The general history of the previous and present Adzom Gyalse Rinpoche can be divided under two headings: the meaning of his name and a brief supplication showing his successive tulkus.
Firstly, a legend explains the origin of the Adzom name: the family, apparently of Mongolian ancestry, traced its lineage back to Tashi Bum, a minister of Sonam Norbu, the ruler of Yonru in Amdo, during the era of the Third Dalai Lama Sonam Gyatso (1543-1588). A member of the family, Lama Sanggye Tashi, had five brothers all called Tashi; the five Tashis were each identified as incarnated lamas. A servant named Khage said of this, “A tser-mo! (Wonderful!) All five boys are Tashi and all of them are lamas!” He further said, “Adzompo” (What a fortunate occurrence!). Following that, a newly established residence was called “Adzom Labrang” and its lamas and successors were known by the title of “Adzom“.
Gyalse means, “Son of the Victorious Ones (Bodhisattva)” or “Son of the King (Prince)”; and Gyurme Dorje, “Unchanging Vajra”, this last part of the name was given due to he was recognized, in his previous life, as an emanation of the Tertön Terdag Lingpa Gyurme Dorje by Adzom Drukpa Pawo Dorje (Tertön and realized Master, as well as his father) and Jamgön Kongtrul the Great.
In this present life, HH Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche added within his name the word Thegchok, which means “Supreme Vehicle”. Thus, now he is known as Adzom Gyalse Gyurme Thegchok Dorje, “Bodhisattva Unchanging Supreme Vajra Vehicle of Adzom”.
Secondly, through some verses of a brief supplication written by one of his disciples, it shows the spiritual background of Adzom Gyalse Rinpoche
“Though primordially enlightened within unchanging dharmakaya, through the inconceivable display of the vajra of timeless awareness you reveal the vast array of magical illusion of the victorious ones and their heirs in countless pure realms. To you I pray.[…]
[…] You were Denpak in the presence of Tupka Zhonnu, and Ananda, the attendant of our sublime Teacher, the Lord of Sages. You codified all of their vast and profound teachings and so caused the teachings to flourish. To you I pray.
You became Rahula, the exalted one of the warrior class, protecting the teachings until the advent of the fifth buddha of our age, and Indrabhuti in the land of Oddiyana, as well as the Buddhist king Chandrabhadra. To you I pray.
You were Garab Dorje, teacher of Dzogchen, Shri Simha, who received the transmission of the three categories and nine expanses, Gartong Tsen, minister to kings and emanation of the protective deities in the Land of Snows, and Lochen Namnang Sung (Vairotsana). To you I pray.
You were Palgyi Dorje, who vanquished the hordes of Yisup, Shakya Jungne, Rongzom Chokyi Zangpo, and the moonlike heart son of Mila Zhepa Dorje, the truly exalted Rechungpa. To you I pray.
You were the Omniscient King of the Dharma, Longchenpa, the powerful lord of siddhas Tangtong Gyalpo, Prajnarasmi, Shantapuri, and Terchen Drodul Lingpa. To you I pray.
You were Kunzang Sherab, who illuminated the Nyingma teachings, and the guardian of the spiritual treasures of the glorious Sakya tradition, the vajra holder Khonton Wangdii Nyingpo, and other great masters. To you I pray.
Spiritual mentors who teach the sutras and tantras and other victorious ones are identical in the basic space of timeless awareness, but are still immeasurable in their manifestations as one or many. You have appeared as numerous such protectors of the teachings and beings. To you I pray.
In this present lifetime, you radiate the major and minor marks of perfection, the scion of a family line of siddhas. You blossom with the holy qualities that are your very nature. Since your youth, you have mounted the throne of the supreme spiritual approach and upheld your role as a regent of siddhas. To you I pray. […]
[…] Such is the prayer composed by a monk named Yeshe.”
For more details about the biographies and lineage of the previous and present Adzom Gyalse Rinpoche, please visit the respective links at the menu.
Nyoshul Khenpo Jamyang Dorje. Marvelous Garland of Rare Gems – Biographies of Masters of Awareness in the Dzogchen Lineage. Padma Publishing, 2005. pag. 451 -453