Photographs of Patrul Rinpoche?

Left Patrul Rinpoche Statue

Enlightened Vagabond is a book that I have had the good fortune to have worked on and translated. It contains over one hundred stories about the life and teachings of Dza Patrul Rinpoche (1808 – 1887). This perfect model of a genuine spiritual master spent most of his life as a wandering hermit, giving teachings wherever he went.

Over the past 35 years, I have been collecting these stories that have been transmitted orally by masters, some of whom actually met the direct disciples of Patrul Rinpoche. The book includes these stories and excerpts from two of his biographies.

To make the experience richer for the reader, the book has photographs of the places where Patrul Rinpoche lived, taught, and spent time in retreat. Unfortunately, there are no photographs of Patrul Rinpoche himself, but there is a statue made by two of his close followers that is said to be a good likeness of him.

The book also includes photographs of two masters who were later recognized as incarnations of Patrul Rinpoche: Tsö Patrul (late nineteenth to early twentieth century), a lama from the region of Tsö in Amdo, and Patrul Namkha Jigme (who died in 1961), who was the son of Tertön Dudjom Lingpa and the brother of the 3rd Dodrupchen, Jigme Tenpai Nyima.

Both these photographs have been published on the Internet incorrectly claiming that they are of Patrul Rinpoche himself. However, they are not. The closest we come to a likeness of the great master is the statue pictured below.

Englightened Vagabond

By Matthieu Ricard, Published by Shambhala Publications

A Review of the Book by Jacqueline Gens