About Gebchak

Gebchak Gonpa at 14,000 ft.

My prayer is to preserve and protect this female lineage of Gebchak Gonpa. My request to people throughout the world is to pray for the Gebchak lineage to be entirely preserved in the future.
– Wangdrak Rinpoche.

In the remote mountain highlands of Nangchen (ནང་ཆེན།) in Eastern Tibet, there exists an extraordinary lineage of female spiritual practitioners at Gebchak Gonpa – one of the largest nunneries in Tibet and heart of a renowned meditation tradition unique to women.


Gebchak Gonpa is the mother nunnery of dozens of branch nunneries scattered throughout the region. It stands strong as a model community of more than 350 yogini-nuns exemplifying kindness, peace and joyful adherence to spiritual practice for the benefit of the entire world.

Many great Buddhist masters have praise Gebchak Gonpa as being unrivalled in its spiritual training. Its nuns are famed for their accomplishments in profound yogas and meditation, while their compassion and dedication to the Dharma is remarkable.

One great master, Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche, praised the accomplishments of the Gebchak yogini-nuns. His memoirs, Blazing Splendor, has a chapter dedicated to them. Read excerpts.


Statue resembling the first Tsangyang Gyamtso Rinpoche

Men and women have an equal right to enlightenment, but for women that right often went unrecognized. The first Tsoknyi Rinpoche instructed his heart disciple, Tsangyang Gyamtso, to build nunneries so that women would have the opportunity to devote their entire lives to spiritual practice.

Tsogyal, Tsoknyi, Pema Drimey and Wangdrak Rinpoches with Gebchak nuns

Tsoknyi Rinpoche and Tsangyang Gyamtso were vanguards in Tibetan culture for envisioning a community where women could gain full confidence in attaining enlightenment. Tsangyang Gyamtso founded Gebchak Gonpa in 1892, adapting practices in the Ratna Lingpa tradition to specifically suit the female mind-body experience.

At that time Gebchak Gonpa was the only nunnery of its kind. Women from every school of Tibetan Buddhism traveled from all over Tibet to be admitted. At its peak the nunnery grew to over 700 nuns. To this day Gebchak Gonpa retains its true non-sectarian character, where the nuns pray with devotion to masters of all lineages.

Read more about the Gebchak feminine tradition.