INFORMATION: 17th Karmapa Trinley Thaye Dorje

Karmapa Thaye Dorje, recognized by Shamarpa Rinpoche; not recognized by the Dalai Lama

This article about the Karmapa Trinley Thaye Dorje is featured on our website purely as background information to this article, which compares the Karmapa controversy with that of the Dorje Shugden issue. does not wish to comment on which is the “correct” Karmapa, understanding that this is an internal affair of the Karma Kagyu school, which we are not a part of or associated to.

Birth and recognition

  • Born in 1983 in central Tibet
  • Parents: Nyingma Lama Mipham Rinpoche and Dechen Wangmo
  • At six months old, he was already telling his parents that he was the Karmapa.
  • March 1994, he and his family fled from Tibet to India.
  • March 17 1994: formally recognized and enthroned by H.H. Shamarpa Rinpoche as the 17th Gyalwa Karmapa.
  • The enthronement was done at the Karmapa International Buddhist Institute, New Delhi, India.
  • Thaye Dorje was also recognised by other prominent lamas: Lama Jigme Rinpoche, Topga Yulgyal Rinpoche, Lopon Tsechu Rinpoche, Sherab Gyaltsen Rinpoche, the Venerable Khenchen Rinpoche Drupon Trinley Paljor, and the 4th Trungram Gyaltrul Rinpoche.

Education and Monastic Training

  • After being enthroned, he received traditional monastic training and transmissions.
  • His teachers have included the 14th Sharmar Rinpoche, Professor Sempa Dorje and Khenpo Chödrak Tenphel.
  • Thaye Dorje was enthroned as Vidhyadhara (Knowledge Holder) by the 14th Shamarpa in December 2003 at the Karmapa International Buddhist Institute.

Residence and Rumtek Monastery

  • Thaye Dorje currently resides in Kalimpong, India where he is continuing his monastic education.
  • On May 17, 2006 Thaye Dorje was officially appointed by the Karmapa Charitable Trust as the legal and administrative heir of the 16th Karmapa and can therefore, according to the Trust, live in Rumtek Monastery in Sikkim.
  • However, because the group of monks currently in physical control of Rumtek oppose Thaye Dorje, Thaye Dorje’s headquarters remain in Kalimpong for the time being.
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  1. Karmapa Chenno:)

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.…Instead of turning away people who practise Dorje Shugden, we should be kind to them. Give them logic and wisdom without fear, then in time they give up the ‘wrong’ practice. Actually Shugden practitioners are not doing anything wrong. But hypothetically, if they are, wouldn’t it be more Buddhistic to be accepting? So those who have views against Dorje Shugden should contemplate this. Those practicing Dorje Shugden should forbear with extreme patience, fortitude and keep your commitments. The time will come as predicted that Dorje Shugden’s practice and it’s terrific quick benefits will be embraced by the world and it will be a practice of many beings.

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