It’s 1972. An old colonial-style house sits high on a ridge amid pine, oak, and rhododendron forests, beneath the beautiful snow-capped peaks of the Dhauladar Range. It is about to be acquired, along with four acres of land in the foothills of the Himalayas, near Dharamsala in northern
India, by Lama Zopa Rinpoche and some of his students.
In the 1960s it had been the temporary residence of Trijang Rinpoche, the junior tutor of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. At that time, His Holiness lived just a couple of hundred meters down the mountain track, and his senior tutor, Ling Rinpoche, lived on the other side of the hill. Geshe Rabten’s residence was also nearby. In the surrounding mountains yogis were (and still are) living in caves.
The property is given the name Tushita, “the Place of Joy,” the pure land of Maitreya Buddha. As soon as initial repair work is done and some accommodation built, it becomes one of the first FPMT centers, a facility for solitary and group retreats. Anja Rydén delved into the center’s archives and interviewed some people, and here’s the Tushita story…fpmt history, tushita meditation centre