In the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, there are some special lamas which are called “Rinpoche” which means precious. Usually, they are the reincarnation of previous lamas.

But somewhere once upon a time, there was the first change, the first normal man becoming “Rinpoche”, precious.

Our Khenpo Samteng Gyatso is a Rinpoche, a precious person.

He doesn’t have the label, but he is. It’s enough to stay half an hour with him and you will feel a better person, and so, you will feel happy.

He is kind, compassionate, calm, and wise.

He doesn’t speak much, but when he speaks he says things that you will remember.

If our monastery is still existing, this is due to him.

Khenpo la was born in the village of Ling in Upper Mustang in 1958.

Since when he was a child his dream was to become a monk. His family didn’t want him, so they put him to learn a trade. He learned to make boots and clothes. That’s why he can mend our kids' clothes. And he has taught to our monks how to repair shoes.

When Khenpo-la reached the age of 15, the family gave up. They understood that he would never stop longing to be a monk. So he took the vows.

But at that time, due to the bad conditions of Mustang, the monastery was so poor that no monks were still living there. Some ex monks, now married, were doing some pujas (prayers ceremonies), but that was it.

Khenpo la didn’t waste time. He started to go to other monasteries to ask for teachings, and, at the same time, he carefully kept alive the monastery by performing the main pujas.

He learned how to play the instruments, how to perform correctly all the rituals, the actual practice, and many more things.

And if you think that he was only 15 this is outstanding!

With him, the monastery come back to life and some kids were sent by the families to become monks. Khenpo la brought them to Dehradun in India, to the Sakya school, so that they could have a proper upbringing.

Heroic times. With no money whatsoever, only faith to keep going.

Then, when H.H. the 41st Sakya Trinzin asked our monastery to create the monastic school, Khenpo la went to serve as a spiritual teacher in Taiwan.

A quieter life.

But when Late khenpo Samdup passed away, Khenpo Samten Gyatso has been called back by H.H. to be our monastery's spiritual father.

And he came back to us.

The kids love him, and everybody loves and respects him. Because even if nobody thinks about it, they can feel he is precious one.