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Gampopa (1079-1153), also known as Dakpo Rinpoche, was born Sonam Rinchen in Nyal, Central Tibet.  He is best known for combining the Kadampa tradition with the Mahamudra and tantric teachings of Milarepa, and for his famous book, The Jewel Ornament of Liberation. Gampopa previously lived as a Bodhisattva renowned for herbal healing abilities during the time of Shakyamuni Buddha, who predicted this rebirth. For the first part of his life, Gampopa lived as a householder and became an accomplished physician. Upon the death of his wife and children from an epidemic, his mind turned wholly toward Dharma and he was ordained and practiced in the Kadampa order. The first time he heard the name, "Milarepa," Gampopa knew this to be the name of his Guru and immediately sought him out. Though he had to go through many hardships of practice under Milarepa, Gampopa early on showed signs of his high ability and destiny and advanced very quickly. After years of practice, Milarepa acknowledged the excellence and vastness of Gampopa's realization. Milarepa sent him to the east to a mountain area called Gampo Trashi Rewo where Gampopa attracted thousands of students. Four of his disciples in particular stood out and came to spread what is now known as the "Four Great" schools of the Kagyupa. Among these four students was Dusum Khyenpa, the First Karmapa.

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