The Film “Unmistaken Child” and Tibetan Buddhism

This beautiful and profoundly moving documentary follows the four-year search for the reincarnation of Lama Konchog, a world-renowned Tibetan master who passed away in 2001 at age 84. The Dalai Lama charges the deceased monk’s devoted disciple, Tenzin Zopa (who had been in his service since the age of seven), to search for his master’s reincarnation. Tenzin sets off on this quest through breathtaking landscapes and remote Tibetan villages. Along the way, Tenzin listens to stories about young children with special characteristics, performs rarely seen ritual tests and obtains astrological divinations designed to determine the location and identity of his reincarnating master. He eventually presents the child he believes to be his reincarnated master to the Dalai Lama who certifies the final choice. After permission is granted by the parents of  the boy, he is inducted into a lamasery to begin his long education. His former disciple, now his care-taker guardian, accompanies him as the master, now in child form, bestows blessings on the thousands of devotees who have come to the public initiation ceremony. Obviously authorized by the highest lamaist authorities, this film represents a teaching on the deepest mysteries of reincarnation.