Finding the Reincarnation

In 1942/43 a delegation came from Dagyab to Menya in search of the reincarnation of the previous Kyabgoen of Dagyab. The delegates wanted to particularly examine one candidate, the then 2 year old boy, Tsering Wangden of the Sampa-khapa family. The report of their findings was sent to the Central Tibetan government and His Holiness the Dalai Lama for a final decision.

Rinpoches Geburtshaus

Rinpoche´s house of birth


At that time the young boy had already been recognized as the reincarnation of the head lama of Giwakha Monastery in Menya. In 1944 the Dagyab delegation returned to Menya with the official recognition by the Dalai Lama of the four year old boy as the reincarnation of the late Dagyab Kyabgoen. Subsequently, this caused a conflict between the Giwakha and Dagyab monasteries. Until the dispute was settled Rinpoche had to stay in the monastery of Ngamchoe Goenpa in Dartsedo (Chinese “Khangdiang”), which is a border town and served as a neutral place. He stayed there for one year and nine months. During that time the people of Dagyab were not allowed to see him. It was then decided to perform seven days of prayers to Setrab, a protector deity. The ceremonies were to conclude in a divination that would decide on the issue. There were three choices: he was either the head of the Giwakha or the Dagyab monastery, or of both monasteries together. The divination fell in favor of Dagyab. As compensation the Dagyab delegation had to give the Giwakha monastery many material goods. Dagyab Rinpoche's cousin, Choekyi Gyaltsen, was later recognized as the head lama of Giwakha monastery.


When Rinpoche was five years old he moved from Dartsedo to Dagyab county. As soon as he reached the border the traditional first hair cutting ceremony was performed by Tsangsar Rinpoche, a highly respected Sakya lama in Dagyab. Tsangsar Rinpoche became Dagyab Rinpoche's main teacher who taught and guided him in his Buddhist studies and practice for many years.