Zurchungpa's Eighty Chapters of Personal Advice was the final teaching given by the great Nyingma master Zurchung Sherab Trakpa before he passed away. His counsels are the distillation of a lifetime's experience and comprise the practical instructions of a master who had made the teachings of the Great Perfection truly part of himself. The original text consists of almost 580 maxims, organized into eighty chapters covering the entire path of Dzogchen, from fundamental teachings on devotion and renunciation, through to a whole series of pith instructions that bring the Dzogchen view to life. Much of the meaning of these pithy, often cryptic, instructions could be lost on the reader without the help of the notes Shechen Gyaltsap Rinpoche provided in his annotated edition, which he based on the explanations he received from his own teacher, Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo.
This book contains a complete detailed teaching on Zurchungpa's text by Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, based on Shechen Gyaltsap's notes. Originally intended as essential instructions for a group of practitioners in three-year retreat, it will undoubtedly serve as an indispensable guide to anyone who seriously wishes to practice the Great Perfection.
Zurchung Sherab Trakpa (1014–1074) was a key teacher in the Zur tradition, one of the handful of kama lineages through which the teachings of the Ancient Tradition were transmitted from master to disciple, beginning with Guru Padmasambhava and Vimalamitra, right down to the Nyingma masters of the present day. He was a learned scholar and accomplished meditation master who spent many years in retreat, practicing the teachings of the Great Perfection.
Shechen Gyaltsap Rinpoche (1871–1926) was an important disciple of Jamyang Khyentse Wangpo the Great and one of Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche's root teachers. An accomplished meditator, he was also one of the most respected scholars of his day, whose writings fill thirteen volumes.
"When I think of Zurchungpa for his great scholarship, years of practice in solitary retreats, and for his great wisdom, compassion, and charisma to lead countless students of all levels, my mind naturally goes to Dilgo Khentse Rinpoche. He must have been someone like him. This book enshrines the living experience and heart of two truly realized masters, translated by people who not only understand but also practice the teachings." —Ringu Tulku
"An extraordinary guide to authentic spiritual practice, combining the wisdom of three of the greatest masters of the Tibetan tradition." —Matthieu Ricard
"Among the senior Tibetan teachers in our generation, it is well known that Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche's commentaries are not merely scholarly explanations but interpretations coming directly from the depth of his own personal experience. This wonderful text by Zurchungpa is further enriched by his remarkable commentary." —Shechen Rabjam Rinpoche
"It is impossible to read this work with an open mind and heart without being deeply affected by the realized wisdom found on its pages. If we do not yet possess the deep trust or faith that makes our encounter with the Dharma fruitful, this book has all the qualities necessary to ripen our mind to the point where it can readily 'mingle' with the Dharma, as Dilgo Rinpoche put it." —Georg Feuerstein, PhD