I have posted most of this information as comments on another page, but I thought I should introduce myself more formally and completely to this community for anyone who is interested.
Basically I've joined this community because I am interested in sharing and hearing other peoples ideas and experiences in Buddhism and any other form of spirituality. So here's a little about me:
I am a 19 year old living in Portland Oregon. I have just recently become active in my buddhist practice (primarily the chod and phowa).
I live in the Nityananda Institute at the Rudrananda Ashram. The Institute practices shaiva/kundalini yoga as well as tantric buddhist rituals, from a nyingma lineage.
Our lineage-holder is Swami Chetanananda, a decendant of Swami Rudrananda and Swami Nityananda from the shaiva/trika yoga/kundalini yoga tradition. Our Swamiji has also been ordained as a Buddhist Nyingma lineage holder by Lama Wangdu Rinpoche.
Here is a brief biography of Wangdulama for your information:
"Lama Tsering Wangdu Rinpoche was born in 1936 in the village of Langkor in West Dingri, Tibet. West Dingri was the area where the great Indian mahasiddha Padampa Sangye stayed when he came to Tibet to transmit teaching on Shi-je, or pacification of suffering. Rinpoche is a lineage holder of the teachings of Padampa Sangye as well as the ENTIRE cycle of the Longchen Nyingthig tradition of the Nyingma school of Tibetan Buddhism. He completed the traditional Chöd retreat in Tibet, practicing in 100 cremation grounds. In the late 1950's he resettled in Nepal, where he resided for many years in the Tibetan refugee community of Jawalakehl in Kathmandu. He met Swami Chetanananda in Kathmandu in 1998, and has shared many of his practices with Swamiji and with students at the Nityananda Institute.
Rinpoche is now head of the Pal Gyi Dingri Langkor Jangsem Kunga Ling monastery in Boudha, Kathmandu. He is a profoundly accomplished practitioner, and we are pleased to share these performances of his practices with a wider audience. " - taken from http://www.rudrapress.com/teachers/rinpoche.htm
a better biography of Wangdulama and Swamiji can be found on www.nityananda-institute.org
Here is information on the Nyingma Tradition that I pulled from Wikipedia.
"The Nyingma tradition is one of the four major schools of Tibetan Buddhism. These four schools are Nyingma, Kagyu, Sakya and Gelug. Nyingma is actually comprised of several distinct lineages that trace their origins back to Padmasambhava, the legendary founder of Tibetan Buddhism. The name "Nyingma" means ancient, as Nyingma followers see themselves as maintaining the earliest Vajrayana teachings (the other three traditions are collectively known as Sarma or "new translation" schools) which incorporate some elements of the indigenous Bön religion."
"The Nyingma-school is also called the school of the ancient translations because it developed out of the first translation-period of Buddhist scriptures from Sanskrit into Tibetan, during the time of Trisong Detsen in the eighth century. In 817, King Trisong Detsen invited the indic Masters Padmasambhava (Sanskrit for "lotusborn"), also called Guru Rinpoche ("precious Master") and the abbot Shantarakshita (Tibetan Shiwatso) to Tibet in order to introduce Buddhism in the Land of Snows. King Trisong Detsen ordered the translation of the whole Buddhist teaching (dharma) into Tibetan. Guru Rinpoche, Shantarakshita and 108 translators, thereof 25 of Guru Rinpoche's nearest disciples worked for many years in a gigantic translation-project. The translations from this period formed the base for the large scriptural transmission of dharma-teachings into Tibet. Guru Rinpoche supervised mainly the translation of tantric doctrine; Shantarakshita concentrated on the Sutra-teachings. From this basis Buddhism was established in its entirety in Tibet. From the 8th until the 11th century Nyingma was the only school of Buddhism in Tibet. With the reign of King Langdarma (government-period 836–842) Buddhism declined in its outer form and a time of political instability took place for 300 years in Tibet. From the 11th century onwards, four schools developed out of a new translation-period. They are the Kadampa, Kagyu, Sakya and Gelug-school of Tibetan Buddhism. Guru Rinpoche and Shantarakshita founded the first Buddhist monastery Samye on Tibetan ground. It was the main center for dharma-transmission in Tibet during this age."
Besides Guru Rinpoche - other famous lineage holders of the Nyingma are Yeshe Tsyogal, Machig Lapdron, Padampa Sengye, Longchenpa , Jigme Lingpa (He's the guy I use for my icon), Patrul Rinpoche (who wrote "The Words of My Perfect Teacher") and others. I am currently researching Lama Wangdu's direct line, which I know includes all these teachers but I have yet to connect all the dots.
Sorry if that was a lot of information. I love history ( ;
If you have any questions for me just ask.
Its good to be here. ( ;