Venerable Ontul Rinpoche is the 3rd incarnation and he was officially recognised at the age of five in Tibet. The previous Ontul Rinpoche had fallen sick before his death and had a deep wound on the left-hand side of his waist. When he was born the 5th Ontul Rinpoche had a scar in the exact same place.
Before his birth, whilst Rinpoche was still in his mothers womb, the family travelled to Ri-chi-thuk, a place of pilgrimage in Tibet. On the way as they journeyed across rough mountainous terrains his mother was about to fall into a deep valley. Then all the travellers heard a voice saying 'Save my mother'. Everybody was amazed as the voice came from inside the mothers' womb. It was Rinpoche trying to save his mothers life.
Rinpoche escaped from Tibet after the Chinese invasion with his teacher Kharnam and his followers, travelling overland he reached Nepal in 1960. Then in 1962 Rinpoche entered India where he did retreat and studied with Khenpo Thubten in the holy place of Tso Pema until 1965. At that time Rinpoche and a group of practitioners established a spiritual community in the hill-station of Dharamsala where they did their practices in a simple tent.
At the first ceremony in Tso Pema on Guru Rinpoche Day (Tse Chu) they pitched a tent and performed pujas next to the holy lake. Rinpoche invited Khenpo Thubten to give teachings and studied with him until 1970. After that Rinpoche travelled to Ladakh on a teaching tour and bestowing empowerments on the Himalayan Buddhist people.
Through the offerings received he purchased land in Tso Pema and started to construct a monastery in 1971. The temple of the monastery took several years to complete and was finally finished 1975.
Rinpoche received Mahamudra and Dzogchen teachings from H.H. Dalai Lama, H.H. Kyabgon Chetsang Rinpoche, H.H. Dudjom Rinpoche, H.H. Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, H.E. Garchen Rinpoche, Yogi Pachung Rinpoche, Polu Khenchen Dorje Rinpoche, Ven. Khunu Lama Tenzin Gyaltsen, Kyabje Kalu Rinpoche, Khenpo Khedrup Rinpoche and others.
Rinpoche also received teachings from Yogi Chyunga Rinpoche and his personal instructions on the Drikung Kagyu Five-Fold Profound Path of Mahamudra.
In the years that followed Rinpoche went to Drikung Kagyu Monasteries in Ladakh where he received most of the important empowerments, instructions and oral transmissions of the Drikung Kagyu tradition from H.E. Choje Togden Rinpoche.
Today Rinpoche is still in the monastery at Tso Pema, where he spends his time teaching his followers from all over the world.
Click here for Ontul Rinpoche's long life prayer