Geshe Tenphel was born to a nomadic agricultural family in Domo, Tibet, near the state of Sikkim, India. In 1959 with the Chinese invasion of Tibet, Geshe Tenphel’s family fled to Sikkim and later to south India. Geshe Tenphel became a monk when he was nine years old but continued studying at the local secular school while memorizing Buddhist scriptures in his holidays. He entered Sera Je monastery at the age of 17, where he completed 21 years of a monastic scholastic education, graduating with honors in 1994 with a Lharampa Geshe degree, the highest Tibetan Buddhist doctorate conferred in the Gelug tradition. Geshe Tenphel studied tantra at Gyuto Tantric College for a year before being asked to take part in an international tour of Sera Je monks. In 1997 he led the group of monks at Sera Je specialized in practices related to Hayagriva. Since January 1998 he has been resident teacher at Istituto Lama Tzong Khapa, where he teaches numerous short courses as well as the Basic Program and Masters Program.