Dalai Lama speaks out against caste based discrimination, but how about Shugden people?

Recently the Dalai Lama visited Zanskar and speaks out against caste based discrimination:

“I found out that some castes were considered lower caste and others don’t eat and drink with them”…

“Monks also don’t go to their house to perform prayers”…

“But I went along with them and took a picture with them”…

“It is against Buddha’s teaching that in some part of Tibet monasteries don’t enroll people who belongs to a family of blacksmith or butcher”…


Dear Your Holiness the Dalai Lama, would you please also proclaim that Dorje Shugden practitioners and non-practitoners can eat and drink together? And monks can go to Dorje Shugden practitioners’ houses to perform prayers? Would you also take a pictures with other Dorje Shugden lamas please? Would great Gelug monasteries like Ganden, Drepung, Sera also enroll people who practises Dorje Shugden, and not expel them instead?

Dear Your Holiness, would you please do the same for the Dorje Shugden people what you advocated for the discriminated Zanskar people?



Dalai Lama speaks out against caste based discrimination in Zanskar 

Phayul [Friday, June 27, 2014 23:46]

By Phuntsok Yangchen

DHARAMSHALA, June 27: The Tibetan spiritual leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama on Wednesday concluded teachings and Avalokiteshvara initiation in Padum, Zanskar, calling upon the local people to eliminate the practice of caste based discrimination.

“Earlier during my one visit to Ladakh, I found out that some castes were considered lower caste and others don’t eat and drink with them. Monks also don’t go to their house to perform prayers. This practice was called as Serlam Ched (barred from prayer rituals). But I went along with them and took a picture with them,” said the Dalai Lama.

“I have also heard of caste discrimination practices in Zanskar and had suggested it would be good if a lower caste person served me my tea and bread some years ago. But to my disappointment, right after my talk, a case of caste discrimination was reported from here. This is very sad. If you don’t listen and act as I say, I don’t need to come here and you can do whatever you like. If you have believe and faith in me, do as I say.”

He further said that it is against Buddha’s teaching that in some part of Tibet monasteries don’t enroll people who belongs to a family of blacksmith or butcher.

original article: http://www.phayul.com/news/article.aspx?id=35034&article=Dalai+Lama+speaks+out+against+caste+based+discrimination+in+Zanskar


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8 total comments on this postSubmit yours
  1. It is so funny when you talking about discrimination, against caste however you still do the same thing to some group of people. I am not really agreed when HHDL said, not because I not respect him. The reason is if we talked about discrimination, then must also fair to our own people too.

    The reason I said like this, because I not agreed why HH suppressed his people have their own practice? If HHDL thought that caste is based discrimination, then suppressed Dorje Shudgen practitioner is consider what?

  2. Is HHDL practicing double standards ? In the Tibetan Buddhism world, DS practitioners are being treated as a different caste, a lower caste in fact. They are denied medical services in certain locations; they are not allowed to enter certain retail areas; they are not allowed to attend Dharma teachings; their families are also considered outcasts even if they do not practice DS; they are being told again and again how evil their “Buddha”(DS) is ! This must be as bad as those in a lower caste if not worse !!

  3. I think we should have equanimity but why would Chenrezig side with non Buddhist and shun the Buddhist. In this case I am referring to the Dalai Lama being courteous
    to Bon, but he would ostracise Dorje Shugden practitioners.

  4. Dalai Lama always talk about compassion, equality, peace, harmony and tolerance. During his visit to Zanskar he even speaks out against caste discrimination. Has he ever thought of speaking out against Dorje Shugden discrimination? Has he ever thought of how the Dorje Shugden practitioners had to suffer because of this discrimination?

  5. Dear Dalai Lama, could you please extend your call to eliminate the practice of discrimination of castes to practitioners of Dorje Shugden also. They are also being discriminated upon by your very own people. They are not allowed to enter into shops, go to schools and to enter monasteries. Signs are displayed everywhere to bar those who practice Dorje Shugden. If you can do so to the lower caste people, you can do so to Dorje Shugden practitioners. And some Dorje Shugden practitioners are from the upper class!

    This is a fine example of turning a blind eye to those in need. They need to have the freedom to practice their preferred choice of religion no matter what caste they are in.

    Your call will definitely make a huge difference.

  6. Dear Dalai Lama,

    It is funny how you noted the caste based discrimination in Zanskar, but not at all within your own fellow people of the Gelug sect, your own gurus, tutors, and disciples.

    Discrimination happens on a daily basis, whether racial, religious, gender, or other issues. And it is great that a world renowned figure like your good self speaks out against discriminatory issues and command following and support from your followers. However, it would be great to see you practise what you preach. You can’t speak out against discrimination on one hand, and on the other, not do anything about the religious discrimination that your own people are facing – discrimination on Dorje Shugden practitioners. Worst of all, this discrimination surfaced because of your statements and ban made against DS practitioners throughout the years.

    It would be great to really, once and for all, preach what you say, and stop contradicting yourself. Because as it stands, your words have to value or power to someone like myself, because there is no similarities between your words and actions.

  7. Hahaha, “If you don’t listen and act as I say, I don’t need to come here and you can do whatever you like. If you have believe and faith in me, do as I say.” Hmmm, see what believe and faith in the Dalai Lama got many…being discriminated as Shugden practitioners. If he could see the wrongs in discrimination within the caste system, then what of Shugden practitioners being shunned and chased out of premises of the Dalai Lama’s followers. As usual, double talk by the Dalai Lama. Why should others listen to his advice if he himself does not practise what he preaches? Please Dalai Lama, do wake up to the terrible wrongs that your ban on Dorje Shugden had brought on and lift the illegal discriminating ban now.

  8. I really don’t know what to think or say. The Dalai Lama is always seen to advocate kindness, compassion and equanimity and speak out against segregation and discrimination in a lot of countries, situations and religions but somehow has conveniently overlooked his own backyard.

    Why can’t the Dorje Shugden practitioners attend Tibetan schools, go to Tibetan hospitals or even spend time with their fellow humans though of a different school? Why meddle in other people’s affairs when you can’t even take care of your own? Why ask for all these kindness, compassion and equanimity for others when you yourself do not practice it though you say you are for it?

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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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