hen Rinpoche Geshe Lobsang Tharchin was born in Lhasa, Tibet in 1921 and entered Sera Monastery there at an early age. He proceeded through the rigorous 25 year program of monastic studies under the guidance of Pabongka Rinpoche and Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche. Upon successful completion of public examination by the best scholars of the day, Rinpoche was awarded the highest degree of Hlarampa Geshe (Doctor of Theology) with honors, and is one of the last living Hlarampa Geshes educated in Tibet. He proved to be the best debater of his graduation year in all of Tibet, making him the "First among the First."
Khen Rinpoche then entered Gyu Mey Tantric College, where he completed its course of advanced tantric studies and attained a high-ranking administrative position. In 1959 Rinpoche escaped from Tibet into India along with His Holiness the Dalai Lama. He became actively involved in resettlement, and compiled a series of textbooks used in the Tibetan refugee schools.
Khen Rinpoche came to the United States in 1972 and became Abbot of Rashi Gempil Ling Temple in New Jersey. After going to South India in 1991 and serving as Abbot of Sera Mey monastery for some time, he returned to the United States. Khen Rinpoche Geshe Lobsang Tharchin was a lifetime director and an abbot emeritus of Sera Mey monastery, as well as founder of the Mahayana Sutra and Tantra Center, which has branches in New Jersey and Washington, DC. He was also the spiritual director of the Asian Classics Institute, the Asian Classics Input Project, Diamond Abbey, and Godstow. Khen Rinpoche passed on from this life on Je Tsongkapa Day, Dec. 7, 2004.