1986-1989

1986 Nyoshul Khenpo


1987 Sogyal Rinpoche, Pema Wangyal Rinpoche, Nyoshul Khenpo and Chagdud Tulku


1988 Penor Rinpoche


1989 Nyoshul Khenpo & Dodrupchen Rinpoche


1989 His Holiness the Dalai Lama, San Jose

1986 First Australian retreat; Nyoshul Khenpo invited to retreats in Wales, France and California; Rinpoche gives plenary address to U.S. National Hospice Organization; first Kirchheim retreat, Germany, winter 1986-7.

1987 Rigpa Paris established at rue Burq; Rinpoche is invited to be director of Dzogchen Beara in Ireland; Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche visits London with Trulshik Rinpoche; summer retreat at Les Ages, with Nyoshul Khenpo, Chagdud Tulku Rinpoche, Pema Wangyal Rinpoche and Shenphen Dawa Rinpoche; Kalu Rinpoche teaches in Paris; Rigpa Germany established.

1988 Penor Rinpoche teaches Nyingtik Yabshyi for Rigpa London; first Thanksgiving retreat in Oakland; Dublin centre opens in Ireland.

1989 First Australian retreat at Tiona Park; Rigpa established in Holland; His Holiness Sakya Trizin teaches in Paris and at the Easter retreat, Cornwall UK; summer retreat in French Alps with Dodrupchen Rinpoche and Nyoshul Khenpo and Dzogchen Rinpoche.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama is invited to give Dzogchen teachings and a Padmasambhava empowerment in San Jose; Dzogchen and Padmasambhava published.


It was now ten years since Rinpoche had begun to teach in the West. By now he was meeting and having dialogues with leading scientists, artists and religious figures. In 1985-6, he was invited to Australia and Germany, and annual retreats were immediately established in both countries. Rinpoche’s brother, H.E. the seventh Dzogchen Rinpoche, made his first journey to the West, and from then on was to become a regular visitor, teaching at the centres, leading retreats and becoming adviser for Rigpa’s curriculum project and study college (shedra). In 1987 Rigpa Paris was established at rue Burq. Rinpoche was also invited to become spiritual director of the centre in Co. Cork in the west of Ireland that was to become Dzogchen Beara, Rigpa’s long-term retreat facility. The first closed one-year retreats, following a traditional Tibetan schedule of practice and study, began there in 1994.

Two events took place next that would forever stand out as landmarks in the history of Rigpa. In 1989 His Holiness the Dalai Lama gave two days’ Dzogchen teachings in San Jose, California, along with the Empowerment of Padmasambhava and his Eight Manifestations from the ‘Great Fifth’ Dalai Lama’s pure visions. Five and a half thousand people, from all traditions and from all over the United States and other countries attended in what at that time was the largest gathering of practitioners and masters of Buddhadharma in America, and possibly in the West. To mark this occasion Rinpoche wrote Dzogchen and Padmasambhava.