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The lord of the wheel of the infinite ocean

of the three roots,

The sole refugee of limitless sentient beings,

The unrivalled knowledge holder

of the three times,

I supplicate at the feet of Tsoknyi Öser.

THE FIRST INCARNATION

The first Tsoknyi Öser was born in a place called Dewa Tang, Kyodrak in the twelfth sexagenary cycle of the Fire Snake Year, 1737, to a father named Kharpa Puntsok. Having been endowed with the characteristics of the excellent ones from a young age and with a great interest in virtuous activities, he went on pilgrimage to central Tibet.

Thus, he met the Thirteenth Karmapa Düdül Dorjé (1733/34–1797/98)[1] and received many spiritual instructions. [At that time,] the Karmapa recognised him as the emanation of Chöjé Lingpa (1682–1720)[2] and performed many activities including this prophecy: “Since your future disciples and beneficial activities are in Kyodrak, go there and benefit them. In the future, you will be more valuable than others for the Barom teachings.” As such, the Karmapa bestowed upon him the name Tsoknyi Öser. Having returned home, he received the complete instructions of the liberating methods of the victorious Barom tradition from Saljé Chödrub Senggé. Subsequently, as there had only been black yak-haired tents in the encampment of Kyodrak, he built a fort called Pur Khang in 1779. There he conducted meditational practices, rituals, and offerings.

In the Wood Dog Year, 1785, of the thirteenth sexagenary cycle, Tsoknyi Öser constructed Kyodrak Monastery’s new assembly hall along with the representations of the enlightened body, speech, and mind. His enlightened activities spread and flourished: He established the tradition of Chöjé Lingpa’s revealed treasure teachings. He became the object of worship for the people of China, Tibet, and Mongolia. He [built] innumerable and invaluable representations of the enlightened body, speech, and mind and established retreat centres at multiple hermitages. In brief, he greatly spread and proliferated the teachings of both theory and practice such as the dances, mask dances, and melodies in accordance with the traditions of previous knowledge holders. As such, Kyodrak Monastery installed him on the vajra throne, and everyone highly respected him as a great being and holder of the teachings.

THE SECOND INCARNATION

The second Tsoknyi was born to a father named Wön Tenzin Norbu and a mother named Sönam Drönma who was the chieftainess of Tsang Sar. He was recognised by the Fifth Dung Kar Śrī Bhadra of Kyodrak, who named him Karma Tsewang Künkhyab. He achieved the primordial wisdom of the aural lineage as he was primarily focused on meditation practice.

Due to his yogic observances, he established everything he saw or heard onto the path of liberation. Certain aspects such as the dates of his birth and death are not available. In the end, he died at the age of sixty[3] and attained the rūpakāya, the form body.

THE THIRD INCARNATION

The third incarnation was born with a number of wondrous signs in the lower part of the Sengge district in Kham in the Earth Male Mouse year, 1828. His father was named Orgyen Gönpo and his mother Drongza Lhamo Dröl.

Shugu Tendar, a monk from Kyodrak, knowledgeable in medicine and astrology, named him saying: “Since this child has good astrological signs, the name Tashi Tsegon should be given to him.” 

Since he was the descendent of the dignitary Lhagyari, a royal lineage of the dharma kings of Tibet, from a young age everyone called him Lhabu, the Divine Son.

When an elder guru of Khang Né Monastery conferred the empowerment of Vajrakīla, the guru encouraged those who knew the mantra to recite the approach mantra for Vajrakīla and for those who did not, to recite the approach mantra for Vajrapāṇi. The Lord Lhabu, also, made a mala of kyerpa wood (berberis aristate) and performed over ten million prostrations and recitations of the approach mantra. Since he meditated on a protection circle, he was free from obstacles.

From a young age, he had visions of Yeshé Gönpo, Padmasambhava, and Banak Genyen amongst others. Even while playing, he acted only in conformity with the doctrine. Frightened by the shortcomings of cyclic existence, he developed renunciation in his heart. In his dreams, he had many visions of Yeshé Chokyang, the Dharma Protector of Primordial Wisdom. From the fully ordained monk Ralo Tarlam of Kyodrak Monastery, he learned the way to posit the view and received experiential instructions on the way of meditating on Avalokiteśvara and Padmasambhava. Due to this, when he became slightly older, he already had a great propensity for the doctrine.

On a number of occasions, he had pure visions of such things as sights, sounds, and awareness appearing as deity, mantra, and dharmakaya. When Karma Döndam Jigdral Wangpo, the reincarnation of Nedo Karma Dechen, gave instructions on the Cutting Through (trekchö) and Leaping Over (tögal) meditational practices of the Peaceful and Wrathful Karling cycle to his father and some other people, [Lhabu] joined them. Consequently, his view was enhanced, and he realised the avenues through which the six lamps shine forth.

 

After that, due to an unfathomable amount of blame and loss, the relatives, servants, mother and son left home and wandered to many different places. When they arrived in Tsari, he said there were ḍākinīs enjoying a tantric feast and they instructed him: “Yogin, eat this human flesh!” Two ḍākinīs stuffed human flesh into his mouth immediately saturating his mind and body with bliss. These were only some of the marvellous things that occurred. [While there], he visited the majority of the sacred sites in Ü and Tsang in central Tibet and then once again returned home.

At the age of twenty-two in the Earth Bird Year, (1849), a strong attitude of renunciation enveloped his mind. He went to the Fifth Trülshik Mahāpaṇḍita, Palden Gyurmé Tsewang Trinlé, the victor of all the directions, and in the temple of Do Ngak Shedrub Ling he firstly took refuge and then the fundamental precepts. He changed his appearance and clothing and was given the name Ngawang Tsoknyi. A person of good faith offered him auspicious articles and yoghurt. He filled his bowl with the yoghurt and gave butter and cheese in return. With those actions, many auspicious doors were made.

In the sixth lunar month, when the newly founded tradition of the first great accomplishment ceremony of The Eight Pronouncements: The Assembly of the Sugata was established, he was appointed as the leader of the practice sessions. Knowing that his guru and Padmasambhava were inseparable, he developed overpowering devotion. After that, for about two years, he memorised [texts] and even performed such activities as assisting around the monks’ quarters and fetching water. All the lamas and monks treated him lovingly due to his kind nature. He received numerous instructions, oral transmissions, and empowerments of Mahāmudrā and Dzogchen from A Deu Rinpoche and Yongdzin Lama Tenwang and engaged in their accompanying preliminary practices and purifications. 

When Tsoknyi was twenty-four, the Refuge-protector A Deu Rinpoche peacefully passed away. In order to fulfil his guru’s aspirations, he [set] the ring finger of his right hand [on fire] as an offering lamp. He was fully ordained by Tenpé Nyima of Taglung Monastery and was bestowed the name Mipham Loden. He received a great number of oral transmissions and empowerments including The Hundred Transmissions of Mitra (Mitra Gyatsa). Since Tenpé Nyima introduced him to the main practice of Mahāmudrā, he developed the faith that perceives the guru as a real buddha, and blessings entered him.  

The moment he met Rigzin Chögyal Dorjé (1789–1865/59),[4] in particular, an unbearable and blazing devotion arose, and their minds mixed as one. At different times when it was suitable, he received many empowerments, oral transmissions, and instructions including the instructions of the preliminary and main practices of Mahāmudrā of the glorious Drukpa [Kagyü tradition], the profound instructions of the [Dzogchen] rüshen practice, or the preliminary practice of differentiation, of the Peaceful and Wrathful Karling cycle along with the introduction of the main practice, the empowerment and instructions of the co-emergent Cakrasaṃvara and the two-faced Vajravārāhī, the supportive teachings for the Six Yogas of Nāropa, various oral instructions, numerous cycles of the aural transmission, and the profound treasure of The Wrathful Sky-Blue Guru (Guru Drakting).

Furthermore, he relied upon many gurus including the incarnation of Vima, Karma Tengyé Chöpel, and the Seventh Chögön, Chökyi Nyinché as well as extensively receiving teachings of maturation and liberation. He reciprocally gave various suitable empowerments and oral transmissions to and from Trülshik Kyabné Trinlé Gyatso, Nagpo Togden, and Guru Pünchö, etc.

In the Iron Pig Year (1851) at the age of twenty-four, he entered into strict retreat. After nine months had passed, despite running out of provisions, he was able to remain for about four years through engaging in immeasurable austerities.

One time, when Rigzin Chögyal Dorjé had arrived at the meditation room of his retreat hut, the Lord Chögyal Dorjé bestowed upon him the profound treasure of The Wrathful Sky-Blue Guru, which he himself had extracted from Nyengyal Dorjé Khyung Citadel. He also conferred the empowerment, oral transmission, and instructions of The Guru White Jambhala: The Deity of Wealth (Lama Nor Lha Dzam Kar).

In the catalogue of vajra prophecies it says: “At that time in Tibet when a short period of happiness like the glimpsing of the sun, a custodian of the teachings, a hidden yogi who is the emanation of Muné Tsenpo (8th–9th century) named Gaṇa will invoke an emanation of mine from eastern Ü named Dharmasūrya Candrabhadra. This emanation is a custodian of the doctrine and special transmissions and possesses the wisdom eye.” 

 

According to that prophecy, he is indicated as being that very custodian of the doctrine.

The [guru] prophesied: “I offer this advice to you in place of retreat provisions. Put them into practice and you will not remain in your current state. You will have disciples, fame, students, and patrons in addition to power, wealth, and unrivalled authority.”

The Lord [Tsoknyi] replied: “I have renounced this life. From a primordial state that is able to be content and has little desires, I focus the depths of my mind on the dharma. The depth of the dharma is to live as a beggar, the depth of living as a beggar is to live that way until death, and the depth of living that way until death is to entrust myself to a mountainous hermitage. In doing so, like Milarepa, I wish for a life untainted by the stains of the eight worldly concerns. The ordinary accomplishments are of no need.”

The [guru] replied: “Even if you say you want it to be like that, you should wait and see how it turns out.” 

As such, Tsoknyi mixed excrement and urine together, smeared and spread it all over the meditation cave. This was greatly auspicious, and it increased his followers and enlightened activities as it was prophesied.

When he was practicing the approach and accomplishment phases of The Wrathful Sky-Blue Guru there were many great signs including the guardians of the teachings actually displaying their forms, the eight classes of gods and rākṣasas displaying magical machinations, tumultuous noise, and a cacophony of sounds. Rid of intimidation and fear, he overpowered these challenging signs through the sheer brilliance of his vajra-like concentration. As an indication of this, they offered their life and heart to him. All of those who beheld lineages of the dharma, accepted him as one who dispels all adverse conditions and accomplishes any and all favourable conditions.

From then onwards, his enlightened activities flourished even further: Humans congregated during the day and gods and demons assembled during the night. In the evenings and mornings, clothes and food were gathered. As all those were accumulated, the guru’s prophecy came to be true. 

When he performed the approach and accomplishment of the principal and retinue deities of Guru Orgyen: The Deity of Wealth: The White Jambhala, he had visions of the assembly of deities. One day, in particular, a stream of melted butter flowed down from the support beam of his meditation room and, in a single stroke, made his clothes and belongings very greasy. He himself even declared: “Due to engaging in severe austerities and the interdependency from accomplishing the White Jambhala, my successive students will not be impoverished as they will have food, clothing, and resources.” This can even be seen directly today.

Generally, without any effort, he would have pure visions of whichever deity he practiced, as well as having visions of various other deities. He even composed an instructional text for The Wrathful Sky-Blue Guru. He newly constructed a retreat centre called Khachö Chödzong Dechen Rabar. Since he practiced The Three Bodies of the Guru (Lama Kusum), for seven years, the remaining beneficial karma from his past lives of Langdo Lotsawa Könchok Jungné (8th century)[5] and Ratna Lingpa (1403–1479)[6] was activated.

All the physical yogas of the vajra body clearly arose in the mirror of his mind, which are contained in his mind-sadhana practice. In his pure vision, the wisdom body of Ratna Lingpa often took care of him, disclosing to him the secretly sealed [teachings] of the five kinds of secret instructions along with the physical yogas and giving him the secrets of the open and direct instructions. In this way, Ratna Lingpa was his companion on the path and his primordial wisdom flourished [due to this relationship]. There are numerous wondrous narratives such as those. [Through this] he received the name Pema Drimé Öser. 

In the Wood Monkey Year, (1884), Jamgön Kongtrül [Lodrö Tayé] (1813–1899)[7] bestowed upon him the cycles of the aural lineage concerning the path of skilful means, and he also received the complete instructions of the five stages of Ratna Lingpa’s The Exceptional Assembly of the Accomplishment of the Enlightened Mind (Tugdrub Yangdü). He was particularly praised as “Tsoknyi, the lord of the accomplished ones.” [Jamgön Kongtrül] also received many teachings from the Lord [Tsoknyi]. 

After that, he eventually came to Kyodrak by passing through Gadzo, Palshung, Tamkha, and Kyadzo. Since Lama Sal [Ga Rinpoche], Ten [Nying Rinpoche], Dung [Kar Rinpoche], and his father’s family had a profound patron-priest relationship, their good intentions integrated as one in both spiritual and temporal affairs.

In particular, the Lord accepted Dungkyé Rinpoche Rigzin Düdjom Dorjé, who was the supreme guru of the previous lifetimes, to be the emanation of Barom Darma Wangchuk (1127–1194?).[8] He recited the seven-syllable mantra of Cakrasaṃvara hundreds of millions of times. He received the six dharmas of Mahāmudrā and Dzogchen from Chögyal Dorjé. Through engaging in the practices, he actually discovered the signs of accomplishment.

From this unrivalled and excellent being [Chögyal Dorjé], who had visions of a multitude of deities and so forth, he received the Barom Mahāmudrā cycle of teachings concerning the six dharmas of The Lord of Bliss (Degon), Tulku Mingyur Dorjé’s (1645–1667)[9] pure vision teachings of The Sky Teachings (Namchö), and The Unified Oral and Treasure Teachings (Karter Sungjuk), written by the doctrine holder Chödak Chagmé Rinpoche (1613–1678),[10] which is an ancillary text to the mind treasures [of Mingyur Dorjé]. He received all of their empowerments and oral transmissions in their entirety. He also offered long-life prayers of the gurus as well as some of the empowerments and oral transmissions in return.

Upon the invitations of his paternal relative Sowang Pün, his former enemy Rakshu Tsewang Dargé, Surmang Ati, and others, he gave instructions and spiritual advice, establishing them in the doctrine. Then he went into a strict retreat in the cave of Khyungtra having taken upon himself a tantric commitment. Banak Genyen, the protector of that sacred site, offered its life and heart to him, and Tsoknyi accepted him at his word. Then Banak Genyen gave him a key for the enlightened activities of magnetisation, and Tsoknyi was able to compose a profound meditational practice of that treasure protector [Banak Genyen]. With a seal of secrecy, he offered it to the gurus, abbots, and masters of Kyodrak Monastery, where the text can still be found. 

His experience and realisation thrived. He went to U, Tsang, and other destinations where he combined his beneficial works for sentient beings and for the practice. Finally, at the age of sixty-one on the twenty-ninth day of the fourth month of the Earth Mouse Year, 1888, he peacefully passed away.

He had a great number of students including the Ninth Gyalwang Ngedön Tenpé Nyiché,  the Sixth Jé Khamtrül Tenpé Nyima, the Sixth Trülshik A Dé Gyalsé, Tari Ngawang Chöjor, Togden Ngawang Gelek, Gechak Togden Ngawang Tsangyang Gyatso, Jamé Chöpal Gyatso, Jamtrül Tenpé Gyaltsen, Dru Jamyang Drakpa,  Dompa Lama Püntsok Chögrub, Taru Togden Chöying Namdak, Lang Ngawang Lhündrup, Geshé Tenzin Sangpo, Künkhen Tsewang Namgyal, Ngor Khen Künga Tenzin, Nagpo Tertön Garwang Yeshé Rölpa, and Ngawang Namgyal Tenpa.

 

THE FOURTH INCARNATION

The fourth Tsoknyi, Lhagyal Dorjé, was born in the Chugru family of Kyodrak. He was recognised by the great treasure revealer Barwé Dorjé and gave him the name Tsoknyi Lhagyal Dorjé. Numerous historical accounts were lost during the Cultural Revolution (1966–1976) including his biography and the dates of birth and death. So, there is no clear account of him.

THE FIFTH INCARNATION

Foremost adept in the Land of Snows,

Heart son of the lineage of Marpa, Mila, and Dakpo,

Regarded as the reincarnation of Chöjé Lingpa,

Tsoknyi Öser, I revere you full-heartedly.

 

Although I do not possess the skills to write

The outer, inner, and secret biographies of this excellent being,

With the help of ancient records and oral narratives of the older generations

My fingers felt at ease in penning them into words.

The birthplace of the fifth incarnation, Tsoknyi Öser Karma Khyenrab Lodrö Chökyi Döndrub,[11] was in Kyodrak,[12] which is divided into two [areas called] Nang and Sog.[13] His birthplace was in the upper Sog district.

This virtuous and auspicious sacred place has adopted its name because it is “where the dharma robes of Guru Rinpoche once dried,” as well as a place where a statue of Dorjé Drolö miraculously appeared. This marvellous sacred place was also predicted in the religious song of the great treasure revealer, Barwa Dorjé,[14] which says, “In this auspicious and virtuous place of Tranang Tashi valley,[15] there will be congregations of young men and horses.” In this place, where greatly accomplished ones have visited, the son, Karma Khyenrab Lodrö Chökyi Döndrub, was born on the twenty-eighth day of the eleventh month the Earth Bird Year, 1969, to his father Sé Pema and his mother Yesa Geyang.[16]

During the turbulent times,[17] the retreat master Alho Nyingjé of Pedong[18] and other practitioners had no choice but to dig for caterpillar fungus to pay tax. When they arrived at the mountain, Alho Nyingjé continuously meditated. His student Sé Pema (Tsoknyi’s father) provided different kinds of service for him, including digging for fungus to cover both their taxes. At that time, Lama Anying stayed at Khong Yerpo,[19] where his mind dissolved into the sphere of reality (i.e. he passed away).

One day, Alho Nyingjé made plans to come to the place known as Gepa Yangshar Yechok Shingkyong Yabyum (Parents of the Local Protectors of the Steep Cliff Facing East).[20] When his student Sé Pema arrived, he was not there. But Alho Nyingjé arrived after a short wait. Sé Pema asked, “Where did you go? I have been waiting for you here.” Alho Nyingjé answered along with providing a prophecy, “I fell asleep for a short while. When I fell asleep, I dreamt that you would have a son who will be a great help for the Barom teachings, but I am not sure that others will believe this.” Similarly, many noble beings prophesied in the same way.

Furthermore, in the past, when Dungtrül Rinpoche came to Khatsa Traba,[21] Sé Pema helped him to set up his residence. When Dungtrül Rinpoche arrived at the monastery, he said to Sé Pema: “Your eldest son is the heart of your family. He is a superior being, but do not tell others.” Thus, he recognised him as Tsoknyi Rinpoche, but no one was informed for five years.

When Situ Pema Wangchok Gyalpo[22] visited Kyodrak before 1958, he was strongly requested to recognise the reincarnation of Tsoknyi Öser, but he said, “There is no need to hurry now because in the future there will be someone who will certainly benefit the Dharma and sentient beings. As the saying goes, ‘although the gold is under the earth, its light shines in the sky.’ We can recognise him at a later time.” As such, based on the prophecies made by the Karmapa Düdül Dorjé now the karma and aspirations had ripened in time.

When Saljé Rinpoche was on a strict retreat at Samten Chöling, Tsoknyi had an audience with him and received advice. Many natural, auspicious interdependent connections occurred during this audience, such as when Tsoknyi reached the top of the ladder, Saljé Rinpoche was carrying a full bowl of white yoghurt. Saljé Rinpoche said, “Tashi delek, come inside.” When Tsoknyi was prostrating three times, Rinpoche hurriedly said, “Please sit down.” Tsoknyi sat on the cushion, and the student and master had a long conversation beginning with inquiring about each other’s well-being. During lunchtime, some Taiwanese and Hong Kong students of Saljé Rinpoche were also present. When Saljé Rinpoche said, “Tsoknyi Rinpoche,” Tsoknyi said, “I have not used that name, and I am not willing to use it! There is a danger that it will produce pride in me.” Saljé Rinpoche said, “It was a slip of the tongue, but it has created good interdependent connections.” After that, Saljé Rinpoche offered another bowl of white yoghurt to him and said, “I am offering this to Tsoknyi with the aspiration that he receives complete instruction and benefits all sentient beings.” Tsoknyi remarked, “This is like the old story of the village girl Lekyima offering yoghurt to the Buddha, the Bhagavān. Because she offered yoghurt, she was blessed with peace throughout the three times and the realisation of the pure essence of the supreme wisdom. Hence with this aspiration, I’ll drink it all without leaving any behind.”

From a young age, he possessed many excellent signs. For example, when the monastery was first granted approval,[23] many people used to gather in the dance hall, and the numbers were immense. Due to the small size of the hall, queues formed outside. Having moved through in file, he made it inside without any difficulties. This was the first time he heard the sounds of Dharma, and his mind was filled with joy due to his previous karma. After a brief moment, he and his father reluctantly had to leave due to overcrowding. However, in his heart, his desire to join prayer gatherings became like that of a thirsty person discovering water; yet since it was impossible, he could do nothing but cry. His mother said, “Don’t do that. Those people also need to join [the prayer gathering]. If you learn how to read, you will be able to become a monk.” Upon hearing these comforting words and from the incredible joy he felt, it seems that his karmic propensities awoke. Thus, he went to learn to read and write. [In relation to this] his father let the young boy sleep with him in his bed. Every morning his kind-hearted father chanted Shaking Samsara from the Depths[24] prayer and every evening The Kīla Prayer. As a result, the young boy learnt The Kïla Prayer easily even before learning to read. Moreover, he had delightful experiences and dreams. However, I fear there would be too many words, so I shall not write them here.

While he was offering his hair[25] to Saljé Rinpoche of Kyodrak in 1982, Rinpoche asked, “What is your name?” He replied, “My name is Tsültrim Nyima.” Rinpoche replied, “Usually, we change the name when we perform the hair-cutting ceremony, but your name is good, so let us leave it as it is.” This was the moment he entered the Buddhist tradition. On that spring day, there was a bit of drizzle and fog had gathered on top of the sacred mountain of Gardzé.[26] On that distant mountain, he saw the Dzachu river, resembling a turquoise dragon ascending into the sky, and grass sprouting on the grounds of Kyodrak Monastery. Consequently, he stated that it was a difficult place to forget since he was very fortunate to have had that opportunity.

Then, having enrolled in the monastery, he studied the monastic education programme in its entirety—learning ritual dances, musical instruments, and other disciplines. He also received a lot of exceptional instructions on [the paths of] means and liberation. From Jamyang Lodrö Rinpoche,[27] he received the cycles of teachings of the Barom tradition and empowerments and pith instructions. He received many empowerments and pith instructions from Saljé Rinpoche, who is endowed with the three types of kindness, and Dungtrül Rinpoche.[28] He received precepts of renunciation and the name Tsültrim Sangpo and also received the empowerment of The Kīla of the Secret Essence[29] from the Abbot Karma Jampa Yönten or Do Dé Rinpoche.[30] Moreover, he received various empowerments and transmissions from Sanggyé Tenzin,[31] over the course of a month. In particular, Rabjor Rinpoche[32] and Tsoknyi received the empowerment and instructions of the single lineage. On top of that, he received teachings on the medical sciences and The Four Tantras with its empowerment from Wön Gelek and Rabpel.[33] He received the details of the [medical] practices for those tantras from Wön Gelek. He also received teachings on astrology and other instructions from the chant master and vajra master of the monastery, Abbot Karma Orgyen, and education on Tibetan grammar, A Guide of the Bodhisattva’s Way of Life (Bodhicaryāvatāra), and other teachings from abbots and masters. From the yogi Yeshé Rabgyé,[34] he began to learn Nāropa’s Six Yogas of the path of skilful means and the Barom tradition’s practice of Mahāmudrā of the path of liberation. Having combined the methods of the profound instructions of the paths of skilful means and liberation with study, contemplation, and meditation, he engaged in a strict, solitary retreat of three years, three months, and three days at the Barom Meditation Centre. After his retreat came to an end, he stayed at the meditation cave of Tseril[35] for several years and received empowerments of Cakrasaṃvara and Mahākāla from Sanggyé Drakpa.[36] He became a fully accomplished excellent scholar having relied upon various non-sectarian great beings and having integrated study, contemplation, and meditation.

As the Refuge-lord Saljé Rinpoche often had many excellent and wondrous dreams and signs, he recognised the Fifth Tsoknyi Rinpoche and named him Karma Khyenrab Lodrö Chökyi Döndrup.[37] Later, Tsoknyi visited the sacred sites of India and Nepal. He has come back to his fatherland three times since 2001. Keeping the monastery and its people in mind and with a pure intention, he constructed a five-story temple at Kyodrak Monastery that is comparable in size to a seven-story building. It has a gilded roof complete with a gold ornament and victory banner and seventy-eight rooms to accommodate about five thousand monks. Moreover, he built a three-story meditation hall called Chabti Serpuk[38] with a gold ornament above its assembly hall. Along with this hall, he also built seventeen monk’s quarters called Yabeb Khang[39] and a monastic college containing an assembly hall and eighty monk’s quarters.

He made donations towards the construction of Serphug Namtsang assembly hall,[40] which is the abode of the renunciate Tsültrim Tarchin. He donated 300,000 Yuan towards [recovery projects after] the Yushul earthquake. He gave donations to the Serta monks and nuns for their prayers. He also donated clothes to the region of Yushul and offered 500 Samten Bülchung[41] to the meditators. He sponsors the twenty-ninth pūjā every year and donates money to the monks. With Khen Jiga[42] he sponsors the food and other facilities for the monks at the monastic college. He also diligently accumulates funds for Barom’s Prayer Festival. Other than that, he donates thermoses and quality incense to the abbots, retreat masters, and great meditators and clothes to the needy. Each and every year he strives in gathering the accumulations. 

The religious centres he has built with great effort for the benefit of others are Taiwan Dharma Centre, Barom Tegsum Chökhor Ling, Macao Dharma Centre, Ngedön Tegchen Ling, and the England Dharma Centre, Künpan Jampa Ling. Furthermore, he is currently visiting many countries, including Singapore, Macao, Honkong, Guato, and Mauritius to give teachings, rescue animals, and advise people in need.

May all be virtuous!

[1] karma pa 10 bdud 'dul rdo rje, BDRC P828

[2] chos rje gling pa, BDRC P671

[3] This is a scribble error as the dates between the First Tsoknyi and the Third Tsoknyi does not make this possible.

[4] chos rgyal rdo rje, BDRC P1711

[5] lang gro dkon mchog 'byung gnas,

[6] rat+na gling pa, BDRC P470

[7] 'jam mgon kong sprul blo gros mtha' yas, BDRC P264

[8] 'ba' rom pa dar ma dbang phyug, BDRC P1856

[9] gman chos mi 'gyur rdo rje, BDRC P659

[10] karma chags med, BDRC P649

[11] tshogs gnyis 'od zer karma mkhyen rab blo gros chos kyi don 'grub

[12] skyo brag

[13] nang sog

[14] 'bar ba' rdo rje

[15] bkra nang bkra shis lung pa

[16] se pad+ma; g.yes bza' dge g.yang

[17] Cultural Revolution

[18] pad sdong a lho snying rje

[19] a snying bla ma; khong g.yer po

[20] gas pa g.yang shar g.yas phyogs zhing skyong yab yum

[21] dung sprul rin po che; kha tsha pra ba

[22] ta' sit u 11 pad+ma dbang mchog rgyal po, 1886–1952, BDRC P925

[23] This is approval is from CCP after the cultural revolution.

[24] 'khor ba dong sprug

[25] This is when the lama cuts the first tip of the hair before the individual becomes ordained.

[26] gar mdzad ri

[27] 'jam dbyangs blo gros

[28] dung sprul

[29] gsang thig phur pa

[30] byams pa yon tan / mdo sde rin po che

[31] sangs rgyas bstan 'dzin

[32] rab 'byor rin po che

[33] dbon dge legs; rab 'phel

[34] ye shes rab rgyas

[35] tshe ril

[36] sangs rgyas grag pa

[37] karma mkhyen rab blo gros chos kyi don grub

[38] chab bsti gser phug 

[39] ya 'bebs khang

[40] gser pug rnam tshang 'du khang

[41] bsam rten 'bul chung

[42] mkhan 'jig dga'

Published November 2020

Edited September 2021

NOTES

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Dbon dge legs. 2020. Grub pa'i sa mthor gshegs pa'i skyo brag tshogs gnyis 'od zer sku phreng rim byon gyi rnam thar mdor bsdus bzhugs so. London: Tib Shelf P005

COLOPHON

None

A Brief Biography:

The Successive Incarnations of Tsoknyi Öser

Abstract

These introductory biographies of the successive reincarnations of Tsoknyi Öser invite us to the land of liberation by establishing their enlightened lifestyles as examples. The text highlights the significance of devotion towards a spiritual master as, for example, the Third Tsokyni lighting his ring finger on fire, offering it as a lamp to fulfil his guru's aspirations. 

English | བོད་ཡིག

AUTHOR

Wönpo Gelek

TRADITION

Barom Kagyü

INCARNATION LINE

Chöjé Lingpa

Tsoknyi Öser

HISTORICAL PERIOD

18th Century

19th Century

20th Century

21st Century 

TEACHERS

The First Incarnation:

The Thirteenth Karmapa Düdül Dorjé

Saljé Chödrub

The Second Incarnation:

n/a

The Third Incarnation:

Ralo Tarlam

Karma Döndam Jigdral Wangpo

The Fifth Trülshik Mahāpaṇḍita, Gyurmé Tsewang Trinlé

A Deu Rinpoche

Yongdzin Lama Tenwang

Taglung Tenpé Nyima

Rigzin Chögyal Dorjé

Karma Tengyé Chöpel

The Seventh Chögön Chökyi Nyinché

Trülshik Kyabné Trinlé Gyatso

Nagpo Togden

Guru Pünchö

Jamgön Kongtrül Lodrö Tayé

Lama Salga Rinpoche

Ten Nying Rinpoche

Dungkar Rinpoche

INSTITUTIONS

STUDENTS

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A Brief Biography: The Successive Incarnations of Tsoknyi Öser