Lama Gen Lobsang Choephel
Our Teacher & Spirtual Director
Lama Gen Lobsang Choephel was born in 1924. He entered Ganden Khachoe Monastery in Tibet at the age of five. After 31 years at the monastery he escaped for Nepal at the time of the Chinese invasion. He then spent eight years in strict meditation retreat in a small cave high in the mountains on the the Tibetan-Nepalese border 15,000 above sea level. After eight years he left for Dharmasala, India, where he spent another ten years in strict retreat in the mountains above Dharmasala. After his retreat he served as the attendant and scribe for H.H. Trijang Rinpoche, the root guru of H.H. the Dalai Lama, for the next six years.
After the passing of Trijang Rinpoche, Gen-la took up residency at the Dalai Lama’s temple for six more years and worked together with H.H. the Dalai Lama in composing approximately one hundred Tibetan texts. He then moved to Ganden Shartse Monastery in southern India where he spent the next 17 years teaching and accomplishing many more meditation retreats. His first visit to Seattle was in 1997 and lasted only three weeks. A year and a half later he returned to Seattle to raise money for the reconstruction of his monastery, Ganden Khachoe. With the help of his students, after one year, he had raised the funds necessary to rebuild the monastery. Within the following year he completed the construction of the monastery and returned to Seattle for a third time, staying for six months. He came again for a fourth teaching visit in the spring of 2004. Gen-la made his final trip to Seattle in 2007 and is now devoting his time to Ganden Kachoe Monastery and serving as its abbot.