Is the Dalai Lama the Face of Inter-Religious Harmony?

His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama is a Bodhisattva who needs no introduction. He is world-renowned because of his hard work in promoting peace and harmony and showing love and compassion to all sentient beings. Although the Dalai Lama is synonymous with Buddhism, practitioners from other religions equally respect this spiritual leader for what he represents. He is also said to be an emanation of the Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara or Chenrezig, the Buddha of Compassion.

There is no need for temples, no need for complicated philosophies. My brain and my heart are my temples; my philosophy is kindness. ~ His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama

As the spiritual head of Tibetan Buddhism, the Dalai Lama is always seen meeting with other religious leaders and is often greeted with warm handshakes and embraces as a sign of respect. In his public teachings, the Dalai Lama always talks about love, peace and tolerance and how everyone should embrace these qualities in order to live harmoniously in this world. Clearly, the Dalai Lama has influence beyond the borders of the Tibetan Buddhist world.

The Nobel Peace Prize winner has defended Muslims from being called terrorists during a recent visit to the European Parliament. He has also been seen paying his respects to Jesus and adapting to other cultures and faiths, all out of great compassion and deep respect for others. In his own words, “genuine admiration and respect and appreciation for those traditions.” This spiritual leader is highly respected because he has worked so hard to spread his message of positivity, showing continuous love and respect to everyone.

Love and Compassion are the true religions to me. But to develop this, we do not need to believe in any religion. ~ H.H. the 14th Dalai Lama

The Dalai Lama along with other religious leaders inaugurating the Interfaith Conclave on Peace and Religious Harmony in Guwahati.

The Dalai Lama with Laurence Freeman OSB, Director of the World Community for Christian Meditation, a Catholic priest and a Benedictine monk of Turvey Abbey in England.

The Dalai Lama at an interfaith conference “On World Religions: Diversity, Not Dissension” with Indian statesman and scholar Dr. Karan Singh (1st left), Islamic scholar and peace activist Maulana Wahiduddin Khan (2nd right) and Reverend Mpho A. Tutu (1st right), founder and executive director of the Tutu Institute for Prayer and Pilgrimage.

The Dalai Lama with Archbishop Desmond Tutu at the Upper Tibetan Children’s Village School in Dharamsala

The Dalai Lama praying in St. Stephen’s Cathedral in Vienna, Austria.

Whether one believes in a religion or not, and whether one believes in rebirth or not, there isn’t anyone who doesn’t appreciate kindness and compassion. ~ H.H. the 14th Dalai Lama

The exiled Tibetan Buddhist leader travels widely, meeting with leaders of various religions around the world. He is regularly seen with the heads of the other schools of Tibetan Buddhism, namely the Nyingma, Kagyu and Sakya schools, as well as other Buddhist traditions such as Theravadan, Mahayana, Zen and so forth. The pictures speak a thousand words as to the mutual respect these spiritual personalities have for each other. His example behooves us to put his teachings on kindness and non-discrimination into practice.

The Dalai Lama joins local Muslims for evening mass at Jama Masjid Mosque in New Delhi

The Dalai Lama at the World Hindu Congress in New Delhi

The Dalai Lama at the Sikh Gudwara at Tso Pema, India

The Dalai Lama visits the Judah Hyam Synagogue in New Delhi.

The Dalai Lama sits down with muslim elders at the Nizamuddin Chilla shrine in New Delhi

The Dalai Lama meets Muni Tarun Sagar, representative of the Digambar sect of Jainism, during an interfaith meeting in New Delhi.

The Dalai Lama with Pope John Paul II

The Dalai Lama with the recently canonized Mother Teresa

There are many different sects and schools within the Buddhist religion but according to the Dalai Lama, “it is important to show respect to other religions”. The Dalai Lama even acknowledges the Bön religion, which was once segregated and discriminated against by other Buddhist practitioners who named the Bönpos “chipa” (outsiders). After the Dalai Lama met with their spiritual leader, he granted them equal rights and privileges as the other Tibetan Buddhist schools and urged other Buddhist practitioners to accept and respect them.

However, a schism in the Tibetan Buddhist community was created when the Tibetan leadership made a public statement that the practice of the Buddhist deity Dorje Shugden is malevolent and should be stopped. Those who practiced Dorje Shugden were not allowed to receive medical treatment in hospitals, disallowed entry into libraries and stores, expelled from monasteries and even forbidden to attend his public teachings. People were encouraged to separate from family members who practiced Dorje Shugden as well.

All major religious traditions carry the same message: a message of love, compassion, forgiveness, tolerance, contentment, self-discipline — all religious traditions. ~ H.H. the Dalai Lama in an interview with the European Parliament

The Dalai Lama with the head of the Nyingma school of Tibetan Buddhism, His Eminence Kyabje Taklung Tsetrul Rinpoche in Dharamsala.

The Dalai Lama with the 17th Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje, head of the Karma Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism.

The Dalai Lama with the head of the Sakya school of Tibetan Buddhism, the Sakya Trizin (center) and the 17th Karmapa (left)

Trizin Rinpoche, head of the Bön tradition, presents tenshug (long life prayers) to the Dalai Lama at Menri-Ling Bönpo Monastery.

The Dalai Lama greets Theravadan monks at the Theravada Nalanda tradition dialogue on Vinaya in New Delhi, India

The Dalai Lama presents a gift to a Sri Lankan delegation of monks in New Delhi, India

Austria: The Dalai Lama thanks two Theravadan monks who recited the Heart Sutra in Pali.

The Dalai Lama with priests of the Soto Zen tradition during a visit to Japan

The Dalai Lama with Vietnamese Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh

The big question here is, why was the ban on Dorje Shugden imposed when the Dalai Lama himself has shown so many examples of how we should respect other cultures, religions and practices, even if we do not agree with their beliefs? People were left confused and in turmoil with the Dorje Shugden ban. On the one hand, the Dalai Lama gives teachings about tolerance, equality and religious freedom and yet on the other hand, the Tibetan administration has imposed a ban on Dorje Shugden practice.

Monks were forced to swear against practicing Dorje Shugden and those in the Tibetan community had to promise to stop propitiating Dorje Shugden in order to obtain travel documents or to be admitted into their monasteries. With the enforcement of the ban, many Dorje Shugden practitioners have been separated from their families and friends for many years. They are forced to choose between parents and friends or to break their samaya with their gurus. Shugden-practicing monks were expelled from their monasteries and in general, those associated with Dorje Shugden continue to be victims of verbal abuse, name-calling, death threats and physical violence. They suffer this every day just because they choose to continue practicing Dorje Shugden. All these actions shown by the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA) and the Tibetan people are the total opposite of the Dalai Lama’s teachings and example.

In actuality, Dorje Shugden devotees are simply Buddhist practitioners following the teachings passed down by their gurus. Is it right that just because they chose to continue with their faith, they should be treated badly? The Dalai Lama has stressed countless times that we should have no discrimination and hatred towards others but only love and respect. Everyone who takes the Dalai Lama as their spiritual guide should follow his teachings.

In 2015, the Dalai Lama attended an interfaith meeting in London alongside Christian, Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu and Sikh leaders. In his speech, the Dalai Lama repeated once again what he always says about love and compassion and that each religion is worthy of respect. He also used the analogy of food, saying that it would be foolish to insist “I like to eat this food, therefore you should eat it too!”

As students of the Dalai Lama, practitioners should represent their guru and the teachings well. However, the Dorje Shugden situation today is the exact opposite of the ideal situation described above. From physical attacks to cyber bullying to separation of family members, it is clear that the CTA’s actions including their recent anti-Dorje Shugden video is the anti-thesis of what the Dalai Lama promotes.

We can live without religion and meditation but we cannot survive without human affection. ~ H.H. the 14th Dalai Lama

Various signs can be seen around the Tibetan refugee communities in India. These signs say that “Dorje Shugden practitioners are not allowed to enter”

Harmony among our different religious traditions is essential for world peace. Genuine harmony should be founded on mutual respect. And respect should be based on a recognition that all the world’s major religious traditions are similar in having the potential to help human beings live at peace with themselves, with each other and with the environment. ~ H.H. the 14th Dalai Lama

We live in a world where every individual is entitled to religious freedom. The millions of Buddhist practitioners who flock to attend the Dalai Lama’s public teachings should practice what he preaches. No discrimination or double standards – Dorje Shugden practitioners have done nothing wrong to deserve this kind of treatment. They are humans just like everyone else. Segregation and attacks are what Dorje Shugden practitioners get in return. Would the Dalai Lama, a paragon of human rights, agree with this?

Gen Chonze, assistant to His Holiness Trijang Rinpoche, was attacked in Shar Gaden Monastery because he practices Dorje Shugden.

Dorje Shugden practitioners were attacked by followers of the Dalai Lama outside a public teaching venue in America.

Everyone is free to choose whether they pay religion any regard, but to neglect compassion is a mistake because it is the source of our own well-being. ~ H.H. the 14th Dalai Lama

We should always represent our gurus’ teachings, in both action and speech. All Tibetans should treat their fellow global citizens equally without any hatred or discrimination. Acceptance is the key to world peace and it is extremely important for all Tibetans to unite and not fight against each other. In particular, the Central Tibetan Administration should follow the Dalai Lama’s advice and repair the divide created by the Dorje Shugden controversy instead of encouraging and provoking discrimination and hatred.

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  1. May all the peaceful and wrathful deities of the three kayas reflect their wisdom and compassion into all beings of present and future and bless all beings with their wisdom and compassion as well as all with all teachings and practices of wisdom and compassion and may they protect all transmissions, teachers and students of wisdom and compassion with their wisdom and compassion.

    Precious sublime non-dual awareness, victorious liberating wisdom and compassion, may it arise in all beings of present and future and stay forever firm.

  2. On the face of it, this question is hard to rationalize due to the anti-religious freedom stance His Holiness took towards Dorje Shugden, only to change his view very abruptly recently.

    However, if we look at it from the point of view of longer-term and aggregate gains that the teachings and practices of wisdom and compassion have achieved over the last decades, we can see strong positive results.

    Hence one of the conclusions that we can make is that His Holiness, just like many of the past teachers/lamas/Bodhisattvas/Mahasiddhas who seem to have acted strangely and beyond logic and even compassion, is acting with skill for the benefit of the whole even though it means that in the short run, it would be detrimental to some.

    We are taught about non-duality. This is one time to see it in action.

  3. We should remember that even though the former Dharma Kindom Guge was “conquered”, dharma istself (wisdom and compassion) was not conquered at all and dharma became the basis for Tibet like non-dual awareness (conciousness) is the basis for any being.

    May all dharmapalas of present and future protect all mind and oral transmissions, lineages, teachers and students of wisdom and compassion with their wisdom and compassion for the benifit of all beings of present and future and may the wisdom and compassion of all wrathful and peaceful deities/yidam deities protect the samaya of all teachers and students of wisdom and compassion with all all the deities of wisdom and compassion – may the samaya with wisdom and compassion stay forever firm.

    May the wisdom and compassion of the five khandros protect all enlightnend activities of all teachers and students of wisdom and compassion in the present and future for the benifit of all beings in the present and future.

  4. If one does not know better, one would be fooled by the PR photos of the all smiley Dalai Lama so respectful towards representative of other religions. But as one is made fully aware of the treatment under his leadership towards Dorje Shugden practitioners, all these photos are nothing but fakes and hypocrisy. And to think that Tibetan Buddhism has to revere a fake as their spiritual leader, it is truly degeneration of Buddha Dharma! Do the right thing, Mr Dalai Lama, lift Shugden ban and restore respect and freedom for all practitioners!

  5. @Camillia

    With being aware of non-duality and seing dualistic activities of karmic wind and beings is not easy to accept but there is only one way to continue that is sangha or to go on with cultivating once inherent wisdom and compassion in order to continue with dissolving karma with wisdom and compassion as long as we have this preacious human life with dharma.

    We are aware of that religion/states/republics are based on duality, are dualisitc betray systems, because of these beings have a dualistic karmic perception and experience of reality. If they would know better they would not do this at all to themself and others. But unfortuneately they are not aware of non-duality like others and unfortuneateley it is very difficult for them to understand non-duality due to karma.

    That’s why there is dharma, to point at non-duality with texts and words in order to let them experience reality or non-duality/how reality really is from itself/by itself.

    It’s a difficult banana point of view with that banana within perception and experience of reality that is not banana at all but we can only avoid and overcome this banana with wisdom and compassion because beings, nature and elements itself are not banana at all but some beings think that it is banana because they are used to practice banana so much that just everything appears banana for them.

    So let’s deal with just anything in a wise and compssionate way for the benifit of ourself and others. We can do this because we are wisdom and compassion anyway.

    Of course Dorje Shugden, like any other deity/yidam within vajrayana/dharma, represents aspects of wisdom and compassion that is not spirit worship at all but using wisdom and compassion in order to avoid creating and to overcome spirit (karmic wind/sem/mind/banana).

    Once yidam or all yidam deities represent(s) all aspects of once rangshar/self arising wisdom and compassion or conciousnesscontinuum that is rooted in spacecontinuum that is unborn and unceasing. That’s why relative reality is cycles of elements, nature and life and so on.

    So we can’t give up or loose wisdom and compassion by nature because wisdom and compassion is our unborn and unceasing conciousnesscontinuum/self that is free of non-existence and so much free of lastingness at the same time that it is and stays pure, healing, protecting, free of attachment and aversion or wisdom and compassion anyway. Nothing can manipulate or destroy this mirror like vajraconciousnesscontinuum or buddhanature. It’s simply impossible to get rid of conciousness/life/wisdom and compassion/healing/regeneration/protection.

    So if someone is asking us to do so, well then we just smile out of being aware of this unborn and unceasing awareness/wisdom and compassion and continue with wisdom and compassion because we can’t change anything about it anyway.

    We can’t change anything about the fact that we are conciousnesscontinuum that is wisdom and compassion, so we can’t stop being what we are, not matter what happend, happens and will happen, it’s just not possible at all not to be wisdom and compassion.

    Even beings who think they are socialists/capitalists or whatever have conciousness that is wisdom and compassion, so no matter how much they want to be socialists/capitalists or whatever to betray themself, they can’t be illusions at all because of reality is and stays free of lastingness and non-existence.

    Not matter how much beings might create the illusion of god and devil/good and evil/friend and enemy and betray themself and others with that dualism, reality itself stays free of duality/god and devil/good and evil/friend and enemy because it stays free of lastingness and non-existence.

    The practice of wisdom and compassion is the activity of our conciousness/wisdom and compassion, so we perform enlightnend activity when we practice dharma that is cultivating once own inherent wisdom and compassion or sangha. This is happening by nature anyway and nothing can do anything about it.

    With sangha, dharma and buddha continues because buddha continues, dharma and sangha continues. Nothing can stop concioiusnesscontinuum itself, so nothing can stop wisdom and compassion itself, nothing can stop sangha, dharma and buddha anyway.

    Nothing can stop impermanence, interdependence, cause and effect due to reality is free of non-existence and lastingness. So we just continue, no matter what happend, happens or will happen because with wisdom and compassion we only can be victorious! Violence that is rooted in duality/illusions is not a continuum but impermenent and will dissolve sooner or later anyway, there is no way around reality itself. No being can escape reality/non-duality.

    Movement of reality (elements, nature conciousness itself) is protection, regeneration and healing or healing movement that is tara aspect. Nothing can stop tara, breathing in and out is healing movement or tara that is connected/rooted with/in space or non-duality and just anything.

    Watching cycle of breath is going from karmic perception and experience to non-dual percpetion and experience of reality that is wisdom and compassion, being aware of being connected with just anything and being aware of this freedom of duality, freedom of god and devil, freedom of good and evil, freedom of peace and war, freedom of friend and enemy and wellbeing due to compassion that arises from that non-duality.

    Cultivating dharma is cultivating healing movement or natural movement of non-duality/reality of mind, speech and body in order not to cause and effect karma by harmful movement of mind speech and body.

    So human beings are allowed to be what they are by nature and are allowed to perform healing movement of mind, speech and body because that is what human beings are by nature. The human body is an expression of non-duality, like nature and elements.

    Human beings don’t need to follow eternalism and nihilism/dualism/dualistic betray systems (harmful movements of mind, speech and body) just to harm themself and others – just because of some people have a banana that is impermanent.

    We are not bound to illusions (duality) because reality itself is non-duality and much bigger than all these illusions that will dissappear sooner or later anyway.

    Bön/Dharma is still here since many thousand years and will be here, no matter what happend, happens or will happen because space- and conciousnesscontinuum or self arising wisdom and compassion is here anyway, non-duality is here anyway and buddhas allways will arise/appear anyway to teach dharma and help to cultivate wisdom and compassion for the freedom and wellbeing of all beings.

    So we just don’t follow duality/illusions/bananas but stay with realilty/non-duality.

    So we just support any kind of healing movement, if it is perfect or not doesn’t matter at all, we just support any kind of healing movement for the benifit of mankind. So let’s support dignity regardless of banana.

    Don’t beleive the banana hype!

  6. I would like to quote Geshe Tsultim Gyeltsen from “Mirror of Wisdom”:

    “Our developable buddha nature is the infinite potential of our mind to grow and develop spiritually through listening to, contemplating and meditating on the teachings. When our mind is completely free of the two obscurations-the obscurations to liberation (deluded emotions, such as anger and desire) and the obscurations to knowledge (ignorance born from dualistic perceptions)-it transforms into the all-knowing mind of a buddha.”

    The two protagonists in the tussle over the Dorje Shugden practice are the Sun-Moon, Compassion-Wisdom, Chenrezig-Manjushri. Through their skillful means we benefit from the purification of our delusions and dualistic perceptions.

    We are very lucky indeed.

  7. It is very hard to remain neutral in this whole drama. It is very hard to stand by and watch the poor Tibetans being divided and bullied. It is even harder to watch monks being discriminated against. If the Dalai Lama is true to his teachings, he should ease the sufferings of Tibetans and Tibetan Buddhists around the world.

    Can we say that there is a higher and deeper dharma than what meets the eye? That there is purification and merit accumulation in all these suffering experienced.

    From a mundane point of view, that is very difficult to reconcile. The only way to live through this is to believe that the Dalai Lama is Chenrezig and that his all compassionate nature is indeed paving the way for purification and accumulation of merits.

  8. I take the whole drama of mankind as a teaching not to ignore non-duality, not to create duality and conflict, not to follow others, not to harm myself and others as much as possible or as much as karma and my mindfulness/awareness allows me to do so and do my best to get rid of my karmabanana for the benifit of all beings.

    May all deities of wisdom and compassion help me and all beings to practice wisdom and compassion for the benifit of all beings.

    When i experience suffering may i purify the karmabanana of all beings, when i experience compassion may i share it with all beings.

    Ignorance/karma is an unfair fun-killer-banana that only can be eaten by wisdom and compassion.

    I put some whipped cream on my karmabanana.

    So let’s get out of samsara, that’s not fun at all.

    We all should get sick of samsara and practice wisdom and compassion. It makes no sense at all to continue with samsara.

    Dharma study and practice is best investment we can do.

  9. I believe that HH the Dalai Lama is very compassionate but he should finally put his eyes on the Tibetan people who is suffering now for so long. The ban has created suffering in every single family, within friends and neighbours.

    I pray that the ban will be lifted swiftly so that the Tibetans can live in harmony and find a solution with the Chinese Government.

    Thank you for highlighting the many different leaders of other religions HH meets. May he soon have compassion with the Dorje Shugden practitioners.

  10. @Sascha

    When a man is hungry, sick, hurt and endures suffering, there is little or no potential to practice Dharma, leave alone understanding sunyata. It is therefore the spiritual leaders’ responsibility to alleviate the pain of his people so that there is spiritual betterment.

    Isn’t HIs Holiness the spiritual leader for the people of Tibet?

  11. We all are the same for example we have the same desire for physical goods and desire for happiness and etc. We hope to overcome the problems and reduce the suffering in long term. As such, we all have the same right to fulfill the desire and overcome the problems.

    We can choose to believe HH Dalai Lama is Chenrezig with full of compassion and kindness by spreading the dharma the good qualities wherever he go. We cannot deny that HH Dalai Lama’s teaching has very much impact to the people to learn to be better and overcome the problems.

    On the other hand, HH Dalai Lama met with many countries’ leaders and religions’ leaders as to show the harmony in actions. However, this is not applied to Dorje Shugden practitioners. I personally believe that there must be a reason behind for it.

    Plea HH Dalai Lama to resolve the Dorje Shugden ban soon in order to reveal the truth to all of us.

  12. @Camillia

    Buddha Shakyamunis heart advice was only to follow the light within ourself and not to follow others.

    If someones aks us to jump out of the window, well if we do this then it is not the fault of someone who asked us to do so just because we have assumed whatever instead of following our wisdom and compassion.

    If we jump, because cause and effect is perfect – everything is perfect because there is no way to cheat with cause and effect itself, we will have an perfect experience of reality or that only with wisdom and compassion we can liberate ourself from suffering and the causes of suffering and not others or following others just because of whatever.

    So we should not give up our responsibility for ourself just because of whatever.

    Of course, if we can alleviate pain/suffering and causes of pain/suffering, that’s what dharma/life/nature and elements is/are about, we can and should do so because reality/non-duality by itself is protection from causes of suffering (ignorance/duality/karma/harmful actions of mind, speech and body) and suffering as well as regeneration and healing if something went wrong.

    But i am responsible for myself, the teachers that i have choosen to learn from are not responsible for myself and my karma at all because they can’t change anything about it anyway so it is my job to avoid and overcome my karma/suffering with my wisdom and compassion because i am the only one who can do this.

    The teachers have shown me they way, now it’s up to me what i do with it. Of course we receive support but it is always up to ourself and not up to others. So we are supposed to avoid karma and to overcome karma by our inherent wisdom and compassion.

  13. @Sherabz

    … “I personally believe that there must be a reason behind for it.” …

    We could take all aspects of wisdom and compassion and create our own deities collection, it would work fine because it is about view, compassion and healing action of mind, speech and body and not about the name/label of one aspect of wisdom and compassion.


    Another name for Vajrakilaya from nyingma lineage is Walpur Drukse Chempa in bön lineage, it is the same aspect of wisdom and compassion behind a diffrent name/label so it is the same deity or same aspect of self arising wisdom and compassion.

    So if we call the protective aspect of wisdom and compassion, that is an emanaton of wisdom (manjushri) and compassion (chenrezig), Dorje Shugden or whatever is not the point at all because it is all about understanding all aspects of non-duality/wisdom and compassion/conciousness and to use this wisdom and compassion in order to avoid creating karma and to overcome karma with wisdom and compassion.

    So one question would be: “Is the study and practice text of dorje shugden free of eternalism and nihilism (duality) or not?” Because to practice duality causes and effects karma/suffering there is a need to check any study and practice texts before using it! Here we need to take care for ourself and to stay with non-duality, no matter if others like it or not because we don’t want to cause and effect karma/suffering.

    If there is no dualism within the study and practice texts, well than the practice is fine and anything depends on view, compassion and action like it depends anyway.

    The deity or aspect of wisdom and compassion itself simply can’t be good or evil because wisdom and compassion itself is free of duality/good and evil because reality is free of lastingness and non-existence.

    So to say that a deity is evil and therefore worhiping a spirit, it just don’t match with reality/non-duality that a deity/aspect of non-duality is about.

    So the question is not whether the deity is wisdom and compassion or not because of course the deity is wisdom and compassion and therefore not spirit worhip at all.

    Another question could be: “What is going on within a group of beings that practice dorje shugden practice, maybe there is something in the bush?”

    Oracles, that are emanations of manjushri (wisdom) reflect reality clear like a mirror, there is no doubt that there is a reason behind for it.

    I can’t imagine that HHDL and CTA just do something just like that, because the know of non-duality and the vajrayana system of all lineages very well. So why should they say that Dorje Shugden is evil and that it is spirit worship to pratice the protective aspect of non-duality that is free of good and evil or not at all harmful?

    Otherwise it would clearly show that bringing in duality is really what creates conflict and suffering. To ignore non-duality is really crossing the red line and starting mambo jambo.

    However, we should continue with dharma because there is no other way anyway.

  14. I believe in the whole scheme of things, His Holiness Dalai Lama is trying to teach us that pure Dharma is beyond his “rock star” or “King-like” status in the world in general and among Tibetans in particular.

    It is to me related to what the Buddha Shakyamuni taught a long time ago as described in the Kalama Sutta..

    The Sutta begins when the Buddha passes through the village of Kesaputta and is greeted by a clan called the Kalamas. They ask for his advice: they say that many wandering holy men and ascetics pass through, expounding their teachings and criticizing the teachings of others. So whose teachings should they follow?

    The Buddha delivers in response a sermon that serves as an entry point to the Dharma, the Buddhist teachings for those unconvinced by mere spectacular revelation.

    The Buddha proceeds to list the criteria by which any sensible person can decide which teachings to accept as true.

    Do not blindly believe religious teachings, he tells the Kalamas, just because they are claimed to be true, or even through the application of various methods or techniques. Direct knowledge grounded in one’s own experience can be called upon. He advises that the words of the wise should be heeded and taken into account.

    He proposes not a passive acceptance but, rather, constant questioning and personal testing to identify those truths which verifiably reduce one’s own stress or misery (Pali: dukkha).

    The Kalama Sutta states (Pali expression in parentheses):

    Do not go upon what has been acquired by repeated hearing (anussava);
    nor upon tradition (paramparā);
    nor upon rumor (itikirā);
    nor upon what is in a scripture (piṭaka-sampadāna);
    nor upon surmise (takka-hetu);
    nor upon an axiom (naya-hetu);
    nor upon specious reasoning (ākāra-parivitakka);
    nor upon a bias towards a notion that has been pondered over (diṭṭhi-nijjhān-akkh-antiyā);
    nor upon another’s seeming ability (bhabba-rūpatāya);
    nor upon the consideration, The monk is our teacher (samaṇo no garū);

    Kalamas, when you yourselves know: “These things are good; these things are not blamable; these things are praised by the wise; undertaken and observed, these things lead to benefit and happiness,” enter on and abide in them.’

    Thus, the Buddha named ten specific sources whose knowledge should not be immediately viewed as truthful without further investigation to avoid fallacies:

    1. Oral history
    2. Traditional
    3. News sources
    4. Scriptures or other official texts
    5. Suppositional reasoning
    6. Philosophical dogmatism
    7. Common sense
    8. One’s own opinions
    9. Experts
    10. Authorities or one’s own teacher


    Have we really applied Shaykyamuni Buddha’s teachings?

    If we have, maybe it would clearer why His Holiness Dalai Lama is doing what he is doing – teaching us not to take his words for granted.

  15. The Shugden groups can dare defy the Dalai Lama because they don’t have a country. The Tibetans are scattered all over the world and they have their various power basis from their various countries. I’ve spoken to Ms. Dhardon Sharling about this. If all the Tibetans were back in Tibet, they would have no chance to defy the Dalai Lama. The Dalai Lama’s government would crush them into silence. How dare they defy the Dalai Lama. Democracy is not for the backwards and illiterate Tibetans. They need a strong, smart and able ruler like the Dalai Lama and his ministers to tell them what is good or bad for them. The Dorje Shugden practice should be banned completely from the Tibetans and Tibetan nation because it is a harmful practice. And no religious freedom should be allowed to let this Dorje Shugden religion arise. In history, many other harmful religions were suppressed for the good of mankind. Shugden should be suppressed and all people who practice him should be forced to give up the practice.

  16. Everyone should go and take a picture with the Dalai Lama and post it. It will boost ‘business’. It’s made me look really valid and more people trust what I am saying simply because I have my picture taken with the Dalai Lama. I’ve roped in Carole MccQuirre and gang to do the same things. You see because I am from East Germany and we don’t believe in any sort of religious freedom. Whatever the regime in the past told you to do, you do it without question. The Shugden groups should not be allowed to practice their religion because the Dalai lama says so. We shouldn’t question the Dalai Lama or defy him. After all he is not human but a god. So if Dalai Lama says don’t practice Dorje Shugden, just follow along without question because why should there be religious freedom. The populace are too stupid to see what religion is good and what is harmful.

  17. I agree with you Paljor. The Tibetans do not need democracy, but a strong firm hand to tell them what to do. They are not like we educated English people who can handle and know what to do with democracy. The fact that Tibetans have no real elected leaders and the leader is really the Dalai Lama for the last 60 years is good news. Tibetans cannot elect their own leaders. When the Dalai Lama dies, we wait for him to reincarnate back and take over again because he is the only leader that can handle Tibetans.

  18. Well we all know what happened way back then to old woman Carol. Carol McQuire fell in love with monk in Kadampa years ago and he kept his vows and did not reciprocate. She just was not attractive at all to him. Carol happened to be a nun that time which adds to the salacious story. Because she was jealous and angry for his attentions, she left NKT and blamed NKT for her ‘pains, traumas and wrongs done to her’. She turned against her kind guru and protector Dorje Shugden. Sounds like the Medusa story. Poor old Carol, still at it with attacking people and making hate friends online to fill her lonely boring and solitary old age.

    Whatever she does has nothing to do with dharma and Dalai Lama. It is strictly to feel important and relevant because she has nothing in her life especially a man she so desperately wants. Poor old girl.

  19. 尊贵的达赖尊者是世界和平的使者,也是藏转佛教中活佛,转世体系里重要的一个体系之一,活佛,就是佛菩萨乘愿再来,那么只要我们相信佛教,那么就会相信,佛菩萨都是已经证悟的,那么他们是不会有分别心,而因为你是何种生物,何种形态,或是信仰而排挤你而不救渡你,不帮助你,不保佑你,那么就是没有道理了对于“多杰雄登”护法的修持上给予打压与排挤的事件上,就有着让人摸不着头绪了?

    20 Years of Suffering: Lift the Shugden Ban
    #WatchHere 👉 📺

  20. There are so much posts/news/photos/videos etc talking this Shugden controversy and its chain effect seems to be quite harmful to both lay and ordained. I wonder when would all these stop? I seriously think if HHDL is Chenrezig, shouldn’t His Holiness has already realised so much damages has happened since the implementation of this ban? If His Holiness really want to promote shugden in such a way, i would say it really has done more hurt than good…I’m sorry, as a Tibetan living in exile like me, I’m really upset to see my fellow Tibetans are parting and fighting just because of this issue and my government use this as scapegoat to create more harm to the Shugden people. I’m a Shugdenpa, I sincerely pray to His Holiness please resolve this issue. Must be fair to everyone. Shugden is not evil but a Buddha. Tibet is supposed to be a spiritual place that produce thousands of millions of high scholars and Rinpoche, but now we all separated and not united. Please, i beg you His Holiness to solve this problem. Tuk Che je nang!

  21. It is very heart warming to see His Holiness embraces a person of another religion and showing respect to them. What I don’t understand is why His Holiness rejects Dorje Shugden followers, denies them to his teachings and wants to cut all connections or relationship with Dorje Shugden followers? Why can’t he show respect to Dorje Shugden followers the same way he shows respects to other religions? Is this double standard? His Holiness is very influential, people listen to His Holiness without having doubts in them. If His Holiness says Dorje Shugden followers are bad, no one will really investigate if this is true. Many facts have proven Dorje Shugden is not a spirit, not harmful to anyone, I hope His Holiness can be so kind to announce to the world the truth so that there will be no separation among the Tibetan and Tibetan Buddhism.

  22. Love and Compassion are the true religions to me. But to develop this, we do not need to believe in any religion. ~ H.H. the 14th Dalai Lama

    It is rejoicing to see the Dalai Lama interacting with other religious leaders, showing how all encompassing Buddhism is. What he shares with the whole world are beautiful messages of love and acceptance. No wonder many are drawn to him as the world is so in need of the peace within.

    If the Dalai Lama does not need to believe in that religion to have love and compassion, then why is he outrightly rejecting the Dorje Shugden practitioners? Where is the love and compassion in preventing from entering his Dharma teachings? Such contradiction in his public overtures as compared to the way he treats his people and Dorje Shugden practitioners. Many know him as the Buddha Avalokiteshvara, the Buddha of Compassion and yet often times, he just seem so worldly. As though he had been influenced by greed, power and pride and selling himself out for sponsorship monies. Although he had passed the governance to elected CTA, they had failed (I would say miserably) to bring their people the much wish for dialogue to return home to Tibet. Even now they are still known as Refugees, after 60 years. Outwardly CTA seem to be the Governing body, I think that the Dalai Lama is still heavily influencing their direction of governance. So why the sacrifice of sacred Protector Dorje Shugden and his practitioners to distract people away from their failures? First he says Dorje Shugden is harmful to his life then last year he says Dorje Shugden had never and will never harm him. After so many years of sufferings heaped upon the Shugden practitioners, now the reason for it is invalid. So why is CTA still creating so much discriminatory acts against the Shugden practitioners. I mean, badge of declaration of non Shugden practitioner??? Then the 400 pages publication and video to explain their illogical and unproven claims??? It amazes me that someone would spend millions on publications of wrong views or ignorance. What more a government body.

    With above said, I still have my respect for the Dalai Lama and really pray that he may swiftly manifest his real Boddhicitta mind to lift the ban on Dorje Shugden practice, to unite his people and all the Tibetan Buddhism practitioners. May he live long and be the Buddha that guides everyone towards Buddhist practices.

  23. @SabrinaS

    “… to unite his people and all the Tibetan Buddhism practitioners. …”

    We are not separated at all, everything is interdependent, we are interdependent and the dharma teachings, study and practice of others around the world support me and my dharma study and practice supports all others around the world as well. And we have support of the elements, nature and all beings who perform enlightnend activity within spacecontinuum.

    We are all connected anyway and as our lamas say, to never give up dharma and others, no matter what happend, happens or will happen.

    May i never give up dharma, may i never give up others.

    May the wisdom of non-duality and compassion protect all teachers and students of dharma and may all harmful powers that are hostile to wisdom and compassion be destroyed by the healing power of wisdom and compassion.

    We are united.

    Love you all

  24. Dalai Lama is known as the epitome of compassion. However the a figure head of compassion should not be also the same person who enacting and carried on the Dorje Shugden ban.

    For Tibet’s sake and for Tibetan buddhism sake, the Dalai Lama has to stop all this dichotomy, as doing so will be very much much more beneficial. For the end of the suffering for Dorje Shugden people I wish the Dalai Lama and CTA will end this persecution on Dorje Shugden people.

  25. The 14th Dalai Lama shows great compassion everywhere and to most schools of Tibetan Buddhism.This has endeared him to the hearts of many throughout the world, and within the Tibetan community. In this respect , it is easy to see him as Chenrezig, the Buddha of great compassion.

    Yet, for more than 20 years now, he has placed a ban on the practice of Dharma Protector Dorje Shugden, and this has brought tremendous suffering to many who still continue to practice, despite the ban, because to give up the practice would be to break their samaya with their root Gurus, who had given them the practice. Furthermore, all the reasons given for the ban have been invalidated, with convincing reasons and evidence.

    Not long ago, the Dalai Lama came out with a statement that we can practice Shugden and Shugden had never harmed him. Yet, he has :1) not officially pronounced the lifting of the ban ; and 2)not allowed any negotiations with his representatives to lift the ban, despite repeated pleas.

    So now, while the ban lingers, Shugden practitioners continue to suffer from it. They have been persecuted and discriminated against in important areas of need , like education in schools for their children and medical treatment in state-run hospitals and clinics. The suffering is needless as they have committed no crime nor have they violated any of their religious vows.

    In this respect, I fail to understand why the ban cannot be lifted nor negotiations be held to pave the way for lifting the ban to end unnecessary suffering. I fail to see compassion unless there is light at the end of this tunnel. Perhaps, the light will come from a different direction. In this I rest my hope and also reaffirm my faith in the Dalai Lama as Chenrezig .

  26. Yes, I will be convinced that the Dalai Lama is the Face of Inter-religious harmony, once the ban on Shugden practice is lifted.

  27. Exactly for achieving the religious harmony and it is out of compassion for all sentient beings and for the goodness of humanity, His Holiness The Dalai Lama bravely declared that the Dorje Shugden should be abandoned for His sublime mind sees it as a threat to humanity and religious harmony.

  28. This is one of very important question, respect all others religions but create problems to Dorje Shugden practitioner why? Even we are same follower of Buddhism religious but more then that we all are humans beings, if have compassion to others then must stop this ban.

    Thank you to share all these information

  29. The Dalai Lama has been propagating kindness, loving compassion, tolerance, giving, forgiveness for decades all over the globe, and these are really wonderful as they were taught by the Buddha. All these above do not discriminate, do not create harm and suffering, yet fair and just to all. But back home the Dalai Lama does the opposite of what he preaches, and still people who support the Dalai Lama do not see nor think the ban on Dorje Shugden is anything but what the Dalai Lama stands for. The Dalai Lama accepted and recognized the practice of Bon (which I think the Bon practitioners have every right to pursue) but why not Dorje Shugden practice? It is not about whether Dorje Shugden is a spirit or not, it is about people’s choice and religious freedom, and the inhumane treatments Dorje Shugden practitioners received.

  30. Take a look at this clear video of His Holiness the Dalai Lama asking the monasteries to expel monks that practice Dorje Shugden. Click here to watch:

  31. Nechung is ZUMA 👎 before I m think he is one of d best when I m watch dis video By Geshe Dorjee la but now I m think is not d truth n he is lie to Tibet people we r not back to Tibet yt Chithue Tenpa Yarphel la tq for talk about truth of Nechung . I m watch to this video many time la n after I hear you talk I m not belief to Nechung

  32. What will the all the people around the world and in Tibet do now? Dalai Lama says he is happy that Tibet is a part of China and should remain a part of China. So many Tibetans self-immolated for Tibet to be independent and now Dalai Lama did a 360 degree turn and says he wants to go back to Tibet and China and Tibet should be a part of China. So unbelievable. So many are angry and disappointed.

    Tibetans ready to be part of China: Dalai Lama
    Organised by the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA), the event was a part of “Thank You India – 2018″ held by the Tibetan community across India to mark 60 years of its exile in the country.
    Indo-Asian News Service
    Tibetans are ready to be a part of China if guaranteed full rights to preserve their culture, the Dalai Lama said on Friday.
    “Tibetans are not asking for independence. We are okay with remaining with the People’s Republic of China, provided we have full rights to preserve our culture,” the 83-year-old spiritual leader said at “Thank You Karnataka” event here in the city.
    Organised by the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA), the event was a part of “Thank You India – 2018″ held by the Tibetan community across India to mark 60 years of its exile in the country.
    “Several of Chinese citizens practicing Buddhism are keen on Tibetan Buddhism as it is considered scientific,” the Nobel laureate said.
    Born in Taktser hamlet in northeastern Tibet, the Dalai Lama was recognized at the age of two as the reincarnation of the 13th Dalai Lama, Thubten Gyatso. He fled to India from Tibet after a failed uprising against the Chinese rule in 1959.
    China annexed Tibet in 1950, forcing thousands of Tibetans, including monks, to flee the mountain country and settle in India as refugees.
    Since then, India has been home to over 100,000 Tibetans majorly settled in Karnataka, Himachal Pradesh among other states.


  33. Dear Dalai Lama,

    Since you started the cruel ban against the 350 year Dorje Shugden practice, how has it benefit your Tibetan society and Buddhism in the world? Things have become worse and most educated Tibetans can see this. They don’t speak out not because they don’t see your ban as wrong, but you instill fear in them and not respect. It is like fear of a dictator. I am sorry to say so. Everyone is divided. There is no harmony. Before your ban there was more harmony and unity.

    By enacting the ban, you split the monasteries, split so many families, split regions in Tibet apart, split your disciples from you, split your own gurus from you, split Tibetan Buddhism apart. You have created so much disharmony.

    It is not democratic what you have done to ban a religion within your community. You always talk of tolerance and acceptance and democracy and yet you do not accept and tolerate something different from your beliefs. When people practice Dorje Shugden you ostracize them, ban them from seeing you, ban them from using Tibetan facilities. You know you have done that. There are videos that capture your speech and prove this point. You even had people expelled from monasteries just because they practice Dorje Shugden. Some of the monks you expelled have been in the monastery for over 40 years. Many older monks shed tears because of this.

    Many young educated Tibetans lost confidence in you as they saw the damage the Dorje Shugden ban created and they lose hope. Many have become free thinkers. They reject what you have done. So many people in the west left Buddhism because of the confusion you created with this ban against Dorje Shugden which is immoral.

    You could of had millions of people who practice Dorje Shugden to support, love and follow you, but you scared them away. They are hurt and very disappointed. They loved you and respected you deeply before the ban. It has been 60 years and you have failed to get Tibet back. Your biggest failure is not getting Tibet back after 57 years in exile. Now you are begging China to allow you to return to Tibet to the disappointment of thousands of people who fought for a free Tibet believing in you. So many self-immolated for a free Tibet and now you want Tibet to be a part of China with no referendum from Tibetans. Just like a dictator, you decide on your own. It was your government and you that lost Tibet in the first place. Your policies and style of doing things do not benefit Tibet and Buddhism. You have been the sole ruler of Tibet your whole life and you still have not gotten our country of Tibet back for us. Our families and us are separated. Yet you create more pain by creating a ban to further divide people. Please have compassion.

    No other Buddhist leader has banned or condemned any religion except for you. It looks very bad. You are a Nobel laureate and this is not fitting of a laureate. You should unite people and not separate them by religious differences.

    You said Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi did not do right to the Rohingya people in Myanmar due to religious differences, but you are doing the same thing to the Shugden Buddhists within your own society. There is a parallel in this. You separate the Shugden Buddhists from the others in Tibetan society.

    You have lost so many people who would have loved and supported you. You have lost so much support around the world. The Shugden Buddhists who love you number in the millions. When you are fast losing support from governments and private people, it will not do you well to lose more.

    After you are passed away in the future, the rift you created between the Dorje Shugden and non-Dorje Shugden people will remain for a while and that will be your legacy. Disharmony. You will be remembered for this. Not as a hero but a disharmony creator.

    Dorje Shugden will spread and further grow, but you will be no more as you are a human. No one wishes you bad and in fact we hope you have a long and healthy life, but we have lost so much hope and have so much despair because of you. All the hundreds of Dorje Shugden lamas, tulkus and geshes are maturing and there are hundreds of Dorje Shugden monasteries in Tibet who will not give up Dorje Shugden. You have made a mistake. These hundreds of teachers and teachers to be will spread Dorje Shugden further in the future.

    The gurus that gave us Dorje Shugden as a spiritual practice and you have called these holy gurus wrong and they are mistaken in giving us Dorje Shugden. How can you insult our gurus whom we respect so much? If they can be wrong, then you can be wrong. Then all gurus can be wrong. So no one needs to listen to any guru? You have created this trend. It is not healthy. Your own gurus practiced Dorje Shugden their whole lives. Your own gurus were exemplary and highly learned.

    Dalai Lama you have created so much pain with this ban against so many people due to religion. You are ageing fast. Are you going to do anything about it or stay stubborn, hard and un-moving. You show a smile and preach peace and harmony wherever you go. But will you do the same to your own people? Please rectify the wrong you have done. Please before it is too late. You can create harmony again or you can pass away in the future with this legacy of peace. May you live long and think carefully and admit what was a mistake in having this unethical ban against Dorje Shugden religion.

  34. Why doesn’t the United States and its allies end Refugee Status for the useless Tibetans? They have been refugees for 60 years now and don’t tell me they still cannot get their lives back in order?

    Tibetans really know how to put on a good show and use people, take their money and do nothing in return.

    Trump and Allies Seek End to Refugee Status for Millions of Palestinians
    In internal emails, Jared Kushner advocated a “sincere effort to disrupt” the U.N.’s relief agency for Palestinians.
    Jared Kushner, U.S. President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior advisor, has quietly been trying to do away with the U.N. relief agency that has provided food and essential services to millions of Palestinian refugees for decades, according to internal emails obtained by Foreign Policy.
    His initiative is part of a broader push by the Trump administration and its allies in Congress to strip these Palestinians of their refugee status in the region and take their issue off the table in negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians, according to both American and Palestinian officials. At least two bills now making their way through Congress address the issue.
    Kushner, whom Trump has charged with solving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, has been reluctant to speak publicly about any aspect of his Middle East diplomacy. A peace plan he’s been working on with other U.S. officials for some 18 months has been one of Washington’s most closely held documents.
    But his position on the refugee issue and his animus toward the U.N. Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) is evident in internal emails written by Kushner and others earlier this year.
    “It is important to have an honest and sincere effort to disrupt UNRWA,” Kushner wrote about the agency in one of those emails, dated Jan. 11 and addressed to several other senior officials, including Trump’s Middle East peace envoy, Jason Greenblatt.
    “This [agency] perpetuates a status quo, is corrupt, inefficient and doesn’t help peace,” he wrote.
    The United States has helped fund UNRWA since it was formed in 1949 to provide relief for Palestinians displaced from their homes following the establishment of the State of Israel and ensuing international war. Previous administrations have viewed the agency as a critical contributor to stability in the region.
    But many Israel supporters in the United States today see UNRWA as part of an international infrastructure that has artificially kept the refugee issue alive and kindled hopes among the exiled Palestinians that they might someday return home—a possibility Israel flatly rules out.
    Critics of the agency point in particular to its policy of granting refugee status not just to those who fled Mandatory Palestine 70 years ago but to their descendants as well—accounting that puts the refugee population at around 5 million, nearly one-third of whom live in camps across Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, the West Bank, and Gaza.
    By trying to unwind UNRWA, the Trump administration appears ready to reset the terms of the Palestinian refugee issue in Israel’s favor—as it did on another key issue in December, when Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
    In the same January email, Kushner wrote: “Our goal can’t be to keep things stable and as they are. … Sometimes you have to strategically risk breaking things in order to get there.”
    Kushner raised the refugee issue with officials in Jordan during a visit to the region in June, along with Special Representative for International Negotiations Jason Greenblatt. According to Palestinian officials, he pressed the Jordan to strip its more than 2 million registered Palestinians of their refugee status so that UNRWA would no longer need to operate there.
    “[Kushner said] the resettlement has to take place in the host countries and these governments can do the job that UNRWA was doing,” said Hanan Ashrawi, a member of Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization.
    She said the Trump administration wanted rich Arab Gulf states to cover the costs Jordan might incur in the process.
    “They want to take a really irresponsible, dangerous decision and the whole region will suffer,” Ashrawi said.
    Saeb Erekat, the Palestinians’ chief negotiator, told reporters in June that Kushner’s delegation had said it was ready to stop funding UNRWA altogether and instead direct the money—$300 million annually—to Jordan and other countries that host Palestinian refugees.
    “All this is actually aimed at liquidating the issue of the Palestinian refugees,” hesaid.
    The White House declined to comment on the record for this story. A senior executive branch official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said U.S. policy regarding the U.N.’s Palestinian refugee program “has been under frequent evaluation and internal discussion. The administration will announce its policy in due course.”
    Jordanian officials in New York and Washington did not respond to queries about the initiative.
    Kushner and Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, both proposed ending funding for UNRWA back in January. But the State Department, the Pentagon, and the U.S. intelligence community all opposed the idea, fearing in part that it could fuel violence in the region.
    The following week, the State Department announced that that United States would cut the first $125 million installment of its annual payment to UNRWA by more than half, to $60 million.
    “UNRWA has been threatening us for six months that if they don’t get a check they will close schools. Nothing has happened,” Kushner wrote in the same email.
    State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert said at the time that the U.S. had no intention of eliminating funding for Palestinian refugees, and that it was taking time to explore ways to reform UNRWA and to convince other countries to help Washington shoulder the financial burden of aiding the Palestinians.
    But the following day, Victoria Coates, a senior advisor to Greenblatt, sent an email to the White House’s national security staff indicating that the White House was mulling a way to eliminate the U.N.’s agency for Palestinian refugees.
    “UNRWA should come up with a plan to unwind itself and become part of the UNHCR by the time its charter comes up again in 2019,” Coates wrote.
    She noted that the proposal was one of a number of “spitball ideas that I’ve had that are also informed by some thoughts I’ve picked up from Jared, Jason and Nikki.”
    Other ideas included a suggestion that the U.N. relief agency be asked to operate on a month-to-month budget and devise “a plan to remove all anti-Semitism from educational materials.”
    The ideas seemed to track closely with proposals Israel has been making for some time.
    “We believe that UNRWA needs to pass from the world as it is an organization that advocates politically against Israel and perpetuates the Palestinian refugee problem,” said Elad Strohmayer, a spokesman for the Israeli Embassy in Washington.
    Strohmayer said that Palestinians are the only population that is able to transfer its refugee status down through generations.
    The claim, though long advanced by Israel, is not entirely true.
    In an internal report from 2015, the State Department noted that the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees “recognizes descendants of refugees as refugees for purposes of their operations.” The report, which was recently declassified, said the descendants of Afghan, Bhutanese, Burmese, Somali, and Tibetan refugees are all recognized by the U.N. as refugees themselves.
    Of the roughly 700,000 original Palestinian refugees, only a few tens of thousands are still alive, according to estimates.
    The push to deny the status to most Palestinians refugees is also gaining traction in Congress.
    Last week, Rep. Doug Lamborn, a Republican from Colorado, introduced a bill that would limit the United States to assisting only the original refugees. Most savings in U.N. contributions would be directed to the U.S. Agency for International Development, the United States’ principal international development agency. But USAID is currently constrained by the Taylor Force Act, which restricts the provision of humanitarian assistance to the Palestinian Authority until it ends a policy of providing aid to families of fallen terrorists.
    “Instead of resettling Palestinian refugees displaced as a result of the Arab-Israeli Conflict of 1948, UNRWA provides aid to those they define as Palestinian refugees until there is a solution they deem acceptable to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict,” Lamborn’s bill states.
    “This policy does not help resettle the refugees from 1948 but instead maintains a refugee population in perpetuity.”
    A congressional aide familiar with the legislation said its intent isn’t to gut UNRWA funding, but redirect assistance to descendants through USAID.
    “The people that are suffering should still get assistance, but through appropriately defined humanitarian channels and aid programs,” the aide said.
    Similarly, Sen. James Lankford, (R-Okla.), has drafted legislation that would redirect U.S. funding away from UNRWA and to other local and international agencies.
    The bill, which has not yet officially been introduced, would require the U.S. secretary of state certify by 2020 that the United Nations has ended its recognition of Palestinian descendants as refugees.
    “The United Nations should provide assistance to the Palestinians in a way that makes clear that the United Nations does not recognize the vast majority of Palestinians currently registered by UNRWA as refugees deserving refugee status,” reads a draft obtained by Foreign Policy.
    Previous U.S. administrations have maintained that the vast majority of Palestinian refugees will ultimately have to be absorbed in a new Palestinian state or naturalized in the countries that have hosted them for generations.
    But the fate of the refugee issue was expected to be agreed to as part of a comprehensive peace pact that resulted in the establishment of a Palestinian state.
    “It’s very clear that the overarching goal here is to eliminate the Palestinian refugees as an issue by defining them out of existence,” said Lara Friedman, the president of the Foundation for Middle East Peace.
    “This isn’t going to make peace any easier. It’s going to make it harder.” Trump and Allies Seek End to Refugee Status for Millions of Palestinians (1)

  35. Supreme Court of India JUSTICE Mr. MARKANDEY KATJU (RETD) writes that Tibet is much better under the Chinese than it was under the lamas who only wanted to make the populace slaves. It was feudal and it will never return to the backwardness again.

    Time has come to acknowledge that Tibet has vastly improved under Chinese rule
    JUSTICE MARKANDEY KATJU (RETD) | 12 August, 2018
    From a terribly poor state hinged on a feudal system, Tibet has modernised and grows faster than the rest of China
    This article has been prompted by Jyoti Malhotra’s article in ThePrint ‘Tibetan government quietly changed its PM’s designation. India won’t be unhappy about it‘.
    China’s annexation of Tibet in 1959, ousting the Dalai Lama, had attracted it worldwide criticism. The Dalai Lama fled and was granted asylum in India, where he set up a government-in-exile with its headquarters in Dharamshala.
    The Chinese claim Tibet on the grounds that it has been part of the country since the Yuan dynasty of the 13th century, which is disputed by the government-in-exile. But let us leave this that matter aside.
    The more important question is whether Chinese rule has benefited Tibet.
    The answer is that it undoubtedly has. As the Reuters’ Ben Blanchard writes: “Today Tibet is richer and more developed than it has ever been, its people healthier, more literate, better dressed and fed”.
    Although Ben goes on to argue that this development masks “a deep sense of unhappiness among many Tibetans”, I will disagree. How can anyone be unhappy if s/he is healthier, better fed and better clothed?
    Under the rule of the Dalai Lamas (Buddhist priests), the people of Tibet were terribly poor, almost entirely illiterate, and lived like feudal serfs.
    Today, Tibet presents a totally different picture. The illiteracy rate in Tibet has gone down from 95 per cent in the 1950s to 42 per cent in 2000. It has modern schools, universities, engineering and medical colleges, modern hospitals, freeways, supermarkets, fast food restaurants, mobile stores and apartment buildings. The capital Lhasa is like any other modern city.
    While the economic growth in the rest of China has slowed down to about 7 per cent, Tibet has had a 10 per cent growth rate in the last two decades.
    Tibet has huge mineral wealth, which was only awaiting Chinese technology to be tapped. Nowadays, it has numerous hydro and solar power plants and industries running with Chinese help.
    Tibetan literature is flourishing, contrary to claims that the Chinese want to crush Tibetan culture.
    Of course, now the lamas cannot treat their people as slaves.
    The so-called ‘government-in-exile’, of which Lobsang Sangay claims to be the President, is a fake organisation, funded by foreign countries. They only want to restore the feudal Tibet, ruled by the reactionary lamas, something which will never happen.
    The writer is a former judge of the Supreme Court of India

  36. While the government of Nepal has framed a policy to tighten the noose around non-governmental organisations, they have welcomed 30 Chinese NGOs to enter the country. These NGOs will penetrate the country’s social sector at the grassroots level. This is the first time such a large number of Chinese NGOs have entered Nepal at one time. Nepal is increasingly open to Chinese influence, a sign that ties between both countries are strengthening, while India’s influence is being reduced. The time has passed for India’s monopoly to remain uninterrupted in Nepal as opportunities to engage with China are being welcomed.

    30 Chinese NGOs all set to work in Nepal
    Kathmandu, July 30
    At a time when the government has framed a policy to tighten the noose around non-governmental organisations, 30 Chinese NGOs have entered Nepal to penetrate the country’s social sector and the grassroots.
    The Social Welfare Council Nepal and China NGO Network for International Exchanges, an umbrella body of Chinese NGOs, have signed a memorandum of understanding to enable Chinese NGOs to work in Nepal. The agreement was signed yesterday between SWCN Member Secretary Dilli Prasad Bhatt and CNIE General Secretary Zhu Rui in the presence of Minister of Women, Children and Senior Citizen Tham Maya Thapa and Chinese Deputy Minister of External Affairs Wang Yajun.
    The agreement has paved the way for the first batch of 30 Chinese NGOs to work in Nepal for a period of three years. Their contract will be extended based on the consent of SWCN and CNIE. Representatives of these 30 Chinese NGOs were also present during yesterday’s signing ceremony. They have agreed to work in partnership with local NGOs to implement their programmes and projects.
    The Chinese NGOs are eyeing areas such as livelihood, healthcare, education, skill-based training, community development and disaster management. This is the first time such a large number of Chinese NGOs has entered Nepal at one time. The Chinese assistance so far in Nepal has largely been limited to development of infrastructure projects. But the entry of these NGOs indicates China is keen on making its presence felt in Nepal’s social sector and the grassroots, which, till date, have remained domains of the West and countries such as Japan and India.
    The MoU signed between SWCN and CNIE states that Chinese NGOs will be mobilised for ‘the benefit of needy Nepalis and to enhance ties between China and Nepal through people-to-people support programmes’.
    “The Chinese NGOs will abide by the law of Nepal in its entirety while carrying out development cooperation in Nepal,” says the MoU, adding, “Chinese NGOs will submit programmes to the SWCN to carry out development activities in partnership with Nepali NGOs and SWCN in line with plans and policies of the government of Nepal.”
    The MoU was signed at a time when the government has drafted the National Integrity Policy to limit activities of NGOs and INGOs, as some of them were found ‘trying to break communal harmony and proselytising Nepalis’. There were also concerns that high administrative cost of many NGOs and INGOs was preventing money from reaching the real beneficiaries. The policy clearly states that NGOs and INGOs cannot spend more than specified amount under administrative and consultant headings. They will also be barred from working against Nepal’s interests, culture and communal harmony and conducting activities to promote their religious, social or other agenda, adds the policy.
    Around 48,000 NGOs are currently registered in Nepal, of which only 1,600 have been receiving funds from INGOs, as per SWCN. The SWCN has directed INGOs and NGOs to spend 60 per cent of the budget to generate tangible results, while the remaining can be used to cover administrative costs and organise training, meetings and seminars.

  37. The cracks in Tibetan society are starting to show, and it is now coming to the attention of local Indians who have all but identified the Tibetan leadership as the source of the divisions. According to this author, disunity amongst the Tibetans is now creating problems for Indian law enforcement agencies, and this disunity may culminate in young Tibetans holding silent grudges against their host country. It is incredible that after six decades of generosity from India, Indians are now facing the very real possibility Tibetans can be ungrateful towards India. The Tibetan leadership totally failed to impart positive values upon their exiled community, like gratitude for those kindest to them and the need to repay these kindnesses with real, tangible results. It’s also very unlikely that the Tibetan leadership will now start to do this, after six decades of failing to do so. Indians need to realise this, and see that there is no benefit for their nation to align themselves with the Tibetan leadership, and there never will be.
    Tibetan disunity not in India’s interest
    John S. Shilshi
    Updated: August 7, 2018, 11:00 AM
    India is home to the Dalai Lama and an estimated 120,000 Tibetan refugees. Though this humanitarian gesture on India’s part comes at the cost of risking New Delhi’s relations with China, India has never wavered in ensuring that Tibetans live with dignity and respect. Notified settlements across the country were made available so that they can live as independently as possible and practice Tibetan religion and culture. They are also allowed to establish centres of higher learning in Tibetan Buddhism. As a result, several reputed Buddhist institutes came up in Karnataka, and in the Indian Himalayan belt. In what may be termed as a gesture well reciprocated, and because of the respect and influence His Holiness the Dalai Lama commands, the Tibetan diaspora also lived as a peaceful community, rarely creating problems for India’s law enforcement agencies.
    The situation, however, changed from 2000 onwards when unity amongst Tibetans suffered some setback due to developments like the Karmapa succession controversy and the controversy over worshiping of Dorje Shugden. In a unique case of politics getting the better of religion, two senior monks of the Karma kargyue sect of Tibetan Buddhism, Tai Situ Rinpoche and late Shamar Rinpoche, developed serious differences after the demise of Rangjung Rigpe Dorje, the 16th Karmapa, in 1981. This animosity ultimately led to emergence of two 17th Karmapa candidates in the early nineties. While Tai Situ Rinpoche identified and recognised UghyanThinley Dorje, late Shamar Rinpoche anointed Thinley Thaye Dorje as his Karmapa candidate. Enthronement of their respective protégés at the Rumtek Monastery in Sikkim, the supreme seat of the Karma Kargue linage, being their primary objective, both started indulging in activities monks normally are expected to, and bitterness spewed against each other.
    The bitter rivalry assumed a new dimension when UghyenThinley Dorje suddenly appeared in India in January 2000. The competition became fiercer and hectic political lobbying, never known in the history of Tibetan Buddhism on Indian soil, became common place. Apart from pulling strings at their disposal in Sikkim as well as in the power corridors of New Delhi, these senior monks spat against each other with allegations and counter allegations, widening the gaps between their supporters. His Holiness the Dalai Lama, choosing to favour one of the candidates—a decision many Tibet watchers felt was ill-timed—had also limited possible scope of rapprochement. Hence, the Karma Kargyue followers are now vertically divided, while the camps are dragged into a long drawn legal battle.
    Another development that unfortunately split the Tibetans is the controversy over Shugden worshipping, which again is an internal matter of the Gelugpa sect, to which the Dalai Lama belongs. It erupted as a result of the Dalai Lama urging Tibetans to refrain from worshiping Dorje Shugden, a deity believed to be a protector, according to Tibetan legend. Shugden practitioners, who felt offended by the call, describe it as an attack on freedom of religion, a right, which Dalai Lama himself tirelessly fought for. On the other hand, die hard Dalai Lama followers perceived the questioning of the decision as one challenging the wisdom of the Dalai Lama and mounted massive pressure on Dorje Shugden practitioners to relent, with some even demolishing the statues of the deity. The rivalry ultimately led to split in two Gelug monasteries in Karnataka, and Serpom and Shar Garden monasteries in Bylakupe and Mundgod respectively came under the control of Shugden followers. The bitterness associated with the split is exemplified by the fact that till today, members of these monasteries are treated as some sort of outcasts by the others. Thus, for the first time, the Tibetan diaspora in India gave birth to sections opposed to the Dalai Lama, with spillover effects in Tibet and elsewhere.
    For India, with a fragile internal security profile, a divided Tibetan population on its soil is not good news. It has several long-term implications. It is common knowledge that China considers Dalai Lama as a secessionist, one plotting to divide their country. The latter’s claim of “all that Tibetans were asking for, was a status of genuine autonomy within the Constitution of the Peoples’ Republic of China”, had fallen into deaf ears. China also considers him as someone who plays to the Indian tune to tickle China. Therefore, at a time when China has successfully shrunk the Dalai Lama’s space internationally, India continuing to extend the usual space for him is viewed as complicity. Sharp reaction from China when he was allowed to visit Arunachal Pradesh in April 2017, is a recent example. Such being the delicate nature of India-China relations on matters and issues concerning Tibetans, India can hardly afford to ignore the division within the diaspora. Past experience of dubious elements from Tibet having succeeded in infiltrating the Central Tibetan Administration, including the security wing, should be a warning.
    It is also time India understands the reason behind Tibetans seeking Indian passports, despite an existing arrangement for issue of Identity Certificates, which is passport equivalent. Some had even successfully taken recourse to legal remedy on the issue, and left the government of India red-faced. These changing moods should not be viewed as desires by Tibetans to become Indian citizens. They are triggered by the pathetic state of affairs associated with issuing of Identity Certificates, where delays in most cases are anything between six months to one year. Early streamlining of the process will drastically reduce their desire to hold Indian passport. It will also remove the wrongly perceived notion among some educated Tibetan youth, that the cumbersome process was a ploy by India to confine them in this country. While India should not shy from requesting the Dalai Lama to use his good offices to end all differences within the community in the interest of India’s internal security, it will also be necessary to ensure that young Tibetans do not nurse a silent grudge against the very country they called their second home.

  38. Although the Dalai Lama has offered an apology, the Arunachal Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) still expressed their disappointment over his controversial comment on Nehru, the Arunachal Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC). Dalai Lama called Nehru self-centred.

    The Congress said Dalai Lama being a foreigner should shun and refrain from interfering in the internal as well as external affairs of India.

    Dalai Lama should abstain from imparting controversial information to students: Arunachal Congress
    Dalai Lama should know that a spiritual leader like him is shouldering great expectation: APCC
    | DAMIEN LEPCHA | ITANAGAR | August 12, 2018 9:58 pm
    disappointment over the recent statement made by Tibetan Spiritual Leader the 14th Dalai Lama in which he called Jawaharlal Nehru, the former Prime Minister of India as “self-centered” and the one responsible for parting India and Pakistan.
    “Although Dalai Lama expressed regret over his controversial comment, the APCC is extremely thwarted by it. A Tibetan spiritual leader calling names to an Indian leader who sweated most to keep him and his followers safe from Chinese aggression is simply not acceptable. Today, India is home to lakhs of Tibetan refugees who are living in 37 settlements and 70 scattered communities across different states of India,” APCC vice-president Minkir Lollen said in a statement on Sunday.
    “Dalai Lama may have forgotten that India provided a beam of light and hope to Tibetans remaining in Chinese-dominated Tibet and in the neighbouring Chinese provinces politically cut off from the Tibetan heart land. All these happened only because India has great leaders like Gandhi and Nehru who took the responsibility of social burden to shelter thousands of persecuted Tibetans then in 1959,” Lollen added.
    Minkir said Dalai Lama should know that a spiritual leader like him is shouldering great expectation, hope and trust of millions on record and the same are watching his contribution towards the mankind.
    “In such circumstances, Dalai Lama should abstain from imparting partial and controversial information to the students who are the torch bearer of the nation,” the Congress said.
    Further stating that the statement of the spiritual leader could be a politically motivated one and made with an effort to approach Prime Minister Narendra Modi for survival of his continuation in the country, the Congress said Dalai Lama being a foreigner should shun and refrain from interfering in the internal as well as external affairs of India.

  39. The Dalai Lama is called the man of peace sometimes, he always preaches about peace and harmony. He encourages people who are having conflicts and disputes to solve their problems by having a dialogue. My question is, why is he not having a dialogue with the Dorje Shugden followers?

    The Dorje Shugden ban was imposed almost 20 years ago. Dorje Shugden followers are segregated and isolated. The Dalai Lama made Dorje Shugden followers his enemy, he doesn’t allow Dorje Shugden to attend his teachings. Why is he showing so much dislike for Dorje Shugden followers? Isn’t he the emanation of the Buddha of Compassion? Shouldn’t the Dalai Lama be compassionate to Dorje Shugden followers as well?

    Apparently, the Dalai Lama has a double standard. To other people, he is very accepting and loving. He advises people to have a round table meeting to talk about issues and to resolve the issue. But when it comes to Dorje Shugden followers, he just ignores them. He doesn’t want to have a dialogue with them. Why?

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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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