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Ponlop Tsangpa Tenzin Rinpoché

Ponlop Tsangpa Tenzin Rinpoche is the head teacher (Ponlop) of the Triten Norbutse Monastery in Kathmandu, Nepal, founded by his master, Yongdzin Rinpoche. There, day by day, Ponlop Rinpoche truly embodies Yongdzin Rinpoche’s spirit and values, dedicating himself fully to the education of “his monks,” as he calls the students of the Yungdrung Bon Academy at the monastery. His first visit to Shenten Dargye Ling (and the West) took place in 2014. Since then, he has returned every year. Almost immediately, Ponlop Rinpoche earned the deep affection and respect of the western Bon students, who praise him for his pure, humble conduct and his extraordinary teaching skills.

Ponlob Tsangpa Tenzin Rinpoche (born 1970) is the Head Teacher of Triten Norbutse monastery.

Ponlob Rinpoche started his studies under the guidance of Lama Sherab Gelek and Khenpo Öser Jinpa. From the first he learned ritual skills, liturgical chants and the use of sacred instruments. From the latter he received teaching, transmissions and initiations. For a period of three years his main focus was to purify his mind-stream and to accumulate merit through the practice of the preliminaries, and once he had completed these to focus on the main practice of dzogchen. Thereafter he studied sutra, tantra and dzogchen with Lungkar Ponlob Drangsong Tsultrim Namdak.

A pivotal moment in Ponlob Rinpoche’s spiritual life occurred in 1986 when he met Yongdzin Lopon Tenzin Namdak Rinpoche, the foremost teacher in the Bon tradition, and an accomplished master of dzogchen. Ponlob Rinpoche had the great opportunity to receive ordination from Yongdzin Rinpoche who holds the unbroken lineage of monastic discipline. Since that time Ponlob Rinpoche has been unremitting in his quest to master the knowledge and practice of Yungdrung Bon.

In 1992 Ponlob Rinpoche came to India and Nepal. He entered Menri monastery and for nine years he continued to study sutra, tantra, dzogchen, and general Tibetan sciences, under the great blessings and guidance of H.H. Menri Tridzin Rinpoche, and H.E. Yongdzin Rinpoche, first in the Bon Dialectic School at Menri monastery and later at the Yungdrung Bon Academy of Higher Studies at Triten Norbutse monastery. Throughout these years of intensive study, Ponlob Rinpoche received the initiations, transmissions and instructions that are traditionally bestowed by the teacher to students with the aim of enhancing their understanding and experience of the teachings.

In 2001, upon successful completion of his studies, Ponlob Rinpoche was one of the first six geshes to graduate from Triten Norbutse monastery. Following his graduation, he continued to study, practice and teach at Triten Norbutse. In 2004, he was appointed and enthroned as the Head Teacher or Ponlob of Triten Norbutse monastery by and with the blessings of H.H. Menri Tridzin Rinpoche, H.E. Yongdzin Rinpoche, and Khenpo Tenpa Yungdrung Rinpoche. As the Head Teacher Ponlob Rinpoche has the responsibility to maintain the highest standards of monastic education and discipline which he does through his exemplary teaching, knowledge and inspiration. Since his assuming responsibility many geshes have studied and graduated under his guidance.

Since 2014 Ponlob Rinpoche is teachings in Europe. He is widely appreciated for his intelligence, dedication to meditation practice, and his ability to present any topic in a highly accessible way while relating it directly to our meditation practice.

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