Dalai Lama Office’s Dagri Rinpoche molests women?

Dagri Rinpoche Thupten Lundrup Tenpey Gyaltsen a.k.a. Thupten Jangchup, who works in the Dalai Lama’s Office and is closely associated with Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT) and Sera Jey Monastery, is now in police custody after being accused of assaulting a woman on a Delhi-Dharamsala flight. According to sources, this is not the first time he has done this but the previous incidents were hushed up.

The opinion piece below was sent to dorjeshugden.com for publication. We accept submissions from the public, please send in your articles to [email protected]. 点击此阅读中文: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/?p=71482 

“People who commit sexual abuse don’t care about the Buddha’s teaching. Make it public through media, though they may not pay heed to Buddhist teachings on ethical behaviour, they will likely take notice if their face appears in the media.” ~ H.H. the Dalai Lama (Ladakh, 2017)

 


 

By: Kay Beswick

Indian media has exploded with the recent news of a Tibetan monk-official, Dagri Rinpoche, who is in police custody after being accused of molesting a woman. According to the reports, 65-year-old Dagri Rinpoche, also known as Thupten Lundrup Tenpey Gyaltsen a.k.a. Thupten Jangchup, is a resident of Bylakuppe and works in the Dalai Lama’s Office in Dharamsala. His accuser lodged a complaint at Gaggal police station, alleging that the assault took place on a flight between Delhi and Gaggal Airportin Kangra. Gaggal Airport is the closest airport to serve Dharamsala, where the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA; Tibetan leadership) is based. Everyone also knows that the Indian police are chronically understaffed and overworked, so they will not simply arrest someone based on a flimsy allegation. They must have done preliminary investigations and found something to convince them he is worthy of arrest. It is already well-known in the Tibetan circles that he has been grabbing at women for years now. A few points from this incident are extremely troubling:

  1. The word used by Indian media to refer to this incident is not merely that Dagri Rinpoche groped the woman through her clothes. It strongly implies that he actively tried to violate her and get his hands under her clothing.
  2. No one is surprised Dagri Rinpoche was detained for his behavior. The fact he was caught harassing a lady from Kinnaur, a region in India where Tibetan Buddhism is strong and people have a blind faith towards Tibetan monks and lamas, only confirms the news.
  3. Dagri Rinpoche is not the first person close to the Dalai Lama who has been accused of sexual harassment. Most recently, the Karmapa Ogyen Trinley who is endorsed by the Dalai Lama, has been accused of pursuing women in Taiwan. Similarly, Sogyal Rinpoche, Sakyong Mipham and Tenzin Dhonden (amongst many, many others) were accused of sexual abuse. All of them were heavily endorsed and promoted by the Dalai Lama.
  4. When questioned, Dagri Rinpoche gave his address as the Dalai Lama’s Office. It was a blatant attempt to absolve himself, and to intimidate the Indian police that they should not pursue the matter any further because he is associated with the Dalai Lama.

The Tibetan caption says he works in the Dalai Lama’s Office and his name is Geshe Dagri Rinpoche. Click to enlarge.

This, quite frankly, is disgusting because rather than thinking about the trauma experienced by the victim, Dagri Rinpoche’s first act was to try and protect himself and his reputation, by drawing on his association with the Dalai Lama. The fact Dagri Rinpoche used his closeness with the Dalai Lama to protect himself is precisely the problem. People like Sogyal Rinpoche and Sakyong Mipham were able to abuse women for decades because they felt invincible and entitled to behave however they like, due to their association with the Dalai Lama. Are Dagri Rinpoche’s actions excusable because he is associated with the Dalai Lama? No, because if a crime has been committed and a woman has been harassed, then there must be consequences according to Indian law. In the real world, the trauma experienced by the women victimized by these Dalai Lama-endorsed teachers is very, very real. It does not matter how close these teachers are to the Dalai Lama, because that knowledge does not take away the pain and sense of violation these women feel. Dagri Rinpoche is an incumbent lama of Sera Jey Monasterywhere he was educated for many years and received his Geshe Lharampa degree. Evidently, receiving a Geshe Lharampa degree did not imbue him with a sense of responsibility to protect the public’s view of Buddhism, given that he is dressed in monk’s robes and now accused of molesting a woman in public. A Geshe Lharampa is supposed to be very learned in Buddhism and we assumed he is practicing what he has learned. The crux of the practice is: renunciation, compassion and right view. Obviously his degree has become something of a passport to money and self-benefit, and not so much inner contemplation and transformation.

FPMT often promotes Dagri Rinpoche and he is frequently pictured together with the head of the organization, Lama Zopa. Now that Dagri Rinpoche has been arrested for sexual assault, will FPMT remain silent or will they continue to promote him as a valid source for teachings?

In recent years, Dagri Rinpoche has also been closely associated with Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT) who have heavily promoted him as a credible teacher on Buddhism. He is, for example, due to embark on a teaching tour and headline Wesak Day events in South East Asia. He is often invited to FPMT to give teachings in their centres throughout the world. All of these students who have received teachings, commentaries and tantric initiations are now going to be in a very difficult situation, and perhaps lose faith, feel disgust and feel cheated. Do Dagri Rinpoche and FPMT have any consideration for the damage they have done to these students, and consideration for their feelings? And will Sera Jey Monastery and FPMT now denounce Dagri Rinpoche’s actions, or will they continue to promote him as a valid source for teachings because it is financially lucrative to continue flogging a teacher who is associated with the Dalai Lama? There can be no other reason than that, because it certainly will not be spiritual. It is impossible that blessings can come from someone who has been caught violating women in this way. Of course, both FPMT and Sera Jey Monastery have also been very active in the anti-Dorje Shugden campaign to discriminate against Dorje Shugden practitioners. FPMT for example, renounced the practice to appear ‘clean’ and obedient to the Dalai Lama, and therefore worthy of receiving donations, funding and support. They renounced the practice although their founder, Lama Yeshe was very devoted to the deity. Now for you the reader, think for yourself – who goes to a deeper hell in their afterlife, someone who molests women or someone who practices Dorje Shugden?You think.

Sera Jey Monastery has been very active in suppressing Dorje Shugden practitioners. Now that one of their lamas is in police custody for sexually assaulting a woman, will they be as equally vocal about condemning his actions? Sexual assault is actually illegal in the eyes of Indian law, whereas Dorje Shugden practice is permitted due to Indian laws on religious freedom. Will Sera Jey Monastery uphold Indian law, or will they protect a sexual abuser?

Similarly, Sera Jey most recently implemented a badge campaign. Their aim was to segregate people who rely on Dorje Shugden, so a badge was given to non-Dorje Shugden practitioners to easily identify them as ‘clean’. Again, their campaign to uphold religious apartheid was to get in the Dalai Lama’s good books, to show everyone they are worthy of support. The irony throughout all of this is that Dagri Rinpoche’s previous life was well-known to be a very devoted practitioner of Dorje Shugden and propagated the practice to many people. In this life however, to be politically-correct, he has abandoned the practice. But according to the Tibetan leadership, if you practice Dorje Shugden, practitioners will take automatic rebirth in the Three Lower Realms so how come Dagri Rinpoche was able to reincarnate back into his current body? The world now waits to see what the Dalai Lama, Sera Jey and FPMT will do. Some people might even say that he was framed but the question is, what would he be framed for? And why him? In FPMT, he may be some superstar but out in the real world, he is a nobody. No doubt attempts will be made to get the police to drop the charges, in sheer disregard for the victim’s experience. In Tibetan society, especially if you are connected to the Dalai Lama, the policy is to protect the abuser and let the victim suffer. Sadly, it is also the case in Tibetan society where you can hold your vows, be kind and be an unblemished representative of the Buddha’s teachings…but if you practice Dorje Shugden, then you are instantly an anti-Dalai Lama traitor. However, if you are connected to the Dalai Lama, and you do not practice Dorje Shugden, then you can do whatever you like. But what is more anti-Dalai Lama, practicing Dorje Shugden or giving the Dalai Lama a bad name by abusing women and then trying to protect yourself by showing how close you are to him? In their rush to defend themselves, people like Dagri Rinpoche do not think how their defence may impact the Dalai Lama. They do not see that the public are also starting to question why the Dalai Lama endorses this type of behavior. Is this what the Dalai Lama stands for? Unless the Dalai Lama breaks his silence, then the answer to that question is ‘yes’. It is time for the Dalai Lama to come out to strongly denouncethese people. It is time for him to actively investigate everyone in his office and government, and remove people who have abused their power.

All of these teachers, endorsed by the Dalai Lama, have either been accused of or admitted to sexual abuse. This now includes Dagri Rinpoche who was recently arrested by Indian police. All of these lamas also do not practice Dorje Shugden and hence whatever they do is excusable, as long as they remain financially lucrative for the Tibetan leadership. (Top row L-R: Sogyal Rinpoche, Sakyong Mipham, Gangten Tulku. Bottom row L-R: Lama Norlha, Lama Choedak Rinpoche, Tenzin Dhonden).

Especially for Dagri Rinpoche who works in the Tibetan government’s office and with the Dalai Lama, not only should he be ousted from his position but some sort of repercussion or punishment is also due in accordance with the law. For someone who actually works in the Tibetan government and represents the Dalai Lama, when he commits crimes like this, what kind of example does it set if he is exonerated? Instead of teaching Tibetans to obey the law, people like Dagri Rinpoche show that with power and position, you can behave however you like with no repercussions. Is that the lesson a supposed Geshe Lharampa should be teaching? What teachers like Sogyal Rinpoche, Sakyong Mipham, Tenzin Dhonden and now Dagri Rinpoche have done to these women is highly reprehensible and deserving of the strongest condemnation. It goes against the fundamental tenets of Buddhism which is to do no harm to others and to cause no suffering to them. But Dagri Rinpoche’s victim, who now feels violated, will never look at the monk’s robes in the same way again. Fear, paranoia and trauma are the emotions that she will associate with the robes. This type of damage to Buddhismis palpable, and it is people like Dagri Rinpoche who are responsible, and no one else.

Click to enlarge

 


 

HINDI MEDIA COVERAGE

 

[DAMAN KRANTI] दिल्‍ली: दिल्‍ली से कांगड़ा आ रहे विमान में महिला से छेड़छाड़, आरोपित तिब्बती गिरफ्तार Tibetan man accused of molesting a woman in a plane coming from Kangra from Delhi


Or watch on server | download video (right click & save file)

Approximate translation:

Watch a news report of a man accused of assaulting a woman on a flight from Delhi to Kangra who has been taken into custody. On a flight arriving at Kangra airport from Delhi, a man molested a woman sitting on the plane. Upon reaching the airport the woman filed a report with the police. The report was lodged in Gaggal. The authorities have arrested the accused and taken him into police custody. The accused is a resident of Bylakuppe but for some time has been working in Mcleod Ganj at the Dalai Lama’s Office. The woman, a resident from Kinnaur, told police in her sworn statement that the 65-year-old Dagri Rinpoche Thubten Jangchub, a resident of Bylakuppe, molested her on the plane.

 

[NEWS18] दिल्ली से कांगड़ा आ रहे विमान में महिला से छेड़छाड़, 65 साल का बुजुर्ग गिरफ्तार Elderly arrested for molesting woman in Delhi, Kangra from Delhi

Click to enlarge (Source: https://hindi.news18.com/news/himachal-pradesh/dharamsala-women-molested-in-delhi-to-kangra-filght-old-men-arrested-hpvk-1953835.html)

 

[JAGRAN] दिल्‍ली से कांगड़ा आ रहे विमान में महिला से छेड़छाड़, आरोपित तिब्बती गिरफ्तार Tibetan arrested for molesting woman in Delhi, Kangra coming from Delhi

Click to enlarge (Source: https://www.jagran.com/himachal-pradesh/kangra-tibbati-man-tease-with-women-in-delhi-kangra-plane-19191754.html)

 

[RAFTAAR] दिल्‍ली से कांगड़ा आ रहे विमान में महिला से छेड़छाड़, आरोपित तिब्बती गिरफ्तार Tibetan arrested for molesting woman in Delhi, Kangra coming from Delhi

Click to enlarge (Source: https://news.raftaar.in/kangra-crime-news-state-tibbati-tease-with-women-teasing-plane-%E0%A4%A6%E0%A4%BF%E0%A4%B2%E0%A5%8D%E2%80%8D%E0%A4%B2%E0%A5%80-%E0%A4%95%E0%A4%BE%E0%A4%82%E0%A4%97%E0%A4%A1%E0%A4%BC%E0%A4%BE-%E0%A4%86-%E0%A4%AE%E0%A4%B9%E0%A4%BF%E0%A4%B2%E0%A4%BE-%E0%A4%9B%E0%A5%87%E0%A4%A1%E0%A4%BC%E0%A4%9B%E0%A4%BE%E0%A4%A1%E0%A4%BC/detail/ec9e4e49c2ba67cd2459f42005974c12)

 

[AMAR UJALA] दिल्ली से कांगड़ा आ रहे विमान में महिला यात्री से छेड़छाड़, आरोपी गिरफ्तार Female traveler from Delhi, Kangra coming from Delhi, man arrested

Click to enlarge (Source: https://www.amarujala.com/shimla/crime/molestation-with-female-passenger-in-delhi-kangra-flight)

 

[DAINIK BHASKAR] हिमाचल / 65 साल के तिब्बती मूल के व्यक्ति द्वारा 30 साल की महिला से फ्लाइट में छेड़छाड़ का आरोप A 30-year-old woman accused of molesting the flight by a person of Himachal / 65 year old Tibetan origin

Click to enlarge (Source: https://www.bhaskar.com/himachal-chandigarh/shimla/news/30-year-old-woman-accused-65-year-old-man-for-molesting-her-in-air-india-flight-01537189.html)

 

[HIMACHAL ABHI ABHI] डागरी रिनपोछे बोले, मैंने नहीं किया यौन उत्पीड़न तो शर्म कैसी Dagri Rinpoche Denies Sexual Assaults Allegations

Click to enlarge (Source: https://himachalabhiabhi.com/latest-news/dagri-rinpoche-denies-sexual-assaults-allegations.html)

 

[FACEBOOK]

Tibetans on social media are furious that another of the Dalai Lama’s associates is in police custody accused of sexually harassing women. This person explains the accused is Dagri Rinpoche Thupten Jangchub who is a Geshe Lharampa from Sera Jey Monastery and works for the Dalai Lama’s Office in Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh. He was travelling from Delhi to Gaggal Airport when he allegedly assaulted a woman from Kinnaur, a region in India where Tibetan Buddhism is strong and people have a blind faith towards Tibetan monks and lamas. (Source: https://www.facebook.com/palden.gyalpo.5/posts/680924665671499)

This Indian newspaper explains that Dagri Rinpoche is a member of the Dalai Lama’s Office and has been accused of assaulting a woman on a flight from Delhi to Gaggal Airport.

This explains that the accused is Dagri Rinpoche Thupten Jangchub who is a Geshe Lharampa from Sera Jey Monastery and works for the Dalai Lama’s Office in Dharamsala, Himachal Pradesh. He was travelling from Delhi to Gaggal Airport when he allegedly assaulted a woman from Kinnaur.

 

ENGLISH MEDIA COVERAGE

 

[THE TRIBUNE] Tibetan monk in eye of ‘MeToo’ storm

Click to enlarge (Source:https://www.tribuneindia.com/news/himachal/tibetan-monk-in-eye-of-metoo-storm/770574.html)

 

[THE TIBET EXPRESS] Second woman alleges molestation by Dagri Rinpoche

Click to enlarge (Source: http://tibetexpress.net/10307/second-woman-alleges-molestation-by-dagri-rinpoche/)

 

[TIBETAN JOURNAL] Senior Tibetan Lama Faces Allegations of Sexual Assault

Click to enlarge (Source: http://www.tibetanjournal.com/senior-tibetan-lama-faces-allegations-of-sexual-assault/)

 

[TRICYCLE] Tibetan Lama Dagri Rinpoche Faces Second Accusal of Molestation

Click to enlarge (Source: https://tricycle.org/trikedaily/myanmar-journalists-freed/)

 

[TIMES ASIAN] Tibetan buddhist teacher Dagri Rinpoche facing molestation charge

Click to enlarge (Source: http://timesasian.com/archives/6801)

 

[TIMES ASIAN] Spanish woman alleged Dagri Rinpoche had molested her ten years ago

Click to enlarge (Source: http://timesasian.com/archives/6838)

 

[LION'S ROAR] Prominent Tibetan lama accused of molestation by two women

Click to enlarge (Source: https://www.lionsroar.com/prominent-tibetan-lama-accused-of-molestation-by-two-women/)

 

[LION'S ROAR] UPDATED: Prominent Tibetan lama accused of molestation by two women

Click to enlarge (Source: https://www.lionsroar.com/prominent-tibetan-lama-accused-of-molestation-by-two-women/)

 

[PHAYUL] Ranking Tibetan monk denies molestation charges

Click to enlarge (Source: http://www.phayul.com/news/article.aspx?id=41433&t=1)

 

[BUDDHIST DOOR GLOBAL] Tibetan Lama Dagri Rinpoche Suspended from Teaching after Molestation Allegations

Click to enlarge (Source: https://www.buddhistdoor.net/news/tibetan-lama-dagri-rinpoche-suspended-from-teaching-after-molestation-allegations)

 

[THE TIBET TIMES] Prominent Tibetan lama accused of molestation by three women

Click to enlarge (Source: https://www.tibetwebsite.com/prominent-tibetan-lama-accused-of-molestation-by-three-women/)

 

[LION'S ROAR] Prominent Buddhist nuns urge investigation of Dagri Rinpoche

Click to enlarge (Source: https://www.lionsroar.com/prominent-buddhist-nuns-urge-investigation-of-dagri-rinpoche/)

 

[TIBET STAR] BREAKING NEWS: Is Dagri Rinpoche guilty?

Click to enlarge (Source: https://thetibetstar.com/2019/05/13/breaking-news-is-dagri-rinpoche-guilty/)


Or watch on server | download video (right click & save file)

 

TIBETAN MEDIA COVERAGE

 

[BANGCHEN.NET] བྲག་རི་རིན་པོ་ཆེར་བུད་མེད་གཞན་ཞིག་གིས་ཉེས་འཛུགས་བྱས་འདུག

Click to enlarge (Source: http://bangchen.net/42968/22/58/)

 

GLOBAL MEDIA COVERAGE

 

[BOEDDHISTISCH DAGBLAD] Boeddhistische nonnen eisen onderzoek naar beschuldigingen seksueel wangedrag Dagri rinpoche

Click to enlarge (Source: https://boeddhistischdagblad.nl/nieuws/127650-boeddhistische-nonnen-eisen-onderzoek-naar-beschuldigingen-seksueel-wangedrag-dagri-rinpoche/)

 

[hyunbulnews] 티베트 고위승려 부끄러운 성추문

Click to enlarge (Source: http://www.hyunbulnews.com/news/articleView.html?idxno=300063)

 


 

ADDENDUM

Jaki, another one of Dagri Rinpoche’s victims. Jaki has published a video (see below) detailing the sexual assault she suffered at the hands of Dagri Rinpoche.

A video of another one of Dagri Rinpoche’s victims has just been released. Featuring a former nun Jaki (also known as Kunsang), she exposes Dagri Rinpoche as a serial sexual abuser who has been assaulting women for many years. Significantly, Ms. Jaki’s video is accompanied by the statutory declaration that she lodged with Kangra Police Station at the time. Ms. Jaki’s statutory declaration, which is explicit and goes into a lot of details, is notarized as genuine and real. In her video, a distraught Ms. Jaki says that after Dagri Rinpoche abused her, she approached Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT) and the Dalai Lama’s Office for assistance. Instead of doing something about it, they called a meeting with her and tried to downplay the incident. Typical of those who blame victims of sexual abuse, they portrayed her as a liar and an attention-seeker, and as someone who is overreacting. Not only were they dismissive of her experience but later, Dagri Rinpoche even lied about the meeting, saying that Ms. Jaki had apologized for her behavior and begged for his forgiveness. That is, Dagri Rinpoche portrayed her as a lying troublemaker who is not to be trusted. The Dalai Lama preaches compassion but where was his Office’s compassion for her?No consideration whatsoever was given to the suffering she experienced and there was a total lack of sensitivity in how they dealt with a tramuatized person. Imagine a victim of abuse, already scared, already living in a foreign land, being confronted by a group of men, all of whom come with the intention of protecting the abuser.

Jaki’s friend, Celia corroborates her friend’s account, saying that many others were similarly abused by Dagri Rinpoche.

The betrayal is evident in Ms. Jaki’s voice, a clear reflection of the pain she has carried with her for over a decade. What appears to disturb her the most is the fact Dagri Rinpoche has been ordaining people for decades, and continues to do so with FPMT’s encouragement although they are aware of his abuse. Ms. Jaki questions the basis of those ordinations – is Dagri Rinpoche still a monk when he has been abusing women and breaking his celibacy vows for decades? Dagri Rinpoche cannot give monks’ vows to anyone, if he himself does not have the vows to give. Where then, does that leave his students? Given his abusive ways, how valid or intact are the vows he is supposedly transmitting, how many people has he ordained and are they really monks and nuns? Ordaining others into being a monk or nun is one issue; the other issue is the faith he has destroyed in people and the spiritual blackhole he has pushed them into. Who are these people to trust now? How many hundreds of students has Dagri Rinpoche given initiation, teachings, commentaries, oral transmissions and advice to? How will all of these people feel now and how should they see him? Is he their lama or do they give up Buddhism and their practice? How are they to view him? In light of these exposés, it is very disturbing that FPMT actually encourages people to form a connection with the abusive Dagri Rinpoche. Their attitude towards victims of abuse is deplorable, and demeans those who enter spirituality seeking salvation but are instead met with misogynists and abuser-enablers. There is no doubt FPMT has enabled Dagri Rinpoche to continue his pattern of abuse; it is clear from Ms. Jaki’s video that for years, FPMT have received reports of Dagri Rinpoche’s abuse but they continued to heavily promote him. Instead of taking a firm stance to protect their members, they continued to invite him to teach in various Dharma centers and there can be only one reason why FPMT did this – as a worker in the Dalai Lama’s Office, Dagri Rinpoche is a lucrative source of income and donations, and hence that makes it worthwhile for them to promote a fake monk. What also becomes clear is Ms. Jaki did not plan to film this spontaneously-shot video but the cover-up of Dagri Rinpoche’s abuse is becoming too much for her to bear. She was compelled to speak up against the cover-up that has continued with the direct involvement of FPMT’s senior members, employing one of their favorite tactics to downplay their organization’s wrongdoings – blame any ensuing uproar on Dorje Shugden practitioners.

Former monk and senior FPMT student Fabrizio Pallotti was one of the first to dismiss the latest exposé on Dagri Rinpoche, and direct unfounded accusations against Dorje Shugden practitioners. Is this how a senior FPMT student behaves, making accusations against people without any evidence? Now that Jaki’s video is public, what will Mr. Pallotti say about her allegations given it is becoming more and more evident Dagri Rinpoche has a history of abusing women? Does FPMT condone the behavior of its senior students like Mr. Pallotti who demean and deny the experiences of female victims of sexual abuse?

This is not a Dorje Shugden issue but FPMT often likes to accuse people of relying on Dorje Shugden in order to denigrate them and their organization. Why do they comment on the affairs of other organizations? It is not for FPMT to be the spiritual police of Buddhism, accusing people of this and that, as they do within the Dorje Shugden issue. Hence instead of actually addressing their wrongdoings, they like to claim that Dorje Shugden practitioners are lying. It is nothing more than a blatant attempt to scapegoat innocent parties, and distract the public. Denying the truth, what a strange attitude for an organization that claims to be Buddhist. In this case, FPMT people close to the Dalai Lama have come forward to say that Indian news reports about Dagri Rinpoche are fake, and people who talk about Dagri Rinpoche’s abusive actions are liars. These people have claimed that this was all orchestrated by Dorje Shugden practitioners. That is, instead of sanctioning an abuser, they choose instead to continuing demonizing a group of people for their religious beliefs. Is there any surprise then, that Ms. Jaki had such an awful and difficult experience approaching the FPMT management for help with her experience of abuse? Instead of taking away her pain, they added to the trauma. And what is worse, praying to something which the Tibetan leadership cannot prove is evil, or being proven as an organization that aids, abets and protects a person in robes who has sexually molested people for decades? Which one is the more evil sinner? Someone who has molested countless women who deserve respect because they came to you for spirituality, or people who practice Dorje Shugden? FPMT should not sweep this under the rug like they do with everything else, using elaborate explanations and eloquent words. They often make spurious accusations about other people being Chinese spies, but it looks like the karma has come back to them. The tide has turned as this is an issue can become massive and so how can FPMT bear a holier-than-thou attitude now? They, along with Sera Jey Monastery in South India where Dagri Rinpoche hails from, have to speak up. If they remain silent, their silence indicates their complicity in the abuse, and this will anger more people into escalating the matter. The damage Dagri Rinpoche inflicted on his victims is immense and the ones who have spoken up are brave. And it is thanks Ms. Jaki’s bravery to come forward and speak up that there is now clear proof that FPMT and the Dalai Lama’s Office are directly involved in the cover-up of a sexual abuser. This totally obliterates any denials that FPMT students and management continue to issue regarding Dagri Rinpoche’s innocence. What will FPMT do now, dismiss Ms. Jaki once again? FPMT should realize that women like Ms. Jaki and Dagri Rinpoche’s plane victim have suffered enough, without needing to have their experiences condescendingly dismissed as the so-called orchestrations of Shugden practitioners. We hope more victims will speak up and help put an end to the destruction of Buddhism arising in the form of teachers such as Dagri Rinpoche. FPMT, the Tibetan leaders, Sera Jey Monastery should not be concerned about protecting their own faces in order that the donations do not stop, but they should be concerned about protecting Buddhism and preventing further damage to it. This should be the priority. FPMT and the Dalai Lama’s Office have been hiding and covering for a fake monk who has been molesting and harassing women for decades. Ms. Jaki, as well as other people on Facebook, have stated clearly that there are many more victims of Dagri Rinpoche’s abuse. It is time they stop blaming everyone else for the rot in their organization. And it is time they make huge amends for the trauma they caused to Ms. Jaki and so many other victims. Throughout history, women have been suppressed, abused and marginalized. For FPMT and the Dalai Lama’s Office to be party in this, is disturbing, disappointing and disgusting. It is time they come clean about what else they have been doing before it is too late. The world is watching – what will FPMT do now?

Dagri Rinpoche is indeed a serial molester


Or to watch on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T05xLBZ_1WU

TRANSCRIPT (click to expand)

Hello, everybody. My name is Jaki, my Tibetan name is Kunsang. I’m making this video about the Dagri Rinpoche issue because I don’t have a Facebook account and this is the only way that I know how to make it public. Apologies to the followers of Awakening Project in my other YouTube channel because I owe you a video since so many months, and I’m publishing this one first. But I’m sure you’ll understand why, and sorry also if I’m gonna be reading a bit, it’s just that I have so many things to say but I don’t want the video to be too long, so I just want to stick to the important points.I’m making this video because I was molested too by Dagri Rinpoche over 10 years ago when I was a Buddhist nun and I was living in Dharamsala, alright. I don’t want to go into detail during this video about what happened because it’s very long and it’s very painful. So, if you want to know exactly what he did to me, you can read my statutory declaration that I made at Kangra police station, it’s 4 pages and I’m sharing that also. So, you can read it if you like. You can see what happened, he put his hands all over me, he tried to take my clothes off, it’s so long, it’s 4 pages so you can read it if you like.And after that, after I made this statement which it took me a long time to have the courage to do it because during over a year people were trying to convince me that it didn’t happen, or that it was just out of compassion that he was giving me a massage, and all sort of things that you can imagine. I’m sure you can imagine, plus I was a Buddhist nun, and it’s a very very stressful situation. And every time after abuse or molestation, one feels guilty, one feels confused, one is blaming oneself, “Why did I stay?”, “Why did I let him come close to me?”, “Why did I let him touch me?”, and so on and so forth.So, this was going on for over a year and it’s normal because after abuse you need many years, sometimes all of your life, you know, to start, even start working on it, but some people who were supportive of me, they convinced me to do this declaration and I did it. I got 2 certified copies at the notary, I sent one to His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s Office and one to the FPMT’s office and what can I tell you, nothing happened. I mean the Dalai Lama’s Office set up a meeting with me and Dagri Rinpoche, which he tried to prevent. He tried, Dagri Rinpoche tried to prevent that meeting from happening, and so they set up a meeting. I tried to record the meeting with my mp3 player, they told me that I couldn’t do that, that for safety reasons I had to switch it off, so I had to switch it off. I don’t have a recording of that meeting, unfortunately. And during the meeting, Dagri Rinpoche apologized to me. He said that everything he did was out of compassion, that he was not gonna do that again. He was gonna be more mindful in regards to how to behave in front of Western women. It’s all sort of, you know, all that sort of excuses and stuff.So, I accepted the apology and I didn’t go to the police, alright. And after that, some FPMT centers said that Dagri Rinpoche was saying around that the meeting was for me to apologize to him, and that I was crying and begging for his forgiveness. I can’t believe it, it’s absolutely crazy. That is a lie. So, that means Dagri Rinpoche, on top of being a pervert, he’s also a big liar because I never ever apologized. I have nothing to apologize to him, and he’s the one who should be apologizing to all women he has molested through his life. So, that was the Dalai Lama meeting, he apologized and then he lied about it, so they didn’t do anything at the end, right. And also from the FPMT, I literally got nothing, like “Oh, he’s okay, he was giving your massage out of compassion”, and that’s it, they stuck to that version.I tried to contact many people. Some people were supportive, but the institutions did absolutely nothing about it. Not only after me but before me, many girls and women – laywomen, nuns, Western, Tibetan, Indians – have been molested by Dagri Rinpoche. I don’t know in which way we have to explain this again and again. In my case, more than 10 years I’ve been saying it, more than 10 years. Many lives have been destroyed, the faith of many Dharma practitioners have been seriously harmed by this. The Dharma life of many people has been seriously affected and many of these victims still have not been able to overcome the trauma of being molested by Dagri Rinpoche, and I’m talking especially about young Western nuns, young Western nuns that I know and that other people know as well. But they still don’t have the courage to come out.So, after all this happened, it was even worse because when I spoke up, then I became the bad person, alright. When I spoke up, then I was saying, I was told that I was crazy, that I was overreacting, that I wanted to attract attention. Please, seriously, like look at me. Have you seen a picture of Dagri Rinpoche? Why would I want to attract the person, the attention of such man? Come on, seriously! And many people defended him, and still now they are defending him, which I think is absolutely insane. But, I also want to say that I understand, especially monks and nuns that were ordained by him, I understand. And please, I want to ask to the public to forgive them, and to understand them. Because you cannot imagine what it is to think that your entire life is a lie, okay. Imagine the people who have got ordained by Dagri Rinpoche. Imagine, to receive ordination in the Buddhist tradition, in the monastic tradition, it’s very important that you get them from a pure monk, a monk that has pure vows. Imagine that you have been ordained and then after years, you find out that maybe, just maybe, you didn’t even get the vows. You were never a monk or a nun, because you were never given the vows by a pure gelong [note: fully ordained monk]. That’s…I don’t know, if you’re not a Dharma practitioner or a Buddhist monk or nun, I’m not sure you can understand how terrible and traumatic this is, but this is not only about self-liberation vows, also people who took Bodhisattva vows and Tantric initiations with him. They can’t face reality, it’s just too painful. So forgive them if they defend him, it’s just too harmful to see the truth, okay.So, even now, after the incident, the versions I’ve heard from FPMT centers is that they agreed with the version of Rinpoche, that he just smiled at the woman in the airplane and then she got upset because he smiled at her. Come on, how stupid do you think we are? How stupid, seriously? How stupid do you think people all around the world are? And women that have been molested, how long you think they’re gonna put up with it? He’s already 65 years old. You have any idea how many women he has molested throughout his life, just because he gets away with it, because he’s a Rinpoche? That’s not fair. So, I just want to say to that woman that was molested in the plane by Dagri Rinpoche, thank you, thank you so much for reporting him. You have done what many, many of us didn’t do or couldn’t do, or just didn’t have the courage to. Thank you so much because you’re not a Buddhist, you’re not a Westerner, and you have never seen him before, so you have no reason you know, to have like a, to make this up. Thank you. I’m so sorry what you went through. I know what you went through, and if you need any help in the case in court against Dagri Rinpoche, please contact me. I’ll send you all the information I have. I’m not in India now, but something can be arranged if you want to. I also want to tell to Kangra police, I’ve been trying to get in touch with the journalist who wrote the articles and with Gaggal police and with Kangra police and I haven’t been able to, but if you want, here’s the copy of my statutory declarations. If these can support the case against Dagri Rinpoche, I’ll do anything that’s necessary for that.And I also want to say to other women, to all the other women that were molested by Rinpoche, that I know that you were molested by him, and you know that I know. I know that you’re watching this video, and I know that you know that you were molested, and that you didn’t say anything. You know, those of you know who I’m talking about, please. I respected your privacy, everyone has respected your privacy for 10 years, even more. Now is the time to talk. Look, now he’s come out to the public, you don’t need to feel guilty anymore. You don’t need to be ashamed anymore, ok? Speak up, do something, go make a video, make a statement, go to your Dharma center, write a letter to Lama Zopa, start a blog, write a letter to His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s Office, protest if Dagri Rinpoche’s going to your center, refuse to go, refuse to go to the Dharma center if he’s there, do something and don’t feel ashamed. Don’t think that telling the truth is going to harm the Dharma, because Dharma is looking for the truth, so there’s no way that you can hurt the Dharma if you’re telling the truth. Tell the truth, do something even if it was 15 years ago, and if it was 10 years ago like me, it doesn’t matter. It’s not too late because the harm that he’s done to you has not still gone away, okay. So, do it, do something. And I want to say something to the FPMT. What are you gonna do now? What are you gonna do now? Are you gonna let him get away with it again? How many more victims? All the suffering of all the students that have been either molested by Rinpoche or whose faith and Dharma life has been hurt because of the actions of Rinpoche, all the suffering of all those people is on you because you kept inviting him to teach in the Dharma centers even after you knew about what he did, and you didn’t believe the women. So all the suffering of all these students, of all these practitioners, of all these women, if you don’t stop him now FPMT, all that suffering is on you.

 

Jaki’s Statutory Declaration

Click HERE to download the PDF (with copiable text).

Page 1 of Ms. Jaki’s statutory declaration, lodged at Kangra Police Station and notarized in Dharamsala. Click to enlarge or click HERE to download the PDF.

Page 2 of Ms. Jaki’s statutory declaration, lodged at Kangra Police Station and notarized in Dharamsala. Click to enlarge or click HERE to download the PDF.

Page 3 of Ms. Jaki’s statutory declaration, lodged at Kangra Police Station and notarized in Dharamsala. Click to enlarge or click HERE to download the PDF.

Page 4 of Ms. Jaki’s statutory declaration, lodged at Kangra Police Station and notarized in Dharamsala. Click to enlarge or click HERE to download the PDF.

STATUTORY DECLARATION (click to expand)

All spelling and grammatical idiosyncrasies are the original author’s own I, Jakaira Perez Valdivia age 26 years D/o Mr. Juan Perez Passport No. XD549842 Spain declare the following facts: Around October 2008, during HH Dalai Lama teachings, I was staying in Tushita Meditation Center as going up and down from Thosamling was very much uncomfortable due to my back problem. As I heard that Dagri Rinpoche, also known as Pari Rinpoche, was in Dharamsala, I decided to visit him. I met him once in Italy and another time shortly after my arrival in India. After my Teacher, Geshe Jampa Gyatso, passed away in 2007 many of his students have sought advice from Dagri Rinpoche and I was advised to go to him for getting a blessing or advice for my health problem. I was diagnosed with a disk hernia at the beginning of that year and I was in a lot of pain, trying to avoid surgery at any cost. I arrived at his house behind Namgyal monastery as the end of the morning, guided by his attendant from whom I can’t recall the name. At that time I knew tibetan well enough to go to the audience without a translator. I gave Dagri Rinpoche some small present and explained my health problem. He asked questions about my life and studies. So it was lunch time and he asked me to stay for lunch and after to come with him to Dharamkot mountain in order to perform a fire puja with him. The attendant brought us meat momos and soup. As soon as we finished eating the attendant collected the dishes and then Rinpoche asked him to leave the apartment. I thought we were leaving too, but when the attendant left he asked me to lay down on the floor and take my clothes off. I asked why and he said he had to do ‘some work’ on me. I just took off my zen and dongka, and kept the nulen (undershirt) and shamtab, as I though that if he wanted to perform some kind of ritual for curing me it should only concern that part of my back. Then I sat on the floor. Dagri Rinpoche went to the little room where he keeps an altar and when he came back he had some glass container in his hands. He said it was a ‘very very holy substance’, put some in the container cap, drank from it, filled it again and then told me to drink it all at once. When I did so I noticed it was some strong alcoholic drink. After that he drank more and he kept drinking during the whole ‘session’, continuously. Then he told me again to take my clothes off and lay down. I didn’t take more clothes off but just laid down facing the ground. He started to recite some prayers and mantras while he was touching all my back and putting that alcoholic drink all over it. He said that I should loosen my shamtab as it was too high and it was covering all the lower back (which is the place where I actually had the hernia). So I loosened a bit the shamtab and as soon as I did that, he put his hands under my robes, quite down my lower back, reaching the area of my buttocks. I quickly held my shamtab tight and told him I was feeling very uncomfortable. He said ‘don’t worry it’s okay, we are brothers.’ So he started reciting more prayers and massaging and putting alcohol on my back. I’d like to remark the fact that during the whole situation he was very skillful in dissimulating and adopting a discrete attitude (reciting mantras and prayers louder) after having gone too close to my private parts. Then he squatted with each foot on one side of my body and then sat on my buttocks, pressing his body on me several times. Then he told me to turn around. He started to touch, massaging and putting alcohol in my belly and surrounding areas, trying to touch my breasts and pelvis, which he didn’t manage because I was holding my shirt tight on my breast with one hand and the shamtab with the other. Noticing this he started laughing and said ‘your a very good nun, very pure mind.’ At that point my body was completely covered in alcohol, then he told me to sit. I thought it was finished and I was about to dress up properly, but he told me to wait. I was sitting facing the wall and he was behind me, reciting mantras, etc. Suddenly he embraced me, from behind trying to touch my breasts with his hands. As I was swiftly trying to put one arm between my breast and his hands and using the other hand to hold my shamtab, I just noticed at then end that he was pushing he penis against my back. When he let go he told me to take a shower in his private toilet. As I completely smelled like alcohol and it would have been really inappropriate to go outside like that, I approached the toilet, and he gave me his personal towel to dry my body. I had a really quick shower and when I came out he was seating on the bed-like throne that is in his room. He asked me to seat next to him while he was reading some prayers, he pulled the right side of his dingwa towards him to let me seat on that side of the bed. Then he asked me to touch his right arm, he asked me to massage it. I said I didn’t know how to give massages. Then, as I didn’t do it he rubbed his arm on my hand and legs (I was seating crossed legs on the bed-throne). Then he asked me to recite some mantras and said he was going to bless my chackras, he started touching the forehead, then the throat, and as I put my arms crossed on my breast and belly, he didn’t go for the ‘lower chackras’. After that he told me to go to the other side of the room, where the chairs are, and wait. After finishing his recitation, he phoned to his attendant telling him that now it was okay to come back, but not to rush. When he arrived to the other side of the room I stood up, he came close to me and put his cheek on my neck and face and told me quietly in the ear ‘we are brothers’. I told him ‘actually we are not’. Then he went to the room where he keeps the altar, and when he came back he had in his hands a dark plastic container of which the contents were not possible to be seen from outside. Then he told me this was the inner offering, and instructed me to drink one cap of it each day and to spread it also on my low back. While reciting mantras, again he put some of it in the containers cap and drank it, then filled it up again and told me I must drink it all at once because it is the inner offering, so I did, and off course it was and alcoholic substance. He laughed and said ‘be careful ani-la you will get drunk’, and the he drank more, then he gave me the plastic containers to take home, he said he put the alcohol there because otherwise it would have been inappropriate if people sees me carrying the bottle. Then he kept drinking from the other glass container. He told me not to tell anyone about this, and not to show anyone the ‘inner offering’. The attendant came and he insisted me to go with them to Dharamkot for the fire puja, I told him that it was getting late and that I must go back to Tushita for the registration in the office. Then Rinpoche said they will give me a ride. We went out, the attendant stopped a taxi and we went up to Dharamkot. When the taxi reached Tushita’s private road, Rinpoche held my hand and put five hundred rupees in my bag. I said goodbye to him and the attendant very cordially to not let the attendant suspect that any unusual thing happened. When I arrived at Tushita it was around 3.00pm. This is what I recall.

  This is very sad news. Ms. Adelaide Foster says:

“I was told by LZR * to not talk about it ten years ago. I asked him to make sure he was always monitored and not left alone with other women. Unfortunately, he did it again on an airplane last week, and the indian medias have mentioned he was detained. Tibetans, and fpmt are silent.” * Lama Zopa Rinpoche

Some FPMT centers actually have the courage to say ‘no’ and disinvite Dagri Rinpoche from their events.

 

MESSAGES OF SUPPORT

Some of Jakaira’s friends have published their own eyewitness accounts detailing what took place after Jakaira first spoke up about the assault she suffered under the hands of Dagri Rinpoche. Their accounts corroborate with hers and describe the distress she felt after the assault. They also describe the subsequent abuse she received from people who did not believe what she said. So not only was she suffering from the trauma of being sexually assaulted by a “Rinpoche” but she also had to suffer the indignity and wearisome exercise of trying to convince people she was telling the truth. In one of the accounts, Tenzin Taklha (the Dalai Lama’s private secretary) is named as the official from the Dalai Lama’s Office who attended the meeting that Jakaira had in Namgyal Monastery, Dharamsala. The eyewitness accounts also reveal that Dagri Rinpoche assaulted an American nun who is as yet unnamed and unidentified. They clearly state that at the time, Jakaira received support from nuns like Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo. From their statements, it is evident that Dagri Rinpoche is guilty, that Jakaira was assaulted, that the Dalai Lama and FPMT did nothing about it and, much worse than that, covered it up and never brought sanctions against Dagri Rinpoche. The fact they knew and did nothing, gave Dagri Rinpoche another 10 more years to assault countless more victims.

Click to enlarge (Source: https://www.facebook.com/celia.gradin/posts/10156601211324055)

Click to enlarge (Source: https://www.facebook.com/celia.gradin/posts/10156601211324055)

 

Nun Thubten Chodron Speaks Out Against Dagri Rinpoche


Or watch on server | download video (right click & save file)

Western Buddhist teacher Thubten Chodron talks about Dagri Rinpoche in her 15-minute video. She mentions at 01:52-05:06 that she has heard of the allegations against him. Dagri Rinpoche was one of Sravasti Abbey’s spiritual advisors and also gave talks at their Dharma center. Over the last couple of days, they have removed his videos from their site. They have also removed mention of him being one of their advisors. The video was published on 10th May 2019.

Transcript (01:52 – 05:06)

“I had heard other allegations, you know a couple of years ago, about the same teacher but at that time I was only hearing a second hand [account] here, a second hand [account] there. The people who were making the allegations weren’t identified, I wasn’t told their names, I could not go talk to them, I couldn’t ask them questions. There was no investigation with a published report and so based on just that, a lack of information, there was no way I could say, yeah, you know, make a conclusion about the whole thing. I just had to leave it very open. So now, I’m really hoping that… I’m sure the police will do something but I think more than that, [it] is necessary that the one Dharma group where he [teaches], the big Dharma organization (FPMT) where he teaches a lot, I think they should do an independent investigation because for these kinds of things if you just kind of sit back and wait, then the air doesn’t get cleared up and nobody knows for sure what happened. And I think it’s better, you know, have a party that isn’t involved in this at all do an investigation and talk to the various people. And I think the women who you know have been molested should come forth, if there’s an investigation like this, and talk to the people. Maybe they don’t want to be identified by their name but they should at least speak to the investigators if there is an investigation which I sure hope there is because in these kinds of things I think you have to get reliable information because it also has happened, I think it was a couple of years ago or maybe one year ago when this whole thing exploded about another lama. I gave a whole series of talks…”

 

Adelaide Foster speaks up for her friend Jaki – Tibetan


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Adelaide Foster is speaking in Tibetan and saying that Dagri Rinpoche is not telling the truth.  

Adelaide Foster speaks up for her friend Jaki – French


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Adelaide Foster speaks up for her friend Jaki – English


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TRANSCRIPT (click to expand)

Hello, today, Dagri Rinpoche published a statement in Tibetan regarding the allegations of sexual molestation made against him. The letter was published in Tibetan only unfortunately, and in Sera Monastery in South India. For those who don’t speak Tibetan, I will give an overview of some of the points raised in that letter, in that statement. So Rinpoche talks about the two incidents he’s been involved in. The first one that happened on May 2nd 2019 on a flight from Delhi to Dharamsala and the second one is an incident that happened almost 10, I think more or less 10 years ago in India in Dharamsala. The first one from the flight involves an Indian woman, who involved the police and the police arrested Dagri Rinpoche before releasing him on bail. So first of all, the account Dagri Rinpoche gives about this incident is that during the flight he wasn’t comfortable, and he moved and this woman woke up and started saying things to him which he did not understand according to him, and because he didn’t understand and out of the kindness of his heart he smiled at her. Few lines later, he says she accused him of touching her everywhere. I wonder when Rinpoche got to understand what she said, usually, you have to understand that in these flights there are always Tibetans, and Tibetans speak Hindi because they usually have stayed in India for a long while, so I find it very unlikely that he did not understand what had happened. Nevertheless, the two accounts, a few sentences apart, seem quite different. So, the second molestation charge that he mentioned is from Jakaira’s recent video and she talks about a time, 10 years ago more or less, when she was molested by Rinpoche. At that time I was in Dharamshala, and you heard that I was a friend and am still her friend and I saw her, how distraught she was at the time, that was not faked. I have seen how she is not like that, usually. How Dagri Rinpoche is the only person with whom she had that problem, and she has never talked about any other problem of the same kind, about other people doing that to her, so that’s something maybe people should know. Dagri Rinpoche in the statement he made, he refers to her as ‘ani’, which is aunty in Tibetan, it’s how you call nuns when you are not very respectful, and I’ve hardly seen it written. Usually in written Tibetan, so when you write Tibetan and the way you speak Tibetan, it’s almost two different languages. And the way you write, when you talk about a nun, you write ‘tsunma’. I think it’s really one of the first time I’ve seen it written in this non-respectful way. He’s entitled to his opinions of course, but it pops to your mind when you see it because usually you don’t. And the first thing he says is that this ani was coming, this nun was coming, this auntie was coming with mind and body problems. She had problems of the mind, that’s literally what he’s written in the statement. That’s something that occurred to her, at some other point one of her friend was accosted by Dagri Rinpoche’s attendant ten years ago allegedly. I have no proof. This friend can’t talk about it and the attendant told her without knowing they were friends, that Jakaira was crazy, after the incident, of course. So that’s not something new, that he calls people crazy without any proof. Tibetan society is very hierarchical and what you show, and your reputation, and your face, saving face is extremely important. So he was building a negative reputation around her, and again this letter is again using the same methods to discriminate her testimony. In the more than ten years that I have known Jakaira, I’ve not seen signs of mental issues. I’m studying, I’m in grad school in Psychology, hopefully I should be able to notice if people have strong mental issues. Rinpoche also in the statement mentioned six witnesses that can testify that he’s right about what happened because they had a meeting. I don’t know how long but I was told it wasn’t like a few months I think. I’m not sure exactly what was the timeline, but quite soon after the molestation incident they had a meeting because Jakaira had talked to, had sent an affidavit of her testimony to His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s office, as well as the head of the FPMT Roger, Venerable Roger. And the second six witnesses that took part in a meeting that can testify actually include Rinpoche himself, and includes Jakaira, includes her friend, includes Chimila who was working, with working at His Holiness Dalai Lama’s Office, Private Office, as well as the attendant of Rinpoche. So, the six witnesses disagree to what Rinpoche say, I cannot say all of them because of course, Rinpoche’s attendant and Rinpoche will not disagree with themselves. Hopefully this is good because then, we will go back into the mental issue. Issue, problem, problematic. I was not at that meeting, I cannot testify. What I have to say about this is hearsay, and that it is Jakaira herself just told me then and now again that Rinpoche actually apologized to her at that meeting And then there is two other things I want to mention about that statement. The statement continues on that people that point fingers at him do that with anger and attachment, anger, hate, and attachment and they collect bad karma so Rinpoche requests, let’s say don’t collect bad karma by talking about his negativities, no, talking him bad about him. Doesn’t acknowledge he did anything wrong. This is an implied threat because he wants to shut people up, he wants to make people stop talking about him, in that way talking about the problematic here and that if they do talk they’d have very bad karma. So the statement, the public statement and by stating that he hopes everybody is happy. Basically, I don’t remember exactly the wording, but it’s again a bit different from what he has said, written before that, that he was not himself very respectful, but he hoped that people will be respectful, and will be happy and collect all positive karma by shutting up in parenthesis. Anyway, one last thing I want to say about this issue is that please be aware that the Tibetan communities, the monastic communities are very hierarchical, people on top are very powerful, and it’s not an easy thing to speak out, and very few people have done so, but we’ve heard many testimonies of things similar happening around Dagri Rinpoche. I don’t want people to be hurt in that. I was advised not to talk about it because, by some, because they threatened my position in Dharamsala, and by others because in Dharma you’re in Buddhist practice, you’re supposed to only talk about the qualities of others and your own negativities, and that’s it. But people get hurt, and it’s not okay to let people get hurt, whether it’s for a hierarchical belief or religious belief or spiritual belief, it’s not okay to hurt people and to let people get hurt. You have to take position sometimes, and thank gods, or thank science, because if we did not take position, we will let things happen. If people in the Second World War hadn’t taken a position, how many people would have died, would have been killed? Taking position is one of a human value or for human characteristics, and using our human intelligence, we can and we should be aware of what’s happening around us and not believe that people who have a big name, who are said to be so and so, can only be perfect. People have to use their human intelligence, they have to check around, to see by themselves, to try to be unbiased in these things to make up their mind, but that’s a step to be unbiased. It’s the first step toward a decision, toward a side taking, and it shouldn’t be that people just stop there and become mindless. So, please people, do look around, ask yourself why Rinpoche hasn’t been in FPMT centres in Australia for a while. Ask yourself, ask yourself why some ethical rules of the FPMT are not answered. Ask yourself, what is happening? Think by yourself, analyze situation because Dharma is about finding the truth and looking for the truth and not just accepting things and staying silent. So, thank you very much and just relax and be happy.

 

A THIRD VICTIM GOES PUBLIC

On 14th May 2019, a Korean lady by the name of Young Sun Shin went public with her experience with Dagri Rinpoche. She said she asked His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Ling Rinpoche for help. From the Dalai Lama’s Office, she was told that the Dalai Lama is very busy. From Ling Rinpoche, he commented on the incident, saying that it was very bad but no action was taken. She lived in India between 2005 and 2009 but after this incident, she returned to Korea because no one spoke up and protected her. Just like FPMT, the Dalai Lama’s Office and Ling Rinpoche chose to sweep this abuse under the rug. How many more women will Dagri Rinpoche molest and abuse before there are consequences?

Click to enlarge (Source: https://www.facebook.com/yeongseons/posts/10157134479759598)

After Ms. Shin went public with her account of being molested by Dagri Rinpoche, Tsawa Khangtsen’s predictable first reaction was to blame Dorje Shugden practitioners. This angered Ms. Shin who is not associated with practitioners of Dorje Shugden and in fact, does not even identify with the Gelug tradition. Ms. Shin responded by posting photographs of herself with Dagri Rinpoche and other documents proving that she does not practice Dorje Shugden, that she knew Dagri Rinpoche and that the details of her account are accurate i.e. she was where she said she would be when the molestation happened. That Dorje Shugden practitioners are responsible for all of this is downright illogical. The Indian woman who lodged a complaint in Gaggal Police Station is not a Dorje Shugden practitioner; Ms. Jaki and Ms. Shin are both not practitioners, and neither is the abuser Dagri Rinpoche. Neither are the Indian media who have been publicizing this case all over the globe; are they all under the so-called “unholy influence of Mara’s forces”, in Tsawa Khangtsen’s words? How insulting of Tsawa Khangtsen to assume that the Indian media are unable to fulfill their journalistic duty to report accurately and objectively. And exactly how is it relevant if someone practices Dorje Shugden or not, so as long as they are suffering the trauma of being assaulted? Tsawa Khangtsen’s blaming Dorje Shugden practitioners, instead of offering to assist the victims, is an insult to all victims of sexual abuse. It belittles their trauma, dismissing their experiences as the machinations of an unrelated group. Is this how monks behave, prioritizing their reputation and sources of income before thinking about how to alleviate the suffering of sentient beings?Instead of taking responsibility, instead of apologizing, Tsawa Khangtsen sought to shift the blame elsewhere. Ms. Shin and other victims have every right to be upset.

Tsawa Khangtsen tried to shift the blame for this incident onto practitioners of Dorje Shugden, when it is not relevant. Their accusation has only served to upset Ms. Shin who responded below. (Source: https://www.facebook.com/serajetsawa.khamtsen/posts/2266101596815643)

Click to enlarge (Source: https://www.facebook.com/yeongseons/posts/10157138231879598)

Click to enlarge (Source: https://www.facebook.com/yeongseons/posts/10157138344324598)

Dagri Rinpoche meets Ms. Shin whom he later molested (Source: https://www.facebook.com/yeongseons/posts/10157138344324598)

Dagri Rinpoche meets Ms. Shin whom he later molested (Source: https://www.facebook.com/yeongseons/posts/10157138344324598)

Ms. Shin’s documents showing she really was in India at the time of the assault (Source: https://www.facebook.com/yeongseons/posts/10157138344324598)

Ms. Shin’s documents showing she really was in India at the time of the assault (Source: https://www.facebook.com/yeongseons/posts/10157138344324598)

 

TOO LITTLE TOO LATE: FPMT FINALLY “TEMPORARILY” SUSPENDS DAGRI RINPOCHE

Nearly a week after Dagri Rinpoche was arrested for molesting an Indian lady on a Delhi-Dharamsala flight, FPMT International finally released an official statement announcing that they have suspended Dagri Rinpoche from their list of official teachers. This means that Dagri Rinpoche will no longer be allowed to teach in or visit any FPMT centres. The suspension shows that FPMT believe the allegations of the women who are speaking up against Dagri Rinpoche.

Click to enlarge (Source: https://fpmt.org/fpmt-community-news/unpublished/update-regarding-dagri-rinpoche/)

In the statement, FPMT admitted to having prior knowledge of the serious allegations against Dagri Rinpoche as far back as 2011, that the Dalai Lama’s Office were fully aware of Dagri Rinpoche’s sexual abuse, and that Dagri Rinpoche had been sternly warned to avoid similar situations in the future. FPMT also claims to have warned FPMT centres of the potential dangers of inviting Dagri Rinpoche (i.e. the dangers of Dagri Rinpoche making sexual advances on their female members and students). Given that FPMT had such foreknowledge, the big question is, why did FPMT remain quiet for so long after news of the Indian lady being molested was announced? Why didn’t FPMT give more stringent warnings to all their international members when complaints about Dagri Rinpoche began circulating again a year ago? Why was FPMT so irresponsible to not remove Dagri Rinpoche from their approved teachers list a year ago, or eight years ago? Why did FPMT try to cover up the situation for so long until now when all hell has broken loose? Shame on you FPMT for being another religious organisation that covers up sexual scandals and allows your members to be exposed to abuse by sexual predators in positions of power. FPMT will now and forever be seen as an organisation that knowingly harbours sexual predators and does nothing about it. It is unbelievably sad that so many nuns and women needed to be accosted by Dagri Rinpoche before FPMT finally decided to break their silence. FPMT should have suspended and disqualified Dagri Rinpoche a long time ago instead of sending him all over the world and allowing many more women to become victims. Dagri Rinpoche is a sexual predator of the highest degree. Now, victims and their friends are speaking up and even more victims will emerge from the woodwork. They are no longer keeping quiet. FPMT’s lame suspension of Dagri Rinpoche will not placate the public. The Dagri Rinpoche issue will not simply go away but will continue to grow and keep coming back to haunt FPMT again and again. Strong actions are what is needed now to show that FPMT are sincere and serious about making up for their mistakes. For their part in covering up Dagri Rinpoche’s sexual abuse, FPMT must issue a public apology. What Dagri Rinpoche did is a crime punishable under the law with jail time. It is high time that FPMT stop sitting on the fence to protect themselves but actively support the police investigations into Dagri Rinpoche and cooperate to the fullest extent in order to not lose even more credibility.  

LAMA ZOPA RINPOCHE’S SOLUTION TO DAGRI RINPOCHE’S CHARGES OF MOLESTATION AND SEXUAL ABUSE

Weeks after the FPMT’s silence on Dagri Rinpoche’s molestation charges, Lama Zopa Rinpoche finally addressed the issue, in what became a ‘teaching’. In fact, Lama Zopa only touched lightly on the Dagri issue before his talk meandered to other topics inviting listeners to forget about Dagri Rinpoche’s offences. Essentially, Lama Zopa’s explanation is that the women who were abused by Dagri Rinpoche should view him as a deity because Dagri had a couple of dreams that he went to Gaden Heaven and was in fact an extraordinary being. No, you didn’t hear it wrong. To be sure, Lama Zopa advised that because Dagri Rinpoche had dreams that he, Dagri, was extraordinary, the women should just let him do whatever he likes to them. If Lama Zopa’s view is to be accepted, then we can all do away with the law, monastic rules, vows and everything that has kept the practice of Buddhism on the straight and narrow. Everyone who commits a crime should not be required to be brought to justice, provided the perpetrator has had a couple of dreams of being a deity. According to Lama Zopa, Dagri Rinpoche’s victims are to accept this explanation and deal with the crime inflicted upon them happily. This is precisely the kind of medieval thinking, used to justify slavery and serfdom. Having said all that, this explanation is convenient because if all Dagri Rinpoche’s victims were to behold him in this ‘pure view,’ then Lama Zopa and the FPMT would have no need to deal with a very thorny issue and the inconvenient fact that they have been caught covering up for him. On his part, Dagri Rinpoche would be completely unshackled and it is frightening to think what he would do with this unrestricted immunity.

Click to enlarge (Source: https://fpmt.org/lama-zopa-rinpoche-news-and-advice/advice-from-lama-zopa-rinpoche/lama-zopa-rinpoches-advice-to-students-of-dagri-rinpoche/)

Lama Zopa had a choice, to take the bull by the horns and deal with a dangerous predator’s exploits in a logical and conventional way so that everyone can see that the FPMT does not condone misconducts by members of it’s teaching fraternity, or throw the burden back on the victims and ask them to deal with it. If indeed Dagri Rinpoche is special and extraordinary it would have been easier for him to act responsibly and lead more people to the dharma and to increase the faith of Buddhist aspirants. Why ask ordinary people to think in extraordinary ways when supposedly extraordinary lamas cannot abide by even common codes of decency? However special the explanation sounds, the fact remains that the victims are human beings and experience sufferings as ordinary people do. To throw the burden back to them is to add to their suffering. If we are to accept Lama Zopa’s reasoning, then we should now inform all future victims of Dagri Rinpoche to start seeing him as an extraordinary being and to welcome being molested and touched inappropriately. Everyone, and there will be a lot of them, should be informed ahead of time, that they should just expect Dagri to sexually assault them, use them however he likes and it is their responsibility to deal with this attack and feel “blessed”.Victims of Dagri Rinpoche’s offences should be told now not to waste time and emotional energy trying to get justice in future. Imagine if we apply this explanation to all aspects of life, there would be no need for anyone to behave at all and all we would need as we like is to have dreams.  

THE PUBLIC REACTS

Not everyone is as enamored with Lama Zopa’s statement as FPMT would have you believe. Members of the public have already gone onto his Facebook Fanpage to voice their disagreement and disapproval. Most of them find the statement to be totally out of touch, disregarding the victims’ experiences and trying to whitewash the situation. They can see beyond the nice Dharma words, that Lama Zopa is trying to distract the public from the real issue – that his organization, FPMT, is complicit in the cover-up of Dagri Rinpoche’s sexual abuse. The result? The statement ends up excusing Dagri Rinpoche’s behavior, and telling the victims that it is their fault they do not have ‘pure view’. But the question is, if there was nothing to be guilty of, why even provide advice to anyone on how to maintain faith in Dagri Rinpoche? He has to provide advice because there are people to provide advice to, and those people are his victims.

Matthew Remski’s powerful posting analyzing the shortcomings of Lama Zopa’s statement, elicited responses from his friends that were overwhelmingly negative and critical of Lama Zopa’s reaction (Source: https://www.facebook.com/matthew.remski/posts/10161853555645602)

Pam Rubin’s powerful posting analyzing the shortcomings of Tsawa Khangtsen and Dagri Rinpoche’s statements, elicited responses from her friends that were overwhelmingly negative and critical of their reaction (Source: https://www.facebook.com/pam.rubin.7/posts/10161729794825511)

Pema Sarah Cash makes it clear that FPMT has been covering up sexual molestation and abuse since the 1980s (Source: https://www.facebook.com/sean.jones.54772/posts/10216392866347252)

 

[TRICYCLE] Nuns Push for Investigation into Molestation Allegations against Teacher Dagri Rinpoche

Click to enlarge (Source: https://tricycle.org/trikedaily/dagri-rinpoche-abuse/)

This is the first time Tricycle, a prominent Buddhist publication, has published criticism of Lama Zopa. The first criticism came in the form of a powerful letter written by a group of prominent nuns addressed directly to FPMT and calling for an independent investigation. This letter is significant not only because of the nuns’ reputations but because it mentions there are more women who were molested by Dagri Rinpoche who are still anonymous. Being that these nuns already dare to speak up, if an independent investigation begins, it is likely that they will encourage the anonymous victims to come forward and aid in the investigation. The reality is that these nuns would not compose an open letter to FPMT if they were not absolutely surethat Dagri Rinpoche is guilty of his crimes; they would not lend their names to a campaign or movement that they did not have evidence or a basis for. They also would not call for an independent investigation if they were not already sure of the outcome.

The nuns’ open letter to FPMT. Click to enlarge.

The nuns’ open letter to FPMT. Click to enlarge.

 

JAKAIRA REPLIES

Tricycle also received a statement from Jakaira Perez Valdivia which they published. In her scathing reply, she systematically refutes and criticizes Dagri Rinpoche’s statement, FPMT’s statement and Lama Zopa’s response. In particular, she says that Lama Zopa’s response is an attempt to use karma and religion to excuse Dagri Rinpoche’s crimes. Elsewhere, Lama Zopa’s response has also been met with widespread derision for being tone deaf, out of touch and lacking in compassion or sympathy for the victims. It is time for FPMT to do more, and to agree to an independent investigation or it will appear as though they are once again attempting to conceal the truth and deceive the public. Unless FPMT comes clean and are honest with what really happened, the Dagri molestation case will forever be a stain on Lama Zopa’s and FPMT’s reputations since they have spent the past decade covering it up.

Click to enlarge (Source: https://tricycle.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Response-statement.pdf)

Click to enlarge (Source: https://tricycle.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Response-statement.pdf)

 

BURNING NEWS: How to protect yourself from lama murta?

Ordinary Tibetans are now coming forward to offer advice to non-Tibetans on how they can protect themselves against sexual abuse and how they can prevent it from happening. This is unlike Lama Zopa and FPMT who expose vulnerable students to abusive characters like Dagri Rinpoche, by continuing to promote them as a valid source of teachings. Furthermore, FPMT and Lama Zopa have also chosen to sweep the issue of sexual abuse under the rug, and advise victims how to view the abuse AFTER they have experienced it. Clearly ordinary Tibetans like Mila Rangzen understand that prevention better than cure. It is precisely because of organizations like the FPMT that these days, students have to be warned against abusive lamas. It is precisely because of organizations like FPMT that these days, students have to be taught how to force their teachers to tell the truth. If FPMT had a culture of transparency, teachers like Dagri Rinpoche would not be allowed to get away with their abuse.


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TRANSCRIPT (click to expand)

Hi, Welcome to Tibet Star. Today, the topic I have is on how to fight lama molestation. This video is especially for non-Tibetans who face this kind of problem. First thing first, never enter into a room alone with a lama, or Tulku or Rinpoche. It’s a big no-no, no. If you have to be in a room with a lama, make sure there’s a witness. Two, any time a molestation occurs, make sure you have a photo or an audio, or the best would be a video to prove your claims and also keep a diary or a journal. Write everything down with dates, timing, everything. Now, number five, make sure you go and blog about it, and then go to Youtube and talk about it, and share it on Facebook, and take the molesting lama to the media and challenge, now, this is very important, challenge him to do all of the following. Number one, challenge him, challenge him to make a statement, a press statement, a written statement. Two, challenge him to come to YouTube and defend himself. Then challenge him to do a press conference, not just a written statement where you cannot see his face and facial expression, and body language. These are very important to get some sense of whether the person is telling the truth, when people could ask questions and find out what really happened. And then challenge him to go through a lie-detector test. Now, these two are somewhat traditional. Nevertheless, they are very powerful in the Tibetan world. Challenge him to swear upon his root guru and other high Lamas that he respects. Challenge him to swear upon their lives that his claims are true, that he is telling the truth. For those non-Tibetans, this will freak out most of the Tibetans, including lamas, Tulkus and Rinpoches. When you challenge them to swear upon their root guru. Because their fear of hell is real, 18 realms of hell, to them is real, and you talk about Vajra Hell, it will scare the shit out of them. 99% of them will not be able to swear upon their root guru, and that can give you an idea whether the person is telling the truth or not. If he’s innocent, he shouldn’t have any problem in swearing upon his root guru. But if he’s guilty, 99% of the time he will not do it. 99% of the lamas, Tulkus, Rinpoches will not do it if they are guilty, because their fear of hell is real. Then, challenge him to meet you at Nechung and Palden Lhamo temple in Dharamsala. It could be done anywhere else where you have a statue of Nechung and Palden Lhamo, but do it in Dharamsala. This is symbolic, this is far more powerful. Challenge him to come, and both of you will swear before Nechung, the oracle Nechung and Palden Lhamo. This will again freak out the lama, Rinpoche, Tulku, if he’s guilty because their fear of the hell is very real. What they fear is one, the belief is that as soon as you go to, go before the Nechung and oracle is claiming to be telling the truth. So whoever is guilty, whoever lies, what happens, the belief is that within a month or so, the one who is guilty, the one who is lying will throw up blood and die. This is one fear they have. Two, while they are dead, they’re afraid that they will be reborn in hell, one of the 18 hells, or Vajra Hell. Now, what kind of signs will show if the person, the guilty person is lying is that a misfortune will strike him in the next 30 days, or sometimes 90 days, max one year. Either he could lose his limbs in an accident, or he catches some terminal disease, or he dies. Now, this fear is real, so it’s pointers. Now, when you go about it, to go about it in an ascending order, not in a descending order because that will destroy the climax, because there will be no climax at all. And so, take your time. It could be a week between each move that you take, or sometimes it could be between a couple of days between each move that you make. So make your move accordingly. Don’t throw all the 15 moves that I’m talking about on his face in a single day. Don’t do that. One at a time and build up momentum, and finally come down to Nechung and oracle, and that will scare the shit out of the lama, trust me. Now, what do you do after that? Usually when Tibetans have this kind of problems or similar problems, they take it to Nechung and Palden Lhamo, and it gets decided right there and they do not go to the court. Now, in this case, take him to the police, hire a lawyer and challenge him in the court. I know most of the points that I raised here are pretty obvious to many of the women who go through molestation, but as an insider and someone who belongs to the inner core once, these swearing in, challenging him to swear upon his root guru, and meeting at Nechung and Palden Lhamo to decide the outcome, these are unbelievably powerful. So use them. Basically what you do at the temple is you swear, you prostrate, probably three times before the statue of Nechung and oracle, and swear that you are, both of you will swear that you’re telling the truth, and whoever lies, whoever is guilty should meet with an unfortunate incident anytime soon. So, that could be losing a limb in an accident or could be an actual death, and then you part from there. Now everything is decided by the Nechung Oracle. That’s the belief system, so exploit it, of course, for your good purpose.

 

The FPMT’s second statement on Dagri Rinpoche’s exposé shows bad intent

Just over a week after the FPMT’s initial statement regarding Dagri Rinpoche’s molestation charges, the FPMT has come up with a second statement. Firstly, it should be noted that this second FPMT statement would not have been necessary if the FPMT had been sincere in addressing the Dagri problem from the start. Clearly, the FPMT tried to sidestep taking responsibility for its senior teacher’s abuses of innocent victims, and that sparked a huge public outcry making this second statement necessary. In its first statement, the FPMT did not even acknowledge the pain and sufferings of Dagri’s victims, which it now does after considerable arm-twisting and pressure from the public. If anyone is wondering if the FPMT is sincere about finding a proper remedy for Dagri’s victims, they should have the answer now. The FPMT now claims that it understands how difficult it has been for the victims to speak out publicly. Again if this were true, the FPMT would have provided a safe platform for Dagri’s victims to surface confidentlyand facilitated investigations by now. This was in fact what senior nuns like Jetsunma Tenzin Palmo called for, but to date apart from lip service, this has not happened.

Click to enlarge (Source: https://fpmt.org/fpmt-community-news/statement/further-update-regarding-dagri-rinpoche/)

After a casual and almost perfunctory mention of the feelings of Dagri’s victims, the FPMT spends the bulk of its second statement explaining its Ethical Policy as if to say that its commitment ends there and beyond that, it does not owe a duty of care to anyonewho comes to the FPMT for the dharma, nor is it truly interested in preserving the Mahayana tradition. A number of points need to be highlighted. This is the FPMT in the raw. Have a good look.

POINTS (click to expand)

  1. The FPMT acknowledged that the Office of the Dalai Lama notified it of Dagri’s sexual assault against Jakaira Perez Valdivia in 2011. The fact the Jakaira Perez had to lodge a complaint with the Dalai Lama’s office is proof that she could not get anyone in FPMT to take her seriously and therefore had to resort to seeking help elsewhere. This culture remains seeing how weeks after news of Dagri’s sexual abuses broke, the FPMT is still dodging blame and toying with semantics.
  2. The FPMT had the audacity to state that the assault on Jakaira Perez did not take place at an FPMT centre, and it implies that because of that, they do not have to take any responsibility. This is a shocking statement because it reveals the FPMT’s true character, not whether the organization and its people are doing the right thing but how it can escape liability. The fact that the assault was conducted by one of its senior teaching staff did not matter to the FPMT. In other words, it doesn’t matter what Dagri does and who he harms. The FPMT is prepared to ignore all that so long as it can escape liability and this is supposed to a centre that preserves the teachings of the Buddha? This is not an organization that is socially responsible, and its behaviour is more akin to the mafia than an organization that claims to uphold the Buddha’s teachings.
  3. In the FPMT’s second statement, it also acknowledged that it was quite happy to shrug responsibility of its staff and expect someone else (in this case, the Dalai Lama’s office) to clean up after it. Presumably the weight of the Dalai Lama’s office come in handy to sweep the issue under the rug. What is critical is the FPMT’s acknowledgement that it did not conduct its own investigation into complaints against Dagri. This is important to note because it goes to show that the FPMT is not seeking for truth and facts to be revealed. It is not interested in protecting victims. It is not interested in rectifying flaws in its system and to make sure that further damage to innocent people are avoided and those who have been harmed receive the help they need.
  4. We can also safely gather that the FPMT knew about Dagri’s predatorial ways, but continued to let him be on the prowl. The FPMT shows that it is not truly interested in what Dagri does, nor is it truly interested in the wellbeing of its regional centres. All it is interested in is to protect itself and hence all the FPMT did was to ‘remind’ its regional and national coordinators of complaints against Dagri but at the same time, promoting him as a credible teacher. We also see how Lama Zopa refers to Dagri as a holy being. Therefore the FPMT’s warnings are hollow and put in place for exactly situations like this so they can avoid culpability. In the FPMT’s second statement, it also confirmed that Jakaira Perez’s matter was still not dealt with adequately in 2012. A number of things become clear – the FPMT had no intentions of getting to the bottom of the Jakaira Perez incident. It is also clear that the FPMT must have continued to receive complaints about Dagri, which is why it became necessary to issue reminders to its regional and national coordinators in 2018. Why this 2018 reminder was necessary is suspicious. The pattern of serial sex offenders is almost all similar. They are habitual offenders and will continue to assault women so long as they are shielded and protected like the FPMT has been protecting Dagri. We know for sure that Dagri abused Jajaira Perez in 2011. We know of a 2013 case, and we know that FPMT felt it necessary to remind its regional and national coordinators about Dagri in 2018 and we know that Dagri molested a woman on a plane in 2019. The way Dagri brazenly attacked a woman on a plane in public indicates that he is unafraid and already out of control, thanks to the FPMT’s protection all these years that have emboldened him.
  5. The FPMT’s second statement also makes it very clear that they will not allow an independent investigation. The FPMT is awaiting results of the Indian investigation. In other words, the FPMT is waiting to see if they can get away with liability. The investigation by the Indian police will not cover Jakaira Perez’s case or any cases of Dagri’s abuses in the past. For all intents and purposes, this is history to the FPMT and something they have managed to get away with. As to the “professional assistance” the FPMT alluded to, it will not be a stretch to guess that experts have been engaged to spin the FPMT’s reputation out of the dirt and also the lawyers are ready to defend FPMT. Never mind if people continue to be hurt.

 

Lama Zopa’s attempts to wriggle the FPMT out of the Dagri mess is nothing but a cheap trick

In an orchestrated move, Lama Zopa the head of the organization issued a second statement on the Dagri Rinpoche scandal. This took place on the same day as the FPMT’s second statement on the same issue. Characteristic of spin doctors at work Lama Zopa’s first statement was, in essence, telling Dagri’s victims to rejoice that they were sexually abused by a ‘holy being’ by virtue of Dagri’s self-declaration and Lama Zopa’s endorsement. It would have been difficult for Lama Zopa to change his story after such a bold claim and so in his second statement, Lama Zopa launched into a series of stories, which infer Dagri to be on par with the Buddha Shakyamuni, the Mahasiddha Asanga and the great Getsul Tsembulwa. This itself is designed to silence Dagri’s critics and victims by continuing to imply that they are persecuting a holy being. But in his second statement Lama Zopa goes further and now directly tells victims and Dagri’s accusers that they have to subdue their own mind. Basically, it is repeat of Lama Zopa’s first statement that is, Dagri is holy being and although he has harmed innocent women, it is the victims who have to subdue their own minds rather than point out the crime and the criminal. Lama Zopa preaches monastic practices that forbid anyone from retaliating to harm inflicted upon them but as to why he would ask lay people to follow monastic rules when monks like Dagri do not have to abide by his vows, is a complete mystery. If anything this reeks of trickery.

Click to enlarge (Source: https://fpmt.org/lama-zopa-rinpoche-news-and-advice/advice-from-lama-zopa-rinpoche/lama-zopa-rinpoches-additional-advice-to-students-of-dagri-rinpoche-2/)

To insult victims and Dagri’s critics, Lama Zopa insists that because Dagri’s victims and critics are not enlightened, they are not entitled to investigate Dagri. According to Lama Zopa, Dagri is enlightened and therefore he is exempted from having to obey the laws of the land and observe common standards of ethics. Lama Zopa doesn’t spell it out but the assumption is that he is also enlightened and therefore he knows better about Dagri than anyone else. In Lama Zopa’s world so long as one declares himself to be an enlightened being, he is above the law. In what is no longer a surprise, Lama Zopa then brought in the Dorje Shugden issue with his own version of Tibetan Buddhist history. Over the past weeks as news of Dagri’s sexual exploits became public, FPMT personnel have attempted to blame Dorje Shugden for the mess the FPMT has dug itself into, but many people saw through the ruse. But right here, we see how mundane a trick Lama Zopa has had to resort to, attempting such a cheap sleight of hand more expected of suburban circus acts than of a supposed high lama, which is to distract attention away from Dagri’s crimes and the FPMT’s complicity by reigniting an old debate about the Dalai Lama’s Dorje Shugden controversy. It would have been easy enough for Lama Zopa to instruct for an independent investigation to be commissioned. That would have shown good faith and integrity. But instead, Lama Zopa launches into a malformation of facts and issues that basically says that Dagri’s victims have no rights because Dagri is a Buddha and can do as he pleases and Lama Zopa another Buddha endorses his crimes. In Lama Zopa’s world, there is no need to obey laws. When in trouble, blame a deity. Interestingly Lama Zopa fails to explain how a ‘common ghost’ that Dorje Shugden is supposed to be, managed to get Dagri supposedly a Buddha to commit depraved sexual acts on victims, none of whom have any connection with Dorje Shugden. Both Lama Zopa and the FPMT have now had weeks to take proper remedial actions regarding the Dagri scandal. But with this second statement, it is clear the truth is not going to see the light of day if the FPMT and Lama Zopa can help it. And yet they say Dorje Shugden is destroying the dharma.  

Dagri Rinpoche is charged!

The State of Himachal Pradesh will be prosecuting Dagri Rinpoche (Dhagri Rinpoche Thuptein Jungchup). They have named him as a defendant, charging him under Indian Penal Code Section 354A for Sexual Harassment and Punishment for Sexual Harassment. The offences are listed as follows:

  1. Sexual harassment of the nature of unwelcome physical contact and advances or a demand or request for sexual favours or showing pornography which is punishable with rigorous imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years, or with fine, or with both.
  2. Sexual harassment of the nature of making sexually coloured remark which is punishable by imprisonment for a term which may extend to one year, or with fine, or with both.

The first hearing was on 23 May and the next hearing is scheduled for 12 June. The case details can be viewed by the public via India’s ecourt services (https://services.ecourts.gov.in/ecourtindia_v6/) by searching for the case or CNR number (HPKA120015502019).

Dagri Rinpoche’s criminal case details can be accessed by the public via India’s ecourt services. Click to enlarge.

On social media, news that Dagri Rinpoche is being charged with sexual offences has been met with positive response. FPMT should take heed that strong, decisive action against sexual offenders is always well-received by the public, and covering up (as they are doing now) is not only deeply unpopular but morally and ethically wrong. Click to enlarge.

Details regarding Dagri Rinpoche’s charge. He is being charged under Indian Penal Code Section 354A for Sexual Harassment and Punishment for Sexual Harassment.

 

Update on Dagri’s Case

Dagri Rinpoche’s matter is up for hearing on 12th June 2019 (tuesday). This is following the Indian Police laying formal charges on Dagri under the Indian Penal Code 354A. It was learned that Dagri’s lawyers sought leave of the court to conduct the hearing ‘in camera’ meaning to say that the hearing would not be open to the public. Obviously Dagri and the FPMT are trying to minimize publicity surrounding the case and hearing.Dagri’s case has been classified a high profile case due to his connection to the Office of the Dalai Lama and Indian news media are keeping a close watch on proceedings.  

Dagri Rinpoche stalls court hearing, case adjourned

Dagri Rinpoche’s case was heard in court today (12th June 2019). The hearing, which was scheduled for 10am (North Indian time), was delayed until later in the day. Dagri Rinpoche has been charged by the Indian Police under the Indian Penal Code 354A for Sexual Harassment and Punishment for Sexual Harassment after he was arrested on 3rd May 2019 for molesting a woman on board an Air India flight from Delhi. The delay in the court hearing was due to Dagri’s transparent attempts to stall.Amongst other spurious reasons, Dagri insisted that he should have his own Hindi translator, stating that it was necessary for him to defend himself adequately.

Dagri Rinpoche’s next hearing is scheduled for 18th July 2019, over one month away. That should give him enough time to prepare for such a serious hearing.

Evidently, that was a ploy to delay the proceedings as Dagri is well-known to be fluent in Hindi, having lived in India for decades. Dagri could also have prepared for the case beforehand, either informing the court ahead of time or bringing his own translator. After all, it is not like the hearing was scheduled at the last minute, with no time for him to prepare beforehand. The fact Dagri did not take the court seriously and adequately prepare for his hearing by bringing his own translator, was nothing more than a boldfaced attempt at manipulating the Indian courts. Dagri Rinpoche clearly disrespects the Indian justice system, alongside his total lack of respect for women’s rights. His are not the actions of someone who would be able to prove their innocence in court, where he would be able to get the charges against him dismissed. At the end of the day’s shenanigans, Dagri Rinpoche’s case had to be adjourned, with the next hearing scheduled for 18th July 2019. Over one month away, that should give Dagri enough time to prepare his own translator. Dagri Rinpoche has tried very hard to keep the public out of his court hearing, presumably to keep the media away from reporting more news of his crime but it has failed. There are many interested parties, from women’s equality groups to monastic communities and Tibetans-in-exile around the world. Everyone is now watching Dagri Rinpoche’s case to see that justice is served. 

Mila Rangzen released his video on Dagri case


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Well-known Tibetan activist and commentator Mila Rangzen, who is based in New York City, USA recently published this video updating Tibetans on the latest news related to Dagri Rinpoche’s court hearing. It is a strong indication that Tibetans remain very interested in the case and will continue to observe its proceedings, outcome and FPMT’s reaction. FPMT should have monitored Dagri Rinpoche when they first learned about it over a decade ago, and they should have immediately stopped promoting him once allegatons of sexual abuse came to light. If they were the responsible organization that they pretend to be, they would have distanced themselves and disassociated from him, and advised their students not to go for teachings with him or create a connection with him. Instead, FPMT did none of that, thereby exposing potentially hundreds of womento this sexual predator. The truth is that FPMT harbored and promoted a sexual predator for over a decade and now everybody knows.  

Dagri Victim Jakaira’s exclusive exposé to Tibet Star


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Recently, Tibetan alternative news media contacted Jakaira Perez Valdivia, the sexual assault victim of Dagri Rinpoche and in a tell-all letter, she exposes the emotional difficulties that she has suffered as a result from her standing up to the sexual abuse from Dagri Rinpoche. Jakaira, who signed off as Jaki, gives an emotional account of how she lost everything, with all her years spent studying to be proficient in the Tibetan language wasted when she got blacklisted by the FPMT, thus losing her career as a translator. She also lost her position in the nunnery, her teachers, friends and worst, her self-esteem. The letter also repeats her earlier accounts of her knowing of other sexual assault victims and that the FPMT has been continuosly covering up for Dagri Rinpoche.

Transcript of Jakaira’s letter

Dear Tibet Star, As I mention in the video description, I didn’t enable the comments because I am tired of hearing people defending him all these years and I’m just not putting up with this nonsense anymore, I have already gone through all this before and it wasn’t easy. I don’t have the physical time or the emotional space and energy to deal with people who want to shame me again and again. There’s enough harm already and exposing myself like this was already a very big step. I need to protect my emotional stability and carry on with my own life, this issue is very absorbing, for the first three weeks after the news, I didn’t even have the time to do normal tasks of my daily life. I need lots of energy at my work, I need to concentrate, even kind comments stir up my emotions a lot. You must understand that that person ruined my life. Because of the slander I lost everything, I couldn’t work as a translator in the FPMT centers after all those years of studying Tibetan. I could not stay in the nunnery, my abbess didn’t support me, and betrayed me by presenting her apologies to him, like if I was an embarrassment. I didn’t have much money and I finally had to give back my vows to get a normal job in the west, also, because I couldn’t see myself anymore as a representative of a system that had failed me. I lost friends, teachers, and many of the best years of my life. I became an outcast, my self-esteem was destroyed and I’m still a bit damaged. Even though I’ve rebuilt my life from scratch, it wasn’t easy. I’m lucky to have a new life now, but most victims are still too traumatized to speak up. From the other two victims I know of, one has completely shut down and disappeared, and the other one has been working on cancelling his teachings here and there (Australia and New Zealand) for years, but not publicly. I guess they saw what happened to me at the time and couldn’t handle it. I know a total of 6 concrete victims, 5 of which I know personally, but the trauma is too deep, they won’t expose themselves like I’ve done. That is why the nuns from the petition have requested a private investigation, so that victims can speak up anonymously and have their identity protected. I guess my friend Adelaide has a similar feeling, she was the only nun at IBD with 30 monks in her class for almost 13 years. She was going to be the second geshema after Kelsang Wangmo, but she had to quit. She was abused multiple times by monks, almost raped once, good she knew martial arts. Yours, Jaki

 

Nuns send second appeal letter urging FPMT to conduct an investigation

In an update posted on Change.org’s petition Call for investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct by Dagri Rinpoche, a second letter was sent to FMPT’s CEO Ven. Roger Kunsang and the FPMT board calling the FPMT to open an impartial investigation of sexual abuse by Dagri Rinpoche in FPMT centers.

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The senior nuns who started the petition wrote in the update that they “have heard of other women with stories to report, so it is clear that there is a need for third-party professional persons who are experienced in such procedures, and with whom these women can share their experiences anonymously.” The letter to the FPMT’s CEO and board was ended with them saying, “the Buddhist sangha is entrusted by the Buddha to safeguard the Dharma, and we would be remiss in our duty if we did not continue to call on the FPMT board to take immediate steps to protect the Dharma, restore people’s trust in Tibetan Buddhism, and behave with the compassion and ethical integritythat the world expects of the Buddhadharma. Nothing short of an independent investigation will be sufficient to do that at this point.” The petition has nearly 3,000 signatures, but since the FPMT’s second update on Dagri Rinpoche on 24th May, there is no news or action announced by the FPMT on what they will do to protect the safety and dignity of women.  

Dagri stalls court proceedings again today by asking for another adjournment

Dagri Rinpoche appeared in the Kangra Court No. 2 again today (18th July 2019) supposedly to defend himself against Indian Police’s charges for Sexual Harassment and Punishment for Sexual Harassment (Indian Penal Code 354A).

Click to enlarge

This case was first listed to be heard on 12th June 2019 and then again on 18th July 2019 after Dagri feigned not to understand Hindi and English and begged to have a translator. Clearly that was just a ruse because for years the FPMT has facilitated Dagri’s travels to FPMT centres worldwide to teach in English. He is also well known in Dharamsala to be able to converse in Hindi. Today, Dagri’s court hearing was stalled again when it became a problem that the Prosecutor did not bring along a translator. The case was made that both parties – Dagri’s side and the Prosecutor’s side – should each have a translator to avoid any mistranslation. Why this was not raised previously is dubious. In any case, Dagri’s lawyer Mr Neraj Mehra was instructed to agree to the postponement. The next hearing is now set for 26th August 2019. This itself shows that Dagri is not confident of his own innocence.More information will be posted here in due course so stay tuned.  

FPMT Board says YES to third party investigation into sex harassment allegations, Lama Zopa (still) says NO

Inside sources within FPMT have revealed that the FPMT board at their recent Board meeting had resolved in favor of conducting independent third party investigations into Dagri Rinpoche’s sexual abuse allegations. Insiders also say that FPMT’s CEO Ven. Roger Kunsang defied the FPMT’s Board resolution and approached Lama Zopa, who is the organization’s spiritual head, for a mo(dice) divination.

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Lama Zopa’s mo divination showed that the third party investigation would be “VERY BAD” for FPMT and because of it, the FPMT CEO defied the Board’s decision and vetoed the investigation. What it really means by Lama Zopa’s mo divination is that Dagri Rinpoche IS guilty of sexual harassment which the third party investigation would reveal and confirm, and that is why the investigation would be very bad for FPMT. As a leading Buddhist organization with centers around the world, FPMT has a moral responsibility to keep the public and their members safe and therefore FPMT should not continue to cover up cases of sexual harassment and protect FPMT teachers who abuse their positions. FPMT CEO and Lama Zopa’s decision to withhold a third party investigation is a decision that will allow FPMT teachers who are sex predators to continue, putting FPMT’s female members and the public in danger of more sexual harassment.

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129 total comments on this postSubmit yours
  1. Lama Zopa’s advice has made a lot of people lose faith in him regarding Dagri Rinpoche’s molestation victims.

  2. It’s pathetic that FPMT are trying to cover up the truth by pressuring people to shut down their Facebook groups. What’s wrong with people having good, open and honest discussions about something that HAS to be talked about? The culture of silence that they enforced allowed Dagri Rinpoche to keep abusing more people over 10 years, and now they’re doing it again. FPMT really hasn’t learned their lesson. Or did they pressure the group to shut down because there is something they want to hide so FPMT would rather stop the discussions now, just in case something is inadvertently revealed?

    Looks like there’s no freedom of speech in FPMT. Looks like FPMT don’t care about justice for the Dagri’s victims. Looks like FPMT only care about their financial bottomline. How ‘Buddhist’.

    Under Pressure

  3. Lhungtok Choekhorling has updated their website with announcement of Dagri Rinpoche being suspended from FPMT

    Lhungtok Choekhorling DR Announcement

  4. According to this senior student of FPMT, there are still traces of Dorje Shugden within FPMT and he says Lama Zopa Rinpoche is just like Geshe Kelsang Gyatso. The ban has really messed things up. No one is good enough because everyone has a Shugden history 🤦

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  5. I wonder what is the situation with the Dagri Rinpoche’s sex scandal now. When is his next hearing? Is he going to play games again avoiding to go to court? I don’t think this time he will be able to get away by associating himself with the Dalai Lama.

    In the beginning FPMT still wants to protect Dagri Rinpoche by not saying anything. Later, Lama Zopa releases a statement on the suspension of Dagri Rinpoche. However, it was quite disappointing to read that Lama Zopa did not think Dagri Rinpoche is doing something against the law.

    Lama Zopa said the students don’t have the karma to see the compassion of Dagri Rinpoche. It was out of compassion that Dagri Rinpoche touched or molested the student, it was a form of blessings. This sounds really ridiculous. We are living in a modern world, the method used by a skilful teacher should comply with what the right conduct should be in the modern world.

    • I have read that statement before too. It was extremely disappointing to me. It is very obvious that the so-called method used by Dagri Rinpoche is not acceptable or is not the right one! If it is the correct method, Ms Jaki would still be a nun and she will not be releasing a video telling everyone about Dagri Rinpoche’s crime.

      If the so-called method is to bless the students, why was he using this method on an Indian lady who is not even his student? This shows that he intentionally wanted to abused women, not out of spiritual reason. I don’t really think Dagri Rinpoche is attained in any way as explained by Lama Zopa.

      If Dagri Rinpoche is a highly attained master, he would have some highly attained students as well and he would have made a lot of positive impact in people’s life. But until today, no one has said something positive about him with examples to support the statements. Dagri Rinpoche has to be brought to justice, this is for sure.

  6. I do believe that some high lamas do have tantric practices, but it doesn’t mean they can simply apply on anybody else. Students who don’t know anything about tantric is one reason of the caused. Another point is the lama who applies such practice on them, should either get them informed before starts or suggest another way like doing full body prostration retreats for 10K or 1M etc.
    Well, milk already spilt there nothing can be said. So, let karma do the work.

  7. Why tibetan buddhism always in wrong limelight? I feel that degeneration is much faster and worst than I was taught. Cta always shaking legs and not do anything to help. If it is true India must take appropriate action so that it is made known to other people and it won’t repeat. We must never defend sexual abusers. We must stand up for the innocent.

  8. Why does the Dalai Lama and CTA not take action on Dagri Rinpoche? He should be disrobed and be kicked out of his dharma centre. Such acts of a sexual nature by an ordained monk should not be condoned whether the victim is consensual or not. 

  9. What is going on here? Why lately there are so many cases of Lamas being accused of sexual abuse? Why were there no actions being taken to them? Is it to show to the world that this action is right to do? Please re-think. Whatever that is happening now is not making any sense at all.

  10. Reading this have tarnished my trust and faith in the monastic order. How is it possible that the Dalai Lama says nothing of all these “close to him” monks who operates on extreme sexual misconduct?

    Could politics and money be of such great importance to the office of the Dalai Lama and FPMT to make illogical excuses to the excessive molestation actions of Dagri Rinpoche and still expose his presence to many students.

    It is karma coming back due to the discrimination and ban against Dorje Shugden devotees. Karma will be the judge of all actions and results.

  11. This kind of monk really disgrace the whole Tibetan Buddhism. They should not stay in the Sangha community, not even stay in Buddhism. Yet, CTA is doing nothing about this. Because they are busy finding money to load in their deep pockets! They’re busy doing other nonsense like banning Dorje Shugden practice, but neglect this issue which is really bringing big disgrace to Tibetan and even Tibetan Buddhism. What a great leadership!

  12. This is exemplary evil deeds done by the ever increasing notorious CTA supported wings. No actions been done despite so many declarations and accusations. It’s blatant that CTA is at the helm of things, condemning those right to be wrong while the wrongs are right. It’s not surprising they are still looking for their ever waning hope of reclaiming Tibet.

  13. I agreed on what Ms Jaki said in the video that “Don’t think that telling truth is going to harm the Dharma”. This is because Dagri Rinpoche’s behavior was being mentioned as a compassionate action. This lead to people misunderstand what is compassion in Buddhism. Therefore if you don’t speak up people will misunderstand the Dharma. It is just like anti Dorje Shugden people accused Dorje Shugden is an evil spirit. However the truth is so many Dorje Shugden high lama has reincarnated back as human and continue to preach Dharma to benefit others, and in many of these reincarnations were recognized by His Holiness the Dalai Lama himself. The truth is Dorje Shugden is not an evil spirit because the Dorje Shugden lamas returning in perfect human form. Lastly, why CTA never take action on Dagri Rinpoche? How to trust CTA?

  14. Dagri Rinpoche cases show how CTA double standard and protected only their name not to look bad in the public eyes. However this cases has make tibetan buddhism and H.Holiness name black in the public eyes. CTA can spread the news to against dorje shugden practitioner why not treat equally in Dagri Rinpoche case. This show CTA just using buddhism name and H.H.Dalai Lame to get support from public. CTA case less but only themselve to get their own benifit from other.

  15. Those who are damaging the name of Buddhism, should really stop & think. The consequence are unbearable.

    BestFacebookStatusMindPictures-16883

  16. It is very surprising to see the statement from Lama Zopa on Dagri Rinpoche. Obviously, FPMT still wants to cover Dagri Rinpoche up. They terminated the service of Dagri Rinpoche most likely due to public concerns. However, Lama Zopa still insists that Dagri Rinpoche is a compassionate teacher.

    Did Lama Zopa say this to try to salvage the reputation and credibility of FPMT? I think FPMT is actually in a dilemma. If Lama Zopa said Dagri Rinpoche is guilty of what he has done to the students, people will lose their faith in FPMT. But by saying Dagri Rinpoche is an attained Buddhist master and he has no wrong does not help the situation either.

    The damage to the image and reputation of FPMT has been done, there is no better way to salvage the situation. As more people are coming forward to expose the what Dagri Rinpoche has been doing for decades, more people will leave FPMT or even give up Buddhism. Karmically, FPMT has created so much negative karma by covering up one person.

  17. This is not only confuses others what is compassion, it even allows those who’s been using or taking advantage of their students in the name of Buddhism teachings or the word COMPASSION for their own sexual pleasure.

    I don’t see all these sexual issue going to bring any benefits to their students. If this is so called practicing compassion, then will cause huge damage to the Buddhism.

  18. $5,000 for 6 weeks course in FPMT! Looks like this is a private club for the rich and privileged!

    FPMT 6000 for posting

  19. FPMT reply to Dagri Rinpoche victim, Jakaira Kunsang, reveals claims of sexual abuse and FPMT cover-up as genuine

    See the full post on FPMT Wallahs – Old and New facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/2387411328211489/permalink/2405187776433844/

     

    FPMT cover up

  20. Leaked letters from the FPMT expose another sexual abuse victim by Dagri Rinpoche and more cover ups from the FPMT leadership

    Read the full post and the comments on FPMT Wallahs – Old and New facebook group, https://www.facebook.com/groups/2387411328211489/permalink/2407272092892079/

    FPMT leaked letters

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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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