Rinchen Terdzö:About

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The Great Treasury of Rediscovered Teachings: A Tsadra Foundation Project

Project Directors: Eric Colombel & Marcus Perman

Website Administrator: Eric Colombel

Editor-in-Chief: Marcus Perman

Wiki Design and Maintenance: Jeremi Plazas

Digital Curator, Archivist, Researcher, and Data Enterer: Morten Ostensen

Tibetan Publications: Sean Price

Programming and File Manipulation Consultant: Phil Battos


We are deeply grateful to the preeminent artists Pema Namdol Thaye and Robert Beer for use of their artwork that adorns and beautifies the site, as well as Alex Gardner at the Treasury of Lives, Jeff Watt at Himalayan Art Resources, and all those working to further E. Gene Smith’s vision at the Buddhist Digital Resource Center for providing such a wealth of informative content.

Please see the Archivist's Introduction and the short essay on the Contents and Structure of the Rinchen Terdzö Chenmo for more details.

Following from the work done to create the detailed 18-volume Damnak Dzö Catalog, the Tsadra Foundation Research Department was able to develop a digital catalog of another of Jamgon Kongtrul's great treasuries because of the work of Sean Price and many others at Shechen Monastery, who edited and created the new 70-volume edition of the Rinchen Terdzö Chenmo. This new edition is based on all previous editions with multiple levels of editing based on all existing editions of individual texts and research of rare manuscripts done by Dakpo Tulku. The final volumes should be available by 2018. In the following years, two supplemental volumes of practice materials will also be produced. The digital catalog here was created by organizing the digital texts and using a unique application created by Phil Battos to load the unicode Tibetan, the corresponding PDFs of the pechas, and individual text and volume pages all at once into a MediaWiki-based website. Each text and colophon was then reviewed and metadata added by hand through the hard work of Morten Ostensen, supported by the wiki design work of Jeremi Plazas. Marcus Perman oversaw all aspects of the design and creation of the site and any complaints or notes of mistakes can be sent to him: Email Tsadra.

About Tsadra Foundation

Tsadra Foundation is a privately funded nonprofit trust established in New York City in 2000 in order to provide vital funding for the combined study and practice of Tibetan Buddhism in the west.


Our Vision

Tsadra Foundation envisions a flourishing community of Western scholar-practitioners who are fully trained in the traditions of Tibetan Buddhism. Grounded in wisdom and compassion, these individuals actively enrich the world through their openness and excellence.

Our Mission

Contributing to the ongoing development of wisdom and compassion in Western minds by advancing the combined study and practice of Tibetan Buddhism.

Our Policy

In seeking out candidates to support, Tsadra Foundation relies on referrals that come to us through an advisory panel of esteemed contemplatives, scholars and students. Please keep in mind that at the present time we do not accept unsolicited grant proposals; we only accept requests for scholarships as defined in the corresponding sections. For more information, please visit the Scholarships Program.

Tsadra: Our Name

The Foundation takes its name from Tsa’dra Rinchen Drak, Jamgön Kongtrul’s hermitage and principal seat in Eastern Tibet. Perched on a cliff face high above Palpung Monastery in the Dergé region of Kham, Tsa’dra is considered to be equivalent to Tsari, one of the twenty-four sacred places in India.

It was there, at his home, that Kongtrul established a traditional three-year retreat center that would be the seat of the Shangpa Kagyu tradition and in which the practice traditions of Shangpa, Kalachakra, and Dzogchen were transmitted. Many volumes of Kongtrul’s Five Treasuries, which comprise the theory and practice of all the main lineages of Tibetan Buddhism, were composed at Tsa’dra.

Our Inspiration

Jamgön Kongtrul was a remarkable figure in nineteenth century Tibet. Widely respected for his accomplishments in contemplation and scholarship, he spent much of his life in retreat while composing authoritative treatises. His life and activity embody perfectly the values of Tsadra Foundation, and as such are our primary source of inspiration.

Fully integrating the two facets of Buddhist teachings, Kongtrul worked continuously for the benefit of others through religious, social, and diplomatic efforts. A tireless advocate of the nonsectarian movement, he counteracted the religious fragmentation of his time by espousing respect for all authentic traditions. With this same belief at its core, Tsadra Foundation as an institution is not attached to a single tradition, nor does it adhere to or represent any single teacher’s activity. The directors of Tsadra Foundation acknowledge an infinite debt of gratitude to another great Tibetan master considered to be Kongtrul’s activity incarnation, Khyabje Kalu Rinpoché. With his profound wisdom, endless patience, and irrepressible humor, Kalu Rinpoché opened our hearts and minds. Most significantly, he founded the first three-year retreat center in the West, trusting students with the full and uncompromised transmission of the Buddhist teachings.