Our Lineage

Kathok Khenchen Nagwang Palzang and Khenchen Münsel Rinpoche


Khenchen Munsel Rinpoche was a highly accomplished and respected Dzogchen Master and scholar who in turn instructed some of the greatest living and present-day Lamas. In his early years Rinpoche travelled all the way from Golok to Degai to enter the main Kathok monastary where he studied under many scholors. Later on he received personal pointing out instructions on Dzog-Pa Chen-Po from the most accomplished master of the time, Khenpo Nagwang Palzang, an emanation of Vimalimtra. Khenpo Nagwang Palzang predicted that if he continued to accomplish DzogPa ChenPo practice he would benefit countless beings. Even during transitional times in Tibet, when he was imprisoned for more than twenty years, even under difficult circumstances, he continuously carried on the practice of  Dzogchen  with great diligence, according to Long-Chen Nying-Thig lineage. As Rinpoche had predicted his enlightened practice benefitted countless students in Tibet who were naturally drawn to him although he lived an extremely simple lifestyle in a very remote area. From the many many disciples of Khenpo Münsel  we have the great good fortune to be in the presence of such Masters as H.H. Kathok Getse Rinpoche, H.E. Lingtrul Rinpoche, H.E. Garchen Rinpoche, and Tulku Karzang Rinpoche. Of all the lineages of the Dzog Pa Chen Po tradition Munsel Rinpoche's is  like  a heartdrop descending directly from the primordial Buddha Samantrahadra. It is so pure and unpolluted that it continues like the waxing moon to become fuller and brighter in the darkness of these degenerative times.

Lingtrul Rinpoche

Lingtrul Rinpoche is our main teacher and the founder of this Kathok Center.

A Brief Biography of H.E. Ven. Lingtrul Kadak Chöying Dorje (Lingtrul Rinpoche)

Lingtrul Rinpoche was recognised from the age of three, by H.H. Kathok Chatsa Rinpoche as the reincarnation of Ling Lama Chökyi Dorje, (the founder of Tra Ling monastery) and thus is an emanation of Longchenpa. He is the 8th throneholder of Tra Ling, Golok.

He was born in Amdo-Golok in 1955 to a humble nomad  family. Due to conditions at the time his identity was kept secret.

As a young tulku, Lingtrul Rinpoche was forced to work in labor camps and hide any sign of interest in Buddhism. In 1983 there were more enlightened policies and the restrictions on religious practice were lifted. Finally, Rinpoche was able to return to his own monastary and was officially enthroned. He continuously studied with his tutor and other great teachers with great diligence. Later on he went to meet with his root teacher, the great Khenpo Münsel to receive Dzonchen instructions.

The lineage of the Clear Light Great Perfection teachings began with the Primordial Buddha and was passed gradually from teacher to disciple, through Khenpo Münsel  to Lingtrul Rinpoche. As one of Khenpo Münsel’s closest heart sons, Lingtrul Rinpoche received all the transmissions of the Clear Light Great Perfection over a period of 3-4 years. In retreat he practiced all the development stages of the Vajrayana from the preliminary practices through Trekchöd and Todgyal. He also received all of the Longchen Nyingthig transmissions as well as many other empowerments.

At the age of 37, Lingtrul Rinpoche journeyed to central Tibet, Nepal and India to visit the great power spots in these holy lands. While in Sikkim he also met with H.H. Dodrubchen Rinpoche and received many sacred teachings. Shortly thereafter he was invited to the United States.

Lingtrul Rinpoche travels world wide to the many places where he is invited: Tra Ling Monastery in Golok,  Orgen Dorje Den in Oakland, California, Tashi Choling, in Ashland, Oregon and throughout the USA, Brazil,  Malaysia, Hong Kong, Taiwan and his Kathok Centre here in Qualicum Beach, BC, Canada.

Khenpo Panchen Dawa


Khenpo Panchen Dawa was the personal tutor of  Lingtrul Rinpoche and Karzang Rinpoche and also was, himself, a student of both Rinpoches in their previous incarnations. He came to Tra Ling  Monastery when he was 16 and passed into parinirvana on August 19, 2014. He lived through intense periods of social change in Tibet and in spite of that he continously maintained great devotion and connection to his lineage.  Khenpo Panchen Dawa was an amazing scholar and accomplished master but he lived a very simple life in solitary retreat, dilligently continuing his daily practice. He began his day meditating from about four in the morning and during the day he only engaged in social contact if he had to give very important teachings.  Otherwise he only did his four sessions of practice. His committment to his spiritual practice was very well known and continues to be an inspiration to all. He said instead of spending his time traveling and  having social interactions the most beneficial offering he could make is to practice. So due to this recognition he spent much of his life in mountain retreat and only took a few select, dedicated students. Lingtrul Rinpoche and Karzang Rinpoche are very blessed have been two of those few students.

View from the Top of the World