Birth of the Seventeenth Gyalwa Karmapa

His Holiness the Seventeenth Gyalwa Karmapa was born on the eighth day of the fifth Tibetan month in the year of the Wood Ox (June 26, 1985 using the Western calendar) in Lhathok, located in the nomad community of Bakor in eastern Tibet. His father is Karma Dondrup and his mother, Loga. Just before the sun rose, His Holiness was born without any difficulty. In the afternoon of the third day after his birth, the wide-ranging sound of a conch shell resonated for about one hour. For another half hour, the tones of various musical instruments were clearly heard by all the people in this nomad community. The resounding of the conch shell in the sky and on the earth was a wondrous event.

Parents of His Holiness the Seventeenth Karmapa

Before the Karmapa was born, a beautiful bird never seen before landed on the roof of the family's tent and sang a lovely song. Another time, a rainbow appeared over the tent. In this way, many wonderful signs appeared which were directly perceived, and which led all the people of the area to believe that this child was a very special one.

When His Holiness was four years old, Amdo Palden from Kalek Monastery invited him to go there and subsequently, he began his studies. The Karmapa possessed great qualities within his physical form, great compassion within his mind, and the knowledge of past and future time. For example, one day when he was playing with his youngest sister, he said: "Father's car has fallen down." When his sister rebuked him, saying "Don't talk like that," His Holiness answered, "Everything is all right." When the Karmapa's father came back, they found out that the Karmapa had known exactly what happened: his father's vehicle had fallen off the road, but no one was hurt.

The valley in eastern Tibet where the Seventeenth Karmapa was born