Chamgon Tai Situ Rinpoche is the twelfth in the unbroken line of emanations that began in the 11th century. A spiritual master of unsurpassed significance in the history of Tibetan Buddhism, he is the current holder of the Kagyu Lineage. Formally trained by the Sixteenth Gyalwang Karmapa, he is now supervising the education of the Seventeenth Gyalwang Karmapa, Orgyen Trinley Dorje.
Chamgon Tai Situ Rinpoche, an emanation of the Bodhisattva Maitreya, has been prophesied to become the next Buddha, the fifth of the 1,000 Buddhas to appear in this fortunate aeon. His first emanation was King Indrabodhi, a disciple of the Buddha Shakyamuni. In Tibet, Tai Situ Rinpoche was born as Milarepa’s famed teacher, Marpa the translator , who made three trips to India and underwent many hardships in order to acquire the Buddha’s teachings. The transmissions and teachings he brought back to Tibet form the core instructions of the Kagyu Lineage.
Guru Rinpoche clearly foretold all the names of the Tai Situpa incarnations in a treasure text known as The Command Seal of Prophecies (Tib. Lungten Kagyama), which was discovered by the great terton Sangye Lingpa. The renowned line of Tai Situpa incarnations began with Drogon Rechen (1088-1158), a close disciple of the first Karmapa, Dusum Khyenpa. Since that time, the Tai Situpa incarnations have had a very close connection with the Karmapas; from one lifetime to the next, they have alternated as teacher and disciple. The Sixteenth Gyalwang Karmapa predicted that Tai Situ Rinpoche would be his main teacher in his next life. He entrusted the letter predicting the place and circumstances of his next incarnation to the present Tai Situ Rinpoche, who was instrumental in finding and enthroning the Seventeenth Gyalwang Karmapa in Tibet.
The Twelfth Tai Situ Rinpoche was born in 1954 and was enthroned at an early age at Palpung Monastery, the principal monastic seat of the Tai Situpas in eastern Tibet. He received important transmissions from many great masters, notably the Sixteenth Gyalwang Karmapa, Kyabje Dorje Chang Kalu Rinpoche and His Holiness Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche.
A renowned artist and calligrapher, Tai Situ Rinpoche teaches in fluent English and is the author of several books.