Statement From His Holiness the Dalai Lama On the Reincarnation of the Panchen Lama

The following article is from the Summer, 1995 issue of the Snow Lion Newsletter and is for historical reference only. You can see this in context of the original newsletter here.


Today is the auspicious day when the Buddha first gave the Kalachakra teaching. The Kalachakra teachings have special connection with the Panchen Lamas. On this occasion, which also happens to be the Vaisaki, it is with great joy that I am able to proclaim the reincarnation of Panchen Rinpoche. I have recognized Gedhun Choekyi Nyima, born on April 25, 1989, whose father is Konchok Phuntsog, and mother Dechen Chodon, of Lhari district in Nagchu, Tibet, as the true reincarnation of Panchen Rinpoche.

In accordance with the historical and spiritual relationship between the Dalai Lamas and the Panchen Lamas the Search Committee for the Reincarnation, primarily represented by the Tashi Lhunpo Monastery in exile in India and various groups and individuals from all the regions of Tibet as well as from outside, have approached me to perform the examination and divination to determine the reincarnation.

I have taken upon myself this historical and spiritual task with a strong sense of responsibility. Over the recent years, I have with great care performed all necessary religious procedures for this purpose and have made supplications to the infallible Three Jewels.

I am fully convinced of the unanimous outcome of all these recognition procedures performed strictly in accordance with our religious tradition.

I have given Rinpoche the name of Tenzin Gedhun Yeshe Thrinley Phuntsog Pal Sangpo and have composed a long-life prayer titled Spontaneous Fulfillment of Wishes.

The search and recognition of Panchen Rinpoche's reincarnation is a religious matter and not political. It is my hope that the Chinese Government with whom I have kept contact regarding this matter through various channels over the recent years, will extend its understanding, cooperation and assistance to the Tashi Lhunpo Monastery in enabling Rinpoche to receive proper religious training and to assume his spiritual responsibilities.

Dharamsala, May H, 1995

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