Not long afterward, Yeshe Od, the King of Guge, built several monasteries and sent young men to India to study Buddhist scripture in order to revive Buddhism in Tibet. One of those sent to India was the great translator Rinchen Zangpo, who went to India three times. He later became the abbot of Toling Monastery, translated Buddhist sutras, taught disciples, and gradually spread Buddhism in central Tibet. Tibetan historians call this the “propagation of Buddhism from Ngari.”
In the first century of Tibetan Buddhism’s revival, the 10 men from U-Tsang had many monasteries built and monastic communities organized, forming the mainstream of Tibetan Buddhism. Ewalilg Monastery and Samada Monastery in Khangmar County, Shalu-Gyalgon Monastery, and Dranang Monastery still exist. Their religious works of art reflect the influence of art from Tibet’s Han areas and the Longyou area of Hexi (the area in modern Gansu Province under Tubo occupation). The works are among the best of Tibetan Buddhist art.
The Guge king also invited Atisha, an eminent Bengali monk, to preach in Tibet in 1042. Drom Tonpa ( 1004-64), a leading Buddhist in U-Tsang (central Tibet), invited Atisha to preach there in 1045. After Atisha died in Nyethang in 1054, Drom Tonpa became his successor. In 1056, he built Reting Monastery to the north of Lhasa, from which developed the Kadampa sect.
At that time, Surpoche (1002-62), a Buddhist monk who practiced at home, built Upalung Monastery and collated the scriptures translated during the Tubo Dynasty. The Nyingma sect developed from this monastery.
In 1073, Konchok Gyalpo of the Khon family built Sakya Monastery, from which the Sakya sect developed.
Marpa was one of the greatest Tibetan translators and the founder of the Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism. He was also the teacher of the renowned Tibetan poet-saint Milarepa. Milarepa’s disciple Dakpo Lhaje built Dakpo Monastery in 1121, and Khyungpo Naljorpa built Shangpa Monastery in the same year. The Dakpo Kagyu and Shangpa Kagyu schools of Buddhism developed from these two monasteries.
In the Dakpo Kagyu school, Dusum Khyenpa, a prominent disciple of Dakpo Lhaje, built Karma Monastery in Qamdo in 1147 and Tsurpu Monastery in 1187, from which developed the Karma Kagyu sect. In 1185, Phagmo Drupa, another outstanding disciple, built Dansa Thel Monastery and founded the Pagtru Kagyu sect. In 1160, Darma Wangchuk, yet another prominent disciple, built Barom Monastery and founded the Barom Kagyu sect. In 1175, Shang Tsalpa, also a prominent disciple, built Tsalpa Monastery and founded the Tsalpa Kagyu sect. These are the four major lineages of the Dakpo Kagyu tradition.