Founder

Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso Rinpoche is the founder and Spiritual Director of the New Kadampa Tradition, an international union of Kadampa Buddhist Centers and branches worldwide.

Geshe Kelsang “Geshe-la” as he is affectionately called by his students, is primarily responsible for the worldwide revival of Kadampa Buddhism in our time.

Born in Tibet in 1931 and ordained a Buddhist monk at the age of eight after which he studied extensively in the great monastic universities of Tibet and earned the title ‘Geshe’, which literally means ‘spiritual friend’, under the guidance of Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche, his Spiritual Guide. After leaving Tibet in 1959, he spent the next eighteen years in meditation retreats in the Himalayan region and northern India.

In 1977, he accepted an invitation from Manjushri Buddhist Centre in Ulverston, England, to take up residence as their Spiritual Teacher, and in 1982 he became a naturalized British citizen. Since arriving in the UK, Geshe Kelsang has worked tirelessly to establish Buddhadharma in the West and to fulfill the wishes of those who wish to practice Buddhism.

During these years he has given extensive teachings on major Mahayana Buddhist scriptures. These teachings, which are exceptionally clear and easy to understand, have been published as a number of highly acclaimed books that bridge perfectly the ancient wisdom of Buddhism and contemporary life.

Geshe Kelsang currently divides his time between Europe and North America, where he continues to teach and guide thousands of disciples.

He has established three unique study programs and over 1000 Centers and branches around the world, trained qualified teachers and a flourishing ordained community, and created a project to build Buddhist temples in every major city in the world.

In his teachings Geshe Kelsang emphasizes the importance of meditation and how to apply it in daily life, the need to be truly happy, and how to cultivate a good heart to help others — and he demonstrates these qualities perfectly in his own life.

This remarkable teacher inspires so many people from so many different countries because he teaches from example.

He is a humble Buddhist monk dedicated to helping people throughout the world find true happiness in their hearts.