H. E. Kyabje Khochhen Rinpoche
His Eminence Kyabje Khochhen Rinpoche
The Master who presided the Empowerment of the Dojo Bumzang in the inauguration of Gephel Ling Retreat Centre
His Eminence Khotrul Jurme Dogyud Gyatso Rinpoche, renowned as His Eminence Khochhen Rinpoche, was born in 1937 in Gonjo Dodrup in Eastern Tibet. He was recognized as the reincarnation of Namdröl Sangpo Rinpoche of the Khochhen Monastery at an early age by His Eminence the 8th Mindrolling Khenchen. Tersay Chime Rinpoche, who was the elder brother of Dzongsar Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö, formally enthroned Rinpoche at the Khochhen Monastery.
Rinpoche undertook his studies at Mindrolling in Tibet, where he studied and mastered the Buddhist philosophy, psychology, tantras, astrology, poetry, literature, calligraphy and rituals. He received the profound Teachings and the instructions of eminent masters such as Dzongsar Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö, Minling Chung Rinpoche and Minling Khen Rinpoche. Rinpoche had been in Mindrolling in Tibet for over ten years when the communist invasion took place in 1959.
Following the invasion, Rinpoche, who was only 22 years old, went into exile in India as part of the entourage of His Holiness Mindrolling Trichen, comprised of only seven members. In 1965, with a small group of monks, he selected a piece of wild land near Dehra Dun thinking it to be an auspicious location for the monastic seat of Mindrolling in exile. This small group of monks began to transform this arid land through the construction of monk’s quarters and of a main shrine room. Finally, in 1976, he invited His Holiness to assume the leadership of the Monastery.
Since the establishment of Mindrolling in India, His Eminence Khochhen Rinpoche has been working tirelessly for the construction and maintenance of the monastery. His efforts and perseverance have played a major role in every phase of its development over the years.
Rinpoche also established the Ngagyur Nyingma College, or Institute of Advanced Buddhist Studies, in 1991, whose program teaches a nine year course of study, which includes a curriculum of Sutra and Tantra for approximately one hundred monks. With the intent of spreading the Buddhadharma and to the benefit of all sentient beings, many were the Tulkus and monks who over the years were trained and received the title of Khenpo at Ngagyur Nyingma College.
Near the Mindrolling Monastery, Rinpoche commissioned the construction of a 190 meter tall Stupa, the Stupa of Descent of the Buddha from the Kingdom of the Gods, inaugurated in 2002 and dedicated to world peace. This Stupa is excellent in all aspects, being excellent in the inside, on the outside and in the environmental surroundings.
In Eastern India, in Kalimpong, Rinpoche built a new monastery of the Mindrolling Lineage, and a school for over one hundred children was established to benefit the poor of the region, which was inaugurated on the 1st of March 2007, as well as a clinic and many other beneficent works.
Khochhen Rinpoche is continuously committed to similar activities for the benefit of others and especially for the benefit of the poor and the helpless. Rinpoche also helps with money donations for school fees, so that parents with scarce means are able to send their children to school. In the same manner that a mother cares for her only child, Rinpoche cares for all sentient beings.
In the capital of India, New Deli, Rinpoche built a new Mindrolling monastery, inaugurated in 2005, in which twenty monks perform pujas for the benefit of all sentient beings, every morning and evening.
Besides being the Director of the Mindrolling Monastery, Rinpoche has served as president of the Tibetan community in Clemente Town since the year of 1987.