Previously, Lunngön monastery was a nomadic monastery comprised of tents that in summer and winter moved from one location to another. The ninth abbot, Kyabje Pema Tumdrak Dorje (1934-2009) established a permanent site for the monastery in 1985.
In the past monasteries were for monks to receive teachings and it was rare for lay people to receive them. However an unique characteristic of Lungngon monastery is that from its earliest times lay men and women would receive teachings there such as the teachings on the six bardos.
He gave the empowerment and instructions of the six bardos and the wrathful and peaceful deities of the bardo to
Pema Lhundrup went to Golog where he met Do Khyentse and told him what he had been instructed to do. Do Khyentse was pleased and said to him, “From now on you should give the teachings on the six bardos in Lungngön Monastery.” For many years Pema Lhundrup taught there the six bardos and Liberation Through Hearing in the Bardo. Do Khyentse also taught about the bardo at the monastery.
The six bardo instructions are the profound heart instructions of Guru Rinpoche that were hidden as a treasure and revealed by the Terton Karma Lingpa (1326-1386). This teaching has extremely important instructions. For example it is taught that the six bardos comprise the entire cycle of life of a person, and through being introduced to the six bardos as manifestations of ones own mind, at the first instant of death in the bardo of the true nature, one becomes liberated within the essential basis of the mind, or one becomes liberated later in that bardo of the true nature, when there is the appearance of the peaceful and wrathful deities. After that there is the bardo of becoming when one can enter rebirth as a tulku.
Lama Pema Lhundrup’s passed on his teachings to the Dzogchen master
Kunzang Rigdzin passed them on to
Sonam Khedrup passed them on to
Lama Sang passed these teachings on to myself,
Since Pema Tumdrak Dorje, also known as Lama Sang, passed away, I have dedicated myself to increasing the winter Dharma teachings. In 2010 I gave teachings on The Words of my Perfect Teacher, in 2011 teachings on the six bardos from The Profound Dharma of the Wrathful and Peaceful Deities: Spontaneous Liberation in the Bardo, and in 2012 Tsongkhapa’s graduated path to enlightenment. In this winter of 2013 the teaching I will be giving teachings on The Supreme Continuum, which describes the buddha nature.
The transmission of the teaching or the lineage occurs when a high lama who holds and teaches a lineage gives authorization and and prophecy to those who have correct practice, faith in the lama and the lineage, pure commitment, diligence and wisdom, saying to them that this or that instruction should be their principal practice and that they should spread this lineage to others.
Because of recent improvements in transport reaching the monastery has become easier and the number of people coming to the winter teachings has grown with each year till now its in the thousands and tens of thousands.
My responsibility is to preserve the lineage of instructions from the previous masters. and with a pure motivation provide the right path for the men and women who have a connection with me through karma and prayers, so that love and compassion and the view of dependent origination will arise in their minds, and do that they will be reborn in such realms as Sukhāvati, Zangdok Palri and Shambhala, and so that they will easily attain the state of liberation where all afflictions and obscurations have ceased.
The blessing of this profound Dharma is unsurpassable. The history of these winter teachings is well known. There are many who with faith and devotion received these teachings, practiced them, and had no fear at death. They die practicing the guru yoga or die seeing clearly the deity and the lama. Some see Amitābha come to greet them. Some die giving Dharma teaching to their family. Some die sitting cross-legged, and some while lying in the lion posture.
In recent years, many Chinese and people from other nations have wished to have a connection with these winter teachings. If with faith you rejoice in this, you will certainly receive its blessing along with us. Therefore I have written this brief introductory history of the winter teachings.
Hungkar Dorje. 17th November 2013