Wangchuk Dorje, 9th Karmapa Lama

Wangchuk Dorje, 9th Karmapa Lama

Wangchuk Dorje, 9th Karmapa Lama

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Wangchuk Dorje (1556–1603) was the ninth Gyalwa Karmapa, head of the Kagyu School of Tibetan Buddhism.

Wangchuk Dorje was born in Treshod, Kham. According to legend, he said after being born: "I am Karmapa."

He received his education from Shamar Köncho Yenlak, the fifth Shamarpa, in a nomadic camp which traveled through Tibet but also passed through present day Mongolia and Bhutan. During his travels many monasteries were founded. Wangchuk also wrote many classic Buddhist texts, many of which are still being taught today.

Wangchuk Dorje was not only a spiritual leader, but was also a mediator in conflicts. He was invited by the king of Sikkim to settle a dispute and while there he founded three monasteries one of them being in Rumtek which is currently the most important monastery of the lineage after the Chinese occupation of Tibet. The other two are Phodong and Ralang Monastery

Near the end of his life, Yonten Gyatso was installed as the fourth Dalai Lama by the Mongolians. Wangchuk Dorje tried to reconquer the power of Lhasa together with monks of the Gelugpa sect who didn't recognize the fourth Dalai Lama. The conquest was violent and monasteries were conquered by force. During this time Yonten Gyatso died under suspicious circumstances. This ultimately resulted in the next Karmapa...
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