Unmistaken Child is an independent documentary, directed by Nati Baratz and written by Ilil Alexander in 2008.
The filming began in October 2001 over a time frame of five and a half years. Awards: RiverRun International Film Festival, Haifa International Film Festival, and Cracow Film Festival.
”Unmistaken Child” documentary – Synopsis
After the death of a Tibetan master – Geshe Lama Konchog, on the 15th of October 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, a child who may be anywhere in the world.
Tenzin sets off on foot, mule, and even by helicopter, through breathtaking landscapes and remote traditional Tibetan villages.
He listens to stories about children with special characteristics, performs rituals and rarely seen tests designed to determine the likelihood of reincarnation, and eventually presents his chosen one to the Dalai Lama, who will make the final decision.
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The beauty of this movie extends beyond the fantastic scenery and ceremonies. The pure love the assistant had for his master, his treatment of the child, and his utter confidence that the child is his master re-incarnated is touching and thought to be provoking.
The uncomplicated devotion of the people to their religion and customs is as stunning as the scenery.
Besides learning the process for choosing religious leaders, you are behind the scenes of the monasteries, where you see how the monks eat, sleep and relate. You are in the homes of the rural people who live like their ancestors. The people do not seem to notice the cameras. In scenes where they talk to the camera, they appear to be totally genuine.
Geshe Lama Konchog (1917–2001) was a renowned Tibetan Buddhist who had thousands of followers around the world and was recognized by the Dalai Lama to be a Great Mahasiddha, or realized guru.
Geshe Lama Konchog spent a total of 26 years in an isolated mountain retreat, seeking illumination. Beginning in 1985, he resided at Kopan Monastery in Kathmandu, Nepal.
In an interview by Jean Chuang, Geshe Lama Konchog was asked: At what time does Geshe-la get up in the morning at Kopan? Geshe replied:
”I wake up at the time I wake up, sleep at the time to sleep, eat when the time is for food and go to the toilet when I need to go to the toilet.”
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