The Dodrupchens are well-known as one of the main holders of the Longchen Nyingthig lineage. The first Dodrupchen, Jigmey Thrinley Ozer was a direct disciple of Jigmey Lingpa. After spending many years with Jigmey Lingpa, he returned to East Tibet and established a monastery at Dodrupchen. The third Dodrupchen declared that he would write extensively as a way to provide support for transmission of the lineage. Later, he was known especially for his writings in support of the system.
The text here contains a teaching given when he was quite young and shows the extent to which he understood the depths of the system even at that early age. He was asked to give some clarification of Garab Dorje's Three Lines teaching and this text is the result. This text of the Dodrupchen's is particularly interesting because it was not included in the original Collected Works of this Dodrupchen but was discovered much later and included only in recent editions of the Collected Works.
The Three Lines teaching is one of the main ways that Dzogchen view is transmitted these days. The Three Lines teaching is essentially a teaching on Thorough Cut. This can be clearly seen from Patrul's explanation of the teaching in his text called Feature of the Glorious, Expert King. In fact, Patrul's text is a pithy presentation of the way that the Dzogchen lineage transmits the meaning of Garab Dorje's Three Lines.
Dodrupchen's explanation of the Three Lines Teaching is particularly interesting because, as he himself says, the teaching does not follow the time-honoured style of explanation of Garab Dorje's teaching. It is clear from reading the text that Dodrupchen was explaining the subject from his own realization. This makes the text a particularly interesting complement to a text like Patrul's Feature of the Expert, Glorious King and we would strongly recommend that the two be read in conjunction with each other. Moreover, Dodrupchen's explanations cover important points that are not covered or not clearly covered in Patrul's text. It is for these various reasons that Lama Tony felt that this text should be translated and added to PKTC's collection of texts made specifically for the sake of Dzogchen practitioners.
One of the features of the transmission of Dzogchen in Tibet, as Lama Tony has experienced it personally, is that the teaching of Thorough Cut is never really divorced from the teaching of Direct Crossing (thogal). Therefore, it is no surprise that Dodrupchen does not stop merely with an explanation of Thorough Cut in this book but continues by showing how it connects to Direct Crossing and then gives a short teaching on the main points of Direct Crossing.
The book contains the Dodrupchen's text in English. It includes extensive notes from Lama Tony to clarify difficult points in the text, a complete glossary to help clarify the meaning of the unique terminology of the system, and the Tibetan text as well.