Saturday, October 9, 2021

Published October 09, 2021 by with 0 comment


This is a synopsis to recall the memory of my late uncle, a rare talent to be lost forever. Some people will never pass away in spirit, memory and magnificence. He is my Aku, younger brother of my dad.

Like a comet streaking through the sky and vanishing into the expanse of the limitless night sky, Khaling Karma alias Tashi Tshering, passed away on the afternoon of 8th October 2021, after years of convalescent recovery from illness he has been fighting to regain strength. This left a massive hole in the hearts of many people who know him well. 

He was my vault of wisdom, skill and talents only few can have learnt to master. He was a encyclopedia and an engineer that needed no schooling to become master in how life can be lived to the fullest. 

Even at seventy, he was one of the versatile and farsighted spiritualist and a philosopher. Aku was a thinker without limits, a humorous man with a heart of gold. He was the most versatile craftsman, a creative designer, an engineer at everything, a man of focus and purpose, a resourceful mechanic of ideas.

His devotion to Chod practice was relentlessly investigative, drawing deep into the profound essence of Dzogchen teachings. His Root Teachers included luminaries like Dudjom Rinpoche and Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche and other great Lamas of his time. Jamyang Khentse Rinpoche has been his primary Guru, an inspiration for his practices and life.

During his last days, Aku had been lively to family and visitors, even dancing during Thruebaab. He began practicing Phowa and Luibjinn intensively in the last few weeks every night. At one time he said, “death is imminent for everyone. Mine is nearby and I am ready to leave.” This conviction is a sign of acceptance and fulfillment.

Aku was my first guide and a teacher to initiate me into Chod teachings. A night after my marriage fell apart irreparably, Aku walked me to Thimphu the following morning to buy drum,bell and Chod prayer book. Later that day, I was taught the tune, given directions with highlights on the pages of the book and even gave me prayer recorded in a cassette. That was in May 2003. 

Thereafter, apart from getting taught and inspired in many profound teachings, his experiential learning and histories, Aku became one of the guides to cut through my ignorance and learning. The other two teachers were father, a lifelong Chod hermit and my Aku Tshampa, a Throma Lama at Paro.

Aku is also known as ‘Samsara’ to many students of the ninety’s in Khaling High School, for teaching life and philosophy of samsaric world. When I young I was told Aku was known as Kuenphen Karma, and that he was a Royal Photographer at one point of time.

He was one of the first graduates from NIE Samtse, a teacher from his early age. And he lived as a teacher, teaching people through his ways and words that are inexplicably beyond being an intellectual.

You will be missed but you will never be gone.


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