The Treasury of Lives

A Biographical Encyclopedia of Tibet, Inner Asia, and the Himalaya

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Gonbujab was an eighteenth-century Mongolian aristocrat who mastered all four major languages of the Qing Empire, namely Manchu, Mongolian, Tibetan, and Chinese. As the director of the Tibetan Language School in Beijing, Gonbujab directed the translation of the Tibetan Buddhist Canon into Chinese and Mongolian. He composed a major history of China, written in Tibetan, and of Mongolia, written in Mongolian. He is also a translator of, among other works, Xuanzang's Journey to the West into Tibetan.

Lodro Gyeltsen

b.1402 - d.1472

Chennga Lodro Gyeltsen, one of the principal students of Khedrubje, was an early Geluk scholar-adept. He was educated in the classical scholastic curriculum and gained a reputation as a learned scholar at an early age. After his ordination, he received special instructions from Tsongkhapa's close disciple Tokden Jampel Gyatso. He served as abbot of two monasteries for a few years, but spent most of his adult life as a hermit. Although he wrote on a variety of topics, Lodro Gyeltsen is renowned for his extensive writings on Lojong, or Mind-Training, and Lamrim, or the Stages of the Path.

Yutok Yonten Gonpo the Younger is arguably the most prominent figure in Tibetan medical history. He is said to have authored or compiled the seminal text of Tibetan medicine, the Fourfold Treatise, often referred to as the Four Tantras. A host of other medical texts are also attributed to him. Yutok also left behind a significant religious legacy in the form of the teachings that his disciples, such as Sumton Yeshe Zung, codified into the Yutok Heart Essence tradition.

Sindrang Yab Gomchen Chewang Rinzin Tagchungdarpa was a twentieth-century Sikkimese tantric practitioner and master of Dzogchen and Mahāmudrā. A disciple of Risung Rinpoche, he was a member of Pemayangtse Monastery, which he led as Dorje Lopen for many years. As a prominent Buddhist teacher, he was tasked with representing Sikkim at statewide and regional events, and invited many of the great Tibetan lamas of the era to teach in Sikkim. He and his wife Sonam Ongmu had eight children, and spent their later years in pilgrimage.

Khon Lui Wangpo

early 8th cent.

Khon Lui Wangpo was a minister to king Tri Songdetsen during the importation of Buddhism to Tibet. He served as a patron to the building of Samye Monastery, and was one of the first men to be ordained there, by the Indian abbot Śāntarakṣita, an event that is said to have occurred in 775. Later tradition holds him to have been a disciple of Padmasambhava, and to have received from him the Vajrakīla transmission. The Khon family at the center of the Sakya tradition considers him their ancestor. Tibetan historiography names him a translator, but no texts preserved in the canon are ascribed to him.