Kalkha Jetsun Dampa Passes

Kalkha Rinpoche Passes in Mongolia

With profound sadness, we at Jonang Foundation report the loss of His Eminence the 9th Kalkha Jetsun Dhampa Rinpoche, Dorjee Chang Jampel Namdrol Choekyi Gyaltsen. Jetsun Dampa Rinpoche was 80 years old. He passed away earlier today in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia.

Kalkha Rinpoche was born in Lhasa in 1932 and conducted much of his studies at Gomang College of Drepung Monastery before departing Tibet for India after 1959. He spent several years working at the radio station in Darjeeling and then eventually settled in Madhya Pradesh with his family. In 1991, after the collapse of the Soviet Union, the Dalai Lama appointed him the spiritual head of Buddhism in Mongolia. Though he was unable to live in Mongolia until recently, he expressed his wish publicly to spend his final days there.

The title of "Kalkha" was first bestowed by the Fifth Dalai Lama on the Mongolian-born Lozang Tenpai Gyaltsen (1635-1723) in the year 1642. He was declared as a tulku or reincarnation of the Jonangpa master Taranatha. This line of incarnations continued up until the late 9th Kalkha Rinpoche. In 1997, the Dalai Lama appointed Kalkha Jetsun Dampa as the head of the Jonang tradition in exile, based at Takten Phuntsok Ling Monastery in Shimla.

 

See the related article on Phayul.com

 

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