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Compassionate Action [Paperback]

Chatral Rinpoche , Zach Larson
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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Book Description

April 4 2007
Chatral Rinpoche, the quintessential "hidden yogi," has been a legend in the Himalayan region for the past seventy years. Although he has never traveled to the West, his amazing story and teachings have gradually been infiltrating the Western Buddhist consciousness since Father Thomas Merton first met him in 1968 and famously remarked that he was "the greatest man I ever met." This is the first English-language book of this living legend; it includes his biography and autobiography, six of his essays, five prayers he composed, an exclusive interview, and sixteen pages of photos from throughout his life.

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Thar Lam This book provides a series of inspiring insights into the beliefs of someone who has devoted more than eight decades to the intensive practice of Dharma and who has little time for the many ways in which people fool themselves - while at the same time caring passionately about their development towards an enlightened state. (Thar Lam This)

About the Author

Chatral Rinpoche, a yogi in his 90s, is one of the greatest meditation masters and most compassionate bodhisattvas in the history of Tibetan Buddhism. He is one of the most revered spiritual figures in South Asia.

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Format:Paperback
"Kyabje Chatral Rinpoche studied under some of the greatest masters of the previous century, and ranks today as the senior-most teacher of the Dzogchen lineage. He is renowned throughout the Tibetan community as a steadfast guardian of the Buddhist tradition and a highly accomplished, legendary adept, who--like the great sages and hermits of the past--has spent much of his life in retreat, practicing meditation and granting teachings only sparingly to a few committed disciples.

"It is truly wonderful therefore that we now have this precious collection of his teachings and advice capably translated into English, enabling many more people to benefit from his boundless wisdom and compassion. Here, in these poetic writings and recorded interviews, Rinpoche imparts his instructions in a forthright and elegant style and reveals his deep commitment to Buddhist ethics, his dedication to non-violence and preserving life, and above all, his total dedication to the authentic teachings of Lord Buddha and Guru Padmasambhava."

--Sogyal Rinpoche, author of The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying.
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Amazon.com: 4.8 out of 5 stars  8 reviews
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Endorsement by Sogyal Rinpoche April 18 2007
By Zachary J. Larson - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
"Kyabje Chatral Rinpoche studied under some of the greatest masters of the previous century, and ranks today as the senior-most teacher of the Dzogchen lineage. He is renowned throughout the Tibetan community as a steadfast guardian of the Buddhist tradition and a highly accomplished, legendary adept, who--like the great sages and hermits of the past--has spent much of his life in retreat, practicing meditation and granting teachings only sparingly to a few committed disciples.

"It is truly wonderful therefore that we now have this precious collection of his teachings and advice capably translated into English, enabling many more people to benefit from his boundless wisdom and compassion. Here, in these poetic writings and recorded interviews, Rinpoche imparts his instructions in a forthright and elegant style and reveals his deep commitment to Buddhist ethics, his dedication to non-violence and preserving life, and above all, his total dedication to the authentic teachings of Lord Buddha and Guru Padmasambhava."

--Sogyal Rinpoche, author of The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars understandable and important July 21 2007
By Elevate Difference - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
As a new Buddhist practitioner, though in the Nichiren tradition, not the Nyingma tradition of Chatral Rinpoche, I am in a process of reading the works of many revered Buddhist teachers and practitioners. Compassionate Action by Chatral Rinpoche, and edited by Zach Larson, provides wonderful insight into the diversity of the Tibetan Buddhist tradition through a series of essays, interviews, prayers and photographs. I read it cover to cover on a flight from New York to Chicago.

The highlight of Compassionate Action for me was his explanation of one of his most well known actions. He releases 70 truckloads of fish from the market in Calcutta annually, an action that allows the live caught fish to re-enter life with a greater possibility of being born into Dharma practice and ultimately attain liberation. In an interview, he details his reasoning behind the sign that hangs in his monastery: "In this Buddhist monastery the consumption of meat, alcoholic beverages, and tobacco as well as playing cards or gambling is strictly prohibited." Citing the early teachings of the Buddha, and eventually basing his ideas on the laws of cause and effect, he simply notes the negative influence of both killing and not taking action to prevent the killing of other beings has on our own spiritual lives. Chatral Rinpoche is committed in his practices and beliefs around the preservation of all life -- insect, animal and human.

In the West we most often hear of the Dalai Lama as the foremost representative of Tibetan Buddhism. Chatral Rinpoche has taken a different approach to his practice of the Dharma than the Dalai Lama. While the Dalai Lama makes great efforts to travel and teach as many as will listen all across the world, Chatral Rinpoche offers teachings to very few people, often only a few of those who have spent a minimum of six years at his monastery. He is a part of a complex system of lineage that has developed for centuries in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. In the end, I am still a bit confused about the exact meaning of it all, who is an "emanation" of whom, but appreciate the overall reverence for spiritual ancestry.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I Love This Book! Sept. 7 2007
By R. Adkins - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I've read many dharma books in the last few years, and this is one of my two favorites. Chatral Rinpoche is an amazing teacher, one whose impact on the Buddhist world will be felt for many generations to come. I knew very little about him before, but after reading COMPASSIONATE ACTION I now have profound respect for him and the good work he does for all living beings.

Zach Larson has done a wonderful job editing the book. It's clear and concise, and full of great stories about Rinpoche's life and times. There are also many photos of Rinpoche, his family, and other eminent teachers. Included in the text of the book are several teachings given by Rinpoche that I found deeply moving.

I highly recommend COMPASSIONATE ACTION. It's a book that you'll easily read several times.

Oh, my other favorite is WORDS OF MY PERFECT TEACHER. I'll have both of these books with me for the remainder of this life time.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended especially for students and practitioners of Buddhism. July 8 2007
By Midwest Book Review - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Compassionate Action is the first English-language book of Himalayan yogi Chatral Rinpoche, who has influenced Western Buddhist consciousness for decades and was dubbed "the greatest man I ever met" by Father Thomas Merton in 1968. Presenting Chatral Rinpoche's biography and autobiography, six of his essays, five prayers that he wrote, an exclusive interview, and color photographs from the different phases of his life, Compassionate Action is a "must-read" for anyone seeking to learn from this quintessential wise and holy man. "Conscious abstention from hunting and killing living beings, besides inspiring others to do the same, are actions behooving the kind-hearted and pious. For instance, the milk of human kindness requires us to not harm migratory birds in any way, such as casting stones or nets or shooting them while they are resting for brief moments in the course of their long journey from one country or continent to another. On the contrary, we should provide help to them in all possible ways before they reach their final destination." Highly recommended especially for students and practitioners of Buddhism.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Very Important Book! May 25 2007
By Jonah Tuviah Geffen - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
In a world where those who speak for peace and compassion are given little publicity and even less respect, books such as this one become even more necessary. The words of Chatral Rinpoche provide deep spitirual lessons that resonate powerfully, even with those of us who are not followers of Tibetan Buddhism. I believe this book is a great asset to the world and highly reccomend it!
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