Lama Gonpo’s Last Wish
Nearing the end of his life, while in a hospital in China, Gonpo asked to be brought back to his home in Dzachuka. He instructed his family to give up the increasingly elusive mission to obtain a liver transplant, telling them that the money would be much better spent to help complete the Kilung Shedra and Community Center so that children and monks could be educated.
In keeping with Gonpo’s end-of-life wish, we are dedicating the Community Center to Gonpo to honor him and keep his memory and inspiration alive for generations to come. Lama Gonpo lived his life in service to others, and establishing a community center will continue his life’s work.
This center, on the first floor of the building, will house a classroom for girls, a community hall, and meeting room. It also includes a medical clinic, where there will be local access for public health education, immunization, and check-ups.
Here there will be screenings for the Hydatid disease, and immunizations for Hepatitis B and Tuberculosis. These diseases took Gonpo’s life, and are all too common in Dzachuka. Kilung Rinpoche writes, “It was so painful to see Gonpo and many people suffering and dying from these diseases that are preventable. We really don’t want to see it happening again and again.”
About Lama Gonpo
Gonpo was always ready to help others, never saying no when people asked. He had energy that overflowed, inspiring others to pitch in along with him to accomplish difficult tasks, or to extend warmth and kindness wherever needed.
Here are some examples of his accomplishments:
• Selected as representative of 46 monasteries in Sershul County, with prize as “good model” from Ganzi Prefecture
• Awarded prize as “excellent communicator in heartfelt ways” from community
• Caring for and teaching young monks for 20 years; teaching young kids of the community to read and write, including taking them to school
• Led the Yushu earthquake relief team.
• Worked alongside Chinese friends to dig a well for Kilung community
• Accompanying people to hospital and acting as interpreter and advocate
• Worked with local officials to accomplish monastery affairs and Kilung Foundation projects without obstacle
• Discipline Master at Kilung Monastery for four years
• Vajra Master for leading Drupchen and other important practices
• Chodpon, overseeing the making of tormas and preparation for the annual Drupchen
• Musician of all the Buddhist liturgical instruments
• Assistance of all kinds to members of his family, community, and monastery
Kilung Rinpoche: “We would love to be reminded of Gonpo continually, seeing his energy and aspiration reverberating around his community. One may think that once a person is dead, there’s no longer anything left besides their belongings. But in the spiritual world of Buddhism we believe there is life before life, and life after life. Which means this physical body is not really who we are. It’s just a conveyance to live in the world we’ve chosen. Unborn and unceasing, the very intrinsic nature of mind itself has the capacity to contain all the wisdom aspects of one’s way of life. And that’s without relying on the physical body. We all can bring this great energy in to further benefit more beings. And in this way, Gonpo’s life can extend to benefit Kilung community, and beyond.”