This is a very moving film from 1991 about the rediscovery of the reincarnation of one very famous Rinpoche, who had passed away four years earlier.
Khensur Rinpoche was a well-loved lama who headed the Drepung monastery in Tibet, before the country was overrun by the Chinese. He then moved to India and restarted the monastery in southern India.
It was there that he passed away in 1987, and since then his disciples have been looking for signs of his reincarnation. The signs are good, a young boy has been discovered in Tibet, who could very well be the reincarnated lama, but there have been riots in Lhasa and it is difficult to get into the country and follow up the leads.
Eventually travel restrictions are loosened and three months later one of Rinpoche’s disciples emerges with the boy into Nepal. How exactly he got there is not revealed, but presumably they were both smuggled out of the country through its porous borders.
Not they must start a new life of training and monastic discipline so the boy will grow up and be able to take on the mantle of his previous self, and that is a long and arduous journey.
Next week I will show a film made some 16 years later in 2007, in which we see the boy, then around 20, and the progress he has made.
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