Dharamshala: “Dr Tenzin Dorjee is an inspiration to the new Tibetan generation who are ready to their mark in the emerging field of traditional Buddhist philosophy and modern education,” CTA President Dr Lobsang Sangay said this morning while conferring the Three Wheel Recognition Award to Dr Tenzin Dorjee, Chair of the US Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) and a prominent Tibetan translator (Tib: Lotsawa).
Dr Tenzin Dorjee was awarded the Institute of Buddhist Dialectic (IBD) and Sarah College’s highest Alumni honour, The Three Wheels Recognition Award, for his distinguished contribution in the preservation and promotion of Tibetan language, religion and culture; distinct service in translation; and achievements of excellence in the academic and public field.
Congratulating Dr Tenzin Dorjee for his remarkable trail of achievements, President said, “As a first Tibetan Buddhist to be elected at the helm of the US Commission on International Religious Freedom is a matter of immense pride for Tibetans all around the world.
President Sangay enjoined a collective effort from the Tibetan community as a whole in fully realising the potential of its people and rich Buddhist culture.
“As a community, we must reaffirm the unique cultural and historical knowledge which we have preserved over a millennium and exert collective efforts to fully realise this potential.”
“In foresight, I believe Tibetan Buddhism could become the religion of 21st and 22nd century. The universal humanitarian values that are the bedrock of Tibetan Buddhism, secular and pragmatic approach of Tibetan Buddhism can act as an antidote to the current moral crisis in the world and help our societies become more compassionate and equitable.
Kalon of Department of Education Dr Pema Yangchen, Deputy Speaker of Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile Acharya Yeshi Phuntsok, Director of IBD and Sarah College Geshe Samten Gyatso, Secretary of Department of Religion and Culture, Principal of Sarah College Mr Passang, Members of Library of Tibetan Works and Archives and Sarah College were in attendance at the felicitation ceremony for Dr Tenzin Dorjee.
In his acceptance speech, Dr Tenzin Dorjee said, “It is a prestigious honour to receive this award from the Institute of Buddhist Dialectic and Sarah College, where I have spent years studying Buddhist philosophy and received precious teachings from His Holiness the Dalai Lama and my root guru, the late founder director of Sarah, Ven Lobsang Gyatso. I accept this award not as a recognition of the individual but in honour of the work and service to which I have committed with great hard work.”
Dr Dorjee is a published author and translator of Tibetan Buddhism into English and had also served as translator to His Holiness the Dalai Lama during teachings and talks in India and USA. He is also a prominent native translator (Tib: Lotsawa) of over 30 years expertise.
He was elected as Chair of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) on 12 June 2018. Chair Dorjee was first appointed to the Commission on 8 December 2016 by House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA). He was reappointed by Leader Pelosi on 10 May 2018. USCIRF is a federal government commission established by the 1998 International Religious Freedom Act (IRFA) that monitors the universal right to freedom of religion or belief abroad. Read his full bio here.
Geshe Samten Gyatso, Director of the principal institute of Buddhist Dialectics (IBD), Dharamshala and its branch the College for Higher Tibetan Studies (CHTS), Sarah said, “Considering the vision of late founder director Ven Lobsang Gyatso, it has been decided that from this year onward, ‘The Three Wheel Recognition Award’ would be conferred to the alumni of this institute, who have displayed excellence in the field of Tibetan Buddhism and Culture in particular and society in general.”
“The conferment of the ‘Three Wheel Recognition Award’ is based on the aims and objectives set by His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama and late founder director of the Institute; distinct achievement in the practice and preaching of dharma; distinct contribution in the preservation and promotion of Tibetan language and culture; distinct service in translation and achievements of excellence in other fields by adhering the wishes of His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama and the policies of Central Tibetan Administration,” Geshe Gyatso said.
The Three Wheel is the official emblem of the principal institute of Buddhist Dialectics (IBD), Dharamshala and its branch the College for Higher Tibetan Studies (CHTS), Sarah. Sarah. Dr Dorjee is the first individual to be recognised with the Three Wheel Recognition Award.