By Tenzin Monlam
Sakya Dagchen Rinpoche (Right) is greeted by Sakya Trizin, file
DHARAMSHALA, May 5: His Eminence Sakya Dagchen Rinpoche Ngawang Kunga Sonam, head of Sakya Phuntsok Phodrang, passed away at the age of 88 on April 29 after prolonged illness in Seattle, United States, and has since entered into meditative state of Thukdam.
“Due to the combined blessings of all the pujas and prayers, until very recently, H.H Dagchen Rinpoche remained in relatively good health for which we are very greatful,” Sakya Phuntsok Phodrang said in its official statement, expressing gratitude to devotees inside Tibet and those in exile.
Phuntsok Phodrang also mentioned that after Rinpoche exits his thukdam state, his devotees and well-wishers would be notified of the time and place for paying their last respects.
The Kashag of the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA) and the Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile (TPiE) both expressed their condolences at the passing away of Dagchen Rinpoche.
“On behalf of the CTA, the Kashag would like to offer its profound condolences to the family and devotees of Sakya Dagchen Rinpoche,” the Kashag said, adding that they pray for his swift rebirth so that he can continue his noble teachings and dharma activities for the benefit of all sentient beings.
Similarly, TPiE in their statement expressed grief over the demise of Dagchen Rinpoche and offered their deepest condolences to his family and disciples.
“Rinpoche has spent his entire lifetime engaged in dharmic activities for the sake of humanity as well as for the collective merit of Tibetans inside and outside Tibet. Therefore, his demise is a huge loss to Tibetan Buddhism as well as to his numerous disciples and devotees,” it said.
Kashag held a prayer service at Gangchen Kyishong at noon today and office remained closed in the afternoon as a mark of respect.