The Treasury of Lives

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

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Sanggye Nyenpa was a student of the Seventh Karmapa and one of the four main teachers of the Eighth Karmapa, who composed several biographies about him.

Tsering Chodron

b.1929 - d.2011

Khandro Tsering Chodron, known to many simply as Khandro-la, was the wife of Jamyang Khyentse Chokyi Lodro. Following their marriage in 1948 she lived at Dzongsar and received instruction from tutors and lamas including Khyentse Chokyi Lodro himself. She accompanied Chokyi Lodro when he left Dzongsar in 1955 and travelled to Lhasa and then into Sikkim and India. After Khyentse Chokyi Lodro's death in 1959, she lived for more than four decades in the presence of his reliquary stūpa, at the Royal Chapel in Gangtok, Sikkim, in simple conditions. She moved to France in 2006 and remained there until her death in 2011, after which a golden-domed memorial stupa was constructed to house her relics. Even though she never formally taught or gave empowerments, she was widely revered, even among senior Tibetan Buddhist teachers, for the sanctity of her presence, and for her humility, devotion, and playful humour.

Machik Rema, whose name is also written in sources as Rima and Rebma, was a twelfth-century female saint of the Tropu Kagyu and Chod traditions. She studied with Kunden Repa and his brother Gyeltsa Rinchen Gon, the founder of Tropu Monastery. She raised Chegom Sherab Dorje, whom she identified as the reincarnation of Padampa Sanggye.

Konchok Gyeltsen

b.1601 - d.1687
BDRC P7118

Konchok Gyeltsen was a Barawa lama active in Tibet, Bhutan, and Sikkim during the seventeenth century. He is counted among the "five lama factions" in Bhutan that did not support Zhabdrung Rinpoche's unification of the country and, as a result, he was forced to leave Bhutan, after which the Barawa monasteries were taken over by the Drukpa Kagyu. Relocating to Sikkim, he established the Barawa tradition there with the sponsorship of the first Buddhist ruler. His incarnation line is known as the Kagyu Tulkus and also the Drubtob Tulkus.

Lobzang Wanggyel was a Tibetan medical doctor who trained in Lhasa under Khyenrab Norbu in the mid twentieth century. He married into the Kundeling family, joining the Lhasa aristocracy, and, partly as a result, spent ten years in a Communist prison. He practiced medicine during his incarceration and in Lhasa on his release until leaving Tibet in 1983. In India he served in the administration of the Dharamsala Mentseekhang and as a senior personal physician to the Dalai Lama.