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Panchen Sönam Tsemo :



Ngawang Sönam Geley (Panchen Söman Tsemo) was born in the earth horse year (52nd) of the tenth rabjam (1567-1626) in Reboo near Yur-ka. His father's name was Saype and mother was Sönam Drolma. He was reciting many mantras at an early age and he also remember his previous life as Panchen Wang-po.



The leader of Yur-ka, a highly realised student of Panchen Wang-po recalled his lama to mind "as a son returning to the family," and invited Ngawang Sönam Geley. Inviting him was like a seed growing into a beautiful flower.



At three years of age he went to Chomoling where Yur-je Norbu resided as king. Dharma king Choje Jerkam Serpa Penyer Gyatso who was a monk, cut Sönam Geley's hair and offered it to the Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha.



In Lhasa during Monlan, a throne was prepared for him where he taught Guru Yoga completely, surprising everyone. Near Gaden at Tashi Jong he began his studies and at this time took his getsul vows from Penjur Lung-ju.



During this time the Third Dalai Lama passed away and was reborn in Mongolia. This Fourth Dalai Lama came to Lhasa and Sönam Geley offered a welcoming (pay-sur) to him. This happened during fire sheep year when he was fourteen. Yonten Gyatso, the Fourth Dalai Lama, met the high Lama Nungu Tulku, a debating master in philosophy and this made him very happy.



When the Fourth Dalai Lama turned eighteen, he went to Drepung Phoden-to and there received vows and the empowerment of "Rosary of Vajra Five Deities" from Panchen Chokyi Gyeltsen. When he turned twenty he took gelong vows from Panchen Lobsang Chokyi Gyeltsen. In the same year he went to Tashilhumpo where he studied with Panchen Chokyi Gyeltsen. He excelled in wisdom and explained philosophy in the monastery.

Panchen Chokyi Gyeltsen was very happy about this and offered him a high position and praises.



For some time he went to western Tibet on a pilgrimage, and on returning to central Tibet he went to a very old Sakya monastery called Kango Choda which a certain king patronized. Being old, it contained many special books and statues. He also went to Jambuling, Ser-ton, Yur-ka.



Yonten Gyatso, the Fourth Dalai Lama and Sönam Geley went to Chomoling, near Lhasa. They studied Sutra and Tantra together as well as being each other's teacher. At this time many Mongolian Pilgrims came to Lhasa and made offering to Sönam Geley and requested teaching. Sönam Geley and Panchen Chokyi Gyeltsen gave gelong vows to the Fourth Dalai Lama.



The famous Tonkar Tulku of Amdo came to Lhasa and requested teachings of Sutra and Tantra. Sönam Geley presided over New Year celebrations as the Monlam Unzin.



When he was twenty-two, Sönam Geley died of smallpox. At cremation his body produced many relics which were put inside an Amitayus statue.