The Rise of Buddhism in Buryatia through the Prism of the 7th Pandido Khambo Lama Sandelegey Vanchig's Biography by Radnazhab Sodnomov
The Lord of the Teaching of the North
The Leading Noble Khambo Lama
All the deeds of the Merciful Teacher are countless
As the drop in the ocean here is our story
In the glorious motherland of many good wise man
Famous with the penetrating mind
In the land of Sagaan Burgasun on the bank of the cristal clear water
River Khimny Sandelegey Khambo was born
It must be finished by the time a lot of lamas come. In the morning after thinking over his dream he came to an understanding and was glad that they would have a well-behaved son who would be the support to the Teaching. And he continued reading mantras Maani and Migzem.
From the moment of his birth, Galsan Choirab was different from other babies with his ability to keep silence and not to fall down and cry. When he was 7 years old, Shireete lama of Tamchinsky dazan visited him and gave him the vows of huvrak with the words:
“He’ll be a good lama. Let him learn.” Then the old lama Danzan gave him lessons of reading and a text Etigel in which he achieved good results. But he didn’t want to continue his studying. And when his parents were asking him why he didn’t want to study, he answered he would study later.
His teacher saw that the student wasn’t very hardworking and learnt the texts only by looking through them and preferred playing to learning. So he gave him the first list of Namo Samgadi and said: start learning before the evening.
The goal of their trip was to help and to gain knowledge of these collected works.
They received oral transmission on Yum – the department of knowledge in Gandzhur consisting of 21 books) - and many other tractates from Shireete lama – the Abbot of Tsugolsky dazan Lubsan Lhundup, who gave a lot of kindness to his noble disciple.
The he added: “There we will find help with a good deal.” They went down the river. Having walked for some distance, they saw a Russian fisherman’s net with their bag full of money. They had managed to take their bag before the fisherman paid attention to them.
After that his old friend was surprised how he had known about everything. Later on there were a lot of examples of his providence.
At the age of 26 during his 1-year stay at Yangazhinsky dazan, he knew Naldzhorba Chenbo (great yogin) Galsan Sodbo from the place Khorshin senge Rinchen Vana (one of the regions of modern Inner Mongolia, China).
He was educated in the far countries, gave perfect lectures on «Gachoy» and gained wonderful siddkhi and clear vision through the hard work in different practices of meditation. This great yogin Naldzhorpa said that he was going to the north for promoting the way of Shambala.
Then Pandito Khambo Lama Choivan Dorzhe Eshizhamsuev sent Zasag Lama Dopbdan to find a good lama who would be able to receive various vang and zhenang initiations. So, Lama Dobdan went to the border where he met Khorshid Gegen and he invited him.
“The goal of our traveling will be achieved! In future there woun’t be any obstacles on our way, we will meet good followers, we will pass the initiations and let there be goodness for the Teaching and all the beings!”
Then he was invited to the monastery Choiden Dargalin, situated in Juroo (Selenginsky region of Buryatia) where on the 15th of September our teacher Galsan Choirba obtained the vows of gelong’s full initiation and received a new name – Galsan Choigy Jalsan from Sangha.
The secret teacher was the great keeper of vinaya Gelong Shireete Dandar, keeper of time – Danzan Choizin Dorzhe, the additional gelongs of Pandito Khambo were Danzan Choivan Dorzhe and Gelon Zhambal. Then they received the initiation Namkhi gozhed (opening the door of space).
From Yuroo they visited Atagan Lhundub Dechenlin, Damba Braybulin of Sartulsk, Damchoy rabzhalin of Bultumur, Sanaginsky, Tunkinsky, Barguzinsky dazans where they were giving the initiations of Buddha Odpagmed, Buddha Amitajus and Avalokitešvara many times.
And in 1842 year of Water Tiger he invited Khorshid Gegen into his monastery Gandan Darzhilin, where Gegen gave the initiation of 65 mandalas of tradition Mitra Dzogyue to 3 000 lamas and huvaraks and more than 5 000 other beliviers.
For example during the preparation to the Yamantaka initiation Gegen was saying just the evening before the teaching: «Tomorrow there will be the initiation so you must rewrite the mantras with the schedule of rites (Choga)».
Ochirdara lama was also manifesting amazing actions – for example he was climbing the mountains reaching the tops that no one could reach before, also he wasn’t feeling any cold at the frost, also he could reach the places, that normally took a 3 days trip, in only 1 day, gathering stones there and making prayers and rites.
That time there was the edict about «the death penalty to anyone crossing the border of 2 states without the special permission». Though our Teacher crossed that border twice there were no negative consequences to that.
In 1846, the year of the Fire Horse, Galsan Choirab together with his disciple Zhambal went to Tsugol monastery Dashi Choipelin, where they took part in summer fast named Yarnay and asked for different Teachings and initiations from Shiretuy-lama.
There Choirab started studying Buddhist philosophy taking the oral initiation «Ontogjen» (The Decoration of the Clear Understanding) from Sorzho lama and starting learning by heart the text Zhenzhug (The Decoration of the Clear Understanding and Entering the Middle).
After returning to his monastery, he started many traditions: to wipe the dust in all the rooms at least 3 times per day, better 7 or 9 times reciting in mind that cleaning the inner dust the inner pollution is being cleansed;
to spend all the time studying the Teaching of Buddha: recite, read, rewrite texts of Lam Rim, Lobzhon ba lavzha – exhortations, Manzishun – the tractate about medicine and astrology, Zhenzhug, all the time, except the period of the morning and evening tea, dinner and night sleep and others.
During that period he reconstructed the little temple of Kalachakra, taking part himself in painting the doors. He also was managing the laying of the sacred texts and other precious ingredients into the statues of Maitreya and 16 Arhats for the main temple Dzogchen in a very careful way.
For example in a clean place specially selected monks gathered materials before that having changed the special clothes and keeping the vegetarian diet. Its impossible to enumerate everything that he gathered for the monastery functions.
In 1847 there was a letter from Ochirdar lama Galsan Sodbo, where it was written: “Galsan Choigi Jalsan, living in the country of white tsarina being a symbol of belief and power from the far country, I am sending you thanks with the crystal pills of the Body, Speech and Mind of the Source of the Teaching Buddha Shakyamuni for the defense from the obstacles!
All of your good deeds with the happiness, should be aspired to the achievement of Enlightenment of all beings. Don’t forget this request! If you do like that you will be blessed in a short period of time. Always do as I write you!”