Dirty Laundry

Standard

As far as the major religions go, Buddhism has a pretty good reputation. In general, we don’t go around embarrassing ourselves in public on a major scale. You’ve never seen stories about pedophile Buddhist monks, nor are we associated with terrorism in people’s minds. We don’t have any problems with evolution and seem to be pretty chill with the whole gay marriage thing. Our panties don’t tend to get into a twist about other people’s very personal choices. Overall, we don’t tend to make a big fuss or even statements about political matters. And hell, and the most famous Buddhist in the world is a beloved public figure with a great laugh, twinkly eyes and a Nobel Peace Prize under his robes, to boot.

So, when the whole issue of Tibet comes up, the Dalai Lama and the Tibet supporters tend to get a very sympathetic hearing. Even people who don’t understand the whole history of the issue tend to come down on the side of Tibet simply because the picture in their minds of the Dalai Lama and Buddhist monks and nuns is that of peace and compassion. This positive image is a huge weapon in the arsenal of the pro-Tibet camp.

Oh? What’s this? Why are these Buddhist monks and nuns protesting the Dalai Lama? Oh lordy, lordy, it’s Tibetan Buddhism’s dirty laundry getting strung up for all the world to see. It’s the Dorje Shudgden controversy rearing its ugly head again.

The controversy is quite complex and there are plenty of resources on the web on both sides if you really want to dig deep. (Also for further information about the NKT that is free from the NKT PR machine, please see go here) However, here’s a thumbnail sketch from my perspective: Years ago, Geshe Kelsang Gyatso (aka Geshe-la) who is the founder of the New Kadampa Tradition got into a rift with the Dalai Lama over a dharma protector/demon (depending on your view) named Dorje Shugden. My feeble understanding is that the Dalai Lama views Dorje Shugden as a demon who is out to harm the Dalai Lama as well as the future of Tibet. In 1996 he asked his followers to no longer engage in any practices worshipping/propitiating to Dorje Shugden. To do so would be to go against His Holiness’ well being as well as the Tibetan cause. Geshe-la, on the other hand, views Dorje Shugden to be an integral part of the lineage that both he and the Dalai Lama share. In fact, to NOT do Dorje Shugden practice would be going against their teacher Trijang Rimpoche. In Tibet, after the ban, reports say that Dorje Shugden practitioners were being oppressed and harassed. The conflict gets ugly and people on both sides are harmed, and even murdered. Geshe-la joins the fight on the side of the Shugden practitioners and calls for his students in the NKT to protest the Dalai Lama outside his speaking engagements in the States and Europe. The reputation of the NKT got pretty tarnished. Geshe-la eventually gave up the cause publicly. The NKT continued to practice Shugden. Outside certain Tibetan Buddhist circles no one really cared.

Apparently, because there has been recent activity against Shugden practitioners in Tibet, the NKT is once again taking up the picket line against the Dalai Lama. When I first heard this, I shook my head in dismay. While my NKT days are now behind me, I still have good friends who study and practice within the NKT. These may be very confusing times for them. I remember when I was asked to participate in the protests of a decade ago. Here I was this relatively new practitioner, and being offered a free trip to New York City. New York City!? I love New York! Oh, if I accept the free trip, I have to participate in the protest against the Dalai Lama . . . uh . . . um . . . no, no thank you. The issue made me uncomfortable then, and it makes me uncomfortable now.

I don’t know who is wrong or who is right, or if there is even a wrong or a right in the matter. If the Dalai Lama is truly oppressing the people who wish to practice Shugden, that is wrong. Right? I mean, most people would agree that religious intolerance is wrong, and when we see it happening, good hearted people should stand up for the oppressed. Yet, doesn’t the Dalai Lama, as the spiritual leader of most of Tibetan Buddhism, have a right to change doctrine? But, what about his role as the political leader of Tibet? Can you truly have both a political and spiritual leader without advocating a theocracy? Tibet is really the only country I know where people long for the old days of the theocracy.

I guess my real problem is the timing of these protests. With the Beijing Olympics putting the Tibet issue on the front page, how messed up is it that a splinter group comes and tries to move the spotlight into this little known corner of Tibetan infighting. I mean, come on . . . Also, the NKT, as an organization seems to be going through some turbulent times and people’s faith is really being put to the test. Who knows, maybe that is the point. Maybe the point is shake people out of their comfort zone, to strip them of their attachment to good reputation and to test if they truly have reliance upon their spiritual guide. I don’t understand it. I’m really hoping that the reasons behind the protests do have to do with religious freedom and justice, and not anger or power or wanting to suck up to the Chinese government.

I’m glad this is not my battle. I don’t want to fight. All I can do is pray: may everyone be happy, and may everyone be free from misery.

Advertisements

616 responses »

  1. yeah baby under my robes ! ! ! ~ I got yer Noble Prize for ya right here. we couldn’t ask for a better PR nightmare and isn’t it delightful?

    Is it supposed to hurt when i leave my come fort zone? I don’t think mere mortals are ever gonna make sense outa this mess ~ so then it seams to me it all comes down to how messy do ya wanna get?

  2. This is shocking, an immeasurable disgrace. This is damning evidence to me that dholgyal supporters (predominantly the NKT) are supported by the Chinese Communist Party to continue this practice. Why become so vocal now, when the Dalai Lama is working desperately for peace in Tibet. If only to try and divert the attention from the horrific practices of the Chinese government.
    I too will be praying, (not so) Lazy Buddhist.

  3. Then again, things might just nastier and nastier, as I first suspected they would. It’s going to take a while before the consequences of this become evident, or before we’re able to process it properly.

  4. I was at the protest in the linked picture, and happily so. I can assure you of a few things:

    (1) There is no connection to the Chinese government or to the Olympics. There has been an escalation of anti-Shugden persecution since January of this year, so the timing is coincidental.

    (2) The protests are not sponsored by the NKT. They are sponsored by the Western Shugden Society, which includes both NKT practitioners and Shugden practitioners from outside the NKT. At the protest on the 22nd, there were about 100 Tibetans who practice Dorje Shugden. I found it very moving to stand up in support of their religious freedom.

    If this were just a case of a religious leader telling people not to engage in a certain practice, that would not be such a big deal. But, this is a government persecuting people for practicing their tradition. Tibetans are now being required to to take an oath not to practice Shugden and not to share material resources — even food– with those who do. Shugden practitioners are being denied identity cards, which are necessary for them to buy food. Mothers are being told they must cut all contact with their sons. These are not Buddhist policies, and I am very happy to stand against them.

    I think anyone who knows what is being done to Shugden practitioners in the Tibetan exile community will be outraged. If the Dalai Lama wants to tell people not to practice it, that’s fine, but he should not oppress those who disagree.

    I would also like to say that the general spirit of the protest was refreshingly free of anger. I personally wasn’t sure if I could shout slogans and hold signs without stirring up anger inside, but what I found was that I was protesting non-virtue and harmfulness. This is not personal, and it is not fueled by hatred — it is a compassionate action to stop an injustice.

  5. well . . axtually ~ some protests are being organized by the NKT. This is a test and is only test – if this were an actual emergency we’d all be vaporized by now or caught up in the rapture = may be the same thing?

    people are suffering and we are helpless

  6. oh yeah, and what I should have said wuz ~ therez no laundry like dirty laundry = srub a dub dub

  7. to monkeys:

    there are no protests being organized by the NKT, but perhaps you will think I am splitting hairs. Members of the NKT definitely support the protests, and communication is happening among NKT Center managers and so on about where they will be, how to get there, etc. And the WSS is providing transportation some of the time. Individual NKT practitioners are free to make their own decisions.

    Along those lines I would like to add that at the first protest the organizers urged us not to judge others on how much they participated. There was no pressure that I could detect.

  8. I don’t understand… how does a government in exile have the authority over who gets identity cards? Does the government-in-exile have any legal authority in a foreign country?

  9. Hon’ble mrs. Justice G. Mittal
    In the High Court of Delhi at New Delhi Extraordinary civil original jurisdiction civil writ petition no. 2222/08
    Petitioner: Dorje Shugden devotees charitable & religious society
    Respondents: UOI (Union of India) the cabinet secy

    To: Tenzin Gyatso also known as the 14th Dalai Lama

    Thekchen Cheoling po McLeod Ganj, Dharamsala H.P.

    Whereas the petitioner above mentioned has presented a petition under articles 226 & 227 of the constitution of India.
    And whereas the said petition came up for motion hearing on 8-4-08 This court both order that show cause notice of admission be issued to the respondent for 12-5-08 why the petition be not admitted, show cause notice is hereby given to you that the case will be laid before the registrar 12-5-08 for admission.

    You are hereby directed to appear before this registrar on the 12th day of may 2008 at 10.30 A.M. personally or through duly authorised advocate of this court to show cause against admission of the writ petition, failing which the case will be decided in your absence.

    Given under my hand and the seal of the High Court of Delhi is the 11th day of april 2008-04-25

    Note: Copy of CMP and CWP enclosed
    CMP 5543,4260/08 shall also be heard of the above mentioned date.
    Signed: Administrative Officer for Registrar
    Sealed: the seal of the High Court of Delhi.

    P.S.:

    The same petition is also sent to:

    The Tibetan Governement in Exile, office of the Central Tibetan Administration through Kalon Tripa, Samdhong Rimpoche, Dharamsala

    The state of Himachal Pradesh (A) through the chief secretary, secretariat bldg, Simla, Himachal Pradesh

    The state of Himachal Pradesh (B) through the resident commisioner, Himachal Bhavan, SP Marg, New Delhi

  10. Dorje Shugden Charitable & Religious Society
    Press Release, New Delhi, April 28, 2008

    At the time when Tibet is going through one of its most difficult times in history, to be compelled to speak about Tibetan internal problems we find most disheartening. If the problem were a minor one, certainly the right thing would be to down-play and ignore it.

    However, the difficulty we face, is neither simple nor limited to just a small number of individuals. Rather, it has affected the lives of countless Tibetans, both in exile and in Tibet. In short, our problem is a most serious religious prosecution with violation of basic human rights – a situation without precedent in all of Tibetan history and irrational to such a point that it can hardly be grasped by any sensible person of this world.

    To give a better understanding of the unimaginable scope of the present situation among the Tibetan people, let us try with this analogy:

    If H.H. the Pope would denounce one particular saint out of the many widely venerated saints of the Catholic church, such a step would certainly become an issue. However, if H.H. the pope would then declare that saint an evil spirit, with the reasoning that the veneration of that specific saint is harmful for his own life as well as for the political freedom of Italy, the issue would become ridiculous. On top of that, if the Italian government would then implement the pope’s antipathy for that saint in government policies, forcing all Italians to testify their abandonment of that saint in public swearings, and forcing them to publicly sign that they will no longer maintain any spiritual or material relation to anyone not obeying the pope’s decree, then the honest people of this world would certainly rise upon such an outrageous act – but just that is our case.

    This present situation has its roots in the late 1970ies, when H.H. Dalai Lama increasingly succumbed to the influence of ill-intending advisors, such as the the so-called ‘state oracle’ and other policy-makers in the exile government. These people have managed to change H.H. Dalai Lama’s attitude towards one specific deity out of many hundreds of similar ones respected in Tibetan Buddhism. Hundred thousands of Tibetans have relied on this deity called Dorje Shugden for many generations, among them many extraordinary personalities of outstanding service to the Tibetan people, including the Dalai Lama’s own personal guru Kyabje Trijang Dorje Chang, his lord chamberlain who organised the safe escape to India, his body guards and many Khampa freedom fighters giving their lives for the safety of His Holiness.

    After initial critics against the deity by the state oracle and His Holiness in 1978 the subsequent allegations worsened year by year. In spring 1996 His Holiness made his first public denouncement of the deity in Dharamsala during spring teachings, with the words: “If you people want me to be damned and do not care about Tibetan freedom, you go ahead worshipping that evil spirit.”

    These words have been followed by tremendous turmoil in the exile Tibetan community up to this day. The Tibetan exile government implemented His Holiness’ personal dislike for the deity as a government policy and started to wage a world-wide campaign against the deity and each and every individual connected to it.

    Thanks to the generosity and protection of the government and the people of India, Tibetans have enjoyed decades of harmonious life in exile, rebuilding their monasteries and following their studies and religious activities in peace and security. Under the continued pressure of the exile government, that peace and harmony were quickly destroyed and a tremendous schism throughout Tibetan society created.

    Many times signature campaigns for the abandonment of every practice linked with this deity have been conducted, which lead to some individuals complying as a result of their respect as well as their fear of upsetting the Dalai Lama. Others expressed their sincere dilemma to choose between His Holiness and ones own religious faith and practice, comparing such a choice to the unacceptable obligation to choose by signature between ones father and ones mother and thus declined their signature. Whoever declined to abandon the deity was looked upon as traitor. Such proceeding automatically created heavy divisions in the Tibetan community in exile, and under all kind of pretexts the exile Tibetan government made strongest effort to transport this mysterious campaign to the Tibetan homeland, thus causing the unfortunate schism to spread in Tibet as well.

    The worsening situation led to the necessity to organise ourselves, this way the Dorje Shugden society has been founded in 1998. Since its founding, our organisation has tried every reasonable method to solve this problem, like submitting appeals to H.H. Dalai Lama, to our religious department, to religious and political dignitaries – requesting understanding, a compassionate regard to our situation, and petitioning to let us continue our own religious practice as our masters and forefathers have done. All these attempts have been dismissed with harsh rejection. Instead, pressure and restrictions imposed by His Holiness and the exile government were continuously increased, up to the point where the deity now-a-days is publicly denounced as a Chinese demon and all its adherents accused of being Chinese spies and collaborators.

    Particularly this January have His Holiness and Samdong Lama, prime minister of exile Tibet, publicly and vehemently called the public opinion to rise against followers of Dorje Shugden. Again public signature and swearing campaigns in and out of the monasteries were held to make everybody swear not only to abandon every link to the deity but also to abandon any spiritual and material link of any kind with any adherent of Dorje Shugden.

    As a result, the monastic community was forced to separate, breaking all their links of studying and praying together. Likewise, also on the worldly level, any social link such as eating together or living together or making business together have been forbidden. Some organisations are even urging that every adherent of Dorje Shugden should be expelled from India. Children of practitioners are harassed in schools and even some shops carry signs stating that Shugden practitioners are not allowed to enter.

    This way we have been classified and discriminated as total outcasts to our Tibetan society. Such a most unbelievable situation has become true and an unfortunate reality for us in everyday life.

    With our limited means we have approached the government of India as well as some international organisations, but due to the paramount reputation of H.H. Dalai Lama and the inconceivableness of the issue little attention has been received until now. Therefore we have taken the opportunity of the present situation, where the attention of the world is focused on Tibet, to make this problem known to the world, especially to the government and the people of India, who are our sole hope, refuge, and source of protection. We ask the genuine attention of the honest people of the world as witness.

    As long as there is disregard and violation of human rights and religious freedom within our own community by our own leaders, there is no solving of the Tibetan problem on the international level.

    It is also important to note that all those persons, who have venerated the deity Dorje Shugden in the past and do so at present, do not belong to any strange sect and have never been an organised formation. If the veneration of protecting deities besides Lord Buddha, who is the central and supreme object of refuge for all Buddhists, would classify a person to be a follower of a sect, then all Tibetan Buddhists will fall in such a category, because the adherents of all four Tibetan traditions, including H.H. Dalai Lama, commonly venerate a multitude of protecting deities.

    We would also like to state, that we do not pursue any political aims, that we neither support the Chinese policy towards Tibet, nor any impairing of the Olympic games 2008.

    For further details please take a look at our website:
    www. shugdensociety.info

  11. Anything “bad” coming from the Dalai Lama does not surprise me. He wasn’t overly concerned about changing the feudal state of Tibet (ie. slavery) while he was in power. The man, while inspiring, does have two faces, like everyone else.

  12. Thanks, Stevo. Interesting thing is, this debate isn’t even about Tibet, per se, but is rather a conflict in the Tibetan exile community in India.

    It is not my point here to say who is right or wrong. The Shugden practitioners in the Tibetan exile community probably do have a legitimate beef with the Dalai Lama. When an edict is issued by your spiritual leader that can be heavy enough, but when that spiritual leaader is also your political leader and has the power to enforce it, well . . . Just as I believe people have a right to protest when they disagree with their government, I believe the Shudgenites do have the right to speak out. However, I also believe that some wisdom needs to be exercised. If they protest and discredit the DL, how will that impact their brethren back in their former homeland of Tibet? We can’t fix everything, at least at one time, so perhaps there has to be a compromise for the greater good.

    My main point has to do with what the heck the NKT is doing getting involved in this again. I recall very clearly at the 2006 US Fall Festival, that Geshe-la told (and Samden hammered home the point) that we should not get involved in politics. Our job as Buddhists was to pray. Of course, this got interpreted in all kinds of ways. Some, that I heard, fell into the extreme camp of thinking that we should not even vote. Me, I heard it as we shouldn’t be putting our names to political causes – no Buddhists for Obama stickers on the ol’ bumper.

    There are plenty of injustices in the world, and as NKT-ers, we were never encouraged to engaged in compassionate political actions. Yet, here with the Shugden issue, leaders with the NKT are out there with bullhorns and raised fists (and yes, I know they were not there under the banner of the NKT, but rather the Western Shugden Society. But all legal, tax or PR fronts aside, it is the NKT that is at the forefront here). Why is it OK to protest this internal Tibetan community-in-exile political issue, but not other political issues. This Shugden ban on no direct impact on NKT practitioners. The NKT does not consider itself part of the Tibetan Buddhist community – in fact has made a point of identifying itself as Western tradition.

    Anyway, once again I have lost my original point. What else is new? I promise I’ll get back to discussing my mundane life with cats and rabbits soon enough.

  13. well LB eye m purty sure this rises above the level of poly tics free tie bet etc. however pro tester the NKT is part of the Western Shugdan Society and Geshe Kelsang is personally directing his closest assistants to org agonize at least sum if not all of these events.

    eye m also purty sure that neither of the above is the impotent poynt LB’s intentions a side. clearly (orr knot) there is something more subtle going on that challenges believers and non a like ~ witness the passion in the posts above

    my main poynt iz after the laundry is done will my sox match?

  14. to LB:
    “Anyway, once again I have lost my original point. What else is new?”

    Actually I think you have a very great way of staying ‘on point’ which is why this blog is so attractive ~

  15. Lets get one thing straight. The WSS (Western Shugden Society) is the NKT. Ok so they have got some Tibetan Shugden supporters with them. If you go to their web site you will see that Kelsang Khyenrab – the Deputy Spiritual Director – of the NKT with megaphone in hand. Pretty stupid if you are maintaining that those NKT members are there as a non organised coalition. I have friends who live in NKT centres and they have all confirmed that NKT residents teachers are encouraging members to protest against the Dalai Lama. They are organising protests when he comes to the UK in Nottingham later this year. It’s official (in a completely unofficial ‘it’s not the NKT doing this’ kind of way)

    Those Tibetan monks living in India – who paid for you to protest in the US. For those attending NKT centres – who is paying for Khyenrab et al to fly to the US to protest? (sorry peacfully campaign).

    Why do I write this? Well people in glass houses ….. THe NKT don’t practice religious freedom in their own centres. Anyone who disagrees is asked to leave. Funny that. So get your own house in order. Think of the welfare of all Tibetans at a such a sensitive time like this.

    For an alternative view of the NKT – by ex NKT members – go to Yahoo groups/Newkadampasurvivors

  16. I’m disappointed that “a protester” only decided to answer monkey and not my direct questions.

    So here it is again in case someone feels inclined to satisfy my curiosity:

    “I don’t understand… how does a government in exile have the authority over who gets identity cards? Does the government-in-exile have any legal authority in a foreign country?”

  17. “Those Tibetan monks living in India – who paid for you to protest in the US. For those attending NKT centres – who is paying for Khyenrab et al to fly to the US to protest? (sorry peacfully campaign).”

    Of course the NKT is using its resources to support the protests, that much is obvious. This is going to be interesting to see if the Tibetan Geshes and Rinpoches will support the protests, since many of them have different citizenship now, they are much less under the Dalai Lama’s control.
    ————————————–
    “I don’t understand… how does a government in exile have the authority over who gets identity cards? Does the government-in-exile have any legal authority in a foreign country?”

    The WSS (Western Shugden Society) website claims that Tibetan’s have been requested not to apply for Indian citizenship by the GIE (government-in-exile). If this is the case, then indeed, the GIE maintains a firm control on all Tibetan refugees. If you check the video, the English nun states quite clearly that Dorje Shugden practitioners are being denied ID, she seems to be very convinced of it and asks that the world’s press goes and investigates for themselves. If she is correct, then NKT or not, I’m with the protesters.

  18. Who knows what the truth is in all of this. Time will tell. I suspect that the Shugden issue (religious freedom) is not the real issue. If you look into Tibetan history – this sort of carry on is nothing new. It is a Tibetan issue.

    The big question for me is this….. Why are Kelsang Gyatso /NKT getting involved (again)? The NKT proclaims not to be a Tibetan Buddhist organisation. It is a Western Buddhist organisation. Its right to practice Shugden is not threatened by the Dalai Lama. It is within its power to establish a monastery in India where Tibetan Shugden supporters could practice freely. Then – no problem. The NKt’s ‘pure’ lineage is not under threat. The Dalai Lama is exercising his right to control those monasteries under his jurisdiction just as Kelsang Gyatso does in his dharma centres.
    I do not support the denial of religious freedom whatsoever. What we see here is that great mix of spirituality and politics all mixed together. What I object to is the pretence that it is not. I will finish with an extract from a letter from Kelsang Gyatso, written when the NKT began their protest against the Dalai Lama in 1996 – the only difference being that then the NKT didn’t hide behind the WSS. Truth or lies – you decide.
    ‘After the third demonstration, I strongly requested the members of the Shugden Supporters Community to stop all political activity immediately. Because I understood that HH would not accept, there was no meaning in continuing. I requested the people in Dharma Centers to forget all these politics and concentrate solely on their Dharma practice. In this way our activity lasted from May until July, only three months. This was my first experience of politics in this life. I pray that this will never happen again in the future.

    During the second demonstration in Switzerland, in support of the Shugden Supporters Community, I also wrote a letter commenting on the activities of HH. My motivation was solely to help Tibetan people and to protect Je Tsongkhapas doctrine from degenerating. However, my letter upset many
    Tibetan people and many Western practitioners who regard HH as their rootGuru. I would like to apologize sincerely to all of them’.

  19. Ron. This repetition of ‘millions of people being forced to abandon their Guru’. Are you saying that the majority of Tibetan Buddhists are Shugden practitioners?

    My quoting Kelsang Gyatso was all about showing his intention – concerning not mixing religion and politics. Surely intention is everything in Buddhism. Yesterday i decided to help others. Today I changed my mind. Nothing wrong with that then?

    What arguments did i put forward? I do not see an argument. Therefore there is nothing that does not make sense. I am simply stating that GKG/NKT are getting involved in politics again. That’s all. Did i say it was wrong of GKG to change his mind? No. Simply that he had.

    Funny how you don’t address the issue of why the NKT cannot do something practical and build a monastery for Shugden practitioners. Surely better than another Dharma Hotel, World Peace Cafe. Maybe they can appoint a few Tibetans as Resident teachers in the UK. Lama Yeshe requested GKG to come to Manjushri. No difference then. They need all the experience they can get.

    Are you not just Ron but Ron Harvey who is infamous for his balanced debates on Buddhachat.

    Apologies if you are not but the style is strikingly similar.

  20. Dear Ron,

    You keep checking and i will keep checking.

    Still amazed that you don’t enter into a meaningful discussion about anything i have said.

    Love the idea of anti NKT zealots though. The main problems NKT have are coming from their own (free thinking) party line zealots. LOL.

    End the discussion. It never started in the first place. I must have touched a raw nerve somewhere though the! The way you respond is all revealing.

    ‘There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio,
    Than are dreamt of in your philosophy’.

    I will leave it there too.

  21. Ron,

    Just to clarify – my beef is with the NKT’s position on this and in the light of it’s own double speak and intolerance with regard to it’s own internal affairs.

    I do not think GKG is absolutely wrong and Dalai Lama absolutely right or vice versa. I have practiced Shugden for 9 years. I will not take sides on this one way or the other. If we are on different sides but are honest and open then this is good for both of us. I did not mean to be antagonistic to you personally and apologise if this is how i came across.

    See you on the other side.

  22. its a mobius loop de loop = both sides are the same side but its really amazing to cut one in two the long way ~ try it – yewl like it!

    is that a banana?

  23. These activities of the Western Shugden Society (or New Kadampa Tradition) are an amazing example of cross cultural confusion, lacking any knowledge of the Vinaya, and being based on confusion about what human rights and religious freedom means.

    As people are free to do religious practices as they like to do in private, even when seen as harmful, and NKT and the Shugden followers practice Shugden as they like to do and nobody stops or “bans” them doing that practice (although it is seen by the majority of Tibetan Buddhists from all schools as harmful), the monastic community is also free to ask those who practice Shugden worship, which is seen by 96% of the Gelug-monastics (the majority) as harmful, to do it not at their place (Drepung, Sera or Ganden).

    If the majority of the monastic community ask those monks who from their point of view do a harmful & destructive practice, to stop it or otherwise to leave the monastery, what is wrong with this? This is their right as well.

    Every community has the right to set up rules for the sake of the community’s peace and development.

    Those expelled monks can set up their own monasteries with the financial help of Kundeling Rinpoche, Lama Gangchen, the Chinese and Geshe Kelsang Gyatso. Nobody forbade them to do it at another place, they were asked to stop it in the monasteries, where the majority of monks disagree strongly with this practice.

    Let’s ask Geshe Kelsang Gyatso:
    What is more important the peace and harmony of 10.000 monks or the personal freedom of six, or 300 monks, who do something which is seen by the majority as destructive?

    As I said, those few expelled monks can create their own monasteries and practice there as they like to do. They have that freedom, as well as doing that practice at other places. However, in every community freedom is naturally limited for the sake of the majorities conducive development. Shugden worship is not seen by the majority as a conducive nor useful practice, it is seen as harmful and destructive.

    Moreover the confusion of NKT is stunning. Geshe Kelsang Gyatso (as well as Kundeling) forbid the veneration and images of the Dalai Lama (as the Chinese do too) they have a lot to do right in front of their own doors which is far more questionable and dictatorlike than the democratic decisions of the Sangha community in India.

    For monks it is not correct to disrespect the decisions of the majority of the ordained Sangha community, rumouring the own dissatisfaction and projections by press campaigns to the world audience, putting the blame on the Dalai Lama, denouncing him in such a hard time of struggle with the Chinese, undermining his activities for the sake of the Tibetans.

    I think, such inappropriate actions are the cause of disharmony and suffering, and show how fundamentalist and deluded these people are. So much self-pity and self-centred behaviour, seeing only the own perspective while accusing only others, is quite amazing.

    Let’s listen what these people have to say:

    “All these horrible situations have developed through the power of your evil actions. This is our valid evidence to prove that you are not Buddhist. Because of this, we also believe that you are the saffron robed Muslim. Throughout your life you have pretended to be a Buddhist holy being giving Buddhist teachings that you have stolen from Trijang Rinpoche. By doing this, you have cheated people throughout the world. In summary, it is clear that your real nature is cruel and very evil. Copyright © 2008 WesternShugdenSociety.org.”

  24. @Captain Pugwash #24:

    I am not so sure, if this is an issue of religious freedom of politic. I think, if people would have more background information they could recognize, that many high Lamas see and saw Shugden Worshipping as a harmful and destructive practice, which has a negative effect on the mind and the outer, inner and secret practice conditions.

    Especially Nyingma lamas and Kaygue lamas see it that way. They see the force of Shugden as something very destructive, demonic. I asked many of those lamas, and they all said this, without exception. Moreover all of them said, one should really follow the Dalai Lama’s advise in that issue. They added, if there are difficulties due to past engagement in this practice, one should go for refuge to the Dalai Lama. I know a lot of people who had many many difficulties regarding that practice. Some wrote to HHDL and he prayed for them and sent them a protection string. Those people said to me this helped them. I had a powerful Nyingma lama who helped me. I still have his protection amulet.

    I think, it is not only politics. I think it is mainly a spiritual issue, waking the dark sides in us (greed to power, sex and money).

    Of course it has also a political connotation, because it was used for establishing Gelug exclusivism and for the sake of power struggles against the institution of the Dalai Lamas by Gelug conservatives and aristocrats, who were unhappy with his reforms (for the sake of farmers and poor people) who cut their freedoms.

    Namkai Norbu Rinpoche strongly discourages all his students to have even contact with someone who practices it – especially NKT members. What political reasons he should have for such an advice? Mindolling Trichen Rinpoche is a very strong opponent of it. Nyingmas were almost never involved in politics and seem to be the strongest opponents of that ‘practice’. So it is not only a political issue, it is also very much a spiritual issue.

    Although Shugden was practised by some Sakyas as a lower deity (worldly protector), there was also disagreement about this ‘protector’ in the Sakya school, and nowadays it is not practised any more.

    I myself don’t wish to live together with people who practice Shugden. I would also not live or move in a monastery were this is practised. (Just to protect myself from the harm and negative influence of that practice.)

    Monasteries have also (human) rights and religious freedoms: they can set up rules to protect the Sangha members. Everyone has the choice to live at another place, if one disagrees with those rules. And the majority of the monastery has also the right to ask those (very few members – 6 from some thousand) ignoring the rules and their concerns and disagreement with such a controversial practice, either to stop or to leave the place.

    Rules against Shugden worship were also set up in the past in the Monastery’s constitution e.g. by Purchog Jampa Rinpoche, a very high lama of Sera Je Monastery, who is seen as an incarnation of Buddha Maitreya.

    It is something which strikes me how one-sided and manipulative Shugden followers spread information, only to point at the end at the Dalai Lama, putting all the blame on him, denouncing him as “evil”, “cruel”, “a ruthless dictator”, their enemy or the enemy of the ‘pure’ Dharma, while ignoring the complex background of that issue, and related issues. Instead of being sensitive, mindful, trying to see other point of views (being open to a broader perspective), examine the history and neutral historical sources, looking from different angles in this issue, they exaggerate events, put a spin on the facts, spread wrong information and following a strict black & white pattern. I never met Shugden followers (including lamas), who were open to criticism or asked themselves; maybe we also did something wrong or in the past something went wrong? Where is critical reflection and analyse, which the Buddha encouraged his followers to apply?

    For me this is a sad story.

    On the other hand, I think, as any other religion is faced with fundamentalism, Buddhists are faced with fundamentalists and the issue of fundamentalism too.

    That highly developed spiritual beings, like HHDL, have people going against them is also something common. The Buddha had Devadatta, Jesus and Franz von Assisi were also faced with hostile beings. I do not wish to be a part of such people who denounce the Dalai Lama in a way how the Chinese Communist Party – a true dictatorship – enjoys.

    It is amazing how the own life can unfold.

    This is just how the things are. I decided to accept that.

  25. Captain Pugwash, you asked why the NKT cannot do something practical and build a monastery for Shugden practitioners? They are. GKG also gave a number of the monks enough money to live on for four months, out of his own money, and the NKT are sponsoring them for the rest of the year.
    But that won’t solve the problem of DL’s persecution of Dorje Shugden practitioners which has now pervaded into lay Tibetan society. This is about way more than two groups of Buddhists arguing over a Deity. It’s about people not being allowed to buy food, monks being denied water in the Indian heat, six-year old children receiving phone calls saying ‘we will kill your daddy’.

    One of the downfalls of the Bodhisattva vows is ‘not doing wrathful actions when appropriate’. I don’t see anyone other than GKG standing up to this guy, they’d all rather get their photo taken with him.

  26. Last night many Glasgow Rangers fans went on the rampage in Manchester after their team lost. Do you blame them individually or do you blame Glasgow Rangers and the Manager Walter Smith.

    Thank you for answering my question, but I am talking about resolving this conflict not just a few scraps from the table. Call the Dalai Lama’s bluff. Set up that temple for Shugden practitioners. Then if he continues to persecute them directly or indirectly the situation will become clear. He can no longer argue that he is only exercising his authority in the monasteries under his control and fulfilling the wishes of the majority of shangha in those monasteries. Otherwise you are just fighting from the same entrenched position and there will be no opportunity for a resolution.

    In reply to Ron – yes i agree but this applies to both sides – what about the Yellow Book?

    I am sure you have read this but i will post anyway for all to see.

    http://www.tibet.com/dholgyal/CTA-book/chapter-5-3.html

    http://www.lsa.umich.edu/asian/asian_detail/0,2929,25247%255Fpeople%255F21443229,00.html

  27. eye think post #19 says it all ~ tho I have to say eye really do have a soft spot for Superstitious Fools = I find they make great dinner guests.

  28. Ron, You do have a selective and simplistic way of looking at things.
    The abuser becomes the abuse.

    Quite ironic really.

    Well as NKT speak goes when they answer the abused…… ‘it must be your karma’….

    I’m off … the Black Pig is about to set sail

  29. Hi Lazy Buddhist,

    Sorry if that’s the way it came across. I was not referring to Ron as an abuser. It was in reference to the author of the Yellow Book and Shugden issue today. I should have been clearer.

  30. Hi Ron,

    Sorry to you – again i was not trying to imply you were simplistic. Evidently from your last posts you are not. I just don’t think the debate can be portrayed/viewed in simplistic terms.

    Yep – you are right – my beef is with the NKT and their involvement with this. My arguments are to do with politics, control, manipulation, coercion and are directed against the organisation and its ‘double speak,. I don’t have a problem with the validity of the teachings – just the way the dharma is taught and the way dharma centres are run. The bottom line is the NKT operate with a complete lack of duty of care towards its students and teachers. This may not be so for someone attending teachings but on other levels – particularly if one decides to live in a dharma centre and give one’s life to the tradition – it is so. I wish it were not.

  31. No problem, Captain. I was probably being a little overly cautious because I’ve seen way too many of these NKT or DS discussions devolve into nastiness and name calling While I don’t want to squash a lively debate, I just want folks to keep it respectful.

  32. Hi, Captain.

    Yes, I understand. There are problems. Many people have had bad experiences, and I feel sorry about that. Anyway, I can’t get into this discussion because it’s all too loaded. I too did have a bad experience, but resolved it. Anyway, the NKT in Australia is a lot less of a mess than in the UK and US. Keep well.

  33. at the risk of being called a dangerous pervert AGAIN I kinda think itz oddly strange and extremely typical (now therez sum oxymorons for ya) that all the passion seems to have drained outa this issue = not so fast grasshopper.

    with our finger on the trigger we wait for targets ~ but whose gun is it anywayz? time will tell ~ but what was the question?

  34. It seems quite clear that the DL is very keen to destroy the practice of DS, and has his people dealing with this. he is unable to offer any rational explanation for this action, he is unwilling to discuss it openly and is relying on his cartoon good guy image to let him get away with it, a bit like michael jackson did with all those children. This man has lived surrounded by people who never question his opinions, he is living in comfort while his people (who haven’t elected him)live in poverty. I think it’s right to question what he’s up to and reasonable to expect a response. obviously his own people face recriminations for disobeying him as can be clearly evidenced. I am very distressed by the whole situation but I’m willing to face it with an open mind and to put aside my preconceptions of how marvelous the DL is,

    unless you engage in this (DS) practice who or what DS is irrelevant because to you he is nothing, any Buddha/deity only exists as an aspect of the practitioners mind which develops through the practice, to think there is some independent “real” DS is nonsense, all Buddhist practices are methods to attain an enlightened mind, whoever we are we can never be in a position to ethically or morally determine the methods other people should use to overcome their limited samsaric condition to benefit others by becoming a Buddha. Once you have invested a lot of time and effort into a practice why should someone else try to deny you the chance to complete it. surely an truly enlightened being would rejoice in your efforts. I have lost faith in the Dalai Lama he is not a spiritual leader he is not interested in helping people to attain enlightenment he is a politician and a celebrity and he is obviously jealous of other Lamas who have maintained their purpose

  35. “to think there is some independent “real” DS is nonsense”

    eye like this ~ so then if we cross mikelJ with gorgB we get dalaiL?

    even if ya dont take sides ya still dont hafta sit on the fence cuz that REALLY hertz = unless . . . ? ? ? ?

    he who is without pride knows the peace of a tuff butt = takes a whippin an keeps on tickin = so then like the man sez – sit onit

  36. Hey Phelim – you don’t half get around. Seen this post before. You are not debating just cuttin ‘n’ pastin everywhere you can.

    You can run but you canee hide.

  37. At least I’ve got a point to make whatever I’ve said elsewhere remains relevant here, would you care to address the issue?

  38. yes eye wood thank you very much ~ the address of the issue should be c/o Santa Claus – North Pole. However since the Easter Bunny died for our sins it probably wont get there before the permanent departure of ice from said Pole sewit probably makes more cents to look at the issue from both sides.

    If little colored eggs and chocolate bunnies can replace the crucifixion of a saint then may be we’d be a voiding such a thing buy sluggin it out with the DL and DS. Me thinks them flaming swords wont be fittin under the xmas tree any time soon.

    so in the mean time (and I do mean mean time)whose red eye to git nailed? been there done that?

  39. “Though I am associated witht the NKT, I declined from engaging in any Shugden practice because I was uncomfortable with the controversy”

    If you’ve ever attended an NKT ceremony like Wish Fulfilling Jewel there will be Shugden worship within the service. It’s quite hard to avoid – it’s something I’ve struggled with – do I keep silent during these parts or what?

  40. kinda uncomfortable on the fence aint it? u shud re frain imo until you feel like it makes sense or doesnt – no knead to rush cuz you r building YER realashunship with holy being so no BODY kin tellya watts the right way or wrong way to do that ~ ya gotta follow the definitive spiritual guide at yer heart ~ stay open and avoid the pressure either way. if fowks is uncomfort able with yer poezishun den dats dare problem

  41. strange but true ~ is it rubbing salt in old wounds that had almost healed over, opening a new front in the lama warz, or just a plain shit fight? possibly all three and something more as well?

    if enlightened beings exist in the way we are taught then they can manifest in any form that is helpful. depending on the karma of those being helped it can look like a helping hand or a kick in the butt or ? ? ? ? (insert imagination here)

    if we were enlite end then we’d know. but then maybe eyez the only won knot. in that case it seems no one’s willing to fess up. so all thatz left as fur as eye kin see is just tryin hold the best intense shun as we shuffle stumble giggle wiggle glide slide or abide along the path eh?

    breathe mints anyone?

  42. Yes Marshmallows.

    It’s uncomfortable but my fence sitting has evolved into a fine art. I’m like those body modifiers – the ones that sleep on beds of nails and the like. There’s no pain anymore. And I now have one tough leathery arse.

  43. the leathery the arse the softer the heart

    like in enknee family me thinks they is sum that’s easier to hug den udders. i guess eye m just an ol’ shugdan hugger butt ya still gotta believe either way them flamin swords aint just for showin they also four blowin

  44. I have set up a website which includes an article about the background of the Western Shugden Society. In that article there is a witness quoted about of what happened in Sera Mey.

    http://info-buddhism.com/Western_Shugden_Society_unlocked.html

    The complete website is dedicated to offer a different pov on New Kadampa Tradition, Dorje Shugden Controversy and related issues, it aims to balance the one-sided information which NKT spreads.

    The monk Lobsang Jangchub, a witness of the events in Sera monastery (India), whishes “to counter the innacurate picture that the NKT is trying to paint of the situation” and states:

    “I resided at Sera for a total of about 20 months from 2003-2006. From 2004 onwards I had a basic enough understanding of Tibetan to know what was going on. My teacher was selected by HHDL to serve as Abbot and held that position for 10 years, partly because of his ability to handle the Shugden issue.

    At first, the Sera administration tried a “live and let live approach”, where the Shugden monks could do prayers in Pomra khangtsen but those of us who didn’t want to participate didn’t have to. And during the kangso pujas very few monks attended unless they were financially destitute and needed the money. I would say there were only about 90-120 monks who sincerely believed in the practice, out of a khangtsen of at least 400.

    Things came to a head because the Shugden supporters pushed the issue, handing out copies of the prayer to all monks during pujas and pressuring them to recite. Hanging large Shugden thangkhas in the khangtsen, and fining those Pomra monks who did not attend puja.

    Because of this situation, my teacher and the administration at Sera Mey felt they had no choice but to draft the oath for monks to sign. But this was after extensive discussion with HHDL and patiently waiting to see if the Shugden people would lighten up. After they tied up a visiting Dharamsala politician to a chair, the situation was sealed. Khen Rinpochey felt Shugden had to be controlled into the monastery, for the future of the lineage.

    I doubt any of the protestors have visited the monasteries of South India in the past ten years so really the information they are receiving is not first hand, but rather hearsay. It is simply an opportunity, I feel, for those who have grudges against His Holiness the Dalai Lama to try to damage his image.

    Leading up the oath circulated against Shugden at Sera Mey there were also several other important developments. One was that my teacher, then abbot of Sera Mey, received threats to his personal safety when he tried to bring the situation under control by having the monks at least not try to promote Shugden openly. This is well documented and HH Dalai Lama mentioned it himself at the Kalachakra I attended in 2004 in Toronto.

    The khangtsen was also being torn apart by the dispute because a new shrine hall was being built and the Shugden elements wanted a protector chapel in the back, and planned on ordering large statues. This further aggravated the situation. Once again, not from the side of the abbot and HHDL’s supporters, but from the Shugden side who kept trying to push the issue.

    The harmony of such a large monastery (Jey and Mey combined form Sera, which has about 5,000 monks) is essential and the Shugden situation was becoming out of control. Not only were threats being made but there were arguments between monks and a deep feeling of disharmony.

    In addition, some of those practising Shugden were even attending high tantra initiations with HHDL despite the fact that HH stated that to do so would harm the lineage, his life etc… In short, they were taking HHDL as vajra master but deciding not to follow his direction in practice.

    When I asked one monk whom I knew supported Shugden why he was attending an initiation HH was granting in India, he told me to shut up and mind my own business. I was later warned by friends to be less open about my disapproval for such matters because people had been previously physically harmed.

    So, that is pretty much all the information I have to share. Of course it is my experience and the experience of my teacher. But, because I stayed at Sera for a reasonable period and speak decent colloquial Tibetan, I feel I am better qualified to inform people about what is going on rather than NKT cadres who have never set foot in India. I doubt even GKG has been there in the past decade.”

    He original posted this at the New Kadampa Survvivors forum and allowed me to use his statement.

    I hope this helps to get a more differentiated and broader picture of the situation and what actually happened.

    Many Regards.

  45. IPTip?! Is this the same PTip Tenzin whose avowed agenda is to destroy the NKT and Dorje Shugden practice?!

    Rest of the rant has been deleted. Sorry, Dharmapal, but you have exceeded your allowance of contributor bashing for the day.

  46. If the Dalai Lama had some good reasons for banning the practice, it would still be an infringement of human rights and religious freedom, but would still be slightly more tolerable. However, his reasons are all politically motivated and/or superstitious and easy to refute. Please take a moment to see the other side of the argument (after all, the Dalai Lama does get most of the airtime!)

    1. Dorje Shugden practice is not “religion”, it is “spirit worship”

    To say that Dorje Shugden practice is “not religion” but “spirit worship” is plainly insulting to many peoples’ beliefs on different levels – not only to Buddhist practitioners of Dorje Shugden (who are not spirit worshippers) but also to other practitioners of other religions worldwide that may include spirit worship, including the ancient Bon tradition of Tibet.

    Most of the hundreds of thousands of people who rely upon Dorje Shugden are pure Buddhists in the tradition of Je Tsongkhapa, the founder of the Gelug tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. Others are pure Buddhists in the Sakya and Nyingma traditions of Tibetan Buddhism.

    Dorje Shugden is considered by them to be a Dharma Protector, an emanation of the Wisdom Buddha Manjushri, whose specific function is to protect the Buddhist or “Dharma” realizations or experiences in practitioners’ minds.

    The Dalai Lama travels the world expounding religious tolerance but doesn’t recognize the contradiction in his words and intolerant actions against fellow Tibetans in banning an ancient religious practice dear to their hearts.

    Many great Buddhist Teachers or Lamas, including the Dalai Lama’s own principal teacher Trijang Rinpoche, wrote long proofs showing how this Buddhist Deity was special and has a long history of protecting the Dharma, Buddha’s teachings. The fact that numerous past and current Lamas (including even the Fifth Dalai Lama!) have recognized Dorje Shugden as a Deity worthy of “worship” is enough recognition for their followers.

    Indeed, determining whether Dorje Shugden is a Buddha or not is beyond the scope of public policy. Nevertheless, many have chosen to follow the beliefs expounded by many high Lamas pre-dating and contemporary with the Dalai Lama who claimed and continue to claim that he is a Buddha. To insult these beliefs and these great Masters is not religious tolerance.

    [Also, on another level of irony, this accusation indeed appears a bit bizarre when one remembers that the only monastery/temple dedicated entirely to a spirit is Namgyal monastery. This is the Dalai Lama’s personal monastery, where Nechung abides, who has been declared a worldly spirit by the Dalai Lama himself, the Dalai Lama having also clearly stated that Nechung’s oracular advice is not always reliable. Nevertheless, Nechung is propitiated with big offerings and rituals daily at Namgyal monastery, and is invoked through various oracle mediums very often – some say more than ever. If we look at the completely and utterly contradictory statements Nechung has made about Dorje Shugden when advising the Dalai Lama to give up the practice, or the disastrously wrong prediction that Tibet would be free by the year 2000, one might indeed worry about spirit worship in seemingly unexpected places!]

    2. Dorje Shugden practice causes the degeneration of the pure Nalanda tradition

    The Dalai Lama claims that he follows the “Nalanda Tradition”, and this Deity somehow causes the degeneration of that, yet gives absolutely no reason or proof to back up this claim.

    Ironically, does the Dalai Lama happen to know who was the last Abbot of Nalanda? It was Shakya Shri Bhadra, who was the previous incarnation of Buton, who was the previous incarnation of Dulzin Dragpa Gyaltsen, who later appeared as Dorje Shugden. There is no way around this.
    (http://www.dechen.org/articles/html/shakyashri.html)

    The Dalai Lama is the one who is degenerating Buddhism by taking the view of the state oracles that Dorje Shugden is an evil spirit (see below) over the view of his own principal teacher or root Guru, Trijang Rinpoche. (In Buddhism, relying upon the spiritual guide is said to be “the root” of the Buddhist path to enlightenment.) Trijang Rinpoche always maintained that Dorje Shugden is an enlightened being and, according to close disciples, was “disappointed” when the Dalai Lama gave up the practice (the Dalai Lama waited for him to die before he instigated the ban).

    The major degeneration that is happening is the unprecedented conflict, which can easily be verified with accounts of the discrimination and disharmony in the Tibetan settlements and monasteries. The communists destroyed many monasteries, yet the tradition on the inside flourished quite well under the leadership of Trijang Rinpoche and Ling Rinpoche (the Dalai Lama’s teachers, both Dorje Shugden practitioners) and other great Lamas (many of them Dorje Shugden practitioners) in exile.

    What is happening now, through the will to mislead and incite disharmony with heavy-handed political actions, discrimination, and wrong information, is ruining many thousands of people’s lives. It has caused unprecedented problems in the monasteries in South India and continues to torment practitioners in Tibet, India and all over the world.

    3. The Fifth Dalai Lama considered Dorje Shugden to be an “evil spirit” (and the Thirteenth Dalai Lama banned the practice)

    It actually does not matter what view people hold of Dorje Shugden. It is still against the Indian Constitution, the Tibetan Constitution and the UN Declaration of Human Rights to prevent freedom of worship of any Deity. Belief is personal and an unassailable human right. People are free to worship a tree, if they so choose.

    But there are layers of irony in using the Fifth Dalai Lama as a reason for holding Dorje Shugden to be an evil spirit. In the interview, the Dalai Lama doesn’t even provide half of the story – namely that the Fifth Dalai Lama wrote in his own autobiography that the so called “evil spirit” arose from a highly respected Lama, Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen, who was murdered by the Fifth Dalai Lama’s administration; and that later in the Fifth Dalai Lama’s life he changed his mind about the nature of Dorje Shugden and wrote a prayer to him as an enlightened Protector. He also offered a temple in Lhasa to him called Trode Khangsar that is still there today, and created a statue with his own hands and placed it at a monastery called Phelgyeling (in Nepal, which is now in the process of being destroyed by the Dalai Lama’s followers).

    Elsewhere, the Dalai Lama claims that he is also following the tradition of the Thirteenth Dalai Lama in banning the practice. However, the Thirteenth Dalai Lama never banned the practice. After condemning Dorje Shugden, the Thirteenth Dalai Lama is said to have changed his mind on the issue and taken up the practice himself (Exploring New Religions, page 239).

    The biography of the Thirteenth Dalai Lama does not mention any ban of Dorje Shugden or his oracle. On the contrary, it mentions advice given by Dorje Shugden through the oracle at Tromo Dungkar Gonpa, which the Thirteenth Dalai Lama appreciated and followed (‘phags.pa ‘jig.rten dbang.phyug gi rnam.sprul rim.byon gyi ‘khrungs.rabs deb.ther nor.bu’i ‘phreng.ba.bzhugs.so, compiled by Phurchog Yongzin Thubten Jampa Tsultim Tenzin, Dharamsala, 1984, pp. 621, 630 and 648). Moreover, at no time did the Thirteenth Dalai Lama close Trode Khangsar in Lhasa, a residence of Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen that the 5th Dalai Lama had authorized to be turned into a special Protector temple for Dorje Shugden.

    The Thirteenth Dalai Lama had great faith in Tomo Geshe Rinpoche, a well-known Dorje Shugden practitioner, whom he called “a manifestation of Je Tsongkhapa.” According to page 620 and 649 of the Thirteenth Dalai Lama’s autobiography, Dorje Shugden came spontaneously through the Tromo Dungkar Gonpa Oracle in trance in front of Tomo Geshe Rinpoche and informed him that there was danger from foreign aggression toward Tibet. Dorje Shugden advised renovating two stupas, “the eastern and western one”. Upon receiving the message, the Thirteenth Dalai Lama immediately renovated the great golden stupa at Ganden and the Potala in Lhasa. The Potala is huge, so this was no small feat! In his autobiography, the Thirteenth Dalai Lama praised Tomo Geshe Rinpoche for having helped to avert a possible national crisis.

    In any event, even if the Dalai Lama were right on this (which he is not), the 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th Dalai Lamas did not ban the practice, so the preponderance of precedent is towards allowing the practice.

    4. Many past Lamas have considered Dorje Shugden to be an evil spirit

    The Dalai Lama makes a brief mention in this interview that reflects a number of claims suggesting that important Lamas over the last 370 years have warned against Dorje Shugden. These claims are all unsubstantiated and the evidence he has provided does not even circumstantially make this case against Dorje Shugden. The Fifth Dalai Lama’s example is given above. Phurchok Ngawang Jampa doesn’t say anything about Shugden or “Dholgyal” in his history of the four great monasteries. Trichen Ngawang Chokden never mentions Dholgyal specifically. All Yongzin Yeshi Gyaltsen mentions is a “new protector”; there is nothing about Shugden or “Dholgyal” in his work. Far from saying harm comes from Dorje Shugden, in his collected works Ngulchu Dharmabhadra answers a question about Dholgyal and Ganden Lha Gyema in which he confirms that Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen is Dorje Shugden, appearing as a wrathful Manjushri (a Wisdom Buddha). And so on.

    5. This has remained “very controversial worship” for more than 370 years

    The Dalai Lama has failed to provide anything to substantiate this claim. The controversy has only unfolded in the past 30 years after the Dalai Lama spoke out publicly against the practice of Dorje Shugden, even though it is a private practice. Instead of trying to resolve any dispute about this privately in any discussion with any person, including his own teachers, he took it into the public sector as a divisive issue.

    Dorje Shugden was even practiced by Nyingma adherents (who he supposedly attacks) for many generations in Gyasumdo, Nepal with no conflict of sects. This was described in anthropologist Stanley Mumford’s work “Himalayan Dialogue” in which he also observed the controversy unfolding in the late 1970’s: “Recently the Dalai Lama, as leader of the Tibetan people, has made a historic judgment. He has determined that the guardian deity called Shugs-ldan is not only too dangerous, but he also has promoted a vicious factional rivalry between the Gelugpa and Nyingmapa religious orders.” (pages 134-135. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1989).

    6. It “is not true” that the Dalai Lama banned Dorje Shugden practice

    These words in the Interview can only be described as lies: “So then it is my duty or moral responsibility to make clear, but whether listen or not, up to them. So some people criticize me, I banned that sort of spirit worship, that is not true.”

    It has not been “up to” anyone to listen or not – everyone has been forced to listen and to act, thousands and thousands of them against their wishes. And the Dalai Lama has very clearly banned the practice. See his own words on the subject over the past 30 years.

    Some examples:

    March 10th, 1996, during annual teachings at the Thekchen Choeling Temple in Dharamsala, the Dalai Lama imposes a ban on worshipping Dorje Shugden: “Whether outside of Tibet or within Tibet, this deity is discordant with our government and all our deities; this is serious in the context of the common cause of Tibet. It will be good if you comply (with what we are saying) without our having to resort to this last step. It will be the last resort if we have to knock on your doors if you do not follow this advice.”

    November 19th-21st, 1996, the Dalai Lama travels to South India to visit Tibetan monasteries at Mundgod, without the traditional request, which is unprecedented for a Dalai Lama. The Dorje Shugden Society holds off a peaceful demonstration in the hope of reconciliation with the Dalai Lama. They petition the Dalai Lama, but they are denied an audience. The Dalai Lama speaks in even harsher terms about the ban, and threatens, “You might feel that by publishing letters, pamphlets, etc. against this ban, the Dalai Lama will revoke the ban. This will never be the case. If you take a hard stand, I will tighten this ban still further.”

    The Tibetan Government in Exile and all exiled groups made policies to enforce his wishes. Petitions were sent to all Tibetan settlements requiring them to renounce Dorje Shugden in 1996.

    January 13th, 1999, to monks at Trijang Labrang (the home of his teacher, now deceased) in India who questioned the ban: “There will be no change in my stand. I will never revoke the ban. You are right. It will be like the Cultural Revolution. If those who do not accept the ban do not listen to my words, the situation will grow worse for them. You sit and watch. It will grow only worse for them.”

    In January 2008 he precipitated a vote through demagoguery to castigate anyone who did not sign a petition renouncing any loyalty to Dorje Shugden. As a result, many monks have been removed from the monasteries. Also a major hostel, Do Khangtsen, belonging to the monastic college of Ganden Shartse, has completely removed itself from the monastic establishment. This is unprecedented in the history of the Gelug tradition.

    There has been a great deal of segregation and persecution as a result of this ban and it will continue every day until the Dalai Lama stops his hypocrisy and practices what he preaches, namely freedom of worship.

    7. Dorje Shugden practice is sectarian

    Since the purpose of praying to Dorje Shugden is to increase love, compassion, and wisdom and to overcome our negative minds including hatred, attachment and ignorance, there can be no link with Dorje Shugden and religious discrimination. Tolerance and respect for all other traditions is highly promoted by Je Tsongkhapa and his emanation Dharma Protector Dorje Shugden.

    Sectarianism arises when one tradition imposes its views on other traditions. Shugden practitioners respect the freedom of others to practice according to their wishes. It is the Dalai Lama who is acting in a sectarian way by using the instruments of state power to enforce others to practice according to his view.

    Sectarianism can also be seen in the exclusive attitude of the Dalai Lama who allows anyone in the world, Buddhist or non-Buddhist, to attend his teachings except those who pray to Dorje Shugden.

    Gelugpa followers rely upon Dorje Shugden as a Dharma Protector of the Gelug sect or tradition of Je Tsongkhapa, but that doesn’t mean it is a sectarian practice. Dorje Shugden practitioners only wish for the freedom to follow their tradition in peace and there is no evidence that they have been intolerant to any other tradition. To say the practice is sectarian is again to slander many of the greatest upholders of the Buddhist teachings in the past three centuries, including the Dalai Lama’s own teacher Trijang Rinpoche.

    Numerous statements have been made by current Dorje Shugden practitioners to say that they welcome and respect all traditions and the Dalai Lama has not provided any evidence to indicate that this is not the case. According to the Dalai Lama’s translator in the 1990s, Helmut Gassner: “When during an Anti-Dorje Shugden information meeting in Switzerland the Dalai Lama’s Private Secretary sketched the picture of three hundred years of trouble with these Dorje Shugden people, someone asked him to mention some of the incidents that had occurred during that time. He was unable to come up with even one.”

    Also, the ritual aspects of Dorje Shugden practice are even taken from the Sakya tradition, where it was practiced widely until the 20th century. The Dalai Lama says that Dorje Shugden is against the Nyingma tradition, yet as mentioned above Dorje Shugden practice was also practiced by some Nyingma followers, who were also put under the pressure of the ban to give up the practice, as mentioned in Mumford’s book.

    The accusation that this practice is sectarian is certainly now inciting vastly more sectarian division and disharmony than any privately recited requests to Dorje Shugden to simply protect the tradition of Je Tsonghapa. The Dalai Lama’s ban and subsequent persecution have brought about the greatest schism within Tibetan Buddhist history – monasteries, communities and families are divided in a way that Mao’s Red Guards from the outside could never achieve.

    Being non-sectarian does not mean that you have to receive teachings from all other lineages – it means respecting all other lineages (without the sectarian actions of criticizing or discriminating against them) whilst being content with one’s own. In this respect, it is the Dalai Lama who is being sectarian and Dorje Shugden practitioners who are being non-sectarian.

    8. Dorje Shugden is hostile to the Dalai Lama’s government

    Another common reason not given in the Nottingham interview appears on a “Brief abstract concerning His Holiness’s the Dalai Lama’s advice regarding the practice of Dolgyal (Shugden)”, issued by the Office of Tibet, Tibet House, 1 Culworth Street, London NW8 7AF, May 2008

    “History shows, and His Holiness’s investigations have confirmed, that this spirit is hostile to the Dalai Lama’s government and has been since it was founded by the 5th Dalai Lama. Especially now that Tibetans are facing a struggle for survival, it is a mistake to worship something that is hostile to the Dalai Lama’s government. Therefore, it is in the interest of Tibetans as a whole to refrain from propitiating this hostile spirit.”

    That institution, i.e. the Ganden Podrang government, is defunct. It lacks any legal basis or official recognition at this point. It exists today only in the person of the Dalai Lama (and arguably his government in exile, which includes a large number of his own relatives). How can Dorje Shugden then harm that institution? The future of the Dalai Lama’s personal religious lineage is put in question only by the Dalai Lama himself, not Dorje Shugden.

    No explanation is given as to how Dorje Shugden harms the institution of the Dalai Lama, there is just the claim.

    If the Dalai Lama is supposed to be the political leader of all Tibetans, then his persecution of many thousands of his own people surely harms the institution more than the private prayers of individuals.

    Also, for the Dalai Lama’s demand for religious freedom to have greater credibility in the eyes of the Chinese, the Dalai Lama should himself protect religious freedom, not undermine it.

    The Dalai Lama’s “investigations” involve invoking Nechung through the human State Oracle, who has had the following things to say (perhaps some of these were given in a false trance? It is difficult to know.):

    1st answer of the State Oracle: “Dorje Shugden a powerful deity, only to be worshipped by beings with high realizations. However worshipping this deity would upset Goddess Palden Lhamo (a superior protecting deity, who does not have an oracle)”

    2nd answer of the State Oracle: “the deity is appropriate to be worshipped by an individual, but not by a group”

    3rd answer of the State Oracle: “Dorje Shugden is a deity, suitable to the others, but not to the successor of the 5th Dalai Lama and those working for the Gaden Phodrang Government established by the 5th Dalai Lama.”

    4th answer of the State Oracle: “Dorje Shugden is a spirit born out of a Kagyupa-monk who hated the Tibetan government, and not the incarnation of Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen”

    5th answer of the State Oracle: “Dorje Shugden is the spirit of Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen, whose Samaya bond to the 5th Dalai Lama was not good, thus it is harmful for this government.”

    6th answer of the State Oracle: “Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen was a good lama, whose works of composition are praiseworthy, therefore Dorje Shugden cannot be the spirit of such a master.”

    7th answer of the State Oracle: “Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen himself was a false Tulku, who came to be among the candidates for the 5th Dalai Lama and failed to be chosen, but through clever tactics of his mother on the first Panchen Lama Chokyi Gyaltsen, he was recognized as the fourth reincarnation of Panchen Sonam Dragpa (the teacher of 3rd Dalai Lama), but was then born as an evil, trouble-making spirit to harm the Tibetan government.”

    All in all, it is hard to see how the Dalai Lama is talking “frankly, straightforwardly and honestly”, let alone how he is being “sincere”. Once again we request him to lift the ban on this Buddhist tradition and allow everyone freedom of worship.

    Moreover, even if the Dalai Lama had said “they are free to choose” (which he has not, except to Western journalists), human rights legal scholars have said when assessing religious freedom that it is not enough for somebody to be ‘free to choose’ if they cannot exercise that choice freely without fear of political, social or economic penalities. Dorje Shugden practitioners face serious penalties for their choice, thus they cannot choose freely.

  47. Is this hell?

    Interminable discussions, complete with alternative websites, on a totally unresolvable issue, with two completely intractable and uncompromising points of view.

    And me in the middle.

    Sure seems like some kind of hell to me.

    What did I do to land me here?

  48. Ron –

    Yes, welcome to the new hell realm. Located just below the human realm and above the animal realm is the new hell realm of internet blogs and discussion forums. You have quite accurately described the suffering of that realm.

    I’m guessing the causes that may land you have to do with verbal non-virtuous actions such as idle chatter, divisive speech, etc. And, I don’t know about you, but lordy lordy lordy, I have certainly engaged in more than my share of those actions.

    However, for a hell realm, it is relatively comfy, and you are allowed breaks for playing Scrabulous and checking email. 🙂

  49. Hi Ron,

    You said,”Some superstitious fool wrote something called the Yellow Book and other superstitious fools believe it. As a result, thousands of Shugden practitioners are being persecuted, largely because the God-King of Superstitious Fools says they are engaging in a harmful practice.”

    Well, the “superstitious fool” who wrote the Yellow Book definitely had Trijang’s consent when he wrote the book. Afterall, many stories of that book came from Trijang.

    So who’s the bigger “fool” here, Trijang or his beloved student GKG who dared to doubt his root Guru’s words?

    Best

    Shaza
    Trijang Rinpoche and he endorsed

  50. Mate, I don’t actually know that much about the Yellow Book, except what I’ve read in secondary form. I’ve not actually read the book itself. Have you?

    In all honesty, I don’t think either of us really knows what context those stories were related by Trijang, if indeed they were.

    I know that GKG believes the stories are superstitious and am inclined to believe him because in my naive western way they look very superstitious and irrational to me. Remember, Trijang was deeply rooted in Tibet and all it’s pre-modern ways, but GKG is far more westernised.

    I’m kind of academic by nature and have seen this sort of thing played out in other cultures in the form of witchcraft accusations and the like. So I really don’t sympathise with people who think these stories are “real”. I think it’s irrational and kind of witless to believe everything Tibetan Buddhists are saying about Dorje Shugden practice.

    Of course, you can believe whateve you like. It doesn’t affect me personally.

  51. Hi Ron

    So Trijang claims that Shugden is Buddha and Vajradhara, do you think this is superstitious?

    And GKG believes it, do you think he’s not westernied enough to buy into that.

    The english translation of a large portion of that book is out there if you care to read at all.

    I don’t know if I believe everything in the Yellow Book just as I doubt anything passed down from Trijang, including the legitimacy of the whole Shugden practice that is also practiced in NKT.

    So how do you draw the line what and what not to believe? Or you just believe whatever is convenient?

    It’s interesting you made a comparison to the witchcraft accusations. Differece being Trijang and his teacher Pabongkha were ACTUALLY performing the sectarian “witchcraft” (to borrow your analogy) with Shugden. Whether it’s as effective as they claim in the Yellow Book is another matter.

    I think you half suspected what context the stories were told. I will give you a quote to make it clearer.

    ‘In his interlinear notes on Phabongkha’s commentary for the Sok Té of this protector, Trijang wrote,

    “This protector of the doctrine is extremely important for holding Tsongkhapa’s tradition without mixing and corrupting it with confusions due to the great violence and the speed of the force of his actions, which fall like lightning to punish violently all those beings who have wronged the Yellow Hat Tradition, whether they are high or low. This protector is also particularly significant with respect to the fact that many from our own side, monks or lay people, high or low, are not content with Tsongkhapa’s tradition, which is like pure gold, and have mixed and corrupted this tradition with the mistaken views and practices from other schools, which are tenet systems that are reputed to be incredibly profound and amazingly fast but are in reality mistakes among mistakes, faulty, dangerous and misleading paths. In regard to this situation, this protector of the doctrine, this witness, manifests his own form or a variety of unbearable manifestations of terrifying and frightening wrathful and fierce appearances. Due to that, a variety of events, some of them having happened or happening, some of which have been heard or seen, seem to have taken place: some people become unhinged and mad, some have a heart attack and suddenly die, some see through a variety of inauspicious signs their wealth, accumulated possessions and descendants disappear without leaving any trace, like a pond whose feeding river has ceased, whereas some find it difficult to achieve anything in successive lifetimes” ‘

    I hope you will be driven by your curious mind to further investigate the events so we may know more about what really happened and how the Shugden revival came about in the last 80 years.

    I guess the motivation to stop this practice is obvious to see. Without disrepect, I think the Dalai Lama was trying to denounce a practice that the 13th Dalai Lama (the previous tulku) failed to control under his nose.

    Best

    Shaza

  52. Hi Shaza

    You’ve made some good points. Thanks for your polite and considered reply.

    When I was studying witchcraft accusations in Africa, it was clear there were people actually doing practices that were considered witchcraft. Not always, but often, those conflicts and accusations emerged on actual evidence of so-called “bad” or “harmful” practices. Does that mean they were really witches?

    No. Certainly few western academics would accept that. (Nonethat I’ve met, anyway).

    Did both sides believe in the power of those practices?

    It appears so, yes. Often the so-called witches believed they were not harmful practices though.

    If you wish, I will try source information on this for you but it will take time as I’m quite busy at the moment and I left university many years ago. However, I wrote my History Honours thesis on it and I can probably still find references for you.

    Anyway, in this light, you can see the clear parallell between these types of incidents and what’s happening in India currently regarding Dorje Shugden. I’d like to ask you to keep an open mind too and look at this from beyond a strictly religious mindset.

    Where to draw the line on what to believe or not. This is indeed the question. It’s a very good one, and a tricky line to draw.

    I don’t believe that Shugden is a buddha, nor do I really believe he’s a worldly spirit. I don’t believe buddhas exist inherently. I’ve tempered my practice with a good dose of Western common sense.

    In many ways, I draw the line on what is clearly non-beneficial for me to believe. I really do view much of Tibetan Buddhism as mere ornament, and for me dharma protectors probably fall in that category too. They have a function in instilling faith and helping one maintain one’s practice, but ultimately I think they’re a non-essential element in my practice.

    I’ve come to think the Dalai Lama’s intent is largely honourable on this issue, but the consequences have been bad, and he doesn’t even appear willing to acknowledge that. And the persecutions seem to continue. So there’s a real problem.

    On the other side of the coin, GKG and other Shugden practitioners have illustrated a strong attachment to that one particular practice. And I think more pragmatic practitioners might have let the issue go a little.

    Ultimately, I think the Dalai Lama has taken a hardline approach and it is causing people to suffer, whether this practice is undesirable in Buddhist terms or not. He uses the kalama sutta as his defence for doing this, but the kalama sutta doesn’t allow one to make decisions on behalf of others, does it?

    So for me, the issue with the Dalai Lama is that he’s tried to force other people to adopt his views. I don’t think that’s acceptable.

    And looking at the results its produced, it’s clearly not particularly wise either.

    I personally don’t practice Dorje Shugden. I don’t think it’s an inherently bad practice. Regardless, I think it would have been better to allow people to make the choice of discontinuing that practice without trying to compel them to do it.

    Regards
    Ron

  53. Hi Ron,

    Thanks for your thorough reply. I think I understand your position better now.

    It’s actually very wise to “bracket” whatever supernatural experiences people might claim to have. As practitioners we do need to be smart. So I have no problem with that.

    However, the forces of spirits are very real in the world of Tibetan Buddhism (probably less so in Theravada Buddhism which I don’t know much about) and I suppose there’s hardly any way around the issue if one’s truly a tantric practitioner. So it’s not surprising why Zen was so popular in the West and remains so because it’s largely sutric and not much sadhana practices are involved.

    It also explains the popularity of some GKG’s books partly because the Lamrim approach is quite unparalleled in other sutric tradition and epitomes the best of what Tibetan Buddhism has to offer.

    But then in order to do tantra right, discretion is advised. And sorry to say the current state of Shugden veneration is nothing but Satan worship with half-baked understanding of emptiness where Shugden practitioners can hide whenever they are accused of propitiating a bad spirit.

    So you can imagine the “since things are empty of inherent existence, therefore it’s OK to be wishy-washy” kind of argument doesn’t sit well with me.

    The Shugden “witchcraft” was not only viewed by others as harmful but was MEANT to be harmful. In that quote, you can tell Trijang thought that maintaining the GREATER GOOD of the Gelug justifies using the Shugden means of harming other sentient beings. As long as the Shugden worship is still around and viewed as legitimate, there’s no guaranteed that some self-professed Buddhists will take up Trijang’s cause in the name of Shugden.

    In the end, how far GKG is going to exercise his poetic license to trim the Shugden worship and paint a rosy picture of him is really up to GKG and his NKTers. I just hope NKT was more upfront about it before other well-intentioned students read his books over a nice cup of NKT cappuccino, got all excited about Buddhism and go through that same old cycle of betrayal and disappointment again.

    As for the 14th Dalai Lama, it was his responsibility to point out the faults and then rein in the Shugden worship, something that the 13th tried but failed. But then in hindsight, the Great 13th had bigger things to worry about in Tibet, after maneuvering btw the interests of Britain, Russia and the pre/post Imperial China.

    In the same manner, as I have said elsewhere, I don’t think it would be alright for the Pope to turn a blind eye if Roman Catholics openly worship Lucifer under his nose.

    Yes. I totally agree with you that we should all exercise restraint in this matter. But I also think there’s some urgency in the matter from a religious/political point of view (vs a purely spiritual arena, if there’s one at all). If the current Dalai Lama failed to stop a sectarian spirit and its practice that is abhorred by all other sects, what kind of repercussions are we expecting in long run after he passed away? He surely cannot say “don’t worry, Shugden’s not gonna harm you, it’s all in your head you know and he lacks inherent existence”.

    I agree with Georges Dreyfus when he said the Dalai Lama and the institution could not be seen as fair by other sects if he continues to allow a sectarian practice run wild. This is the more plausible political reason behind his decision.

    Other columnists who think that the Dalai Lama was up to some conspiracy and wants to “unite” and “merge” all traditions are simply regurgitating the propaganda churned out by the pro-shugden supporters. And why not? Bashing a “power-hungry” Nobel Prize Laureate is certainly a better news angle than his handshaking with country leaders.

    When I objected to their stance, one columnist retorted and told me it’s simply too difficult for him to decide when there are so many claims and counter-claims from both camps. So he just filled in the blanks himself for lack of a better explanation. Though I sympathized with his plight for meeting a deadline, I didn’t agree. So you see, my voice is just a blip on the radar compared to the establishment of Shugden websites, books, hotels and cafes etc etc.

    In all due respect, I think the Dalai Lama has tried very hard to advice against the practice in a proper manner, you know the story. When he evoked the Kalama Sutta, he was probably trying to ease the worries of those torn btw two authorities and might fear they have done something wrong in giving up the Shugden practice. Just a wild guess. That being said, he did have authority over the monasteries overseen by the Ganden Podrang.

    On another note, it’s possible that the Dharsa-clique or Dalai’s over-zealous supporters are actually carrying out his “religious edict” in a heavy-handed way as the rumors suggest. But then I like reports and researches where I can check my sources. And I welcome any neutral investigative reports where sources could be verified. Until then, there isn’t much I am capable to say about who did what to whom and who killed whom etc. Otherwise the mudslinging just goes on indefinitely.

    Best

    Shaza

  54. mudslingin lotus blossoms maybe? ~ i dunno either Shaza

    “it’s possible that the Dharsa-clique or Dalai’s over-zealous supporters are actually carrying out his “religious edict” in a heavy-handed way as the rumors suggest”

    they iz mudslingin either way ainit?

    personally i like to horde my mud and save it up fur spacial ok shuns.

  55. “for a hell realm, it is relatively comfy, and you are allowed breaks for playing Scrabulous and checking email.”

    Holy Jesus Mary and Joseph ~ how’d die missout on this detail ~ is it break time yet?

  56. Hi Shaza

    I think for us to arrive at some kind of common ground we’d need to work on some fundamental differences of opinion.

    The satan worship comment, for instance. I’ve heard two versions about the nature of Shugden, and to be frank neither are verifiable to my mind (which is a very western mind, admittedly and doesn’t accept a number of Tibetan concepts uncritically). So I don’t really think Shugden worship is necessarily demon worship. Neither is the evidence that shows him to be a buddha any more compelling to me. I have obviously read comments from lamas of various traditions saying Shugden practice is harmful but again find this not easy to accept as the basis for this opinion seems steeped in various mythologies.

    I have read up on lots of mythologies. Actually I’ve studied some in detail. And this set of myths doesn’t strike me as any more concrete than any of the others I know – Babylonian, Egyptian, Greek, African, Norse, etc. Yes, I take your point on Tantric practice, but think there’s still scope for me to critique elements of Tibetan belief selectively from a more rational perspective. And it would be a pity if we were all compelled to take a stance on something quite unacceptable simply because the guru deemed it so. This applies to the Dalai Lama as much as it does to Kelsang Gyatso.

    On the intent of Shugden worship being harmful, well, this is obviously the crux of the problem. It seems the vast number of Shugdenites today do not believe that the intent of Shugden worship is harmful. They believe it is to protect the purity of their lineage. That is not sectarian. That doesn’t denigrate other sects. Most of these worshippers are not sectarian – not in the West, not in Tibet, and not in India. Now, perhaps there was a sectarian motive when Pabongka established the practice way back, but there was no rampant sectarianism from DS supporters when the Dalai Lama decided to start cracking down on the practice, and hadn’t been for decades. In fact, the Dalai Lama had to do extensive scholarly research to even uncover the so-call “harmful” side of Dorje Shugden. For most of his life he wasn’t even aware of it.

    So what we have here is the Dalai Lama discovering a sectarian element to the practice in the past and then banning it. In practical terms, Dorje Shugden practitioners were not engaging in sectarian behaviour. It’s the Dalai Lama’s ban and the subsequent conflict created by his position that has led to all the furore around this issue.

    In other words, it’s the Dalai Lama who started this fight, not Shugdenites.

    You mention the political reasons for the move by the Dalai Lama. It is good to see that you agree with the demonstrators that the main motive is political. For me, the Dalai Lama has no right to sacrifice the rights of a people who conduct a practice he doesn’t like simply to gain the political approval of other Tibetans. Yeah, I sympathise – he has a kind of difficult task in uniting Tibetans behind one cause. But I’m not inclined to agree that the end justifies the means, and I’m disappointed that a man like the Dalai Lama seems to resort to the same sort of political expedience that politicians like George Bush resort to. It seems he’s more the adept politician and less the compassionate monk than I’d like to have believed.

    Finally, there is just too much evidence on inequities in Dharamsala to suggest that it’s all propaganda. Two points are worth making 1) If the Dalai Lama and supporters in the West genuinely cared about the truth and the possible suffering of people in India, it would seem better to investigate it honestly rather than just deny its existence and claim to wait for someone they regard as a neutral source to make a report on it; and 2) if in fact over-zealous supporters of the Dalai Lama are really to blame, surely a compassionate leader would urge restraint instead of simply denying there was a problem and reiterating that it was a harmful practice (the very statement that is leading to this over-zealous action from his supporters in the first place).

    I believe whatever actions are being undertaken in Dharamsala must have at least the tacit support of the Dalai Lama. Given the Dalai Lama’s authority and influence, it’s the only conclusion that makes any sense.

    To conclude, he seems to genuinely believe its his moral duty to wipe out what he regards as a harmful practice. In the process, he is harming innocent people who believe the practice is not harmful but who can’t give it up because of their commitment to their lineage gurus.

    To reiterate, I don’t believe the practice is harmful. So you and I are simply never going to come to the same conclusions on this.

  57. Hi Ron,

    Perhaps I wasn’t explaining myself clear enough.

    There’s a widespread tendency to blame the Dalai Lama for stirring up the event after he denounced the practice of Shugden in the 70’s (many would like to believe that it was in the mid-90’s).

    But no, the controversy went way back before the current Dalai Lama was even born. That’s why I have twice mentioned the futile attempt of the 13th Dalai Lama to stop this practice. I would even go further to say that the current Dalai Lama should have condemned the Shugden practice earlier before the practice gained such a wide popularity among the upper echelon of the Gelug order. In other words, my position is very clear. Even if the Dalai Lama retracted his indictment, I would still object to the Shugden worship as heretic.

    The Dalai Lama probably did not need to dig into any history books to see Shugden is sectarian because the Life-Entrustment initiation (Sok Te) that he refused to take from Trijang was indeed sectarian for all to see, for instance.

    However, GKG did receive this Sok Te from Zong Rinpoche and if GKG is keeping his samayas at all, he’ll still be practicing it today whether his NKTers know it or not. In this practice, a student has to make a pledge that he could not learn anything from other schools even as to touch a single Nyingma text. It’s a secret practice, only conferred on three people at a time. But then I don’t know if GKG has ever transmitted it. Maybe you can ask around.

    Yet, it’s obvious that GKG lied when he said Shugden was not sectarian while clearly knew that he was. So it’s a catch-22 for GKG. If he insists Shugden is not sectarian, he openly broke with his lineage gurus(ie Pabongkha and Trijang) he so often relied on, then there is little legitimacy and lineage blessing in what he teaches. In that case, one might as well go to a zendo and do some sitting meditation instead.

    I don’t know what kind of verifiable direct evidence to prove that Shugden is a demon. I certainly cannot because I do not have any direct experience with him except relying on the advices of other spiritual authorities. Even if I told you Shugden gave me a headache, how are you going to know if it’s not my hallucination?

    But if your line of argument is permitted, I think the Pope has a problem condemning Lucifer worship or stop Catholics from worshipping him because I doubt if he could ever prove that Lucifer gave him a headache.

    So spiritual authority aside, we could appeal to circumstantial evidence like the written records and the like. That’s what I was trying to do all along. And what better evidence than to use Pabongkha’s and Trijang’s own words to prove the point?

    You can snap back by saying that most Shugdenites are not sectarian and do not believe Shugden is harmful and therefore he’s not harmful.

    This I agree to a certain degree because I have never said that ALL DS practitioners are sectarian, I was just saying they are worshipping a sectarian spirit. Most Shugdenites are duped into trusting the benign nature of Shugden because little is known about his past and some smokescreen has been set up to deceive others about his true nature.

    Yes, you are probably right that there’s no “rampant” sectarianism among DS practitioners but I think there are enough to warrant remedy. (It kinda makes me think of the politics of gun-control)

    The fact is Shugden MEANT harm for Pabongkha and Trijang. And supposed some DS people in their lineage don’t think so, who are we to trust and who’s the authority on Shugden, the one who created the practice or the ones practicing them?

    The fact that you do not believe Shugden is Buddha put you way ahead of many Shugdenites. Through taking refuge in Shugden, one continues to break one’s refuge vows. And it’s a good enough reason to look at it as anti-Buddhist practice even though you don’t believe it is harmful. And no one ever elevated the status of Shugden to the Buddha’s status before Pabongkha.

    In addition, I also said there’s a political dimension of Dalai’s denunciation of Shugden. But if you have read me carefully, I did not believe it was Dalai’s intention to unite the Tibetans by this affirmative action. In my view, he was rather protecting the Gelug reputation by weeding out this spirit worship. And he needs to be firm so those who think they “can’t give it up because of their commitment to their lineage gurus” can drop the practice immediately if they have any trust in the Dalai Lama’s spiritual authority.

    About your last point, I don’t have much to add except I am just a lazy coach-potato who is trying to strike a balance in the debate. If I told you I had some breaking news report from India about this and that, you probably won’t bother to read given my less than neutral position, so again I’ll leave that issue to those who are more capable and I am sure various PR machines are already pitching their stories to the news media this very moment so…

    In the end, I think we do have alot in common. If I am in your shoes I will probably think differently be more sympathetic to the Shugdenites and if you have read what I have, you will probably draw a different conclusion etc etc.

    Best

    Shaza

  58. Shazza,

    [In this practice, a student has to make a pledge that he could not learn anything from other schools even as to touch a single Nyingma text. It’s a secret practice, only conferred on three people at a time. But then I don’t know if GKG has ever transmitted it. Maybe you can ask around.]

    GKG does not confer this practice now, even if he did in the past. He made statement to this effect at the spring festival, saying, I paraphrase, ‘it is not appropriate any more’.

    [Yet, it’s obvious that GKG lied when he said Shugden was not sectarian while clearly knew that he was.]

    Even if it was so, that you have a commitment not to learn anything from other schools even as to touch a single Nyingma text, this does not make it sectarian.

    Non-sectarian means to accept that others can believe or practice their own sect without persecution.

    Sectarian means – ‘only that what I do is right, and that what you do is wrong’.

    If I had a commitment only to read GKG books (which I haven’t and is what many NKT haters use to incorrectly accuse the NKT of) then I would keep that commitment.

    That doesn’t mean that I should say everyone else should only read GKG books and if they don’t they are wrong!!

    Non – sectarian means what I do us right for me and what you do is right for you.

    As a non sectarian I would fight (yes and demonstrate) for your right to practice what is right for you. That does not mean that I have to practice what you practice or you have to practice what I practice.

    If you want to practice witchcraft then I say you have the right to do that, the corollary of course, and as a Buddhist, is that you should do no harm.

    So the crux of the argument is whether or not DS practice is harmful. DS practitioners do not wish harm on anyone especially the DL.

    Below is part of the DS Sadhanna

    ‘Beings throughout this great earth are engaged in different actions
    Of Dharma, non-Dharma, happiness, suffering, cause and effect;
    Through your skilful deeds of preventing and nurturing,
    Please lead all beings into the good path to ultimate happiness’.

    DS practice has no intention to harm anyone, only to harm delusions, there are no faulty people, but there are people with delusions, gather all blame into one – delusions – remove the delusions and you are left with a pure being.

    Cheyenne

  59. Shazza

    From Music Delighting the Ocean Of Protectors

    by Kyabje Trijang Dorjechang

    Root Guru of most Gelugpa Lamas alive today, including the Dalai Lama, who relied upon Dorje Shugden as his Protector until his death

    “Some, who have fallen under the influence of the demon of the partisanship, think and say that this supreme Deity, the great emanated Dharmapala, is no different than an ordinary gyalpo or tsen spirit who has an inferior form as a result of being a monk or lay person who died with bad karma. Leave aside relying upon him as a Protector, they even deride others who do so. There are some, indeed, who echo such claims knowing nothing about it.

    “Yet all this talk is nothing but babbling speculation. Why? Because this great guardian of the teachings is well known to be the precious supreme emanation from Drepung monastery’supper house, Dragpa Gyaltsen, arising in a wrathful aspect. The proof is unmistaken. Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen, as is taught in the lineage, was the final birth in a reincarnation lineage that included the Mahasiddha Birwawa, the great Kashmiri Pandit Shakya Shri, the omniscient Buton, Duldzin Dragpa Gyaltsen, Panchen Sonam Dragpa, and so forth; this is proven by valid scriptural quotation and reasoning. These great beings, from a definitive point of view, were already fully enlightened, and even to common appearances, every one of them was a holy being that attained high states of realization. What worse karma could there be than denying this and asserting that he was born in the preta (spirit) realm?

    ‘Therefore, for holy beings it is not at all far-fetched that they might show themselves in a wrathful form out of the power of compassion and prayer for the sake of a special purpose, and it should be recognized that they are emanations of Buddha’s inconceivable secret qualities. But for them to take birth as a sky-wandering preta through the force of negative throwing karma like an ordinary preta would be utterly impossible. To say it were possible would be to deny the validity of the natural law of cause and effect. Why? From the definitive point of view those holy beings are fully enlightened. Moreover, even from the common point of view they attained high states of realization in reliance upon guarding their moral disciplines as they would their eyes, from youth onwards throughout their lives. To say that a causal factor of pure ethical discipline could result in rebirth in a lower realm of existence would be to assert that actions performed could be wasted; that one could experience the results of actions not performed by oneself; and that such scriptural statements as “From generosity, wealth, from ethics, happiness, are invalid and so forth. As a consequence, one would be turning ones back on Buddha’s teachings as a whole.

    “Furthermore, from the definitive point of view, that these holy beings were already fully enlightened innumerable ages ago, is clear if one examines the accounts of their lives, and if one were to say that a fully enlightened being could take birth as an ordinary gyalpo or tsen spirit, then one would be asserting that degeneration is possible from the state of full enlightenment or that someone could be both fully enlightened and an ordinary preta at the same time! Or else, one would have to say that the accounts of those great beings lives are worthless. A mountain of absurd consequences, previously non-existent distorted ideas, would have to be accepted.”

    See the complete text of Music Delighting the Ocean Of Protectors in English or Tibetan.

    Cheyenne

  60. Thanks Shaza

    Look, I will try to keep my position moderate on this.

    Let’s say another reason I don’t practice Shugden is that I’ve taken refuge in the three jewels. Indeed, I took refuge at an FPMT centre where I promised explicitly not to take refuge in anything that might be a worldly spirit, even if people told me it was a buddha (a direct inference to Shugden, no doubt). So if in doubt I’m committed to taking the safe option.

    I’m already aware of the history of Shugden as it relates to the 13th Dalai Lama and his attempts to curb Pabongka. And I have heard about the secret life entrustment (nothing is that secret anymore, I guess).

    But as you say, it’s never been a mass initiation. It’s only given to a select few who’ve already demonstrated their commitment to that particular lineage. They are already with that tradition – in fact, among its committed senior practitioners. So I guess I liken it to something like the masons or somesuch where additional loyalty to the group is affirmed at the most senior levels. It’s a bit cultish perhaps. But it’s not deeply sectarian in that’s it’s not encouraging the Gelugpa masses to take up arms, and not suggesting ordinary gelugs can’t cross-fertilise.

    Of course, the Dalai Lama in his role was right to reject that Life Entrustment. After all, he has to represent everybody. Certainly, it was not appropriate for someone with his responsibilities and commitments.

    You may be right that his stance on Shugden is an attempt to protect the Gelugpa rather than to destroy it. I don’t know. It’s an angle I hadn’t considered. However, I’m not sure he’s going to succeed. Many are probably practicing Shugden in secret, and will come out of the closet when he leaves the scene.

    Also, I’m not sure it’s a position he needed to take.

    And right now it seems it’s mostly the rank and file monks and the common shugdenites in the street that are bearing the brunt.

    Finally, as to GKG not being able to touch other teachings, well – I think those teachings are quite well incorporated into the lineage already – from Mahamudra to Vajrayogini, many of the practices came from other schools but are now firmly a part of the lineage and are now Gelugpa teachings. So it’s not something I think he really has to worry about. I think he’s pretty firmly committed to sticking to those particular teachings and they do represent a complete path. There is no need to look for teachings elsewhere.

    Regards
    Ron

  61. supposin the pope sez “saint francis is an evil spirit so frank is OUT!” ~ due ya think the frank siskins wood go down without a wimper?

    most fowks git a mite jumpy (and I do mean ‘mite’) ifin anywonz gonna be messin wit dere spear-itchewl guide.

    once ya bond wit a wholey bean itz purty tuff to tossem overboard even if they nailem to a cross.

  62. that’s samsara ..mr mellow

    and the longer Shugden is allowed to stay there, the more he’ll look like our St. Francis..

    so what do you think.. cut a deal with him?

  63. Hi Cheyenne

    Thx for your feedback.

    [GKG does not confer this practice now, even if he did in the past. He made statement to this effect at the spring festival, saying, I paraphrase, ‘it is not appropriate any more’.]

    Could you kindly explain what was the context/story when he said this at the festival? And why?

    So did he abandon the practice personlly or he simply promised not to give the initiation?

    All in all, I am pleasantly surprised at GKG’s sudden candidness over the issue. But in my opinion, what he needs to do is to drop the whole Shugden franchise in NKT altogether instead of renovating it in a piecemeal fashion.

    [Even if it was so, that you have a commitment not to learn anything from other schools even as to touch a single Nyingma text, this does not make it sectarian. ]

    Sorry, it does. Especially when the punishment is misfortune or even death as it is in Sok Te.

    [Sectarian means – ‘only that what I do is right, and that what you do is wrong’.]

    I agree. This could be one of the motivation behind the sectarian behaviours as it was the case with Pabongkha and Trijang when they condemned the Nyingma practices.

    [If I had a commitment only to read GKG books (which I haven’t and is what many NKT haters use to incorrectly accuse the NKT of) then I would keep that commitment.
    That doesn’t mean that I should say everyone else should only read GKG books and if they don’t they are wrong!! ]

    Why would one need a COMMITMENT to read GKG’s books at all?

    And what motivates one to limit one’s options reading ONLY those books in the first place?

    I read quite a few of his books and never felt compelled to make a commitment out of it.

    It’s just baffling.

    That being said. I guess it’s important to differtiate between Tantric commitments and other kinds of “commitments” like the new year resolution to lose weight, for example.

    [Non-sectarian means to accept that others can believe or practice their own sect without persecution. ]

    But being non-sectarian doesn’t mean that one can call Lucifer worshippers Catholics.

    [Non – sectarian means what I do us right for me and what you do is right for you.]

    Not exactly.

    Being non-sectarian does not have all these “me and you” constraints.

    The Six Great Mahasiddhas of Gelug (in addition to Tshongkhapa) all learned from various different schools in their old vibrant non-sectarian ways. They had the OPTION to learn whatever benefitted them w/o being punished.

    Those bound by the tantric commitments to stick ONLY with some Gelug teachings have no such options.

    [As a non sectarian I would fight (yes and demonstrate) for your right to practice what is right for you. That does not mean that I have to practice what you practice or you have to practice what I practice. ]

    It’s perfectly OK to stick with one single practice but it’s a totally different matter to say that one is NOT ALLOWED to learn teachings from other schools or living under the fear of being ostracized for doing so. Again, it’s a matter of choice or the lack of it that counts here.

    It’s like saying “you are perfectly free to leave the room, but I’ll shoot you if you do.” What kind of freedom is that?

    [If you want to practice witchcraft then I say you have the right to do that, the corollary of course, and as a Buddhist, is that you should do no harm. So the crux of the argument is whether or not DS practice is harmful. DS practitioners do not wish harm on anyone especially the DL. ]

    Yes, the point of contention is whether or not DS is harmful. But I would also like to add that, as I have emphasized on and on, is that the DS practice is also heretic. So if you ask me whether it’s OK to practice “witchcraft” (if you agree what DS is all about) as if it is Buddhism, then my answer is no, it’s not OK. One is free to practice witchcraft but stop calling oneself a Buddhist.

    Taking refuge in a spirit has no place in Buddhism and you break your vows and stop being a Buddhist. The fact that people is still confused over this issue means more affirmative action is required.

    [Below is part of the DS Sadhanna ….]

    We could easily replace Lucifer’s name with DS and asked him to “lead all beings into the good path to ultimate happiness”.

    Does it make it right? I don’t think either Tantra or Sutra ever warrant that.

    And Trijang’s attempt to justify Shugden’s legitimacy in “Music Delighting the Ocean Of Protectors” simply falls apart.

    In that little book, Trijang fails to make a case for Shugden’s legitimacy other than claiming that Shugden IS Buddha or Vajradhara.

    He even tried to enlist the help Sakya masters to “demonstrate” that Shugden is an enlightened being which he completely fails.

    Ask any Sakya scholars today, they will tell you it’s an outright insult to say any of their Sakya masters like Virupa or Sakya Pandita reincarnated as Shugden or were emanated by the Shugden Vajradhara.

    No, Shugden has always been a worldly spirit in the history of Sakyas until the holy company of Pabongkha-Trijang changed their mind. In other words, the ordinary/supreme dichotomy of the Shugden was a recent fabrication by Pabongkha, and never once existed in the Sakyas.

    It’s also the point of contention between the 13th Dalai Lama and Pabongkha because before Pabongkha, Shugden was nothing more than a minor spirit in the Gelug pantheon after its migration from Sakya.

    Best

    Shaza

  64. Hi Ron

    Point taken.

    [You may be right that his stance on Shugden is an attempt to protect the Gelugpa rather than to destroy it. I don’t know. It’s an angle I hadn’t considered. However, I’m not sure he’s going to succeed. Many are probably practicing Shugden in secret, and will come out of the closet when he leaves the scene.
    Also, I’m not sure it’s a position he needed to take.]

    I do share your misgivings about how it’s gonna unfold and I am sure many Shugdenites are gonna practice in secret despite all that…

    but then it was exactly because of Dalai’s stance that many started to learn about the controversy and made it possible for people to take what you call a “safe option” at all. People are also starting to learn that there are indeed traditional teachings of Tsongkhapa that are not revised by Pabongkha.

    Whether GKG could touch other teachings is really his problem. I don’t have much to say with his allegiance to Pabongkha’s curriculum whether you call that true Gelug teachings. All I was just trying to demonstrate is his possible duplicity over the issue ie. he knew Shugden was sectarian all along while feigning ignorance for so many years.

    And looking at Cheyenne’s comment earlier, why does GKG thinks it’s “no longer appropriate” to teach (or practice?) Sok Te when it was perfectly OK before?

    Is he trying to “come clean” now so Shugden will not face further charges or possible imprisonment?

    It’s not my intention to ridicule GKG. I am just trying to show that the Shugden worship has a huge credibility problem that GKG is scrambling to salvage.

    Best

    Shaza

  65. Hi Shaza

    I will say in all honesty that I truly believe GKG is entirely convinced that Shugden is a buddha. On the nature of Shugden’s sectarianism, he has expressed the view that the Yellow Book is superstitious nonsense.

    I suspect that he might now deem the Life Entrustment initiation inappropriate because he now lives in the West – a social context completely different from the one in which all these tensions and issues developed. The values of his new world are entirely different, and perhaps his own values have changed as a consequence. Old Tibet is gone and so has its political conflicts, most of its sectarian rivalries and much of its medieval world view. For all those reasons, he may now think a Life Entrustment is no longer needed or desirable.

    It’s a whole new world, after all.

    I think this is more likely than the implausible possibility that he’s suddenly woken up to the real nature of Shugden.

    I think the fact that he’s lent his voice and his energy to renewed demonstrations on the Shugden issue shows his conviction on this is as strong as ever.

  66. Hi Ron,

    [I think this is more likely than the implausible possibility that he’s suddenly woken up to the real nature of Shugden.]

    So you agree GKG knew about the sectarian nature of Shugden all along then?

    I am sure he wanted to have it both ways. But now he looks all set to break with Trijang’s teachings (eg Yellow Book + Sok Te) in order to establish his Shugden cult on a more “modern” footing.

    Shugden IS sectarian. It really doesn’t matter whether GKG himself is sectarian or not and whether he himself really “believes” Shugden is sectarian or not.

    But then I suspect GKG knew that the Shugden practice passed on from Pabongkha is sectarian but simply feigned ignorance. Because he. . .

    Makes excuses for Shugden and Pabongkha’s sectarianism:

    “In the same way if Je Phabongkhapa, through his dreams and other indications stopped certain practices, including some Nyingma practices, then this was his choice. It may be that in his dreams he felt Dorje Shugden was telling him to stop some of his Nyingma practices, but this does not imply that Dorje Shugden does not like the Nyingma tradition. It merely indicates that Je Phabongkhapa had no karmic connection with the Nyingma tradition. If there is no karmic connection with a particular practice, then you will not receive any good results. So please do not misunderstand. It is possible that Je Phabongkhapa encouraged some of his disciples to stop their Nyingma practice, but again it does not mean that Je Phabongkhapa was telling them that Nyingma practice is not pure, but to encourage them to concentrate on their own tradition. Teachers of all traditions and all religions encourage their people to concentrate on their own tradition. There is nothing wrong in this.” (Geshe Kelsang Gyatso, talk.religion.buddhism, 19 December 1997)

    Now, we know through Pabongkha’s letters that when he was in power, he was violent against other non-Gelug orders, including turning many Nyingma monasteries into Gelug ones by force. It was very unlikely that GKG did not know about it. So you see, GKG did believe some of those stories but chose to explain away the dirty parts.

    And I strongly suspect GKG is sectarian because he …

    Slanders the Dalai Lama for not being a PURE Gelug:

    “According to the information that I have received from authentic sources, when the Dalai Lama first began to engage in Nyingma practices, it was HH Ling Rinpoche who tried to discourage him, strongly advising him against these practices. This does not mean that HH Ling Rinpoche was saying that the Nyingma practices are not good, but he felt that it was an affront to the Gelugpas, indicating that their practice was not a complete path. Until that time the Dalai Lama had been pure Gelugpa, and now he was changing; this was not a good indication for the Gelug tradition. There is no criticism implied that Nyingma practice is not pure.” (Geshe Kelsang Gyatso, talk.religion.buddhism, 19 December 1997)

    It’s purely sectarian logic to say that taking Nyingma teachings will keep one from being a pure Gelug.

    Best

    Shaza

  67. Shaza,
    [Taking refuge in a spirit has no place in Buddhism and you break your vows and stop being a Buddhist. The fact that people is still confused over this issue means more affirmative action is required.]

    I go for refuge to the three jewels, Buddha Dharma & Sangha, the definition of a Buddhist.

    For me DS is a Buddha (Manjushri) for me DS functions as a Buddha. So my refuge is correct in that context.

    If you regard DS as a spirit then for you he functions as a spirit so don’t take refuge, no problem for me and no problem for you. The problem is when YOU tell me I am wrong! And that I am not a Buddhist!
    Do Buddhas exist from their own side independently? Nothing exists from its own side independently.

    For something to exist conventionally it must be imputed upon a valid basis; for me DS is Manjushri imputed upon a valid basis (lineage derived from Manjushri).

    For you this is incorrect as you don’t see this lineage as Valid.

    Trijang (who was Ganden Tripa), is the root Guru of almost, if not all Gelugpas & Pabongka was his Guru, if they are wrong then there is no valid Gelugpa lineage.

    Lineage is all important without lineage there are no valid blessing and there can be no progression upon the path. Reliance upon the SG is not based upon blind faith but upon valid reasoning and valid experience… for me I have this experience and for me I can rely upon my Guru and his Guru with valid experience. You must rely your upon your Guru established via your own experience. What is OK for me is OK for me, what is OK for you is OK for you. The problem arises when you say what I do is not OK, this is your view not my view… we don’t get realisations from reading books and studying history, we get realisations from meditating upon Dharma and receiving blessings. I can only know my realisations at the moment, not yours, but I can say from my own meditation and realisations DS is a Buddha, what your view is your view.

    Cheyenne

  68. Shaza,

    [It’s purely sectarian logic to say that taking Nyingma teachings will keep one from being a pure Gelug]

    ——

    From Cambridge dictionary.

    Sectarian noun [C], adjective MAINLY DISAPPROVING

    (A person) strongly supporting a particular religious group, especially in such a way as not to be willing to accept other beliefs

    ——–

    Practicing pure Gelugpa teachings alone is not sectarian, it is only sectarian if the Gelugpa disapproves of or does not accept others beliefs. This is not the case for DS practitioners and is certainly not what GKG teaches. GKG has said many times that Nyingmas have a complete path.

    There are many paths up a mountain, some easy and quick, some more difficult. If we try to take many paths up a mountain at the same time we may find ourselves going around in circles or not making much progress to the top.

    Paths are paths because the lead somewhere. All Tibetan traditions are complete paths.

    I personally will take the path I am familiar with and where I can visualise the complete journey.

    For me Nyingma path (or any other valid path) is just a distraction from my Gelugpa path. This doesn’t make me sectarian. I could sit alongside a Nyingma meditator, with him meditating upon his path, and me meditating upon my path. Both his path and my path are internal paths, leading to the same result, freedom from suffering for all living beings. I can rejoice in his practice and he can rejoice in my practice.

    GKG sister was married to a Nyingma practitioner and he & GKG used to do practice together, GKG did his practice and his brother in law did hid practice, wonderful.

    Cheyenne

  69. Hi Cheyenne

    [For you this is incorrect as you don’t see this lineage as Valid.]

    You are right I don’t. Especially with the Shugden practice.

    [Trijang (who was Ganden Tripa), is the root Guru of almost, if not all Gelugpas & Pabongka was his Guru, if they are wrong then there is no valid Gelugpa lineage.]

    You must be kidding me. No wonder some NKTers thinks they are the real Gelugs…
    Who is Kirti Tsenshab if not one of the oldest and most respected Gelug Lamas who was completely independent from Pabongkha’s lineage?

    [Lineage is all important without lineage there are no valid blessing and there can be no progression upon the path. Reliance upon the SG is not based upon blind faith but upon valid reasoning and valid experience… for me I have this experience and for me I can rely upon my Guru and his Guru with valid experience.]

    The reasoning part is flawed as I have been trying to tell you all along. So it’s blind faith. But the experience part I frankly don’t know. So to give you the benefit of the doubt you are probably half-right.

    But then the chances of getting any right realizations from deluded gurus with the wrong intentions are … I don’t know.

    Well I am not 100% sure if GKG is sectarian but he did condemn the Dalai Lama for receiving the Nyingma teachings. So you tell me if GKG is “willing to accept other beliefs” accd to your dictionary defination?

    But then I am pretty sure Trijang was sectarian given what he wrote in Sok Te.

    Trijang wrote, “This protector of the doctrine is extremely important for holding Tsongkhapa’s tradition without mixing and corrupting it with confusions due to the great violence and the speed of the force of his actions, which fall like lightning to punish violently all those beings who have wronged the Yellow Hat Tradition, whether they are high or low. This protector is also particularly significant with respect to the fact that many from our own side, monks or lay people, high or low, are not content with Tsongkhapa’s tradition, which is like pure gold, and have mixed and corrupted this tradition with the mistaken views and practices from other schools, which are tenet systems that are reputed to be incredibly profound and amazingly fast but are in reality mistakes among mistakes, faulty, dangerous and misleading paths.”

    Please see post #75 for full quote.

    So what do you think about this?
    Or Trijang’s words do not exist from their own side and it’s OK to be sectarian then?

    Best

    Shaza

  70. Hi Shaza

    You must be aware of the 4 seals. If not, I’ve pasted something I googled for your quick edification. Please feel free to read and comment upon. You see, GKG and the NKT do abide by all four of these seals. So it doesn’t matter if you or others of your persuasion call them “non-buddhist” does it? As Lord Buddha already devised a system whereby people would be able to tell independently whether or not they followed the path of the Buddha. Enjoy:

    Buddhism is distinguished by four characteristics, or “seals.” Actually, if all these four seals are found in a path or a philosophy, it doesn’t matter whether you call it Buddhist or not. You can call it what you like; the words “Buddhist” or “Buddhism” are not important. The point is that if this path contains these four seals, it can be considered the path of the Buddha.
    Therefore, these four characteristics are called “the Four Seals of Dharma.” They are:

    All compounded things are impermanent.

    All emotions are painful. This is something that only Buddhists would talk about. Many religions worship things like love with celebration and songs. Buddhists think, “This is all suffering.”

    All phenomena are empty; they are without inherent existence. This is actually the ultimate view of Buddhism; the other three are grounded on this third seal.

    The fourth seal is that nirvana is beyond extremes.

    Without these four seals, the Buddhist path would become theistic, religious dogma, and its whole purpose would be lost. On the other hand, you could have a surfer giving you teachings on how to sit on a beach watching a sunset: if what he says contains all these four seals, it would be Buddhism. The Tibetans, the Chinese, or the Japanese might not like it, but teaching doesn’t have to be in a “traditional” form.

  71. Hi Shaza

    I rather like the subject of religious, theistic dogma that was raised in the quote I cut and pasted above. You see, some of the terminology you’ve used reminds me of it. Things like – “heretical”. My goodness, I thought that word had died somewhere in Europe at the end of the Dark Ages.

    The most interesting thing about that word is that it was frequently used in the Reformation and Counter Reformation when the Catholic Church was accusing thousands of dissenting Christians of witchcraft. Coincidence? I think not. There’s not a lot of difference between calling someone a ‘witch’ and calling them a ‘heretic’. It’s just another means of coersion and control.

    It’s an unfortunate word to use and I would recommend you stop using it in educated forums and other western religious circles as people will draw the unfortunate but perhaps not irrelevant conclusion that persecutors and critics of Shugden are behaving rather like the Spanish Inquisition.

    Also, your comparison of the Dalai Lama with the Pope. An unfortunate comparison. We all know we’ve had a lot of very nasty and naughty Popes who appear to have had very little interest in spiritual matters and a great deal of interest in worldly matters. Fortunately, chirstendown cast off the yoke of absolute papal authority centuries ago, and for a lot of very good reasons. Oddly enough, the period that ushered in this newer and freer mode of thinking became known as “The Enlightenment”.

    I think you sometimes speak the language of extremism and dogma. That’s not to say that nothing you’ve said is worth listening to. However, those are not qualities I am personally looking to introduce into my practice.

    It also reinforces the fact that Tibetan Buddhism, for all its many gems and wonders, is actually quite medieval in many ways. I think it has a lot to offer personally, but some of that thinking needs to modernised.

    And I guess that applies to both sides of this particular debate.

    I hope this post wasn’t too direct. It seems we are not on opposite sides of the fence. However, we are probably not ever going to be on the same side of the fence either.

    Regards
    Ron

  72. Hi Ron,

    Thx for your input.

    Yes, when I used “heretic”, I did mean to be provocative. But I’ll gladly use “non-Buddhist” if you think it’s more apt.

    When I used the Pope analogy, I clearly had in mind the dirty politics in the kashag during the reigns of various Dalai Lamas when they were under the control of power hungry regents. So my Pope analogy stands. Let’s not throw out a good Pope with his stingy bath water, please.

    Now I know you don’t like my language. But then you haven’t half-addressed the objections that I raised aside from that, have you?

    And which part of the spirit worship of Shugden accords with the Four Seals?

    That we appreciate the impermance of all things and take refuge in a sentient being? You must be kidding me.

    Best

    Shaza

  73. Yes, that ‘s right, I’m kidding you.

    Ha ha.

    Actually, no I’m not. I’m satisifed that the NKT adheres to the 4 seals, whether or not they propitiate Shugden.

    There are many many Buddhist practices that aren’t included in the scope of the 4 seals but we don’t deny that those practitioners are Buddhist. For intance, how is the Kalachakra Initiation included in the 4 seals?

    So you see, that argument is just silly.

    I’m not saying the NKT don’t need to be seriously questioned about some of their policies.

    But I do think they’re Buddhist.

    Also, when an NKT class begins they don’t do a prayer to the 4 jewels. They don’t take refuge in Buddha, Dharma, Sangha and Shugden.

    So perhaps we also need to discuss exactly what “taking refuge” in something means and whether it’s fair to say that Shugden practitioners “take refuge” in Shugden. Shugden is their means of taking deeper refuge in the dharma jewel, isn’t it? So how can it be considered a separate refuge?

    Anyway, it’s complex. And I’m not sure I have that answer. But if you have one that is a genuine solution to that particular conundrum, and not just a comeback because you have something against Shugden, please let me know.

    Thanks for the debate. At least it’s been conducted on a gentlemanly note.

    Regards
    Ron

  74. Finally

    I think the questions you’ve raised which I haven’t addressed really apply to Pabongka and sectarianism.

    I don’t know enough about that subject and so can’t argue with you on that. However, it appears none of the allegations against Pabongka are cut and dry and I know of some very learned practitioners who attest that there is no hard evidence against Pabongka on the allegations of violence against the Nyingma. Nothing that would stand up in a modern court as beyond “a reasonable doubt” anyway.

    I haven’t studied it, and don’t know enough about it. But Robert Thomas and others claim that the case against Pabongka is far from conclusive. Of course, I’m not saying they’re right. I don’t know. But I am trying to keep an open mind on it.

    What is interesting is that many of his suriviving written works are explicitly non-sectarian, and it’s openly stated in the text. I’m reading “Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand” at the moment and can attest to that and will find a quote or two for you if you wish.

    However, I’m no Pabongka expert. And it’s true his perspective may have changed later. Again, I don’t know.

    Others (Robert Thomas from the Kadampa Chat forum, for one) would certainly be able to give you a better run for your money in any discussion on Pabongka.

    Which it why I didn’t directly debate that with you.

    Regards
    Ron

  75. Hi Ron,

    [Anyway, it’s complex. And I’m not sure I have that answer. But if you have one that is a genuine solution to that particular conundrum, and not just a comeback because you have something against Shugden, please let me know.]

    Well, it has always been about the validity of Shugden worship, right? In fact, I was never very keen on condemning NKT for their part but unfortunately the acronmyns continue to pop up in a Shugden debate.
    Problem is, contrary to what Pabongkha claimed, Je Tshongkhapa had never enlisted the help of Shugden to start with. So dropping it right now is the best practice and genuine solution.

    You can say that, no, Pabongkha didn’t think so and installed the sectarian Shugden as Gelug’s major protector. But now some “modern day” Shugdenite like GKG denied Trijang’s words that Shugden was ever sectarian and even wanted to revised that part of the lineage.
    In that case, I can only think of two ways out of it.

    Either

    1) Accept Trijang and Pabongkha were deluded when they taught that Shugden was sectarian. And Shugden followers like GKG has the authority to come to Shugden’s rescue and has the right to purge his teachers’ teachings to paint the picture of the truly harmless Shugden (if there’s one at all).

    Or

    2) Continue to venerate Shugden as a
    sectarian “Buddha”, deluded “wisdom deity” or whatever oxymoron they like.
    Some seem to be advocating a third option i.e. venerate Shugden as nice chap in one’s own imputation empty of inherent existence.
    One might as well write their own Sutras or Tantras if this is allowed. And I won’t be surprised many are already writing it as of now because there’s no shortage of people believing “I think he’s a Buddha and therefore he is” kinda thing.

    And yes, it was silly to use only the 4 seals to measure a tantric practice but it’s exactly how many Shugdenites today would resort to as a fall back argument and justify their practice of Shugden.

    Sadly, falling back on the Sutric views of the 4 seals and 2 truths do not seem to work here. And if Trijang’s futile attempt to justify the practice in “Music Delighting the Ocean of Protectors” is an example, the tantric reasons are also lacking for the Shugden worship.

    So you see. Shugden as a “non-sectarian benign & fully enlightened dharma protector” is just a recent fabrication. I don’t know what Shugdenites do verbally in their refuge but if the intention is to rely on a spirit as Buddha, deity or a wisdom protector, then one breaks the refuge vows all the way to the top. Tell me if it’s a proper object of refuge for the Buddhists. We don’t take refuge in the three gems for no reason at all and we do not need Shugden to help us in that.
    …………………………………………

    [I think the questions you’ve raised which I haven’t addressed really apply to Pabongka and sectarianism.]

    Not totally.

    My points of contention are as much about Trijang as they are about his teacher Pabongka. My problems are about what Trijang wrote in Sok Te, his arguments made in “Music Delighting…” and his stories told in the Yellow Book.

    I hope there is enough proof, beyond a reasonble doubt, that Shugden was meant to be a sectarian spirit and what’s worse is that Trijang endorsed it.

    Trijang was a major link of the modern Shugden revival and so happened to be the fountain head of most shugdenites today. Unless you don’t think Trijang matters, has no right to represent Pabongkha’s lineage, then you’ll probably have no problem disowning him from the Gelug in the name of modernization.

    Sometimes, abandoning a rotten practice is way better than patching it up.

    PS. You know, I enjoyed reading Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand so much that I gave it as a gift to a friend more than a decade ago.

    Just want to say by condemning the Shugden practice, one does not need to discredit everything in the lineage. Despite many criticisms of Trijang and Pabongkha from other schools, it’s incredible that the Dalai Lama continues to have many good things to say about them.

    Best

    Shaza

  76. Ok, thanks for that. It was very informative.

    As I’m not a Shugden practitioner I can listen to what you say without feeling all that threatened.

    However, I’m not a Shugdentite, but all my teachers are and so is virtually my entire Sangha community. So am I a Buddhist taught by non-Buddhists?

    Am I the only Buddhist in my Sangha community? That would seem absurd.

    And even though I don’t venerate Shugden, I do Quick Path pujas. Is my Vajrayogini practice completely invalid? Or am I venerating Shugden without knowing it?

    GKG is certainly my root guru, and Trijang and Pabongka are clearly my lineage gurus. As they were with the Dalai Lama too.

    Were does all this put us?

    Is my practice a sham? Because if it is, it seems it’s the same for countless others in this lineage.

    Regards
    Ron

    PS. I speak hypothetically, of course. This is not a case of me unconditionally accepting your position.

  77. Hi Shaza

    I’ve always been in complete agreement with those who don’t think practicing Shugden is necessary. So I’ve never done it.

    No problemo. Or so I thought.

    And that’s allowed me to keep my Buddhist friends at the FPMT and elsewhere.

    My main practices are Lam Rim and Vajrayogini. But it’s been suggested that in Tantra one needs a dharma protector (You need all three – yidam, guru and dharma protector apparently). This I did not know, so I took Vy/Heruka empowerments with the understanding that this didn’t have anything to do with Shugden. Indeed, it’s been suggested here somewhere that one can’t do Vy without Shugden. If this is true (and I’m hoping somehow it isn’t), this practice I’m deriving such pleasure and benefit out of is at best completely useless and at worst liable to land me in some sort of hell.

    What do you suggest I do about that?

    I have an option, it seems:

    Either 1) I stop Vy (and probably break my samaya and incur root downfalls)
    or 2) I start propitiating Shugden.

    In other words, either way I’m going to hell. Whose hell do I want to go to – GKG’s or the Dalai Lama’s?

    Or do I just adopt a pragmatic western approach and conclude that these Tibetans are just crazy, that it’s all in the mind anyway, and that I should just continue as usual?

    This is the option I’m more inclined to go with.

    Ron

  78. Hi Ron,

    Your worries are well-founded.

    Just be grateful we have come this far with connecting with Buddhism and then move on is my own two cents. The path is indeed a stumbling path.

    The “all or nothing” position is not necessary and doesn’t impress me much. There are many alternatives if one seriously looks for them. FPMT has certainly worked its way around the problems given the options and lineages they have.

    And those who are not satisfied with Pabongkha’s revisionism do go to take those empowerments from another lineage. They are widely available today. And it’s a personal choice and one that’s worth considering.

    I won’t be surprised those who lead your practices and those who are practicing with you are secretly invoking Shugden, so you are most definitely involved whether you are venerating him in secret or not.

    [Indeed, it’s been suggested here somewhere that one can’t do Vy without Shugden. If this is true (and I’m hoping somehow it isn’t), this practice I’m deriving such pleasure and benefit out of is at best completely useless and at worst liable to land me in some sort of hell.]

    You are right it isn’t.

    The special protector has always been Cittipatti/Kinkara from Sakyapas onwards, even GKG taught that. So whoever told you it is Shugden is just spreading indoctrination for obvious reasons. Vy practice does not need Shugden and is way better without him. So don’t lose faith in Vy just because you were not properly taught.

    And just say if you seriously don’t want to have anything to do with the teacher and sangha, simply return your samayas to GKG (if you had received any HYT from him personally), saying you are grateful for his teachings but don’t want to be his student anymore and receive the empowerments from other Gelug teachers like Lama Zopa etc.

    Of course my personal take would be a little more drastic: seek out Vy empowerment from the Sakyapa lineage (widely available today) from HH Sakya Trizin and his sister Jetsunma etc.

    Best

    Shaza

  79. Sakya Pandita states that, no one will eat poison unless it is mixed with wholesome food. Poisoned food, no matter how wholesome in appearance, when eaten will cause illness and death.

    Since there is no way to separate the wholesome food from the poison, once it is poisoned, the only thing left to do is throw it away.

    Likewise, the Dharma presented by NKT, though wholesome upon superficial examination, is contaminated through and through with the poison of the practice of the Gyalpo spirit, Shugden.

  80. pizza n beer
    lyin n sex
    polytix n prostrations
    poppin pills n suckin swills
    warehouse the old n rip up their wills

    zounds like poy-zen 2 me
    they partake of the nectar essence through single pronged vajras which are straws of light

    suckin it down n spewin it out ~ is that a baby in your bathwater or r u just glad to c me?

  81. I would like to respond to post #108.

    1. One interesting irony of him quoting Sakya Pandita is he is a previous incarnation of none other than our good friend Dorje Shugden. So if Sakya Pandita is a qualified source, then surely the Dharma that the later incarnation of Sakya Pandita (namely Dorje Shugden) protects must also be good.

    2. In the past, the Dalai Lama wrote praises and forwards for Geshe Kelsang’s books, and listed them in his suggested reading lists. The words in Geshe Kelsang’s books have not changed, only the politics surrounding those words has changed. If it was pure Buddhism then, it is pure Buddhism now. The NKT practiced Dorje Shugden then, it practices it now. How can something that was once good suddenly transform into bad?

    3. If the whole of the Dharma taught by the NKT should be thrown out due to their involvement with Dorje Shugden, then the same should be true with Trijang Rinpoche and Je Phabongkhapa. If they are thrown out, then Lama Yeshe, Lama Zopa (in other words the entire FPMT), Gonsar Rinpoche and none other than the Dalai Lama should also be thrown out. Indeed, all Gelugpas derive, directly or indirectly, from Trijang Rinpoche and Je Phabongkhapa. Thus if you follow your logic to its natural conclusion, the entire Gelugpa lineage should be thrown out.

    4. If you claim to supposedly represent the position of non-sectarianism, then why do you seek to criticise other traditions? Is not the beating heart of non-sectarianism respecting other traditions? By branding all those who do not mix traditions sectarian, you are, in effect, creating a ‘sect of the non-sectarian.’ Non-sectarianism does not necessarily mean practicing all traditions, it means respecting all traditions. A truly non-sectarian approach would be one where some choose to mix traditions, some choose to follow one tradition purely without mixing, and we all respect one another’s choices. This is all Dorje Shugden practitioners are asking – to be left alone to practice as they choose, free from outside undue interference.

    5. Final question for you: you have bodhisattva vows, which include not criticising another Mahayana tradition. Why do you choose to spend your time publicly breaking your bodhisattva vows? Since your intention in posting your comment was for the whole world to see your views, have you not created the karma of criticising another tradition millions and millions of times? Think about it…

    dspak08

  82. Hi dspak08

    I hate to suddenly turn into arguing against Shugden practitioners, because I think you should just be left in peace, but these arguments are not convincing. You need to do more homework. For instance:
    1) It seems Shugden first appeared in the Sakya ‘pantheon’ as a worldly spirit. So he could not have reincarnated from Sakya Pandita. This is not convincing. It seems invented.
    2) No-one’s arguing that GKG’s books aren’t splendidly written buddhist works, but neither do his books deal with Dorje Shugden (other than Heart Jewel, and the Dalai Lama certainly never endorsed that one).
    3) It seems it’s not true that all Gelugpas derive from Phabongka and Trijang, though the vast majority do. Also, it’s claimed that Tragda, the 2nd Regent, is the Dalai’s Root Guru, not Trijang. The Dalai Lama also had other teachers. On top of that, he’s openly stated that just because he rejects Trijang/Phabongka’s stance on Shugden does not mean he rejects everything they taught.
    4)Not all anti-Shugdenites are criticising the entire tradition, just Shugden worship, and therefore Phabongka’s interpretation of things. Yeah, some reject the “NKT cult” outright, but not everybody’s that blindly dismissive. I think Namdrol’s poison remark probably puts him in a “fundamentalist” framework (it seems very much the same sort of obsession with ‘purity’ that leads others to call the NKT fundamentalist; on the other hand, he may just be pissed off because the NKT have marked him as public enemy no. 6; it would piss me off, so I can’t blame him if he is). However, even th Dalai Lama seems to maintain that there is still much to be salvaged from the teachings of Trijang and Phabongka;
    5)I think you’re probably right on this one, but some may argue that you’re not buddhists because you’ve taken refuge in a worldly spirit. I don’t believe that. I also don’t believe you ‘take refuge’ in Shugden and I think it would be better for you to argue on this basis.

    I mention these things only because I know Namdrol’s position from eSangha and these are points he’s raised there in stating his position (and eSangha’s) on Shugden. I’m not an expert on this. But Namdrol certainly seems to be.

    I repeat: I’m not against your practice. I personally don’t believe it’s a harmful practice. However, I don’t think your arguments hold much water. As a consequence, I don’t practice Shugden myself. I just wish you guys would investigate the matter more rather than simply accept everything on blind faith. You choose to believe the things that suit you, I’m afraid.

    Harlan

  83. Hi Harlan,

    [I think Namdrol’s poison remark probably puts him in a “fundamentalist” framework (it seems very much the same sort of obsession with ‘purity’ that leads others to call the NKT fundamentalist; on the other hand, he may just be pissed off because the NKT have marked him as public enemy no. 6; it would piss me off, so I can’t blame him if he is).]

    don’t worry, I don’t think Namdrol will ever get emotional over this pettiness.

    He’s been marked public enemy by all walks of life from time immemorial and that didn’t bother him.

    Best

    Shaza

  84. “1. One interesting irony of him quoting Sakya Pandita is he is a previous incarnation of none other than our good friend Dorje Shugden.

    This is a complete fantasy, and a total fabrication. Sakya Pandita had only one incarnation i.e. as the Buddha Vimalashri in the Golden World system. There are no subsequent incarnations of Sakya Pandita.

    “2. In the past, the Dalai Lama wrote praises and forwards for Geshe Kelsang’s books, and listed them in his suggested reading lists. The words in Geshe Kelsang’s books have not changed, only the politics surrounding those words has changed. If it was pure Buddhism then, it is pure Buddhism now. The NKT practiced Dorje Shugden then, it practices it now. How can something that was once good suddenly transform into bad?”

    The practice of Dolgyal as conceived by Pabhongkha was never good, and was always a deviant practice in his hands. Forwards writtten by His Holiness for books composed in the early eighties are not relevant now.

    “3. If the whole of the Dharma taught by the NKT should be thrown out due to their involvement with Dorje Shugden, then the same should be true with Trijang Rinpoche and Je Phabongkhapa. If they are thrown out, then Lama Yeshe, Lama Zopa (in other words the entire FPMT), Gonsar Rinpoche and none other than the Dalai Lama should also be thrown out. Indeed, all Gelugpas derive, directly or indirectly, from Trijang Rinpoche and Je Phabongkhapa. Thus if you follow your logic to its natural conclusion, the entire Gelugpa lineage should be thrown out.”

    It is an exaggeration to state that the whole Gelug transmission depends on Pabhongkha. If this were true, it would be a pity. In fact, there are whole lines of transmission in Gelug, still vital and strong, that have nothing to do with Pabhongkha.

    The Dalai Lama certainly has lines of transmission from Pabhongkha, nevertheless, a highly realized master like His Holiness is capable of purifying errors in a lineage so the transmissions from him, regardless of whether they came through Pabhongkha or not, have been restored to the their purity.

    Lama Zopa, Geleg Rinpoche and so on are disciples of His Holiness, therefore the fault you describe are not valid. Since Gonsar Rinpoche and others choose to turn their backs on His Holiness, this is a pity for them.

    In short, His Holiness, the 14th Dalai Lama, is the life force of the Gelugpa Lineage, indeed all of Tibetan Buddhism, and is the teacher of all Tibetan Buddhists. Whoever turns their back on him is someone who flees from the sun, seeking the comforting darkness of their own misconceptions.

    “4. If you claim to supposedly represent the position of non-sectarianism, then why do you seek to criticise other traditions?…”

    When someone’s neighbor is pouring garbage into a pure stream, does one not have the right to complain and do something about it? The practice of the gyalpo, Shugden, is an impure and corrupt practice that has soiled the pure stream of the Gelug tradition.

    “5. Final question for you: you have bodhisattva vows, which include not criticising another Mahayana tradition. Why do you choose to spend your time publicly breaking your bodhisattva vows? Since your intention in posting your comment was for the whole world to see your views, have you not created the karma of criticising another tradition millions and millions of times?”

    If someone chooses to remain silent about faulty views and practices that seek to infect Buddhadharma, knowing that they are wrong and based on fallacies, this is a violation of bodhisattva vows and would constitute a grave fault. Speaking up against fallacious practices like that of Gyalpo Shugden is proper bodhisattva activity. As Choje Sapan points out in Three Vows:

    “To delight in false teachings…is impure diligence.”

    There is no teaching more false then teaching that Gyalpo Shugden is a Buddha.

    As Choje said in his “Letter to the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas”:

    “I, too, have not taught with the intent of disparaging others, And yet, by teaching in accord without scriptural divisions, this has burned the religious traditions of others. When one lays down a straight plumb line, it annoys those having crooked shapes. In the same way, by establishing your teachings correctly, those followers of counterfeit doctrines are not pleased. I am without desire and aversion, but if, wishing to preserve the Doctrine, I speak truthfully, then the person I address becomes furious. If I speak falsely, it is a great evil.”

    And in Three Vows:

    “If to distinguish between true and false teachings is to be “hostility” and “jealousy”, then just how else are beings to be rescued from the ocean of samsara?”

    Such people who view Gyalpo Shugden as a Buddha break the root of their refuge vows, not to mention their bodhisattva vows and Vajrayana vows. How can they be rescued if they are not shown the error of their teachings? Whatever you may think, I have nothing but altruistic concern for those who blindly follow false guides off of the cliffs of wrong views, and these days, chief among those wrong views is the wrong view that Gyalpo Shugden is a somehow a Buddha manifesting as a worldly spirit, or a Buddha in any sense at all.

    Though these days I do not often speak on this matter, since their is little more than can or needs to be said by either side, in this instance it is important to respond to the increasing activities of the so called “New Kadampa Tradition” and their surrogate organizations, as well as their allies among those Tibetans who have turned their face away from the sun of His Holiness, the 14th Dalai Lama’s wisdom. Such actions by the NKT, their surrogate and their students are harmful to all people who live on this planet.

    Because of blind faith, the students of NKT and those Tibetans who have abandoned His Holiness, The Dalai Lama, as their refuge and a protector have no idea what they are doing, and what they are playing with.

    Of course, people are free, and if they wish to adopt the mistaken practices propagated those who follow Gyalpo Shugden, they may. And we who oppose this practice, are equally free to speak out against it.

  85. “…he may just be pissed off because the NKT have marked him as public enemy no. 6; it would piss me off, so I can’t blame him if he is).]”

    Are you kidding? It means that my writings on this subject are effective and have the intended result i.e. turning people away from this mistaken practice.

  86. “This is a complete fantasy, and a total fabrication. Sakya Pandita had only one incarnation i.e. as the Buddha Vimalashri in the Golden World system. There are no subsequent incarnations of Sakya Pandita.”

    juicy ~ but I am pretty shure itzan inkanteyshun ov SP thatzbin showin up ona regular basis at the Golden Shower System wearin a pink feather boa ~ i shud no honey ~ keep on flamin! ~DS

  87. Yes, the NKT and WSS are free to demonstrate. The Dalai Lama is free to ignore them. The Dalai Lama’s supporters are free to criticise the demonstrators. The demonstrators are free to publish hit lists of their critics. The critics are free to respond with further criticism. Everybody is free to denounce everybody else. And all of this is being done for the benefit of all living beings. What a joke. Get me to a zendo.

    “Man is born free and everywhere he is in chains.” – Rousseau

  88. “And all of this is being done for the benefit of all living beings. What a joke.”

    Your apathy demonstrates you have little awareness of the gravity of the situation, and how pernicious this practice actually it, and how harmful to all of us it is.

    N

  89. Hi Namdrol

    If you mean that I’ve not been persuaded on your position, then you are right. It’s a bit presumptious to call this “apathy”, or to translate this into “little awareness”.

    Harlan

  90. My mind is completely open on this. I’ve been a member of the NKT for 2 years, but I’ve never practiced Shugden. And with no small amount of peer pressure put on me. Which has to say something.

  91. I am afraid that you don’t really have the equipment necessary to understand this issue in its fine detail on your own ( in other words, through no fault of your own, really, you do not have the proper amount of education in Tibetan language and history to make a proper and informed judgement). Suffice it to say that your situation is not good, and the longer you stay with NKT, the worse things will be.

    High Lama after high Lama in all four schools have come out against this practice. Do you think your understanding can compare to theirs?

    But if you choose of follow Kalsang Gyatso, you have only yourself to blame for the ill that will inevitably befall you, as it has so many other Shugden practitioners– even those who “never mix”.

    N

  92. You are in a lineage where the influence of this gyalpo is pervasive, everyone around you is practicing this– you are foolish if you think it has no effect upon you personally.

  93. Surely in Buddhism, intention is of the highest importance. I practice at the NKT, I have been at study programmes at the NKT, and still am technically, though this is due to end. But nothing related to Shugden. Nothing at all. That is understood there and by and large accepted. It makes me unusual in that regard there, but nowhere has GKG said I have to accept his dharma protector. So I haven’t. So I’m not sure what the problem is.

  94. I don’t mean to be blase, but without this lama, I would not have a dharma practice. The reality is I have empowerments with this lama. I choose to take my commitments seriously.

  95. It really depends what kind of empowerments, if it is not Heruka or something like this, like Yamantaka, you are under no samaya obligation.

    Even if you have, you still are under no obligation to stay. One can always, at any time, choose to leave and go elsewhere if there is a problem.

    There are hundreds of qualified masters in all four schools.

    N

  96. lazy buddhist,

    thank you for posting openly and honestly. when i first came across the nkt 6 years ago i did some online research on the ds controversy. i was relieved of the need to do extensive research by the copious amounts of pretty nasty anti-nkt abuse and slander. Most of the discussions i read involved an nkt practitioner honestly trying to make open debate versus someone or other using very biased and harsh criticism against the nkt, sometimes issuing insults and jeers. i was only 19 and totally new to buddhism, but as far as my intuition could tell this anti group seemed totally un-buddhist (and was really disturbing my mind), so i decided to quit the research and to trust my newly-found sangha. 6 years later i am still an nkt-practioner and i have no major complaints about the tradition, quite contrarily i have recieved great support and been given tons of blessings. of course, i’ve had my moments. when the the recent demos began i was really upset so i began to do some more research. this time i’m glad i did, because i hadn’t realised the apparent extent of the dl’s actions (note: i am not against the dalai lama, and i am only going by what i personally found on the web). but again i came across a huge amount of anti-nkt stuff. i suppose what i’m trying to say is that all this hate stuff makes me believe more firmly in my people, and i would of thought that the purpose these people mean to achieve is the opposite. no doubt, if i have compassion for someone who is involved in a religious sect and i want to open their eyes to the truth the last thing i want to do is speak like an angry bullying teenager as this will have the opposite effect of that which is desired. this is the main reason why after much research i still choose to side with the nkt.
    when i read all the hate mail i inmeaditely shut off to the ideas of the poster because i suspect they are under the influence of delusion and therefore unable to have a balanced view of the nkt. i don’t know how others feel about this, but i would imagine that these peoples efforts to awaken us to the reality that the nkt is evil (and all the rest) are sometimes causing the opposite effect. that’s what it does to me anyway.
    sorry, bit long-winded! again thanks lazy buddhist for speaking openly and without hate

    harry

  97. Yeah, Harry.

    I know what you mean. But these recent demonstrations have really not gone down well with me. I think they suck buckets. I personally do not see the Dalai lama as the personification of evil. And I object enough to the way this campaign’s been conducted to start feeling that I’m not at all in step with this organisation. I’m not a Shugden practitioner, and don’t understand why the NKT and GKG have sacrificed so much for this arcane and, as I see it, quite dispensable practice. It’s all a bit much really.

  98. Hi Namdrol

    I do have HYT empowerments (Heruka/Vajrayogini). I do have to maintain my samayas. Of course, that doesn’t mean I need to keep participating in the NKT if I choose to leave.

  99. “i suppose what i’m trying to say is that all this hate stuff…”

    We don’t “hate” NKT.

    We think your teacher is deluded and is leading you down a false path.

    Because we have compassion for you, we are telling you that you are mistaken, that you are infected with a kind of spiritual disease, and that this disease will impeded your realization.

    You folks are innocents when it comes to the history of Tibetan Buddhism, and have been spoon fed lies.

    For example, it is an outright fabrication to assert that Choje Sakya Pandita has taken rebirth anywhere but in the world system Golden, where he became the Buddha Vimalashri.

    For example, there are no reincarnations of Shakyamuni Buddha. There are no reincarnations of Vipashyin, Sikhin, Kashyapa or Kanakamuni. There are no reincarnations of Padmasambava, Milarepa, or Lama Tsongkhapa. There are no reincarnations of any of the these fully realized masters.

    Sakya Pandita outwardly achieved the signs and marks and attained total realization of a tenth stage bodhisattva. In his next incarnation, he became a fully awakened Buddha, Vimalashri. Claiming that Sakya Pandita reincarnated as Buton, Panchen Sonam Dragpa, or any of these lesser scholars, is simply a mistake.

    Sakya Pandita warns:

    “…even common geshes are called Buddhas,
    what is pleasing to poets will never please the wise.”

    You have been caught up in the Indian and then Tibetan custom of poetic hyperbole. Since you have no basis in a good education in Tibetan and Indian Buddhist literature, you have been caught unawares, and take literally things which no soundly educated Tibetan or Indian Buddhist would take literally.

    Another outright fabrication is the assertion that Gyalpo Shugden, a worldly spirit, is an emanation of Manjushri. You even misread the remarks of Sakya masters concerning the nature of this gyalpo. The so-called praise written by the great Fifth is a blatant forgery.

    It is true that the Dalai Lama used to practice an amendment rite, but he did so without understanding the nature of his relationship with Dogyal. He also never received a Shugden entrustment.

    Moreover, the entrustment rite composed by Pabhongkha is explicitly sectarian, just as Pabhongkha was himself.

    I know that your teacher has instructed you to ignore the Yellow Book, but what fool would actually deny that these words were truly spoken by Trijiang Rinpoche to his students? You have to imagine some massive fabrication on the part of Zemey Tulku. So in stead you just put your head in the sand, and seek to ignore what you do not want to comprehend i.e. that your protector is a wrathful and harmful being.

    There are hundreds of accounts of the negative actions of Pehar, Shugden and all the protectors in the class of Gyalpos. There are many unenlightened protectors in all four schools. They are normally relied upon by powerful yogis. But your teacher is trying to whitewash this protector, Gyalpo Shugden, out of blind devotion.

    There is at present no one more blind than Kalsang Gyatso. His assertion that none of the Lamas in the Yellow Book could be harmed by spirits because they have taken refuge in the Three Jewels is a naive lie told to placate you. Out of the 404 illnesses that can afflict sentient beings (there are actually many more, but they all fall in these categories), 101 of them are due to spirits. When these are condensed there are three kinds, male spirits, female spirits and genderless spirits like Nagas. Just as a Buddhist who has taken refuge can be harmed by another human being, so too can a Buddhist who has taken refuge be harmed by spirits when the causes and conditions are present. And you people, rather than taking pains to prevent such influence, welcome into your homes and hearts one of the most pernicious, pestilence-causing spirits ever in the history of Tibetan Buddhism.

    What you fail to realize is that Gyalpos like Shugden and Pehar, are, among other things, practiced as protectors for political influence of large monasteries and high officials. But common people do not need such practices.

    Shugden is not a wisdom protector, he is surrounded by pernicious ghosts, and his influence is not salutary, but is negative.

    Someday you will wake up to this fact. I hope you do so soon, so you will not be trapped with Dolgyal in the bardo.

    N

  100. Incidentally, it is impossible for Dulzin Dragpa Gyaltsen to be the reincarnation of Buton as well. Why?

    Buton Rinchen Drup lived from 1290 to 1364.

    Dulzin Dragpa Gyaltsen lived from 1350 to 1413.

  101. Namdrol Says:
    July 17, 2008 at 3:44 pm

    “If you understood the real situation, you would be persuaded.”

    sew lettuce sea hear ~ reality = ultimate truth. ultimate truth = emptiness. emptiness = the lack of inherent existence.

    o yeah – now I git it!

    like we seyd b4 = karma aint really a bitch unless you mean a female dog the size of the uni verse. (with an infinite number of titties thatiz)

    sew once again = people are dying ~ the whirld is a bucket of shit (that looks like a tittie so we keep suckin onit) ~ and without a spiritual guide of sum kinda color how wee ever gonna change anything other than chasin our tails in the udder die rekshun?

    if we stood under the real situation then weed no more than we do witch iz kinda wear weez all tryin to git 2 n e ways ~ yes?

  102. hi harlan,

    there are some pretty strong accusations in some of the wss pamphlets, but i have never heard the nkt or the wss saying the dalai lama is the personification of evil. and i have certainly never heard any friend of mine within the nkt say anything of the sort. actually there was one guy from my centre who started saying nasty things about the dl but everyone else in the centre warned him not to be disrespectful.

    “I’m not a Shugden practitioner, and don’t understand why the NKT and GKG have sacrificed so much for this arcane and, as I see it, quite dispensable practice”

    with all respect, i don’t think it’s for you to decide what is and is not dispensable for a tradition to practice. you can only make up your own mind in respect to your own practice. if you don’t wish to practice dorje shugden that is fine, it is your right and there is nothing wrong with that.

    may we all learn to live and let live (including nkt and wss people if we aren’t doing so already : )

    harry

  103. hi namdrol,

    interesting that you should take this personally, as i was referring more to posters like davcuts and avyorth. nevertheless your words, although not dripping with hate, have a similar effect on me:

    “We think your teacher is deluded and is leading you down a false path.”

    “Because we have compassion for you, we are telling you that you are mistaken, that you are infected with a kind of spiritual disease, and that this disease will impeded your realization.”

    “Someday you will wake up to this fact. I hope you do so soon, so you will not be trapped with Dolgyal in the bardo.”

    this is patronising and in the nature of insult. i ask you, do you go around the forums of all the different religions that you don’t agree with and spend your time trying to “wake them up” by exposing the faults of their doctrine to them? the dalai lama himself teaches to respect all traditions and to not go around criticizing them. i have never heard an nkt’er saying one bad thing about another tradition, let alone going around online forums trying to convince people that their tradition is rubbish!

    “We think your teacher is deluded and is leading you down a false path.”

    good for you. we also think the dalai lama is a bit off-centre, but we don’t condemn his whole being and tradition because of it. we rejoice in your faith in him and respect your wish to listen to him. we aren’t running around the forums trying to destroy his followers faith in him.

    “Because we have compassion for you, we are telling you that you are mistaken, that you are infected with a kind of spiritual disease, and that this disease will impeded your realization.”

    this is about the most patronising thing i’ve heard. not much to say really. i mean, how the hell do you know this? how do you know i’m not realised? i’m not realised, and not pretending to be, but how can you know that? it can only be one of two answers: 1 you know because you are a buddha, and 2 you don’t know because your mind is clouded with ignorance like mine, in which case your words are pretty arrogant. wow, some assumptions.

    “Someday you will wake up to this fact. I hope you do so soon, so you will not be trapped with Dolgyal in the bardo.”

    more of the same. i would hope such confidence arises from a direct perception of this fact.

    i’m sorry, namdrol, if my own tone isn’t that calm, it’s just that i sometimes get a bit upset over these things. i suppose it’s a lesson on attachment to my views for me.

    all the best,
    harry

  104. Harry:

    “i’m not realised, and not pretending to be, but how can you know that?”

    If you mistake a mundane being for a Buddha, your refuge will be false. Ergo, your realization will be impeded. If it is responded, “It is the case that even an unawakened Guru of Highest Yoga Tantra should be regarded as a Budda”;– this is true, however the circumstances are very different. In the former case one is making a simple attribution case, while in the latter, one is connected to the result with special methods through the (qualified) Guru from whom receives empowerment. Of course, if one’s Guru is not a qualified Guru, then there is no benefit from following their teachings at all in this or in future lives. Such Gurus send their students to vajra hell.

    N

  105. do you see this everyone? this gentleman is choosing to let me know i am most certainly going to hell for being in the nkt, instead of answering my simple questions.

    well thank you, namdrol, but life is hard enough without someone telling me that if i don’t quit my religion i shall go to hell. you’re out of order mate. it seems to me your motivation is to insult.

    don’t waste your words, i have no intention of leaving the nkt. like i’ve said before nutters like you only make me take stronger refuge in my tradition. you sound like the inquisition. i was raised a catholic and have had a lot of all that already. we’re in the 21st century for goodness sake!

    harry

  106. From the throne, my RT called the Dalai Lama a liar and a hypocrite who’s aim was to destroy the pure lineage of Je Tsongkhapa to increase his power. I’ve heard other unbelievable dimwitted and malevolent things said many times recently about the DL. You don’t have to call him evil directly to infer that he’s some kind of Darth Vader.

    I’m inclined to let people practice what they want, including Shugden. After all, I’m in the NKT (though certainly on my way out). However, it’s entirely appropriate for me to question the NKT on this one. Continuing a practice that has alienated the rest of the Tibetan Buddhist world is not only sheer folly, it’s had many severe and negative consequences for many of the practictioners who have found themselves in the NKT, including me. It’s entirely appropriate for me to question why a practice that other gelugpas have found dispensable to the spritual practice is viewed as indispensable to our tradition. It becomes more appropriate to raise those questions the more you delve into it. It’s equally appropriate to start drawing attention to the fact that most people are inculcated into this practice at the NKT with no understanding and no information on it.

    The consequences of this practice have been severely divisive, and have resulted in a great deal of trauma many many novice buddhists in the west. I deserve a few straightforward answers on some very shadowy issues surrounding it. And so does everyone else.

  107. if your next post is more anti-nkt stuff, i will not reply, as i seriously don’t want to get into one of these arguments that lead to nowhere. if you wish to slander my tradition please do not address the post to me.
    thank you,
    harry

  108. hi harlan,

    you make a very fair point. it is of course everyones right to question and to research ones tradition, or any tradition. and specially when, like you say, many people are suffering from things that may be caused by the tradition. however i don’t know if you can blame the problems that are occurring on the practice itself. i mean the most obvious thing that springs to my mind are the current actions of the dalai lama. he is dividing his own country and trying to force people to abandon the practice. he has labelled us non-buddhists! are you saying that in order to be peace and harmony, we just need to let the lama have his way, and tell us what we must and must not do in our lives?

    yes i agree that sometimes people go a bit too far in their speech (don’t we all), but i don’t think calling him a liar is neccesarily labelling him as evil. i personally respect the dalai lama, i think he has compassion and wisdom, and he has done a lot for the world. but i also think he is possibly human, and in the case of ds, behaving like a hipocrite and telling some little lies too. yet i don’t think he is evil! and i think most of the nkt people i’ve spoken to feel in a similar way, including some high profile people who have been in the front rows chanting at the demos.
    unfortunately sometimes we become extreme in our views and this may be the case of some people you have spoken to. i have heard people say silly things too.

    oh it’s all a bit of a palava isn’t it?

    best,
    harry

  109. “I deserve a few straightforward answers on some very shadowy issues surrounding it.”

    I have been giving people straight forward answers on the history and nature of the Shugden practice for many, many years now. I ought to know, I am a Sakyapa, and read Tibetan fluently.

    I have pointed out many of the contradictions in statements made by exponents of this practice.

    I have pointed out many facts about Pabhongkha’s incredibly sectarian behavior while he was governor of the Chamdo province in Tibet, facts which are to be found in his own collected works, edited by Trijiang Rinpoche.

    It is well known that for his own purposes, Kalsang Gyatso has discarded the teaching of the Buddha and substituted his own “monastic” vows in place of the Buddha’s Vinaya, a completely unprecedented novelty that renders all of NKT “monks” and “nuns” lay people running around in robes– and this has the net effect of defrauding the public, and especially beginning Buddhists who do not know what a real monk or nun actually is.

    I have pointed out even simple contradictions in the NKT Shugden story by pointing out that it is impossible for Buton to have reincarnated as Dulzin Dragpa Gyaltsen, since their lives overlapped for 14 years.

    There are other contradictions one can find in the NKT story, such as the concept that the 15th century Sakya Lama Dagchen Lodo Gyaltsen was the first person to practice Shugden– which is impossible since he lived shortly after Tsongkhapa.

    If anyone, with unblinded eyes, examines this new and perverted protector tradition, they will discover it is founded on a tissue of half-truths, fabrications and when necessary, outright lies as well as fear mongering. These things have been well documented by countless scholars, both within and without Gelugpa for the past three centuries.

    Why today, I even ran across the laughable assertion that Dhonthog Tulku, the chief Sakya polemicist against this practice, considers Shugden a bodhisattva– I know Dhongthog Tulku, and I have read his works in English and in Tibetan, and this is an outright blatant lie. But the WSS and the NKT will stop at nothing in terms of fabricating outright lies.

    People like Harry, et al, are not interested in the truth– they are merely following NKT in the same manner as football hooligans follow Manchester United, etc. They even have their own skinheads, albeit, dressed up in maroon and gold rather than boots and braces.

    This is the Sangha to which you belong. Truthfully, your samaya vows are worth nothing since your Guru is not a qualified teacher.

    N

  110. Harry says:

    “however i don’t know if you can blame the problems that are occurring on the practice itself.”

    Of course one can– those problems and many more.

  111. Harry:

    I don’t call people names i.e. “nutters like you…”

    It isn’t personal, even if I think your teacher is deluded man possessed by gyalpo spirit.

    N

  112. fair enough, i’m sorry i called you a nutter.

    but may i ask: if it’s not personal, then why why do you need to insult us?

    for example “People like Harry, et al, are not interested in the truth they are merely following NKT in the same manner as football hooligans follow Manchester United, etc. They even have their own skinheads, albeit, dressed up in maroon and gold rather than boots and braces.”

    “Someday you will wake up to this fact. I hope you do so soon, so you will not be trapped with Dolgyal in the bardo.”

    anyone correct me if this is not scathing, insulting language.

    why namdrol?

    harry

  113. Hi guys —

    Just a general reminder to keep it civil. This thread has a good history of respectful debate, and I ask that you please follow that trend. This is my personal blog, and do not wish to have fisticuffs breaking out here. I ask that everyone on all sides of the debate behave in a manner befitting our chosen faith of Buddhism.

    Carry on.

  114. Namdrol

    May I ask your opinion on something? If these fabrications are so evident to anyone who has access to the documents/primary evidence in Tibetan, how come Phabongka and Trijang were able to hoodwink the entire gelugpa establishment for half a century, or more? How come it took extensive research into old decaying hypotheses and histories for the 14th Dalai Lama and friends (I presume he had some scholarly assistance, such as the late Lobsang Gyatso, though I don’t really know) to uncover these untruths?

  115. Hi Harlan:

    “May I ask your opinion on something? If these fabrications are so evident to anyone who has access to the documents/primary evidence in Tibetan, how come Phabongka and Trijang were able to hoodwink the entire gelugpa establishment for half a century, or more? How come it took extensive research into old decaying hypotheses and histories for the 14th Dalai Lama and friends (I presume he had some scholarly assistance, such as the late Lobsang Gyatso, though I don’t really know) to uncover these untruths?”

    Prior to 1959 books were expensive, rare, and mostly in the hands of monastic and private libraries. After 1959 the whole of Tibetan culture was disrupted.

    Another factor was the way in which the four lineages were siloed from one another. A fact of Tibetan history is that there was very little true intellectual exchange between Tibetan Buddhist schools subsequent to the rise of the Gelug hegemony in the seventeenth century in Central Tibet.

    Another factor is Pabhongkha’s political power. After the thirteenth Dalai Lama passed away, Pabhongkha swiftly consolidated his power, and he was the most popular Gelug master in Central Tibet. He spread the practice of Dholgyal among the central Tibetan eiites. So when HH Dalai Lama was a 15 year old boy, he went along with whatever he was told to do. At this point, the new Shugden phenomena was no more than 30 years old, and its wide proliferation only the same age as himself.

    Another factor, and perhaps the most important one one in all of this, is that ordinary Tibetans, for the most part have no access to large libraries, even if they can read, nor do they have the critical skills necessary to uncover such information systematically or even necessarily understand its import.

    Since Shugden is not mentioned in any tantra, nor is he mentioned in the annals of Padmasambhava, nor is he mentioned anywhere in any book prior to the rise of the Gyalpo at Dhol Chu Mig in Tibet, the records we have of him are largely confined to biographies of high lamas and their visionary interactions with him, with his oracles, and in some cases, in Sakya, his interaction with the Khon family, to whom he was originally bound as a mundane protector into the retinue of the Four-faced Mahakala.

    Of course, the Sakyapas have never been confused about Shugden’s nature, and in the form he assumed at Sakya, the so called rta nag Shugden i.e. Shugden on a black horse, he was always considered the junior of the rgyal po gsum, the three gyalpos, i.e. Gyalpos Pehar, Setrab and Shugden.

    Since this concept that this deity was newly minted as a wisdom protector, Tibet was in social chaos at the time of his rise, with the Chinese revolution happening on its eastern border, World Wars One a recent memory and WWII swirling arounds its border, and since Shugden was renovated to be a kind of Gelugpa Dorje Legpa (who function in Nyingma is mainly to support practitioners with favorable conditions), no one in the Gelug school really bothered to discover the truth of the nature of Shugden, since they were caught up in the cult of personality that had sprung up around Pabhongkha.

    N

  116. Harry:

    “but may i ask: if it’s not personal, then why why do you need to insult us?”

    I am not insulting you.

    However, I think the people NKT dresses up in religious outfits are behaving like thugs and hooligans, deliberately trying to a provoke confrontations to obtain media space, fabricating press releases as “news” i.e. for example this PRweb screed by NKT/WSS:

    http://www.prweb.com/releases/2008/7/prweb1121004.htm

    Frankly, you folks are being manipulated, lied to, and defrauded by NKT.

    N

  117. A friend wrote from Madison:

    “Saw the WSS at the teachings today.
    6:41 PM

    They are good at setting up camera angles the way they arrange themselves for protests
    6:42 PM

    I don’t think there were more than 40 of them, but they spread themselves out horizontally and staggered slightly back so they looked like many many more”

  118. Thank you Namdrol

    That was quite informative.

    If I was to go to an NKT centre knowing about the pervasive influence of Shugden, what could I do to protect myself? Principally, I’m talking about pujas or sadhana recitations that don’t invoke shugden. The reason I ask is that it would benefit me to continue to attend one particular HYT sadhana until I have mastered it. It’s only practiced infrequently there. And I also have to maintain my samayas.

    I say this now with the intention of continuing my own practice at home until I have another alternative. In fact, I have really concluded my studies with the NKT today.

    I’d really appreciate it if you have any advice on this.

    Harlan

    PS. I share your distaste for these demonstrations.

  119. Hi Harlan:

    I appreciate your concern for maintaining your samayas– even to a teacher of questionable qualifications– that speaks a lot for you.

    I would imagine that you are talking about Vajrabhairava or Cintamani Tara. In either case, it would best if you found another Gelug Sangha and underwent the necessary empowerments, etc. You need to find another Guru. There are many qualified Gurus in Gelug. You can always contact me at E-Sangha if you like.

    Ironically, the best way you can protect yourself at NKT centers from Dholgyal is to chant the Migtsema.

  120. Ironing is reality ~ and pizza is not italian

    this should prove something about the Liverpool Lineage = all we are saying is give pizza chance

  121. oar moar ironical stil is that ya can lead a horse to water but that dont mean he kin swim ~ and itz mighty handy havin oppozible thumbs tho really = eyed advize makin good use ovem if eye was u

  122. namdrol,

    i’m afraid i remain entirely suspicious of your motives. the language you used on me was full of sting, which makes me dubious of your “compassion” towards us, and more so of your sources of information.

    i’m not into the “i’m right, your wrong” game. i think anyone with a little wisdom won’t play it. of course the are exceptions, but you don’t give me much reason to beleive you anyway.

    i had a similar encounter this year with avyorth rollinson, i’m sure you know him as he is also deeply “anti”, and he behaved in a exactly the same way: first insulting (taunting may i say?) and then pretending he hadn’t been offensive in the least. a puzzling game.

    i know what your stance on nkt is, so you don’t need remind me again. i already asked you before: please don’t write to me with more of it because i’m not interested (i’m obviously deeply brainwashed and it won’t have any effect : ) the reason i wrote back was to ask you about your attitude. as i presume you don’t want to talk about this i suggest we finalize our conversation.

    would it be within reason to finnish on a friendly note? i mean, can we as fellow buddhists wish each other the best along the path? well i wish you all the best anyway, mate.

    cheers,
    harry

  123. i just wanna make a comment on post 113 from shaza:

    “the NKT have marked him as public enemy”

    this is nonsense. “him” has been marked by an independent person as a person who spends a lot of time posting dubious info on the nkt, and not by the organization nkt as an enemy! i have been in the nkt for a while and it simply does not operate in this way. even the dalai lama is not considered to be an enemy. nkt’ers are surprisingly sincere and honest in my experience, a real accomplishment if they’re under the influence of a powerful evil spirit

  124. Harry:

    “…more so of your sources of information”

    You really believe that Dulzin Dragpa Gyaltsen was the incarnation of Buton? Even though their lives overlapped by 14 years?

    That is a little incredible.

    As for my sources of information, they are much better than yours– especially since I read Tibetan and you don’t.

    You need to wake up, Harry, and stop believing that malevolent spirits are Buddhas.

    N

  125. Harry sez:

    “nkt’ers are surprisingly sincere and honest in my experience, a real accomplishment if they’re under the influence of a powerful evil spirit”

    I am sure that many people within NKT are sincere in their wish to practice an authentic Dharma. I am equally sure that the rank and file in NKT are being duped and taken for a ride. I am certain too that people like Kalsang Pema and so on are complete and total liars. They post fraudulent things to the web daily.

    I am equally certain that you know very little about the history of the Gelug lineage, because if you did, you would run away from NKT screaming.

  126. hi shaza,

    i’m sorry, i was browsing at some of the earlier posts, and i did not see correctly that indeed you were quoting harlan.

    nice one.

    ciao,
    harry

  127. Harry said:

    ““the NKT have marked him as public enemy”

    this is nonsense. “him” has been marked by an independent person”

    Well, Harry, the fact is that newkadampatruth.org is owned lock, stock and barrel by the NKT:

    omain ID:D153088919-LROR
    Domain Name:NEWKADAMPATRUTH.ORG
    Created On:25-Jun-2008 22:18:50 UTC
    Last Updated On:25-Jun-2008 22:45:54 UTC
    Expiration Date:25-Jun-2009 22:18:50 UTC
    Sponsoring Registrar:eNom, Inc. (R39-LROR)
    Status:CLIENT TRANSFER PROHIBITED
    Status:TRANSFER PROHIBITED
    Registrant ID:6a70526357c
    Registrant Name:NKT Secretary
    Registrant Organization:New Kadampa Tradition
    Registrant Street1:Conishead Priory
    Registrant Street2:
    Registrant Street3:
    Registrant City:Ulverston
    Registrant State/Province:LANCS
    Registrant Postal Code:LA12 9QQ
    Registrant Country:GB
    Registrant Phone:+44.1229588533
    Registrant Phone Ext.:
    Registrant FAX:
    Registrant FAX Ext.:
    Registrant Email:domainmanagement@kadampa.net

    Name Server:NS1.KADAMPAHOSTING.NET
    Name Server:NS2.KADAMPAHOSTING.NET

    So if you think NKTorganization hasn’t singled me and the five other persons on the web, you are mistaken.

    Incidentally, Namkhai Norbu is one of my teachers.

  128. harry

    I did say that the NKT had made him “public enemy”. Whether I was right to say that or not is open to question. They’ve named him as a fierce critic of the NKT, which he is. So I don’t think anyone is right or wrong on that. It’s merely a statement of fact. I guess I shouldn’t have used the words ‘public enemy’.

  129. harlan,

    thanks, that is more accurate. i was only trying to defend the nkt from unnecesary accusations. we already have enough bad press, and although i’m not omniscient and cannot verify how much is true and how much is not, i can certainly make an attempt at trying to point out some of the exaggerated anti-nkt stuff that gets posted around the web.

    all the best,
    harry

  130. harlan,

    soz i forgot to say i really appreciate your more neutral approach to the whole affair, it’s a breath of fresh air. i do get a bit annoyed when nkt’ers and anti-nkt people just endlessly bicker without reaching any mutual understanding. i’ve fallen into this trap a few times (as i have with namdrol) and i guess it’s a lesson for me to learn not retaliate, to keep a peaceful mind and try to understand the other ones position.

    keep up the desire for truth, mate

    harry

  131. namdrol,

    ok so you say this website is nkt. i did not realise this so thanks for correcting my mistake. however, my point was really about the “enemy” bit. harlan has resolved the issue in post 166. you know what i mean anyway so no need to go into detail.

  132. No worries, Harry. I feel I have one foot in and one foot out of the NKT right now, which is why I may seem neutral. But I’m not “anti” the NKT. I am anti some of the nonsense going on right now though.

  133. “I am afraid that you don’t really have the equipment necessary to understand this issue in its fine detail on your own”

    ahhh ~ they final refuge of the arrogant!

    does anti-non-sense = pro-cents? eye sure hope so cuz eye m broke.

  134. With Reference to BUTON & DULZIN DRAGPA GYALTSEN having lifespan overlap & how Buddha’s can manifest many forms and don’t have to be linear but can be simoultaneaous.

    ————–

    Extract from Music Delighting the Ocean Of Protectors

    Kyabje Trijang Dorje Chang (Tutor to the Dalai Lama)

    VAJRADHARA DORJE SHUGDEN’S PRINCIPAL
    EMANATION LINEAGE DURING OUR TIME
    BUDDHA MANJUSRI
    MHASIDDHA VIRUPA
    SAKYA PANDITA
    BUTON RINCHEN DRUB
    DULZIN DRAGPA GYALTSEN
    PANCHEN SONAM DRAGPA
    SONAM YESHE WANGPO
    SONAM GELEG PELSANG
    TULKU DRAGPA GYALTSEN

    Furthermore, during the time of the Teachings of this southern continent’s fourth world leader, the Lion of the Shakyas’, he emanated as Venerable Manjusri, mahasiddha Birwapa (Virupa), Sakya Pandita Kunga Gyaltsen, Buton Rinchen Drub, Dulzin Dragpa Gyaltsen, Panchen Sonam Dragpa, and Panchen Sonam Dragpa’s successive incarnations such as Sonam Yeshe Wangpo, Sonam Geleg Pelsang, and Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen. His emanations are infinite, all over the land of the aryas, India, and the ‘Land of Coolness’, Tibet, including incarnation lineages of masters and siddhas, some whose lineages are traced in unbroken succession, and others who lived concurrently with each other. Praise to all those great ornaments of the Teachings engaged in whatever acts of expounding and enacting the Dharma!

    TULKU DRAGPA GYALTSEN INCARNATION LINEAGE
    Generally speaking, there are various ways of listing the incarnation lineages. When the great fifth Dalai Lama was twenty‐three, Tashi Gyatso, the chant leader of the great prayer hall of Drepung Monastery, requested him to compose a prayer to Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen mentioning his previous
    lifetimes as the great Kashmiri Pandit, Buton Rinpoche. His chamberlain, Sonam Chopel, who when he later became involved in politics became known as Sonam Rabten, objected that the addition of Buton Rinpoche’s name in the author information included with one of Panchen Sonam Dragpa’s treatises was a mistake and he created disturbances accosting Panchen Losang Chogyen Rinpoche and Lingme Shabdrung Trichen Konchog Chopel, saying that a prayer including Buton Rinpoche, etc, was wrong. This stirring of conflict and division made it so that the fifth Dalai Lama did not compose any prayer other than the well known usual prayer to Panchen Sonam Dragpa and so forth. The chant leader who had requested it did not want it, rolled up the paper and made it into a throwing stick! The story is recounted in many of the biographies of the Fifth Dalai Lama.

    – ACCORDING TO
    PANCHEN LOSANG CHOGYEN, THE 4TH PANCHEN LAMA –
    MAGHADHA ZANGMO
    BODHIDHARMA
    SHAKYA SHRI
    CHOKU OZER
    BUTON RINCHEN DRUB
    KUNGA LODRO
    PANCHEN SONAM DRAGPA
    SONAM YESHE WANGPO
    SONAM GELEG PELSANG
    TULKU DRAGPA GYALTSEN

    Panchen Losang Chogyen was not prevented from acknowledging the incarnation lineage. In the Tsang Tashi Lhunpo edition of his collected works’, in the ‘CHA PA’ volume, a section known as ‘E WAM’, lists the incarnation lineage of Tulku Dragpa Panchen Losang Chogyen was not prevented from acknowledging the incarnation lineage. In the Tsang Tashi Lhunpo edition of his collected works’, in the ‘CHA PA’ volume, a section known as ‘E WAM’, lists the incarnation lineage of Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen as including Maghadha Zangmo, Bodhidharma, the Kashmiri Pandit Shakya Shri, omniscient Choku Ozer, Buton Rinchen Drup, Kunga Lodro, Panchen Sonam Dragpa, Sonam Yeshe Wangpo, Sonam Geleg Pelsang, and concluding with Dragpa Gyaltsen. Shal Ngo Sonam Rabten criticized it with angry words of prejudice against Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen of the upper house of Drepung.
    The author information that was the basis of his mistake was that included in Beautiful Ornament of the Mind, the account of the origins of the Kadampa tradition:

    Protector who tells the story of Buddha’s Teachings,
    The Kashmiri Buton who comes from Shalu,
    Sole chronicler of the stories of central Tibet,

    As the glorious Sonam Dragpa, composed this.

    When checked closely, this qualified source appears to accept that Panchen Sonam Dragpa was an emanation of Buton.

    – ACCORDING TO
    LOSANG LUNGTOG TENZIN TRINLEY,
    KYABJE LING DORJE CHANG’S PREVIOUS INCARNATION –
    (added 8 names see below)
    SHAKYA SHRI
    CHOKU OZER
    BUTON RINCHEN DRUB
    PANCHEN SONAM DRAGPA
    SONAM YESHE WANGPO
    SONAM GELEG PELSANG
    TULKU DRAGPA GYALTSEN

    A prayer to the incarnation lineage of Panchen Sonam Dragpa was written by Yongtzin Ling Rinpoche’s previous incarnation, Losang Lungtog Tenzin Trinley. His listing was the same as Panchen Chogyen’s except for the absence of three names and the addition of eight more. The names from Panchen Chokyi Gyaltsen’s list that did not appear in Kyabje Ling Rinpoche’s were Maghadha Zangmo, Bodhidharma, and Kunga Lodro. The names of incarnations he added to the list were:

    1) one who was a skilled captain who sat at the feet of Buddha Amitabha; 2) prince Tsondru Taye, Infinite Enthusiasm, son of king Sonam Metog, Merit Flower;
    3) one incarnation who received prophecy from the Dakinis that he would become Buddha Rabsel, the seventh Buddha of this fortunate eon;
    4) Master Singhabadra;
    5) a Brahmin boy who generated the universal altruism of bodhicitta by making an offering of a leaf from the Bodhi tree at Bodh Gaya;
    6) the supreme Master Vasubandhu,
    7) Akaramati, a disciple of Atisha; and
    8) a scholar at Sera Monastery who realized emptiness.

    The list is practically the same as Longdol Lama’s list of Buton Rinpoche’s incarnations of Indian and Tibetan upholders of the Teachings all the way up to Buton. He says,

    The one with furrowed brows who bestows supreme speech,
    Who bears the name ‘Sun of Teachers’, is the sixth…

    and,

    The disciple of Lhayi Sonam, Divine Merit, is the eighth,
    The one venerated by the mountain goddesses is the ninth,
    The one offered alms by the king of the nagas is the tenth,
    The glorious Dipamkara Shrijnana is the eleventh.

    Such differences as the fact that five of the incarnations on Longdol Lama’s list are not included in the prayer to the incarnations of Panchen Sonam Dragpa derive from the fact that one list is more extensive and the other is more condensed. Apart from that, they are not seen as contradictory.

    If anyone wonders that Dulzin Dragpa Gyaltsen is not listed in the author information and the prayer to the incarnation lineage, Dulzin Dragpa Gyaltsen was an emanation of the Master Gunaprabha as stated by Panchen Lobsang Chokyi Gyaltsen and confirmed in the realized visions of three other great scholar siddhas, while Panchen Sonam Dragpa said that he, himself, was an emanation of the Master Gunaprabha; so there is no need to remain in doubt.

    Great beings, after attaining the state of unexcelled transcendent wisdom that is the culmination of the qualities of abandonment and realization, the Dharmakaya that is said to be the fulfilment of their own welfare, for the sake of others, display their body and speech in accordance with the aspirations of trainees. This variegated display merely appears to be distinct forms but in actuality is not separate from the great bliss expanse of Dharmakaya. Any Buddha is the base of all emanations so there is no need to be narrow‐minded thinking that a certain emanation is one particular Buddha’s emanation and could not be the emanation of another. Also, it is quite possible that some who have not studied the scriptural tradition or have studied but without much discerning wisdom, might think that as long as the successive incarnations of a lama live at different times it is fine, but it is impossible for two of their incarnations to be alive simultaneously. In fact, it is not a problem because, as is said in Sutralankara,

    Just as immeasurable rays of the mandala
    Of the sun all mix together,
    Always engaged in the same work,
    That of illuminating the world,
    Likewise in the stainless sphere,
    Innumerable Buddhas mix together,
    Engaged in the same deeds,
    Illuminating transcendent wisdom.

    ————

    Cheyenne

  135. “With Reference to BUTON & DULZIN DRAGPA GYALTSEN having lifespan overlap & how Buddha’s can manifest many forms and don’t have to be linear but can be simultaneaous.”

    Emanations are one thing, incarnations i.e. asserting that one person is the incarnation of a pervious person are quite a different thing.

    If you pay attention the pious hagiographies penned by Tibetan disciples, there has never been one Lama in the entire history of Tibetan Buddhism that has not been the emanation of this Buddha or that Bodhisattva.

    This is just more conflated hyperbole which is totally irrational if taken too literally.

    And none of Trijiang Rinpoche’s arguments above form a proof that his claims are valid since there is no test for these claims. Such arguments amount to pious hearsay.

    The only way to validate these arguments is that validate the author of such claims as a valid authority.

    His Holiness the Dalai Lama has already negated the authority of this author on this question, again through reasoning and through citation.

    So if you wish to persist in this inane fantasy that a samaya breaking spirit is a Buddha, that’s your choice. But asserting that this damsri spirit’s incarnations begin in two of the most important founding Gurus of the Sakya school is completely unacceptable.

    As I already pointed out, we do not have tulkus of Shakyamuni Buddha, Padmasambhava, and so on.

    Why not just claim that Shugden is the emanation of Tsongkhapa? If indeed Shugden is an emanation of Manjushri, why not simply assert that Shugden is Tsongkhapa? Or is Tsongkhapa somehow too special to have an incarnation?

    In the end, one must accept that Tirijiang Rinpoche’s arguments are grounded in fantasies.

    N

  136. [Why not just claim that Shugden is the emanation of Tsongkhapa? If indeed Shugden is an emanation of Manjushri, why not simply assert that Shugden is Tsongkhapa?]

    Of course this is exactly what we do say!

    Tsongkhapa is an emanation of Manjushri.
    Dorje Shugden is an emanation of Manjushri
    Therefore Tsongkhapa & Dorje Shugden are both emanatons of Manjushri.

    The lineage tree of dorje shugden is meant to show how all these Guru’s, in the lineage, are also emanations of Manjushri. What is the fixation with Tulkus? we do not engage in the recognition of Tulkus.

    Cheyenne

  137. “The lineage tree of dorje shugden is meant to show how all these Guru’s, in the lineage, are also emanations of Manjushri.”

    What’s the purpose of mentioning them, if the intent is not to base Shugden is a serial iine of reincarnations? Why not include Jetsun Dragpa Gyaltsen, Longchenpa and other notable “emanations of Manjushri”?

    But obviously obviously Trijiang considers these masters to be a lineage of _reincarnations_. So your argument is unsound, and Trijiang Rinpoche’s account is merely a pious fiction meant to inspire the faithful, and both your and his accounts are not reliable, since as I have pointed out, there are no incarnations of Shakyamuni, Padmasambhava, etc.

    In order that people understand the fundamental flaw in all of your reasonings about these things, Sakya Pandita states:

    “There is nothing stopping poets
    from even praising ordinary geshes
    as being Buddha-like;
    but if explanations of the way things are
    and the confirmation of characteristics
    if explanations are not in accord with reality,
    what wise person will rejoice?”

    So, as I have said, here and elsewhere many times– you people mistake poetic hyperbole as facts, and thereby destroy the basis of your refuge by taking a wicked ghost that some poets in the past sought to appease through flattering his worldly vanity.

    N

  138. Should read:

    “taking a wicked ghost as a refuge that some poets in the past sought to appease through flattering his worldly vanity.”

  139. “arguments above form a proof that his claims are valid since there is no test for these claims.”

    what you sea is what you git unless what you sea is what you think you sea

    the test for real alley tea = if it smells like an alley and tastes like tea yer probably in the wrong nay boar hood.

    udderwise if pigs could fly they wood still need wingz.

  140. I have been a student of the NKT for a few years. The books and teachings are clear and I enjoy the company of my fellow Kadampas. These recent protests make me feel very uneasy. I was always told that the NKT don’t get involved in politics but now they are staging political demonstrations and writing to the media.

    I don’t really know much about whether Dorje Shugden is a Buddha or a daemon but it is clear from the discussion above that this issue is not nearly as clear cut as I was led to believe.I feel like I have been lied to and fed a false story just because I didn’t know enough to ask more questions.

    Most NKTers are sincere and try to do what is right, but I think those in positions of power might be playing the same kind of games you get in politics anywhere. The disappearance of Gen-La Samden and other senior teachers seems to have been managed much as New Labour manages bad publicity. There is no honesty.

    The way the people I know like my resident teacher is arranging these protests but they are supposed to be being organised by the WSS is also less than honest.

    Maybe the Dalai Lama is doing bad things in the Tibetan exile community, but given the amount I have been lied to by my NKT teachers, I can’t even take there word on that. And anyway why are we getting involved in what Geshe-la has already said is a Tibetan political issue? I’m too scared to ask these questions openly at my center. I know one person that did and he was asked to leave.

    The last straw came with the newkadampatruth website. I’ve seen similar sites like this run by Scientologists. Attacking critics and accusing them of having psychological problems is dispicable. Would the Kadampa Geshes of the past act like this? I really don’t think so.

    I don’t know what to do. I should of gone to the festival today but I really can’t bring myself to be in the same room as some of these people.

  141. Hi Robert –

    Welcome. I can completely understand your confusion and anger. Had I still been involved in the NKT when all this protest nonsense had started, I think that would have definitely pushed me out for the very reasons you describe above.

    For years I felt I was able to separate the teachings themselves from all the organizational nonsense. I came in and got my teachings and got out. However, through the years it felt like there was more and more pressure to give more of my time, money and energy to the center. And then, like many before and after, I burnt out and left. Leaving was not a horrible experience for me. I came out of the NKT with my faith and love for the dharma intact.

    I think it is awful that people are being thrown out of centers for asking questions about the protests. That sort of atmosphere of fear and intimidation does not belong in a dharma center.

    So, I guess you have some questions to ask yourself. Are you able to set some really strong boundaries and just go to class for the dharma and ignore all the other stuff? Do you still have enough respect for your teacher, knowing what you know now, to gain benefit from his/her teachings?

    There are online resources for former NKTers. There are two yahoo groups: New Kadampa Survivors, and Kadampa Buddhism. The former group is for people who have definitely decided the NKT is not the place for them. While it is valuable to read other people’s stories, there are members of the group who seem to me to be quite harsh. They firmly believe that the NKT is a cult and aren’t afraid to mock the organization and pretty much everyone in it. The other group, Kadampa Buddhism is a gentler group, with both people who are still in, but questioning as well as those who have chosen to leave.

    If you’ve paid for Festival, why not go for the teachings. I think it would even be worthwhile to voice your questions, concerns among your dharma buddies. I think you’ll find that you’re not alone in your concerns and questions. One of the things that really helped me when I left the organization was that I maintained contact with many of my dharma friends who understood my struggle, and who had been struggling themselves. It would have been a much tougher time if I had simply dropped out of sight and left my friends behind. Now, many of these friends accompany me to dharma teachings in different traditions, even though they are still involved themselves in the NKT.

    Good luck, Robert.

  142. “I think you’ll find that you’re not alone in your concerns and questions.”

    I wish I could say that sum won really nose watts at the bottom of all this ~ but eye m purty sure they aint wit the one possible x eception of Dorje Shugden his self.

    Nice Job LB cuz if any won thinks they iz alone in their questioning “WTF Mate?” then that is the only ‘real’ problem as far as eye kin tell = men E questions remain for many many hue man beans.

    maybe ‘Lumpy Rug’ should be the next topic? As fur as I kin sey it all boils down to makin a connection to the Dharma ~ how ever you can git that done.

    If fowks like Robert get the rug treatment then that kant be good ~ but on the udder hand since I M mitey sure no body is Mitey Sure about any of this then it seams to me the lumpy rug is about all there ever can be ~ peelin it back is gonna be a mess no matter how ya snortit.

    certainly uncertain is not a bad place to be = I reck-o-mend not takin any ovit as godspil on eyether side especially if theyiz tellin ya they nose how it ‘really’ iz. (the fence kinda sux 2 tho)

    doez enybody real eye x pect 2 S cape da first noble troot in any ov dis bizzyness?

  143. Hi Robert,

    I’m an NKT practioner and have a little experience on this matter. I have struggled personally with some things in the NKT, but gradually over the years i have learned that NKT is run by humans and therefore mistakes are often made. Dogmatic attitudes, narrowmindedness (is that a word? lol), you name it it can be found within the people of NKT. But i think that this happens in all spiritual traditions, buddhist and non-buddhist, perhaps because we are all attached to our own views. At the end of the day our mind percieves fault in whatever object it becomes familiar with. I’m not in particular trying to defend the NKT here, i think this is the same in any situation. And of course, just because the NKT appears ok to me it doesn’t mean it’s ok for everyone.

    The demonstrations aren’t of a political nature, but i can understand why they can seem a bit shocking. I was initially shocked when they began, but after doing some research and talking to sangha i started thinking that maybe they were ok. Now i stand for them because i believe that the dalai lama has made a serious mistake regarding DS.

    If you would like to talk my email is gandulsatva@yahoo.co.uk (if you contact me there i can give you my number or skype name). I try to be unbiased and to see the wider picture of the situation. I am sure most nkters would be happy to talk to you about it too. I think people respond in a defensive manner if we approach them in an aggressive way. If our approach is one of “i sincerely don’t understand this situation, can you explain to me what is happening?” i think most people will give you an honest warm reply. Of course some people are a bit silly and will get all uptight if you make questions. This is a very silly attitude, but i think it’s just a stage people go through. When i got into Dharma for a few years i was very dogmatic and narrow-minded, and did stupid things like trying to convert my family lol. But in time i learned to relax, and to stop grasping so much at “my” path and “my” tradition, etc… Now when i see close-minded attitudes in my sangha it also brings an uneasy feeling, but i try to see what i can learn from it and i try not to judge them for those moments of silliness but for their greater spiritual intentions, for example.

    All the best and good luck,
    Harry

  144. Well then = All who have yet to fear me shall sooon feel the rath of lash ~ or maybe that’s the rash on my ass . . . i kin never remember witch way thaz sposed 2 go

  145. Hi Robert,

    Sorry to say this but your story sounds oh so familiar.

    What to do……

    Well what would be the worst thing to do would be to go back to the NKT and get reprogrammed. Within no time you will be thinking …….

    ‘the faults i see – they are coming from my impure mind’

    And a few more years will go by and you will still see the same faults. Why? Not because of your impure mind but because the NKT will not have addressed any of their own internal problems and the evil enemy will still be the Dalai Lama.

    My advice – retreat to a healthy distance – examine the problems you have from there. Do whatever research you need to . Look into the history of Shugden from many different viewpoints. Check out other traditions. Reconnect with your own heart and what is true to you. Make up your own mind without influence…..

    And then when you feel strong enough – if you feel like returning to the NKT – then so be it – it will be your decision.

    But please do one thing – do not allow others to use ultimate truth (emptiness) to deny conventional truths. This is not dharma and leads to madness.

  146. juz look out for the muddle way know madder whoze pushinit butt avoid the 2 extremes = yer inherent views and the inherent views of udders ~ an agin wegotta sey = karma aint a bitch unless you got the scratchless itch…

    . . . the blue meanies are coming

    empty or knot theyez still gonna kickyerass
    suffering aint real butt it still hertz

  147. Without influence…?

    How do you check other traditions and other points of view on Shugden and then make up your own mind without influence? Is the intention of most of the anti-nkt sites, for example, not to influence? I would think the intention of the wss is to influence. When we talk about showing good or bad example, this directly refers to influencing people. Buddha and George Bush, for example, are two individuals who have had a lot of influence on the world. So i don’t think the problem lies in the actual influence but what kind of influence it is. More importantly one needs to check things like the motivation and wisdom of whomever they are reading or talking to. People with a good intention and some good sense are more likely to give a realistic and truthful insight into the matter. Of course it can be tricky to know people’s intention, but i think if the person is observed observed carefully this can become clearer.

    Harry

  148. Yeah Robert

    You and I are in the same boat. More or less. I feel the same way you do and these demos in particular have forced me to distance myself a bit from NKT events.

    Though I started at NKT, I’ve always been linked with the FPMT too. So that’s given me some perspective where others might have found themselves completely immersed in NKT think.

    I’m going to be clearing my head a bit, leaving FP for a time, and investigating other traditions.

    I personally feel that I owe the NKT a lot and am determined not to develop a hardline anti-NKT stance. It is a valid tradition, I have no doubt about that. It’s also made dharma so accessible for me, and from my experience, it becomes far less accessible once you start attending more Tibetan-orientated centres. I think my learning process will slow down in some ways, and will correct itself in others.

    Perhaps the NKT has the structure you need. But perhaps you’ll only know until you’ve examined life outside the NKT.

    I am open to the possibility that I’ll return. However, there are other factors I’ll need to consider for that to happen. Right now, it looks to me that the NKT is marching towards some kind of moment of reckoning. I’m not sure it will survive intact.

    I think the NKT will never be part of mainstream Tibetan Buddhism. It’s a New Religious Movement. The way it’s going now, I think it’s going to continue rapidly on it’s own quite separate trajectory.

    Keep well. Good luck.

    Ron

  149. Robert

    For the record, regarding the NKT and Scientology. In my experience, there’s no comparison between the two.

    I’ve said this before many times.

    My name is Ron. I was named after L Ron Hubbard. My father was a scientologist for my entire life. I was born in 1968 so this was way before it became a serious Hollywood trend.

    Scientology is seriously twisted. The NKT is very gentle by comparison.

    This is just my opinion. But I have been very involved with both organisatons, so I hope that indicates I have some insight into it.

    Regarding the NKT’s Truth website, I wish they weren’t adopting these tactics. However, it’s clear there is an internet war on and the NKT has been getting slaughtered.

    I don’t think this compares to the way the Church of Scientology has targeted its enemies. Not at all. Bear in mind that I think my mother may actually have been listed as an enemy of the church when I was young.

    Regarding Davcuts in particular, I have been reading his posts for years and have been seriously disturbed by some extremely unbalanced and unhealthy thinking, especially on his frequent eSangha rants. (Please go onto the pinned thread of the NKT and New Teachers New Beginnings and read these yourself.) However, perhaps the NKT might have approached this matter in a more compassionate way. I believe they did try. I don’t know for sure.

    I think the internet has changed the rules of engagement. Now anyone with access can yield an enormous influence on others and create enormous damage without necessarily being subject to any scrutiny or accontability. How do you manage that when it happens?

  150. look deep into the center of your heart ~ oops that’s the gallbladder – OK once again now ~ what was the question? o ya ~ is buddha a dorje or a shugden right?

    could be too boodahs in one? could be a woman at the door with a watchtower and a slow sermon ~ could be a man in a pork-pie hat with an axe to grind at the wrong address ~ could be ~ could be ~ KOOD BEEEEEEEEEE ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ? ?

  151. If you are followers of Lama Tsongkhapa you should follow Tsongkhapa’s advice on protectors. He stated that the three protectors of the Ganden/Gelug tradition are 6 Armed Mahakala (Chadrugpa), Kalarupa (Damchen Choegyal) and Vaishravana. These three protectors correspond to beings in each of the three scopes.

    Tsongkhapa’s writings and tradition are complete. It is amusing to me that those who claim they love Tsongkhapa’s teachings feel the need to rely on a deity never mentioned in his vast works to “protect the pure lineage”.

    It makes absolutely no sense at all. His Holiness the Dalai Lama is completely correct.

    For the protection of the Gelug lineage we should rely on the 3 protectors.

    For the protection of Tibet in general we should rely on the deities bound under oath to Guru Rinpochey.

    For the protection of the Tibetan Government in particular we should rely on Paldhen Lhamo.

    Shugden just doesn’t fit into the equation. It’s a practice that arose out of a dispute, and contains the energy and violence of that dispute. It has no place in the Buddhis pantheon.

  152. “Shugden just doesn’t fit into the equation. It’s a practice that arose out of a dispute, and contains the energy and violence of that dispute. It has no place in the Buddhis pantheon.”

    oh con trair moan frair ~ you must consult the hidden lineage to nose the really real truth – but perhaps you mere mortals lack the necessary equipment to perceive this deeply hidden object? Be Four Warned ! ! ! ! things are not as they appear ~ check the link below and all will be revealed to those with ‘true wisdom'(tm). Clearly the lineage real eyes up on Dorje Shugden ~ without question. Therefor your assertions only reveal your ignorance ~ question knot inda face ofda troot.

    http://thebookofnigel.blogspot.com/

  153. @Khedrup # 195. Thank you for offering facts and clarity. I can only confirm and sign what you said. Best wishes. Tenzin

  154. Khedrup/Tenzin

    I am not an expert on this. But since Phabongka introduced both Shugden and Vajrayogini practice to Gelugs, does that mean my Vajrayogini practice is also invalid? Vy was not a Gelug practice in Tsongkhapa’s system, as far as I know.

    And if it is valid, who should my protector be: Kinkara, or one of the three espeoused by Tsongkhapa.

  155. Dear Ron, no Vajrayogini practice is not invalid at all. It has the lineage which goes back to Naropa and it is coming from the Thirteen Golden Dharmas of the Sakya Tradition. It is ok to introduce different practices and teachings in one’s own tradition. There is nothing wrong with this. The criticism Pabongkha is faced with is, that he changed the importance of different Gelug practices. Moreover Shugden was no enlightened being when he was introduced by Pabongkha. An enlightened being is also not invoked by oracles. There are many unresolved issues in that context.

    As Dreyfus has put it:

    “Pabongkha suggests that he is the protector of the Gelug tradition, replacing the protectors appointed by Tsongkhapa himself. This impression is confirmed by one of the stories that Shugden’s partisans use to justify their claim. According to this story, the Dharma-king has left this world to retire in the pure land of Tushita having entrusted the protection of the Gelug tradition to Shugden. Thus, Shugden has become the main Gelug protector.”

    “Though Pabongkha was not particularly important by rank, he exercised a considerable influence through his very popular public teachings and his charismatic personality. Elder monks often mention the enchanting quality of his voice and the transformative power of his teachings. Pabongkha was also well served by his disciples, particularly the very gifted and versatile Trijang Rinpoche (khri byang rin po che, 1901-1983), a charismatic figure in his own right who became the present Dalai Lama’s tutor and exercised considerable influence over the Lhasa higher classes and the monastic elites of the three main Gelug monasteries around Lhasa. Another influential disciple was Tob-den La-ma (rtogs ldan bla ma), a stridently Gelug lama very active in disseminating Pabongkha’s teachings in Khams. Because of his own charisma and the qualities and influence of his disciples, Pabongkha had an enormous influence on the Gelug tradition that cannot be ignored in explaining the present conflict. He created a new understanding of the Gelug tradition focused on three elements: Vajrayogini as the main meditational deity (yi dam,), Shugden as the protector, and Pabongkha as the guru.”

    “Where Pabongkha was innovative was in making formerly secondary teachings widespread and central to the Gelug tradition and claiming that they represented the essence of Tsongkhapa’s teaching. This pattern, which is typical of a revival movement, also holds true for Pabongkha’s wide diffusion, particularly at the end of his life, of the practice of Dorje Shugden as the central protector of the Gelug tradition. Whereas previously Shugden seems to have been a relatively minor protector in the Gelug tradition, Pabongkha made him into one of the main protectors of the tradition. In this way, he founded a new and distinct way of conceiving the teachings of the Gelug tradition that is central to the “Shugden Affair.”

    Regarding your protectors, Kinkara is fine for Vajrayogini and the Gelug protectors, as taught by Tsongkhapa, are: Mahakala, Vaishravana and Kalarupa.

  156. “Let’s say another reason I don’t practice Shugden is that I’ve taken refuge in the three jewels. Indeed, I took refuge at an FPMT centre where I promised explicitly not to take refuge in anything that might be a worldly spirit, even if people told me it was a buddha (a direct inference to Shugden, no doubt). So if in doubt I’m committed to taking the safe option.”

    -Ron, I’m curious as to how you avoid Shugden practice if you attend NKT centres. Do you avoid attending Wishfulfilling Jewel (where he is propitiated)? If so, how do you explain to your fellow NKTers why you are not attending daily WFJ? This is not a criticism as I attend an NKT centre and tried to avoid Shugden practice but don’t see any easy way of doing it. Thanks.

  157. Hi Bloof

    Asked and answered. You asked this question earlier and I answered it.

    It’s not easy not practicing Shugden with all the peer pressure to do so at NKT. But I’m glad you’ve raised this question again.

    Recently, on the Kadampa Chat forum I asked if there were others like me out there who were regular NKTers but did not practice Shugden. I was very surprised to find I was actually the only one. At least, out of the 190 or so members on that site, no one else came up and identified themselves as “non-DS NKTers” despite my repeated requests. A huge debate ensued and it was clear that everyone was most surprised that it was possible not to practice Shugden in the NKT. They were even more shocked to discover that I’ve been doing this at FP level for two and a half years. It also became clear that I could not expect an awful amount of support or sympathy when it came to trying to protect my right not to practice Shugden in the NKT.

    In other words, in NKT terms, I seem to be a real oddball. I explain my ability to do this by the fact that I am just that sort of person. I don’t care what people think really and I’ve always been one to do my own thing.

    The only answer I can give you is that my sangha community (including my RT) knows I don’t do Shugden. This is accepted there. I think they’re just glad I do get so much out of the dharma teachings I receive there. I think they’re all delighted I’ve lasted this long, because the fact is I’ve been a bit of a challenge from day one. I’m somewhat of a non-conformist and not as compliant as the others. However, they’ve been glad to have me. Of course, I’ve no doubt they’d have been far happier if I relented and started practicing Shugden.

    I don’t do WFJ, and I’m quite open about that. However, I do do Quick Path to Great Bliss, and am vurtually the only regular member in that puja, which the residents appreciate I think.

    So it is possible to get your dharma at the NKT, and not to do Shugden. I’m glad there are people like you out there who are trying to find a “middle way” on this issue in the NKT, as I have tried.

    I’d like to make it clear that nowhere in GKG’s books has it ever been said that practicing Shugden is mandatory, even if you choose to make GKG your guru. Indeed, in Guide to Dakini Land, GKG explicity says (I paraphrase)…You should choose a dharma protector. People often choose the dharma protector of their spiritual guide, but that’s not required. By the way, my dharma protector happens to be Dorje Shugden.

    In other words, it’s up to you entirely.

    A cautionary note, though. My approach has its limits. For instance, though I’m accepted at the NKT, it’s clear I’ll never be asked to teach in the NKT, and I’ll probably not progress up to TTP level. But in most other respects, I’m a fully fledged member of the community.

    However, for the moment, following the demonstrations, I have had to reconsider my position. I have decided to leave FP and to make closer connections with other traditions.

    That’s my story.

    I have got a lot out of the NKT and I’m not sure I want to completely divorce myself from them. I have friends there. However, like you, I have decided that Shugden is not for me, so it’s natural that I start looking around at other traditions.

    I’ve always had some link with FPMT and will probably start attending more classes there. I want to continue my Vajrayogini practice and may decide to pop into the NKT for the odd puga on that.

    But we’ll see.

    Good luck with your practice. Don’t let anyone compel you to something you’re not comfortable with doing.

    Ron

  158. Hi Bloofs

    To reiterate: I avoid Wishfulfilling Jewel Pujas. I do attend Lama Choepa (Spriritual Guide) pujas twice a month but keep quiet during the Heart jewel sections. I attend Quick Path to Great Bliss, as I think DS practice is negligible there (of course, that’s only applicable if you have HYT empowerments). DS is mentioned in Quick Path but as one of a range of dharmapalas. I am probably going to start relying on Kinkara for that, but as yet have not relied on any protector. I don’t do Melodious Drum or Kangso. Otherwise, nothing else is off limits for me in the NKT. During retreats (Vajrasattva or Lam Rim, say) they do sometimes include heart jewel in the last session, so I try to avoid that one, and go to the earlier sessions. It’s a bit tricky doing all this avoidant stuff, but it does mean I focus on those practices I think are really worthwhile – Lam Rim and Vajrayogini for me. And I have made quick progress in my time there. I have found GKG’s presentation of the dharma very clear and easy to absorb.

    Ron

  159. karma baby ~ or maybe a randoom avatar generator ~ oar maybe the werk of a ratful day eatery ?

    seams like we could find a raison but watt wood that x plain?

    the homo genisis of dis whole corn versation seams to revolve around x plain ashuns fur experience udder than hour own ~ personal eye find it helpful to own my udder experiences cuz if eye don’t den who will and who is not to be trusted.

  160. Ron – sorry if that’s the second time I asked you this question – I honestly can’t remember doing that.

    I think you have a lot of courage to do what you are doing. I’m not sure I do – I have certainly tried keeping quiet during the Shugden bits of pujas and hoping that will keep me safe – but I’m sure anti-NKTers will tell me this is not enough and I am polluted and infected by Shugden nontheless. Certain Christians would say the whole thing is devil worship anyway.

    I did once while meditating in a shrine room at a centre have an intense vision of Shugden stepping down from the shrine and leering at me with his three eyes and sharp fangs, but I’m pretty certain this is my imagination running wild.

    As I have said in other posts, I’m not sure the concept of Dharma Protectors fits onto my believability radar at all, so a part of me is insulated from this. Tibetan Buddhism does kinda remind me of Catholicism in a lot of ways, call Dharma Protectors ‘angels’ and you see what I mean.

    “Hells, Bells and Smells” as my old history teacher used to describe Catholicism and it seems to apply here too!

  161. “There are plenty of injustices in the world, and as NKT-ers, we were never encouraged to engaged in compassionate political actions. Yet, here with the Shugden issue, leaders with the NKT are out there with bullhorns and raised fists”

    -LB, this is exactly what has always slightly disturbed me about the NKT. They don’t seem to do much if any charity or philanthropic work, apart from collecting in order to build more temples. And I’m not saying they have to get involved in Tibetan charity, just, I dunno go out and feed the homeless in Cumbria or something (at least).

    Heck, even Scientologists have been known to do charity work.

  162. Hi Bloofs

    You and me are pretty much on the same page. I’m a sceptic on that too. I guess the main reason I’ve never wanted to do Dorje Shugden is that it isolates me from other buddhists. It’s not that deep down I really believe it’s harmful. And yeah – I know what you mean about the charity thing. I do pro bono work for the Salvation Army and, though I don’t relate to their christian perspective at all, those guys seem to be the real thing. They are true bodhisattvas.

  163. “I guess the main reason I’ve never wanted to do Dorje Shugden is that it isolates me from other buddhists.”

    Yeah, exactly. Being in the NKT kind of does that for you anyway! lol…

  164. Speeches on the Ban of Gelugpa Protector Dorje Shugden by Tibetan Leaders, the Dalai Lama and the current minister of the Government of Tibet in Exile, Samdong.

    Their speeches show evidence regarding the ban on Dorje Shugden practice.

    This discloses their emphasis on segregation, as well as the division of the monasteries and the Tibetan community in exile.

    This also presents how the Dalai Lama is disturbing the harmony of the Tibetans in exile.

    The speeches show that the ban is created by the Dalai Lama, not by the monasteries.

    This proves that the Dalai Lama and his government enforce the ban, and control the actions taken by the monasteries in India…

    …which is also having a negative effect on communities in Tibet and around the world.

    Dalai Lama: “Today in the presence of the staff members of our government, and our people, my topic is on the Protector. But this is not a meeting about our freedom-struggle policy.”

    Dalai Lama: “Today we meet here for a very specific reason, I think only we are meeting regarding this subject, I think other people in the world are not meeting about this topic.”

    Dalai Lama: “I mentioned before at the last Kalachakra festival when we gathered. We are all gathering here: Lamas, Geshes and Dharma friends. I tell you this issue is very important and you must enforce what I say.”

    Dalai Lama: “Otherwise if you think: ‘something like this is the Dalai Lama’s responsibility not mind, I don’t care as long as I receive offerings.’ Then that way of thinking is wrong. Understood?”

    Dalai Lama: “And in the same way you can explain this issue to the people in Tibet if you have any relatives left over there. Such as Dakyap, Markham, Chamdo and Denma-Khampa…”

    Dalai Lama: “…to all these regions, you must inform them very well, this is your responsibility to explain to those in Tibet. Understood?”

    Dalai Lama: “Otherwise here I am saying something and you show me a very respectful attitude, but in reality you don’t focus on explaining the ban to others, then it’s very disappointing for me. Understood?”

    Dalai Lama: “Many of you understand the reason and stopped practicing. But a few of you seem to not have heard my advice, and pretend that you don’t know anything about it.”

    Dalai Lama: “And maybe you feel it is not serious and that it will be okay afterwards. Also you may think that the Dalai Lama in exile cannot do much about this, some of you think this way.”

    Dalai Lama: “I began this ban to continue the Fifth Dalai Lama’s legacy, I started this by myself and I have to continue, and carry it to the end. Understood?”

    Dalai Lama: “Some of you are not serious, but this is wrong. You, staff members, pretend not to hear anything, and you let time go by. You think it is better that we don’t take action against people.”

    Dalai Lama: “When we have met each other you showed a pleasant attitude, and said to me “I am clean and not practicing anymore,” but actually this is deceitful. This is likely to continue to happen.”

    Dalai Lama: “In Sera Je monastery some student voluntarily look responsibly and are working on enforcing the ban. This is very good.”

    Dalai Lama: “You should take this as an example, and support each other. This is very important.”

    Dalai Lama: “Once I mentioned at Drepung, while I was teaching on the Lamrim’s Great Scope, about the ban to practice.”

    Dalai Lama: “During that time there were many abbots from all monasteries attending the teachings. Kelsang Yeshi, you were there, do you remember?”

    Dalai Lama: “The abbots from the monasteries of Sera, Drepung, Ganden, as well as the tantric colleges of Gyuto and Gyume were there. Totally there were about fifteen representatives there. So they came to see me, crying, and promised me strongly to follow my request.”

    Dalai Lama: “But in reality they didn’t do anything, so now the end result is not that good.”

    Samdong: “The situation of Dhogyal [Dorje Shugden] has become very particular in our Gelug sect, therefore the Gelugpas must pay attention to this.”

    Samdong: “Even if His Holiness hadn’t been clear in his speech, he already mentioned this topic very clearly many times recently and in the past years – as a father gives advice to his son.”

    Samdong: “On this topic, we have to take some clear action. Otherwise, if we don’t act because we think that this ban is going to create a lot of different problems in our society, and fearing segregation within our society—then I think this is wrong.”

    Samdong: “But the important thing here is that if we do not implement this ban as advised but rather we fall into doubts about our capacity and judgements…”

    Samdong: “…and if we fail to fulfill and support the wishes and advice of His Holiness, then I think this would be very sad for us. So I have no doubt that you are not going to forget this request, but keep it in mind.”

    Samdong:”The abbots, disciplinary leaders, and administrators of the monasteries, are facing this problem. And they are patiently going through this ban enforcement.”

    Samdong: “And I know each one of you who works hard for the ban, and I appreciate this very much. I am happy that you voluntarily support and take action. This is very good.”

    Samdong: “Some of you are trying to be tactful about this enforcement, and you may think that any action will disturb the harmony of this society. Some of you may have a reason to stay calm and tactful, I can’t comment on this.”

    Samdong: “But those who act clearly and seriously, we are always rejoicing on your actions. Whatever you need to have from our government in exile, we are ready to provide any kind of support. I wanted to explain these things.”

  165. WHY NOT JUST KILL HIM AND LET HIM BE FORGOTTEN?

    “They can bury me in earth, drown me in water, burn me in fire but they cannot destroy what is not object to destruction. Do not worry – soon the sun will shine.”

    One of the reasons why Tibetan Buddhism is so famous and respected is because of the powerful antidotes to black magic and evil spirits that are part of its repertoire. Where all else fails, it prevails. When Yamantaka comes, there is no spirit that doesn’t run screaming. If it gets really bad and the Lamas see the spirit cannot be tamed, they will perform a puja during which they ritually kill the evil spirit, dissolving it into the realm of absolute reality to keep it from collecting further negative karma by continuing its harmful activity. There is absolutely no spirit that cannot be subdued by an attained master – if we believe there is we are saying is that demons are stronger than Buddhas! Confusion prevails over enlightenment, since when?…

    So a very intriguing question to ask is:

    If Dorje Shugden a) is a malevolent, unenlightened spirit, and b) the Tibetan government, HH the Dalai Lama etc really wish to stop his practice and have him erased from our collective memory, why don’t they just kill him?

    It would kill two birds with one stone:

    a) Who wants to pray to a dead deity? The practice would stop automatically and immediately.

    b) Who remembers a dead deity that nobody practices? Soon, nobody…

    What did those find out who indeed believed Dorje Shugden to be an angry spirit at first, and tried to destroy him with wrathful pujas? That he can’t be killed. And what does that tell us? That he is not a spirit at all, but a supramundane being. Thus, the great fifth Dalai Lama wrote the following verses in the spirit of recognition and reconciliation:

    HUM
    Though unmoving from the sphere of primordial spontaneity,
    With wrathful turbulent power, swifter than lightning,
    Endowed with heroic courage to judge good and bad,
    I invite you with faith, please come to this place!

    Robes of a monk, crown adorned with rhinocerous leather hat,
    Right hand holds an ornate club, left holds a human heart,
    Riding various mounts such as nagas and garudas,
    Who subdues the mamo’s of the charnal grounds, praise to you!

    Samaya substances, offerings and torma, outer, inner and secret,
    Favorite visual offerings and various objects are arranged.
    Although, previously, my wishes were a bit dense,
    Do not stop your powerful apparitions, I reveal and confess!

    Now respectfully praising with body, speech, and mind,
    For us, the masters, disciples, benefactors and entourages,
    Provide the good and avert the bad!
    Bring increase like the waxing moon in spiritual and temporal realms!

    Moreover, swiftly accomplishing all wishes,
    According to our prayers, bestow the supreme effortlessly!
    And like the jewel that bestows all wishes,
    Always protect us with the Three Jewels!

    Kyabje Trijang Dorje Chang remarks:

    “Even the composition of this short praise and propitiation brought benefit. Thus, although undisputed great Tantric masters tried to subdue him by burning him in the fire through their rituals, his display of miraculous power only grew greater, and it is in regard to this that he is being praised in this verse.”

    In recent times again, such an attempt was again made and Dorje Shugden was declared ‘dead’. The very next day, he took trance and said this:

    “They can bury me in earth,
    drown me in water,
    burn me in fire
    but they cannot destroy
    what is not object to destruction.
    Do not worry – soon the sun will shine.”

    If you have witnessed the great King Protector communicate through an oracle you have noticed the sacred presence of bodhicitta energy that inspires humility and gratitude. May we too be soon embodiments of universal transcendent compassion.

  166. VAJRAYOGINI AND GYALCHEN DORJE SHUGDEN, BLESSED TRANSFORMATIVE YIDAM AND PROTECTOR OF THE NUCLEAR AGE

    “The practice of analytic meditation should begin with the topic of how to serve a spiritual teacher.

    If you contemplate skillfully for about seven days the benefits of serving a teacher and for about seven days also the faults of failing to serve a teacher, you will produce a mental transformation.

    ……

    You must bring forth the realization which perceives that your Guru is truly a Buddha. And since this very topic is much more crucial than all the others, devote yourself to it with great effort.”

    (HH PABONGKHA DECHEN NYINGPO)

    During the earthly life of Guru Buddha Shakyamuni it was relatively easy to gain attainments; at times, thousands attained arhatship simultaneously while attending the Blessed One’s discourses. In our day, the distraction in our minds caused by unbridled greed and hatred is so overwhelming that just living an ethically sound life is a great feat. Indeed, the Buddha has said that to live as a nun or monk for a day in our era would equal an entire life of an ordained person who was his contemporary. By that example we can see just how intensely different the odds are between then and now. It’s as if we walked from a sleepy village square straight into Las Vegas , or from convent school to an underground rave party, popping pills with mad hatters. It is very hard not to go with the flow that is really a torrential wave of heavy karma temptation. If we can get through the day without breaking our mother’s heart it’s heroic, on the exoteric level.

    Esoterically, the tantric methods of transmutation instead of avoidance or repression become more and more relevant as we progress rapidly towards the finale furioso of this Kali Yuga or Dark Age. And thus, reliance on the ‘Three Roots’ – Guru, Yidam and Protector becomes crucial, the principal one of the three being, of course, the Guru, while Yidam and Protector are the attainment and activity aspects of the Guru’s holy mind and emanated as his blessings.

    Only the tiniest fraction of today’s practitioners live in monastic surroundings or are otherwise blessed with the leisure and determination to practice the enormously complex and time-consuming sadhanas of Yamantaka, Heruka and Guyasamaja, the classic practices of the Gelukpa school.

    Heruka Pabongkha Rinpoche, with perfect clairvoyance, foresight and compassion, recommended to make Vajrayogini our main Yidam, whose practice is shorter, easier to do yet as profound and increasing in power as afflictive emotions and degeneration increase in the time period we find ourselves now. He, in direct communion with Vajrayogini, who was Manjushri Je Tsongkhapa’s secret heart Yidam, composed the condensed sadhana that we are blessed to practice today. To think about this is one way that ordinary beings like us can appreciate the unfathomable kindness and wisdom of His Holiness Pabongkhapa.

    How does all this relate to Gyalchen Dorje Shugden, whom Kyabje Pabongkha recommended as our main Protector? In terms of Yidams –

    “Although you outwardly exhibit the haughty manner of a terrifier to conquer enemies of Lozang the Victor’s teachings, you are, in nature, that very Manjushri Yamantaka; with the supreme, unsurpassed devotion.”

    and

    “Although your aggregates, elements, spheres and limbs appear as the five families of Shugden, principal and entourage, they are actually the thirty-two deities of Guyasamaja’s body mandala.”

    So, together with Vajrayogini, Heruka’s consort, we have the three classical Yidams complete again.

    In terms of Dharma Protectors – just like Vajrayogini is the crystallized essence of all holy Yidams, so is Dorje Shugden the Vajra Heart of all holy Guardians of the Dharma, perfectly arising in our collective awareness at this time of greatest need.

    Just like Vajrayogini, even if one does her practice imperfectly but recites her mantra with faith and deep Guru devotion, bestows great attainments, the great King Protector likewise helps miraculously if we strive to transform our minds sincerely, based on surrendering the self-cherishing mind at the feet of our Lama.

  167. [“I guess the main reason I’ve never wanted to do Dorje Shugden is that it isolates me from other buddhists.”

    Yeah, exactly. Being in the NKT kind of does that for you anyway! lol…]

    Do you want to be non isolated from other ‘Buddhist’ or do you want to join ‘with’ all Buddhas, for the benefit of all (including other Buddhists)

    Guru, Yidam, Protector, the three legged stool.

    Take one leg away, the stoo; falls over.

  168. every bodeez got an opinion and they all . . . well you no

    best thing I’ve read on n e ov dese bogs yet =

    “There is absolutely no spirit that cannot be subdued by an attained master – if we believe there is [then what] we are saying is that demons are stronger than Buddhas! Confusion prevails over enlightenment, since when?…”

    so then a protector by any udder name wood smell as sweeeet eh?

  169. “If you have witnessed the great King Protector communicate through an oracle”

    Wisdom protectors do not communicate through oracles; only worldly protectors do so.

  170. “Guru, Yidam, Protector, the three legged stool.

    Take one leg away, the stoo; falls over.”

    It’s silly to think that Shugden was ever the leg in the Vajrayogini practice. Even GKG does not make it mandatory in the old days.

    “For me, Dorje Shugden is the great Protector of the Guru’s words and I use the fifth torma as an offering to him. The following sepcial verse for offering the torma to Dorje Shugden can be added to the prayers immediately after the verse to the Kinkara Protectors” (p.196, Guide to Dakini Land)

    What happens now?

  171. the three legs of the stool are practices of; 1 guru, 2 yidam, 3 protector -1 lama chopa, 2 vajrayogini / heruka, 3 kangso (wishfullfilling jewel).

  172. “Well, I guess I’ve been levitating then”.

    who is it that is levitating?
    who’s mind are you using to levitate?

    Are you using the mind of the Guru?

    who is navigating your journey, is it you?
    or is it you protector, who’s function is to clear the path of karmic obstructions.

  173. for us (if we are Gelugpas) the path consists of three principle aspects & the two tantric stages.

    Renunciation, bodhichita, the correct view of emptiness and the two tantric stages (generation & completion stages).

    we practice the first three in conjunction with two latter two stages, the union of sutra & tantra, at taught by Je Tsongkhapa.

    Tantra will never work without realisations of the three principle aspects , plus the accumulation of a collection of merit & a collection of wisdom. the first three stges are the foundation of the latter two stages.

    the mind of the Guru (guru yoga) is our guide (not our own deluded mind) the protecter is the navigator who will clear the path of obsacles and help us to gain realisations of three principle aspects. the yidam is the final vehicle (completion stage) by which we attain enlightenment having accumulated a vast amont of merit & wisdom.

    Dorje Shugden is manifest wrathfull wisdom (our guru), Kinkara is manifest wrathfull widom (our yidam). both are manifestaions of omnicient wisdom to protect our practice (same person, two aspects).

    Sutra & Tantra are integral on Je Tsongkhapas path(s).

    Wrathfull wisdom (our guru), wrathfull widom (our yidam) are nessessary to the successfull navigation of these integral paths of sutra & tantra.

  174. last time i heard, there are only three protectors assigned to the three scopes by Je Tshongkhapa.

    pl. read post# 195

    you really need to show me where Dorje Shugden is ever mentioned in Tsongkhapa’s writings..

    Best

    Shaza

  175. Hi Cheyenne,

    I really don’t see what the problem is with Ron’s lack of wish to practice DS. You have your path, he has his. If he is happy with what he has why pester him into something he doesn’t want?

    Hello Shaza,

    DS is not mentioned in any of JT’s works. Nobody is saying that he is. However, according to KG Mahakala is the same nature as Manjushri, so in essence they are the same (according to KG).

    Harry

  176. Hi Harry:

    Six armed Mahakala (which comes originally from the Shangpa Kagyu lineage) is an emanation of Avalokiteshvara– this is very well known.

  177. Namdrol,

    Please forgive me for not knowing the very well known! Actually no, thanks for pointing that out, i read something briefly in the book Heart Jewel by KG and i think i was a bit precipitated in posting something i didn’t research properly. I think maybe it was another protector, maybe Kalarupa i’m not sure.

    Hi Shaza,

    Sorry looks like i may be wrong on that one. I’ll see if i can do a some homework and get back to you.

    Peace,

    Harry

  178. Okay Cheyenne

    Thanks for that information.

    My tantra practice is still in it’s infancy.

    The information I have (from Guide to Dakini Land) as well as other practitioners (both in NKT and elsewhere) is that I am not required to choose the protector of my guru. So I haven’t. I have not yet selected a protector yet.

    Fortunately, my tantric commitments allow me to maintain my commitments simply through the wish to one day practice perfectly. And I do have that intention. Of course, I am not yet practicing perfectly.

  179. from post 212

    —-

    Heruka Pabongkha Rinpoche, with perfect clairvoyance, foresight and compassion, recommended to make Vajrayogini our main Yidam, whose practice is shorter, easier to do yet as profound and increasing in power as afflictive emotions and degeneration increase in the time period we find ourselves now.

    He, in direct communion with Vajrayogini, who was Manjushri Je Tsongkhapa’s secret heart Yidam, composed the condensed sadhana that we are blessed to practice today. To think about this is one way that ordinary beings like us can appreciate the unfathomable kindness and wisdom of His Holiness Pabongkhapa.

    How does all this relate to Gyalchen Dorje Shugden, whom Kyabje Pabongkha recommended as our main Protector? In terms of Yidams –

    “Although you outwardly exhibit the haughty manner of a terrifier to conquer enemies of Lozang the Victor’s teachings, you are, in nature, that very Manjushri Yamantaka; with the supreme, unsurpassed devotion.”

    —-

    The trend of emphasizing humility and keeping one’s samaya commitments pure continued with Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen (Duldzin literally means ‘holder of vows’). He was very close to Je Tsongkhapa and his first Gelugpa disciple, with Khedrupje and Gyaltsapje coming from the Sakya tradition.

    Although both master and student were Manjushri-emanations, they worked in their relative aspects to show an example of humble practice. In this way they helped Lord Manjushri’s instructions, which Tsongkhapa received through direct communion, to reach many people. Duldzin Drakpa did everything to help in creating good conditions for these teachings to spread.

    It was him who undertook the building of Gaden Monastery. He also built his own temple for Kunrik practice near Gaden and took care of the Monastery when Lama Tsongkhapa was away.

    After Je Lama’s passing he was offered the Gaden throne but preferred to remain in the background to clear obstacles and prepare the way for the flow of Dharma.

    While Je Tsongkhapa was giving a Dharma discourse, Nechung appeared to Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen in the form of a white dove, urging him to manifest as a protector of Je Tsongkhapa’s teachings who are so sublime and precious that a special protector is needed to guard and further them in this world.

    Nechung repeated his request to Duldzin Drakpa Gyaltsen’s subsequent incarnations and during the time of Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen approached again, asking him if he remembered his promise. Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen replied that since there was no anger in his mindstream, how could he manifest the wrathful energy of a Dharma protector? Thus the event of strangulation was displayed with bodhicitta motivation, enabling the enlightened being Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen to manifest wrath at the moment of death and to emerge in this way as the transcendent supramundane Dharmapala Gyalchen Dorje Shugden.

    Since killing a bodhisattva is nonetheless a very grave event, the elements reacted violently, and various strange occurrences took place for some time.

    Dorje Shugden has played a major role in bringing the Buddhadharma from Tibet into the world, as we will see, and will continue so on a global scale.

    —–

    Kalarupa & Dorje Shugden are both wrathfull aspects of wisdom buddha Manjushri.

    in degenerate times (as in now) we who practice the teachings of je tsongkhapa have a stonger karmic connection with dorje shugden (rather than kalarupa) and also with vajroyogina as our yidam.

    vajroyogina & heruka are inseaparably one and are aspects of the union of the mind of bliss & emtiness. in this context bliss is commpassion & emtiness is wisdom, therefore heruka is buddha of commpassion, vajoyagini is buddha of wisdom (in tantra male aspect is compassion femail aspect is wisdom) they are union of wisdom & compasion.

    so in this context vajrayogini & dorje shugden are aspects of omnicient wisdom appearing as yidam & protector for practicioners in degenerate times who have little merit & time.

    guru is je tsongkhapa who is vajradhara (difinitive Guru) who is also heruka.

    Vajradhara is primordial buddha the resultant purified omnicient wisdom arising from our buddha nature.

  180. “Thus the event of strangulation was displayed with bodhicitta motivation, enabling the enlightened being Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen to manifest wrath at the moment of death and to emerge in this way as the transcendent supramundane Dharmapala Gyalchen Dorje Shugden.”

    You can pain shit gold, but it still smells just as bad.

  181. “You can pain shit gold, but it still smells just as bad.”

    Does this apply to the Buddha’s previous incarnation where as a Boddhisatva he killed a guy who planned to kill 500 people? And to the countless other accounts in which wrath was used by attained masters?

  182. According to Trijang, Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen remembered his promise and orchestrated his own death with the help of Nechung so that he can arise as Shugden :

    “Accordingly, going back to the last vision for a moment, not only had he received the command and commitment from his direct and lineage gurus such as Je Tsongkhapa who were of the sae mental continuum as the Arhat Upagupta, it is also pleased him to hear it in the words of exhortation from that Protector of the Four Places, the Dharma King Nechung, and he had a vision of arising as a lord of the wrathful ones with an entourage of wrathful spirits and wrathful offerings. Yet his wish to arise as a protector of Je Tsongkhapa’s teachings and the opportunity of the circumstances that would converge between the Great Fifth Dalai Lama and Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen, who were two great beings like the sun and the moon, seemed remote at the time. How quickly the commitments joined as one, he was enthroned, and so forth, as a great powerful wrathful protector of the Geden teachings, can generate conviction, as well.

    When strangled with the scarf by those evil‐minded ones,

    Through the force of bodhicitta you arose as an overlord of wrathful ones,

    And, day and night, with various terrifying manifestations,

    Frightened even the courageous, praise to you!

    Then, when he remembered his previous promise, he went to Pehar’s temple and said to the Dharma King Nechung, ‘Now I remember my previous promise, so what should I do?’ The Dharmapala said, ‘I can perform the activities to take care of that!’ Soon after that, emanations of the Dharma King Nechung, hosts of travelers from all over, including many from Kham, eastern Tibet, came to Lhasa and sought audience and made offerings to Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen at the upper residence, in numbers that seemed to eclipse even those seeking audience with the Great Fifth Dalai Lama. The Dalai Lama’s Ganden Palace was referred to as the lower residence and Dragpa Gyaltsen’s Palace was referred to as the uppe residence and people were talking as if the upper and lower residences of Drepung were practically equal in stature. Moreover, in the center of the rows of monks attending the great offering and prayer festival of Lhasa they made Dragpa Gyaltsen’s thron higher than the Dalai Lama’s. By this and other various means, Desi Sonam Chöpel and other attendants at the Ganden Palace were made unbearably jealous and sought a chance to kill Dragpa Gyltsen. The auspicious time for Dragpa Gyaltsen’s promise to be fulfilled had also arrived so, when he was thirty‐eight, on the twenty‐fifth day of the fourth month of the fire monkey year, he pretended a sudden illness which he said was due to ‘nyen’ spirits and made his preparations. On the thirteenth of the fifth month, Desi Sonam Chopel’s brother named Depa Norbu or Nangso Norbu, in league with the evil Desi, under pretext of illness, came secretly to where Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen was staying in the large bedroom of the house where he was born, called ‘ga kha sa pa’xxviii, with the intention of killing him. No matter how hard he tried to stab him with his weapon, however, it would not penetrate the skin, so he stuffed a silk scarf down his throat until he died.”

    (p.93ff, Music Delighting the Ocean of Protectors)

  183. “You can paint shit gold, but it still smells just as bad”

    to an accomplished one, shit and gold are the nature of, & merely arisings from, the supreme mind of bliss and emptiness, the nature of heruka.

  184. Harry:

    “Does this apply to the Buddha’s previous incarnation where as a Boddhisatva he killed a guy who planned to kill 500 people?”

    This karma of the bodhisattva ripened when the Buddha stepped on an acacia thorn.

    Cheyenne:

    Are you claiming that have that realization? And if not, what is the point of making this statement?

  185. “Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen remembered his promise and orchestrated his own death with the help of Nechung so that he can arise as Shugden.”

    Doesn’t this strike anyone as more than a little bizarre? Suicides, murders, when are you Dolgyal people going to wise up?

    N

  186. Yeah Namdrol,

    It’s actually quite embarrassing, every other day someone in the NKT gets possessed by the evil spirit and takes their own life. And of course wherever a group of DS practitioners reside the murder count goes way up. LOL!!!

  187. “Doesn’t this strike anyone as more than a little bizarre? Suicides, murders, when are you Dolgyal people going to wise up?”

    -People are plenty irrational Namdrol, doesn’t mean Shugden exists.

  188. ‘Are you claiming that have that realization? And if not, what is the point of making this statement?’

    I am not claiming any realisations here, you can only know your own mind and unless you are a Buddha you cannot know who is who isn’t a Buddha.

    the point of the statement is – shit only smells to an impure mind.

    you made the statement ‘ You can paint shit gold, but it still smells just as bad’ with regard to the appearence of strangulation of a bodhisattva. this appearence is ordinary only to an ordinary mind.

    with regard to the statement to ‘an accomplished one, shit and gold are the nature of, & merely arisings from, the supreme mind of bliss and emptiness, the nature of heruka’. You don’t have to have a pure mind to realise this, but you do need faith in Buddha Vajradhara.

  189. “you made the statement ‘ You can paint shit gold, but it still smells just as bad’ with regard to the appearence of strangulation of a bodhisattva. this appearence is ordinary only to an ordinary mind.”

    The idea that Dragpa Gyaltsen arranged his own suicide with Nechung’s assistance in order to become a protector is nothing more and nothing less than a delusional fantasy and a complete and total fabrication.

  190. ‘The idea that Dragpa Gyaltsen arranged his own suicide with Nechung’s assistance in order to become a protector is nothing more and nothing less than a delusional fantasy and a complete and total fabrication.’

    Are YOU claiming that have that realization? And if not, what is the point of making this statement?’

  191. One does not need to be realized in order to understand the difference between what is Dharma and what is simply patent nonsense.

    The assertion of your school that Dragpa Gyaltsen arranged his own suicide with Nechung’s assistance in order to become a protector is such an obvious delusion, that only someone similarly deluded would accept its veracity.

    Such assertions merely provide more evidence for the totally unsound nature of relying on Shugden, just one more in a series of totally outlandish and far-fetched claims that Shugden practitioners use to impress the gullible into accepting this mistaken practice as valid.

  192. Wanting to impress the gullible is a human trait.

    There are people with this trait on both sides of the issue it would seem.

    Some will say that HH and co are trying to impress the gullible. Some will say it is the WSS and family.

    I think certain individuals from each side are both working hard at this, but i try not to blame entire groups of people. I try to listen to the honest people on both sides and make up my own mind.

  193. ” I try to listen to the honest people on both sides and make up my own mind.”

    People on the Shugden side are honestly deluded by their teachers. Unfortunatey for the honest people on the Shugden side, they have been fed lies and distortions by their teachers. Thus, what they broadcast, with honest intentions, are those very same lies and distortions. This is compounded by a complete lack of knowledge of the history of this deity, an objective assessment of the textual tradition of this deity, and a lack of means to critically evaluate the information they are being given.

    To repeat, there is no mention of Shugden in the tantras; no mention of Shugden in the sutra, no mention of Shugden by Tsongkhapa. Shugden is the ghost of a Lama that met a bad end. That is the nature of your anti-dharmapala, a ghost.

  194. Well it’s a good thing that i do try and listen to opposing views. I’ll be fine, Namdrol. I recite Migtsema prayers a lot in my centre too so in any case i’m protected against Shugden anyway, right?

  195. “…in any case i’m protected against Shugden anyway.”

    No, since your refuge is broken through regarding this ghost to be a Buddha.

  196. Just an honest mistake right? How does this unintentional mistake damage so much my refuge in other Buddhas?

    How come the DL broke his refuge then, for 40 years? Break seems a heavy term in Buddhism. If our refuge is so heinously damaged what about the DL?

  197. I can’t believe your always slagging off the WSS and NKT for disseminating propaganda. You’ve tried to sell me some right tabloid nonsense quite a few times on here.

  198. “How come the DL broke his refuge then, for 40 years?”

    He didn’t.

    HHDL started doing torma offerings to Dhogyal in 1954. He stopped in 1974.

    He never received any empowerment for Dholgyal, ever.

    Also His Holiness made some slight error in following the advice of Trijiang Rinpoche about Shugden. However, as Sakya Pandita points out:

    “However much he may mistake the path, one who has eyes will never step over a precipice. In the same way, even though he may make mistakes, a learned person cannot stray beyond the bounds of the Buddha’s doctrines.

    But if one who is sightless takes a wrong path,
    he will plunge over the edge and fall.
    So, too, if an ignorant person goes wrong, he passes
    beyond Buddhism and plummets downward.”

    That Harry, is the difference between His Holiness, the Dalai Lama, and you. After careful study, His Holiness learned that practicing Shugden was a mistake. You have not learned that practicing Shugden is a mistake. He is sighted, but you are blind.

    N

  199. “You’ve tried to sell me some right tabloid nonsense quite a few times on here.”

    No, Harry- I am not selling you anything. I am simply telling you that your devotion to Shugden is mistaken. Sapan again wisely states:

    “It is possible for certain demons of this kind
    to assume the form of humans or Saints and then to teach–
    after mixing their false teachings with the essentials of the Doctrine–
    in order to propagate a wrong doctrine.”

    I on the other hand, Harry, merely point out that this practice is not known in Sutra, not known in Tantra, and and so on. I do not have some new fangled protector practice to try and defend and validate (despite all common sense). Shugden practice is a contaminate, a poison, mixed with the Dharma. Poison food is impossible to detoxify, the only thing that can be done with it is to throw it away, and but fresh food from the market.

    N

  200. We’re on a road to nowhere,
    come on inside,
    taking that ride to nowhere,
    we’ll take ride,
    feeling okay this morning
    and you know,
    we’re on the road to paradise
    here we go
    here we go.

    There’s a city in my mind,
    come along and take that ride
    and it’s alright,
    baby it’s alright.

    And it’s very far away
    but it’s growing day by day
    and it’s alright,
    baby it’s alright.

    I could tell you what to do
    but I’d make a fool of you
    and it’s alright,
    baby it’s alright.

    Perhaps you’d like to come along,
    maybe help me sing this song,
    and it’s alright,
    baby ti’s alright.

    We’re on a road to nowhere,
    come on inside,
    taking that ride to nowhere,
    we’ll take ride,
    feeling okay this morning
    and you know,
    we’re on the road to paradise
    here we go
    here we go.

  201. Hi Harry

    It’s nothing incredible about the “40 years” lie from WSS/NKT.

    But it is incredible that people really believe it.

    http://www.westernshugdensociety.org/en/protesting/dalai-lama-stop-lying

    “The Dalai Lama himself was trained in this tradition, and for 40 years relied upon Dorje Shugden, even composing a prayer of his own praising Dorje Shugden and requesting his help. Then, suddenly in 1975 he abandoned the practice because he had ‘discovered’ Dorje Shugden was a harmful spirit! ”

    It just doesn’t add up. Dalai Lama was born in 1935. He would have to start worshipping from the crib in order to make it on time.

    Simple arithmetics.

    Best

    Shaza

  202. The 14th Dalai Lama is the reincarnation of the 13th Dalai Lama, who banned Shugden practice. It sure took a while before he came to see Shugden in the same light (40 years in this lifetime). Clearly, it must have been the Dalai Lama’s karma to practice Shugden until 1975. He must surely have picked up this potential while one of the earlier DL’s (most likely while as the 13th, if there’s a karmic connection to Dorje Shugden; or possibly while as the fifth) and this must have ripened with his unwilling (ignorant) propitiation of Shugden – a being he later concluded was a ghost. (Let’s face it, that’s not great karma if Shugden actually is a ghost).

    However, while that negative (or positive) karma has ripened, it has not yet been exhausted. Clearly. As it is still ripening in quite a significant way for the Dalai Lama – in London, Sydney, New York, France, Nuremberg, etc.

    As it is for all of us.

    Whether he’s a buddha, a ghost, or an irrelevant mythic entity, it seems highly likely that we all have some dodgy karma related to Shugden. And that includes the anti-Shugdenites here.

    I could just be talking out of my arse, of course, but then don’t we all.

  203. one lama two lame three lama four
    wit all dem lamas who kuld ax four more
    and with all dem kidz runnin a round ~ house n e body gonna kept traka all dat?

    eye sez = if the lama fitz where it ~ an dat ghoez dubble fur me arse

  204. “It is possible for certain demons of this kind
    to assume the form of humans or Saints and then to teach–
    after mixing their false teachings with the essentials of the Doctrine–
    in order to propagate a wrong doctrine.”

    sew then HH kud be DS is de-skies by dis logic eh?

  205. “sew then HH kud be DS is de-skies by dis logic eh?…”

    No, I am pretty sure it is talking about people who fabricate things like Shugden, which have no basis in sutra or tantra.

    N

  206. Hi Tenzin

    My comment:

    To me it seems that you’re not really concerned about religious fundamentalism in Buddhism. If you were, your article would have provided a broad-based overview encompassing the wide number of ‘fundamentalist’ buddhist groups out there. As it is, this article is a finely-tuned attack on the New Kadampa Tradition. It poses as a neutral, academic look at ‘fundamentalism’, but fails at that level. It’s pseudo-academic at best.

    Largely, it was a thorough article. But it’s far from neutral, and I certainly hope it’s glaring inconsistencies and obvious conceits aren’t overlooked. There are too many for me to address, but I will tackle three here.

    1)
    Thurman’s comment that Shugdenites are the ‘Taliban’ of Buddhism. This is truly a nasty thing to say and more than anything else has put me off supporting the rigorous and mindless orthodoxy of those who support the Dalai Lama’s position. I think it comes from the mindset that the Dalai Lama is infallible and therefore any organisation that finds itself in opposition to his edicts is regressive, narrow-minded and ativistic. This particular ‘Taliban’ statement was made in the late 1990s and has never been substantiated, yet it is employed over and over again by people seeking to tarnish the New Kadampa Tradition for propaganda purposes. People who believe it are clearly inclined to ignore the irrationality of statements like this. Thurman may have a reputation as an academic, but he should be as subject to scrutiny as anyone else. How are Shugdenites like the Taliban? Please elucidate clearly. If you can’t – please refrain from employing this form of character assassination. And just by quoting this without questioning it, you are endorsing it.

    2)
    Your supporting statements come from the Dalai Lama, whom the NKT stands in opposition to precisely because of the points of view he espouses. Therefore the point of view they reflect is not credible and not neutral, does not further debate, and simply reinforces the existing status quo. Ergo, the entire article is practically useless to anyone looking for new insights into this dispute. You have simply reiterated existing dogmas, and since we’re all familiar with your efforts, for me personally reading what you have had to say here has been a profound waste of time.

    3)
    Your article creates the impression that Shugdenites are not interested in dialogue. Though I am not involved in these demonstrations, it has been made clear that they are actually an effort to force dialogue. In fact, it is Dalai Lama that is not engaging in dialogue on this issue. The Dalai Lama continues to avoid dialogue. Far from his assertion that people should ‘listen’, in fact he has not responded to the grievances made, despite ongoing requests that he do so. These are not recent requests – they stem all they back to the open letter by Kelsang Gyatso to the Dalai Lama in the late 1990s. This is available on the internet and it’s disappointing that you did not feel it necessary to make note of it in your article. This might have helped to convince me and others that you were interested in providing a balanced understanding of the Shugden debate.

    4)
    Time and again, the kalama sutta is brought up as a justification for the Dalai Lama’s position on enforcing his ban on Dorje Shugen. To me, this seems disingenious, and the fact that his supporters accept this rationale is telling, to say the least. The Kalama Sutta is a perfectly good piece of advice to people on methods they should follow in judging whether to accept a teacher or teaching, or not. It was certainly not given as a rationale to inflict one’s point of view on others. In that sense, like all buddhadharma, the kalama sutta is to be applied personally, after personal reflection, not to be used as a political tool to tell others how they should behave or practice. Indeed, it would seem to me that the kalama sutta, in spirit, is exactly opposed to the kind of use it’s been put to in determining policy on Dorje Shugden.

    As I said, your article has many holes and I simply don’t have the time to plug every one of them. Hopefully, however, I have drawn attention to some of the flaws in the views you’ve put forward here.

    Kind Regards
    Ron

  207. Hello Namdrol, Tenzin etc

    Can you refute Ron Cook’s 6 reasons below for me please – which show how the Dalai Lama is not even a Buddhist?

    If you can then I will stop practising Dorje Shugden….

    The Dalai Lama abandoned even being a Dharma student when he repudiated his own root guru – “undoubtedly his most important guru” – in his own words.

    Truth seekers read on…………

    When a person assumes the role of a religious authority and leader it is incumbent upon him or her to show exemplary behavior. Such a person should understand that they will be seen by many to be a role model, and should know full well that their actions will be emulated. In fact, such a person defines what it means to be a practitioner of that particular belief system. They should also understand that their actions will be scrutinized by others. Therefore, their moral discipline should be flawless or at the very least they should make a strong effort to avoid as much as possible, any negative actions. They should be particularly mindful not to engage in actions that could easily be misconstrued. They should also scrupulously adhere to the doctrine and tenets of their faith. Supposedly such a person would be elevated to such a position precisely because they have all the necessary qualifications. Supposedly they would possess the uncommon attributes, experience, and wisdom to guide and council those seeking to practice that spiritual tradition.
    If one takes the time to investigate the actions of the Dalai Lama we find that he lacks all of the above qualities. He has shown again and again to be an extremely poor example of not only what it means to be a qualified spiritual leader, but what it means to be an ordained person. His example if emulated, will lead to the swift destruction of Buddhism in this world. If the leader does not practice the basic teachings of the faith, how can he be considered to be an adherent of that faith?

    1) Abandoning Buddhist refuge
    To be a Buddhist one must take refuge in the Three Jewels – Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha. Refuge is a practice that is based in developing deep faith, and understands the good qualities of the objects of refuge. A Buddhist believes the Three Jewels to be the supreme objects of refuge, and takes a vow to seek ultimate refuge exclusively in them.
    The Dalai Lama chose to ban the spiritual practice of Dorje Shugden. Among the reasons cited for this ban was the advice of the Nechung Oracle. The oracle is a person who ‘channels’ a spirit. Nechung is recognized by everyone including the Dalai Lama to be a worldly being of the spirit realm. The Dalai Lama consistently relies upon oracles and divination to make important religious and political decisions.
    In his autobiography, Freedom in Exile, the Dalai Lama writes:
    “For hundreds of years now, it has been traditional for the Dalai Lama, and the Government, to consult Nechung during the New Year festivals. In addition, he might well be called upon at other times if either have specific queries. I myself have dealings with him several times a year. This may sound far-fetched to twentieth-century western readers. Even some Tibetans, mostly those who consider themselves ‘progressive’, have misgivings about my continued use of this ancient method of intelligence gathering.”
    None of these practices of reliance were taught by Buddha and are in direct contradiction to the refuge vows. Never has the Dalai Lama said that his decision to ban the practice of Dorje Shugden came from the blessings and advice of enlightened beings. His reasons have all been derived from the opinions of ordinary beings. Although he claims two previous Dalai Lamas and other high Lamas as reliable sources for implementing the ban they cannot be considered reliable sources. This is because if they were realized beings they would understand that it is impossible for them or their disciples to be harmed by the practice of Dorje Shugden. Buddha taught that one of the benefits of refuge is protection from harm from others. This is also one of the principal benefits of relying on a qualified Spiritual Guide. If we assume that Dorje Shugden is harmful, how could a sincere Dharma practitioner experience suffering? The fears of these high Lamas and of the Dalai Lamas indicate either they do not have any faith in Buddhadharma, or that they do not put Dharma into practice correctly. Therefore, their opinion is unreliable. The whole practice of relying upon oracles and divination comes from the Bon religion. This is a religion that was widely practiced in Tibet prior to the introduction of Buddhism. How can the Dalai Lama be considered a Buddhist if he practices Bon rituals?

    2) Abandoning reliance upon the Spiritual Guide
    The root of the spiritual path according to Buddha’s teachings is complete faith and reliance upon one’s Spiritual Guide. This practice has been demonstrated by all the previous accomplished Masters throughout Buddhist history. They all taught such reliance to their disciples, who in turn did the same.
    In the traditional prayer practice called Lama Chopa it says:
    “The Guru is Buddha,
    The Guru is Dharma,
    The Guru is also Sangha,
    The Guru is the source of all joys”
    The meaning is that the Guru is a manifestation of Buddha Shakyamuni. The second line means that he is the embodiment of the realizations of the stages of the path to enlightenment. The third line means that through putting his instructions into practice causes sentient beings to attain supreme results. Therefore, the Guru is the source of all joys.
    The fourteenth Dalai Lama has repudiated his Spiritual Guide and the lineage of his Spiritual Guide, stating unequivocally that they were “all wrong” for practicing Dorje Shugden. He has deleted the names of his Spiritual Guide (Trijang Rinpoche) and lineage Gurus from sadhanas, books, and teachings. This action of deleting the names of lineage gurus demonstrates without any doubt that he is not a Buddhist. It is a direct attack on Buddhadharma. Moreover, it has been his wish since 1960 to merge all four schools of Tibetan Buddhism into one. His real intention is to destroy all existing lineages and establish the Dalai Lama(s) as the sole holder(s) of Buddha’s teachings.

    3) Abandoning sentient beings
    If one were to ask a Buddhist to synthesize the meaning of their faith into a single word, they would most likely say that it is compassion. Specifically, it is universal compassion. Universal compassion is the substantial cause of enlightenment. Needless to say it is possessed by all enlightened beings. On the other hand, the Dalai Lama has clearly demonstrated that he completely lacks compassion. For more than 12 years he has refused to acknowledge the suffering that has been the result of his ban on Dorje Shugden. When confronted with the evidence of violence he dismisses it as “rumors.” Any compassionate leader would at the very least immediately renounce the violence and agree to investigate the matter for themselves.
    The fact that he does neither indicates that has broken the basic Bodhisattva vow never to abandon sentient beings. His actions show that he does not consider the suffering he has created to be actual suffering.
    No practioner of Dorje Shugden is allowed to attend any of his teachings or other spiritual ceremonies. They are also banned from being employed or holding any position within the Tibetan government in exile, or be considered to hold the status of a person of authentic Tibetan origin. They are not even considered to be a Buddhist practioner. As the leader of the Tibetan government in exile it is he that has personally instituted these additional bans.
    Abandoning any sentient being is a cause for all of the good qualities one possesses to degenerate. Sadly, many of the followers of the Dalai Lama have emulated his actions.
    The Dalai Lama’s absence of compassion, the very essence of Buddhadharma, shows he is not a practicing Buddhist.

    4) Committing one of the five heinous actions
    These are: killing one’s father; killing one’s mother; killing a Foe Destroyer; maliciously wounding a Buddha; or causing a schism within the Sangha. It is this last action that the Dalai Lama is guilty of. The Dalai Lama has caused one of greatest divisions in Buddhism since its inception. It has caused the whole of the Buddhist world to choose which side of the issue to follow. It has caused disharmony to erupt within families, communities, traditions, and between lay and ordained people. Even if the Dalai Lama were to suddenly renounced his ban, the wound that has been created between all these groups would persist for a long time.
    On July 14th 1996, in Caux Switzerland the Dalai Lama said:
    “Everyone who is affiliated with the Tibetan society of the Ganden Phodrang government (Tibetan government), should relinquish ties with Dhogyal. This is necessary since it poses danger to the religious and temporal situation of Tibet. As for foreigners, it makes no difference to us if they walk with their feet up and their head down. We have taught Dharma to them, not they to us…
    Until now you have a very good job on this issue. Hereafter also, continue this policy in a clever way. We should do it in such a way to ensure that in future generations not even the name of Dhogyal is remembered.”
    Note: Dhogyal is a derogatory term for Dorje Shugden.
    The above statement reveals a calculated and malicious plan crafted by the Dalai Lama. Since the time of the 5th Dalai Lama the whole institution of Dalai Lamas has been the source of repeated division, oppression, and violence towards anyone who opposes them. As the leader of Tibetan Buddhists the Dalai Lama should possess both a superior understanding of Buddhadharma and practice of Buddhadharma. From the above statement we can understand that he has deliberately instigated the schism within Buddhism, and therefore is defying Buddha’s teachings. So how can he be considered a Buddhist?
    Using perverse logic some have argued that it is those who oppose the Dalai Lama’s ban, that are guilty of committing the heinous action of causing a schism. This is analogous to an arsonist setting fire to a building, and a witness to this action begins yelling to warn others of the danger of the fire. Consequently, the witness is blamed for setting the fire!

    5) Linking the survival of Buddhism with the survival of Tibet
    The entity that is Tibet, either within China or as a sovereign state is a political construct. The function of politics is to improve samsara (cyclic existence) for oneself or for a group of people. More often than not this ‘improvement’ of samsara comes at the expense of others. China’s invasion of Tibet was illegal, immoral, and completely uncalled for, but this issue has nothing to do with the survival of Dharma. The function of Buddhadharma is to destroy samsara for oneself and others, to permanently escape the unending suffering of ordinary existence. Therefore, politics and Buddhadharma are mutually exclusive from the point of view of their ultimate objectives. It is true that basic political freedoms such as the freedom to practice the religion of your choice are necessary conditions for Dharma to survive. However, these conditions exist in many other countries around the world.
    Mandala Magazine, interview with the Dalai Lama (July/Aug. 1995, p.9):
    “The freedom of Tibet and the teachings of Buddhism have a strong relationship. They are strongly connected, because if Tibet is able to achieve true and authentic self-government, the Buddhadharma will be able to survive… If this doesn’t turn out to be possible then the teachings won’t survive.”
    So why is the Dalai Lama making this ridiculous linkage of the survival of Tibet with the survival of Dharma? There can only be one reason, he is a political leader without a country. He craves the establishment of a geopolitical state from which he can operate, thus endowing himself with even greater control and influence.
    Why does he insist on trying to be both a religious leader and a political leader? There can only be one reason, he is intoxicated with maintaining and increasing his power and control over others. His actions are all indicative of a desperate and egotistical ruler. In the final analysis, his mixing politics with Buddhism is a clear contradiction to, and mockery of Buddha’s teachings. Again, how can he be considered to be a Buddhist?

    6) Destroying the meaning of Buddhist ordination
    The basic motivation for ordination is the mind of renunciation. Renunciation when fully developed is a mind of complete non-attachment. Non-attachment is a wisdom that understands that external objects, (people, places, and things) do not cause our feelings.
    It is the delusion of desirous attachment (the belief that certain external phenomena are the cause and source of our pleasant feelings) that binds us tightly to suffering.
    In the late 1990’s the Dalai Lama appeared in an advertisement for Apple Computers in its “Think Different” campaign. Explicitly his action is telling us to develop desirous attachment for a computer. This is such an obvious and egregious violation of Buddha’s teachings. Implicitly it shows that it is acceptable for ordained people to prostitute themselves for the sake of consumerism and for the sake of samsara. In 1992 he appeared as a guest editor for the French Vogue fashion magazine. Again, what is the meaning of this action both explicitly and implicitly?
    The Dalai Lama has often attended frivolous Hollywood parties and other celebrity driven events. He frequently meets with world leaders to discuss politics. He enjoys a lavish samsaric lifestyle. He always appears at these events wearing the robes of a monk.
    These are not the actions of an authentic ordained Buddhist monk or Buddhist leader.
    Conclusion
    Far from showing the exemplary behavior of a religious leader, the Dalai Lama shows what it means to be a degenerate spiritual practitioner. In reality, his collective actions have the function of destroying Buddhism in this world. Therefore the Dalai Lama is not a Buddhist.

    Ron Cook

    Thank you Ron…from shugdenpa

  208. This is why I’ve changed my name to wisdomjunkie. There are far too many Rons in the world. It goes without saying that not all of them have my approval.

  209. I noticed Namdrol speaking up in this debate. Here’s an old post from Khyenrab in the 1990’s to which Namdrol never replied. It looks to me like this Namdrol has had about 10yrs to think about this so maybe he can post an answer now?

    Otherwise he should stop his cyber attacks like the ones above. It is clear that because he has no answer to posts like these (that are telling the truth) he has stopped all debate on the E-Sangha website a long time ago – he only allows attacks of Shugden people.

    Tenzin Peljor does exactly the same on his own blog – pretends to debate but actually does this only very selectively and ignores anything for which he has no proper answer.

    I post this in its original format – I made a record of this at the time – but I’m sure you can search the “dejanews” etc and find the original if you like:

    “Do Sakyas rely upon Dorje Shugden?

    Hello Namdrol, here’s a few observations on some of your recent posts on the issue of whether or not some Sakyas rely on Dorje Shugden as an enlightened Protector of the Dharma.

    You said:

    >No Sakya Lama has ever taught that Shugden is enlightened >Protector. This is what Sakya Trizin says, and additionally, >what my teacher says, who was resident at Sakya Monastery >in Rajpur/Derhadun as the Secretary of the
    >Sakya order between 1982-1989.

    I asked a few people to lend their knowledge to this debate. Although I’m not quoting my sources I can tell you they’ve been in Tibetan Buddhism for up to 20 years, know many Lamas, lived in India, speak Tibetan etc. In other words, I take them as authoritative.

    One of them told me the following:

    “In his talk in 1978 the present Dalai Lama repeated as a ‘common story’ that a throne-holder of the Sakya tradition developed a connection with Dorje Shugden. I (that’s my friend) understand that this was the 17th century Dagchen Dorje Chang Sonam Rinchen. Sakya masters at that time
    such as Sakya Dagchen Kunga Lodo (Sachen Kunlo) and Morchen Dorje Chang also wrote sadhanas which have been practised within the Sakya Tradition since then. Dorje Shugden, in particular in the aspect of riding a black horse, has been a Dharma Protector of the Sakya Tradition from that time until now.

    Because of the pressure of the Dalai Lama’s government this practice has now been suppressed within the Sakya Tradition. However, according to one oracle of Dorje Shugden, Kuten Choyang Duldzin, many Sakya Lamas – including the father of the present Sakya Trizin – relied on Dorje Shugden and requested advice from the Dorje Shugden oracle, including
    advice concerning the present Sakya Trizin.

    Many people have stated that they have been present during Shugden pujas with Sakya Lamas including Sakya Trizin in the Sakya Temple in Mussourie, India. In Lo, Nepal, they do (or did) an annual Dorje Shugden dance, and according to eye-witness accounts Chogye Trichen the Teacher of both Sakya Rinpoche and the Dalai Lama, offers a katag to the dancer. The eye-witness account said the abbot of Lo Monastery told him that in Tibet, in Samye, they used to perform a dance with 32 dancers representing the 32 Deities of the Dorje Shugden Mandala plus dancers representing Pehar and Tsemara.
    But nowadays they only have one dancer.”

    So this is one account that differs from your view. Who should we believe?
    Also you quoted from an old post by Losang last year where he said:

    >”Even when I visited Geshe Kelsang’s nephew in the Sakya >monastery in Rajpur I found that they relied upon Dorje >Shugden as an enlightened Protector.”

    In response to this you said:

    >Nonsense. rTa.nag is not considered to be a enlightened protector by the Sakyapa, I ought to know, I studied in the Sakya tradition for eight years.

    Namdrol, were your eight years prior to 1978 by any chance? How can you be certain that Sakya teachings since then haven’t undergone revision in light of the Dalai Lama’s view? How do you know written records eg sadhana booklets weren’t destroyed? And how can you be sure that you studied
    everything in the Sakya tradition in those 8 years?

    Again you quote:

    >prayers and offerings to him which were in essence the >same as those offered to Mahakala who all schools believe to >be an enlightened being. I

    Your response:

    >How can you possibly know this? You don’t know Tibetan.

    Sorry, Namdrol, but Losang does know Tibetan. Although I can’t
    read that language I know of several Western Dorje Shugden practitioners who can read and speak it. And then there are Tibetan practitioners who can also read and speak English.

    Again you quoted:

    >aspect except that he was riding a horse. Perhaps it is only >when he rides a snow lion that he becomes harmfull! I was so >surprized when I later heard the Sakyapas saying that they >only gave Dorje Shugden cakes so that he would not get >angry with them. I notice on the Sakya calander that they no
    >longer practice Dorje Shugden. If they truly believed he was >such a demonic being and feared him so much then why do >they not continue to appease him with cakes? I believe it is >the tibetan politicians that they fear more than Dorje >Shugden. His Holiness Sakya Trinzen spent a large part of his
    >time at this monastery so surely he knows the real situation.”

    And then you said:

    >Yes, Sakya Trizin is my root Guru. He maintains that Shugden >is a) harmful b) mundane. The fact is that Shugden is deity >practice in Sakya mainly by the Khon family in Sakya >monastery proper. The Ngorpas and the Tharpas
    >have never adopted this practice.

    Perhaps I could put forward the following ideas here. There are 3 possible explanations:

    1.You are lying
    2. Sakya Trizin is lying
    3. There are two ways of regarding Dorje Shugden in the Sakya lineage – openly and secretly.

    Then as both you and Sakya Trizin are Buddhists and would not lie, we have to conclude that the third is the only reasonable explanation for the differences between us on this matter.

    Also, can you say for sure that Sakya Trizin has never explained to any of his other disciples a different way of perceiving Dorje Shugden? Are you omniscient? Namdrol, you may know a lot but I suspect you do not know everything. Or are you claiming to be enlightened?

    As a great Teacher, Sakya Trizin would explain what is most
    beneficial according to the karmic connections of each of his students. Even Buddha himself taught in this way.

    You also said:

    >BY claiming a Sakyapa origin for your views, you are in effect
    >misrepresenting and attacking Sakya.

    No-one here is attacking Sakya. Relax. We are telling you what our lineage gurus have explained to us.

    You also said:

    >Anyone who has studied in the Sakya tradition knows that >Gorampa did not believe that Tsongkhapa’s visions of >Manjushri were authentic. Why? Because
    >in Gorampa’s opinion, Tsongkhapa’s explanations of Buddhism >were incorrect, and therefor, his “Manjushri”, from whom >Tsongkhapa credits with all of his insights, must have been a >mara. This is not sectarian– this is one scholar criticizing and >passing judgements on another scholar.

    Then what does Gorampa think of Buddha Shakyamuni’s prediction that a boy living at that time, an emanation of Manjushri, would become a monk called Losang Dragpa (Tsongkhapa’s ordained name) at a place called Ganden? Does Gorampa think that Buddha made a mistake? Does
    Gorampa not accept Buddha’s endorsement that Tsongkhapa is, in fact, an emanation of Manjushri?

    Namdrol, why should written records, even Tibetan ones, be such an authoritative source of knowledge? People can write down anything – that does not make it a truth. Oral lineages remain oral because there’s no karma for them to be written down. It doesn’t mean that they are wrong. Buddha himself and his immediate disciples maintained only oral lineages.

    BTW another friend told me that one of the high Sakya Lamas
    said directly that there was/is a line of Sakyas that secretly rely
    upon Dorje Shugden as an enlightened Protector but this person didn’t wish to be quoted publicly. Why not? In the current climate in Tibetan Buddhism does that question really need an answer? Why should a high Sakya lama rely secretly? Why do people not want to be quoted publicly? Why are we having this debate?

    Khyenrab”

    I wonder if wisdomjunkie finds this level of debate is increasing his wisdom?

    Certainly I find it fascinating and it shows the debate about Dorje Shugden and the controversial 14th Dalai Lama is much more profound that most people understand with their knee-jerk reactions.

    Maybe, just maybe, in the future, when we have the “eye-of-time” looking at this situation, the facts will get sorted from the propaganda. Where, I wonder, are the historians interested in the truth? Where are the journalists interested in the truth – it is there for the looking….

    The evidence for the Dalai Lama’s repression is accumulating all the time – and it cannot be “wiped out” (to use his own uncharming expression) – or deleted.

  210. Why have you taken so long to come forward with this information when this debate has been raging for months on this blog alone? In fact, it’s been raging for years, and I have acqainted myself with the back catalogues and pinned threads at eSangha. Your story is indeed interesting, as it certainly counters Namdrol’s assertions on Sakya and Shugden, so why haven’t I seen it there? I am as interested as anyone else in the background to this. I am a member of the NKT. But if you allow Namdrol’s interpretation of events to stand uncontested here and elsewhere, and you have insights none of us have , you have only yourself to blame if we’ve forced to accept Namdrol’s account.

    What you have said is beyond me as I don’t have the background in Tibetan history required. I don’t have the background in Tibetan. I don’t have the background in its oral history. Which means responsibility for correcting misapprehensions on matters like these rests largely with people like you.

    If you don’t want knee-jerk reactions from me, don’t post bile.

  211. Oh, and regarding the “background” you lack….that is your responsibility not mine. Get educated – if you really are addicted to wisdom and not just fooling with a name.

    I am a Shugdenpa.

  212. Hey Shugdenpa,

    Take it easy, you’ve just come barging in with demands for people to refute your posts. I think Khyenrab’s refutations of Namdrol’s post is fantastic, but perhaps you need to review your attitude a little. I am also a Shugdenpa (NKT), but i’m not so sure about the new demand tactics being used upon Thurman et company.

    Tenzin’s recent response to Ron Cook seemed a bit overly defensive, but it’s not all that surprising considering the slight “blackmail note” that Cook’s post had. I didn’t agree with TP, he really blew the blackmail thing out of proportion, and went on to attack the whole of WSS and NKT using that pretext. But i also don’t agree with people saying: “If you don’t answer me i will assume you are a liar, etc…”

  213. Hello Harry

    I am afraid that the stakes are much higher than attention to small politenesses on this blog….Tenzin Peljor is big on politeness and short on truth.

    Because the Dalai Lama has publicly lied now many people like Tenzin, Namdrol etc. feel empowered to repeat these lies endlessly and destroy faith in our gurus. I take this very personally. It is a personal attack on my heart.

    The Dalai Lama has had the gall to call people like me Nazis because we follow Shugden and are faithful to our lineage gurus. He is trying to destroy my spiritual life and he is not going to succeed.

    His smearing/ slandering/inciting works in the closed tibetan community – the peer pressure is huge as you can see from the France24 and Swiss and German videos – and it is spreading in western countries too. How? Through people like Thurman.

    A university professor like Thurman should know better than defaming and slandering people (to their face by the way – not just in the Press). His wife recently told an NKT a nun of many years she “needed to learn some Dharma” or words to that effect. Huge intellectual arrogance empowering them to name-call “Taliban” etc. “Chinese backed”, etc. and give credence to these lies of the Dalai Lama.

    If he cannot refute the claims he has made then – you have to call a spade a spade you know – he is a liar like his teacher. This is an important point to establish. He is not telling people the truth. He is lying and this is immensely damaging.

    I am trying to spread some clarity – you seem to be more interested in tactics rather than Dharma truth – if you don’t mind me saying so.

    If you read the Dalai Lama’s speeches to the monasteries, abbots etc. he is not being gentle or polite. He is being threatening and abusive frankly – and yet western people remain hypnotised by the spell of the myth of the Dalai Lama unable to see behind the mask.

    There is nothing wrong with asking people to respond within a certain deadline. It happens every day. It is normal.

  214. Shugdenpa

    I’m not hostile to you. I’m very interested in what you have to say. And I agree with some of it.

    So it’s all good. From my point of view.

    However, I do find Ron Cook’s tone offensive.

    Still, he’s entitled to say what he wants. But he must expect people to react in kind if he does want to take an agressive stance. That’s all.

    wjouldn’t it be nice if we all got along. Or at least tried. Aren’t we buddhists?

  215. By the way, Shugdenpa, backtrack a little and read a recent post by Ron in response to Tenzin. (perhaps a week or so ago). It also addresses Thurman’s quote. Ron and Wisdomjunkie are one and the same. So it seems your views and mine are the same on most points. So there’s no point in getting into a tussle. We’re both essentially trying to stand up for truth and tolerance.

  216. Hello wisdomjunkie

    What about the Dalai Lama’s tone? Any remarks about that from you?

    As I said previously there were no problems like this before the Dalai Lama’s illegal and unecessary ban. This is important to remember. Getting out of samsara is hard enough without being persecuted by other Buddhists for trying!

    I like Ron Cook’s tone because he’s not kowtowing to the mythical Dalai Lama but simply telling it like it is…just like journalists should be doing.

    Anyhow I have nothing further to add right now so won’t be commenting on your blog further..Bye.

  217. You and I do differ on that. I think Ron Cook’s points are easily refuted. I can refute some of them myself. If you’re actually interested in the truth, let me know. And I”ll make the effort. If not, I have better uses to put my energy to.

    And, just for the record, this is not my blog. It’s Lazy Buddhist’s blog. I’m just a guest, like you. I do have a blog. Feel free to google.

    Thank you for the information you’ve given me. It’s stuff I didn’t know.

  218. Pabhongkha in his letter to the novice Nyu’u Tshalmo Trang:

    “Apart from the doctrine of Manjughosha Tsongkhapa alone, these days the views of all Sakyas, Kagyus, Nyingmas and so on are erroneous. They are not even Svatantra or Cittamatra, let alone the view of Prasanga Madhyamaka– meditating only the nihilist view like tirthikas and Hashang. If one upholds the nihilist view, the result is nothing other than going to Avichi hell. Since they can’t recognize subtle lethargy, even their meditation is defective. Apart from the thunderous noise of their pretentious boasting about profound secret mantra, they don’t even know the direction of bliss and emptiness, luminosity, union and so on. Since for them liberation and path of omniscience does not exist, realization will not arise even if they practice for a thousand years, as pointless as wishing for butter by churning water.”

  219. “I noticed Namdrol speaking up in this debate. Here’s an old post from Khyenrab in the 1990’s to which Namdrol never replied. It looks to me like this Namdrol has had about 10yrs to think about this so maybe he can post an answer now?”

    There was no point in responding to Khyenrab’s questions then, and little now.

    But to recap– no Sakya Lama has ever regarded Dolgyal as a wisdom protector.

    Written teachings are inherently more reliable than oral teachings since oral teachings that are not written down are easily lost and easily garbled.

    The question about Gorampa is irrelevant.

    N

  220. Surely Phabongka was entitled to his opinion on that. Sounds like he was having a bad day. Otherwise, your quote seems rather trifling and, unless you can outline the context, and unless you can show that this view has some more ominous significance not evident here, there’s no reason why anyone here shouldn’t dismiss it out of hand.

  221. Have enjoyed the renewed activity here since Ron’s post (#265) of 5 Sep.

    Shugdenpa (#266) says that if Ron Cook’s 6 reasons can be refuted he will stop practising Dorje Shugden (DS). But surely, even if it is shown that the Dalai Lama is a thoroughly bad man, this doesn’t prove that DS is a Buddha. Even if the Dalai Lama is a thoroughly bad man, there could still be many valid arguments as to why DS is a worldly spirit.

    In #268, Shugdenpa pastes Khyenrab’s post of a decade or so ago about whether some Sakyas regard DS as a Buddha. But even if Namdrol is wrong and there have been some Sakyas who have taken this view, this doesn’t prove DS is a Buddha. It would simply show that the consituency of those who hold DS to be a Buddha was bigger than some thought. But of course, those Sakyas would, just like others who hold DS to be a Buddha, have to make their case and refute arguments as to why DS is a worldly spirit.

    It seems to me that a key argument that is made as to why DS in not a valid Buddhist practice is that DS is not mentioned in the sutras or tantras. I have yet to come across a Shugdenpa response to this argument. This seems to me to be a powerful argument because other Dharma Protectors are, apparenently, mentioned in the tantras. I say “apparently” as I don’t read Tibetan and so haven’t read the tantras myself but, for example, Namdrol has mentioned in the “Severed Ties” thread here on this very website that

    “Shugden practice, unlike the Cittapattis and Dharmaraja, does not come from any valid tantra, it does not come from any tantra at all. ”

    I have also read that Mahakala is mentioned in the tantras. My point is that DS does seem to be something on an exception as it does seem all (?) or at least most other Protectors (mundane and supramundane) that are practised, are mentioned in the tantras.

    It seems to me that a second key argument against DS is regarding the validity of DS’s reincarnation lineage. Take the example of Virupa.

    According to the DS reincarnation lineage, Virupa was reborn as Sakya Pandita. Virupa lived from 837-909 CE and, as I understand it, Sakyas have always held that Virupa never took any rebirths. Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen, who was reborn as Dorje Shugden, died in 1657. I am not clear when the reincarnation lineage of Dorje Shugden first appeared, but even if it did so in 1657, this would be almost 750 years after Virupa’s death. The implication of holding the reincarnation lineage to be valid is surely that the Sakyas have been entirely mistaken about one of their most precious lamas for 750 years! I have seen no explanation of how it is that the Sakyas have been so badly wrong for so long and surely it is incumbent upon those to hold the DS reincarnation lineage to be valid to give such an explanation.

    Khyenrab’s point about Gorampa and Tsongkhapa is interesting. Goramapa was born 10 years after Je Tsongkhapa died. Presumably, as an accomplished scholar, he’d have known that Buddha predicted Manjushri emanating as Je Tsongkhapa. And if he knew this, presumably he would have just acknowledged it was game, set and match to Tsongkhapa and not bothered to formulate his objections to Tsongkhapa’s views on emptiness. So I can’t help thinking that there might be something more to this than Khyenrab suggests. But maybe not? Can anybody (Namdrol?) clarify this one?

    Thanx

  222. Having just made my first post on LazyBuddhist (#281), I discovered that Lucy James had posted a detailed reply to a post I made on one of the New Statesman threads re DS.

    http://www.newstatesman.com/blogs/the-faith-column/2008/08/dalai-lama-deity-banned

    In her reply, she address the point I raised in #281 that DS does not appear in the sutras or tantras. Have copied the reply below as thought it might be of interest to thread readers.

    SC
    _____________________________________________________________
    _____________________________________________________________

    Lucy James
    18 September 2008 at 22:28
    Dear Seeking Clarity,

    You said: Lucy

    I only became aware of this thread some days after it opened so this is a somewhat belated response to your much earlier posts (posts 8-10).

    You assert Dorje Shugden is a Buddha. However, are there not powerful arguments against the practice of Dorje Shugden being a legitimate Buddhist practice?

    LJ: Thank you for your questions, it’s good to explore these issues deeply.

    SC: (1) One argument made by critics of Dorje Shugden goes as follows. Buddha’s teachings consist of sutra and tantra. Dorje Shugden is referred to neither in the sutras nor in the tantras, Therefore the Dorje Shugden practice is not valid from a Buddhist point of view. I have never come across a refutation of this argument by Dorje Shugden practitioners. I wonder if you know of one?

    LJ: There are many Buddhist practices that are not referred to in the Sutras and Tantras but that arose due to enlightened activity after Buddha’s passing. For example, the Guru yoga of Je Tsongkhapa is not included in the Sutras and Tantras, but many practitioners have attained realizations through practising it. The close lineage of the Mahamudra instructions that are practised by Tsongkhapa’s disciples are also not included in the Sutras and Tantras of Buddha Shakyamuni and Buddha Vajradhara, yet they were passed down from Manjushri directly to Je Tsongkhapa and then to a succession of lineage Gurus to the present day. Through practising these instructions, many of these Gurus attained enlightenment in three years and three months.

    However, it’s not just Je Tsongkhapa’s tradition that relies on Buddhist practices that were not originally taught by Buddha Shakyamuni. The Nyingma (and Sakya) traditions rely upon Padmasambhava or Guru Rinpoche, whose practice is not included in the original Sutras and Tantras, including his mantra. Nyingmapas also rely on “termas” or “hidden treasure texts” that were not taught directly by Buddha, and the practice of Dzogchen that is very popular these days was also not taught by Buddha Shakyamuni, yet it is found to be effective by those who practise it.

    As in the expression, “the proof of the pudding is in the eating”, we can know if a practice is authentic if the meaning of its content can be traced to the Sutras and Tantras (such as is the case with Lama Chopa or Offering to the Spiritual Guide) and if, by relying on it with faith, we receive realizations. The efficacy and authenticity of Dorje Shugden practice is well known to those who rely upon it, including a huge number of great and “saintly” (as Stephen Batchelor puts it) Gelugpa Lamas.

    SC: (2) You state that “For 400 years Dorje Shugden practitioners have made peaceful prayers to this Buddha…This is an unbroken tradition of prayer that has been passed down to us through generations of highly accomplished Buddhist masters up to the present day.”

    Your remarks seem to imply that there is an unbroken lineage of Dorje Shugden practice from the time of Tulku Drakpa Gyltsen to the present day. Lineage is held to be of very great importance in Tibetan Buddhism and the various lamas that make up a particular lineage are commonly listed to demonstrate a practice’s validity. If you are suggesting there is an unbroken lineage of Dorje Shugden practice, are the lineage gurus listed anywhere? I have never seen such a listing.

    LJ: Gelugpas and Sakyas have been relying upon Dorje Shugden as an enlightened Protector for four hundred years. The Fifth Dalai Lama established the Temple of Trode Kangsar for him, wrote a praise to him and made a statue of him with his own hands. The Eleventh Dalai Lama enthroned Dorje Shugden as an enlightened Potector of the Ganden tradition and this tradition has continued until the present day.

    Obviously the practice of relying on the Wisdom Buddha in the form of Dorje Shugden has been passed down through the generations because it still exists intact today, but I don’t have the names of the Teachers who transmitted it. Perhaps they are the Gelug lineage Gurus from the time of Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen. If anyone is reading this and would like to contribute more accurate historical information, it would be appreciated.

    As I understand it, the present close lineage practice of Dorje Shugden that we rely upon was given to Tagpo Kelsang Khedrub Rinpoche by Dorje Shugden himself in Tushita Pure Land. He then passed it on to Phabongkha Dechen Nyingpo, who passed it on to Trijang Dorjechang Losang Yeshe, who passed it on to his disciples, including Trijang Dorjechang, Zong Rinpoche, Tomo Geshe, and others, including my own Spiritual Guide Geshe Kelsang Gyatso Rinpoche. It is from these precious Lamas that we have received the lineage of instruction.

    If it seems difficult to accept that these instructions come from Tushita Pure Land, we can look to the tradition of teaching the texts of Maitreya — such as ‘Sublime Continuum of the Great Vehicle’ and ‘Ornament for Clear Realizations’ — which were given to Asanga by Maitreya in Tushita. This is accepted by faithful Buddhist scholars, so in reality there’s nothing strange in asserting this.

    Just as Je Tsongkhapa received the instructions on the Guru yoga of Je Tsongkhapa and the close lineage of the Mahamudra directly from Manjushri, so Tagpo Kelsang Khedrub Rinpoche received the instructions on Dorje Shugden practice directly from Dorje Shugden. Both these practices are taught in the Gelugpa tradition by great Masters who are themselves living embodiments of the benefits of relying on these practices, so there is no need to doubt them.

    SC: (3) You describe the Yellow Book as “superstitious claptrap”. But, the descriptions of Dorje Shugden’s actions set out both by Trijang and Phabongkha in the translations I have read, are very much in accordance with those in the Yellow Book. Are you therefore suggesting that the statements of both Trijang and Phabongka also amount to superstitious claptrap?

    LJ: (To set this in context, I was answering a previous poster: “Two words about Dorje Shugden and why he was denounced: “Yellow Book””)

    The superstition comes from how the book is read. If you take the stories of the Yellow Book too literally, they can make you overly superstitious – witness Namkhai Norbu advising his students to wear protection cords and wave mudras at Dorje Shugden practitioners to protect themselves.

    Also, on E-Sangha, some posters were recently making the point that if you keep the book ‘Heart Jewel’ written by Geshe Kelsang, which contains the practice of Dorje Shugden, you are encouraging the spirit to hang around you and so it would be best to get rid of it.

    These views are just as sectarian as claiming that Dorje Shugden will harm you if you even touch a Nyingma text. In some Tibetan Buddhists’ minds, Dorje Shugden is the modern day equivalent of the bogey man. Although such views seem laughably superstitious, it is possible that a misunderstanding or literal reading of the Yellow Book can lead to them, which is why it does more harm than good.

    Personally I think the confusion over the Yellow Book comes from failing to understand that these kinds of stories are just that — stories. Every religion has stories and parables that are not intended to be taken literally but designed to help the reader or listener lead a better life. Did Jonah really set up his home in a whale’s stomach? Was Sarah really turned to a pillar of salt when she turned to look back at her town? If a Dorje Shugden practitioner stubs his toe when he picks up a Dzogchen text, is that really because he is being “punished”? Buddhas don’t work that way. Our suffering comes from our own karma.

    I don’t subscribe to the Yellow Book and nor does my teacher Geshe Kelsang. The only person who keeps bringing it up is the Dalai Lama as a justification for banning the practice of Dorje Shugden and criticizing Gelugpa “sectarianism”.

    Why did Zemey Rinpoche write it? I don’t know. Perhaps as a warning, Tibetan-style, to the Dalai Lama and other Gelugpa teachers not to try to mix Je Tsongkhapa’s teachings with other traditions, thereby destroying the special qualities of both. The 14th Dalai Lama had already attempted to merge the different schools or sects of Buddhism together in 1961 but was blocked by the Thirteen Tibetan Settlements led by the 16th Kamarpa.

    Anyway, if it was intended as a warning, it clearly has backfired as the Dalai Lama has gone ahead and mixed the traditions together anyway. He has every right to do that for himself, but not to impose his views on everyone else in the political heavy-handed way that he is doing. This, to me, is a far greater sectarian crime than writing a yellow book.

  223. Namdrol is incoherent. The root of NKT lineage is Buddha Shakyamuni, through Atisha, Je Tsongkhapa and then through Je Phabongkhapa to Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso Rinpoche.

    If you care to read the recent posting on WSS site about “Lama Policy” you will see very clearly the root of all these problems.

    All we want is to stop this pointless and harmful mixing of religion and politics.

    We do not want to prove that Dorje Shugden is a Buddha and the Dalai Lama is not. We just want to be left alone to practise our faith without fear of persecution….it is a basic human right.

  224. I find Namdrol’s replies completely unconvincing, don’t you?

    Instead of actually answering the points in the mail above he simply issues blank denials which are, in fact, laughable in their totality. There exists evidence to show what Namdrol says is not true and yet he persists in trying to convince people through his well-tried method – repetition of lies.

    He says: “There was no point in responding to Khyenrab’s questions then, and little now.”

    Why no point? So many lamas know that Sakya gurus relied on Dorje Shugden for 100’s of years – they wrote many prayers and there are many sadhanas by them.

    Namdrol then says: “But to recap– no Sakya Lama has ever regarded Dolgyal as a wisdom protector.”

    Really? Morchen Dorjechang Kunga Lhundrup told his disciples ‘Now is the time to rely upon Dorje Shugden’ and Sachen Kunlo, another great Sakya lama gave clear explanations in one of his prayers about the enlightened actions of each of the 32 deities of Dorje Shugden’s mandala. It is not a matter of shame to have lineage gurus who made prayers to a wisdom Buddha.

    Then Namdrol said: “Written teachings are inherently more reliable than oral teachings since oral teachings that are not written down are easily lost and easily garbled.”

    Really, Namdrol? Then what are we to make of the fact that Buddha Shakyamuni’s oral discourses were not written down for centuries but kept fresh by the immaculate memories of his disciples?

    The he said: “The question about Gorampa is irrelevant.”

    Maybe Khyenrab’s point here was simply too subtle for you?

  225. SC:

    The predictions that Tibetan hagiographers use about Tibetan Lamas come from the Manjushri Mulakalpa tantra. These predictions hardly constitute definitive proof of a prediction for this or that given person.

    THE MMT is a rather large text, and I don’t have time to track down the context of the citation. But I am sure at some point I will, then I will be able to provide more detail.

  226. “LJ: There are many Buddhist practices that are not referred to in the Sutras and Tantras but that arose due to enlightened activity after Buddha’s passing. For example, the Guru yoga of Je Tsongkhapa is not included in the Sutras and Tantras…”

    False reasoning– Guru Yoga as a method in general is taught in the Guhysamaja tantra.

    “LJ: Gelugpas and Sakyas have been relying upon Dorje Shugden as an enlightened Protector for four hundred years. The Fifth Dalai Lama established the Temple of Trode Kangsar for him, wrote a praise to him and made a statue of him with his own hands.”

    False– no Sakya Lama has ever relied on Dolgyal as a wisdom protector. This assertion simply displays ignorance of history.

    Second, the Fifth Dalai Lama had this temple dismantled and thrown in the Tsangpo river.

    The praise and statue attributed to him is are dubious.

    “so Tagpo Kelsang Khedrub Rinpoche received the instructions on Dorje Shugden practice directly from Dorje Shugden.”

    This amounts to saying that Shugden elevated himself.

    “Personally I think the confusion over the Yellow Book comes from failing to understand that these kinds of stories are just that — stories. Every religion has stories and parables that are not intended to be taken literally but designed to help the reader or listener lead a better life. Did Jonah really set up his home in a whale’s stomach? Was Sarah really turned to a pillar of salt when she turned to look back at her town?”

    False comparison– one can use this same reasoning to apply to sutras and tantras. In this case, this type of reasoning only hurts the case of NKT, it does not help it. With this reasoning, one can dismiss the idea that Asanga received the five treatises in a vision of Maitreya and so on.

    To another poster:

    “Why no point? So many lamas know that Sakya gurus relied on Dorje Shugden for 100’s of years – they wrote many prayers and there are many sadhanas by them.”

    100’s? Not so– Trichen Sonam Rinchen instituted a torma offering to Shugden sometime between 1724 and his death in 1740– this means that the practice of Shugden in Sakya survived for only 275 years at the most before it was put down by the present Sakya Trizen. This is hardly “hundreds of years”

    His son, Kunga Lodro, wrote a few more tormas. That was the extent of It. There is no empowerment for Shugden in Sakya, there never was.

    As far as Morchen goes, in Morchen’s autobiography of several hundred pages there is but a single line mentioning Shugden in 1718. he never passed on any practice to his main disciple. Assertions about Morchen and Shugden are pure fabrication with nothing to back them up.

    “Really, Namdrol? Then what are we to make of the fact that Buddha Shakyamuni’s oral discourses were not written down for centuries but kept fresh by the immaculate memories of his disciples?”

    Buddha’s parinirvana was roughly 100 years before Ashoka’s coronation. Buddhist sutras were being committed to writing within a hundred years of the Buddha’s passing.

    Centuries? No– a few decades, yes.

    N

  227. Ah, Namdrol what a scholar you appear to be (swoon….)

    To refute your first point I will simply give you some advertising from the Dalai Lama’s US tour in 2007. I quote word for word – then some pertinent questions for you:

    ” A most precious and unique Tara Cycle”

    The practice of this Cycle of the Cittamani Tara is unique in it being one of the rarest cycles of Tara practices belonging to the Highest Yoga Tantra classes. It remains THE most extensive, elaborate, secret and powerful cycles of Tara practices including – an uncommon Green Tara integrated with Guru Yoga practice simultaneous with daily self-initiation -the complete set of practices related to the Six Yogas of Naropa including the “Inner- Fire”, “Dream Yoga” and all -a full and complete Fire Puja practice
    -Retreat Practice and Instructions
    – Full Self-Initiation Manuals and
    – One of the most subtle Body-Mandala practices
    The lineage of this Tara Cycle is short and is revealed by Takpo Dorje Chang, an Enlightened Master, just 4 generations counting up from HH the Dalai Lama and Loseling Khen Rinpoche.
    HH the Dalai Lama, will in fact, be bestowing this extremely rare and precious Tara Cycle in Wisconsin, USA on 4 May 2007.”

    Questions:
    Who wouldn’t have wanted to be in Wisconsin with HH the Dalai Lama and be blessed with empowerment into this extremely rare and precious Tara cycle, revealed by the enlightened master Takpo Dorjechang ? And only 4 short generations counting up from HH the Dalai Lama! Wow! Let’s count:
    -HH the Dalai Lama
    -Kyabje Trijang Dorjechang
    -Kyabje Pabongkha Dorje hang
    -Kyabje Takpo Dorjechang ( jampel lhundrup)
    -Kyabje Takpo Dorjechang (kadrup chenpo takpuwa ngawang lodro gyatso)
    … Perfect! But wait… wasn’t Takpo Dorjechang/his reincarnation the one responsible for getting this whole ‘shugden cult’ started in a big way, with practices obtained through the same method – pure vision – as the above advertised Cittamani Tara sadhana?
    – Kadrup Chenpo takpuwa ngawang lodro gyatso, aged 15, went to 13 pure lands and brought back 13 practices especially relevant to our times, one of them being the Cittamani Tara practice.
    – his reincarnation, Kyabje Pabongkha Rinpoche’s root guru, went to Ganden pure land and brought back Dorje Shugden’s practice, including the praise to Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen.
    – both transmissions went through the above listed 4/3 generations to HH the Dalai Lama.

    May I ask you Namdrol – did you receive these empowerments and teachings last year? We know that you do not practise Shugden (so you are allowed in) and you revere the Dalai Lama. Were you there?

    Another question: Since Takpo Rinpoche has been claimed to have destroyed his refuge vows by taking Dorje Shugden as protector, why would the Dalai Lama want to use and even bestow empowerment of Cittamani Tara through that very lineage? Even absurdly assuming the first Takpo Rinpoche’s vision was pure and the latter (suddenly) impure, the transmission still comes through him (the latter), so what good could come from it, except infecting the masses with demonic influences?

    We end up with –
    the same logic as applied to Tulku Drakpa Gyaltsen: a Buddha can turn into a demon, which would render refuge redundant as there would be nothing to take refuge in, since there would be no true (irreversible) enlightenment… bad luck for sentient beings!

    The Dalai Lama doesn’t believe what he says in public about Dorje Shugden.

    PS The current Takpo (Dagpo) Rinpoche has been recognized by – guess whom? The 13 th Dalai Lama…

    Buddhadharma is a religion of revelation is it not? Buddha Shakyamuni and many of his enlightened followers have revealed countless beneficial practices suitable for different people. Are there no revealed practices in the pure lineage of the Sakya?

  228. To answer another of Namdrol’s points:

    I said: “Why no point? So many lamas know that Sakya gurus relied on Dorje Shugden for 100’s of years – they wrote many prayers and there are many sadhanas by them.”

    Namdrol replied:
    100’s? Not so– Trichen Sonam Rinchen instituted a torma offering to Shugden sometime between 1724 and his death in 1740– this means that the practice of Shugden in Sakya survived for only 275 years at the most before it was put down by the present Sakya Trizen. This is hardly “hundreds of years”

    Only accepting your own admission (which I do not) you still contradict yourself” If 275 yrs is not 100’s what is?!

    Also the famous Sakya Pandita is recognized as one of Dorje Shugden’s reincarnations; as was a famous Abbot of Nalanda monastery together with many other teachers and emanations back to the appearance of Bodhisattva Manjushri in Shakyamuni’s time…

    You may reject this as much as you wish but these things are taught by qualified and realized teachers of the Gelugpa tradition. We have no reason to debate this point with you other than the fact that you are attacking our precious lineage gurus, humiliating them with your views. Why are you doing this? We are not attacking Sakya.

    Your attitude is clearly sectarian following the Dalai Lama’s political view and wishing to destroy the faith of Gelugpas in their lineage teachers. We have no wish to attack Sakyapas; we appreciate that you have a wonderful and pure lineage of teachings and rejoice in your practice. But we will not allow you in a public forum to attack us in this way so please stop.

    Regarding Trode Khangsar – the 5th Dalai Lama’s temple to Shugden – the first temple – your information is very wrong. Trode Khangsar still stands today in Lhasa – it is an historic building surrounded by more modern ones. You can see a photo. of it at the Dorje Shugden website (and many faithful followers have visited it recently to pay their respect).

  229. Namdrol you seem to put great store by what is written in books so here is something recently written by Western Shugden people following consulting Tibetan texts to clarify why this debate is happening.

    As it is lengthy I will post in two posts:

    The following information has been prepared by the Western Shugden Society based on Tibetan books written by different authors. The purpose of this information is to encourage people to stop taking the ‘drug’ of ’Lama Policy’, which means to stop following ‘Lama Policy’. In this context ‘Lama’ refers to the Fifth, Thirteenth and Fourteenth Dalai Lamas. The policy of these Lamas has been to use religion for political aims, thus causing suffering to millions of people from generation to generation. Because of the Fifth Dalai Lama’s policy of mixing religion and politics, the Nyingma, Sakya and Kagyu traditions of Tibetan Buddhism quickly degenerated and, as a result, for hundreds of years millions of people who followed these traditions experienced great difficulties. Today, some people from these traditions say that it was the Gelugpas who caused their tradition to degenerate, but this is incorrect. The Gelugpas themselves had no political power. It was only the Fifth Dalai Lama through his political power who destroyed the development of the Nyingma, Sakya and Kagyu traditions, both spiritually and materially.

    The Fifth Dalai Lama always showed two faces. One face was that of a Nyingmapa and the other was that of a Gelugpa. In truth, however, he did not follow either tradition, but remained in an intermediate state between them. He never found a pure spiritual path. This is the same as the present Dalai Lama who also shows two faces and likewise has never found a pure spiritual path.

    How the Fifth Dalai Lama achieved political power

    The Fifth Dalai Lama achieved political power through the Mongolian ruler, Gushri Han who helped him to fight a civil war against the Karma Tenkyong Wangpo, the principal ruler of Tibet. Requested by the Fifth Dalai Lama, Gushri Han sent the Mongolian army into Tibet, and as a result Karma Tenkyong Wangpo was murdered and the Fifth Dalai Lama won the war. In this way the Fifth Dalai Lama achieved political power as ruler of Tibet. This alone shows the nature of ‘Lama Policy’. The Fifth Dalai Lama was an ordained Buddhist monk who had the commitment not to harm others, including not to kill and not to steal. He therefore acted directly against the spiritual rules of Buddhism.
    In their teachings these three Lamas – the Fifth, Thirteenth and Fourteenth Dalai Lamas – talk about compassion, but they always behave like dictators, causing so many problems for their society. Nevertheless, because of extreme religious view and blind faith, many people still believe that these Lamas are holy beings. In Tibetan society, if anyone has views and intentions that are different to those of the Dalai Lama they are immediately accused of not being Tibetan; they are criticized, threatened and ostracized from society. This is happening to Shugden practitioners today. From this alone we can see that this ‘Lama Policy’ is worse for society than the problem of drugs. No one can solve the problems of ‘Lama Policy’ unless the Lama himself changes from his own side.
    The Fifth Dalai Lama was the founder of this Lama Policy, which he named ‘the union of religion and politics’. The nature of ‘Lama Policy’ is deceptive; its function is to mislead people and to use religion for political aims. It is like a rainbow, which from a distance looks beautiful but on close examination is seen to be completely empty and hollow. The only lineage holders of the Lama Policy founded by the Fifth Dalai Lama are the Thirteenth and Fourteenth Dalai Lamas, and of these two the policy of the present Dalai Lama is the worst.
    During the Fifth Dalai Lama’s time, there was a Lama called Ngatrul Dragpa Gyaltsen, who was recognized as an emanation of the Buddha of Wisdom. People throughout Tibet had great faith in Ngatrul Dragpa Gyaltsen and the Mongolian ruler Gushri Han was especially devoted to him. Because of this, even though the Fifth Dalai Lama had political power, Ngatrul Dragpa had spiritual power. These two Lamas had different views and intentions; Ngatrul Dragpa rejected the Lama Policy of the union of religion and politics. He wanted Buddhism to be maintained purely without being used for worldly aims, but the Fifth Dalai Lama was opposed to this. Afraid that Ngatrul Dragpa would take the position of the Fifth Dalai Lama through receiving help from ministers of the Mongolian ruler, the Fifth Dalai Lama and his ministers secretly murdered Ngatrul Dragpa. Many Tibetan people believe that Ngatrul Dragpa then appeared as a deity called Dorje Shugden, who is the protector of pure Buddhism and who prevents Buddhism being used for political aims. This belief is based on commitments made by Ngatrul Dragpa himself when he was alive and because of many predictions.

  230. Part Two:

    At that time the Fifth Dalai Lama experienced many difficulties and inauspicious signs. Because of this he believed that Ngatrul Dragpa had become Shugden out of retaliation, and he was terrified that Shugden would now kill him. The Fifth Dalai Lama first sought refuge in other Lamas and requested them to burn Shugden with a magic ritual fire practice, which of course failed. Then for a long time he made many strong request prayers to his own protector, the Nechung spirit, to destroy Shugden, but his experience of bad signs and hallucinations became even stronger. Finally he realized that he had made a great mistake in opposing Ngatrul Dragpa. Regretting his previous actions, he began to respect the instructions of his Root Guru, the First Panchen Lama, who had indicated that Ngatrul Dragpa was the same mental continuum as the great beings Sonam Dragpa, Duldzin Dragpa and Je Tsongkhapa Losang Dragpa. With strong regret the Fifth Dalai Lama confessed his wrong deeds and, recognizing Shugden as an enlightened Deity, finally decided to rely upon him. For his daily practice the Fifth Dalai Lama wrote a request prayer to Shugden called ‘lhun drub do ma’. Later he ordered a Shugden Temple to be built in Lhasa called ‘Trode Khangsar’, which has a Shugden statue and shrine.
    From this true account we can understand that the present Dalai Lama is acting completely opposite to the Fifth Dalai Lama. Due to ignorance, the Fifth Dalai Lama first rejected the enlightened Deity Shugden, but later his mind changed from ignorance to wisdom and he then believed in and relied upon Shugden for the rest of his life. In contrast, the present Dalai Lama first relied with his wisdom upon the enlightened Deity Shugden but later, having received advice from the evil oracle of the Nechung spirit, his mind changed from wisdom to ignorance. Using his political power he has now imposed a ban on the practice of Dorje Shugden, causing suffering to millions of people. Despite this reversal of behaviour, the present Dalai Lama still says publicly that he is rejecting Shugden because he is following the Fifth Dalai Lama. This is clearly a lie.
    Shugden practitioners want to practise the Gelug tradition purely without mixing it with the Nyingma tradition; because of this the present Dalai Lama says that Shugden practitioners are sectarian. In truth, the Nyingmapas also want to practise their tradition purely without mixing it with the Gelug tradition. And it is the same for the Sakyapas and Kagyupas. Therefore, according to the Dalai Lama’s view the Nyingmapas, Sakyapas and Kagyupas are also sectarian; but he says that only Shugden people are sectarian. From this we can see how dishonest and deceitful he is. What the present Dalai Lama really wants is for himself to become the leader of all traditions of Tibetan Buddhism, and to make people throughout the world follow only a tradition of his own that he has newly created. Doing this will naturally destroy the pure lineages and blessings of the Nyingma, Sakya, Kagyu and Gelug traditions; this will be a great loss. For this reason the Western Shugden Society encourages people to stop taking the drug of ‘Lama Policy’.

  231. Hi Kadampa

    A quick response to your assertion that Sakya Pandita is part of Dorje Shugden’s reincarnation lineage.

    According to Sapan’s Namthar, his guru, Jetsun Dragpa Gyaltsen predicted that he was to take only three more births subsequent to his death; as a Vidyadhaara in a distant world realm to the east; after that, as the son of an Bengali King called Mumuni, named Suryagarbha; and finally in his last life traversing the stages and paths, he was to have become the Buddha Vimala`srii.

    As I mentioned in #281, Sakyas are absolutely clear that Virupa had no further rebirths and so could not have been reborn as Sapan. And given the above, Sakyas are equally clear that Sapan was not reborn as Buton.

    Sapan lived from 1182–1251. Assuming the Dorje Shugden reincarnation lineage first appeared in 1657, the Sakya view regarding Sapan had been around for just over 400 years. So Shugdenpas clearly believe that for over 400 years, Sakyas were entirely wrong about Sapan and for 750 years were entirely wrong about Virupa. How can this be?

    To say simply the Dorje Shugden lineage was taught by realized masters in the Gelugpa tradition seems not entirely convincing. Why was none of this pointed out by Gelugpa masters from Je Tsongkhapa up until 1657. Are there no realized masters in the Sakya tradition who know of what they speak when referring to two of their most precious lamas? It doesn’t seem unreasonable to expect that, if one is seeking to overturn 750 years of received wisdom, one should perhaps seek to explain why the received wisdom was so badly wrong.

    SC

  232. Re #293: clarification

    In the last para, “Why was none of this pointed out” = “Why was the ‘fact’ that Virupa was reborn as Sapan was reborn as Buton not pointed out”.

    Thanx

  233. Hello SC.

    Maybe we mere mortals just don’t get it eh? Looking at dates in a history book won’t help us to understand that which is beyond our understanding for the moment.

    Buddha Vajradhara (no less) said “I am the teacher and I am the listener, I am the speaker and the student” (or similar words). His meaning was that he could appear simultaneously as various emanations – appearing to common, ordinary appearances to be different people at the same time. Vajrapani would appear as a disciple but was also an emanation of his teacher Vajradhara. Pure Gelugpas believe that Dragpa Gyaltsen, a disciple of Je Tsongkhapa’s, was also an emanation of his teacher. There are many examples.

    The fact is that unless we ourselves have high realizations then we need to have faith in our teachers. However, this does not mean that if my teachers say one thing about the various emanations of Dorje Shugden and your teachers say something different that we have to have a problem. Both lineages of teachers will teach whatever is beneficial for their disciples. I am happy that you have your teachings – I have mine and I am satisfied with them – I hope you are with yours. I do not see any point in meaningless debate between schools about this; it just causes disharmony and bad feeling. In fact the various Gelug lamas differ in their presentations of the lineages of reincarnations of Dorje Shugden…why is that a problem? What are we grasping at?

    The problem comes when one group tries to impose or force its view onto another. Wouldn’t you agree? This is what the Dalai Lama and his supporters such as Namdrol have been trying to do for 12 years without stopping – persecuting without mercy all Shugden people simply for their religious beliefs – nothing else. Now is the time to clarify all these issues and remove the poison of politics from Buddhism. You can see Shugden people around the world now are clarifying this issue. Thank you for the opportunity.

    By the way, I found this interesting collection on Youtube. Here it is for your consideration of the question posed at the bottom by the author “floatinghippos”. (Apologies to this person for a few small changes I made – I hope you don’t mind.)

    “Dorje Shugden is recognized as an enlightened being. This is according to the most highly respected masters such as: The Fifth Dalai Lama, His Holiness Kyabje Pabongka Dorje Chang, His Holiness Kyabje Trijang Dorje Chang, Kyabje Zong Dorje Chang, Kyabje Domo Geshe Rinpoche, Lama Yeshe, Kyabje Dhapu Bamcho Rinpoche, Geshe Rabten Rinpoche, H.E. Kyabje Zemey Dorje Chang, 9th Panchen Rinpoche Chokyi Nyima Gelek Namgyal, His Holiness the 10th Panchen Rinpoche, (Gaden Jangtse Monastery) H.E. Khen Rinpoche Lobsang Tsephel, His Eminence Taktra Rinpoche, Gangchen Choktrul Rinpoche of Sera Mey Monastery, (Drepung Gomang Monastery) Guru Deva Rinpoche, H.E. Kyabje Rato Choktrul Rinpoche, H.E. Kyabje Gyara Dorje Chang of Drepung Loseling Monastery, (Sera Mey Monastery) Bompra Kensur Rinpoche Jetsun Lobsang Ngodrob, Sera Mey Monastery Kyabje Gosok Tulku Rinpoche, His Eminence Kensur Lobsang Tharchin Rinpoche,(Drepung Gomang Monastery) His Eminence Kyabje Dagom Rinpoche, His Holiness (the previous Sharpa Choeje Rinpoche) Jetsun Lobsang Nyima Pelsangpo, His Eminence Kyabje Lati Choktrul Rinpoche, His Eminence Kensur Jampa Yeshe Rinpoche, (Sera Mey Monastery) Kensur Gyalrong Ngawang Thekchok Rinpoche, H.E. Lama Loden Sherab Dagyab Rinpoche, (Drepung Loseling Monastery) H. E. Gelek Rinpoche, Venerable Gonsar Rinpoche, Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso, His Eminence Zasep Rinpoche, (Sera Mey Monastery) His Eminence Khejok Rinpoche, (Sera Mey Monastery) Geshe Yeshe Wangchuk, (Sera Mey Monastery) His Eminence Yongyal Rinpoche, (Gaden Jangtse Monastery) Geshe Khenrab Gajam, (Gaden Jangtse Monastery) Geshe Tsultrim Tenzin Rinpoche, His Eminence Rongtha Gyabgon Rinpoche.

    And last of all – the present Dalai Lama himself until (possibly) 1978. Now if the Dalai Lama wants to stop practising himself – fine, no problem. If he wants to force everyone to stop practising – big problem.

    Ask yourself this question: Can all the previous masters listed above be wrong? I don’t think so. Why does the Dalai Lama think he knows better than his own lineage gurus and spiritual guides? He cannot re-write Buddhism. No-one, not even a Dalai Lama can change the Dharma.

    His reasons for banning this practice are 100% political not spiritual.”

    Well, it is a point of view eh?

    It is an interesting question to which nobody has given a satisfactory answer – how come only the Dalai Lama has the view that he does and all the previous hundreds of supposedly equally realized masters were wrong? (Don’t forget it was only when the Dalai Lama began his campaign that people started to say Shugden was not a Buddha – even the 5th Dalai Lama changed his mind and perceived Shugden as enlightened in the latter part of his life). Some people try to say that Dalai Lama is “the highest tulku” so he knows best – but this is nonsense – as you can see from the list above there are many, many realized masters. And in fact there are serious doubts about the choosing of this particular Dalai Lama when he was a child so why should anybody take seriously what he says? The only reason this is happening is because he wields political power….

  234. “We have no reason to debate this point with you other than the fact that you are attacking our precious lineage gurus, humiliating them with your views.”

    I am just recounting their views. If you find the ultra-sectarian history of your lineage humiliating, find another one.

    Incidentally, Pabhongkha, in several places, approves of the suppression of certain Sakya authors by the Fifth Dalai Lama, and expresses outrage that Sakyapas in eastern Tibet defied the Fifth’s censure of these texts, published and disseminated them. Pabhongkha wrote that it would be hundred times better that these texts not take root than be allowed to take root. Chickens like to come home to roost…

  235. “However, this does not mean that if my teachers say one thing about the various emanations of Dorje Shugden and your teachers say something different that we have to have a problem.”

    Yes, actually, it means that we have a problem– that’s the whole point.

  236. “Were you there?”

    No. Factually speaking, I have never once received any kind of empowerment from HHDL– so in this respect, I am a free agent.

    In general, “pure” visions that correspond with sutra and tantra are acceptable. Those that do not, are not.

    I see no reason to believe that Takpo II is the same person as Takpo I since I do not just willy nilly accept every person that bears the name “tulku” to bears the mind stream of the person after which they are named.

    Of course there are pure vision teachings in Sakya- none however which concern worldly protectors like Shugden.

    As for the rest of your spiel about the reign of the Fifth, it is mostly a tissue of lies and distortions.

    Fine for you to believe if it you choose, but it is a tissue of lies.

    As for the temple you mention, you claim it was built by the Fifth– but you have no proof, just like you have no proof that he ever wrote a positive supplication to Dolgyal.

    N

    N

  237. “Both lineages of teachers will teach whatever is beneficial for their disciples. I am happy that you have your teachings – I have mine and I am satisfied with them – I hope you are with yours. I do not see any point in meaningless debate between schools about this; it just causes disharmony and bad feeling.”

    Incorrect– what you teach your students harms them.

    We will continue to teach that the present day practice of Dolgyal is erroneous, and that people who undertake this practice are practicing a false Dharma.

    N

  238. what happened to the brady bunch re~runs ? themz made tha moist sense two me ~ O Marsha ! quick put it out some one’s coming . .

  239. “As for the temple you mention, you claim it was built by the Fifth– but you have no proof, just like you have no proof that he ever wrote a positive supplication to Dolgyal.”

    Since it is you that it contesting the accepted Gelugpa lineage history on this matter, surely the burden of proof is on you.

  240. “Incorrect– what you teach your students harms them.”

    While you’re on the subject of proof, on this matter I would dearly love to see some proof.

  241. “Can all the previous masters listed above be wrong?”

    “Sure, easily.”

    So it’s possible even you could be wrong then? If so, who is most likely to be wrong based on the balance of probabilities?

  242. “This is what the Dalai Lama and his supporters such as Namdrol have been doing for 12 years without stopping – persecuting Shugden people without mercy simply for their religious beliefs – nothing else.”

    On this matter, there is a large amount of proof, and it appears to be growing all the time.

  243. Hi Kadampa

    You write

    “Maybe we mere mortals just don’t get it eh? Looking at dates in a history book won’t help us to understand that which is beyond our understanding for the moment.”

    I note that having posted two very long posts (#291, #292) looking back into history, you then question me doing the same.

    In #290, with regard to Sapan being reborn as Buton, you write

    “You may reject this as much as you wish but these things are taught by qualified and realized teachers of the Gelugpa tradition. We have no reason to debate this point with you other than the fact that you are attacking our precious lineage gurus, humiliating them with your views. Why are you doing this? We are not attacking Sakya. ”

    You argue that claiming that Gelugpa gurus are wrong about Sapan constitutes attacking them. Thus, you are, of course, attacking Sakya because you are claiming that, with regard to Sapan, they are…well, wrong.

    Sakya say Virupa took no rebirths. 750 or more years later certain Gelugpas claim he did. Now surely, you would agree, both can’t be right. So my only point is that if Shugdenpas are going to come along 750 years after the event and claim Sakyas are entirely wrong, it would be instructive to hear why. Surely that’s reasonable?

    In #295 you list some of the lamas that hold Dorje Shugden to be an enlightened being. Is your point that more lamas hold this view than hold he is a spirit? Even if this were true, it would not prove that their view is correct. To claim it would is surely just an example of the fallacy of “argumentum ad populum”?

    SC

  244. “‘This is what the Dalai Lama and his supporters such as Namdrol have been doing for 12 years without stopping – persecuting Shugden people without mercy simply for their religious beliefs – nothing else.’

    On this matter, there is a large amount of proof, and it appears to be growing all the time.”

    This kind of hyperbole is nonsense. No one is persecuting Dolgyal practitioners. That’s just a plain lie.

    All Gelug monasteries in India are branches of the TGIE i.e. the Ganden Phodrang. The Dalai Lama is perfectly within his rights as the head of the Ganden Phodrang to set policies for Gelug monasteries in India.

    You Dolgyalpas should just go set up your own monasteries, start a new school, and stop your whining.

    Will we stop pointing out that your practice is mistaken? Never. But that is not going to stop you from practicing Dolgyal.

    SC:

    “Argumentum ad populum”– if we go by this than Dolgyal wallas are definitely wrong since everyone else in Kagyu, Sakya, Gelug and Nyingma holds that Dolgyal is just a Gyalpo spirit.

    N

  245. Namdrol said:
    “Incorrect– what you teach your students harms them.

    We will continue to teach that the present day practice of
    Dolgyal is erroneous, and that people who undertake this practice are practicing a false Dharma.”

    This – to use Namdrol’s cliched expression – certainly is a “tissue of lies”. In a propaganda war, such as the one he has been waging against Shugden people, a lie repeated often enough becomes a truth for many.

    Namdrol repeats this endlessly but cannot quote any actual evidence of harm. Can you, Namdrol, tell me:

    i) how many Shugden people you know have been harmed and
    ii) give a list of the things that happened to them please?

    I do not want quotes from books but actual evidence of real harm done to real Shugden people, living right now, by them doing this practice.

    I am waiting for your reply. If you cannot come up with evidence of harm then I will have to conclude that you are definitely spreading a “tissue of lies” around the world.

  246. Namdrol have you taken leave of your senses? Or do you, like so many following the Dalai Lama, simply prefer to not see the suffering of Shugden people but the preach about compassion in the abstract?

    You said:
    “This kind of hyperbole is nonsense. No one is persecuting Dolgyal practitioners. That’s just a plain lie.”

    Go to Youtube and see the evidence with your own eyes.

    Read the countless stories listed at the WSS website. Go talk to the ex-Shugden monks in New York City (not that far from where you live really) who now chop veg. 12hrs a day after being expelled from their monasteries and country.

    Oh, poor Namdrol – you are in deep denial boy and it won’t help you to be your normal insulting self…

  247. Namdrol, this quote below from you shows without any doubt that your mind is filled with a mixture of politics and religion.

    “All Gelug monasteries in India are branches of the TGIE i.e. the Ganden Phodrang. The Dalai Lama is perfectly within his rights as the head of the Ganden Phodrang to set policies for Gelug monasteries in India.”

    The actual head of monasteries is ultimately Shakyamuni and the rules which operate in those institutions are Dharma rules. Just being a political figure gives no-one any right to control religious institutions.

  248. Note on first Dorje Shugden Temple built by 5th Dalai Lama – first part of much longer article available on Wikipedia.

    Trode Khangsar
    Dorje Shugden’s Ornament in Lhasa’s Mandala
    By Trinley Kalsang

    Just as the Buddhist monuments and structures in the Indian subcontinent are undeniable testaments to Buddhism’s past establishment in these regions, similarly Trode Khangsar
    (spro bde khang gsar) in the heart of Lhasa illustrates how the protector deity Dorje Shugden was officially established in Tibet. In the 17th century Trode Khangsar was designated as a “protector house” (btsan khang) for the deity Dorje Shugden by the Fifth Dalai Lama. By the end of the 17th century its role was expanded as it was entrusted to the Gelug monastery Riwo Choling (ri bo chos gling) by the Fifth Dalai Lama’s regent
    (sde sris) Sangye Gyatso. As a result relations between Dorje Shugden and the Gelug sect, the Tibetan government, Ganden Podrang (dga’ ldan pho brang), were firmly established early in the existence of this deity.

    Trode Khangsar is part of the dwindling a number of historical buildings amongst a sea of encroaching development in the Lhasa valley. Not only is the city expanding on a course to soon exceed the valley itself, but historical buildings in its epicenter, critical elements of Central Asia’s holy city, are being torn down and replaced with modern urban housing, commercial buildings and other structures
    .
    The Tibet Heritage Fund has been chronicling historical buildings in Lhasa since the 1990’s as they disappear like icicles in the sun. They provide this startling statistic:
    “Out of the 600 buildings recorded by Peter Aufschnaiter in the city’s central area in 1948, an average of 35 buildings per year have been torn down since 1993, except in 1999 and 2000.” In other words by 2011 virtually all of the historical buildings will be gone except those few that enjoy a protected status.

    The lot of Trode Khangsar itself exemplifies this trend. A modern building obscures the front western half of the building. Another small historical protector house on its lot dedicated to Dorje Shugden’s attendent deity Khache Marpo was removed in the 1990’s to make room for surrounding development. The Dagpo Drumpa mansion, a historical neighbor building, was demolished and replaced with other structures in the late 1990’s.
    The basement of Trode Khangsar is now used as a dwelling.

    Lhasa’s Inner Sanctum
    Like many other historic religious structures, Trode Khangsar is just outside the perimeter of the Barkor (bar skor). The Barkor is the innermost circumambulation or pilgrimage route as it encircles the Tsuklhakhang temple in the center of historical Lhasa. This is Lhasa’s holiest temple, which hosts the Jowo Shakyamuni Buddha statue3. The Tsuklhakhang is the center of the Lhasa’s mandala like design, which the city has
    followed since the seventh century when the king Songtsen Gampo extended the establishment of Buddhism in Tibet.
    This mandala design included various shrines in groups of four just outside the perimeter of the Barkor in a sparse, peripheral arrangement. In particular there were Rigsum
    Lhakhang4 of four cardinal directions (phyogs bzhi’i rigs gsum mgon po lha khang), another set of Rigsum Lhakhang for the four intermediate directions, and four protector
    houses (btsan khang). Although Trode Khangsar is not included in this group of four, it exists in the same zone, being just outside the perimeter of the Barkor. As for the exact
    location of Trode Khangsar, it is just south of the Barkor, approximately 200 meters south of the Tsuklhakhang. From a Tibetan pilgrimage (GCJ, 33) guide:

    Trode Khangsar is also orally pronounced “Pute Khangsar”. It is also referred in shortened form as Trokhang. On the east side of Dagpo Drumpa [mansion] in the Pal Ling [neighborhood] you will encounter this tsen khang [protector house].
    Encompassing all of historic Lhasa is the Lingkor (gling skor), the outermost circumambulation route. It encircles the Barkor on the south east side and extends far to the northwest to encompass the majestic Potala palace. The Lingkor passes by an access way on the south east corner of its loop that leads north to Trode Khangsar, which is accessible at about 100 meters. Pilgrims visiting Lhasa for the last 300 years have been
    circumambulating Trode Khangsar whether they were aware of its existence and significance or not.

  249. OK sew now we got His-story ~ sew house about Her Story . . . ?

    Alright eye’ll start =

    She rode far and wide through the dark of night searching for her only lighthouse and this was no dream. She needed protection and she needed it fast since the evil wizard, who later it will be revealed in a classic literary style was merely the shadow or her own fear, was quickly closing in on her which could mean only one thing . . . .

  250. Oh yes, Wiki is such an authoritative source of facts on the Dolgyal issue…..

    “…actual evidence of real harm done to real Shugden people, living right now, by them doing this practice.”

    As far as harm from Dogyal practice goes, there is plenty of anecdotal evidence, you just have to open your eyes and ears. If you choose to disbelieve Trijiang Rinpoche’s account in the Yellow Book, what can I say?

    The fact that people stand on street corners calling the Dalai Lama a liar is enough evidence that Dogyal practice is harmful to them.

    As far as Trode Khangsar goes– you were right on one thing, this was not the shrine the Fifth had dismantled and had thrown into the Tsang Po, that was at Dol Chumig.

    However, can we really regard Ganden Chopel’s account, written 250 years as authoritative? I don’t think so . All we can say about is that it records a tradition. Traditions are not histories. Therefore, you still have no proof that the Fifth ever supported Shugden. Ironically, these days you all slander the Fifth at the same time you try to employ him as proof. So why should we believe you when you use such devices?

    You pile up empty verbiage, write article after article, with ever more and more hollow reasoning– why? Because you have nothing substantive to support your position than some prayers of dubious authorship and persistent blind faith. What a pitiful way to wreck this chance at a precious human birth.

  251. Namdrol I asked you to give me:

    “…actual evidence of real harm done to real Shugden people, living right now, by them doing this practice.”

    You replied:

    “As far as harm from Dogyal practice goes, there is plenty of anecdotal evidence, you just have to open your eyes and ears.

    The fact that people stand on street corners calling the Dalai Lama a liar is enough evidence that Dogyal practice is harmful to them.”

    Namdrol, I have been practising Shugden for almost 30yrs. I know thousands of practitioners both Tibetan and Western. No-one has reported anything strange happening to them as a result of their practice. You have no evidence to show harm.

    You have been lying all along.

    The Dalai Lama also says that Shugden practice is harmful but, like you, he can provide no evidence other than repeated empty rhetoric. However, I can give you clear evidence that Shugden practice is completely harmless.

    As you know, the Dalai Lama practised Dorje Shugden himself for 25yrs or so. He also practises Nyingma (which is his freedom and I have no problem with this). So we can see that Shugden doesn’t harm people who practise other traditions – the evidence is the healthy (although a bit tired right now) 74yr old Dalai Lama that we see today!

    So it is clear that he – and you – have publicly lied about this issue causing huge suffering to millions of people.

    Therefore, having had no reply to 12yrs of requests to discuss this issue – when we stand in public places shouting “Dalai Lama Stop Lying!” we are excercising freedom of speech to bring this subject to the attention of the rest of the world. We want Dharma to be free from the dirty stain of politics…

    We want the Dalai Lama to tell the truth and to behave like a Buddhist monk; we want him to stop lying and to stop behaving like an ordinary politician.

    He – and his sectarian followers like yourself – are bringing massive disgrace upon Buddhism. Your own personal verbal, abusive attacks and persecutions have been endured for many years with great patience.

    Now we are debating this subject in public and we are seeing who is right and who is wrong.

    Regarding evidence of harm caused by the Dalai Lama’s illegal religious ban we are not talking about anecdotal evidence.

    There are many documents written by the Dalai Lama’s govt., video footage of him inciting Tibetan people to persecute Shugden followers, even a 9 foot high wall constructed at Ganden monastery to segregate Shugden monks, shops refuse to sell food, monks expelled with nowhere to live, water supplies cut off, electricity supplies cut off, families divided; parents refusing to speak to their children and vice versa, children expelled from schools because their family follow this Deity, medical treatment refused to Shugden people, Identity Cards denied so stopping freedom of travel, access to govt. jobs etc etc etc. Angry mobs have stoned people’s houses, houses have been burnt down, people have been beaten (see the France24 report from August 2008). Forced signature campaigns – a travesty of the Vinaya rules (which I post for your interest next post).

  252. Namdrol do you have a view about the following?

    The purpose of this article is to examine whether or not the recent actions of the His Holiness the Dalai Lama with respect to the practice of Dorje Shugden are in accordance with the Vinaya, Buddha’s Code of Conduct. My intention here is not to engage in hurtful speech or divisive speech but rather to investigate the Dorje Shugden dispute through the lens of the Vinaya with a wish to determine which of the two opposing views on this practice is in accord with the Dharma. In particular, the Dalai Lama has initiated referendums at each of the great Gelugpa monasteries on this issue and my efforts here are focused on checking the validity of these referendums.
    During a speech made by the Dalai Lama in January 8th 2008 at Drepung Loseling Monastery (transcript from Voice of America) he said:
    “In the Vinaya rules also, when there is a contentious issue, the monks take vote-sticks and decide, as mentioned in the seven methods of resolving conflict. In contemporary democratic practice, there is such a thing as ‘referendum’, ‘consulting the majority’. The matter has now reached this point of consulting what the majority wants. Therefore, when you return to your respective places after this programme at Loseling Monastery, put these questions:
    1. Whether you want to worship Dholgyal. This is the first question. Those who want to worship, should sign saying they wish to worship Dholgyal; those who don’t want, should sign saying that [they] don’t want to.
    2. ‘[Whether] we want to share the religious and material amenities of life with Dholgyal worshippers.’ You should sign saying so. ‘We do not want to share religious and material amenities of life with Dholgyal worshippers.’ (You should) sign saying so.’”

    The particular section of the Vinaya to which the Dalai Lama is referring , known as “The Seven Methods for Resolving Conflict”, is the scriptural basis for the referendums at the great Gelugpa monasteries of Sera, Ganden, and Drepung. I decided to study these instructions to discern whether or not those procedures are being followed. As I proceeded I was shocked to find that the protocols laid out by Buddha on how to handle such conflicts are being completely ignored by both the Dalai Lama and the abbots of those monasteries. In fact, the particular translation and commentary I referenced for this article offered many instructions that, if followed sincerely, would ease much of the suffering being endured by practitioners on both sides of this issue.
    For the sake of readability and in the interest of space I will not insert all seven methods for resolving conflict here. I have based this article in its entirety upon The Buddhist Monastic Code, Volume I: The Patimokkha Training Rules Translated and Explained, by Thanissaro Bhikkhu. I would like to take this opportunity to express my gratitude to Thanissaro Bhikkhu for this work as I would be unable to investigate the scriptural validity of these referendums without his kindness in composing this work. In this instance it is not ideal to use the Pali translation of the Vinaya Pitaka because it would not be the translation that the Dalai Lama himself would follow. However, after some consideration, I realized that the violations of the protocols laid out by Buddha in the Pali translation of the Vinaya Pitaka would be reasonable objections to the referendums even if they were not mentioned in the Tibetan translations, thus I decided to compose this article.
    The main reason why I didn’t use one of the Tibetan translations is that I could not find them translated into English. If you have access to a translation of these seven methods for resolving conflict from the Kangyur and Tangyur I would love to study those, please pass them along.
    The particular method in question is method #5 which I have copied below.
    “5. Acting in accordance with the majority. This refers to cases in which bhikkhus are unable to settle a dispute unanimously, even after all the proper procedures are followed, and – in the words of the Canon – are “wounding one another with weapons of the tongue.” In cases such as these, decisions can be made by majority vote.
    Such a vote is valid if –
    1. The issue is important
    2. The procedures of “in the presence of” have all been followed but have not succeeded in settling the issue. (The discussion in the Cullavagga indicates that at least two Communities have tried settling the issue; the Commentary recommends trying the normal procedures in at least two or three.)
    3. Both sides have been made to reflect on their position
    4. The distributor of voting tickets knows that the majority sides with the Dhamma.
    5. He hopes that the majority sides with the Dhamma. 6.The distributor of voting tickets knows that the procedure will not lead to a split in the Sangha.
    7. He hopes that the procedure will not lead to a split in the Sangha.
    8. The tickets are taken in accordance with the Dhamma (according to the Commentary, this means that there is no cheating – e.g. one Bhikkhu taking two tickets – and the Dhamma side wins)
    9. The assembly is complete
    10. The bhikkhus take the tickets in accordance with their views (and not, for example, under fear of intimidation or coercion)” (Thanissaro Bhikkhu, Buddhist Monastic Code I, Chapter 11 – Adhikarana Samatha)
    This brings me to my first observation.
    The Referendum is Under Fear of Intimidation or Coercion
    (which invalidates the referendum according to #10)
    On January 26th, 2008, the referendum was conducted in Sera-Je monastery. On February 9th,, 2008 the referendum was conducted in Ganden-Shartse Monastery. Prior to either of these referendums there were actions already taken against Dorje Shugden monks. Here is the time line of events:
    On January 8th:
    In the assembly hall of Ganden-Jangtse Monastery, each monk had to stand up in turn and declare that he will never practise Dorje Shugden. Twelve monks who practise Dorje Shugden did not attend and were expelled from the monastery.
    In Phukang Khangtsen (also in Ganden-Shartse) signed statements were collected from each monk, declaring that the signatory never practises Dorje Shugden. Monks who do not want to sign the statement and take the oath to forego the practice of Dorje Shugden were pressured to do so. The signature and oath campaign was conducted in ten monastic sections. When the signatures were collected in Phukang Khangtsen, one monk was expelled for refusing to sign.
    On January 11th 2008:
    The abbot of Ganden Jangtse Monastery, Gen Rinpoche Geshe Lobsang Tsephel was publicly scolded by the Dalai Lama in a public meeting for being a Dorje Shugden practitioner. He was accused of being ‘two faced’ for seemingly following the Dalai Lama’s advice while secretly practising Dorje Shugden.
    Before any referendum was held at Sera-Je or Ganden-Shartse, monks were already being expelled and humiliated. This is a very important point.
    In the shadow of these events, the Ganden and Sera monks were asked to participate in a referendum for which they were already aware of the consequences should they vote against the majority. My question, is this what we call a referendum? Does it sound like this referendum was held wholly without intimidation or coercion? I ask the reader to consider how you would vote in such a situation if your livelihood was on the line, knowing as well that you would have no more access to physical or spiritual nourishment and would be effectively disowned by your spiritual family. Might it be more prudent to vote against Dorje Shugden in public while continuing to practice in secret? This is precisely what many lay and ordained Tibetans are doing.
    When these pre-loaded referendums were being held the Dorje Shugden practitioners had to cast their vote in the face of definite expulsion from their monastery. They also had to consider that non-Dorje Shugden practitioners had signed the oath to not to share material amenities of life. The choice made publically by Dorje Shugden practitioners would clearly impact their ability to survive outside the monastery. It is difficult to conclude that such a ‘choice’ is not coercion in its grossest form and that as such the Dalai Lama’s so-called referendums directly contradict the Vinaya and the spirit of Buddha’s teachings as a whole.

    The Referendum will lead to a split in the Sangha
    (which invalidates the referendum according to #6 and #7)
    The second question put forth by the Dalai Lama is: “[Whether] we want to share the religious and material amenities of life (live together in the monastery) with Dholgyal worshippers.”
    What this means is that practitioners who formerly lived together in the same Monastery would now not be able to use the same kitchen, do Sojong together, or use the same Khangtsen at all.

    “A schism (saṅgha-bheda, literally a split in the Saṅgha) is a division in the Community in which two groups of bhikkhus of common affiliation, with at least five in one group and four in the other, conduct Community business separately in the same territory.” (Thanissaro Bhikkhu, Buddhist Monastic Code II, Chapter 21)
    On February 7th 2008, in the assembly hall of Shartse Monastery, the disciplinarian – with tears in his eyes – announced: ‘Now Dhokhang Khangtsen will be separated from Shartse Monastery.’ This clearly meets Buddha’s definition of a schism (which I will explore in a future article). It is clear that the vote itself is on whether or not to split the Sangha. Thanissaro Bhikkhu’s commentary clearly indicates that if it is understood that the referendum would lead to a split in the Sangha the referendum is invalid.
    Furthermore, on the issue of how to handle a schism according to the Vinaya, the present Dalai Lama has not been following Buddha’s advice.
    “As for the laity, the texts quote the Buddha as saying that they should give gifts to both factions and listen to their Dhamma. Then, on consideration, they should give their preference to the Dhamma-faction. Notice, however, that in advising the laity to give preference to one faction over another, the Buddha does not say that only one faction should receive alms. After all, the laity may be misinformed about the Dhamma and in a poor position to tell the right faction from the wrong. At the same time, the Buddha has never been recorded as declaring a living being as unworthy of gifts, for that would be tantamount to saying that the being was unworthy to live.” (Thanissaro Bhikkhu, Buddhist Monastic Code II, Chapter 21)
    This means that the signature campaign being conducted in the lay community by the CTA (within which the Dalai Lama is the final authority) to not share material amenities with Dorje Shugden practitioners directly contradicts the Vinaya. The language of the Vinaya makes clear that both Dorje Shugden practitioners and non-Dorje Shugden practitioners should be able to purchase goods and receive services like any other Tibetan living in exile. If the reader has any doubts as to whether this discrimination is really happening please refer to the France24 documentary which reveals such religious discrimination. http://www.france24.com/en/20080808-dalai-lama-demons-india-buddhism-dorje-shugden
    The Referendum has not followed Buddha’s Protocols in the Vinaya
    (which invalidates the referendum according to #2)
    According to the commentary the referendum is only valid if the procedures of “in the presence of” have all been followed but have not succeeded in settling the issue. “In the presence of” means that the community has to meet and try to settle the issue before the referendum is taken (emphasis added). This has not happened. In fact, the Dalai Lama has never met with the community of Dorje Shugden monks from these monasteries. There has not even been a reply from the Dalai Lama or his representatives to the requests of Shugden practitioners to have a dialogue on this issue. This is a clear contradiction with the commentary given. The referendum is not the result of a meeting within the monastic community but rather it has been unilaterally decreed by the Dalai Lama himself (please refer to the January 8th, 2008 talk at Drepung for evidence of this).
    This brings up the question, is the Dalai Lama a member of these monastic communities? If the answer is yes, then he (or a representative of his) has to meet with the Dorje Shugden communities at these monasteries prior to any referendum. If the answer is no, which can be stated in terms of the Dalai Lama not residing within that monastery, then on what basis is he even involving himself? Where does the Vinaya say that to resolve a conflict, high lamas should adjudicate? This is what the Dalai Lama’s supporters are saying but it has no basis in Buddha’s teachings.
    Others might argue that the Dalai Lama is not involving himself but simply saying the matter should go to a vote. To refute this point please watch the france24 video (web link to this piece is above) where the Dalai Lama is on video saying from the teaching throne:
    “These monks must be expelled from all monasteries. If they are not happy, you can tell them that the Dalai Lama himself asked that this be done, and it is very urgent.”

    The most compelling argument on this point is that the Vinaya provides an opportunity for any monk in the assembly to protest against having the matter settled by the group. If this happens then the group is deemed incompetent to resolve the issue. The purpose of this is to protect the Dharma from bhikkhus who advocate what is not truly Dhamma or Vinaya yet hold sway over the group. Surely if such a meeting would have occurred the Dorje Shugden monks would have protested.
    The Outcome of the Referendum is not in Accordance with the Dharma
    (which invalidates the referendum according to #4, #5, and #8)
    Venerable Atisha said:
    “Friends, until you attain enlightenment the spiritual teacher is indispensable, therefore rely upon the holy Spiritual Guide. Until you realize ultimate truth, listening is indispensable, therefore listen to the instructions of the Spiritual Guide.”
    The referendum contradicts the words of this holy teacher because the practitioners of Dorje Shugden received a commitment to do this practice from their Gurus Trijang Rinpoche, Ling Rinpoche, Geshe Rabten, Zong Rinpoche, Dagom Rinpoche, etc. To abandon their teachers’ advice by voting in favor of the ban would be non-Dharma according to Venerable Atisha.
    The irony is that this puts the Dalai Lama and his followers in the position where if they are to establish their view as Dharma then they would have to say that Trijang Rinpoche and Ling Rinpoche (the Dalai Lama’s Gurus) taught non-Dharma thus invalidating his own teachers’ qualifications as authentic Gurus. How can a valid teacher teach non-Dharma? If the Dalai Lama’s teachers are not valid teachers then by what lineage is the Dalai Lama a lama himself?
    Therefore, for all the reasons mentioned here, the referendum on Dorje Shugden practice is non-Dharma. Since the Dalai Lama is presenting the referendum as Dharma when in reality it is non-Dharma he is deceiving Buddhist practitioners around the world.
    Furthermore, by denying these practitioners the basic necessities of life (by these I mean the aforementioned material amenities) the Dalai Lama and the abbots carrying out these referendums are breaking their refuge vows to Buddha which include not harming any living being.
    Typically, those who have spoken out against the Dalai Lama on this issue have been portrayed as gullible, naive, and unaware of the harmfulness of Dorje Shugden. I would like to point out however that those in the Tibetan and Western communities who practice Dorje Shugden have experienced considerable slander and libel thus making this issue a point of internal reflection and consideration for many of us. This article is the result of one Dorje Shugden practitioner’s investigation, my own. What I ask to all those who disagree, can you establish – based on Buddha’s teachings – the validity of these referendums?

  253. On 18th Sept Namdrol said:

    “Written teachings are inherently more reliable than oral teachings since oral teachings that are not written down are easily lost and easily garbled.”

    Today Namdrol says:

    “However, can we really regard Ganden Chopel’s account, written 250 years as authoritative? I don’t think so.”

    It is clear that your method of debate is to ignore the truth and, just like an ordinary politician, to say whatever suits the moment.

    If one were to accept your first statement (which I do not) then on what grounds, pray, could we possibly accept the second (I do not accept this is true either)?

  254. Hello SC

    You asked:

    “Sakya say Virupa took no rebirths. 750 or more years later certain Gelugpas claim he did. Now surely, you would agree, both can’t be right. So my only point is that if Shugdenpas are going to come along 750 years after the event and claim Sakyas are entirely wrong, it would be instructive to hear why. Surely that’s reasonable?”

    Shugdenpas are not claiming that Sakya is wrong – please don’t misunderstand my intentions. I want there to be harmony between all traditions. What Shugden people believe about the reincarnations is beneficial for them – it helps increase their faith; what Sakya believe is also beneficial and helps increase their faith. It isn’t necessary for either group to win a debate about who’s lineage gurus are right and who’s not in this respect. The point is both schools are satisfied with their teachers and enjoy Dharma.

    As I said before you and I do not understand what our realized lineage gurus understand yet…but if we have deep faith in them and follow their advice, receive blessings and train our minds in holy Dharma we can transcend this ordinary reality and attain that understanding.

    In Shakyamuni’s Sutras and Tantras there are many, many apparent contradictions. But if a student keeps faith and trust in his/her teacher(s) then these will all be resolved in time through the teacher’s explanations and blessings. It is the same with regards to these lists of reincarnations. We simply do not know at the moment. But if we have faith then we can know.

    Problems arise when faith is destroyed. We each need to believe what is conducive to peace and virtue. Why can’t we both be right? If it is beneficial and causes no harm or problem for others.

    Apart from ourselves we have no idea about other who people really are – whether they are ordinary or emanations.

    As explained in the “Lama Policy” article above and others I’ve posted there are two views about Protectors such Dorje Shugden – a worldly view and the view held by a qualified practitioner. Grasping at the worldly view stops any spiritual development; whereas following the view as perceived by highly realized teachers is very beneficial – even for someone like myself who has no realizations.

    Sadly, the Dalai Lama follows worldly views because he doesn’t trust his own teachers; thus there will continue to be problems for as long as this persists.

    If we follow the view of higher beings then all such problems disappear as our wisdom naturally develops.

  255. Ah, dear Namdrol….

    You said:
    “Ironically, these days you all slander the Fifth at the same time you try to employ him as proof. So why should we believe you when you use such devices?”

    It has been clearly explained that the 5th Dalai Lama firstly, out of fear, made a big mistake about Dorje Shugden viewing him as a worldly spirit – much in the way you yourself do now. Later he understood his mistake, generated deep regret, recognized Shugden as an enlightened Protector and made lifelong prayers to him.

    Why is this “a device”?

    The 14th Dalai Lama, sadly, is doing the opposite of the 5th and therefore his own wisdom is in decline.

  256. Well, lots going on here eh? I naturally agree with kadampa as we follow the same lineage. Just to repeat from that old mail and just to set something straight about how Protetors are viewed…

    And then you (Namdrol) said:

    >Yes, Sakya Trizin is my root Guru. He maintains that Shugden >is a) harmful b) mundane. The fact is that Shugden is deity >practice in Sakya mainly by the Khon family in Sakya >monastery proper. The Ngorpas and the Tharpas
    >have never adopted this practice.

    Perhaps I could put forward the following ideas here. There are 3 possible explanations:

    1.You are lying
    2. Sakya Trizin is lying
    3. There are two ways of regarding Dorje Shugden in the Sakya lineage – openly and secretly.

    Then as both you and Sakya Trizin are Buddhists and would not lie, we have to conclude that the third is the only reasonable explanation for the differences between us on this matter.

    Also, can you say for sure that Sakya Trizin has never explained to any of his other disciples a different way of perceiving Dorje Shugden? Are you omniscient? Namdrol, you may know a lot but I suspect you do not know everything. Or are you claiming to be enlightened?

    As a great Teacher, Sakya Trizin would explain what is most
    beneficial according to the karmic connections of each of his students. Even Buddha himself taught in this way.

    You also said:

    >BY claiming a Sakyapa origin for your views, you are in effect
    >misrepresenting and attacking Sakya.

    No-one here is attacking Sakya. Relax. We are telling you what our lineage gurus have explained to us.

    Namdrol, why should written records, even Tibetan ones, be such an authoritative source of knowledge? People can write down anything – that does not make it a truth. Oral lineages remain oral because there’s no karma for them to be written down. It doesn’t mean that they are wrong. Buddha himself and his immediate disciples maintained only oral lineages.

    BTW another friend told me that one of the high Sakya Lamas
    said directly that there was/is a line of Sakyas that secretly rely
    upon Dorje Shugden as an enlightened Protector but this person didn’t wish to be quoted publicly. Why not? In the current climate in Tibetan Buddhism does that question really need an answer? Why should a high Sakya lama rely secretly? Why do people not want to be quoted publicly? Why are we having this debate?”

    deja view, glitch in the matrix. Bye bye…..

  257. Kadampa:

    Obviously, Ganden Chophel’s pilgrimage guide is not “written teachings” but rather a compendium of various pilgrimage sites and their associated traditions.

  258. Shugdenpa:

    “BTW another friend told me that one of the high Sakya Lamas
    said directly that there was/is a line of Sakyas that secretly rely
    upon Dorje Shugden as an enlightened Protector but this person didn’t wish to be quoted publicly. ”

    You expect us credit any sort of hearsay that you people spin?

    You people are such liars.

    N

  259. “It has been clearly explained that the 5th Dalai Lama firstly, out of fear, made a big mistake about Dorje Shugden viewing him as a worldly spirit – much in the way you yourself do now. Later he understood his mistake, generated deep regret, recognized Shugden as an enlightened Protector and made lifelong prayers to him.”

    This is a baldface lie.

  260. A quick reminder: this is my personal blog, and I expect people to treat each other respectfully. There is a difference between saying “your stance is a lot of hogwash and here is why” and saying about the person “you’re full of sh*t.”

    I appreciate the rigor of the debate that has been going on here for, oh, five months now. But, let’s keep it respectful and not engage in name-calling.

    Thank you.

  261. Hi Kadampa

    “In Shakyamuni’s Sutras and Tantras there are many, many apparent contradictions. But if a student keeps faith and trust in his/her teacher(s) then these will all be resolved in time through the teacher’s explanations and blessings. It is the same with regards to these lists of reincarnations. We simply do not know at the moment. But if we have faith then we can know.”

    But I don’t understand how you could resolve the contradiction that you believed the Fifth Dalai Lama killed Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen while Trijang Rinpoche did not.

    Trijang was very careful about absolving the Fifth Dalai Lama of any wrongdoing on TDG’s death.

    Who shall I believe??

    Best

    Shaza

  262. Hi WJ

    “So it’s possible even you could be wrong then? If so, who is most likely to be wrong based on the balance of probabilities?”

    the list was pretty much a camouflage..a casual glance will tell you quite a handful on that list like Lati Rinpoche, Khensur Rinpoche Lobsang Tharchin have given up the practice….i doubt Zasap Rinpoche has not already given it up the practice (if he had practiced it at all) since he’s a student of Lati Rinpoche and respected the Dalai Lama.. don’t know about Khejok Rinpoche……can certainly ask around..

    Best

    Shaza

  263. I’m quite out of my depth in this debate, but if all Namdrol can come up with after Kadampa’s extensive reasoning is “You people are such liars”… I don’t know what to think… If there is no argument or debate, calling someone a liar just becomes name-calling if you ask me.

  264. Although we childish beings have no wish for suffering,
    We are greatly attached to its causes.
    Thus, the harm we receive is entirely our fault;
    What reason is there to blame it on others?

    Just as with the guardians of hell,
    The forest of razor-sharp leaves, and so forth,
    My sufferings in this life result from my actions –
    So with whom should I be angry?

    Although those who harm me
    Are provoked into doing so by my own karma, (amazing isn’t it?)
    It is they who will take rebirth in hell as a result;
    So, is it not I who harm them?

    By depending upon them as my objects of patience,
    I can purify many non-virtues;
    But by depending upon me as their object of anger,
    They will fall for a long time into hellish states of suffering.

    Thus, since it is I who inflict harm them
    And they who benefit me,
    Why, unruly mind, do you distort things so
    By becoming angry with them?

  265. . . . . that time was running out. Something had to be done, but not just anything. It had to clever, quick-witted, and most important of all: effective.

    what say you evil wizard ?

  266. It’s plain that Shugden is not a harmful practice. It doesn’t take a great knowledge of Tibetan history to conclude this. It simply takes an understanding of this phenomenon – witch naming, which has existed in countless cultures around the world, even in western European cultures. I will be writing something about this on my own blog soon as in fact I studied this phenomenon in rural South Africa. This activity is a kind of scapegoating activity and is well documented and studied. If you’d like to get acquainted with it, I recommend reading Gardner to gain some familiarity with the material. I will revisit my thesis and can perhaps give anyone interested some other reference material.

    I don’t believe Shugdenites will ever succeed in winning this debate against their persecutors (Namdrol and friends) as long as they engage in the same hocus pocus dialogue. It’s like trying to argue you’re not a witch when all the evidence concludes you are. This did not work for most witches in medieval Europe and it’s not going to work for Shugdenites arguing in a context steeped in Tibetan medieval thinking.

    Most of us are westerners with western values and frames of reference. We do not need to engage in ludicrous discussions on who emanated as who or why or whatnot to illustrate that the current persecution is both wrong and unreasonable. This matter is plainly an infringement on people’s rights and we need to appeal to common sense, logic and human decency. We can do that to westerners as westerners. On those grounds, I don’t believe anti-Shugdenites have a case. Of course, if you want to take on Namdrol in his own territory, go ahead. But I don’t think it’s going to be effective.

  267. “Well, if truth be told, I was kinda hoping for one of my emanations to take care of this. I mean after all it is nearly “The Brady Bunch” hour and by now we all know what that means.”

  268. O yes . . . From the corner of her eye she caught a brief flash. Fixating her gaze upon the distant horizon her heart leaped as she clearly saw that unmistakable flash again, and this time she knew that there could be no other source, it must be the beacon of her only lighthouse. Yet still she was plagued by a lingering doubt. Perhaps, could it be, that she was being deceived by truth’s shadow . . . ?

  269. Hi WJ,

    “I don’t believe Shugdenites will ever succeed in winning this debate against their persecutors (Namdrol and friends) as long as they engage in the same hocus pocus dialogue.”

    Now you don’t want to be my friend anymore? Ain’t I “Ron and friends” as well? ><

    …………………………………………

    Anyway, if you don’t like medieval history books, there is something more recent…

    “The way to progress through and complete the fourteen grounds of Highest Yoga Tantra is gradually to practice and complete the practices of the two stages – generation stage and completion stage. These days many people talk about Tantra, but there are few who teach the two stages. There are even teachers who never mention the two stages and yet claim to be teaching something even higher than Highest Yoga Tantra! I wonder what sort of Buddhahood these so-called Tantric Masters attain? It must be a very deluded kind of Buddhahood! Rather than following these ‘modern Buddhas’, we would do much better to emulate the great Yogis of the past, such as the eigthy-four Mahasiddhas and especially the highly renowned Nagarjuna.

    There are predictions that as times become more impure people will become increasingly attracted to false Dharma and begin to show contempt for pure Dharma. False Dharma will flourish widely and it will become more and more difficult to meet pure Dharma. Since these predictions seem to be coming true, we are extremely fourtunate to have met the pure and authentic teachings of Je Tsongkhapa.” (p.54,55, Tantric Grounds and Path,1994)

    Reading this passage confirms my suspicion that GKG is indeed quite sectarian.

    And I was surprised Lucy James et al did not tone it down while editing the book for NKTers. Or maybe she did already.

    Best

    Shaza

  270. I might be simple, of that I have no doubt, but can someone, please answer me one simple question……

    If Shugden, Manjushri and Tsongkhapa are the same person, the same mental continuum then why can’t one end this struggle by just forgetting about the mere name ‘Shugden’ and take refuge in Tsongkhapa and Manjushri.

    Just let go……………… then freedom……….

    NAhh…. too simple?

  271. yes too simple.

    Who would you rather watch, Kobe Bryant sitting peacefully on the bench or all pumped up and in full gear on a match?

    that’s kinda how some of them look at it..

    Best

    Shaza

  272. LB:

    These folks are engaged in the worst sort of lying, and spin. They must have taken seminars with Karl Rove.

    They have elevated their lies to trying to rewrite the record of what happened in 17th century Lhasa, and in the 20th century. Fortunately, we have a lot of actual records from that period, recorded in the autobiographies of many people.

    They have nothing but legend and rumor. The historical facts stand on our side, and not theirs.

    N

  273. sea watt eye mean ?

    “My feet ain’t got nothing to do with my nickname, but when folks get it in their heads that a feller’s got big feet, soon the feet start looking big.”

  274. Namdrol,

    Your defense to my criticism is to say: “well look what they’re doing!”. Is this a justification of your actions? I’ve tried to find other meanings in your post but failed. It again shows me that you fall into the type of playground mentality that most people who are very attached to their own views fall into.

    If you say that “these folks are engaged in the worst sort of lying, and spin” and then justify your actions by saying “well, they do it too”, then you’re hardly reliable yourself, am i incorrect?

  275. 1. Namdrol, where are your remarks concerning the 14th Dalai Lama’s breaking of the Vinaya Moral Discipline explained in the lengthy article I quoted above?

    Your silence indicates agreement on all the points made.

    2. After reading Ron Cook’s article giving 6 principal reasons why the Dalai Lama is not a Buddhist you provided no refutations.

    Your silence indicates agreement on all the points made.

    3. After you, Namdrol, had said:
    “This kind of hyperbole is nonsense. No one is persecuting Dolgyal practitioners.”

    And then I quoted a great deal of evidence to show the opposite is true you did neither withdraw your allegation nor apologize for your mistake.

    Your silence indicates agreement on all the points made.

    3. After shugdenpa again quoted:
    “BTW another friend told me that one of the high Sakya Lamas
    said directly that there was/is a line of Sakyas that secretly rely
    upon Dorje Shugden as an enlightened Protector but this person didn’t wish to be quoted publicly. ”
    – and explained that – maybe no-one was lying but that there are two different ways to perceive Protectors – all you can do is to throw back an insult!

    It is crystal clear that you have no interest in civil debate instead preferring the tactics of what in the UK we call “the gutter press”, which is to say, liberal use of insults and obscenities, making personal attacks and discrediting of contributors, but worst of all – and this is specific to you – using the holy Dharma for worldly purposes, reputation, renown and infamy.

    Previously, in a reply to SC, I explained that nothing I have said or quoted was intended to criticize or attack your lineage or your teachers. Anything I have asked you has been for the purpose of clarification and in the spirit of reasoned debate.

    However, without any compassion, for 12 years you have single-pointedly insulted, negatively criticized and humiliated the lineage holders of Je Tsongkhapa’s tradition. Your purpose is exactly that of the Dalai Lama – whether you consider yourself an independent agent or not does not matter – this is your activity and your intention is to destroy the lineage of Je Tsongkhapa and fulfil the Dalai Lama’s wishes.

    Your silence (excepting insults etc) and inability to refute the many points presented above about the Dalai Lama’s behaviour indicates that you accept these points and are therefore defeated comprehensively on all issues.

  276. thatz guilt by omission eh? well may bee . . . but a very-ashun on this classic might help.

    “To toot or refute ~ that is the question
    Whether tis nobler in the mind to consume 1000 plates of frijoles
    Or by thus digesting, offend them.”

    Human beans is a mighty strange breed eh? after suckin down a few gallons or real alley tea eye find a tasty mint and a nap is often quite helpful ~ may be hez just sleepinit off . . .

  277. Hello Hongkongphoey,

    Buddhas appear in different aspects for a reason, it’s not just a game of masks and names. I don’t know much about other traditions, but in the NKT it is explained that DS arose to protect the tradition of Je Tsongkhapa. Some Lamas realized that DS was the most suitable person to protect this lineage. Because we still wish to preserve the blessings of this lineage we rely on DS, as he promised to protect them. Practitioners of Yamantaka have their reasons to rely upon Manjushri in this form, and the same goes for Kalarupa (Avalokiteshvara) and many other practices. It’s out of the question to ban these people from practicing their deities saying that it doesn’t matter because they can always rely upon other deities in the same mental continuum.

    The main point really, is that the DL has no right to barge in and forcefully stop us from relying upon DS. In the same way that i won’t stand for a bully telling me which parts of town i can or can’t walk in, i don’t stand for a politician telling me what spiritual practices make me Buddhist or not so. And i certainly don’t stand for the human rights abuses that have taken place.

    What would you like us to do, drop our practices and close our eyes to what we perceive as large injustices?

    Peace

  278. Hongkongphoey,

    There is a common misconception floating around that DS practitioners place more importance on DS than on Buddha himself. In the NKT this idea has no basis. The purpose of the NKT is to promote the wisdom of Buddha Shakyamuni. We rely on the precious tradition of Je Tsongkhapa to do so. The purpose of Je Tsongkhapa’s tradition is to promote Buddha Shakyamuni’s wisdom.

    DS is not more important than JT. However one could argue that DS is no less important than JT (for NKT) because without him our lineage is not protected. Without DS it is possible that our lineage would be non-existent now, having degenerated long ago. For this reason i think we can say that DS is as important to us as JT, because without him we wouldn’t have JT in the first place.

    This is just the opinion of moi, an unexperienced beginner so people please point out my mistakes.

    Note about the misconception: There are many things that indicate the falsity of this rumour. An obvious one that springs to mind is that every formal NKT practice (usually including GP for beginners) is commenced with a prayer to Buddha Shakyamuni. Also, JT’s teachings are all about Buddha’s teachings. Since all NKT’s teachings are based on JT’s works, it is logical to conclude that the NKT’s essential emphasis is Buddha’s teachings. Then there is the fact that since the principal function of DS is to protect JT’s teachings (i.e. BS’s teachings) it would be irrational to deduce that DS is more important than JT and BS.

  279. On Killing and The Dalai Lama

    Shaza said:

    “But I don’t understand how you could resolve the contradiction that you believed the Fifth Dalai Lama killed Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen while Trijang Rinpoche did not.

    Trijang was very careful about absolving the Fifth Dalai Lama of any wrongdoing on TDG’s death.”

    I think, in fact, dear Shaza, you already understand what I now say below…

    Trijang Rinpoche, although spiritual head of the Gelugpas, and root guru of the Dalai Lama, like all lamas and people in Tibetan society had no freedom to speak out (they still don’t). If they ever go against the wishes of the Dalai Lama then their very lives are in danger. Look what happened to Zemey Rinpoche – who dedicated his life to the Dalai Lama but as soon as he displeased him he was cruelly banished, suffered a stroke, lost his speech and died. This kind of treatment from the Dalai Dictators is very common in that totalitarian society. There are many stories of people dying, disappearing etc. who have gone against the Dalai Lama. We Western people have no idea what it can be like and so it very easy for us to be manipulated by clever people with access to Tibetan history books.

    It was, and still is, necessary to verbally follow the wishes of the Dalai lama even though it may not be their real intention. So I believe it is quite possible that on this occasion Trijang Rinpoche did not believe what he wrote but simply recorded it to please the Dalai Lama. Just like writing a long-life prayer indicating the Dalai Lama is enlightened does not make it true that he believed he was enlightened – it is just a tradition.

    Regarding this whole business of following texts alone from Tibet we Westerners need to be very, very careful. This clinging to the written word is where Namdrol often goes wrong. Texts can be easily changed, with important details either deleted or inserted – and this is what I believe happened to many of these “historical” texts in Tibet, changed for political reasons. For example, I have read an account of one of the 5th’s close people insisting on changes to the lineages of incarnations of famous lamas – against the wishes of high lamas – only the 5th and his non-Dharma minsters had power; also in the 5th’s biographies it looks as if he had no idea who killed Ngatrul Dragpa Gyaltsen – but this can’t be true – as the Dalai Lama he will have known everything – like any political leader he will have had a network of informants. This kind of rewriting of history has always happened in totalitarian (ie. non-democratic) societies where information is carefully controlled and there is no freedom of speech. My main point is that because things are written in books it does not make them true – they may be true or they may not be true.

    The account given by WSS on “Lama Policy” has come out in a free society where people largely speak without fear – it will be interesting to see further explanations of what Tibetan people – freed to some extent from the grip of the Dalai Lama – will be able to tell us about the truth of the situation in Tibet. (Although people like Namdrol dismiss this information in “Lama Policy” – in reality they have no method to disprove it.) Of course it is still dangerous for Tibetans to be named even though they may be citizens of other countries – death threats are common. (I myself have received one recently – directly BTW – not through the mail.)

    I am looking forward to the new truths emerging now that Tibetan exiles understand something about the use of free speech. It reminds me of the breath of fresh air in the 1960’s/70’s when Solzhenitsyn published his truths about Stalin’s Gulags, purges etc. and finally, after decades of denial, Western left/liberals, were forced to accept the full horror of the Soviet repressions and purges of the 1930’s and to stop defending “good old Uncle Joe”.

    The Dalai Lama’s repressions are not killing millions of people but actually doing something worse – destroying the spiritual lives of millions. So the truth about this has to come out now……it is very, very wrong and it cannot go on. It must be stopped.

  280. Harry:

    “If you say that “these folks are engaged in the worst sort of lying, and spin” and then justify your actions by saying “well, they do it too”, then you’re hardly reliable yourself, am i incorrect?”

    I haven’t been lying to anyone, nor spin doctoring.

  281. Namdrol,

    If you read our conversation from post 321, where you accuse certain people of being liars, you will see that in none of those posts am i suggesting you are lying or spinning any doctors.

    -You replied to Kadampa and Shugden’s posts with little more than insults.

    -I criticized you for this.

    -You replied to my criticism with: “Seen the WSS website lately?”.

    I.e. instead of refuting my criticism you simply say something like: “well the WSS do it too”. It appears that you justify your behaviour by pointing your finger at another entity, the WSS.

    -In your next post to someone else you said about members of WSS and other DS supporters: “These folks are engaged in the worst sort of lying, and spin…” and more slander.

    -I criticize you again: “If you say that “these folks are engaged in the worst sort of lying, and spin” and then justify your actions by saying “well, they do it too”, then you’re hardly reliable yourself”.

    -Finally you ignore my meaning again and seem to turn it on others by saying “i haven’t been lying to anyone, nor spin doctoring”.

    It is quite simple. Please stop trying to turn it around on others. Either refute my criticisms properly, or don’t bother. It’s getting boring.

  282. This is exactly the kind of spin I am talking about:

    “If they ever go against the wishes of the Dalai Lama then their very lives are in danger. Look what happened to Zemey Rinpoche – who dedicated his life to the Dalai Lama but as soon as he displeased him he was cruelly banished, suffered a stroke, lost his speech and died.”

    This draws the false conclusion that Zemey suffered a stroke and died because HHDL dismissed Zemey from his post. Ergo, the Dalai Lama killed Zemey.

    This is exactly the type of lie that the WSS/NKT people feel absolutely no compunction to resist relating.

    He goes on to say:

    “This kind of treatment from the Dalai Dictators is very common in that totalitarian society. There are many stories of people dying, disappearing etc. who have gone against the Dalai Lama.”

    This is of course complete nonsense– this is mere slander. Drawing yet more false conclusions from false premises.

    The so called “Lama Policy” is a fabric of outright lies where it is not a distortion.

  283. “Your silence indicates agreement on all the points made.”

    No, it does not. It indicates that I have no interest in addressing each and every one of your errors.

  284. “Your silence (excepting insults etc) and inability to refute the many points presented above about the Dalai Lama’s behaviour indicates that you accept these points and are therefore defeated comprehensively on all issues.”

    You wish.

  285. Shaza

    Sure Ron and friends applies too.

    But I don’t know what is so sectarian about that passage. GCG simply has faith and confidence in his lineage. To say that there are ‘false dharmas’ may seen harsh, but it doens’t mean he is sectarian. After all, looking all the new age stuff around today that has nothing to do with any lineage teachings, or has deviated very far from them. Just google Tantra and you’ll find some wonderfully tantalising services on offer that have actually very little to do with Secret Mantra.

    All he’s saying is, this is bona fide. This is authentic lineage.

  286. Namdrol,

    “This website is full of lies, falsehoods, and fabrications, that is the point.”

    This you say is your point. My point was different, and clear in my posts.

  287. “This you say is your point. My point was different, and clear in my posts.”

    The only thing that matters here is the lies being manufactured by Kadampa and his cronies.

    N

  288. Your point is quite clear in those isolated words. My point was that while saying these words, which you so often repeat, you evaded my criticism.

    And continue to evade.

    Your initial accusation of lying (the one i originally criticized) was of Khyenrab 10 years ago, not WSS.

    These are my last words on the subject, as this is going in the usual direction. Unless of course you decide to bring something to the points i raised.

  289. “The only thing that matters here is the lies being manufactured by Kadampa and his cronies.”

    An extreme view if you ask me. Indeed, you seem to hold on to this view whilst thinking that correct speech and respect, amongst other things, are of no importance. If this is the case, this view could well be your downfall if you fail to address it.

    What matters is the unveiling of truth.

    To unveil truth, untruths must be unveiled first. There seems to be much untruth on both sides. We need to start working together and not against each other. Blaming everything on one side is typical of bias.

  290. Point 1: Abandoning Buddhist refuge.

    WSS assertion:

    “None of these practices of reliance were taught by Buddha and are in direct contradiction to the refuge vows”

    Using oracles does not constitute taking refuge in oracles. Therefore, this point is rejected.

    Point 2: Abandoning reliance upon the Spiritual Guide

    WSS assertion:

    “This action of deleting the names of lineage gurus demonstrates without any doubt that he is not a Buddhist.”

    First, there is no proof that Dalai Lama has done this. Second, there are many lineages for any given practice. Third, altering sadhana texts is not proof that someone is not a Buddhist when there are many alternate lineages for the same practice. Fourth, asserting that some lineage Guru was mistaken, does not imply abandonment of the lineage. For example, Pabhongkha declared that apart from the founders of Sakya, all other Sakyas, including his Guru, Zimog Tulku, had wrong views and were going to hell. If we are to accept this reasoning, WSS must accept that Pabhongkha was not a Buddhist and therefor, they are not Buddhists since he is their lineage Guru.

    3) Abandoning sentient beings

    WSS assertion:

    “The Dalai Lama’s absence of compassion, the very essence of Buddhadharma, shows he is not a practicing Buddhist”

    This assertion lacks any substance. The author cannot know this with any certainty. A single act of compassion is sufficient to negate this assertion, and HHDL acts with compassion daily.

    4) Committing one of the five heinous actions

    WSS assertion:

    “These are: killing one’s father; killing one’s mother; killing a Foe Destroyer; maliciously wounding a Buddha; or causing a schism within the Sangha. It is this last action that the Dalai Lama is guilty of.”

    This is the most inane of these six points– why? Because in order to be guilty of this, one has to start a new religion by proclaiming that one’s teaching is better than that of Shakyamuni Buddha. For example, if someone claims that the Vinaya of the Buddha is presently irrelevant and replaces the traditional Vinaya with a newly fabricated ordination.

    Since the Dalai Lama still ordains thousands of Bhikshus every year in the traditional manner and has never declared he has a better religion that of Shakyamuni Buddha, since he has faith in the Buddha, this charge is completely absurd.

    5) Linking the survival of Buddhism with the survival of Tibet

    WSS assertion:

    “In the final analysis, his mixing politics with Buddhism is a clear contradiction to, and mockery of Buddha’s teachings. Again, how can he be considered to be a Buddhist?”

    Quite easily– the King of Thailand is also the head of the monastic Sangha in that country. Asoka used political power to benefit Buddhism, as did King Kanishka, Tri Srong Detsen, Lha Lama Yeshe Od, Sakya Pandita, Chogyal Phagpa, and whole host of other Buddhist Kings and monks like Sapan who were made rulers of their countries. If HHDL is criticized for not being a Buddhist on the basis of wielding political power and being a monk, then the same criticism must apply to Sakya Pandita, or in fact Trijiang Rinpoche, who was the most politically powerful persons in the exile government.

    6) Destroying the meaning of Buddhist ordination

    WSS assertion:

    “The Dalai Lama has often attended frivolous Hollywood parties and other celebrity driven events. He frequently meets with world leaders to discuss politics. He enjoys a lavish samsaric lifestyle. He always appears at these events wearing the robes of a monk.

    These are not the actions of an authentic ordained Buddhist monk or Buddhist leader.”

    Apparently this author is as unlearned in Mahayana tenets as he is Shravakayana– The Mahayana Discernment of Vinaya Sutra states:

    “Whatever is the the completely pure discipline of a shravaka, that is the thoroughly impure discipline and very corrupt discipline of a bodhisattva who has entered Mahayana,. Whatever is the completely pure discipline of a bodhisattva who has entered Mahayana is the thoroughly impure discipline and very corrupt discpline of a shravaka”

    And as Sapan says:

    “Most of a disciple’s (shravaka) virtue
    is a bodhisattva’s non-virtue, and conversely
    a bodhisattva’s virtue is said to be a non-virtue
    for the disciple.”

    His Holiness, the Dalai Lama, is a Buddhist monk who belongs to the Mahayana. His conduct therefore is not subject to the same strictures as Hinayana monks.

    And there is also the tale of a previous incarnation of the Buddha who criticized another monk of lax discipline for spending time in towns and taverns with the lay people in the evening. The Buddha took 500 rebirths in lower realms for such criticism, while the monk who has the object of criticism swiftly became a Buddha from his merit in bringing the Dharma to all.

    So this final charge is rejected.

    On the face of it, these six charges are absurd, poorly written, hysterical and obviously not well thought out. Time does not permit me reject them on every point– but I have found the central assertion in each one and rebutted it completely.

    I hadn’t bothered to refute these six points previously, because of their low caliber, but since others insist, I have obliged.

    N

  291. Oh look, i just found this on TP’s site (http://westernshugdensociety.wordpress.com/2008/09/18/information-about-the-new-kadampa-tradition/#comments).

    It is a very clear example, Namdrol, of how untruths are’nt just being spun out by NKT and WSS like you would like to claim.

    First, TP explains: “The childish ones perceive themselves as wise and the wise ones to be childish, and driven by their deluded perception they ruin the great purpose of their life.”

    Then he gives these examples from NKT literature:

    “The great Kadampa Teachers are famous not only for being great scholars but also for being spiritual practitioners of immense purity and sincerity. (quote of a often use phrase in NKT advertisement. Although this refers to the ancient teachers like Atisha, NKT presents themselves as the continuation of those high masters, as the “pure lineage”, as the Kadampas of our time and as being “pure practitioners”.)”

    Of course! We see our tradition, derived from these masters, as a continuation of them. It is in accordance with pure view, right? Isn’t this how all Buddhists view their trads? However i’ve seldom come across an NKTer who thinks that they themselves are a pure practitioner. I find them a generally humble bunch. Exceptions exist like everywhere. We simply have much appreciation of our masters and strive to keep their tradition pure. This is not deluded pride.

    “The New Kadampa Tradition is a special Kadampa tradition of Mahayana Buddhism founded by Venerable Geshe Kelsang Gyatso. [..] Through the kind efforts and pure wishes of our Venerable Teacher, Geshe Kelsang Gyatso, the sun of Je Tsongkhapa’s Kadam Dharma, having risen from behind the Eastern Snow Mountains, now radiates to many countries throughout the world. Through the pure thoughts and actions of Kadampa Buddhists, now and in the future, may the teachings, example and blessings of the Buddha and Je Tsongkhapa continue to remain and flourish for the greater good and happiness of all beings. (James Belither, former NKT Secretary in Modern Day Kadampas, The History and Development of the New Kadampa Tradition)”

    This is simply faith and respect. You find these praises written by disciples everywhere in Buddhism. Quite normal and common. This is how NKTers view KG. KG views himself much in accordance with TP’s words from above. He tends to refer to himself as ignorant and foolish, and his demeanor on the throne is often that of a child. I understand many people choose to see this as an act. I’ve watched him for years and have never personally felt him to be deceiving people in this way.

    The second half of the paragraph seems more like a dedication than self-praise.

    It seems clear to me from this type of thing that the non-DS party also engages in dubious tactics. Therefore i cannot go with your view that the only important thing is to uncover the untruths “being manufactured by Kadampa and his cronies”. May we uncover all untruths, and discover the universal truths that bind us.

    Peace.

  292. Yeah, well, I have to agree with you Namdrol. They’re very stupid points. And even I could refute them. In fact, I wrote a rebuttal but thought it was counter-productive to post it.

  293. Hi Namdrol,

    You make a good point about various masters having been politicians.

    What is your opinion on Shantideva and co’s advice against getting involved in politics?

  294. Hi WJ,

    “Just google Tantra and you’ll find some wonderfully tantalising services on offer that have actually very little to do with Secret Mantra.
    All he’s saying is, this is bona fide. This is authentic lineage.”

    Yes. It’s possilble that GKG is attacking some isolated cases in the New Age phenonmena.

    But I think he’s more specific about what he attacks when he says: “There are even teachers who never mention the two stages and yet claim to be teaching something even higher than Highest Yoga Tantra! I wonder what sort of Buddhahood these so-called Tantric Masters attain? It must be a very deluded kind of Buddhahood! ”

    For instance, Dzogchen teachings and Gampopa’s Mahamudra are considered by some traditions to be ‘higher’ than HYT, and incidentally without the two stages.

    I don’t mind if he has doctrinal differences. People debate about them everyday. But calling them ‘false dharma’ that led to ‘deluded Buddhahood’ is a little unbecoming of him.

    Best

    Shaza

  295. Namdrol, you said:

    “Time does not permit me reject them on every point– but I have found the central assertion in each one and rebutted it completely.”

    But of course, following Tenzin Peljor’s technique, you have been extremely selective in your comments and have rebutted precisely none of the main points. In fact you have chosen to ignore (as usual) all the main points and have given merely the illusion of reply, dressed up as usual in sneer.

    For example, the central point about the Dalai Lama abandoning Buddhist refuge is to do with the reliance he places on Nechung – the being universally acknowledged as a wordly spirit. Here are some of Nechung’s pronouncements about Dorje Shugden:

    1st answer of the State Oracle: “Dorje Shugden a powerful deity, only to be worshiped by beings with high realizations. However worshiping this deity would upset Goddess Palden Lhamo”

    2nd answer of the State Oracle: “the deity is appropriate to be worshiped by an individual, but not by a group”

    3rd answer of the State Oracle: “Dorje Shugden is a deity, suitable to the others, but not to the successor of the 5th Dalai Lama and those working for the Gaden Phodrang Government established by the 5th Dalai Lama.”

    4th answer of the State Oracle: “Dorje Shugden is a spirit born out of a Kagyupa-monk who hated the Tibetan government, and not the incarnation of Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen”

    5th answer of the State Oracle: “Dorje Shugden is the spirit of Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen, whose Samaya bond to the 5th Dalai Lama was not good, thus it is harmful for this government.”

    6th answer of the State Oracle: “Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen was a good lama, whose works of composition are praiseworthy, therefore Dorje Shugden cannot be the spirit of such a master.”

    7th answer of the State Oracle: “Tulku Dragpa Gyaltsen himself was a false Tulku, who came to be among the candidates for the 5th Dalai Lama and failed to be chosen, but through clever tactics of his mother on the first Panchen Lama Chokyi Gyaltsen, he was recognized as the fourth reincarnation of Panchen Sonam Dragpa (the teacher of 3rd Dalai Lama), but was then born as an evil, trouble-making spirit to harm the Tibetan government.”
    This spirit (Nechung) was consulted by the Dalai Lama through the oracle for advice on this business of religious discrimination. Even though these 7 answers are contradictory in the extreme nevertheless the Dalai Lama paid attention to them all. Hence we see so many contradictory statements from the Dalai Lama himself. It is obvious he has abandoned Buddhist refuge and -worse still – through his example is showing others how to do the same.

    May I ask you, Namdrol, as a person considered to be educated, would you yourself follow these pieces of “advice” from this spirit in the way the Dalai Lama has done?

    If you reply yes, then just like the Dalai Lama you are going for refuge to worldly spirits and abandoning refuge in the Three Jewels. If you reply no then you will have to eat all the words of hate that you have spread about Dorje Shugden practice. What is your answer?

    Another point made by Ron Cook is that if the Dalai Lama was actually taking Buddhist refuge then, on the assumption that Shugden was a harmful spirit, he would not need to fear anything as Buddhist refuge is perfect protection. Therefore, by acting in your unacceptable and sectarian ways you and the Dalai Lama can be shown to not be taking refuge in the Three Jewels.

    In reality the hysteria is with you and the Dalai Lama for believing – and also widely promoting the belief – that spirits can harm sincere Buddhists. Your view is totally contradictory to Buddha’s teaching and proves beyond doubt that you prefer superstition, scare-mongering, and mumbo-jumbo-gobbledygook over logical reasoning. I believe if this scenario was being played out in Europe in the Middle Ages then you would happily be burning people like me at the stake.

  296. I wonder if Tsongkhapa is sitting there in Tushita Pure Land scratching his head thinking –

    ‘All I ever wanted was for people to practice the teachings. Why are they wasting their time arguing over which tradition, which teacher is the best and who is or who is not an emanation of me. I suppose I am just going to have to emanate as someone new to tell them to stop. But I don’t suppose they will recognise me. They are already so convinced that they are right’.

  297. OK now to take the central point made by Ron Cook about the Dalai Lama abandoning his guru devotion and thereby creating the cause for hellish rebirth as well as for all those who follow the same erroneous view.

    Namdrol said:

    “Fourth, asserting that some lineage Guru was mistaken, does not imply abandonment of the lineage.”

    This point is central to your argument (and that of other Dalai Lama people) that the Dalai Lama did not break his guru devotion. However, I will now show clearly that you are wrong. You have to read this slowly and to contemplate deeply the meaning in order to understand the truth. Taking time is important.

    The Dalai Lama himself said that Trijang Rinpoche was “undoubtedly my most important guru” so we are not talking here, in Namdrol’s disrespectful phrase, about “some lineage guru”. This was the Dalai Lama’s root teacher – he himself has said so and has gone on public record about this so there is no need to debate here.

    Later the Dalai Lama said that those who practise Shugden “cannot be my friend”. Which means -if you check carefully – that his own root guru cannot be his friend. Now, you see Namdrol, if you have a root guru then that person is your “closest friend and helper” to quote from Geshe Kelsang’s long-life prayer. If you then go on to say that “he is not my friend”, this indicates that, among other unimaginable bad attitudes, you will not take their teachings as personal advice (one of the correct attitudes of listening to Dharma, taught by Shakyamuni). So?

    When the Dalai Lama first began speaking against Shugden practice on July 13th 1978 Trijang Rinpoche was then, and remained until his death in 1981, very disappointed with his student, the Dalai Lama. But the Dalai Lama, by now becoming puffed up and prideful, ignored the view of his root guru. As we know, since that time the Dalai Lama has done countless actions, mostly using his speech, to destroy Trijang Rinpoche’s lineage, and also has been followed by ignorant people like you who in reality know nothing of precious lamas like Trijang Rinpoche.

    The special lineage held by Trijang Rinpoche, from the “Kadam Emanation Scripture”, given directly to Je Tsongkhapa by Manjushri, is the heart-essence treasure of the pure Gelugpa lineage and it is the practice of this instruction that Dorje Shugden helps faithful disciples to protect in their hearts as a swift method to help suffering living beings by attaining full enlightenment. Unless you have received these teachings from a lineage guru of this tradition you will know nothing about them.

    Fooled by the Dalai Lama’s public teachings of Je Tsongkhapa that are common Gelug practices, such as Lamrim and so forth, people like yourself think that he has not forsaken Trijang Rinpoche’s lineage but only the “mistake of Shugden”. The story is far more subtle than this. By rejecting his spiritual guide in this way, the Dalai Lama has not only broken his guru devotion, but rejected the entire teaching of the Ganden Oral lineage practised since the time of Je Tsongkhapa.

    The Dalai Lama has broken his guru devotion, not only on one occasion, but also extensively and repeatedly. It follows that he cannot therefore be a qualified Dharma student and from this naturally follows that he cannot be a qualified Dharma teacher.

    Namdrol, you will deny everything that I have said of course.

    However, what I understand is the truth of the relationship between the Dalai Lama and Trijang Rinpoche. All that you can turn to is dry books and your own opinions whereas I am speaking from the experience of many realized masters handed down through our lineage. I have faith in these teachers as they have no political agenda and are purely interested out of compassion in helping living beings stop suffering.

    Have you noticed that, among all the many people reading these debates over many years only yourself and other Dalai Lama people are denying them? There are thousands of Trijang Rinpoche’s direct disciples who understand the truth of this situation. If I were lying to you do you not think they would speak up and refute what I am saying? In fact, as you will have also noticed, nowadays far more of them are speaking up, standing up and being counted in this debate and showing the real truth about the disgraceful 14th Dalai Lama. Not that they take any pleasure in this but they know it has to be done. What he has started is vile and wrong and it must be stopped.

    The fact is that you, Namdrol, only have knowledge and (possibly) experience of your own lineages – not this one. Therefore you are actually ignorant from the beginning of the truth of this situation and yet – amazingly – continue to behave in an extremely arrogant sectarian manner with your constant attacks on those about whom you know very little..

    Ron Cook’s analysis is correct. The Dalai Lama broke his reliance upon his root spiritual guide, probably around 35 years ago.

  298. Namdrol said:

    3) Abandoning sentient beings
    WSS assertion:
    “The Dalai Lama’s absence of compassion, the very essence of Buddhadharma, shows he is not a practicing Buddhist”

    “This assertion lacks any substance. The author cannot know this with any certainty. A single act of compassion is sufficient to negate this assertion, and HHDL acts with compassion daily.”

    OK. Here are some of the Dalai Lama’s daily actions of “compassion” for you to think about:

    Inflammatory Statements of Tenzin Gyatso, 14th Dalai Lama
    likely to Incite Tibetans and Westerners to be violent or
    discriminatory against Shugden Practitioners…..

    !st Quote:

    “….if the situation was such that there was only one learned Lama or genuine practitioner alive, a person whose death would cause the whole of Tibet to lose all hope of keeping its Buddhist way of life, then it is conceivable that in order to protect that one person it might be justified for one or ten enemies to be eliminated”
    Source: December 1997 issue of US magazine “Mother Jones”

    2nd Quote

    “….whoever fights against the Shugden spirit is defending religious freedom. I am quite prepared to compare this to the Nazis in Germany. Whoever fights against them is defending human rights because the freedom of Nazis is no freedom”
    Source: Interview with Klemens Ludwig for “Esotera” magazine pg. 82, May 1998

    3rd Quote

    “Judging from their way of thinking and way of acting, yes, you can say: fanatic.” Referring to Shugden practitioners.
    Source: BBC 2 TV “Correspondent” broadcast May 9th 1998

    4th Quote

    “There will be no change in my stand. I will never revoke the ban. You are right. It will be like the Cultural Revolution. If those who do not accept the ban do not listen to my words, the situation will grow worse for them. You sit and watch. It will grow only worse for them.”
    Source: Talk at Trijang Labrang, India, Jan 6th 1999

    5th Quote
    “Therefore, unless I remind you once again, there are those who pretend they have not heard it. It will be the last resort if we have to knock on your doors. It would be good if you can heed this without us having to resort to this last step.”
    Source: Talk in Dharamsala 1996

    6th Quote
    “What contribution did Dorje Shugden do for the Gelugpas in 60 years – nothing! Creates more misunderstanding between different sects – nothing positive. Truly not necessary – therefore better wipe out”.
    Source: UK Press Conference London 1997

    7th Quote
    The Dalai Lama accuses the Dorje Shugden Society and Shugden devotees of being “murderers and beaters”, and says “they receive money from China”.
    Source: Public speech at Sera-Mey monastery South India, January 12th 2007

    8th Quote
    “You abbots, do you understand? You office bearers, do you understand? The literature will be distributed later. You sponsors, did you understand? You Western monks, do you want to join in the referendum? To neglect it is of no use.”
    Source: Voice of America January 2008

    9th Quote
    “You might feel that by publishing letters, pamphlets etc. against this ban that the Dalai Lama will revoke this ban. This will never be the case. If you take a hard stand, I will tighten the ban still further”.
    Source: Nov 1st 1996…..?

    Are these the remarks of a compassionate person? Certainly not.

    This is not to mention the countless worldwide human rights abuses committed in his name (see above posts) about which the Dalai Lama has said nothing – and done nothing to stop.

    Therefore the Dalai Lama has – in these cases – abandoned sentient beings and broken the Bodhisattva vow.

  299. A friend shared this with me years ago – I was reminded of it when giving my opinion about Namdrol earlier…and hongkongphoey’s posting….I made one or two slight changes to bring it up to date…

    Sometimes dreaming is useful….:-)

    With apologies to Monty Python’s Flying Circus.

    *****************************************************

    Programme: “Watch with Great Mother” Afternoon TV for Dorje Shugden practitioners.

    Story-teller: Hello everybody. Today I’m going to tell you all a story that’s got a happy ending! Would you like that? (pause) You would? Very well.

    Are you all sitting comfortably? (pause) Then I’ll begin.

    Scene 1.

    (Background music: Adagio from Pastoral Symphony by Beethoven)

    Once upon a time in Buddhist society life was all sunshine, blue skies and grassy fields – very peaceful and everyone smiled at everyone else ….mostly all the time. It was very peaceful and beautiful. Then one day, without any warning, something really nasty happened….

    (Music from Holst’s Planets – Mars…)

    (Into the picture leaps a moustachioed monk in maroon robes – he is the Chief Inquisitor. Everyone looks startled!)

    Chief Inquisitor: “A- HA!” says the man, “NO-ONE expects the Buddhist Inquisition!!! HA HA HA HA HO!” his voice booms.

    Lots of other rough-looking characters enter stage left:“Yeeeeess!!” they hiss “NO-ONE expects the Buddhist Inquisition…” they repeat. (This is the mob.)

    The Chief Inquisitor looks around and spies some people (the victims) quietly and peacefully chanting in front of a statue of Buddha with Je Tsongkhapa and Dorje Shugden surrounded by beautiful offerings.

    “You people, listen to me. This IS the Inquisition and I AM the Chief Inquisitor. You MUST answer my questions or answer to my lackeys Ha Ha Ha Haaaaa!!!!!!!!!!”

    “OOOOOOhhhhhhhhhh!!” they all say, terrified by this unpleasant disturbance.

    Chief Inq: (pointing at them menacingly, moustache quivering) Do you deny that you are followers of Dorje Shugden?

    Victims: No, sir. We are certainly his followers. Look, here’s a statue of him…he’s the Wisdom Buddha, you know.

    Chief Inq: (Frowning) A-HA!! Just as I thought. This is the source of my sore throat. (turning to the mob) People, take THAT away (pointing at statue of Shugden) and throw it on the garbage – say a prayer first – especially you nuns! Then. Do you also deny that you follow Phabongkhapa?

    Victims: No, sir.

    Chief Inq: OF COURSE NOT!!! (Pointing) You are the dangerous sectarian cult responsible for every calamity that has befallen myself and Tibet since beginingless time are you not??!!

    Victims: (puzzled tone) We don’t think so, kind sir….

    Chief Inq: WHAAAT!!!? You deny this? You deny that you are seeking world domination? That you wish to destroy me? That you are the very essence of evil in this world? (Furious gnashing of teeth, foam falls from his mouth)

    Victims: Errumm…. Well, actually we respect your good self and all living beings and their religious traditions equally.

    Chief Inq: WRONG answer, boys and girls! (Whipping sound as he thrashes the air with his hands) Do you deny that you have verbally disparaged my very personage, actions and proclamations!!

    Victims: Well it is true that we don’t agree with you ….

    Chief Inq: ENOUGH OF THIS. They have confessed everything.. to the stake, get the tallow, where is the box of matches grr grr grrr.. he froths…..

    End of Scene 1.

    Scene 2.

    (Later, on top of the bonfire just before lighting-up time…music of Berio’s Atmospheres used in the movie: ” 2001: A Space Odyssey”)

    Chief Inq: OK OK This is your very last chance – do you want to sign this written confession before I light this?? Come on quickly now.. Confess, confess..con…

    Victims: We love you.

    Chief Inq: Lies, lies and damned lies – that’s all you ever say!! Where’s the torch…

    Suddenly light fills the scene and Wisdom Buddha Manjushri floats down hovering above everything and holding a blazing sword of wisdom up to the sky.

    Manjushri: Alright stop all this nonsense! This is all very, very silly. Haven’t you lot in the desire realm realized yet that I can emanate as anything? Eh? Demons, pontiffs, prostitutes, you name it – I can do it. I manifest as whatever is suitable for living beings….. OK?

    Now, who started all this? (Chief Inq. holds up hand sheepishly. Manjushri beams and extends his arm around the Chief’s shoulders…)

    Listen old chap, I know it’s not easy to believe, but everything really is like a dream – everything only exists from the side of your mind. So if you want an Inquisition you can dream one – but will it make you happy? Of course not. Now come on everybody say “Sorry” and start having a nice dream again. OK? Good. That’s that then. Bye for now.

    Manjushri flies away, everyone starts smiling at each other again. Hey presto…

    HAPPY ENDING !

    (Music fades in Schiller’s Ode to Joy from Beethoven’s 9th Symphony. Credits. Lights)

  300. and now for herstory . . .

    . . . forced into a corner of her own creation, she had to admit desperate times call for desperate measures. With ice water in her veins she steeled herself against the coming onslaught and turned to face her attackers, when suddenly she was overcome with a startling and perhaps utterly transformative realization . . . life is but a dream ? . . . but then where’s my boat . . . ?

  301. Hi Kadmapa,

    “It was, and still is, necessary to verbally follow the wishes of the Dalai lama even though it may not be their real intention. So I believe it is quite possible that on this occasion Trijang Rinpoche did not believe what he wrote but simply recorded it to please the Dalai Lama. Just like writing a long-life prayer indicating the Dalai Lama is enlightened does not make it true that he believed he was enlightened – it is just a tradition.”

    I find it hard to understand how Trijang Rinpoche could intentionally lie about it since he went to the extent of supporting that claim by quoting from the Fifth Dalai Lama’s writings.

    But if you suspects Trijang could yield to any kind of pressure and wrote things that “he did not believe” in, isn’t it also possible that he was lying about all the other magnificent accounts of Shugden simply because of his devotion towards him?

    It’s puzzling that you can single out that page from Trijang’s book and called it a lie while leaving the rest unexamined.

    Best

    Shaza

  302. “For example, the central point about the Dalai Lama abandoning Buddhist refuge is to do with the reliance he places on Nechung – the being universally acknowledged as a wordly spirit.”

    I answered this– the HHDL does not take refuge in Nechung. He uses Nechung as a servant. Why do your persist in making the same point that I have already rejected?

    Pabhongkha asserts that Nechung is an emanation of the five families. Since he asserts this, you must accept it.

    Although I think Pabhongkha’s conclusion below is mistaken, nevertheless, since you accept his authority on Shugden, you also must accept his authority on the Gyalpo Kun nga, of which Nechung is a member. In his reply to Palden Gyatso he states the following:

    “Though one should not go for refuge to these protectors that have taken mundane form, even though they are transcendent in essence; if one attains intense uncontrived conviction that, in terms of the definitive meaning, Yudronma is the mother of the Buddhas, Vajrayogini or is among the rank of the twenty four heroines and the twelve Vajrayoginis; Setrab is Amitabha, The Ku Nga are the five families, Shugden is Peaceful and Wrathful Manjushri, through focusing on this one and that one’s essentially transcendent aspect, it is suitable to go for refuge [to such protectors].”

    Although HHDL does not take refuge in Nechung, your criticism of him for relying on worldly spirit is baseless according to your own lineage. Or if you criticize him for relying on a worldly spirit, you yourself are at fault for the same thing. You cannot have it both ways.

    If you accept Pabhongkha’s assertion that Shugden is in essence the peaceful and wrathful Manjushri, you also have to accept that Nechung i.e. Pehar, is in essence an emanation of the Five Families.

    Therefore, this complaint of yours is rejected because it is completely invalid based on the teaching of your own lineage.

    N

  303. “The Dalai Lama himself said that Trijang Rinpoche was “undoubtedly my most important guru”…”

    Citation please. Context please.

    Though undoubtedly Trijiang was one of HHDL’s gurus, he was not the most important. Trijiang was the juniior tutor, not the senior tutor. Moreover, HHDL has stated publically and written in his bio that his most important Guru was the regent Taktra, and neither Ling or Trijiang Rinpoche. So you are simply wrong.

    Moreover, Pabhongkha could be accused of the same thing– early in his life he practiced a lot of Nyingma teachings, but later in his life he completely rejected Nyingmapa teachings and even said that all of his lineage gurus in Sakya, Kagyu, Nyingma and Kadampa (apart from the founders of those lineages) were going to hell for their wrong views.

    Further, in regards to the issue of Shugden, HHDL never received any Shugden empowerment or jenang– so apart from reciting some prayers, HHDL never had any real relationship with Dolgyal.

    HHDL makes it abudantly clear that he respects Trijiang, He also makes it abundantly clear that Trijiang respected his decision to reject Dolgyal practice.

    Further, HHDL called both Pabhongkha and Trijiang mistaken in their approach to Shugden practice– there is no doubt this is the case. However, is this the same as abandoning a teacher? No. Arya Vimuktesena criticized Vasubandhu’s interpretation of the Abhisamaya-alamkara.

    Further, as Tsongkhapa makes clear, if one feels that a teacher is asking one to do something contrary to Dharma, one can refuse. In this case, HHDL felt and feels that permitting Shugden practice in monasteries under his care is not correct. So he is not permitting it. He has never said to anyone they cannot practice Shugden– but if they are his students or in his monasteries, then they cannot practice Shugden. However, if someone no longer wishes to be HHDL’s student, and wishes to follow Shugden, they can take leave if his presence, and found their own monasteries over which HHDL will have no say. Your complaint about HHDL refusing the teaching Shugden practitioners is baseless– he is teaching them, it is just a hard lesson for them to learn.

    In answer to the charge that HHDL lacks compassion for Shugden practitioners– I can assure you it is not true. But the present circumstances call for tough love. You Shugden people are basically wayward children following someone who is taking you down an incorrect path. Since you are following an incorrect path, you need someone to harshly remind you that there is a correct path, one which you are not following. In the same way, children playing in the road may experience the anger of their parents. The parents may seem angry to the children and cause them to cry, but the parents’ actions are motivated by great love. Similarly, since the Dalai Lama is a great Bodhisattva, for you he manifests as an angry leader criticizing your practice of Shugden and its teachers, but in reality, he is a loving parent trying to set you on a proper road. I hope you listen to his message.

    N

  304. tuff luv and the pontooned pontiff gots me floatin ! ~ if eye be dreamin them me pontoons be leakin ? Hey ! the angry children are lookin for snacks and we out number you fogies so snap to it and dish up somethin we kin sink our teeth into. What you see is what you get is so 70’s ~ just ask Mikey Jackson = he’s been blowin bubbles and we don’t here mush from him n e mo.

    sew watts the poynt ? seams like ya gonna sea it they way ya does weather yer on the boat or just learnin how to float = aint no body gonna convince n e body hear. Sew wears dat dream body n e wayz

    ? if you kin poynt to it then ya aint got it rite ?

  305. Hi Namdrol,

    You say: “…so apart from reciting some prayers, HHDL never had any real relationship with Dolgyal”

    Dalai Lama this year at Leigh University:

    “…so actually, from 1951 till early 70’s i myself, also one of the worshipers of this spirit… previously, i also one of them…”

    Your statement that HH hardly never had a real relationship with DS and the DL’s own words: I worshipped him, seem contradictory. Am i incorrect?

    A Buddhist practitioner who doesn’t develop “any real relationship” with a deity he worships? What then, if your assertion is correct, kind of Buddhism is he practicing? How does a sincere practitioner fail to generate a relationship with a being that he worships for at least 20 years?

    Here is the link to the video where you can watch HH’s statement:

  306. “Your statement that HH hardly never had a real relationship with DS and the DL’s own words: I worshipped him, seem contradictory. Am i incorrect?”

    Yes, Harry, you are. One thing that Pabhongkha asserted (citation can be provided) was that the fulfillment prayer to Dolgyal required no transmission. It could be recited by anyone.

    HHDL was never given the initiation for this practice– in fact, he refused the initiation for this practice on the advice of Ling Rinpoche.

    So, yes, HHDL included a prayer to Dolgyal in his recitations — but he never created a close relationship with this deity, despite the claims of his critics.

    In order to create a real relationship with this kind of deity, you must receive the empowerment for deity.

    N

  307. Namdrol,

    Look i haven’t read much on the subject, but the DL says it crystal clear in the video: “i used to worship Shugden”. You can try to play it down by saying he just recited prayers, etc, but the spade remains the spade. Are you saying that Boddhisatvas just repeat words from sadhanas without truly meaning them? Since he says he didn’t start doubting S until the late 60’s, and since according to you he is a Boddhisatva, in your view he most likely will have made fervorous prayers to S out of his powerful compassion. Buddhas listen to prayers and meet us if we try to connect with them, so if S is a Buddha they will have established a connection. I suppose if he is a spirit he will have enjoyed the attention and connected with him too, i don’t know.

    The word “worship” implies devotion, not just mere recitations.

    You provide some interesting points, but not really enough to prove that he effectively did not establish a relationship.

    I don’t think that the only way to develop a relationship with a Deity is through receiving empowerment. According to Wikipedia empowerment is a development that arose in Tibetan Buddhism. I would say that empowerment greatly increases connection with the Deity and gives power to attain realizations of Deity. But like i said, one may develop a relationship with a Deity without empowerment.

    I don’t think the point here is how close the relationship was. My point is that if he was sincere in his prayers/recitations/torma offerings he will have naturally created a relationship.

    Empowerments and no faith won’t produce much of a relationship with Deities. Unlike no empowerment and much faith.

    I haven’t composed this very well, and perhaps it isn’t that articulate, but i do think that my doubts are pretty reasonable. You want me to believe that HH is a “great Boddhisatva”, but you also want me to believe that this great Boddhisatva didn’t establish much of a connection with a deity he claims to have “worshiped” for 20 years. I repeat: Boddhisatvas don’t merely recite prayers like a scratched disc.

    Can’t great Boddhisatvas tell a Buddha from a ghost anyway? I’m assuming that by great Boddhisatva you mean the one’s who have direct realizations of emptiness and are on the higher grounds nearing Buddhahood.

  308. Namdrol,

    A prayer to DS composed by HH:

    “A Propitiation of Mighty Gyalchen Dorje Shugden,
    Protector of Conqueror Manjusri Tsongkhapa’s Teachings”

    “HUM
    Glory of the wisdom, compassion and power of infinite Buddhas
    Miraculously powerful protector of Manjusri Tsongkhapa’s Teachings
    Arisen as a lord of all wrathful worldly hosts
    Come from the abodes of Tushita, Kechara, and so forth!

    Prostrating with devotion of body, speech, and mind
    I confess all mistakes and faults in which
    Out of delusion, I have contradicted your holy mind:
    Accept with forbearance and show your smiling face!

    Arising from the sport of non-dual bliss and void
    Are offerings and torma of flesh and blood heaped like a mountain
    First portions of milk, yogurt, beer and tea swirling like the ocean

    Auspicious signs and substances and various animals
    Peaceful and wrathful ornaments, enemy-destroying weapons and armor
    Amassed samaya substances, outer, inner, and secret, without exception!

    Having fulfilled your heart commitment and purified degeneration
    By making these actually arranged and visualized offerings
    Increase Lozang the Victorious One’s Teachings
    And the life span and activities of the Teachings’ upholders!
    Further the happiness of beings in the Gaden [Podrang] dominion!

    Especially pacify all harm to us, the yogis and entourages
    That arises because of previous karma and immediate conditions
    And spontaneously accomplish, just as we wish
    All good things, both spiritual and temporal!

    Grind to dust without remainder
    Enemy hordes that think and act perversely
    Towards the teachings and lay and ordained people
    With potent, accurate, powerful great vajra fire!

    Especially, cause the saffron-clad community of Dungkar Monastery
    Brightly beautiful in bonds of pure morality
    To soar the path of immortal liberation
    On unified wings of Sutra and Tantra!

    In brief, we enthrone you, O Deity, as the supreme
    Collected nature of all Gurus and Protective Deities!
    From densely gathered clouds of the four activities
    Pour down a cool rain of the two siddhis!”

  309. As we can see, he once recognized DS as:

    “Protector of Conqueror Manjusri Tsongkhapa’s Teachings”

    “Glory of the wisdom, compassion and power of infinite Buddhas”

    Etc…

    Does the composition of such a prayer not indicate more than a small connection based on a couple of torma offerings? If he believed his own words and held DS in such high esteem surely he made regular and strong prayers to him, right? After all, he is a lineage holder of Tsongkhapa.

    Strong and regular prayers made by a high end Boddhisatva? I don’t think you really need empowerments at this level, in order to establish a relationship with a deity.

    Alright, sorry for banging on, that’s me for today

  310. It’s more like 4 or 5 yous, BBG. But that’s ok, we appreciate all of you individually in your respective ways.

    Thnx for bringing some humour and lightnessy stuff to the fire.

  311. Namdrol

    It would be nice to believe that the Dalai Lama’s position is a kind of “tough love”. The thing that makes that difficult to swallow is that the Dalai Lama has stated (I don’t have the reference – will find it if you insist, but for now take it on faith, if you can) that his stance on Shugden does not apply to Westerners, only to people connected to Tibet. He qualified this by inviting Westerners to talk to him in person about it if they wished. I believe this was said in the late 1990s.

    So “tough love” just doesn’t ring true. This is political. If it’s “tough love”, he aint too concerned about all living beings, just the ones who share his national and cultural heritage.

    Though you may not quite have the same perspective I do on the witch naming angle, it’s also easy to see socio-psychological reasons for these conflicts. This is one study that is simply begging to be written, but I guess suitably qualified academics interested in this conflcit have simply not availed themselves of the opportunity yet. It’s a big project. It will happen, though, sooner or later. I have no doubt.

    As I say, ‘tough love’ is a tempting explanation, as it would skirt some of the more unpleasant implications. We could all pretend this isn’t really happening. We could all delude ourselves by taking that little blue pill labelled “pure view”. But that’s just a cop-out. Maybe that’s something you need to do if he’s one of your spiritual guides, but he isn’t really one of mine.

    In the words of Leonard Cohen:

    I know I said I’d meet you, meet you at the store,
    But I can’t buy it, baby, I can’t buy it anymore.

  312. Kadampa,

    Your story could so easily finish with Manjushri floating down and saying……

    “Don’t you know that the Chief Inquisitor is one of my emanations.

    “Listen victims, I know it’s not easy to believe, but everything really is like a dream – everything only exists from the side of your mind. So if you want to follow a worldly spirit you can dream one – but will it make you happy? Of course not. Now come on everybody forget about it and put you energy into following the five fold path. Just remember – take refuge in the teachings – they will give you all the protection you need. See you in the pure land – they even have YouTube there”.

    What this proves is that it is part of condition of desire realm beings to hijack a story or a teaching and use it to justify their POV. Attachment and pride are the problem. Not the Dalai Lama or the WSS or Shugden (whoever they may be).

  313. Hi Kadampa

    This is a response to your #317 – many posts ago on this fast-moving thread!

    In #306 I wrote

    “Sakya say Virupa took no rebirths. 750 or more years later certain Gelugpas claim he did. Now surely, you would agree, both can’t be right. So my only point is that if Shugdenpas are going to come along 750 years after the event and claim Sakyas are entirely wrong, it would be instructive to hear why. Surely that’s reasonable?”

    You replied in #317

    “Shugdenpas are not claiming that Sakya is wrong – please don’t misunderstand my intentions. I want there to be harmony between all traditions. What Shugden people believe about the reincarnations is beneficial for them – it helps increase their faith; what Sakya believe is also beneficial and helps increase their faith. It isn’t necessary for either group to win a debate about who’s lineage gurus are right and who’s not in this respect. The point is both schools are satisfied with their teachers and enjoy Dharma…

    Problems arise when faith is destroyed. We each need to believe what is conducive to peace and virtue. Why can’t we both be right? If it is beneficial and causes no harm or problem for others.”

    You seem to be implying that it can be true that (a) Virupa DID take further rebirths and that (b) Virupa did NOT take further rebirths. I can’t see how even the most enlightened of holy beings can make both of these true.

    I would have thought at a belief is beneficial only if it a correct belief (see GKG’s “Understanding the Mind”). If Shugdenpas believe that Virupa was reborn as Sakya Pandita then logic dicates that the must necessarily hold that the Sakya belief that Virupa took no further rebirths is an absolutely incorrect belief. And how can an incorrect belief benefit Sakya? You may claim that it’s correct FOR THEM but I don’t think this will do. If my belief that my sister is 27 is correct, then one cannot say that her boyfriend’s belief that she’s 22 is correct for him. It is – disappointingly for him – simlpy wrong!

    You say you want there to be harmony between traditions. Me too! But harmony does not imply a lack of debate and debate does not necessarily lead to disharmony. So I ask: When Shugdenpas come along 750 years after the event, on what basis do they claim that the Sakyas have got in wrong for so long about Virupa? The fact that I ask this question doesn’t mean I’m looking to create disharmony, simply to clarify what’s going on!

    Best

    SC

  314. Hi Harry

    In #394 you seem to be raising the question of how a supposed Boddhisattva can make a mistake. For example how can the DL worship a ghost for 20 years?

    However, as Namdrol pointed out in #377, the same argument can levelled against Phabonkgha. How could this emanation of Heruku practice Nyingma teaching early in his life when, later in his life, he said that they lead to hell?

    As Namdrol has shown, Phabongkha took the view that all Buddhist schools other than Gelug engaged in practices which would lead practitioners to hell. See for example #278

    “Apart from the doctrine of Manjughosha Tsongkhapa alone, these days the views of all Sakyas, Kagyus, Nyingmas and so on are erroneous. They are not even Svatantra or Cittamatra, let alone the view of Prasanga Madhyamaka– meditating only the nihilist view like tirthikas and Hashang. If one upholds the nihilist view, the result is nothing other than going to Avichi hell.”

    If Phabonkgha was a Boddhisattva, and if Bodhisattvas don’t make mistakes then presumably Phabongkha’s statement is correct. But GKG has, to the contrary, stated

    “Of course we believe that every Nyingmapa and Kagyupa have their complete path. Not only Gelugpa. I believe that Nyingmapas have a complete path. Of course, Kagyupas are very special. We very much appreciate the example of Marpa and Milarepa [in the Kagyu lineage]. Milarepa showed the best example of guru devotion. Of course the Kagyupas as well as the Nyingmapas and the Sakyapas, have a complete path to enlightenment.”

    If Phabongkha and GKG are both Boddhisattvas and Boddhisattvas don’t make mistakes then both their statements should be true. But it doesn’t appear that both can be so.

    GKG has stated

    “Not only Gelugpa Lamas believe this, some Sakya Lamas also believe that Dorje Shugden is a holy being. In the book by Dhongtog Tulku Tenpai Gyaltsen he says that Dorje Shugden cannot be a worldly spirit because he is a Bodhisattva.”

    But surely this cannot be correct. Along with Chatral Rinpoche and Lobsang Gyato, Dhongtog Tulku is well-known for his writings arguing that Dorje Shugden is a worldly spirit.

    So it looks like the conclusion is that either DL, Phabongkha and GKG are not Bodhisattvas or they are but Bodhisattvas (seemingly) make mistakes. It’s all rather confusing…!

    SC

  315. How many times must a man look up
    Before he can see the sky?
    Yes, ‘n’ how many ears must one man have
    Before he can hear people cry?
    Yes, ‘n’ how many deaths will it take till he knows
    That too many people have died?
    The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind,
    The answer is blowin’ in the wind.

    eye think the udder answer iz az longazit takes ~ sew if yer a boodha ya got all the time they is – besides yer just manifesting in dependence on the karma of other’s to perceive you rite?

  316. Hi Harry:

    The word HHDL means by worship is gsol ‘debs, to offer a supplication. One possible translation of this word into English is “worship”– however, a High Lama like HHDL will often have to recite many texts daily, it does not mean he enters into an ecstatic fervor for every one of them. In fact, the recitation of protector prayers is a fairly rote sort of thing, you do it, you do it as quickly as possible, burning right through them at top speed without thinking about them very much apart from visualizing the offerings and so on.

    So like most of the these stupid arguments, some of you take it is a huge thing when HHDL says “I worshipped Shugden” but in fact it just means he also recited the text. I am sure that, in the midst of all of other things he had to deal with, he had Lamas like Trijiang trying to sell him on how great Shugden was– but he obviously did not buy it, from a really early time.

    In the same way, if the Dalai Lama says “I rely on Nechung…” some of you folks go off the deep end and assert that this means that HHDL is a Bonpo Non-Buddhist who takes refuge in a worldly spirit. But in this case, “rely” means no more than “relying on a car…”, “relying on a chair…” or “in the case of an old man “relying on a cane…”.

    These points that NKT/WSS raises on these issues are complete tempests in teacups, you all make these huge stinks out of your own total misunderstandings of basic Tibetan culture and Tibetan Buddhism which few of your are equipped to understand since you know almost nothing about the culture, history and religion that forms the foundation for your dearly beloved cause. In short, you all are basically puppets with very little idea of what you are doing.

    Further, HHDL absolutely rejects the statement made by Pabhongkha that it is proper to take refuge in a protector like Shugden,or Nechung, etc., that takes on a worldly appearance if one has conviction in their ultimate nature as a Buddha.

    You see, HHDL has fundamental and valid disagreements with Pabhongkha and Trijiang. But you all– far from freedom of thought and religious freedom, the freedom to make up one’s own mind– you all insist that HHDL needs to just leave his mind at the temple door and blindly accept what Pabhongkha and Trijiang assert. You all insist this again and again– HHDL is wrong because HHDL decided that the doctrinal approach to Shugden promulgated by Pabhongkha was unsound from a Dharma point of view. Why? Because you all believe that when you take some empowerment from some Lama this means that you must accept whatever that Lama says as the Gospel even if it contradicts other proper Dharma. Well, this position of yours in unsupportable. All the texts on Guru devotion point out that if your Guru teaches you things or asks you to do things that do not jibe with proper Dharma, you do not have to follow those instructions.

    So the idea that you people stand for religious freedom is a joke– you don’t exercise religious freedom because you believe in blind obedience to Guru Figures– why do you think people call NKT a cult?

    So, if you people want to be brainwashed by your protector cult, that is your business, but don’t expect someone who thinks things through clearly, and who is an amazing scholar i.e. HHDL, to just accept the simple minded cult brainwashing you people are content with.

    N

  317. I am burning thru this as fast as I kin (except for the offerings of course) an it still looks like eye m gittin no wears fast.

    eye bin brain washed by you people ! sew now eye m wona y’all ? so does that mean eye m you people? = startin to sound like the walrus to me –

    sew if eye sey I LOVE YOU PEOPLE then eye m really sayin that eye luv me self and that’s not self cherishing?

    you people ~ this whirld wood be so mush nicer without you people ~ awe horse potatoes = that means me two eh?

    so hears won four ya . . . . . . . . .

    A bird entering a freezing rain storm on a cold winter’s morning falls to earth in a frozen heap. Shortly after a cow wanders by and plops a pie right on top of him. Thawing out now and feeling warm and happy the bird begins to sing. Hearing the singing a cat comes by and eats the bird.

    Moral of the story: If yer warm and happy in a pile of shit itz better to keep your mouth shut.

  318. Namdrol,

    “The word HHDL means by worship is gsol ‘debs, to offer a supplication. One possible translation of this word into English is “worship”– however, a High Lama like HHDL will often have to recite many texts daily, it does not mean he enters into an ecstatic fervor for every one of them. In fact, the recitation of protector prayers is a fairly rote sort of thing, you do it, you do it as quickly as possible, burning right through them at top speed without thinking about them very much apart from visualizing the offerings and so on.”

    The prayer i pasted yesterday sounds pretty fervorous to me. Plus he didn’t simply recite this prayer he composed it.

    Stupid arguments: I am not making a huge thing out of HH’s words “i worshiped Shugden”. Although it’s pretty obvious to me that you are merely playing it down. Offering supplications and worship are in the same boat, i don’t disagree. The spade is still a spade. I guess in general i disagree with a practice that consists in simply reciting very quickly and not concentrating on the meaning. Well, i don’t disagree, i simply have my doubts as to it’s effectiveness. I doubt high Boddhisatvas who have powerful and deep concentration recite prayers in a rote way without really focusing on their meaning. I could be very wrong.

    I was simply challenging your statement that HH never developed much of a relationship with DS. I don’t think you and me will ever really know much about their relationship, however there are things like the prayer he composed that indicate strong probabilities of such relationship. Or are prayers also composed in a rote way without contemplating their meaning in Tibet? Tibetan culture is surely different to ours, but you paint it like it’s in another universe where even the law of physics doesn’t apply. I wonder if this is simply another method to try and put people like me down.

    “he had Lamas like Trijiang trying to sell him on how great Shugden was– but he obviously did not buy it, from a really early time.”

    How early on? Proof if possible.

    Nechung: I don’t have much of a problem with this. I understand he relies on N for political advice. If this is all, there is no complaint. He doesn’t go for refuge = no probs. I do have my doubts about certain things, for e.g., his questioning of N when it came to decide about DS. I sense mixing of politics and religion in this activity.

    NKT/WSS views on Tibetan culture, etc: You’re statements are part true, part incorrect i think. It’s true that since the NKT is nearly 100% composed of non-Tibetan people we are disadvantaged when it comes to resolving this conflict. However our head is a Tibetan with a broad understanding of Tibetan culture, language, and religion, and has many Tibetan contacts too. Also, although knowledge of culture, etc, are important when trying to understand a situation, common sense, a good intention, etc, are far more effective tools. About WSS: Well since WSS has plenty of Tibetan contacts in and out of Tibet, you can see that they are perhaps not as ignorant as you would like to think. And once again, Tibet is not on Mars, the ways of human beings are essentially the same. Violation of human rights, for e.g., are obvious wherever they occur. Ya don’t need to be part of a country to see infliction and reception of suffering.

    “In short, you all are basically puppets with very little idea of what you are doing.”

    It is this kind of sweeping statement which leaves much to be desired in your posts. Namdrol, you are speaking to an NKT Shugden practitioner who is not involved with WSS. The reason i am here, debating, is because i’m trying to understand both sides of the issue, because i want the best for both parties involved. This statement is ordinary and vulgar. The word “sectarian” is ringing many bells in my head. It is this type of mentality that binds this issue further into confusion. The schism won’t heal if both parties hang on to such primitive, old fashioned thoughts.

    Same goes for the following:

    “So the idea that you people stand for religious freedom is a joke– you don’t exercise religious freedom because you believe in blind obedience to Guru Figures– why do you think people call NKT a cult?

    So, if you people want to be brainwashed by your protector cult, that is your business, but don’t expect someone who thinks things through clearly, and who is an amazing scholar i.e. HHDL, to just accept the simple minded cult brainwashing you people are content with.”

    Plus all the other similar minded statements that you regularly make. You have much knowledge of Buddha’s teachings, Namdrol. Use it.

    Your 5th and 6th paragraphs: I don’t know much about these things so i can’t really comment. Apart from the fact that in NKT to blindly follow your teachers words is not encouraged. This seems to me to be a problem that most western Buddhists fall for, and there has been plenty of this nonsense in NKT. However the problem has been recognized and is being addressed. I’ve seen countless DL supporters who have the same problem.

    KG said in a recent festival, that one must always question and never take one’s teachers words for granted. And has said this sort of thing countless times.

    Many people who have a gripe with NKT are holding on to this old axe like a crab who can’t let go of a twig. Prior to being Buddhists we are human beings who want to be happy, so we make an effort to let go of erroneous attitudes that harm us. Contrary to the view that we are brainwashed drones fulfilling the wishes of a compulsive madman.

    The NKT is not a cult. It is an organization of human beings sincerely trying to follow Buddha’s teachings. As individuals and as a group we have made many mistakes and continue to do so, but we are honestly trying to improve. As a free thinking individual, who has a varied life outside (as well as inside) of NKT, i can assure you that this tradition is not a cult. This is something which i could debate extensively if you wish, as unlike Tibetan culture, i do know quite a bit about NKT. There is very little basis upon which one can label present day NKT as a cult, and that which there is, is quite easily refuted. Individuals behaving in a cultish way are not proof of a cult. I base my understanding on KG’s teachings which don’t have a cultish hair on them, and on everyday life at my local centre, where individuals are generally free thinking. Our centre is in a city and we get on perfectly well with our neighbors and with people we meet at our jobs or colleges (as in my case).

    I could go on indefinitely with reasons that indicate the falsity of this idea.

    Take care.

  319. “KG said in a recent festival, that one must always question and never take one’s teachers words for granted. And has said this sort of thing countless times.”

    Then he and you should have no problem with and find no fault with HHDL”s disagreement with Pabhongkha and Trijiang on basic doctrinal grounds and his ensuing decision to ban Shugden practice in monasteries under HHDL’s authority.

    N

  320. Namdrol

    Your logic seems to be defective.

    Anyone that can tell me that I’m getting harmed at the NKT even though I don’t recite Shugden prayers because Shugden’s influence is pervasive, then still say that the Dalai Lama’s okay because he was just ripping through all his Shugden prayers as a formaity and not really thinking about them – well, the blatant self-serving double standard here speaks for itself.

    It’s all really quite laughable.

  321. Namdrol,

    I’m quite ok with the disagreement. I don’t know about KG, you would have to ask him.

    What i don’t agree with is the ban. I don’t agree with ostracizing people who don’t wish to give up Shugden.

  322. Also:

    One thing is to disagree with a practice passed down to you from one of your Gurus, and to abandon the practice oneself. Another thing is to label the practice non-Buddhist and the deity a spirit, to forcefully remove it, to ostracize anyone who won’t give it up, and to prevent disciples and others from recieving the Dharma from you if you don’t conform.

    Freedom of thought? Freedom of speech? Freedom of religion?

    Not if you practice Shugden, mate.

  323. “Another thing is to label the practice non-Buddhist and the deity a spirit, to forcefully remove it, to ostracize anyone who won’t give it up, and to prevent disciples and others from recieving the Dharma from you if you don’t conform.”

    Regarding protectors in mundane form as objects of refuge is non-Buddhist– that’s why we never take refuge in the four Kings, Vaishravana and so on even though these Dharma protectors clearly taught in sutra as well as tantra. Even Indian gods such as Indra are Dharma protectors, for example, these five deities are all mentioned in the Perfection of Wisdom in 8,000 Lines, among others. But we never take them as refuges because they are worldly gods.

    It may have been the opinion of some Lama somewhere that so and so was really an emanation of a Buddha– even Shiva is considered an emanation of Avalokiteshvara: nevertheless, we never take refuge in Shiva. But by Pabhongkha’s logic, it should be ok. Anyone with even a modicum of reason left in their heads can quickly see the abyss of error to which Pabhongkha’s reasoning swiftly leads i.e.the same reasoning he uses to justify accepting Shugden as a proper refuge, anyone can use to justify taking refuge in Mahadeva. So you folks just plunge over the cliff of this faulty reasoning like lemmings– just following the lemming in front of you without looking any further.

    HHDL is perfectly correct to exclude people who do not listen to his advice from his teachings, he is perfectly correct to expel those who do not listen to his advice from his monasteries, and he is perfectly correct to scold those who refuse to abandon Dolgyal practice severely.

  324. Harry:

    You can lie to yourself, if you want– but don’t lie to me.

    “Freedom of thought? Freedom of speech? Freedom of religion?

    Not if you practice Shugden, mate.”

    Shugden people are a noisy bunch, all out of proportion to their actual numbers. The idea that your freedom is being impinged is complete, dare I say it, bollocks.

    It is true a majority of Tibetans follow HHDL’s advice, even in Tibet. Good thing too.

    N

  325. “Anyone that can tell me that I’m getting harmed at the NKT even though I don’t recite Shugden prayers because Shugden’s influence is pervasive, then still say that the Dalai Lama’s okay because he was just ripping through all his Shugden prayers as a formaity and not really thinking about them – well, the blatant self-serving double standard here speaks for itself.”

    It is well known by Lamas both within and without Gelugpa that Shugden swiftly reward his devotees. This is the reason why worldly spirits are used as protectors, actually. It is equally well known that Shugden is capricious and easily angered, like all King spirits, such as Setrab and Pehar.

    Just because you are blind deaf and dumb to the fact does not mean you are not going to be hit by that truck bearing down on you.

    N

  326. I don’t believe Namdrol really believes he is dealing with brainwashed cult members here.

    No, Namdrol is using the term ‘cult’ because like the term ‘witch’, it doesn’t have a counter-argument. It’s a value judgement. It’s not something that he has to qualify. It’s something he can bring up knowing that it will work the room, reinforcing existing prejudices and rubbing salt into old wounds. It’s something that will deflect attention away from the real issues.

  327. Hi SC,

    “In #394 you seem to be raising the question of how a supposed Boddhisattva can make a mistake.”

    Thanks for pointing this out. Perhaps my statement was unnecessary. Of course, i’m sure Boddhisatvas can make mistakes. Even emanations may appear to make mistakes to our grasping minds. Perhaps sometimes simply due to our impure karma, and perhaps sometimes on purpose so as to teach us something.

    My general point was more like: How can a high Boddhisatva engage with a deity for 20 years and develop no relationship? I give reasons as to why relationship was probable in the case of being such a Boddhisatva: High Boddhisatvas have powerful concentration and great compassion, therefore it is unlikely that they merely recite prayers in rote fashion without meaning them, and without engaging with the Deity they are praying to. Then there is the prayer he composed, which speaks for itself.

    I agree with you that it is quite confusing when all these Lamas appear to contradict each other. Often appearing to contradict themselves!

    I can’t seem to come up with any useful thoughts on it at this moment. Hmm… perhaps what is true at one time and under certain circumstances and for a certain person or group of people doesn’t necessarily have to be true for another time, circumstance and people.

    It’s a very interesting topic and i would really like to dig into it more. Perhaps other readers could post some ideas?

    Regards

  328. “It is equally well known that Shugden is capricious and easily angered, like all King spirits, such as Setrab and Pehar.”

    Trust me, over the last two years I’ve given him plenty of reason to be pissed off with me. But he’s been quite patient. If he was going to make an example out of anybody at my Centre, it would have been me.

  329. Namdrol,

    “Regarding protectors in mundane form as objects of refuge is non-Buddhist”

    Perhaps in your tradition.

    According to our lineage, perhaps unlike yours, DS is in the continuum of Manjushri and therefore not a worldly god. It doesn’t really matter in what way he manifests if at the end of the day he is an enlightened being.

    “HHDL is perfectly correct to exclude people who do not listen to his advice from his teachings”

    Ok but you can’t deny that this activity is sectarian in the extreme. If KG behaved in the same way we would have the whole internet in uproar. KG doesn’t exclude anyone from his teachings for disagreeing with him or for practicing something he doesn’t consider Buddhist. He doesn’t exclude anyone full stop.

    “You can lie to yourself, if you want– but don’t lie to me.”

    Namdrol, i think it is quite obvious from my posts that i express my opinion. I believed in honesty way before i knew anything about karma, and i take pride in keeping the Pratimoksha vow of abandoning lying. I have many faults but dishonesty is not very strong in my character. Perhaps my views are incorrect but i have no intention of deceiving you for my own gain.

    There is plenty of material on the internet that suggests that freedom is being stamped on by HH and the TGIE. And the WSS is not the only source of it. If it is all a mirage created by Shugden practitioners then we need people to clarify these things. You’re not clarifying anything with your abusive speech.

    You should take the good example of the monk Khedrup who is incredibly fair, well spoken and seems very unbiased and unattached to his views. He tries to understand both sides of the conflict. He knows how to listen to people who hold differing views. And because of this people are willing to listen to him (including me). It’s very hard to listen to someone who repeatedly insults you and your cause. With your extensive knowledge of Buddhism you might be more aware of this simple basic fact. Since it seems to go straight past you is why i (and it seems others on this blog) have strong doubts about your activity.

  330. Namdrol,

    “The problem with Dolgyal practice is that it presents the spirit Dolgyal (Shugden) as a Dharma protector and what’s more tends to promote the spirit as more important than the Buddha himself. If this trend goes unchecked, and innocent people become seduced by cult-like practices of this kind.” – The Dalai Lama’s Advice Concerning Dolgyal (Shugden), June 2008

    You say that it is nonsense that freedom is being violated. But if the DL bans DS and then gives such unfounded reasons, one has to raise an eyebrow. It is quite unsurprising that we make a fuss, if HH is making claims like “Shugden practitioners consider DS to be more important than Buddha”.

    Some of my ramblings about the invalidity of this claim in relation to the NKT can be found in post 349.

  331. “perhaps what is true at one time and under certain circumstances and for a certain person or group of people doesn’t necessarily have to be true for another time, circumstance and people.”

    absolutely ~ how could it be udder wise?

    trying to find the one-size-fits-all path is a problem whatever tradition we’re into = if ya don’t pray like me then yur gonna fry. Don’t sound wise or compassionate to me.

    once upon a time (remember?) the test for witches ? throw em in the river and if they don’t float then they aint a witch (oops)

    seems like we’re in the middle of a witch hunt to me.

  332. then thairs the x ample of Buddha living the life of a forest yogi with no clothes food etc and nearly dying. He concluded that such austerities were not a valid path but can we say those seven years were a ‘mistake’?

  333. yes, if you feel tempted to squeeze my wise udder it means you are one of them. and then we will tie you up and tickle your feet with peanut-flavoured hankies.

  334. This whole thing is nothing more and nothing less than witch hysteria, which exists in cultures all over the world. It has been exascerbated here by politics and by social strains in Tibetan society. I will illustrate this over the coming weeks. I will be writing extensively on this soon.

    It’s time this nonsense was exposed for what it is – absolute social delirium disguised as Buddhism.

  335. Of course, it’s easy to joke about. But where I come from, people are still being burned to death for being witches. Every february, during lightning season.Broadly, witches are ‘bad’ people doing ‘harmful practices’, sometimes worshipping ‘harmful spirits’. So it’s still very real. In Africa, in Papua New Guinea, in Austalasia, in Asia, and even in quite remote rural areas of Europe such as Wales.

    And of course in India and Tibet.

  336. An interesting turn of phrase.

    Here in Australia at the demonstrations, a reporter asked an onlooker who the demonstators were.

    She was Tibetan. She said she didn’t know but believed they practiced witchcraft (her words not mine – google it).

  337. Hi WJ,
    “Well, okay.That was a little unbecoming of him.”
    If GKG didn’t even bother to hide his contempt for other traditions in his teachings, I have reason to question his sudden “respect” for Nyingma and Kagyu is nothing more than window dressing.
    “Trust me, over the last two years I’ve given him plenty of reason to be pissed off with me. But he’s been quite patient. If he was going to make an example out of anybody at my Centre, it would have been me.”
    Shugden should be patient…you are writing a thesis for him..

    “So “tough love” just doesn’t ring true. This is political. If it’s “tough love”, he aint too concerned about all living beings, just the ones who share his national and cultural heritage.”

    And you are now complaining DL is not tough enough on westerners?

    Quite the contrary, DL said if he had been firmer in the 70’s, none of this GKG, Gonsar and Gangchen brouhaha will be able to take root.( C.f. Speech in Dharamsala, 1997). He did have you in mind.

    On the ”love” part, I think no one says it better than Khedrup

    see post #18

    http://westernshugdensociety.wordpress.com/2008/09/11/bodhisattva-centre-open-day-review-and-reply/

    Best

    Shaza

  338. Hi Namdrol

    “HHDL was never given the initiation for this practice– in fact, he refused the initiation for this practice on the advice of Ling Rinpoche. ”

    I thought Ling Rinpoche’s advice was against HHDL to receive Gyu Sangwa Nyingpo in the late 60’s because Ling was afraid that Shugden might harm DL.

    And it seems to me that DL came to his own conclusion for not taking the Shugden initiation after investigating all the signs etc.

    It would be good to establish a time sequence of the events.

    Best

    Shaza

  339. “Shugden should be patient…you are writing a thesis for him.”

    Very good. Ha ha ha. But I’m not writing a thesis for Shugden. I’m writing for the ignorant, who are everywhere.

    “I have reason to question his sudden “respect” for Nyingma and Kagyu is nothing more than window dressing.”

    You’re free to question, but why bother asking the questions when you have the answers? Why ask a man if he’s innocent when you believe he’s guilty?

    “if she’s more informed, she will add “….and believed it is Dharma”

    But then of course the point is that she wasn’t informed, which is the worrying thing.

  340. In #282 I posted a reply from Lucy James to a posting I made on the New Statesman blog about Dorje Shugden

    http://www.newstatesman.com/blogs/the-faith-column/2008/08/dalai-lama-deity-banned

    I have just posted a lenghty reply to Lucy. It deals with GKG’s views on the “Yellow Book” and on the question of whether Sakyas hold Shugden to be enlightened. I’ve copied it below as it may serve as a useful resource for some.

    SC
    ____________________________
    REPLY TO LUCY JAMES

    Hi Lucy

    Absolutely agree that it’s important to explore these issues deeply and many thanks for taking the time to give such a full response. Much appreciated. Sorry it’s taken a while to reply.

    In the spirit of exploring these deeply, I set out a detailed response to your comments on the Yellow book and on the view of Shugden held by Sakyas. I’d have liked to respond to all your comments post but insufficient time, I’m afraid. Hopefully, will do so in the near future.

    YELLOW BOOK

    I understand that Geshe Kelsang views the contents of the Yellow Book as “different superstitions according to ordinary people’s appearance of Dorje Shugden” [see http://www.dharmaprotector.org/othertraditions.html%5D and that this is your view too.

    However, the point I’m keen to make it this. The descriptions of Dorje Shugden’s actions in the Yellow Book are pretty much the same as those set out in the writings of both Trijang and Phabongkha. So it seems to me that, given you are claiming that Zemey is describing folk tales about Dorje Shugden, logically, you are entirely committed to making the same claim about Trijang and Phabongka.

    The problem as I see it with making this claim about all three writers’ texts is that there is nothing in them where it explicitly states or even implies that what is being described are folk tales rather than actual events.

    And it’s also worth pointing out that not all Shugden supporters subscribe to the “folk tales” reading of the Yellow Book.. For example, on the “Dorje Shugden” website, a site run by assorted Shugden practitioners, it states

    “The much talked about ‘yellow book’ contains stories of what happened to people who ‘displeased’ Dorje Shugden, which means to say, they were practitioners of Je Tsongkhapa’s tradition and of Dorje Shugden as Dharma protector who did not heed his repeated advice and warnings not to mix and pollute the teachings. Sickness, insanity and death ensued. The book was compiled by Tzeme Rinpoche, an eminent lineage holder, and we can therefore assume that these accounts are more than mere pedagogy, but actually happened the way they are told.”

    [See http://www.dorjeshugden.com/sectarianism.htm%5D

    Continued…

  341. SAKYA VIEWS ON DORJE SHUGDEN

    You state that

    “Gelugpas and Sakyas have been relying upon Dorje Shugden as an enlightened Protector for four hundred years.”

    In his book “Heart Jewel”, Geshe Kelsang specifically mentions two Sakya lamas, Morchen Dorjechang Kunga Lhundrup and Sachen Kunlo, who he seems to imply regarded Dorje Shugden as an enlightened being. Elsewhere he states

    “Not only Gelugpa Lamas believe this, some Sakya Lamas also believe that Dorje Shugden is a holy being. In the book by Dhongtog Tulku Tenpai Gyaltsen he says that Dorje Shugden cannot be a worldly spirit because he is a Bodhisattva.” [http://www.dharmaprotector.org/othertraditions.html]

    I do find this last remark rather puzzling as, along with Chatral Rinpoche and Lobsang Gyatso, Dhongtog Tulku is well-known as an author of works forcefully arguing that Dorje Shugden is a worldly spirit! One of his works has been translated into English and goes by the title of “Earth shaking thunder of true word: a refutation of attacks on the advice of HH Dalai Lama regarding the propitiation of guardian deities.”

    In “Heart Jewel”, Geshe Kelsang writes that Morchen told his disciples “Now is the time to rely upon Dorje Shugden”. However, according to Morchen’s namthar (spiritual biography) he himself did not rely upon Dorje Shugden! Instead he relied upon Panjaranatha, Shri Devi and Caturmukha, the usual protectors of the Sakya Order.

    During the late 90s there was an ongoing debate regarding Dorje Shugden on the Google group, “talk religion”, though I have only looked at some of the postings there recently. In Dec 97 [see http://groups.google.com/group/talk.religion.buddhism/browse_frm/thread/afe317295cba1a71?scoring=d&%5D Chris Fynn (#14) wrote the following to Geshe Kelsang.

    “You also write that Sakya Lama Morchen Kunga Lhundrup said that Dorje Shugden is an enlightened being and encouraged his followers to rely upon him. Could you please provide an exact reference to support this conflicting claim of yours? A friend of mine carefully read the autobiography of Morchen Kunga Lhundrup (Lamdre Collection, Volume #5, folio 451-625) and found only one reference to Shugden (which occurs on folio 577) where Morchen Kunga Lhundrup makes reference to making an offering to Dorje Shugden Tsal ‘so that oaths are maintained.’

    There are also very long detailed lists of teachings that Morchen received and detailed lists of the teachings etc he gave at various places and to specific students. Nowhere in these lists it seems is Shugden mentioned as a teaching or a scriptural reading (lung) received or transmitted.”

    It seems noteworthy that, in his reply to Chris Fynn, Geshe Kelsang (#23, 24) did not provide the exact reference that Chris Fynn requested.

    In Feb 98 [see http://groups.google.com/group/alt.religion.buddhism.tibetan/browse_frm/thread/3f0b6e4a7efc18bb?scoring=d&%5D,Chris Fynn (#122) posted the following (not this time to Geshe Kelsang).

    “In his book ‘Heart Jewel’ Geshe Kelsang -without giving any reference claims- that Morchen Kunga Lhundrup worshipped Shugden as an enlightened protector and Alan Bird has recently claimed here that Morchen ‘encouraged his disciples to rely upon Dorje Shugden’.

    However in Morchen’s hagiography within the Lam Dre, Gyalpo Shugden is mentioned only once (the actual reference can be found in my previous post). There is also a list of all the empowerments Morchen gave – he gave the initiations of both the greater and lesser Mahakala several times however, there is no record of giving any initiation of Gyalpo Shugden, not even once. Now I’m sure Ven Geshe Kelsng believes that Morchen Kunga Lhundrup said these things and Alan and you believe Geshe Kelsang – but since this is such a controversial matter it is only reasonable that you are asked to provide proper references for these assertions. For two years people on this list (arbt) have asked for such textual references and, so far, no Shugden supporter has managed to provide them. The Lam Dre collection, the Sakya Khabum and numerous other Sakya works can be found in many university libraries, at the Tibetan Institute in Sarnath, at many Sakya monastaries. Surely it is not beyond the capacity of Geshe Kelsang and his students to come up with the source of his quote in a Sakya text if there is one.”

    Of course, this situation may have changed since the late 1990s but I’m not aware that any Shugden supporter has yet come up with such a quote. Any clarification would be welcome.

    With regard to Sachen Kunlo (Sakya Trizin Kunga Lodro), in #117 [same thread as Chris Fynn’s #122] the poster quotes a statement by Sakya scholar, Jeff Watt. It’s a little long, I’m afraid, but I quote it here in full as I think it’s instructive.

    “According to Sakyapa oral history a high-ranking Gelugpa Lama, who lived in the 17th Century, committed suicide due to mental distress and subsequently became a daemon bent on causing many problems in Central Tibet and on seeking revenge against his enemies. Many lamas tried to subjugate the daemon but to no avail. Sakya Trizin Sonam Rinchen (the son of Sakya Trizin Ngawang Kunga Tashi, 1656-1711) was finally able to subjugate the worldly daemon, who is now known as Gyalpo Shugden. There is some controversy over which lama actually subjugated Shugden, some believe it was the Head of the Nyingma Tradition. In one of these stories Shugden was being subjugated by the Nyingma Lama and, being very afraid, fled to Sakya to take refuge with Sakya Trizin Sonam Rinchen. (See T.G.Dhongthog, ‘The Timely Shower,’ pp.104-127, 1974.)

    Because Shugden was so terrifying and caused so many problems Sakya Trizin Sonam Rinchen made an offer to him that Sakyapa monks would ritually feed him once a day by offering torma in the daily ‘Protector Puja’ and in exchange Shugden would not harm or kill sentient beings. This offer was excepted by Shugden. The main monastery of Sakya, Lhakang Chenmo, and its branch monasteries offer torma to Shugden daily and have done so for the past few hundred years. The text used is approximately one folio in length, back and front. No branch of the Sakyapas (Ngorpa, Tsharpa, etc.) other than the original tradition practice the torma offering to Shugden.

    As stated above, it is said in the oral tradition that Sakya Trizin Sonam Rinchen either subjugated Shugden or gave refuge to him when he was being subjugated by a Nyingma lama. However, there are problems with this. The 5th Dalai Lama lived between 1616-1682. The father of Sonam Rinchen was Sakya Trizin Ngawang Kunga Tashi 1656-1711. It may have been that Shugden continued to cause disruptions in Central Tibet after the 5th Dalai Lama passed away and was then subjugated by Sonam Rinchen.

    Shugden is completely a worldly deity. I have never seen any text or heard of any oral commentary coming from a Sakyapa Lama, living or dead, past or present, that states anything other than the worldly nature of Shugden. In particular, he is not regarded by Sakyapas as an emanation of Manjushri or of Yamantaka.

    According to the Sakyapa tradition Shugden belongs to a set of three deities known as the ‘Three Kings’: Tsi’u Marpo, Dorje Saithrap and Shugden. As a minor protector in Sakya he has on occasion developed a closer relationship with some Sakya Lamas. SAKYA TRIZIN KUNGA LODRO, a scholar and mahasiddha, and son of Sakya Trizin Sonam Rinchen, wrote a slightly longer ‘torma offering’ puja text (“Shug-den Gyal-so”). He also created a dance for Shugden so he was not left out during the large Mahakala celebrations where all the protectors are represented with music and dance”.

    There is no doubt that Sonam Rinchen and Sachen Kunlo wrote torma offerings to Dorje Shugden. But equally, there is no doubt that these were offerings not to an enlightened protector but to a worldly protector.

    Best regards

    SC

  342. believing is seeing

    “and then we will tie you up and tickle your feet with peanut-flavoured hankies.”

    now thatz wrathful AND ridiculous ~ it hardly gets better than that