Tulku“Tulku”, by Gesar Mukpo, is a documentary about his own inner journey and that of other young western Tulkus, who have all been recognized, when children, as reincarnations of Tibetan Lamas. The recognition of western children as Tulkus first started in the mid-1970s and the film explains how this practice has created stability politically and spiritually in Tibetan society for 800 years but has not transferred easily into western culture. For most of these young men there has been a conflict between the modern western culture that they have been raised in and the traditional Tibetan culture of their past lives.
Gesar was the son of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche and then was recognized as the reincarnation of Trungpa’s teacher Jamgon Kongtrul. Gesar has not had a closed monastic upbringing, as, with a British mother, has lived all over the world, in countries as America, England or India. He is a filmmaker and has a child and, obviously, has experienced the ups and downs of married life. In other words, Gesar leads a very normal western life.
At the same time, he is seen by many Tibetan Buddhists as someone who, as a Tulku, is supposed to be revered and special. He examines not only his own life and what it means for him to have the title of Tulku, but also travels to India and Nepal, as well as the USA and Canada to meet other western born Tulkus, who are similarly struggling to make sense of a destiny that has been thrust upon them.

The Documentary “Tulku”