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Khacholing’s Resident Teacher


Geshe Ahten belongs to last generation of Tibetans masters trained in Tibet prior to the Chinese occupation in 1959. He and the other monks who fled from Tibet at that time re-established the  monastic learning system in India. He and his fellow teachers from that generation enjoy a  special respect among the Tibetan community in India as guardians of the Tibetan Buddhist lineages.

Geshe Ahten was born in 1938 in Markham in Eastern Tibet. At the age of 11 he became a novice monk at Dzindu Monastery, where the previous incarnation of Gankar Tulku Rinpoche was abbot.

At the age of 16 he entered Gaden Shartse monastery in central Tibet. He completed all the foundational monastic courses, including Buddhist logic and debate, and began his studies of the perfection of wisdom teachings.

Geshe-la was 21 years old when he escaped to India.

In 1966 at the age of 26 Geshe-la received full ordination as a monk (gelong) from His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama. In 1981 he completed three rounds of traditional Gelugpa examinations and was recognized as first in his division. After a wait of several years, Geshe la was awarded the degree of geshe Lharamapa.

Geshe la has also received many major tantric initiations and teachings from His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, from His Holiness’s teachers, the late Ling Rinpoche and the late Trijang Rinpoche, and from other masters trained in Tibet. Geshe Ahten has taught extensively at Gaden Shartse Monastery where he is loved and respected as a great teacher.

At the request of Gankar Tulku Rinpoche, Geshe Ahten came to Khacholing Center to teach. This has provided a rare opportunity for Western students to learn from a great scholar and master.

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