her retreat schedule of four sessions a day while simultaneously raising 5 children. At the age of nine, Rinpoche was recognized as an incarnation of Jamgon Kongtrul Lodro Thaye, by Kyabje Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche and the 16th Gyalwang Karmapa. Raised in a monastic environment, Rinpoche received extensive training in all aspects of Buddhist doctrine. In particular he received the teachings of the Nyingma lineage from his root teacher, H.H. Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche. Rinpoche also studied extensively under Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche, Nyöshul Khen Rinpoche and the great scholar Khenpo Rinchen.
In 1989 Rinpoche moved to the United States with his family and in 1990 began five-year tenure as a professor of Buddhist philosophy at Naropa Institute. During that time Rinpoche founded Mangala Shri Bhuti, an organization established to further the study and practice of the Nyingma lineage of the Buddhadharma in the West and particularly the Rimé tradition, which Rinpoche has a close connection. Rinpoche is the author of three books, It’s Up to You: The Practice of Self-Reflection on the Buddhist Path, Light Comes Through: Buddhist Teachings on Awakening to our Natural Intelligence,and Uncommon Happiness: The Path of the Compassionate Warrior. He is also an avid painter in the abstract expressionist tradition, and a photographer – bearing witness to moments of life around him as he travels. Rinpoche travels widely throughout the world teaching and furthering his own education.