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Choying Dorje 1604 - 1674

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The tenth Karmapa, Choying Dorje (1604-1674), was born in Khaytri Tang in Golok province, in the far north-east of Tibet. He was identified as the reincarnation and enthroned by the sixth Shamarpa, Chokyi Wangchuk, who also gave him the full Kagyu transmission.

The Karmapa travelled throughout Tibet, teaching and promoting the welfare of the people, until certain political difficulties arose. Ngawang Lozang Gyamtso, the fifth Dalai Lama, had become the official ruler of Tibet, a role that would continue to be filled by his successive incarnations.

He established a pact with the Mongol ruler Goshir Khan; the ensuing sectarian persecution severely weakened Kagyu doctrine in Tibet, and placed the Karmapa in such a difficult position that he was forced to leave the country. Travelling through Nepal and Burma to Yunnan in China, Choying Dorje made virtue of necessity and founded monasteries along his route.

Twenty years were to pass before he could return to his homeland. He identified the seventh Shamarpa, Yeshe Nyingpo, and with the transmission of the Kagyu teachings, selected him as lineage holder.







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