His Holiness the 33rd Kyabje Gyalwa Menri Trizin, 88, died on September 14 in India’s Himachal Pradesh, according to the Yungdrung Bon Monastic Center Society. He has returned to India in August after receiving medical treatment in the United States.

Menri Trizin Rinpoche was the spiritual leader of the Bon, a Tibetan Buddhist tradition that combines elements of indigenous Tibetan religions that predate Buddhism.

Menri Trizin was born in the village of Kyongtsang in eastern Tibet in 1929 and started living at the Phuntsog Dargye Ling monastery when he was 8 years old. He received his geshe [advanced] degree at age 25, and studied at several Bon monasteries before fleeing to Nepal in 1959.

 He taught Buddhism in England and Norway before being chosen as the 33rd abbot of Menri in 1966. His duties included reestablishing the Menri Monastery in India (the original monastery was founded in Tibet in 1405 and destroyed during China’s Cultural Revolution).

 You can read more about the 33rd Kyabje Gyalwa Menri Trizin’s life here, and the Bon tradition here.

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