5th Dalai Lama - Birth, Family and Childhood

Birth, Family and Childhood

Lobsang Gyatso (birthname: Künga Nyingpo) was born in 1617 in Tsang to a family with traditional ties to the Sakya and Nyingma orders. His famous noble Zahor family had held their seat since the 14th century at Taktsé Castle, the former stronghold of the Tibetan kings. His father, Dudul Rabten, was arrested in 1618 for being involved in a plot against the royal government of the king of Tsang at almost the same time the Gelug had secretly chosen his son as the reincarnation of Yonten Gyatso, the 4th Dalai Lama. According to the 14th Dalai Lama it was Sonam Choephel, the chief attendant of the Fourth Dalai Lama, who discovered the incarnation. Dudul Rabten escaped and tried to reach eastern Tibet but was rearrested and never saw his son again before he died in 1626 at Samdruptse, the king of Tsang's castle in Shigatse. Lobsang Gyatso's family were all ordered to live at the court at Samdruptse, but his mother, fearing the king, returned with her son to her family's home, Narkatse castle, in Yardrog.

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