Who made Lama Zopa a Rinpoche?

Originally published on June 11, 2009

(Source: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/forum/index.php?topic=49.0)

This website helps me to see things better but what I as I have always believed deep in my heart the same beliefs as expressed in this website…

I respect H.H. the Dalai Lama and I respect Dharmaphala Dorje Shugden. Just like my teacher Lama Yeshe who had supreme faith in H.H. and trusted Dorje Shugden his whole life till he passed away.

LAMA YESHE was the very symbol of skillful compassionate action in constant motion and he mentioned many times that Dorje Shugden made his works grow as far as it did during his life time. Lama stayed true to his root teachers such as H.H. Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche, Geshe Rabten and H.H. Kyabje Zong Rinpoche showing us what guru devotion is really meant to be free of political inclinations.

In his practice of Dorje Shugden, Lama never hinted even slightly of sectarianism, or disregard for any form of religion never mind Buddhism. Lama would sometimes make breakfast for us students and during breakfast go into a dharma subject we were unclear about, or praise of H.H. the Dalai Lama or one of his personal teachers.

That truly was an age of ‘innocence’ sort of a way to say. Very inspiring stories at that. I miss those days before the controversies. Much simpler back then. Simpler that there was next to zero in lama-bashing, centre-bashing, lineage-bashing or siding up with H.H. the Dalai Lama for political reasons.

It was Lama who cared for me and taught me patiently. It is Lama whom I owe everything to. I will choose Lama always.

I am grateful to Lama for the dharma he imparted to so many. I express my gratefulness to Lama by myself never criticizing or doubting any of his practices or the practices he so compassionately gave us.

If Lama can have such deep affection/faith for H.H. the Dalai Lama, tremendous effort of guru devotion in his lamas, and keep up the practice of his protector Dorje Shugden throughout his life and see no conflicts, then I will do the same in my limited capacity.

I respect the Dalai Lama from my heart, but my root guru is Lama Yeshe and he advised us to practice Dorje Shugden and I will do so till the end.

If I must choose between the Dalai Lama and my root guru, Lama Yeshe, then I choose Lama Yeshe. He is the one that cared for me. Patiently taught me the dharma in a down-to-earth pragmatic level.

Lama Yeshe was not considered to be a scholar, or have studied much or even considered learned by his own Tibetan peers. Lama Yeshe was not a Rinpoche per se, nor ‘qualified’ to sit on a throne in a monastic environment, and did not obtain his Geshe degree that some equate as qualified to teach these days, but he was instrumental to bring thousands onto the path of BuddhaDharma.

He had real experiential knowledge of the dharma and was able to convey it in such a way that it would literally change the lives of hundreds as it did me.

I have met the Dalai Lama a few times and feel very fortunate, but the actual lama that took care of me was Lama Yeshe. I will view him as my refuge. In my meditations I invite Dalai Lama, Lama Zopa, Zong Rinpoche to dissolve into Lama Yeshe and then I focus on Lama Yeshe and proceed with my refuge.

Even when Lama was hospitalized for the last time and ‘dying’, H.H. Kyabje Zong Rinpoche flew in to perform the rituals, prayers, ceremonies necessary. The actual cremation H.H. Zong Rinpoche again flew into Vajrapani Institute in California to oversee the whole procedure. That shows us Lama’s deep guru samaya intact that on his deathbed, his great lama would personally fly in to do the rites both during his death process and again during the cremation.

Kyabje Zong Rinpoche performing puja for Lama when he was extremely sick

Lama made no conflicts between the great lamas, his lamas, lineages, schools, diverse religions and certainly not dorje shugden and I think that embodies his capacity to think from a deeper wisdom. I bow to Lama. I MISS LAMA.

I hope his students will keep their samaya clean to Lama. I hope his students will never criticize H.H. the Dalai Lama, H.H. Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche, H.H. Kyabje Zong Rinpoche, their practices and their students.


I am very happy to see Lama Yeshe’s sacred picture in this website’s masters sections. Many people are afraid to say the truth to look politically wrong. But that is not what the dharma is about. We should let go of attachment of this sort and just do our practice. Ego-less state of mind is the goal of our practice as Lama would say.

Lama relied on Dorje Shugden, just as Kyabje Zong Rinpoche did. When we condemn Dorje Shugden, aren’t we condemning Lama’s choices? Aren’t we condemning Kyabje Zong Rinpoche’s choices?

Also never to criticize Dorje Shugden and the practices Lama gave us SO THAT HIS CURRENT INCARNATION CAN MANIFEST AS A DHARMA TEACHER. The only way his unmistaken current incarnation can manifest as a great dharma teacher again, is if his students keep samaya clean free of politics and free of politically motivated actions in the name of dharma.

Otherwise, it would be the responsibilities of the students if the current Lama Yeshe incarnation cannot perform the actions as he had set out to do. After all, if we as FPMT members criticize others who practice Dorje Shugden, then that will accumulate very heavy karma. Why? Because we destroy the faith of others in their gurus.

Do we have the right to do that? Does Lama Zopa’s closeness with H.H. the Dalai Lama validate FPMT CENTRES AND MEMBERS TO BE SOME KIND OF SPIRITUAL POLICE. That type of spiritual arrogance will be the downfall of any dharma organization. IT IS CONTRARY TO THE SPIRIT OF LAMA YESHE’S ASPIRATIONS.

We should reflect Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa well, by never criticizing other sects, lamas, lineages, practices, Dorje Shugden, etc. Why because it contradicts Lama Yeshe’s Bodhicitta aspirations. We should not especially criticize lamas who are spiritual heirs of Sera, Gaden, Drepung or who are students of Pabongkha, Trijang, Zong Rinpoches. Why? Because they are OUR LINEAGE LAMAS ALSO AND THEY ALL PRACTICED DORJE SHUGDEN AS THEIR PRINCIPLE PROTECTOR.

What if Lama’s reincarnation decides not to take over?

After all, think, how many years will Lama Zopa be alive. If Lama Osel, doesn’t decide to take over, or manifest as in his previous life, then what will happen to FPMT after Lama Zopa is gone. I shudder to think that. So we MUST CREATE THE CAUSES FOR FPMT TO SURVIVE AND LAMA OSEL TO MANIFEST AS HIS PREVIOUS LIFE BY KEEPING OUR SAMAYA CLEAN. HELPING OTHERS TO KEEP THEIR SAMAYAS CLEAN TO THEIR LAMAS BY NEVER CRITICIZING.

We can set out to cross the bridge, but if others destroy the bridge, then to get to the other side would take much more effort after great delays. Lama Zopa is working so hard, but the sad time will come when he enters death, then if Lama Osel’s incarnation is willing to take over, it will be smooth. Otherwise what will happen. What will become of all that has been started??? That would be such a waste.

So myself, I keep up my practices to create the causes for that. We cannot think of Lama’s work just expanding in our life time which it can due to Lama Zopa. But into future lifetimes. Future generations. So for that to happen, we need continuation of Lama’s successor.

If we just follow along the current political tides, we may look clean and good, but simultaneously it becomes damaging to what Lama’s previous incarnation practiced and that would not be very good. What’s the point if Lama’s centers and works grow now and after Lama Zopa’s passing, it stops, slows down or what not?

Is spiritual attainments gained by flashing pictures we have taken together with the Dalai Lama to other centers and justifying our arrogant authoritarian ways with that? I don’t think so.

I think if Dalai Lama is close to FPMT we should reflect that well by being even more humble, even more gentle, even more kind so we do not stain the name of H.H. the Dalai Lama. We cannot uplift his name or prove our guru devotion to him by putting down anything in regards to Dorje Shugden. That would be a heavy price to pay at the expense of our own Lama Yeshe’s heart protector. That is Dorje Shugden.

So when Lama was alive, we practice Dorje Shugden and Dorje Shugden is ok and a Buddha.

Lama Yeshe (far right) and Lama Zopa (second from right) doing a puja underneath a thangka of Dorje Shugden.

Kopan had monthly ‘secret’ pujas to Dorje Shugden as with most of the centers. The FPMT centers that were fortunate to have a great lama/geshe living nearby would always invite them monthly to the centers to do the monthly Dorje Shugden pujas as instructed by both Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa.

The young Kyabje Pabongkha Rinpoche who resides in Nepal was often invited to Kopan Monastery to perform incredible pujas. Even before the current new Kopan Prayer Hall was built, many preliminary pujas had to be done on the land before the foundation was set. Kopan invited Kyabje Pabongkha Rinpoche to perform them.

Then when Dharamsala started stepping up on their anti-Shugden campaign, Kopan cut their ties with Pabongkha Rinpoche. It remains so till this day amazingly and he is the reincarnation of our lineage master!!!

I was amazed when I heard that from very reliable sources. In fact, Kopan wanted to look good, that the monk administrators influenced some Taiwanese sponsors against Pabongkha Rinpoche. Rinpoche was promised by them to build a Pabongkha Monastery in Nepal, and the Taiwanese had promised to sponsor it.

In order to get on Dharamsala’s good side and to get the sponsorship for themselves, Kopan administrative monks told the Taiwanese sponsors (which I will withhold name from here) that Pabongkha Rinpoche is not following Dalai Lama’s instructions to abandon Shugden practice and that they should not support Pabongkha’s Rinpoche’s intent on building the Monastery in Nepal.

Consequently it worked and unfortunately for Kopan’s karma. My question is, who put Kopan as the spiritual police in Nepal and so daringly create schism between their lineage guru’s sponsors??

For example, the Delhi FPMT branch centre in the past on monthly basis would invite the great Rongtha Gyabgon Rinpoche who lived in Ladakh Budh Vihar, New Delhi to perform the pujas at their centre every month. Dorje Shugden full puja was done at FPMT centre in Delhi monthly with great offerings. It was advised by Lama Zopa. In fact, Lama Zopa used to perform the Dorje Shugden pujas in both Kopan and Delhi himself on many occasions!!

Himalayan Yogic Institute in Katmandu had a Dorje Shugden statue in their side shrine room in a box with offerings, it would be opened from time to time as did the Delhi centre.

So Kopan is now very great, how did Dorje Shugden damage Kopan?? What was the wrong results manifesting now due to the decades that Lama Yeshe practiced Dorje Shugden and had Kopan do pujas monthly?? So if a friend helped us in the past, and we get a new friend, we simply abandon the old friend? Is that ethical or dharmic?

Lama Yeshe in Kopan, 1975 doing a puja during the 8th Meditation Course. Thanks to Lama’s reliance on Dorje Shugden, Kopan has grown to become great today. So how did Lama’s reliance on Dorje Shugden curtail Kopan’s success?

Then Lama dies and we don’t practice because H.H. the Dalai Lama says not to. And HH has reasons beyond our ordinary minds can conceive. Then one unfortunate day, H.H. Dalai Lama passes away (very sad time) and Lama Yeshe is back and then we again practice Dorje Shugden?? I mean that is a strange scenario. Back and forth that is.

It is very sad, because many of the FPMT centers now go on spiritual witch-hunts condemning other centers in their same cities. Using Dorje Shugden practice as negative as their ‘pure’ reasoning to take students away from their respective centers to join the nearby FPMT centers. But in fact they are just as I see it, trying to increase their own memberships.

I have witnessed this. Many, many, many of the older Lama Yeshe students have gone underground with their practices of Dorje Shugden. Some like me do not really go to the centers here in the USA anymore. They will not abandon their practice of Dorje Shugden because of their great devotion to Lama Yeshe and are somewhat flabbergasted at the direction that some new FPMT centers’ are going with their arrogant witch hunts.


We must practice the essence of what HH teaches as did Lama Yeshe, which are tolerance, compassion, forgiveness and not ever slandering any lama, dharma, lineage or practice. As the karmic retributions will fall onto us. We should never mislead new FPMT students toward this line of thought. We are destroying our organization slowly if we do so.

FPMT centers citing so and so practice Dorje Shugden and so therefore they are not pure. That is so hypocritical and political because Lama Yeshe practiced and Lama Zopa was recognized as a tulku by Dorje Shugden himself. In Dorje Shugden is a ghost, then Lama Zopa’s recognition becomes nil.

In fact some of the FPMT centers’ committees are in direct competition to attach students to their OWN centers for fundraising, attendance, membership, etc. So they use the heinous method of condemning Dorje Shugden to scare other centre members into joining FPMT. In fact when they do that, it is a disgrace. Older/senior FPMT students should speak up to new and younger ones who have not had the great fortune to meet our founder, Lama Yeshe.

Lama with His Holiness Zong Rinpoche (seated) and Lama Zopa. Both Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa received Dorje Shugden from Zong Rinpoche Rinpoche. Was Lama praying to a ghost? What Zong Rinpoche praying to a ghost?

Lama Yeshe’s main protector practice was Dorje Shugden till the end. He didn’t take an unfortunate rebirth. Dorje Shugden didn’t harm him? IF LAMA YESHE WAS PRAYING TO A GHOST, THEN WHY DIDN’T HE TAKE REBIRTH IN THE THREE LOWER REALMS??

We must think clearly and not be swept away by convenient political tides in order to fill our dharma centers with membership so it gives it a successful appearance. If that was done, what would be the cost? It would affect Lama Osel’s current incarnation in not being able to manifest as a dharma teacher.

We destroy other people’s faith in their lama, and help them break their samaya with their lama, that karma would return back to us PERSONALLY AND AS A GROUP.

We as FPMT should respect our founder’s wishes and not ever criticize Dorje Shugden, his practitioners, his lineage, his followers in anyway because our founder, Lama Yeshe was one of them.

We shouldn’t practice or not practice what the current political situation pressures us to or not to. We should do what our lama says. So during Lama’s life Dorje Shugden is good and now Lama is dead, so Dorje Shugden is bad??? Wouldn’t that infer that lama was wrong, had bad degenerate practices, lacking in wisdom, had no refuge, had no attainments and wasted his life praying to a spirit??

So if Lama gave us Heruka initiation and practice, then it had no blessings because lama’s refuge degenerated due to his practice of Dorje Shugden?? Since Dorje Shugden is a spirit and Lama kept up his ‘sogtae’ (Dorje Shugden’s initiation) or life entrustment practices his whole life, then all of the other practices lama did was degenerated and ineffective when passed to us.

So any practices Lama Zopa received from Lama Yeshe and passes it to others would logically be degenerate also??? Wouldn’t it?

Lama gave many teachings and practices to us. It is our duty and commitment as his students that we maintain what Lama conferred on us, and not give it up for convenience or the sake of politics or financial benefits.

The implications are quite big if we choose to believe that way….So that would mean many of the practices that Lama Zopa does now and gives others that are directly from Lama Yeshe are degenerated because Lama Yeshe was degenerated?? Of course not. Very dangerous line of thought. Very ruinous direction we are heading toward.

I watched Lama Zopa get brow-beaten into ‘giving’ up his Dorje Shugden practices. And Lama has to be degenerated because H.H. Kyabje Trijang and Zong Rinpoches were degenerated we have to falsely assume. Both these lamas practiced Dorje Shugden till they entered parinirvana (deaths)…Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche entered into 12 days of clear light meditations in Dharamsala and Kyabje Zong Rinpoche, three days.

And their unmistaken incarnations are back recognized by both H.H. the Dalai Lama and Dorje Shugden via his oracle again. How come they didn’t go to the Three Lower Realms since they worshipped Dorje Shugden the ‘spirit’ their whole lives in fact in all their previous many incarnations they worshipped also.

They didn’t descend into the lower realms from a lifetime of practicing and propagating a Dorje Shugden. Since these great lamas have ‘degenerated’ their refuge by the practice of Dorje Shugden which implies they have zero attainments in the first place to choose a spirit to worship, then their other practices naturally became defiled.

Do we choose to believe that way of thought?? I and many others clearly don’t. It doesn’t make sense. Many teachers and thousands of their disciples around the world today are committed and practice Dorje Shugden today. Because they have been given this practice by H.H. Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche and H.H. Kyabje Zong Rinpoche. They are following the commands of their root gurus, so what are they doing wrong? We switch gurus like status symbols??

His Holiness Zong Rinpoche (left) and His Holiness Trijang Rinpoche (right) were both Lama’s gurus. Both of them practiced Dorje Shugden, and they in turn conferred this practice onto Lama. Lama maintained his commitment to them until the end of his life, so how come we cannot maintain ours?

These are both the root gurus of Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa. So we should not criticize other centers, lamas, students that practice Dorje Shugden. Be true to your dharma practice.

Even if hypothetically lama had given up his Dorje Shugden practices during his life, which he did not, his gurus didn’t give it up. So if his gurus did not give it up, then the practices received by Lama Yeshe would have been degenerated since his lamas are degenerated.

Lama Yeshe was inviting H.H. Kyabje Zong Rinpoche up till his death in the early 80’s to his centers giving teachings, initiations, transmissions and commentaries. And Dorje Shugden life empowerments to hundreds. So however you want to look at it, then many of the practice graciously conferred by lama Zopa today are in one way or another defiled or at least contaminated. Could that be so? I don’t want to go that direction.

So however many photos Lama Zopa takes together with H.H. the Dalai Lama and advertised (as today, affiliations with Dalai Lama in any way would hint at authenticity/genuine practice whether you are or not) or whoever many events of H.H. are sponsored by Lama Zopa, it still cannot wash away the inner degenerate practices received from Lama Yeshe. Is that what we choose to believe?

Lama assisting Kyabje Zong Rinpoche, who he was extremely devoted to. Lama never gave up his commitments. What kind of example are we setting for future generations of FPMT if we gave up what Lama gave to us? What does that say about our devotion to Lama?

Even if Lama Zopa truly gave up his Dorje Shugden practices to be ‘absolved’, then he would have to give up all the practices that Lama Yeshe gave him also or at least don’t pass it to others. Then we have to believe the founder of our FPMT Lama Yeshe WAS WRONG.

In order to be truly clean? Just giving up Dorje Shugden wouldn’t be enough as his root lama, Lama Yeshe would have to be thought of as WRONG IN LAMA ZOPA’S DAILY MEDITATIONS. I also don’t think so.

So I again request everyone to think of the implications. Otherwise Lama Zopa had no formal long term training in Sera, has never studied to be a Geshe and is not a known as a scholar. He is not a Geshe of any rank. But contrary to not being a scholar-Geshe, he has excelled as a great master anyways. How kind of Dorje Shugden to know that Lama Zopa would bring many benefit to others and therefore recognize him as a true reincarnation.

When Dorje Shugden recognized him as a great incarnation, everyone accepted and believed. It is believed and accepted until today WITHOUT QUESTION. So if Dorje Shugden is an evil spirit, what about Lama Zopa? Do we want to go that direction I ask again ? If Dorje Shugden is evil, then why believe Lama Zopa is an incarnation? Since Dorje Shugden pronounced it first.

I am grateful to Dorje Shugden for assisting Lama throughout his holy life. I am grateful to H.H. the Dalai Lama to spread Dharma even further now where the seeds have been sown way back then by the greats like Lama and his contemporaries for it to grow this big now..

This website speaks the same message as Lama Yeshe did. That is guru devotion, tolerance, acceptance and using one’s wisdom mind. I thank all those who participate in it and host it.


The famous oracle of Dungkar, taking trance of Dorje Shugden. There was only one oracle at Dungkar, and this oracle took trance of six deities, three of whom are Dorje Shugden or associated with Dorje Shugden.

There was a very famous oracle of Dorje Shugden in Dromo Geshe’s Rinpoche’s Dungkar Monastery. This Monastery was visited by H.H. the Dalai Lama. When Dalai Lama visited, he was so impressed with Dorje Shugden’s prophecies via the Oracle Monk, that there and then H.H. the Dalai Lama composed the prayer and praise to Dorje Shugden. Still in use today. I am sure it is the same prayer as on the Home page of this extraordinary website.

There were many incidences of Lama Zopa wanting to become a monk or join his uncle to go to Tibet when he was very young. His mother relenting finally sent the young Lama Zopa with his uncle to Tibet where they went to Dungkar Monastery.

It was at this Monastery, the monks asked Dorje Shugden in full trance whether this young boy from Nepal was indeed a Tulku Incarnation as the young boy himself insisted that he was. DORJE SHUGDEN CONFIRMED IT. Yes Dorje Shugden took full possession/trance of Dungkar’s oracle and conferred the Rinpoche title on Lama Zopa and till this day it still holds.

So the current holder of the whole FPMT organization, our own Lama Zopa Rinpoche, was recognized, installed and enthroned by Dorje Shugden himself as a reincarnation or a Tulku. It is on that basis that Lama Zopa received special training from Lama Yeshe.

Many didn’t know that Lama Zopa was recognized by Dorje Shugden himself. He is and many of the younger FPMT students can verify that with the book written by the nun Jamyang Wangmo. Excellent book.

I would recommend highly getting this book which tells you everything:



Written by Jamyang Wangmo (Vajra Publications)

You can get it at any major bookstore. The incredible thing is that His Holiness the Dalai Lama has given a foreword to the book!

Why would His Holiness endorse this book knowing that it was Dorje Shugden who confirmed Lama Zopa’s incarnation status. Isn’t the Dalai Lama inadvertently or indirectly endorsing the recognition made by Dorje Shugden by giving a foreword to this book which is the biography of Lama Zopa Rinpoche?

See Page 172-173 of this book. Also see page 376 (footnote 250, 256) where it mentions clearly that ‘Gyachen’ (short for Gyachen Dorje Shugden) took possession of the oracle that day and pronounced Lama Zopa to be a true incarnation. This Dungkar Monastery oracle was famous throughout Tibet to take trance of Gyachen Dorje Shugden, Tashi Ober, Kache Marpo and Namkar Barzin. Kache Marpo and Namkar Barzin both being Dorje Shugden’s main entourage.

Page 172 and 173

footnote 250, as referenced in Pages 172 and 173

footnote 256

In fact many of the great masters mentioned in this book took Dorje Shugden as their principle protector. Masters such as Serkong Dorje Chang, Geshe Rabten, Zong Rinpoche, Trijang Rinpoche, Trehor Kyorpon Rinpoche, etc. etc. It seems many of the Lamas connected to Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa are great practitioners of Dorje Shugden.

We of FPMT, especially the people who joined after Lama Yeshe’s passing should think of the future from a wide scope. Our founding father was a sound Dorje Shugden practitioner, and his legacy was passed to Lama Zopa who was invested as a Tulku by Dorje Shugden.

Our lineage lamas all practiced Dorje Shugden as their principle protector. We must not criticize this protector in any way. If he was so bad, or truly a spirit, do you think all the dharma protectors of Tibet cannot out beat him?

Do you think the Dalai Lama cannot do some wrathful pujas and just subdue him as was done to Nechung (In Exile From The Land Of Snows. Wisdom Publications by John F. Avedon. Chapter: Wheel of Protection, pp. 238-270). Could it be that and evil spirit can harm the Dalai Lama’s life, merits and activities? If he can be harmed, then what is the point we take refuge?

We must think deeper, harder and refrain from actions of body, speech and mind to get immediate benefit. We must think of our organization, the dharma, and our personal growth on a long term basis. Into our future lives.

I hope all that read this would understand better. That is my hope to write. As I have not said anything for over twenty years.

Yeshe Sangye



FPMT Lineage Lamas

If FPMT is to be a fortress of Dharma, it has to depend on the solid foundations by which it is built, and there is no stronger foundation than to follow the Guru’s instructions, as stated in Je Tsongkapa’s text The Foundation of All Good Qualities. The majority of Lama Zopa’s teachers are well-known stalwarts of Dorje Shugden. It is no secret that Lama practiced Dorje Shugden himself too. In fact, Lama Zopa himself says,

Of course, Lama and I practiced Dorje Shugden for many years. That was always the main thing that Lama did whenever there were problems to overcome. At the beginning of every Kopan course, Lama always did Shugden puja to eliminate hindrances.
Source: http://www.lamayeshe.com/?sect=article&id=1026

It is therefore baffling that Lama Zopa and any of the senior students of FPMT, most of whom have Lama Yeshe as their root guru, would denounce Dorje Shugden today. By contradicting their lineage masters, a number of questions arise:

  1. If most of FPMT’s lineage masters are correct about Dorje Shugden and take the Protector as an integral practice, how can the FPMT simply dismiss it on the whim of the Dalai Lama?
  2. If Lama Zopa so blatantly disregards the majority of his teachers, how can the FPMT hope to inculcate guru devotion in their students? And if there is no culture of strong devotion to the gurus, how can the FPMT teach higher trainings that requite absolute adherence to the guru’s instructions?
  3. If the FPMT agrees with the Dalai Lama and CTA as they seem to, and accordingly treat Dorje Shugden practitioners as criminals of society and enemies of the Tibetan people, then why list “criminals” on their official website as lineage masters?
  4. Following on from that, why continue to pass on the lineage teachings to present and future FPMT students if indeed these teachings came from lamas who seriously erred by practicing demon worship, as the FPMT claim Dorje Shugden to be?

Let’s take a closer look at the list of gurus that Lama Zopa names as his teachers:

1. H.H. Pabongka Rinpoche Dechen Nyingpo

Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche’s faith and reliance on Dorje Shugden was undisputed. This enlightened master, who authored what has been recognized as an important Lamrim text (Liberation in the Palm of Your Hand) by the Dalai Lama himself, taught the great importance of propitiating Dorje Shugden as the Dharma Protector of the Gelug lineage.

Read more: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/features/pabongka-rinpoche-wikipedia/


2. H.H. Trijang Rinpoche

In modern Gelugpa history, there is hardly any significant figure of the Ganden tradition who has not been a disciple of Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche. Trijang Rinpoche’s role in preserving the entirety of the Oral Ganden lineage and then passing it on intact cannot be disputed, and Dorje Shugden’s practice is an integral part of that tradition.

Read more: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/great-masters/tributes/a-tribute-to-his-holiness-kyabje-trijang-rinpoche/


3. H.H. Ling Rinpoche

Kyabje Ling Rinpoche was the heart disciple of Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche, and Ling Rinpoche received all his Dharma knowledge and practices from Pabongka Rinpoche. Ling Rinpoche, in turn, passed his knowledge and practices down to the 14th Dalai Lama. It is a known fact that Ling Rinpoche prescribed Dorje Shugden’s practice to many within the Tibetan community, and also composed prayers to Dorje Shugden.

Read more: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/the-controversy/dalai-lama-and-ling-rinpoche-a-contradiction/


4. H.H. Zong Rinpoche

A heart son of H.H. Trijang Rinpoche, Kyabje Zong Rinpoche had impeccable knowledge of all rituals, art and science, and was renowned for his ‘many actions of powerful magic,’ as a result of which ‘the most marvellous, indescribable signs occurred.’ Zong Rinpoche trusted Dorje Shugden wholeheartedly and advised his students to practice strongly and devotedly.

Read more: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/videos/must-watch/must-watch-advice-from-hh-kyabje-zong-dorje-chang-on-dorje-shugden-part-1/


5. Lama Yeshe

The founder of FPMT and a great practitioner of Dorje Shugden till the end, Lama Yeshe is well known to have commenced all-important Dharma projects with Dorje Shugden prayers. He remained devoted to his teachers and did not give up his practice of Dorje Shugden despite the ban on its practice.

Read more: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/the-controversy/letter-from-yeshe-fpmt/


6. Serkong Tsenshab Rinpoche

Serkong Tsenshab Rinpoche was a Dorje Shugden practitioner and his devotion borne out of his practice is legendary. Rinpoche absorbed the obstacles to the Dalai Lama’s welfare and works, and took them upon himself through the practice of tonglen. It is therefore incredible that anyone should accuse Dorje Shugden lamas of wishing to harm the Dalai Lama.

Read more: http://www.berzinarchives.com/web/en/archives/approaching_buddhism/teachers/tsenzhab_serkong_rinpoche/a_portrait_of_tsenzhab_serkong_rinpoche/part_8.html


7. H.H. Serkong Dorje Chang

Serkong Dorje Chang was well known for writing extensive commentaries on the tantric deity Chakrasamvara as well as an extensive confession and propitiation prayer (kangso) to the protector Dorje Shugden. In this kangso, Serkong Dorje Chang identifies Dorje Shugden as the principal protector of Lama Tsongkapa as well as the special protector of Ganden’s Ear-Whispered Lineage, the heart of the Gelug tradition.

Read more: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/great-masters/enlightened-lamas-series/serkong-dorje-chang-1856-1918-2/


8. H.H. Sakya Trizin

History shows that Dorje Shugden was first propitiated by the Sakyas. Dorje Shugden was inducted into the pantheon of Sakya protectors by the 30th Sakya Trizin Sonam Rinchen (1705-1741). Later, Sonam Rinchen named Dorje Shugden together with two other Protectors – Setrab and Tsiu Marpo – as the “Three Kings” (Gyalpo Sum).

Other Sakya high lamas who propitiated Dorje Shugden include the 31st Sakya Trizin Kunkhyen Ngawang Kunga Lodroe, the 33rd Sakya Trizin Padma Dudul Wangchug, the 35th Sakya Trizin Tashi Rinchen, the 37th Sakya Trizin Kunga Nyingpo, the 39th Sakya Trizin Dragshul Thinley Rinchen and the 41st Sakya Trizin, who later recanted his practice under political coercion.

Read more: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/features/dorje-shugden-on-a-black-horse/


9. Geshe Rabten Rinpoche

Geshe Rabten was the philosophical assistant of the 14th Dalai Lama and the first Tibetan Buddhist master to introduce the complete Vinaya-tradition and the study of the five major topics of Buddhism to the West.

Geshe Rabten’s faith in the Protector is clear by his statement, “This manifestation of the Buddha has no equal. If you are really determined to tame your mind, he will even give you his heart”.

Read more: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/great-masters/tributes/a-tribute-to-geshe-rabten-rinpoche/


10. Geshe Sopa Rinpoche

The Dalai Lama praised Geshe Lhundrub Sopa Rinpoche as an eminent “Buddhist mentor and a guide to hundreds of Western students and a pure lineage holder of the monastic tradition”.

However, this erudite teacher disagreed with the Dalai Lama’s view of Dorje Shugden, saying that “The idea of these ritual texts of Shukden is to spread and strengthen the pure teachings and destroy wrong views and practices, so their language and imagery tends to seem rather sectarian and aggressive”.

Read more: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/features/geshe-lhundub-sopa-speaks-about-shugden/


11. Gomo Tulku

Lama Zopa himself stated that Gomo Tulku worked to spread the Dorje Shugden lineage:

“My root guru, His Holiness Trijang Rinpoche; Pabongka Dechen Nyingpo, His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s guru’s root guru; His Holiness Zong Rinpoche, from whom many of the older students received the initiation of Shugden; and the previous incarnation of Gomo Rinpoche, who has a strong connection with Istituto Lama Tzong Khapa, here in Italy, all promoted the practice of Shugden. They were all aspects of the Dharmakaya”.

Read more: http://www.lamayeshe.com/?sect=article&id=1026


12. Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche

Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche was born in the province of Amdo and at age six was recognized as the reincarnation of the former Abbot of Kirti Gompa. Rinpoche received teachings from many high Lamas of the Tibetan Buddhist tradition including the practice of Dorje Shugden, which he kept all his life.


13. Zemey Rinpoche

So highly realised was Zemey Rinpoche that Kyabje Trijang Dorje Chang regarded Zemey Rinpoche, one of his heart disciples, as being equal to him in knowledge and attainments. Zemey Rinpoche held all the same lineages, transmissions and practices as Trijang Rinpoche including the practice of Dorje Shugden.

Read more: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/great-masters/tributes/a-tribute-to-h-e-zemey-rinpoche/


14. Ribur Rinpoche

Ribur Rinpoche’s devotion to his guru, Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche was legendary. He faithfully held on to all the teachings he received from Pabongka Rinpoche, including the Dorje Shugden practice.

As Ribur Rinpoche said, “I have had some success as a scholar, and as a lama I am somebody, but these things are not important. The only thing that matters to me is that I was a disciple of Pabongka Rinpoche”.

Read more: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/great-masters/recent-masters/ven-ribur-rinpoche/


15. Choden Rinpoche

Choden Rinpoche, one of the highest lamas in Tibetan Buddhism, was recognized and ordained by Pabongka Rinpoche. Choden Rinpoche was a fiercely steadfast practitioner of Dharma, saying: “I don’t remember too clearly my first meeting with Pabongka Rinpoche, but I do remember that Rinpoche was very happy with me. I really admired everything that Rinpoche did: the way he walked, the way he dressed, everything. I felt, “If only I could be like him”.

Read more: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/great-masters/recent-masters/h-e-choden-rinpoche/


16. Khensur Denma Locho Rinpoche

Khensur Denma Locho Rinpoche of Drepung Loseling Monastery was a direct student of H.H. Ling Dorje Chang. He was an expert on Manjushri’s fierce form, Yamantaka, amongst many other teachings and practices, and was appointed the Abbot of the Dalai Lama’s Namgyal Monastery from 1986 to 1991.

Denma Locho Rinpoche was a scholar of the highest calibre and a very prolific gentle teacher who did not discriminate against Dorje Shugden practitioners although it cost him his reputation.

Read more: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/great-masters/recent-masters/h-e-dhenma-lochoe-rinpoche/


17. Khyongla Rato Rinpoche

Khyongla Rato Rinpoche is a reincarnate lama and scholar of the Gelugpa order of Tibetan Buddhism. Rinpoche was born in the Dagyab region of Kham, in southeastern Tibet and eventually settled in the United States where he founded The Tibet Center, the oldest Tibetan Buddhist Center in New York City.

Read more: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/great-masters/recent-masters/khyongla-rato-rinpoche/

It is truly shocking to see FPMT policies that openly dishonor the practice of its lineage masters. Our root Guru, Lama Yeshe, was a Dorje Shugden practitioner. Kopan manifested with the help of Dorje Shugden. Sadly however, it appears that to be politically correct and on the Dalai Lama’s side far outweighs loyalty to the lineage masters and the pure tradition the masters used their lives to manifest.



Further Developments

After Yeshe Sangye’s stunning article on the fact Lama Zopa was recognized by Dorje Shugden as a Rinpoche, the news spread like wildfire. Lama Zopa tried to issue a clarification but it only served to confirm by Lama Zopa himself that he was indeed recognized by Dorje Shugden.

Lama Zopa’s “clarification” is included below. Notice that he ends it by saying, “So the Lopon for his own benefit asked the oracle of the monastery if this was true.” We ask – who is the oracle of the monastery? The famous Dorje Shugden Oracle of Dungkar Monastery, of course! See here: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/?p=307


Lama Zopa’s 2008 “clarification”
about being recognized by Dorje Shugden:

(Source: http://www.lamayeshe.com/index.php?sect=article&id=292)

To my very dear friends and students, I heard there is some misunderstanding about how I was recognized, so I just want to give you the details here.

The main disciple of the Lawudo Lama Kunsang Yeshe (who it is said is my previous life) was Ngawang Chopel. He did many retreats during his life and he also followed the Buddha’s example of offering his own body (charity) to the insects and animals for seven days; this was quite amazing as he completely offered and they ate parts of it and he had to be taken to the hospital. Later Ngawang Chopel also built a monastery at Maritika near a cave of Guru Rinpoche (considered one of the most holy places of Guru Rinpoche – where it is said He achieved immortality). Ngawang Chopel was with the Lawudo Lama at the time of his death. The Lawudo Lama explained the signs happening in the death process to him as he was dying.

Since I was born in a very poor family, there was doubt by some if I was the incarnation, mainly on the part of the son of Lama Kunsang Yeshe. When Ngawang Chopel heard this he went immediately to Tibet to consult high lamas and all six lamas he consulted confirmed without doubt that I was the incarnation of the Lawudo Lama Kunsang Yeshe. Two of the six high Lamas were His Holiness Tulshig Rinpoche (one of the teachers of His Holiness the Dalai Lama) and his root guru, the great Lama Rongpu Sangye. So at an early age, long before going to Tibet and the monastery at Pagri (small branch of Domo Geshe’s main monastery), I was recognized. Before I left for Tibet the son of Lama Kunsang Yeshe accepted me as the incarnation and promised to return to me the cave and texts, etc. belonging to his father after I returned from Tibet.

I was brought into Tibet by two uncles; both were my alphabet teachers. Why did I have two alphabet teachers? The first one was from Thami, near Lawudo; he took care of me. When I was very small (maybe four years old) I was always escaping and running home, so my mother sent me far away to the monastery in Rolwaling, a very isolated place high in the mountains near Tibet. There I was in the care of another uncle, Ngawang Gendun, who also taught me the alphabet (Tibetan). I stayed with him in Rolwaling for seven years, memorizing and reading texts and doing pujas called “shi-trol.”

These two uncles took me to Tibet. In Tibet I stayed with another uncle. He was in the Indian army; then he met a Tibetan lady from Tsang and they married and lived in Pagri, Tibet. Pagri was a very busy place for traders from Bhutan, Kalimpong, Lhasa, etc. The three uncles with some other Sherpas left me in the care of my aunt while they went on pilgrimage to Lhasa. They didn’t take me as they thought the journey would be too difficult and I could die, as I was still very young. After living some time in Pagri (hanging around), outside my house I met a very tall monk (externally appearing not to know me) and immediately he asked me if I would be his disciple (there must have been very strong karma with him). I answered him immediately “yes.”

Next day in the morning my aunt made a very nice thermos of tea and bread in a bamboo container inside a basket and took me to the small branch monastery of Domo Geshe Rinpoche’s main monastery about fifteen to twenty minutes’ walk away, where I met the tall monk again – he was the Lopon of this small monastery. The Lopon heard stories of me from people in the village, that I was a tulku from Lawudo near Thami. So the Lopon for his own benefit asked the oracle of the monastery if this was true.

With much love and prayer,
Lama Zopa Rinpoche


If you look carefully, the explanation from Lama Zopa Rinpoche does not deny the fact that he was also recognized by Dorje Shugden.

There are other descriptions such as about hospitals, insects, tall uncles, small monastery, etc. etc. etc. that attempt to distract the reader but Lama Zopa himself writes on the last line that the lopon of this monastery asked the oracle to confirm if he is a tulku or not. But he doesn’t explain what the oracle said and which deity entered the oracle. Of course the possessing being was Dorje Shugden, as stated in the book Lawudo Lama by Jamyang Wangmo. The book was written by one of FPMT’s own nuns and even more surprising, a foreword was provided by His Holiness the Dalai Lama. The private office of His Holiness definitely did not read this book carefully before issuing this foreword. Maybe they had no time to scan and read page by page so it most likely slipped past them. One thing is for sure – Lama Zopa Rinpoche, who is a special being, was recognized by the protector of his root guru, Dorje Shugden, another special being.

If Lama Zopa Rinpoche was not recognized by Dorje Shugden, then just say so. Just say that he was not recognized by Dorje Shugden. Simple and straight. But the fact is, he was.



Someone called Ronald Johnson further tried to deny all of this but his attempt was futile, and he was easily and immediately refuted:

You totally miss the point. Also, it would appear that English is not your first language so you would not be aware of the difference between recognized and confirmed. The implications of Yeshe Sangye’s first missive were that Rinpoche was FIRST identified by DS; Rinpoche’s letter clearly indicates that this is not so.

Look, anybody can ask DS anything…I could ask him if Tenzin Gyatso was indeed the Dalai Lama and he would confirm it. So what?

Also, to take a couple of sentences out of Jamyang Wangmo’s 500-page book and make a federal case out of it is simply obfuscation. Anyway, this happened in the mid-50s. The world was a very different place back then…especially Tibet. “



In response, a user on the Dorje Shugden forum known as Mountains says:

Dear Ronald,

My English being 1st or 2nd language has no point in this issue. I understand you are angry. I beg your forgiveness and wish you no ill. I am not attacking Lama Zopa nor FPMT, but the whole shugden issue has divided all of us. Imagine our Tibetan Buddhist world and how it would be if the whole Dorje Shugden issue was never brought up? Who did it harm? The majority of the Gelugpa High lamas and Geshes practiced/practice Dorje Shugden including Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa. Do you see any difference in Lama Zopa before when he was practicing and now when he says he is not?? He is exactly the same. Which leads you to believe with your own eyes, there is nothing wrong with Dorje Shugden. Lama Yeshe and Lama Zopa are both sublime beings who practiced a sublime Dharma protector.

(1) Do you deny that Lama Yeshe practiced Dorje Shugden his whole life until his death? Was lama Yeshe wrong in this? Was Lama Yeshe’s refuge commitments degenerated due to this? If not, why is it so bad, that lama zopa was confirmed by Dorje Shugden?? The point is not if he was confirmed or recognized, the point is that DORJE SHUGDEN’S PRACTICE, ORACLES, TRADITION, LINEAGE WAS WIDESPREAD/PREDOMINATE AND VALID IN THE TIBET OF THE 50′S. And you are right, Tibet WAS VERY DIFFERENT BACK THEN. The gelugpas were one and coexisted with the other sects beautifully.

(2) Do you want to hinge on one word of Yeshe Sangye’s letter that is identified? Whether Rinpoche indicates it is or not is not the point, the point is DORJE SHUGDEN was used to confirm his reincarnation status.

In the other Lama Zopa’s book “The Door to Satisfaction” by Wisdom Publications page X of Editor’s Preface, again Lama Zopa mentions clearly in the 3rd paragraph that the Dharma Protector of Domo Geshe’s Monastery CONFIRMED THAT RINPOCHE WAS A REINCARNATE LAMA AND OFFERED ADVICE CONCERNING HIS CARE. That we can conclude since Rinpoche mentions no other names of who else recognized him, whoever else did not hold much weight in the eyes of the ppl to caretake and train Rinpoche at that time. So they had to consult something to CONFIRM AND MAKE SURE Lama Zopa is who the others say he is. Who did they trust to confirm, Dorje Shugden.

If the great emanation of Tsongkapa, Domo Geshe Rinpoche would have a oracle recieving Dorje Shugden’s presence in his temple, definitely Dorje Shugden is a beneficial and beneficient being. Unless Domo Geshe Rinpoche was also unattained? I dont think so. Domo Geshe’s famous oracle in which HH the 14th Dalai Lama himself consulted in the 50′s at Dungkar Choede, can take full possession of 6 different dharma protectors!

They are:

      1. Dorje Shugden
      2. Namka Barzin (Dorje Shugden’s entourage)
      3. Kache Marpo (Dorje Shugden’s entourage)
      4. Tashi Obar
      5. Genyen Jingkarwa
      6. Pawo Trobar

Three of them are Dorje Shugden and his acolytes. Surely Domo Geshe Rinpoche whose people and temple nurtured and took care of Lama Zopa in the early years are not all evil, wrong and degenerate for propitiating Dorje Shugden? Domo Geshe is famed for his devotion to Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche (root guru of Lama Yeshe and HH Dalai Lama), His great meditative concentration on the Vajra Yogini Tantras and his powerful propitiation of Dorje Shugden. Is Domo Geshe wrong to have a famous Dorje Shugden oracle in his monastery that ppl came from all parts of Tibet to consult. On all states of affairs, governmental, secular, etc. Many high incarnations are found by the oracular pronouncements of Dorje Shugden’s oracles past and present, so why not Lama Zopa Rinpoche. Even the current Trijang and Zong Rinpoche incarnations were found and confirmed by the Dorje Shugden oracle or Choyang Dulzin Kuten of Gaden. Then only it was presented to the Dalai Lama for formal recognition. What Dorje Shugden found and recognized was further confirmed by HH. Is that so bad that Lama Zopa was also confirmed by the great protector of Lama Yeshe, Trijang Rinpoche, Zong Rinpoche, Pabongkha Rinpoche, Regent Daktra Rinpoche, Domo Geshe Rinpoche that he is authentic? Of course not.

The incarnations of HH the Dalai Lamas are all confirmed by Nechung Oracle, but recognized and enthroned by the regents of Tibet. So are the confirmations by Nechung Oracle for the Dalai Lama not important? You dont say that Nechung recognized the Dalai Lama, but he plays an important part to confirm that LEADS TO EVENTUAL RECOGNITION. Just the same in the case of Lama Zopa, where Dorje Shugden confirmed he is a real tulku and even gave advice on the care. And in the Tibet of the 50′s Dorje Shugden’s oracular pronouncements carry great weight as his famous oracle in Lhasa called PANGLUNG KUTEN OR ORACLE where many high lamas, nobilities,and government officials consulted for private and governmental affairs. HH kyabje Trijang Rinpoche very much relied on the accuracy of this oracle of Dorje Shugden/Kache Marpo. You can read in his personal autobiography of HH Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche.

(3) If Dorje Shugden was an evil spirit, he would of said that Lama Zopa is not a tulku, dont take care of him. Why would he say that? Because he can forsee Lama Zopa would benefit many and he would try to stop it not being happy about that. Devadatta did whatever he can to stop Buddha, but could not of course. Similarily, Dorje Shugden was so bad, he would try to stop Lama Zopa’s works to flower in the future.

(4) I see that Sangye has taken a couple of sentences out of Jamyang Wangmo’s book, to support the fact that even great lamas alive today are direct, or indirect products of the Dorje Shugden lineage of lamas, oracles and practices. It is not making a federal case. And If it was attempted to be turned into a federal case in any country outside of the Tibetan Exile footholds, it would never be a federal case. Religious freedom is tolerated anywhere in the democratic world. What is happening in the Tibetan settlements can only happen because of the pressures of ostracization. Muslims, satanists,Hindus, Sikhs, atheists, voodoo-followers, Protestants, Baptists, Mormons, Amish, Orthodox, Jews are ALL ALLOWED TO ATTEND ANY BUDDHIST SERMON IN ANY FPMT CENTRE IN THE WORLD. CAN ATTEND ANY TEACHINGS/GATHERINGS/INITIATIONS BY HH DALAI LAMA IN THE WORLD. ONLY DORJE SHUGDEN PRACTITIONERS ARE NOT ALLOWED TO. Doesnt that sound funny. Surely Dorje Shugden practitioners are ‘better’ than satanists?? Christians, Muslims would find the image of the Buddha blasphemous, yet their devotees are never barred from HH Dalai Lama’s talks, why is that? Because it cannot never be gotten away with?

(5) My point is simple. FPMT as well as many other centres, lamas, organizations in the world has practiced Dorje Shugden peacefully and without incidence for a long time. In some cases, centuries. What is the big furor now. Suddenly HH Dalai Lama is right and all other lamas are wrong?? Cannot be. If so, then HH the Dalai Lama can be wrong also. In the unfortunate time in the future, when HH passes away, what will stop ppl from saying his ban on Dorje Shugden was wrong?? In fact what is to stop people from saying it now. Since our gurus can be wrong, the whole basis of Guru devotional practices is severely disrupted. This is not a Gelugpa issue, but a issue of freedom to practice whatever lineage we wish free of any lamas condemnations. If one lama can condemn, then all can be condemned. Then who is right and who is wrong?? I dont want to go that direction.

(6) Dont hinge the whole thing on words such as recognition and confirmation. Lama Yeshe and his root gurus/lineage practiced Dorje Shugden. Lama Yeshe consulted Dorje Shugden on many issues throughout his whole life. That is what makes FPMT so great now. Lama himself mentions in his books that it is the protector’s divine help in all his works that made it grow. FPMT’s main sadhanas are composed by lamas that held Dorje Shugden as their principal protectors. So if you wish to throw out Dorje Shugden, you better abandon the practices of for example Cittamanitara, Vajra Yogini and Yamantaka composed by Kyabje Pabongkha Rinpoche. Since he practiced Dorje Shugden and that is a mistake, then the sadhanas he composed that Gelugpas do everyday could be a mistake also. After all he seems to be able to make mistakes. We have to be very careful. That is not the case definitely.


Again Ronald, I write this to you in earnest to help you and many people see that Dorje Shugden has never harmed and will never harm. If he does harm, just have the great lamas do a fire puja or binding puja and be done with it. Do you mean all the dharma protectors of Tibet cannot overcome one ‘evil’ spirit Dorje Shugden?? It is not as simple as that. There is a bigger picture as predicted by Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche. Dorje Shugden will go global. China will adopt the practice and on a governmental level promote the practice of Dorje Shugden first in China then from China into the world. The practice will go global and strong in the future generations. HH the Dalai Lama knows that. He cannot openly push it. So in his own way he is pushing it. China is already using Dorje Shugden as one of the bargaining ‘chips’ in the 6th negotiations with the exile govt of Tibet as stated by kalon Tripa Samdhong Rinpoche. China is taking great interest and HH is pushing it in that directions. That is a level much more powerful than our likes and dislikes within the Tibetan Buddhist Community. China will adopt Dorje Shugden’s practice and will make it grow as HH is pushing it into that direction. As predicted in the early 70′s by HH Kyabje Trijang Dorje Chang.”




Zasep Tulku Rinpoche’s autobiography, A Tulku’s Journey from Tibet to Canada, published in 2016, provides historical evidence and irrefutable proof that the Central Tibetan Administration is falsifying the facts when it comes to the practice of the Dharma Protector Dorje Shugden.

The autobiography of Zasep Tulku Rinpoche, a high lama of the Gelug lineage, provides accurate historical accounts of the Dorje Shugden practice. Click to enlarge.

The back cover of the book, click to enlarge.



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Historical accounts show that prior to the politicization of the Dorje Shugden practice by the Central Tibetan Administration, this popular deity was relied upon by Dharma practitioners to help in their spiritual practice. Contrary to detractors’ claims about Dorje Shugden being ‘anti-Dharma’, this Dharma Protector practice was traditionally deemed to be suitable to be practiced alongside the Highest Yoga Tantras.



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Zasep Rinpoche and his family were able to escape to safety prior to the events of 1959 through the clairvoyance and prophetic advice of Dorje Shugden through one of his oracles, Lama Gelong Chojor Gyamtso.



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Oracles of the Dharma Protector Dorje Shugden were known for the accuracy of their prophecies due to Dorje Shugden being a fully enlightened deity with perfect clairvoyance. As stated clearly by Zasep Rinpoche in his autobiography ‘A Tulku’s Journey from Tibet to Canada’, Dorje Shugden warned the Tibetans of the impending loss of their homeland but his advice was mostly ignored by the Tibetan government.

The Tibetan government chose to consult the worldly state protector Nechung, and Nechung advised that the Dalai Lama should remain in Tibet where he would be safe. This was mistaken advice, as historical events would later show. Fortunately for Tibetan Buddhists all around the world, Kyabje Trijang Dorje Chang had great faith in Dorje Shugden and consulted the protector for advice on the Dalai Lama’s safety. Dorje Shugden via the Panglung Oracle urgently adviced the Dalai Lama to leave for India immediately and gave the exact escape route. In saving the Dalai Lama from certain harm, Dorje Shugden prevented the destruction of Tibetan Buddhism and preserved the future of the Tibetan culture and people.

Zasep Rinpoche’s account of events concur with monastic records that it was indeed Dorje Shugden who saved the Dalai Lama instead of Nechung, contrary to the claims of the Tibetan leadership.



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Dorje Shugden’s practice was first established within the Sakya school of Tibetan Buddhism. The Sakya Throneholders regarded this Dharma Protector as an enlightened being and Dorje Shugden, together with Dorje Setrab and Tsiu Marpo formed the triune of Sakya Protectors known as Gyalpo Sum. Today, Sakya practitioners claim that Dorje Shugden was never widely practiced by their lineage but history proves otherwise. The undeniable fact is that before the CTA’s religious ban, Dorje Shugden was practiced first by the Sakyas and was later transmitted to the Gelug school where it was practiced by the majority of the Gelugpas.



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Contrary to the CTA’s claims that Dorje Shugden’s practice is sectarian, Zasep Rinpoche’s autobiography shows how practitioners of all four schools of Tibetan Buddhism lived and practiced together in harmony, especially during the early years of exile in India. It was only when the CTA launched a virulent smear campaign against Dorje Shugden that the general public began to label Dorje Shugden a sectarian practice. In truth, Dorje Shugden’s practice is no more sectarian than the practices of other Dharma Protectors such as Mahakala Bernagchen, Achi Chokyi Drolma or Dorje Legpa, who protect the Karma Kagyu, Drikung Kagyu and Nyingma schools respectively.



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By the 1980s, the Tibetan government had failed to fulfil multiple promises to return the Tibetan people to their homeland. A scapegoat was needed and they made one out of an ancient Buddhist practice, pinning the loss of Tibet and the failure of the Tibetan cause on Dorje Shugden. In his autobiography, Zasep Rinpoche is of the same opinion, stating that “…the [Dorje Shugden] controversy was orchestrated by the Tibetan Central Administration…”

The Tibetan leadership effectively sanctioned witch-hunts on Dorje Shugden practitioners and persecuted them using government instruments, declaring that simply by being a Shugden worshipper, one was effectively an enemy of the Tibetan nation.

As a result of the hatred against Dorje Shugden practitioners instigated by the Tibetan leadership, virtually all Shugden Buddhists had to fear for their lives, or at least for their safety.



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Dorje Shugden’s beneficial practice has continued to thrive due to the courage and commitment of high lamas such as Zasep Tulku Rinpoche.



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For centuries, Dorje Shugden has been practiced alongside the highest practices of the Gelug and Sakya lineages. Zasep Tulku Rinpoche’s list of transmission is an indication that the highest scholars viewed the Protector as an enlightened being compatible with their yidam practices.


For further reading:

Where is Lama Yeshe? (http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/features/where-is-lama-yeshe/)

FPMT Lineage Masters are Dorje Shugden Believers (http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/features/fpmt-lineage-masters-are-believers-of-dorje-shugden/)

FPMT, Dalai Lama and Dorje Shugden (http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/features/fpmt-dalai-lama-and-dorje-shugden/)

A True Inspiration: Claudio Cipullo (http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/news/a-true-inspiration-claudio-cipullo/)

Fabrizio Pallotti (http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/news/fabrizio-pallotti/)

Politically Correct at the Expense of the Lineage (http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/the-controversy/politically-correct-at-the-expense-of-the-lineage/)

Lama Yeshe and Geshe Rabten (http://www.dorjeshugden.com/mail-out/lama-yeshe-and-geshe-rabten/)

The Broken Samayas of FPMT (http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/the-controversy/the-broken-samayas-of-fpmt/)

The Questionable Policies of the FPMT (http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/the-controversy/the-questionable-policies-of-the-fpmt/)

Lama Zopa admitted to being recognized by Dorje Shugden (http://www.dorjeshugden.com/others-old/lama-zopa-admitted-to-being-recognized-by-dorje-shugden/)

Recognized by Dorje Shugden, but Speaks against Dorje Shugden (http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/the-controversy/recognized-by-dorje-shugden-but-speaks-against-dorje-shugden/)

Kopan Monks Asking for Dorje Shugden Puja for Lama Zopa (http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/the-controversy/kopan-monks-asking-for-dorje-shugden-puja-for-lama-zopa/)

Dakini Healed Lama Zopa? (http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/the-controversy/dakini-healed-lama-zopa/)

A Tribute to Ven. Lama Yeshe Rinpoche (http://www.dorjeshugden.com/great-masters/a-tribute-to-ven-lama-yeshe-rinpoche/)


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  1. Dear Yeshe Sangye,
    It was indeed a very well thought of post. It made a LOT of sense. The best part was when you mentioned about the lineage and the blessings. Very illogical to stop Dorje Shugden practice just because H.H. said so. My refuge is my holy Guru and I am eternally thankful for His blessings, teachings and initiations. Like you, He cared for me and love me without discrimination, endlessly. I do not disrespect H.H. in any way but He is not my Guru hence why should I follow His instruction to stop Dorje Shugden’s practice? If we say that our Guru is wrong in His practices, then everything that stems from it would definitely be wrong and without blessings. Why practice then? There will be NO attainments of any sort if we think like that.
    As a Dharma practitioner, we learn about wisdom and compassion. And we definitely learn about Karma. Everyday in our sadana, we aspire to be a better person for the benefit of others. So if we condemn anyone or anything, wouldn’t there be karma? Pure hypocrisy at play. Why even bother to practice?
    We have to take a step back, and analyze the whole thing again in order to have a clearer perspective of what we really want in our practice. Do we want to be spiritual or be involved in ‘politics’?

  2. A powerful article, a must-read! Makes people wonder, why are they so biased against China when all the other countries are doing exactly what China is doing but behind the facade of ‘democracy’? 👎

    Opinion: In Search Of Historical Parallels For China’s Rise
    October 15, 20182:55 PM ET
    Alexis Dudden teaches history at the University of Connecticut and is the author of Japan’s Colonization of Korea and Troubled Apologies Among Japan, Korea, and the United States. Jeffrey Wasserstrom (@jwassers) teaches history at University of California, Irvine, and is the author of Eight Juxtapositions: China through Imperfect Analogies from Mark Twain to Manchukuo and coauthor of China in the 21st Century: What Everyone Needs to Know.
    History can be helpful in making sense of what the Chinese Communist Party is doing within and beyond the borders of the People’s Republic of China. But when it comes to understanding today’s China, history is an imperfect guide. Neat parallels with the past aren’t possible. Certain aspects of China today are completely without historical precedent. And even when certain parallels do become possible, history isn’t helpful in quite the way that either Chinese President Xi Jinping or others promoting comparisons to the past may assume.
    Some have warned that as China threatens to displace the U.S. as a world power, war is inevitable — the so-called Thucydides Trap. While it may be tempting now to view the U.S. as Sparta to China’s Athens, this analogy does not stand up to scrutiny. There are more than just two major states locked in competition. Moves by Russia, the European Union, Japan and other powers will affect what does or does not happen next. The existence of international organizations and nuclear weapons alone makes it problematic to summon ancient Greek wars as templates for contemporary geopolitical tensions.
    Xi’s own ideas about the past are particularly significant, and similarly flawed. In promoting his outward-facing Belt and Road Initiative — an ambitious global infrastructure project — and his more domestically focused “Chinese dream” vision of national rejuvenation, he advances the idea that China should be seen as both rebooting and rejecting the past.
    In terms of rebooting, he presents the Belt and Road Initiative as putting a glorious new high-tech spin on the ancient Silk Road. In terms of rejecting, he presents China as breaking completely from the way two previous rising powers — the U.S. and Japan — behaved during the so-called “century of humiliation,” the period between 1839 and 1949 when they were part of an imperialist ganging-up on China.
    But there are no perfect historical analogies for the Belt and Road Initiative. It is not the modern version of the ancient Silk Road. That “road” was actually a set of roads, and they evolved organically, not via a top-down edict. In addition, Silk Roads also were defined by flows in different directions, with China being transformed by things moving into the country as much as by things heading out from it.
    Similarly, there are no perfect analogies to Beijing’s aggressive actions in the South China Sea or its creation of a vast network of indoctrination camps for Uighurs in Muslim-majority Xinjiang.
    As historians of China and Japan, what intrigues us, though, is that some of the most revealing imperfect analogies that come to mind lie precisely where Xi claims no precedents should be sought: in the actions and rhetoric of America and Japan between the first Opium War and the second world war — the period encompassing China’s century of humiliation.
    As America and Japan leapfrogged up the world’s geopolitical hierarchy, they each, as China does now, generated awe, anxiety and an admixture of the two. Much like China today, these two countries were associated with rapid economic development (facilitated by limits on the rights of laborers), technological advances (such as impressive new train lines) and territorial expansion (including, in each case, asserting control over islands in the Pacific Ocean).
    Leaders in Washington and Tokyo then, like those in Beijing now, often claimed to be breaking with the playbooks of previous empires. They asserted that their actions were motivated not by a naked desire for greater power but by a wish to improve the lot of people already under their control in borderlands or those being brought under their control farther away. When they used force, they claimed, they did so only to ensure stability and order.
    Beijing’s recent actions in Xinjiang and Tibet have echoes in Tokyo’s actions in Manchuria in the 1930s and Washington’s in the Philippines at the turn of the 19th century. Tokyo sent soldiers and settlers to Manchuria and exerted direct and indirect influence over the territory. Japanese official publications treated Manchuria’s people much in the same way as China’s Xinhua News Agency now treats those of Xinjiang and Tibet — as inhabitants of a backward and dangerous frontier that needed guidance from a government in a more advanced capital. In the Philippines, American proponents of expansion similarly celebrated the influx of new people and the importing of “modern” ideas, institutions and influences.
    History does suggest that Beijing’s leaders might consider doing things to make their actions less similar to the negative models of Japanese and U.S. expansion that loom large in China’s textbooks. They could grant greater agency to Uighurs and Tibetans in the path of their assimilationist development moves — allowing various languages to be taught in schools, for example — and reverse the trend in Xinjiang of disappearing people into camps, which conjures up other troubling historical analogies as well.
    In the South China Sea, Beijing is doing things that anyone steeped in the American and Japanese pasts will find familiar. But there are new twists.
    In the 1850s, the Japanese government built six Odaiba island fortresses in Tokyo Bay as a defensive strategy, primarily against the Americans. During an 1879 tour of China and Japan, former U.S. president Ulysses S. Grant boasted about his nation’s completion of the transcontinental railroad, which is notable in this context because it was a grand, “belt”-like project that, among other things, facilitated his successors’ annexations of Hawaii and the Philippines, as well as other islands.
    Beijing’s recent pressure on international airlines to shade Taiwan the same color as the mainland on their maps is a new turn. It does, though, recall schoolchildren’s maps in Japan being modified to include Taiwan in 1895, when Tokyo annexed the island into its growing empire. The same thing occurred again in 1910, when Japan subsumed Korea.
    One important difference between China’s expansionist moves and those of the United States and Japan is how they resonated at home. Until Japan took its dark turn in the late 1930s that resulted in the cataclysmic events of 1945, Japanese critics of Tokyo’s territorial ambitions could express their views in public.
    Mark Twain, a writer Xi admires, found it distasteful when the U.S. took control of the Philippines — when, as he put it, the “eagle put its talons” into new places with rapacious greed.
    Some Chinese citizens doubtlessly feel similarly about their government’s actions in the South China Sea, as well as its repressive moves in Xinjiang and Tibet. Unlike Twain or domestic critics of Japanese expansionism, though, it would be dangerous for China’s people to voice their concerns openly. That may be one of the most troubling comparisons from the past and present.


  3. It’s good to hear of your respect for the Dalai Lama and deep devotion to your root guru. Not many people dare to speak up and express what you did because of fear which the CTA have instilled in those who had spoken up. It’ll be good and beneficial for more people to come forth and say their piece and the truth.

  4. Although there are so many evidences proof that Dorje Shugden is not a spirit worship but peoples still dare not to speak up, They are afraid they will against the Dalai Lama or the center can not get sponsorship. Therefore the degenerate of Buddhism is due to the Buddhist themselves who are not dare to speak up the true but follow majority to live on, Thank you for those who speak up and correcting the misunderstanding of Dorje Shugden practice.

  5. Lama Zopa practiced Dorje Shugden
    Kyabje Zong Rinpoche practiced Dorje Shugden
    Both are High Lamas
    Both reincarnation came back perfect.
    End of story.

  6. Everyone should share the world equally.
    Everyone must place ourselves into others’ shoes, to understand & we shall receive the same respect & care from others.

    Simple & easy.


  7. If your respect your lama zopa, then respect what his practice. Even you don’t practice Dorje Shugden, never critisize him and other who practice it. Respect other belief , create peace and harmony with each other. This is basic human right what we live in this world.

  8. So Lama Zopa was recognised by Dorje Shugden huh? If Dorje Shugden is an evil spirit, why didn’t Lama Zopa tell everyone he is not a real Tulku because we cannot trust Dorje Shugden as he is an evil spirit? Of course, Lama Zopa would not say that, who would want to have their tulku status taken away?

    It is very sad to see how Lama Zopa gave up the practice his teacher Lama Yeshe held so close to his heart. Lama Zopa always shows his affection and devotion to Lama Yeshe but his action doesn’t show that. How can he give up the practice his teacher treasured so much so he can be politically correct?

    The Dalai Lama may be famous but all attainment comes from our teacher. Will Lama Zopa still get the blessing if he betrayed his teacher? If he doesn’t get the blessing from the lineage gurus anymore, how will the students in FPMT progress in their spiritual practice?

  9. This article give a complete explanation and evident that Dorje Shugden is not evil/spirits and many high lamas consulted him. I don’t know what else to make FPMT realise that Dorje Shugden is their lineage practice and how important to up hold the lineage else what is FPMT all about. Can FPMT exist without a spiritual background that link back their teaching all the way to Buddha Shakyamuni?

    FPMT future does not depend only of Lama Osel but their own students to mend their karma to create the condition for Lama Osel to come back and teach especially when Lama Zopa is gone.

    If they still don’t realise this than nothing much can be done and many people will start questioning based on the facts that presented above.

  10. It is so fundamental yet they don’t get it? It is illogical to expect spiritual growth and flourishing of centers with broken samaya and activities that generate hate, schism and run contrary to practicing Dharma.

  11. Thanks for this wonderful article. So well explained and I think those who’s using the Dorje Shugden ban to influence members from other dharma centres to join theirs by mad mouthing other’s lamas are very very bad. How can this being allowed in a dharma Centers. Hence the Dorje Shugden practitioners are the one that devoted to their guru! Keeping their samaya clean with their guru.

    I think the path of practicing Dharma is how we learn the truth of our minds and others minds. What makes us evil is not what people pray to but what their delusion lead them to. What’s scary is they do not realised the wrong they have done and there’s regret and remorse.

    Those dharma Center with big names may be famous and have lots of followers but chances of misleading the followers also very high.

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.…Instead of turning away people who practise Dorje Shugden, we should be kind to them. Give them logic and wisdom without fear, then in time they give up the ‘wrong’ practice. Actually Shugden practitioners are not doing anything wrong. But hypothetically, if they are, wouldn’t it be more Buddhistic to be accepting? So those who have views against Dorje Shugden should contemplate this. Those practicing Dorje Shugden should forbear with extreme patience, fortitude and keep your commitments. The time will come as predicted that Dorje Shugden’s practice and it’s terrific quick benefits will be embraced by the world and it will be a practice of many beings.

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