The buddhist teachings and methods are traditionally passed on orally from teacher to student. Thanks to this tradition it is possible to trace the transmission lineage all the way back to the Buddha Sakyamuni himself. Through this means, the tradition also gives certainty about the quality and authenticity of the teachings and methods. With an eye on the importance of the transmission lineage it is a custom to introduce a teacher by first introducing his teachers.
Khenpo Jigmé Phuntsok
Lama Jigmé has had many buddhist teachers since his childhood. Khenpo Jigmé Phuntsok Rinpoche was, of all his teachers, the most important one. He was born in 1933. Already since the first moment after his birth he was endowed with special gifts. At the age of 14 he left his elderly home to study the buddhist scriptures. Khenpo Jigmé Phuntsok Rinpoche was called Dharma king during his life, which means that he mastered all Sutra’s and Tantra’s of buddhism and he was qualified to teach these.
Serthar Larung Gar
Khenpo Jigmé Phuntsok Rinpoche began in the 80s to teach in a valley in East-Tibet. Many Tibetans, Chinese and Westerners travelled to this valley to have lessons from him. This led to founding the buddhist institute Serthar Larung Gar. In 2001 more than 8,000 monks and nuns lived here. Under the leadership of Khenpo Jigmé Phuntsok Rinpoche’ thousands of students grew into competent teachers. Serthar Larung Gar is an ecumenical institute where the various Tibetan buddhist schools were taught in a spirit of harmony and mutual understanding.
In 1990 Khenpo Jigme Phuntsok Rinpoche travelled to India and Nepal. During his travel he met H.H. the Dalai Lama to whom he has also given teachings.
On January 7th 2004, Khenpo Jigme Phuntsok Rinpoche passed away at the age of 70. We wish and hope that Phuntsok Chö Ling will flourish in mind of the memory to Khenpo Jigmé Phuntsok Rinpoche. All our activities and merits are dedicated to H.H. Khenpo Jigmé Phuntsok Rinpoche.
When Lama Jigmé was at the age of 9 he met in the Tratsok monastery his first teacher: the great Yogi Siddhi Lama Shenphen Dewe Nyima. Lama Jigmé received from him the Dudjom Tersar of Dudjom Lingpa and completed the preliminary practices. In the Tratsok klooster he received from Lama Tokden Rinpoche the Dzogchen transmission.
From Lama Pema Santen Lama Jigmé had lessons in giving education on the buddhist doctrine. In the presence of a large group of laypeople and practitioners he bestowed upon him the title of teacher with a ceremonial khata. Lama Jigmé was actually not so joyous with this title because by his nature he would rather retreat in order to practice intensively in the mountains. Lama Pema Santen told him that it was his destination to teach others. During their last meeting he said that it was not certain whether they would see each other again. Lama Pema Santen advised Lama Jigmé to not forget his homeland. Besides he asked Lama Jigmé to become head of the Tratsok Klooster. In reply Lama Jigmé then said that at that moment he was not able to act upon this, but that he would try to support the monastery in the future.
Lama Jigmé orally received the transmission of Dzogchen from Khenpo Munsel (1916-1993). This was a prominent student of Khenpo Ngakchun (1879-1941), whom is also called Khenpo Ngawang Pal Zangpo. Lama Jigmé continued his studies for 9 years at the university Sertar Lharung Gar under the leadership of his most important teacher Khenpo Jigmé Phuntsok.
After his arrival in Nepal and India Lama Jigmé received education of H.H. the Dalai Lama, Penor Rinpoche, Dodrupchen Rinpoche, Chatral Rinpoche and Taklung Tsetrul Rinpoche, and also from Minling Trich, Sakya Trizin and the 17th Karmapa. These are a number of the great teachers under whom Lama Jigmé has studied.