The meaning of Khachodling

“The word ‘Khachodling’ holds a deep spiritual meaning for me. Literally translated it means ‘land of the blissful dakinis’ and simply put, it is the boundless, uncontrived heart essence of wisdom that moves and flows as limitless, inconceivable compassion.

This Dakini or divine feminine principle pervades Vajrayana — the tantric practice of Himalayan yogis and yoginis. It seems simple, yet it cannot be conceptualised. One has to shed all reference points of ego and identity in order to authentically embrace the purity of this truth. The Dakini is dance — movement — subtle and mystifying. She is not something to be achieved or known, she is direct experience and cannot be bound.”


This deep meaning can inspire and guide us.

Gegan Khyentse

It was the great Master, Gegan Khyentse, who gave the name “Khachodling” to the life vision and work of Khandro Thrinlay Chodon, who is the daughter of his Guru and lineage holder of the ancient tradition.

Gegen Khyentse recognised her bodhisattva qualities while she was young and actively encouraged her, as a woman to manifest in this life. This was unusual for the time.

Gegan Khyentse displayed deep foresight in choosing the name of Khachodling. It’s qualities of strength, as well as flow and softness, are very needed in modern times.

When you envision dharma work it has to be as vast as the sky, for we have lifetimes to complete it.

Gegan Khyentse Rinpoche

Khachodling differs from purely humanitarian organisations in that its motivation springs from the heart of the Vajrayana Buddhist meaning of inspiring wisdom and generating compassion. These ancient wisdoms accept impermanence and interdependence; that life is a constant magical flow, like a dream in which we all live. From these timeless wisdoms a series of humanitarian projects arise that can allow us to make our lives meaningful and create positive imprints. Khachodling is a vision as vast as the sky and action as local as working side by side.

From the cities of the West to the mountains of the Himalayas, men and women, adults, children and youth, lay people, monks and nuns are joining together in social action projects and spiritual training under the guidance of Khandro Thrinlay Chodon.

Khachodling, this vision – my life’s work, is an offering to the wisdom of my great Masters.
It is a goal-less journey. I am not quite sure from where it came and where it is leading.
But I do know that myself, and Khachodling have always been blessed by my precious Masters, and these blessings will always continue.

Khandro Thrinlay Chodon

The following, written by Khandro Thrinlay Chodon in 1992, is a beautiful early expression of her life intention.

What makes you happy? I encourage each of us to take a close look at all the things in our lives we have tried to make us happy and then answer this question deeply and truthfully.

I ask this question over and over to myself because in America, where I lived and earned a Masters Degree in Psychology, I spent lots of time observing friends and families who, despite their vast physical comforts, had not found a real and lasting happiness that abides within, whatever the circumstances. This shocked me for I grew up in the East – in the northern Himalayas to be exact, where there was none of the material grandeur of the West – no huge houses, luxurious cars or endless electronic entertainment, yet we all felt very rich because we were very happy!

What we did have was the ancient wisdom of the Buddha’s teachings and truth, and it is this sacred and treasured “hand-me-down” of my family that is the surest prescription I know for easing the sorrows and ills of everyday life. Unlike a plastic charge card, the teachings are a true source of lasting joy and these can be with you everywhere and always.

Now, I want to share this wealth of the East with the West. At the same time I want to ask the West to share its skills and resources with those in the East, who are also willing to commit to preserving this precious lineage – a worldwide interchange to grow in spiritual happiness and preserve the precious dharma.

As the great granddaughter of a peerless spiritual luminary, the daughter of a renowned meditation master and the widow of a royal Rinpoche, I pray that my life’s contribution will always be to help others. I watched my late mother, an accomplished master in her own right, serve as a sort of secret teacher to my father’s students, always giving quietly in the background, never on the throne. Inspired by her unselfish motivation, homespun methods and ceaseless caring, I hope to be of similar special benefit.

May all, and this includes nuns, laywomen, children, people of the east and west, have equal opportunity to enjoy the rich, warm embrace of my precious heritage.


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