Tibet's rich and ancient culture has owed a great debt to significant individuals down the
centuries. There is now a growing body of literature in translation about these enlightened
masters and historical figures. This English translation of the condensed biography of Buton
Rinpoche is a welcome addition.
Buton Rinpoche (1290-1364) became one of Tibet's most renowned scholars and
translators. His life and work are notable for the effort he made to honour all the orders
and systems of tenets of Tibetan Buddhism.
This account of Buton Rinpoche's life by Dratshadpa Rinchen Namgyal recounts many of
his great compassionate activities. It is a source of wisdom and inspiration for Buddhist
practitioners even today.
I congratulate the translator, Hans van den Bogaert, and everyone who has
contributed to making the biography of this exemplary master available to interested persons
who do not read Tibetan.
A Handful of Flowers is a condensed biography of the 14th-century Buddhist scholar and
master, Boton Rinchen Drub. In translation it offers a valuable addition to the body of
works, rendered into English, of outstanding historical figures in the Buddhist world.
Born in the year 1290, Boton Rinpoche showed extraordinary qualities from a young
age, and grew up to become one of Tibet's greatest and most prolific scholars and
translators. Acting always out of boundless compassion, and with inestimable wisdom, he
worked tirelessly for the liberation of all sentient beings. He became known as the Lord of
Zhalu-amongst other eminent titles-Zhalu being the location of his principal monastery and
This biography was composed as a hymn of praise to his master by the monk-disciple
Dratshadpa Rinchen Namgyal. It has been ably translated into English by Hans van den
Bogaert, who is to be commended for his devotion and the thoroughness of his endeavors. May
the merit gained by publishing this inspirational life-story be shared among all sentient
beings, and bring them benefit.
Back of the Book
This condensed biography, a Handful of Flowers, was composed in praise of Buton Rinchen
Drub, one of Tibet's most outstanding scholars, who lived from 1290 to 364. known as the
'Lord of Zhalu' Zhalu being the location of his principal monastery-this unique master was
a prolific translator into Tibetan of the Buddha's teachings, as well as a supremely wise
and compassionate teacher who worked tirelessly to bring all beings to liberation.
His close disciple, Dratshadpa Rinchen Namgyal, wrote this work out of a strong
faith and devotion in his master. In it he relates many of the wondrous events of Buton
Rinpoche's virtuous life and deeds. Students of the Buddhadharma will find much inspiration
and encouragement in the pages of this book. This fascinating work also vividly conveys a
sense of the historical period in which Buton Rinpoche lived and taught in Tibet.
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