Geshe Pema Dorjee was born into a nomadic family in Tibet. When
he was a young boy, they escaped from the invading Chinese by walking over
the Himalayas in winter at night.
After moving to Dharamsala, India he attained an undergraduate
degree and two Masters degrees in Buddhist Philosophy. For the next 16
years, he dedicated himself to the Tibetan Children’s Village School where
he began as a teacher and then became Principal and finally the Director of
the school. As a result of further studies in Buddhist philosophy, he was
awarded the Geshe degree, the equivalent of a Ph.D.
He was appointed Principal of the Tibetan Teachers Training Center
and then the first Principal of the Institute of Buddhist Dialectics, now called
the College for Higher Tibetan Studies.
In 2001, the Dalai Lama asked him to revive an important part of
Tibetan Buddhism, the Bodong tradition, that was falling into obsolescence.
Accordingly, Pema Dorjee founded and became Director of the Bodong
Research and Publication Center in Dharamsala where he collected,
translated, and published the writings of the Bodong tradition. In addition,
he established and still runs a Bodong monastery in Kathmandu where
monks are trained in the Bodong tradition
The Tibetan government-in-exile has honored Geshe Pema Dorjee by
asking him to undertake various tasks. The Cabinet appointed him to the
Higher Level Textbook Review Committee. His Holiness appointed him as a
member of the Public Service Commission. The Department of Health
appointed him as spiritual counselor to former political prisoners who had
Geshe Pema Dorjee organizes, directs, and raises funds for his
numerous charitable projects. These include establishing schools,
orphanages, and a nunnery; creating a safe house for street children; helping
young people in Tibetan refugee camps; introducing toilets, safe water, and
modern stoves to Himalayan villages
); and providing medical
care to the sick and injured in these remote villages.
Since 1997, he has lectured and taught in countries around the world
including Sweden, England, Switzerland, Belgium, Germany, Finland,
Norway, France, Estonia, and Israel. Each year since 2009, Geshe Pema
Dorjee has lectured and taught courses in the United States, including New
York, Cambridge, Miami, Minneapolis, Portland, and San Francisco.