Working alongside Enrico Dell’Angelo the past five years to help bring about the realisation of Rinpoche’s vision for ‘One Community’ has been a sublime experience in application of Dzogchen Teachings in daily life. His immense capacity for simultaneously managing multiple complex issues, and his fluency in all matters of professional organisational life – legal, financial, project planning, human resources, etc. – allowed us to maintain a steady pace of progress on a number of projects manifesting around the world. From weekly WebEx conference calls with the International Gakyil to a steady stream of emails, skype calls and texts, there was almost no time we were not in contact during these past five years. Finding a creative partnership like the one I had with Enrico is difficult to find in any dimension of professional life. To find it with one of your Vajra Brothers and in service of your Teacher is truly something special.
Enrico had an incredible certainty about where we were going, which in this world, is rare. It is one thing to be confident and assured when provided with a well-laid out plan, but it is something quite different when you operate only from a simple, deep understanding of our Teacher’s mind and how He would expect us to deal with a constantly changing set of circumstances. For many years I have worked in service of Rinpoche and learned through trial error like everyone else to anticipate how Rinpoche would have us react to certain circumstances, and thanks to help from Fabio, Adriana and Adriano (amongst others) over the years, I learned my lessons. However, working with Enrico took this experience to another level. The issues of concern were always higher, more complicated, laced with legacy problems, encumbered with typical challenges of globalisation, languages, legality, etc. Applying the simple rules of ‘working with circumstances’ and fostering ‘One Community’ in an endeavour to connect 11 Gars and 50+ Lings together across 30 countries was a monumental task. Watching Enrico consistently rise to this challenge and repeatedly apply the mindfulness that we are taught by our Master was a perpetual source of joy. It mirrored so many challenges that I faced in my professional life for 30 years while simultaneously being a devoted Dzogchen student of Rinpoche’s. Many new insights were gained by working on the IDC & Dzamling Gar Projects with Enrico, and for this I will always be grateful. What we all try to do globally – integrating and working within the culture of the Dzogchen Community – it is really something special.
If these accomplishments were not enough, Enrico managed this taxing schedule with the International Gakyil while simultaneously restructuring the Shang Shung Foundation. He personally drafted the IDC Constitution (three times), and authored numerous fundamental IDC documents that make up our procedures and protocols, such as the Membership Regulations, Code of Use IDC Logo, Protocol for Gar & Ling Affiliation, etc. His mastery of written legal English was impressive, as was his fluency in Spanish, French and Tibetan. His combination of skills made him an ideal president for the broad and diverse Community that is IDC.
It is not my place to write an over arching narrative of Enrico’s life, as his oldest friends and family will surely take care of that, but I did want to contribute this piece of the story that showcases one of his lasting achievements. He really left a wonderful legacy for all our benefit, although it surely feels like he was taken from us many years too soon. It seems beyond coincidence that a beautifully written editorial by Enrico appears in the previous edition of the printed Mirror (No.133), as this wonderful article sums up our 5-year mission at the International Gakyil to perfection. In particular, this excerpt below:
“Dzamling Gar is the place where all members of the Dzogchen Community meet and collaborate together. It is the global-family meeting-place where all practitioners have the possibility to collaborate together and enjoy the happiness of being together on the path.
The organisational and legal work related to the establishment and development of the IDC has the same aims: to bring together the different realities of the Dzogchen Community that, up to now, had no formal connection between themselves, to improve communication, and to create the possibility to implement and coordinate the initiatives of the Dzogchen Community in a harmonious and consistent way.”
Although not all Gars and Lings are legally aligned, and our single web portal is not yet complete, the IDC Membership System (MMS), global registration of Longsal symbol and ownership structures of Dzamling Gar and Tsegyalgar West under IDC oversight have all been completed. The essence of this connective tissue that IDC is meant to represent has now been interwoven to link Rinpoche’s mandala of Gars & Lings; like the net of gold energy lines on this Dzogchen Community graphic below. For this grand achievement, to Enrico Dell’Angelo, we can all be eternally grateful.
With deep love and respect. Farewell my friend. You tightened the sails on the boat . . .
Mark Farrington, International Gakyil
On December 26, 2016, Enrico passed away suddenly in Rome after a short illness. Enrico was one of the first practitioners in the Dzogchen Community, and from the beginning dedicated himself to the activities and development of the Dzogchen Community.