DHARAMSHALA, 1 March: His Eminence the Ninth Khalkha Jetsun Dhampa Dorjee Chang Jampel Namdrol Choekyi Gyaltsen, the spiritual head of Janang tradition of Tibetan Buddhism and the spiritual Buddhist head of Mongolia expires today at 5.58am (IST) in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia. He died at the age of 80.
Ninth Khalkha Jetsun Dhampa was born in Trontsikhang, northern part of Lhasa in 1932 to his father Lobsang Jamphel and mother Yangchen Lhamo. At the age of four, Reting Rinpoche, the regent, many high lamas and state oracles recognized him as the reincarnation of the Eighth Khalkha Jetsun Dhampa. When he was seven years old, he entered Gomang college of Drepung Monastery and received Rabjung vow from Reting Rinpoche. Khalkha Jetsun studied philosophy in Gomang College for fourteen years. At the age of 21, he left Gomang to engage in a series of Chod meditations, living the life of a yogi, while on pilgrimage to the holy sites of Tibet.
At the age of 25, he gave his monastic vows and went to stay at Ganden Phunstok Ling, established by his predecesor Taranatha. After four years, Khalkha Jetsun left Tibet and came into exile when China occupied Tibet in 1959.
During his early years in India, he stayed in Darjeeling and Mysore with his family. In 1981, Khalkha Jetsun moved to Madhya Pradesh and stayed for almost 10 years serving as the community Lama in the locality.
After the collapse of Soviet Union and the new-found religious freedom in Mongolia, His Holiness the Dalai Lama gave an official recognition and acknowledgement of the Ninth Khalkha Jetsun Dhampa as the spiritual head of Buddhism in Mongolia through the Department of Religious Affairs (now the Department of Religion and Culture), Central Tibetan Administration in 1991. Same year, the recognition was publicly announced and the enthronement ceremony was held on 13 January 1992. Since then, Khalkha Jetsun Dhampa moved closer to His Holiness the Dalai Lama and shifted his residence to Dharamshala, India
In 1994, Khalkha Jetsun Dhampa visited Tibet following the instruction of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to receive rare empowerment including that of Jonang tradition.
In 1997, Khalkha Jetsun Dhampa was enthroned as the Spiritual head of Jonang tradition of Tibetan Buddhism and the ceremony took place at Tsuglha Khang, Dharamshala.
In 1999, Rinpoche visited Mongolia and was conferred the title of “The Protector of Beings of the North and Leader of all the Buddhist Schools”and was enthroned at Ertini Jowo Monastery in Mongolia, amidst a grand ceremony.
Khalkha Detsun Dhampa visited many countries including the U.S, Mongolia, Japan, Canada, Russia, Singapore and Taiwan.
Central Tibetan Administration is deeply saddened to learn about the demise of the Ninth Khalkha Jetsun Dhampa and has convened a special prayer this afternoon at Gangkyi Staff Mess hall at 2.30pm in memory of Late Khalkha Jetsun Dhampa and for his speedy reincarnation. All the offices of Central Tibetan Administration remained close after the prayer session.