Gyaltsab Rinpoches have always been the Vajra Regents
of the Karmapas and caretakers of the Karmapa's monasteries.
Gyalsab Rinpoche, through his long line of incarnations,
has been known for being an expert in meditation.
In Tibet, Rinpoche was known as Tsurphu Gyaltsab Rinpoche,
because Rinpoche was the Regent of the Karmapa at Tsurphu
Goshir Gyaltsab Rinpoche is the emanation of the Bodhisattva
Vajrapani. In the past, Rinpoche incarnated as Ananda,
the disciple of the Buddha Shakyamuni who had perfect
memory and was responsible for reciting all of the sutras
(teachings) of the Buddha before the assembly. Therefore
Ananda was responsible for keeping all the words of the
Buddha perfectly intact.
Gyaltsab Rinpoche also incarnated as one of the main ministers
of the Dharma King Songtsen Gampo of Tibet. He was
also Palju Wangchuk, one of the twenty-five principle
disciples of Guru Padmasambhava. During Milarepa’s
lifetime, Rinpoche appeared as Repa-zhiwa U.
The 1st Gyaltsab Rinpoche Paljor
Dondrub (1427-1489) received the glorious title
Goshir from the Emperor of China. He took
birth in Nyemo Yakteng. His Eminence, who was cared
since childhood by the Karmapa, was appointed as the Karmapa’s
secretary and regent at fourteen years old. He received
the complete transmission of the lineage from the Karmapa,
Jampal Zangpo, and the 3rd Shamar Rinpoche. He became
the main teacher to the next Karmapa.
The 2nd Gyaltsab Rinpoche Tashi
Namgyal (1490 - 1518) received the Red Crown which
liberates on sight from the Karmapa. This Red Crown
indicates the inseparability of the Karmapa and Gyaltsab
Rinpoche, and also indicates that their enlightened minds
are equal in nature. Rinpoche recognized the 8th
Karmapa and was responsible for his education.
The 3rd Gyaltsab Rinpoche Drakpo
Paljor (1519-1549) took birth south of Lhasa and
was appointed as the Karmapa’s main regent.
The 4th Gyaltsab Rinpoche Dragpa
Dundrub (1550-1617) was also born near Lhasa and
received the transmission of the lineage from the Karmapa
and the 5th Shamarpa. He was renown for his commentaries
and attracted hundreds of disciples.
The 5th Gyaltsab Rinpoche Dragpa
Choyang (1618-1658) was enthroned by the 6th Shamar
Rinpoche. He spent the majority of his life in meditation.
He was also very close to His Holiness the 5th Dalai Lama,
as they were strongly connected spiritual friends.
Before the 10th Gyalwa Karmapa fled Tibet due to the Mongol
invasion, the Karmapa handed over the mantel of the lineage
to Gyaltsab Rinpoche.
The 6th Gyaltsab Rinpoche Norbu
Zangpo (1660-1698) was enthroned by the 10th Karmapa,
after taking birth in Eastern Tibet. He meditated
very deeply and wrote numerous commentaries.
The 7th Gyaltsab Rinpoche Konchog
Ozer (1699-1765) took birth near Lhasa and was
enthroned by the 12th Karmapa. He became one of
the main root gurus of the 13th Karmapa, and transmitted
to the Gyalwa Karmapa the lineage.
The 8th Gyaltsab Rinpoche Chophal
Zangpo (1766-1817) had the 13th Gyalwa Karmapa
and the 8th Situ Rinpoche as his main teachers.
He became a renown master of meditation and accomplish
high states of realization.
The 9th Gyaltsab Rinpoche Yeshe
Zangpo (1821-1876) and the 10th
Gyaltsab Rinpoche Tenpe Nyima (1877 - 1901) closely
guarded the precious transmissions of the Kagyu lineage:
receiving them and passing them onto the other lineage
masters. Both spent their lives in deep meditation.
The 11th Gyaltsab Rinpoche Dragpa
Gyatso (1902-1949) was recognized by the 15th Gyalwa
Karmapa and transmitted the lineage.
The 16th Karmapa
Rangjung Rigpe Dorje recognized the present and 12th
Gyaltsab Rinpoche while He was still in his mother’s
womb. His parents were from Nyimo, near Lhasa.
Soon after his recognition in 1959, His Eminence fled
into exile with the 16th Gyalwa Karmapa.
The Gyalwa Karmapa carried Rinpoche on his back while
traveling across the Himalayas into exile. He soon
settled at Rumtek Monastery in Sikkim and received the
wished for him to study in a modern school. However, Gyaltsabpa
left the school one night and traveled ten miles back
to Rumtek alone. His devotion to the Karmapa and
to the lineage was unparalleled.
His Eminence learned the dharma with the other heart sons
of the Karmapa such as Jamgon Kongtrul Rinpoche and Tai
Situ Rinpoche. Like most of his incarnations, he
spends his life in meditation and taking care of the seat
of the Karmapa. He currently in Sikkim and is the
Regent there representing the lineage. He oversees
the activities and functions of Rumtek and at his own
monasteries, such as Ralang, in Sikkim.
In 1992, Gyaltsabpa
and Tai Situpa enthroned the 17th Gyalwa Karmapa in Tibet.
The Karmapa has since fled to India and Gyaltsab Rinpoche
will help prepare for His Holiness the Karmapa’s return
Like Situ Rinpoche, Gyaltsab Rinpoche is one of the main
teachers of HH the 17th Gyalwa Karmapa and already has
bestowed transmissions (such as the Rinchen Terdzo) to