Our Founder

Our founder, Tarthang Tulku

Tarthang Tulku Rinpoche was born in Golok, Eastern Tibet in 1935.  Recognized at an early age as a reincarnate lama  (tulku), he received an unparalleled education in Tibet before leaving for India in 1958.  He received transmission of important Tibetan Buddhist lineages from nearly 40 masters, including such extraordinary luminaries as Jamyang Khyentse Chokyi Lodro, Adzom Gyalse Gyurme Dorje, Zhechen Kongtrul, and Tarthang Chogtrul.  While in India he also received rare teaching transmissions from H.H. Dudjom Rinpoche, H.H. Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, H.H. Trulshik Rinpoche, and H.E. Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche, among others.

In 1969, Tarthang Tulku became the first lama of the Nyingma lineage to settle in the United States.  He has written over 34 books that have been translated into various Western languages and adopted for class use by universities around the world.  His books and private teachings form the core of the Nyingma Institute’s manifold courses of study.  Among his many unique accomplishments, Tarthang Tulku is the founder of the Odiyan Buddhist Retreat Center and the Nyingma Monlam Chenmo World Peace Ceremony held annually at Bodh Gaya, India, where, since 1989, he has freely distributed more than five million sacred texts to lamas, monks, and nuns of the Tibetan community.