The Nyingma (ancient) school of Tibetan or Vajrayana Buddhism was founded in the eighth century by the great enlightened Indian tantric master Padmasambhava, “the second Buddha,” and is the oldest of the four schools of Tibetan Buddhism (Nyingma, Kagyu, Sakya, and Gelugpa). Its teachings, transmissions and lineage of enlightened masters have continued unbroken to this day.
At the heart of the Nyingma tradition is the practice of Dzog Chen, the most ancient and direct stream of wisdom within the teachings of Buddhism. Mipham Rinpoche (1846–1912), one of Tibet’s greatest scholars and masters, wrote:
Crowning the banner of the complete teaching of the Buddha, is the beautiful ornament of the clear light teachings of Dzogpa Chenpo.
Through practicing and realizing these teachings, tens of thousands of beings have become enlightened. Although the Nyingma school is the oldest tradition of Tibetan Buddhism, its Dzog Chen teachings are the clearest, most effective and relevant to the needs of beings today. Untouched by the sometimes tragic events in Tibetan history, the Dzog Chen teachings have been passed down in an unbroken line from the Primordial Buddha Samantabhadra, teacher to student, to this day, in all their freshness, immediacy, and power.
Dzog Chen is a state, the primordial state, the state of total awakening that is the heart essence of all the Buddhas and all spiritual paths, the summit of an individual beings spiritual evolution.
Dzog Chen can only be understood and fully realized with the direct guidance of a qualified and experienced Dzog Chen master.