Kyabje Taklung Tsetrul Rinpoche was born in central Tibet in 1926. Recognized as an incarnation of the great master Ngok Chöku Dorje, he began his studies at the age of five in the monastery of Taklung Tse. At the age of eight he went to the famed Dorje Drak Monastery to continue his studies and underwent rigorous training, becoming proficient in all rituals and arts. He received the complete teachings and empowerments of the Northern Treasures, and was appointed main Khenchen of Dorje Drak Monastery. He also received Dzogchen teachings from Polu Khenpo Dorje, a direct disciple of Khenpo Ngakchung.
After the Chinese Cultural Revolution in 1959, Rinpoche fled Tibet for India. In exile, he continued to seek out and receive teachings and transmissions from numerous masters of the Kagyu and Nyingma lineages. He established a new Dorje Drak Monastery in exile in Shimla, India, and advised and led the local community. He accepted the request to become the Sixth Head of the Nyingma Lineage in 2012.
Kyabje Taklung Tsetrul Rinpoche kindly bestowed the Northern Treasures and other empowerments on many teachers, including Dilgo Khyentse Yangsi Rinpoche. The previous Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche and Shechen Rabjam Rinpoche also received the Changter and other empowerments from Taklung Tsetrul Rinpoche in Nepal.
He traveled extensively throughout the West and Asia, especially during the last three years, bestowing numerous empowerments and teachings to thousands of students. In 2015 he kindly visited Shechen Monastery in India and Shechen Orgyen Chodzong Nunnery in Bhutan. His passing is a great loss to all of us. Prayers for his swift rebirth and for the fulfillment of his activities are being done in Shechen Monasteries and Nunnery.
We pray that Kyabje Taklung Tsetrul Rinpoche’s emanations will swiftly reappear to continue benefiting the Dharma and beings.
(Story adapted from Shechen Monastery newsletter of February 2016.)