Shechen Buddhist Society, Croatia was founded in 2001, under the personal guidance of Shechen Rabjam Rinpoche, the grandson of Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche (1910-1991), one of the greatest masters of the twentieth century and the past head of the Nyingma lineage. There are quite a few groups in Croatia that are studying the Tibetan Buddhist teachings. Our group was formed to primarily study under the guidance of Rabjam Rinpoche as we feel a particular bond with the Shechen branch of the Nyingma lineage.
Rabjam Rinpoche was born in 1966. From the age of five he lived and studied with his illustrious grandfather, receiving all his teachings. In 1983, Dilgo Khyetnse Rinpoche built Shechen Tennyi Dargye Ling Monastery in Nepal and appointed Rabjam Rinpoche as its young abbot. The original Shechen Moanstery in Kham, eastern Tibet, was one of the six major Nyingma monasteries in Tibet and was destroyed in the Chinese cultural revolution.
Since Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche’s death in 1991, Rabjam Rinpoche has been working tirelessly to fulfill his grandfather’s vision. Rabjam Rinpoche is devoted to upholding the lineage and tradition, and to completing the many projects initated by his grandfather. He is overseeing the upbringing and education of the young incarnation (tulku) of Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche. He has a great interest in humanitarian projects and has initiated the building of several medical clinics and schools. He also plays a vital role in the preservation of the sacred arts.
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Mihajlo Pažanin, the founder of the Shechen Buddhist Society, met Rabjam Rinpoche in Nepal in 2001 through the kind assistance of the Bhutanese doctor of Tibetan medicine, Ngawang Thinley. After several meetings Rinpoche agreed to personally guide the newly formed Society and gave permission to Mihajlo to establish it. Rinpoche visited Croatia in October 2002, and gave a series of lectures together with practical instructions to different meditation practices. He again visited Croatia in October 2005 and gave teachings on Patrul Rinpoche’s “Heart Treasure of Enlightened Ones”.
The Society continues under the guidance of Rabjam Rinpoche. Our goal is to introduce our members to all elements of Buddhist teachings, especially as practiced by the Nyingma school. In addition to study, we emphasis mediation practice so that the teachings can be contemplated and integrated into one’s daily life. The “pith instructions” of the living master have a key role in helping the student develop correct understanding and practice. This is especially important in Vajrayana and Dzogchen practices, where instructions from a living teacher is essential.
The fundamental principles of the teachings are simple and transparent: liberation from all kinds of suffering for oneself and others, the development of compassion, and the achievement of authentic happiness. The practice can help students to open their eyes to more effective ways to confront problems and to overcome what is blocking their full human potention from blossoming.