Enthronement ceremony of Khen Rinpoche Geshe Gendun Choephel, Sera Je Monastery, Bylakuppe, South India, July 2016. Photo via http://www.serajeymonastery.org

A new stupa is being built at Sera Je Monastery for Khen Rinpoche Geshe Gendun Choephel who passed away on July 31, 2016. Among Khen Rinpoche’s many students is Tenzin Ösel Hita, the recognized reincarnation of FPMT founder Lama Yeshe.

“My dearest and most precious Teacher, Friend, Mother, Father and Khen Rinpoche, Geshe Gendun Choephel, just passed away in a very sudden way,” Ösel wrote on his Facebook page on July 31. “He was the closest person in my life, he raised me and gave me everything, taught me and loved me like no one else. It is devastating and so hard to accept, but I feel joy for having known him and it has been such an honor to grow up under his guidance. Thank you so much Gen-la, you are always in my heart.”

Ösel requested Lama Zopa Rinpoche to assist with this precious stupa, and Rinpoche, through the Stupa Fund, offered US$20,000 toward its completion. 

Young Osel with Geshe Gendun Choephel (left) and Lama Zopa Rinpoche (right) at Sera Je Monastery.

Building stupas helps develop so much peace and happiness for numberless sentient beings. As a result, wars, disease, and desire will all be pacified. Instead of feeling hopeless, people will gain courage. This is about peace – for the beings who see it, for the whole country, for the entire world, for all sentient beings.” — Lama Zopa Rinpoche

Tenzin Osel Hita with Geshe Gendun Choephel and brother Kunkyen.

Geshe Gendun Choephel was born in 1941 in Karze in eastern Tibet. He later joined Sera Je Monastery in 1955 and went into exile in India in 1959, joining the Buxa Duar community to study and practice. He was among the foremost group who re-established Sera Je in Bylakuppe, South India. After earning his Lharampa Geshe degree, Khen Rinpoche began teaching at the monastery and did so for the rest of his life. He was enthroned as the 75th abbot of Sera Je Monastery on July 18, 2016. 

The total cost for this stupa is US$27,000 and the remaining US$7,000 will be raised by Sera Je monks.  Please rejoice in the creation of this holy object dedicated to a most kind teacher, Geshe Gendun Choephel. 

If you would like to contribute to the building of holy objects around the world, you are welcome to offer any amount to the Holy Objects Fund which contributes to the creation of stupas, prayer wheels and statues. The Stupa Fund is a sub fund of the Holy Objects Fund. 

Lama Zopa Rinpoche translated “Padmasambhava’s Instruction on Offerings to Stupas,” which details the benefits of prostrating to, circumambulating, making offerings, and offering service to stupas. Also available is, “Lama Zopa Rinpoche’s Advice for Circumambulation.”