White Tara

As I passed the time of day with Heather and Jason, I found myself telling them a story about the White Tara image that was said to have spoken to Khyentse Wangpo, which was kept in Khyentse Rinpoche’s personal shrine room. Heather, very sensibly, asked me what she said, but, as you will already have predicted, if I ever knew I’ve now forgotten. But I did remember a wonderful moment in 2006 involving White Tara, Khyentse Rinpoche and Sogyal Rinpoche.

Sogyal Rinpoche was staying in Bir and Khyentse Rinpoche, a most gracious host, took him on a tour of his home. Those of you who know Sogyal Rinpoche won’t be surprised to learn that he really lit up when we came to Dzongsar Khyentse’s shrine room, and was particularly thrilled to see the original White Tara painting once more, a photo of which he had printed thousands of times and distributed all over the world. Many of Khyentse Rinoche’s things are familiar to Sogyal Rinpoche, who knew them first when they were in Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö’s care, and seeing them again is always a moving experience for him.

As we all gazed at Tara, ooing and ahing and oggling, Sogyal Rinpoche told us a little about her, finishing with the words, “She is said to have spoken to Khyentse Wangpo.” Although we had heard this story before, more than once, standing before her and in such company invoked a moment of awed silence, that was broken, with impeccable timing, by Khyentse Rinpoche, who said, somewhat indignantly, “Well, she’s never spoken to me!”

Anyway, having enjoyed introduced you to Penelope, I’ve decided to start posting photos of other people I bump into up here in Bir, and so you’ll find below a rather hastily taken snap of Jason with Rinpoche, and a rather less explicit one of Heather receiving blessings from Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö’s stupa…

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