Lozang Dhondrup (Pete Smith) peacefully took his final breath at approximately 9:30pm Friday November 13. A Guru puja was held in the Chenrezig Institute Gompa on Friday November 20th at 6pm.

lozang dhondrup

Pete Smith was born in Brisbane in July of 1965. He completed his schooling in Brisbane and then studied Graphic Design at the Qld College of Arts.

Pete had a passion for graphic design and he also loved all types of food and cooking.
He loved his friends dearly and was always cooking for them or going out to dinner.
He worked in Sydney for several years as a graphic designer, production manager, and sales representative for Flash Photobition.

Pete always had very strong humanitarian ideals, and was always looking for something or some way to make a difference in people's lives.

In 2005 Pete had a burning desire to find his place in life. Chenrezig Institute is where he finally found peace within himself and could finally become the beautiful sentient being that he was.
(contributed by friend Jill Walsh)

Pete Smith became Lozang Dhondrup when he took Rabjung ordination from Geshe Tashi Tsering (Kusho Lama Lozang Rigdzin) in 2006 at Chenrezig Institute and then two years later in November 2008 took Getsul vows also with Geshe Tashi Tsering.

Dhondrup told lots of stories of meeting the Dharma and his teachers. He told me a few times about meeting Geshe Tashi Tsering. He was a volunteer at Chenrezig Institute for a while before he became a monk, working in Lama Yeshe’s Big love Cafe. He told how for weeks he was hearing about “Geshe la, Geshe la” all the time and not really knowing who this “Geshe la” was. Then one afternoon he was sitting in the Cafe and heard this great joyful laugh coming down the hill. Then bouncing down the steps to the cafe was Geshe Tashi Tsering. Dhondrup told how he was totally in awe this time.
When Lama Zopa Rinpoche visited CI in 2006 Dhondrup told about meeting his root guru, when Rinpoche arrived he was in the welcoming line and Rinpoche came by put his hand on the top of Dhondrup’s head and said to him “Thank you for all the work you have done.” Dhondrup said that it felt like his head was buzzing for days to come after this.

After he was ordained Dhondrup attended the Basic Programme at CI as much as he could but CI also needed a Kitchen Manager at that time so he took up the role for about a year. He worked really hard, baked the best brownies ever, despite his ill health and kept the Cafe and kitchen going beautifully. Dhondrup saw a need for the monks community to be physically established at CI. From his own experience he saw that it was necessary to create a place for monks wanting to study to live at CI. This was no small undertaking and it took him lots of his previous business skills (which he admitted that he thought he had happily left behind in Sydney) to create the plans and raise the necessary funds.

After he got the OK to establish the Monks community he wasted no time in commencing the renovation of an old house on the property. He literally put his body on the line for this undertaking, giving it everything he had. But really it was his vision that made the project an eventual success. A year after he commenced renovations and after a lot of different causes and conditions came into being there is now a small monks community at CI, Lozang Dragpa Monastery as named by Lama Zopa Rinpoche.

Due to Dhondrup’s kindness, enthusiasm, and sheer determination our small group of 5 monks has the opportunity to study the Buddha Dharma at the high level that the Basic Program offers.
Without Dhondrup’s efforts there would be no monks community at CI. He got the ball rolling and now it’s our job to keep it going. His vision was not for himself to be able to stay at CI. He really was doing it for others. The enormous efforts in his life at CI are a lesson in joyous perseverance and his death a lesson in impermanence. May Dhondrup always meet with infinitively kind teachers that can lead him to peerless enlightenment so he may be able to bring benefit to countless beings everywhere.
(contributed by Lozang Jhampa – Manager of the Lozang Dragpa Monastery, a project of Chenrezig Institute)