08 tsara khanchen thubten chokyi dragpa dzapkh

Chokyi Drakpa (1916-2005)

Tsara Dharmakirti Rinpoche was born in Kham Minyak, Tibet. From the time of his conception, many miraculous signs appeared around the tent where his family lived. One day, a large white khata (offering scarf) fell from the sky, and the water inside the jugs that were kept in the tent turned to milk. On the day of Rinpoche's birth, the sky filled with rainbows and seven dragons ascended into the sky.

From the time that Rinpoche was just a little boy, he had an unusual capacity for arousing Bodhichitta. Even at the age of one or two, Rinpoche often assumed the posture and ritual gestures of a great Lama. When he was seven years old, he was recognized as a tulku and given the Tibetan name Chokyi Drakpa (or Tsara Dharmakirti in Sanskrit).

Rinpoche spent twenty years in Chinese prison after the invasion in 1959. Despite the suffering he experienced, he maintained great faith courage. During that time he received a vision from Tara in which he was given a rolled up piece of paper. On the paper was written prophecy that said that in twenty years time the Dharma would once again be allowed to be taught in Tibet. When he was finally released from prison, Tsara Dharmakirti, began the long road of revitalizing the teachings. In 1987, he was able to build his own shedra in Kham Minyak. From that time on, Rinpoche began to travel to monasteries and shedras throughout Tibet once again giving teachings and empowerments.

As Rinpoche grew older, he was often visited in dreams and visions by the yidam deities Tara, Yeshe Tsogyal and Kharsapana. Notably, Rinpoche received the four empowerments from Yeshe Tsogyal directly in one of these visions.