Tenzin Khenrab Gelek Palsangpo, the 11th Gyalwang Drukpa, was born in Lhasa and was recognized by many of his gurus according to their predictions. He took the exalted yogi Tripon Rinpoche, Trulshik Pema Chogyal, as his root guru. Under the guru’s direction, Tenzin Khyenrab Gelek Palsangpo achieved great understanding and was authoritative in both the theory and practice of the sutras and tantras, and his wisdom blossomed immeasurably. He received numerous Dzogchen instructions and empowerments from Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche, Chokyi Lodro, and spent most of his life in strict retreat practicing meditation according to both the Nyingma and Sarma tantric traditions of Tibet.
During the Cultural Revolution in 1959, Tenzin Khenrab Gelek Palsangpo along with Thuksey Rinpoche, Apho Rinpoche and followers, left for India. They were only able to take with them some very valuable and sacred items from the monastery. Unfortunately, this enlightened master died soon thereafter in a refugee camp at Buxa, West Bengal, near the Bhutanese border in the year 1960, at age 29. Before passing away, he sat for days absorbed in deep meditation without eating, drinking or sleeping. He then promised Thuksey Rinpoche, that he would reappear in this world and continue serving the Dharma and sentient beings.
“I will definitely take rebirth in India” Tenzin Khenrab Gelek Palsangpo said before passing away. Those were his last words.