We were honored and delighted to receive Mingyur Rinpoche, one of the great Buddhist teachers and meditation masters of our time, at our office in South Street last week. Mingyur Rinpoche spent two hours with BDRC staff, board members and friends discussing BDRC's essential work and the importance of textual preservation for the living Buddhist lineages.
Dr. Jann Ronis and our librarians updated Rinpoche on special new texts that have been scanned and added to our online archive. Rinpoche was happy to see our archive of Buddhist texts from various Asian traditions, in multiple languages, and noted approvingly, "All the root is the same, from the Buddha."
Mingyur Rinpoche at the BDRC office in Boston, June 13, 2022.
Mingyur Rinpoche has long recognized the value of our work and the importance of our mission: by preserving the source texts of Buddhism against dangers such as decay and theft, flood and fire, BDRC supports the transmission of the Dharma to future generations. From personal experience, Rinpoche knows how present these dangers are and how irrecoverable the loss can be. He told us that his grandfather had rare Buddhist texts (Kathang terma texts) that were destroyed in a fire—these precious texts are now lost forever. Our preservation work not only secures the source texts of Buddhism, we also make them freely available to all, at any time, for all time.
Mingyur Rinpoche kindly gave us a statement last year highlighting the importance of our archive to the Buddhist community: "The Buddhist Digital Resource Center has been an invaluable tool for me and my community. We have had moments when we suddenly realized, often in the middle of a retreat, that we needed an important text from our lineage. BDRC is the first place we look and we always manage to find what we need. I cannot imagine what we would do in those moments without this precious resource."
Rinpoche was happy to see our open-access archive of Buddhist texts from various Asian traditions, in multiple languages.
We are grateful to be the resource of choice for lamas and Buddhist masters. BDRC may be the largest online repository of Tibetan as well as Buddhist texts in the world, but our work is far from over. During Mingyur Rinpoche's visit, he mentioned that he was looking for a copy of a rare debate text titled Tsema Gyatso Thaye, by the Second Karmapa. Unfortunately, while we have many other texts by the Second Karmapa, we did not have this particular text. Clearly, there are still countless texts remaining for us to scan, catalog and add to the archive. If we are ever able to locate this particular text, we will certainly inform Mingyur Rinpoche and share a copy with him, so that he can reintroduce it to the students of his lineage!
Executive Director Jann Ronis offered Mingyur Rinpoche a Wisdom Disk containing the entire Tibetan Buddhist canon and a hard drive containing thousands of Kagyu and Nyingma texts as well as histories and hagiographies.
Professor Andrew Quintman of Wesleyan University, Chairman of the BDRC Board of Directors, was also in attendance, along with board members Michele Martin, author and translator, and Daniel Aitken, CEO of Wisdom Publications.
We are so thankful to Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche and the entire Tergar community for his visit. We wish Mingyur Rinpoche a successful North American tour.