pal gyi ling

Boudhanath Stupa, near Pay Gyi Ling Monastery

Boudhanath Stupa

Lama Tsering Wangdu Rinpoche’s monastic seat is located Tusal, Boudanath, a short walk from the Great Stupa. Lama Wangdu Rinpoche founded the monastery in 2004, after the Dalai Lama asked him to teach a new generation of monastic and lay practitioners in the Chod and Shije tradition. With financial support from the Dalai Lama and a group of patrons in Nepal, Rinpoche acquired and renovated the old Shekar Chode monastery. Renamed Pal Gyi Tingri Langkor Jangsem Kunga Ling, or just Pal Gyi Ling, the monastery is home to approximately twenty monks in all stages of training, along with Rinpoche and a small support staff.

While training as Chodpas in the tradition of Padamapa Sangye and Machik Labdron, the monks of Pay Gyi Ling also study and practice Jigme Lingpa’s Longchen Nyningthig. While at the monastery, monks learn to read TIbetan, study English, master ritual instruments and practices such as torma-making and playing musical instruments, and spend countless hours practicing Chod.  Monks that complete the basic training, which takes ten to twelve years, may go on to undertake the traditional three year closed retreat. Rinpoche provides monks with housing, food, robes, and practice materials, as many of the many of the their families do not have the means to support them.

monks listening to rinpoche teac

Monks listening to RInpoche teach

Pal Gyi Ling also serves a growing group of lay practitioners who come from all over the world to study Chod, learn the yogic songs and dances of the tradition, and participate in daily practice. Some practitioners live in Kathmandu, studying at the monastery for weeks or months, while others visit to deepen their understanding before returning to their homelands to continue their practice.

The monastery is also an important part of life for local Nepalis and TIbetans. Twice each month, Rinpoche offers a public Chod feast along with feasts on Buddhist holy days and during Losar. As he has done for years, Rinpoche also holds a daily public audience that often attracts hundreds of people.