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Khenchen Palden Sherab Rinpoche

Khenchen Palden Sherab Rinpoche

Khenchen Palden Sherab Rinpoche, along with Khenpo Tsewang Dongyal Rinpoche, is a founder and director of Padmasambhava Buddhist Center based at Padma Samye Ling in upstate New York. PBC is a worldwide Buddhist meditation and study network that includes local centers as well as retreat centers and monastic institutions.

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Venerable Khenchen Palden Sherab Rinpoche was a renowned scholar and meditation master of the Nyingma school of Tibetan Buddhism. He was born on May 10, 1938 in the Doshul region of Kham in eastern Tibet, near the sacred mountain Jowo Zegyal. On the morning of his birth, a small snow fell with flakes in the shape of lotus petals. Among his ancestors were many great scholars, practitioners, and tertons.

 

His family was semi-nomadic, living in the village during the winter and moving with the herds to high mountain pastures in the summer, where they lived in yak hair tents. The monastery for the Doshul region is known as Gochen Monastery, founded by the great terton Tsasum Lingpa, and his father’s family had the hereditary responsibility for administration of the business affairs of the monastery. His grandfather had been both administrator and chantmaster in charge of the ritual ceremonies.

 

Khenchen Rinpoche began his education at Gochen Monastery at age four. He entered Riwoche Monastery at age fourteen, completing his studies there just before the Chinese invasion of Tibet reached the area. Among his root teachers was the illustrious Khenchen Tenzin Dragpa (Katok Khenpo Ashe).

 

In 1959, Khenchen Rinpoche and his family were forced into exile, escaping to India. After the tumultuous period following their escape, in 1967 he was appointed head of the Nyingma department of the Central Institute of Higher Tibetan Studies in Sarnath by His Holiness Dudjom Rinpoche, the Supreme Head of the Nyingma school of Tibetan Buddhism. He held this position of abbot for seventeen years, dedicating all his time and energy to ensure the survival and spread of the Buddha’s teachings.

 

Venerable Khenchen Palden Sherab Rinpoche moved to the United States in 1984 to work closely with His Holiness Dudjom Rinpoche. In 1985, he and his brother, Venerable Khenpo Tsewang Dongyal Rinpoche, founded the Dharma Samudra Publishing Company. In 1988, they founded the Padmasambhava Buddhist Center (PBC), which has centers throughout the United States, as well as Puerto Rico, Russia, and India, among others. The principal center is Palden Padma Samye Ling, located in Delaware County, upstate New York. PBC also includes a traditional Tibetan Buddhist monastery and nunnery at the holy site of Deer Park in Sarnath, and the Miracle Stupa for World Peace at Padma Samye Jetavan, which is in Jetavan Grove in Shravasti, India.

 

Khenchen Palden Sherab Rinpoche traveled extensively within the United States and throughout the world, giving teachings and empowerments, conducting retreats and seminars, and establishing meditation centers. He authored three volumes of Tibetan works, and co-authored about twenty books in English with Venerable Khenpo Tsewang Dongyal Rinpoche.

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