In 2008, the Jindhag Foundation began to support two monasteries in exile that are urgently in need of assistance.

Kham Kathog Monastery

Tibetan Settlement, Sataun, District Sirmur, Himachal Pradesh

Kham Kathog monastery was build over 35 years ago at a small  Tibetan settlement at Satuan in Sirmur district in Himachal  Pradesh. Kham Kathog was one of the six main seats of learning  centers in Tibet - the six are Mindroling, Namdrolding, Shechen,  Dzogchen, Dorjee Drag and Kham Kathog.  While all the other five  main learning seats of Nyingma tradition in exile have developed to  a great extend,  only Kham Kathog remained undeveloped.  His  Holiness the Dalai Lama tried several times to uplift the  conditions of Kham Kathog Monastery through the Department of  Religion and Culture of Tibetan Administration but it remained  undeveloped. It seems that His Holiness the Dalai Lama has not been  informed well about the true situation of Kham Kathog monastery.

There are only three monks including the  present head lama of the Kham Kathog monastery. Many years ago,  three small monks were admitted to the monastery. Of the three two died several years ago. Now only one young monk is left at the  monastery. His name is Jamyang. All the other few elderly monks  have either died or left the monastery. Jamyang used to stay with  his parents at Satuan as there is no monk hostel to stay and no  food at the monastery. He used to keep the key of the main temple.  The other two monks are the present head lama tulku Pema Namgyal  and his attendant Tsewang Namgyal. They both are from the same  monastery in Tibet and have come to India together from Tibet about  7 yeas ago.

There is no food, no hostel and no education at the  monastery. No young monk can be admitted to the monastery without  these most basic facilities. So, before admitting any monk, there  is a great need of hostel for at least twenty monks or more. The  monks can be admitted one by one when there is enough rooms to stay  and food to eat first. Then religious education will naturally be  there at the same time. Thereafter, the unique traditions of Kham  Kathog can be learned, preserved and promoted. At the moment Kham  Kathog that once enjoyed as one of the greatest learning centers in  Tibet has now become an extremely sad situation. How can that be  like this?

If the monastery doesn't receive any support, then there is a great  danger that the present three monks will also not be able to stay  there for long. There is very small land for the monastery but there is enough land  for the construction of a monk's hostel beside the monastery. 

Gongkar Choede Monastery

Khera Tibetan Colony, District Dehradun, Uttarkhand, India

There are 55 monks in total including the head lama of the  monastery. There is no any old aged monk in the monastery. There  are 7 monks graduated from Sakya College in Dehradun and 6 monks  graduated from Dzongsar Institute in Tibetan settlement which is  about less then 3 hours by car from Dharamsala. Some of them used  to teach Tibetan -  writing, reading and grammar to the young  monks. The senior monks teach prayers, rites and rituals to the  young monks.  Some seniors are on retreat. There are 21 young monks  from 8 years to 16 years. 

The name of the head lama is Tulku Dorjee Dhenpa (33 years  old). He is the head of Dzongpa (one of the four Sakya traditions -  Sakya, Ngorpa, Tsarpa and Dzongpa). All the other three traditions  are in good condition in exile. Dzongpa is the only one which is far behind in its development,  spiritually, educationally and economically.  Tulku Dorjee Dhenpa  is graduated from Sakya College in Dehradun.

he name of the Abbot of the monastery is Khenpo Jampal  Choezin. He is also graduated from Sakya College. He teaches  Buddhist philosophy to the young monks.

Besides regular religious  activities of the monastery itself the monastery all the religious  functions and activities of the Tibetan community there are being  led by the monastery. The monks also perform all the rites and  rituals, prayers for the community as well as for the Tibetan  individuals whenever needed and invited to do. The monastery is  very helpful to the Tibetan community living there.

Though some of the young monks do have sponsorships,  the majority of the monks don't have any sponsorships. The monks  need sponsorships for their living and education. Three young  monks live in a small room, and a teacher and a young monk are  required to live in one room. Only the Abbot has one room for  himself. There are only 15 rooms in total hostel for 55 number of  monks. All the rooms are equal in size. Of the 55 monks, some stay  outside the monastery on retreat and some are in Dzongsar Institute  for education. If they all come together there at the monastery,  then there is no room for them to stay. There is acute shortage of  rooms for the young monks as well as for the teachers.

Other monasteries in need of aid

The following is a preliminary list of monasteries and nunneries that the Jindhag Foundation has identified as being in need of aid. To become a Jindhag or sponsor for one of these monasteries, please see our How to Help page.

Sa-ngag Choekhorling Monastery

Tradition of Tibetan Buddhism: Nyingmapa — a unique branch that is on the very verge of extinction and must be saved by admitting more monks and nuns.

Head Lama: Taklung Tsetrül Rinpoche, a most renowned Tibetan spiritual master

Total Number of Monks: 33

Education: Buddhist philosophy, rites and rituals, Tibetan language

Remarks: Established over 30 years ago but remains undeveloped and poor

Location: Mundgod, India

Kham Kathok Monastery

Tradition of Tibetan Buddhism: Nyingmapa

Head Lama: Out of station

Total Number of Monks and Nuns: 3 monks and 1 nun

Education: Buddhist philosophy, rites and rituals, Tibetan language

Remarks: Established over 30 years ago but remains undeveloped and poor; it urgently needs assistance to save its unique tradition from becoming extinct

Location: Himachal Pradesh, India

Pangang Ritroe Monastery cum Nunnery

Tradition of Tibetan Buddhism: Nyingmapa

Head Lama: Khenpo Thupten, a very renowned scholar and practitioner (recently deceased)

Total Number of Monks and Nuns: 38 monks and 83 nuns

Education: Buddhist philosophy, rites and rituals, Tibetan language

Remarks: Established over 30 years ago but remains undeveloped and poor.

Location: Pangan Cave, Manali, Himachal Pradesh, India

Takten Phuntsok Choeling Monastery

Tradition of Tibetan Buddhism: Jonangpa, a unique Tibetan tradition of Buddhism that does not belong to Gelug, Sakya, Kagyu, or Nyingma.

Head Lama: Khalkha Jetsun Dampa Rinpoche, a high-ranking lama

Total Number of Monks: 38

Education: Buddhist philosophy, rites and rituals, Tibetan language

Remarks: A recently re-established monastery that needs assistance for the revival of its unique traditions.

Location: Sanjauli, Shimla, Himachal Pradesh, India

Gongkar Choedhe Monastery

Tradition of Tibetan Buddhism: Sakya Dzongpa, a unique tradition of Tibetan Buddhism

Head Lama: Gongkar Dorje Denpa rinpoche

Total Number of Monks: 33

Education: Buddhist philosophy, rites and rituals, Tibetan language

Remarks: Fecently re-established monastery needs assistance for the revival of its unique tradition.

Location: Laldang (Tibetan Colony), Plot Brotiwala, Vikas Nagar, Dehradun, Uttarkhand, India

Drupgue Thoesamling Monastery

Tradition of Tibetan Buddhism: Drugpa Kagyu

Head Lama: Drakseng Rinpoche

Total Number of Monks: 10

Education: Buddhist philosophy, rites and rituals, Tibetan language

Remarks: The monastery was established many years ago but remains undeveloped and needs assistance.

Location: Gulledhalla, Bylakuppe, Mysore, Karnataka, India

Jang Tana Theckchok Norbu Choeling Monastery

Tradition of Tibetan Buddhism: Kagyupa

Head Lama: Tana Drubgyud Rinpoche

Total Number of Monks: 15

Education: Rites and rituals

Remarks: The monastery was established over 30 years ago but remains undeveloped and needs assistance for reconstruction of the Prayer Hall, which is in very bad condition.

Location: Kollegal Taluk, Chamraj Nagar, Mysore, Karnataka, India

Ogyen Chokhorling Nunnery

Tradition of Tibetan Buddhism: Nyingmapa

Head Lama: Drakyab Khamtul Rinpoche

Total Number of Nuns: 25

Education: Rites and rituals

Remarks: The nunnery was established over many years ago but remains undeveloped and needs assistance for food and accomodations.

Location: Bhojogari Gangtok, Sikkim, India

Tsang Domar Namdoling Monastery

Tradition of Tibetan Buddhism: Nyingmapa

Total Number of Monks: 12

Education: Rites and rituals

Remarks: The monastery was established some years ago and most of the monks are very young. They need food, shelter and education.

Location: Mcleod Ganj, Dharamsala, Kangra, Himachal Pradesh, India

Zilnon Kagyeling Monastery

Tradition of Tibetan Buddhism: Nyingmapa — a unique tradition that needs to be developed by admitting more monks. They need assistance for food, accomodations, and religious education.

Overseer: Tubten Lunring, Minister of the Department of Religion and Culture

Total Number of Monks: 14

Education: Rites and rituals

Remarks: The monastery was established 15 years ago by Ngagpa Rinpoche, with the help and guidance of the Office of H.H. the Dalai Lama, in order to preserve its unique tradition. The monastery needs to be developed and needs accommodations for newcomers and food for its residents.

Location: Mcleod Ganj, Dharamsala, Kangra, Himachal Pradesh, India

Gaden Chuwar Drophen Ling Monastery

Tradition of Tibetan Buddhism: Kagyupa

Head Lama:Tinley Chopel Rinpoche

Total Number of Monks: 30

Education: Buddhist philosophy, rites and rituals, Tibetan language

Remarks: The monastery was established after 1959 in a remote border region of Nepal. The presence of Maoist guerrillas in the region have put the monks and their sacred texts, which date from the time of Milarepa, in grave danger. Financial aid is urgently needed in order to airlift the monks and texts to Kathmandu and re-establish a new home for the monastery.

Location: Lambabagar, District Dolkha, Nepal