The Nyingma Head, Kathok Getse Rinpoche
Gyurme Tenpa Gyaltsen aka the Fourth Katok Getse Rinpoche was one of the five ‘’Golden Throne’’ holders of the Katok Monastery lineage, a branch of the Nyingma tradition. At the Nyingma Monlam in Bodhgaya, January 2018, Rinpoche was appointed to be the supreme head of the Nyingma Tradition for three years.
At the same meeting of the representatives of the Nyingma schools, it was decided to appoint Kathok Getse Rinpoche and five other Nyingma lamas as the supreme head of Nyingma tradition in a three-year tenure basis.
Kham Kathok Satuan Tibetan settlement in Dehradun was expecting Rinpoche’s presence at the settlement’s 50th founding anniversary next February.
Table of Contents
Origin of Kathok Getse Rinpoche
Kathok Getse Rinpoche was born in Golok, Eastern Tibet, and was recognized by the 16th Karmapa, Jamyang Khyentse Chokyi Lodro and Adzom Gyalse Gyurme Dorje as the reincarnation of the Third Katok Getse, Gyurme Tenpa Namgyal.
Spiritual Path of Kathok Getse Rinpoche
From a very early age, Rinpoche received teachings and empowerments from many masters. After coming to exile in 1997, Getse Rinpoche received teachings and empowerments from His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, Taklung Tsetrul Rinpoche, and Penor Rinpoche among others.
Teachers of the Kathok Getse Rinpoche
From a very early age, he received teachings and empowerments from many masters such as:
- Katok Moktsa Rinpoche
- Khenpo Jikme Phuntsok
- The 14th Dalai Lama
- Tubten Pema Trinle, the reincarnation of Adzom Drukpa
- Tulku Nyida, son of Tulku Lhatop, himself a son of Dudjom Lingpa
- 14th Dalai Lama writing to Kathok Getse Rinpoche
14th Dalai Lama and Fourth Kathok Getse Rinpoche
The 14th Dalai Lama wrote about the Fourth Kathok Getse Rinpoche:
Katok Getse Rinpoche, like his previous incarnations, illuminates the teachings of Nyingma, the first Buddhist doctrine of Tibet, and embodies a great living legacy of the Buddhist teachings. Furthermore, some in his series of incarnations have a connection with the past incarnations of the Dalai Lama. For example, when Katok Tsewang Norbu went to Lhasa, the Seventh Dalai Lama, Kalzang Gyatso, held him in high regard and asked him to reverse, through ritual, the Mongolian army in northern Tibet, which he did. The Seventh Dalai Lama, greatly pleased, offered him a handsome reward. The true reincarnation of Katok Rigdzin Tsewang Norbu was the First Katok Getse, Gyurme Tsewang Chokdrup. When he came to Lhasa on pilgrimage he met the Eighth Dalai Lama, Jampal Gyatso, and the two of them immediately began exchanging teachings. This association became an inexhaustible offering that pleased all the buddhas, and great mutual respect developed between them. Later, the Third Katok Getse, Gyurme Tenpa Namgyal, came to Lhasa to meet the Thirteenth Dalai Lama, Thupten Gyatso. He was received with joy and they developed a good relationship. His direct reincarnation, the Fourth Katok Getse, Gyurme Tenpa Gyaltsen, through the power of his previous excellent aspirations and karma, was able to safely arrive in India as a refugee. He and I have connected as student and teacher.
The relationship between Nepal and Kathok Getse Rinpoche
Since coming into exile in 1997, he spent many years in retreat in Nepal and was the current leader of Katok Ritrod Monastery in Nepal.
His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama wrote of Getse Rinpoche:
Katok Getse Rinpoche, like his previous incarnations, illuminates the teachings of Nyingma, the first Buddhist doctrine of Tibet, and embodies a great living legacy of the Buddhist teachings.
Death of The Nyingma head Kathok Getse Rinpoche
Nyingma head Kathok Getse Rinpoche has passed away at the age of 64 in Nepal following a car accident.
The accident took place outside the Kathmandu valley. He was in retreat and slipped while coming out of the retreat place, causing severe injury. His monastery is in a hilly area three hours drive from Kathmandu. His body was kept in Adzom Kathok Choekhorling to allow the public to pay their respects.