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Akong Rinpoche  1939-2013

Akong Rinpoche


Founder of Tara Rokpa Therapy


Akong Tulku Rinpoche is the person who provided the original inspiration for the development of Tara Rokpa Therapy. He was born and received his education as a Buddhist meditation master and doctor of traditional Tibetan Medicine in Eastern Tibet. By the age of 20 he had taken full charge of the spiritual, medical and practical needs of the monks, nuns and laypeople under his care. Before leaving Tibet he was very involved with caring for the sick and dying both as a physician and spiritual guide. When the Chinese took over this area in 1959, he sought refuge initially in India and settled in Britain in the mid 1960s. He co-founded the Samye Ling Tibetan Centre with Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche in the borders of Scotland in 1967.

The inspiration of Akong Rinpoche has been crucial to this project. His knowledge and understanding have led to innovative approaches which address the disconnectedness which is found in so many facets of contemporary life and culture and which is a contributing cause for people seeking the help of psychotherapists. Akong Rinpoche's therapeutic approach has been drawn largely from the principles of Traditional Tibetan medicine which is an intrinsically holistic system which has never posited a split of  mind from body . Akong Rinpoche continued his active engagement in the development of TRT until his death in October, 2013.

akong rinpoche Key to the TRT method which Akong Rinpoche introduced as crucial to this psychotherapy is the willingness to 'face the situation', whatever that may be. By not always trying to improve upon reality as one finds it, it is possible to see all sides of the situation including one's own hidden strengths. Such 'here and now' ideas fit easily with the Western Systemic/Social and Personal Constructivist approaches which invite us to take responsibility for the way we construct our world together (Maturana and Varela).

Apart from his role as a spiritual leader and his contribution to psychotherapy and Tibetan Medicine, he was an outstanding humanitarian and co-founder of ROKPA INTERNATIONAL www.rokpa.org. His interests and activities included the following:

1. Restoring Environments through the application of sound ecological principles, such as re-introducing organic farming methods in the third world and preservation of all forms of life including endangered species of plants and animals.

2. Preserving Traditional Cultures throughout the world. He was personally engaged in such preservation of culture in Tibet, Nepal and Southern Africa.

3. Furthering Education In Tibet through founding and supporting schools focused on education of orphans and very poor children, especially in remote and nomadic areas. Establishing Tibetan medium curricula and teaching materials in areas where the written language had nearly died out.

4. Preservation of Tibetan Medicine, its herbs and pharmocognosy as well as its textual and practise traditions.

5. Feeding Hungry People through soup kitchens/greenhouse projects in Europe, Asia and Africa.

He was a British citizen and  raised a family in Dumfries, Scotland.