Jebtsundamba

Jebtsundamba Khutughtu (Javzandamba Hutagt in Khalkha Mongolian; from Tibetan: rje btsun dam pa, lit. Holy Venerable Lord), also known as Boghda Gegeen (Bogd Gegeen), was the title for the top-ranking lama in Mongolia.

The first Jebtsundamba, also known as Zanabazar (1635-1723), was identified as the reincarnation of Taranatha of the Jonang school of Tibetan Buddhism. He acceded the head of the Khalkha Mongols. Jebtsundamba became the spiritual leader of northern Mongolia.

The first two Jebtsundambas were direct descendants of Chinggis Khan. On the intervation of the Qing Dynasty, which was afraid of Mongol reunification, the rest were chosen from the Tibetans.

When northern Mongolia began the independence movement, the eighth Jebtsundamba (1869-1924) assumed the Emperor of Mongolia, called Boghda Khaan (Bogd Khaan). He was the head of the state until his death in 1924. The communist government declared the end of his reincarnation.

In 1991 the Dalai Lama made public the ninth Jebtsundamba. He was identified by the Tibetan government around 1939 and lived in Dharamsala.


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