The Second Trijang, Lobzang Tsultrim Pelden b.1839?/1836 - d.1900
Name Variants: Ganden Trichen 85 Lobzang Tsultrim Pelden; Ganden Tripa 85 Lobzang Tsultrim Pelden; Tolungpa Lobzang Tsultrim Pelden ; Tsultrim Pelden
The Eighty-fifth Ganden Tripa, Lobzang Tsultrim Pelden (dga' ldan khri pa 85 blo bzang tshul khrims dpal ldan) was born in Tolung Ragkor (stod lung rag skor) in 1839, the earth-pig year of the fourteenth sexagenary cycle. An alternate date of his birth is 1836, the fire-monkey year. The names of his parents are not known, but they were said to be descended from the Shangpa Kagyu lama Wonton Kergangpa (dbon ston skyer sgang pa, 1154-1217). He was identified as the reincarnation of the Sixty-ninth Ganden Tripa, Trichen Jangchub Chopel Pelzangpo (dga' lhan khri pa 69 khri chen byang chub chos 'phel dpal bzang po, 1756-1838), and given the title of the Second Trijang.
At a young age Lobzang Tsultrim Pelden matriculated in the Dokang House of Shartse College of the Ganden Monastic University (dga' ldan shar rtse grwa tshang gi rdo khang khang tshan) where he received his basic education and training in monastic life, and then studied the texts of Abhisamayālaṃkāra, Madhyamaka, Abhidharmakośa, Pramāṇavārttika, and Vinaya, the five major subjects of the Geluk monastic curriculum. Completing his education, he successfully stood in the traditional examination of Geshe Lharampa (dge bshes lha ram pa) in the Lhasa Monlam Chenmo, the highest degree in Geluk Tradition.
Lobzang Tsultrim Pelden then enrolled in Gyuto College in Lhasa for formal education in the four sections of tantra (rgyud sde bzhi) according to the Geluk tradition, together with relating rituals, and earned the title of Ngakrampa (sngags rams pa), Master of Tantra.
He then occupied the posts required for ascent to the Golden Throne, including abbot of the college, prior to being made Shartse Choje (shar rtse chos rje) at Ganden Shartse Monastery, one of two positions from which one ascended to the Golden Throne.
Traditionally, after completing one's education in tantra at Gyuto, an aspirant to the Golden Throne must serve as disciplinarian (dge bskos) for four months, chant leader (bla ma dbu mdzad), the head of education, for three years, and finally abbot for three years. Some time after his retirement from the abbacy he is appointed Shartse Choje at Ganden Shartse and serves the post for fourteen years, after which he ascends to the Golden Throne. Those Tripa who study at Gyume follow a similar trajectory, becoming Jangtse Choje (byang rtse chos rje) at Ganden Jangtse; the Shartse and Jangtse Chojes alternate their occupancy of the Golden Throne.
In 1896, the fire-monkey year of the fifteenth sexagenary cycle, Lobzang Tsultrim Pelden ascended from the seat of Sharpa Choje to the Golden Throne as the Eighty-fifth Ganden Tripa. He served for five years, until 1900, during which he performed the customary duties of a Tripa: giving teachings and leading important religious performances and ceremonies including the Lhasa Monlam Festival held in the first month of every Tibetan year.
Lobzang Tsultrim Pelden passed into nirvana while in office, in 1900, on the twenty-fifth day of the fourth month of iron-mouse year in the fifteenth sexagenary cycle. While returning to his official residence Tritogkhang (khri thog khang) in Lhasa from the circumambulation route at Gandenling (dga' ldan gling) he sat on a chair facing west; looking up in the sky he suddenly exclaimed "Ha! Ha! Ganden! Ganden!" and passed away. He was succeeded on the Golden Throne by Meru Lobzang Gyeltsen (khri chen rme ru blo bzang rgyal mtshan).
Lobzang Tsultrim Pelden's cremation was done in accordance with the traditional rites and rituals. His heart, tongue, and eyeballs are said to have been discovered unburned and intact in the ashes and were later taken to Chadreng (cha phreng) in Kham by his devotees.
His reincarnation, the Third Trijang, was identified in Lobzang Yeshe Tendzin Gyatso (blo bzang ye shes bstan 'dzin rgya mtsho) born in Gungtang (gung thang) in the winter of 1901, the iron-ox year of the fifteenth sexagenary cycle.
Grags pa 'byung gnas and Rgyal ba blo bzang mkhas grub. 1992. Gangs can mkhas grub rim byon ming mdzod. Lanzhou: Kan su'u mi rigs dpe skrun khang, pp. 113-114.
Grong khyer lha sa srid gros lo rgyus rig gnas dpyad yig rgyu cha rtsom 'bri au yon lhan khang. 1994. Dga' ldan dgon pa dang brag yer pa'i lo rgyus, grong khyer lha sa'i lo rgyus rig gnas deb 02. Lhasa: Bod ljongs shin hwa par 'debs bzo grwa khang, p. 78.
Khetsun Sangpo. 1973. Biographical Dictionary of Tibet and Tibetan Buddhism. Dharamsala: LTWA, Vol. 6, pp. 211.
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- Historical Period