Lex Hixon Interviews Dudjom Rinpoche

Dudjom Jigdral Yeshe Dorje
From a collection of Lex Hixon’s WBAI “In the Spirit” Interviews

Dudjom Rinpoche was born in 1904 in the southeastern Tibetan province of Pemakö, one of the four hidden lands of Padmasabhava, and was considered a revealer of the treasures concealed there. As a Dzogchen master, he headed the ancient Nyingma lineage. He was also an astrologer, healer, poet, and scholar, and wrote several Tibetan histories. He left Tibet in 1958, establishing communities for Tibetan refugees in India and Nepal. In 1972, he visited London as the guest of Sogyal Rinpoche. He founded many Dharma centres in the West, including Dorje Nyingpo and Orgyen Samye Choling in France, and Yeshe Nyingpo and Orgyen Cho Dzong in the United States.  Dudjom Rinpoche was a householder yogin. He married twice and had 10 children, many of whom are tulkus, including his son, Shenphen Dawa Rinpoche, a well-known Western teacher. Dudjom Rinpoche settled with his family in the Dordogne center, and died there in 1987. His body lies in a stupa at his monastery in Boudanath, Nepal.

Lex Hixon: We have a very, very special visitor with us in the studio this morning, His Holiness Dudjom Rinpoche, who is the head of the oldest lineage of Tibetan Buddhism. He is 74 years old. He made a great effort to come down to the station to talk directly to you. I think it’s unique that [today], on the 200th birthday of our young country, we would have the representative of the most ancient lineage of Tibetan Buddhism appearing and speaking about the highest teachings of mind. His Holiness wants to say a few words in greeting, and then I am going to be asking him some questions. He will be responding through a translator

Dudjom Rinpoche: We are here in New York City in the United States of America at the insistence and request of a few of my disciples and many other interested followers. These are followers of dharma, particularly in the line of Guru Padmasambhava, the great Tantric teacher. And it is very auspicious that this coincides with the 200th anniversary of the founding of America. I am very happy to be here in your midst and talking to you like this.

I have been able to talk a little bit about Dharma and give a little bit of information about it. Hearing is such an important thing in meditation—the noble quality of hearing. Because of interest initiated by the talk, many followers took refuge. And also, many have received the initiation of Guru Padmasambhava and Vajrasattva, representing all Tantric deities. The meaning and the symbolism that are connected with them were taught and explained to the recipients. I felt that it did have some profound effect.

Lex Hixon at WBAI

Listen to the interview with Lex Hixon

Dudjom Rinpoche, translator and
Lex Hixon 1976 NYC

Read partial interview transcript here.


In a poem called “Everyone Is Babbling about What Happens after Death,”
Lex wrote:

The singer of this liberating song
laugh loud and long:
“We will be in the end
what we were in the beginning,
clear bubbles forming and dissolving
in the stream of timeless Mother Wisdom.”

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