The Mindrolling Monastery is both gorgeous and profound in history. Founded in 1676 in the Drachi Valley by the Great King Rigzin Terdak Lingpa, the Mindrolling Monastery attracts monks and Buddhist Masters from around the world. Throughout its history the monastery has been revered as the “Perfect Place for Emancipation”. In fact, that is what the word Mindrolling means in Tibetan. Up to the current time an unbroken linage of masters has resided in this ‘perfect’ temple. Of the six most influential schools for the Dzogchen teachings Mindrolling is considered to be the most important monastery.
As is the case with most monastery’s throughout Tibet, the Mindrolling monastery has seen its fair share of violence, most of which has taken place in recent years. In 1959 the Chinese invaded Tibet making it a dangerous place for Buddhist monks to reside along with their precious teachings. Many fled the Chinese invaders and made their way to India. After the monastery was abandoned during the revolt against the Communist Chinese it suffered extensive damages and is still under re-construction to this day.
Once the majority of the 300 monks residing in Mindrolling made their way to India they began the process of creating a new Mindrolling monastery in 1965. They built the monastery near Clement Town in Dehra Dun, in the state of Uttarakhand, India. Today the Indian monastery is widely known and revered by the Dharma world as being the location where the precious secret Vajrayana Doctrine is kept safe. Since its founding, the Midrolling monastery in India has grown exponentially thanks to the efforts of Khochhen Rinpoche who escaped to India in 1959. Rinpoche was considered to be at an early age the reincarnation of another significant Buddhist master Namdrol Sangpo Rinpoche, by the 8th Mindrolling Khenchen. He was extremely successful in his work and the monastery now is home to over 500 monks and masters.
One feature that stands out to the many visitors of Mindrolling is the 190 foot tall Stupa picturing the Buddha’s descent from the God of Realms that is dedicated to the world’s peace. It is a towering and impressive white with gold embellishments located just outside of the monastery. It is a reminder of the monk’s purpose and goal on the world scene. The monastery is very much active and although it doesn’t have the ancient structures and appeal of many other older monasteries’s it continues to expand to the delight of the surrounding communities.
In addition to the monastery, Rinpoche has also built a school for poor children and also a clinic for those desperately in need of health care. His holiness has implemented the teachings of the monks as perfectly as is possible, and any visitor to the temple can clearly see this.