The Dalai Lama Ends The Dorje Shugden Ban

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].
 


 

By: Shashi Kei

During a teaching in January this year, the Dalai Lama very casually overturned the ban on the practice of Dorje Shugden which he had instigated over twenty-three years ago. It was easy to miss the significance of what he said because of the incidental manner in which the Dalai Lama addressed the subject. However, to those attuned to the subtleties of the Dalai Lama’s manner of speaking, it was clear that the campaign which the Tibetan leadership had unleashed against Shugden Buddhists was at an end.

When the Dalai Lama decided to smother the practice of the Dharma Protector Dorje Shugden, he was well aware of the power of his words over the Tibetan people. They regard him as a Buddha and every word he utters, even mere suggestions, are taken as decrees. And so, in 1996 when the Dalai Lama gave what he termed an ‘advice’ against the practice of the Dharmapala Dorje Shugden, the Tibetan exile government known as the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA) immediately took aggressive measures that culminated in laws condemning the religious practice as a “crime against humanity”.

Dorje Shugden on Tibet.net: The Assembly of Tibetan People’s Deputies’ Resolutions (June 1996). Click to enlarge.

A prominent section of the CTA’s official website was dedicated to condemning Shugden Buddhists, indicating that it was official policy to oppose the belief. Within that section, the CTA posted anti-Dorje Shugden Parliamentary Resolutions, government notices and a slew of articles that demonized the deity. Even the failure of the Tibetan people to regain their homeland was attributed to the practice of Dorje Shugden. To further spur the Tibetan people to turn against the ancient practice, the Dalai Lama claimed that worshipping Dorje Shugden would shorten his life. Ironically, the same website boasted of the CTA’s democratic values and its guarantee of religious freedom for all Tibetan people.

The Dalai Lama’s global influence meant that the campaign against Shugden believers extended well beyond the Tibetan exile community in India. Non-Tibetan Dalai Lama supporters joined in the anti-Shugden sentiment in the mistaken belief that the Dalai Lama was the most competent Buddhist monk in the world and, therefore, uniquely qualified to endorse or discredit the validity of any Buddhist practice. Others fell for the CTA’s ruse that framed the Shugden practice as a political ploy of the Chinese government aimed at undermining the Dalai Lama. It was a sly but extremely effective scheme.

In short, the Dalai Lama and the CTA painted the Dorje Shugden practice as categorically evil and to be avoided at all costs. There was no misunderstanding about this – the Dalai Lama repeatedly reminded the Tibetan people of how the practice would harm him and ruin their chances of regaining their country. Scores of sycophantic pro-Dalai Lama writers and monks ranted about how evil Dorje Shugden was. Some, like the FPMT’s Dagri Rinpoche (who has been arrested by Indian police and is now under investigation for decades of sexual harassment against nuns and female practitioners), made a grandstanding show of support for the Dalai Lama by leading powerful rituals to supposedly kill this ‘demon’. Under the directive of the Dalai Lama, Shugden-worshipping monks were expelled from their monasteries. This sentiment dominated the Tibetan socio-political landscape from the mid-1990s when the Dalai Lama’s campaign against Dorje Shugden started.

So, it came as a complete surprise when the Dalai Lama casually remarked in his January 2020 teaching that it was fine to worship Dorje Shugden as a birth deity (kye lha) or a land god (yul lha). Although the Dalai Lama persisted in questioning the historic status of Dorje Shugden as the Protector of Lama Tsongkapa’s lineage, his consent for the worship of the deity was a drastic reversal of official Tibetan policy that had stood for over two decades. The Dalai Lama had just ended a ban on the practice of Dorje Shugden that the Tibetan leadership had pursued aggressively since 1996.

Some have suggested that the Dalai Lama made an error and did not, in fact, intend to lift the prohibition on Dorje Shugden. However, there were three other hints to indicate that the Tibetan leader’s attitude towards Dorje Shugden has actually changed:

  1. The Dalai Lama raised the subject on his own. There were no new developments on the Dorje Shugden front that made it necessary for him to address this very sensitive issue. Nor was his mention of Dorje Shugden in response to questions about the subject. So, it is clear that the Dalai Lama intended to convey a point specifically with regard to the Shugden issue.
  2. The Dalai Lama referred to the deity by the proper name, ‘Dorje Shugden’, which means ‘the adamantine force that protects the Gelug’. For over twenty-three years, the Dalai Lama had called the deity by the derogatory name ‘Dolgyal’, which translates to ‘angry spirit of the river Dol’. By addressing the deity respectfully on this occasion, the Dalai Lama signaled that it is time to stop disparaging Dorje Shugden.
  3. The Dalai Lama’s tone was amiable and gentle when he spoke about Dorje Shugden. This, too, was a departure from the scathing, derisive manner which the Dalai Lama had previously employed to refer to ‘Dolgyal’ whenever he wanted to perpetuate public animosity against Dorje Shugden.

The prominent ‘Dolgyal’ banner on the Tibetan government’s official website has been removed since the Dalai Lama announced that it is acceptable for Dorje Shugden to be worshiped. Whilst the section that condemns Dorje Shugden still exists, it has been discreetly moved to an inconspicuous section. Click to enlarge.

We must remember that the Dalai Lama is a master politician and an eloquent orator. He is deliberate in his actions and extremely masterful in his ability to move an audience with mere words. Without any military or economic might to speak of, the Dalai Lama has been able to keep world leaders and citizens focused on the Tibetan issue for over sixty years and tip the balance against China, an extremely powerful rising force. A grandmaster such as the Dalai Lama would not carelessly and accidentally revoke a ban on a supposedly evil activity that harms the Tibetan cause, puts his own life at peril and jeopardizes the sanctity of the Buddhist religion.

Perhaps the best evidence that the Dalai Lama intended to end the persecution of Shugden believers is the sudden disappearance of the prominent ‘Dolgyal’ banner on the CTA’s website. That banner served as an ongoing official warning for Tibetans to not practice Dorje Shugden and to not associate with Shugden Buddhists. The simultaneous disappearance of the banner indicates that the Dalai Lama’s words were no mistake.

Given the seriousness of the Dorje Shugden ban, the large number of lives it affected, and the seismic consequences it had on the Tibetan Buddhist community worldwide, one would have expected the Tibetan leadership to make a very public announcement about this drastic change of stance on such an important issue. However, this is not the Tibetan way, especially when it comes to the 14th Dalai Lama.

It is not in the 14th Dalai Lama’s nature to admit that he has made a mistake. There have been many instances that attest to this. One clear case was the Dalai Lama’s overreach of his authority to endorse Ogyen Trinley Dorje as the 17th Karmapa, overriding the protocol of the Karma Kagyu sect. It was not the Dalai Lama’s right to interfere in the spiritual affairs of the Karma Kagyu, whose tradition precedes the Dalai Lama line.

His Holiness the 14th Shamarpa who pointed out the Dalai Lama’s error in meddling with the recognition of the 17th Karmapa. Click to enlarge.

The 14th Shamarpa Mipham Chokyi Lodro, the second-highest ranking lama of the Karma Kagyu sect pointed out the Dalai Lama’s error, which had turned the Karma Kagyu on its head. The Dalai Lama should have acted immediately to correct his mistake after the Shamarpa pointed it out. It would have saved the Karma Kagyu from the carnage that it suffered for twenty-seven years as the result of the Dalai Lama’s unwarranted meddling. But the Dalai Lama did not. Instead, the Dalai Lama reportedly replied that he had already made the decision and could not withdraw his endorsement.

This episode indicates that it would be completely out of character for the Dalai Lama to publicly announce that he made a mistake with regards to Dorje Shugden. So, instead of officially overturning the Tibetan leadership’s ruling on the Shugden practice, the Dalai Lama suggested an exception to the ban on the worship of Dorje Shugden that renders the prohibition against the practice practically meaningless.

The classification of Dorje Shugden as kye lha or yul lha is a relatively insignificant detail. The list of gods and Buddhas in the Tibetan Buddhist pantheon is inexhaustible and covers lhas or gods who are often accepted as emanations of enlightened beings. The Great 5th Dalai Lama wrote rituals popularizing the inclusion of worldly gods, including yul lhas in formal prayers. Lamas of all Tibetan Buddhist sects over the centuries did the same. So, to regard Dorje Shugden as a kye lha or yul lha is to restore the practice as an acceptable part of mainstream Tibetan Buddhism.

What could have led to this sudden, albeit rather coy, reversal? No one can say for sure. To do so would require insight into why the Dalai Lama implemented the ban to begin with. This is problematic because the Tibetan leadership has never actually presented any real evidence or sound reasons to justify its infringement on the religious freedom of Shugden Buddhists.

Over the decades, a number of postulations have emerged. The Dorje Shugden conflict has been said to be:

  • A scheme of the Dalai Lama’s clique to consolidate power by forcing all the different Tibetan Buddhist schools to merge into a single one under the Dalai Lama, achieved by weakening opponents to the design;
  • A strategy to distract the restless Tibetan refugee populace from focusing on the Tibetan leadership’s failure to deliver on decades of promises;
  • A ploy to create chaos within the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) to gain bargaining power with the Chinese government;
  • The machinations of rival sects jealous of Gelug supremacy and who had the ear of the Dalai Lama.

Click to enlarge

Whatever the Dalai Lama’s reasons were to suppress the Dorje Shugden practice, it appeared on the surface to be a success when it was actually a complete disaster. Outwardly, some Tibetans obeyed the Dalai Lama’s persecution of Shugden Buddhists because they believed in the absurd accusations. Most did so to avoid being accused of going against the Dalai Lama, which is typically hazardous. Then, there were those who seized the opportunity to curry favor with the Dalai Lama establishment by supporting the Shugden oppression. But behind closed doors, many Tibetans and confused supporters of the Tibetan cause were beginning to lose faith in him.

Gyalchen Dorje Shugden was, after all, a four-hundred-year-old practice advocated by the greatest luminaries and pandits of the Gelug and Sakya schools, including the Dalai Lama’s tutors. Also, regardless of how the Dalai Lama personally felt about the practice, isn’t the Tibetan leadership a democracy that upholds the basic principles of human rights, including the right to worship? If so, then the oppression of Shugden Buddhists’ rights go against the very essence of freedom and democracy.

Time became the most proficient interlocutor for the case against the Tibetan leadership’s campaign to eliminate the Dorje Shugden practice. The unpopular religious ban was tolerated because it was believed that doing away with Dorje Shugden would strengthen the Tibetan people’s efforts to regain their country. Instead, the Tibetan cause deteriorated even further as the Tibetan leadership became embroiled in a series of internal rivalries, corruption charges and sex scandals.

The Karmapa Trinley Thaye Dorje (left) whom the Tibetan leadership did not endorse and the Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje (right) who is the Dalai Lama’s choice of Karmapa, in a show of unity, a subtle but firm message to the Tibetan government.

In the meantime, the Tibetan exile populace languished. Dwindling numbers in the refugee settlements indicate that most no longer believe in the Tibetan leadership’s ability to adequately provide for them, let alone take on the powerful Chinese government.

The Dalai Lama’s subtle reversal of the ban on the practice of Dorje Shugden may well be a silent acknowledgment that he made a mistake. Or, it could be the Dalai Lama’s attempt to curb the speed with which his power is diminishing. Besides countless failed promises to return the Tibetan people to their homeland and failure to provide the necessary economic infrastructure for exiled Tibetans to sustain meaningful livelihoods, the Dalai Lama also miscalculated the strength of his dominance, not only over his own Gelug sect but also over the other Tibetan Buddhist schools.

The 17th Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje, who was endorsed by the Dalai Lama, absconded and closed ranks with the rival Karmapa, Trinley Thaye Dorje, who was never acknowledged by the Dalai Lama and CTA. The coming together of the two Karma Kagyu leaders delivered a very firm message to Dharamsala – that the Karma Kagyu no longer accepts the Dalai Lama’s self-proclaimed authority over them. This is confirmed by their snub of the Dalai Lama in subsequent major religious ceremonies such as the recognition of Karmapa Trinley Thaye Dorje’s newborn son as the reincarnation of Shamarpa Mipham Chokyi Lodro, who had passed into clear light not long after his confrontation with the Dalai Lama. In the past sixty years, such an important event would only be regarded as having legitimacy if it carried the Dalai Lama’s seal of approval. This time, the Dalai Lama was not consulted and, in fact, not even invited to attend the ceremony.

Going against Nyingma tradition, Dudjom Rinpoche was appointed as the supreme head of the Nyingma sect. He was previously imprisoned by the Tibetan government for not toeing the Tibetan Government’s line.

Other Tibetan Buddhist schools appear to have also taken drastic steps to insulate themselves from any machinations of the Tibetan leadership. The Sakya sect made changes to its succession system. The Nyingmas announced that they would do away with the selection and appointment of a single spiritual leader to preside over the Nyingma sect. That, too, was a subtle but clear rejection of the Dalai Lama’s interference in Nyingma affairs. It was never a Nyingma tradition to have a single spiritual leader until the Dalai Lama appointed one during the period of exile.

The Dalai Lama’s new proclamation on the worship of Dorje Shugden may be lamentably late. Still, it is a welcome step and one that is necessary to heal the deep fracture that has afflicted the holy lineage of Je Tsongkapa. Today, the Gelug sect is still divided into two groups – one that embraces the worship of Dorje Shugden, and another group that condemns the deity as an anti-dharma entity. This division has severely damaged the credibility of the Gelug and confused countless spiritual seekers. Perhaps, it is now time for the Gelug to reconcile.

 

Please support this website by making a donation.
Your contribution goes towards supporting
our work to spread Dorje Shugden across the world.

Related Topics: ,

Share this article
11 total comments on this postSubmit yours
  1. I’m sorry Shashi Kei but I don’t believe the Dalai Lama has lifted his ban on Dorje Shugden.

    Here is a quotes from your article.

    Quote
    During a teaching in January this year, the Dalai Lama very casually overturned the ban on the practice of Dorje Shugden which he had instigated over twenty-three years ago. It was easy to miss the significance of what he said because of the incidental manner in which the Dalai Lama addressed the subject. However, to those attuned to the subtleties of the Dalai Lama’s manner of speaking, it was clear that the campaign which the Tibetan leadership had unleashed against Shugden Buddhists was at an end….

    So, it came as a complete surprise when the Dalai Lama casually remarked in his January 2020 teaching that it was fine to worship Dorje Shugden as a BIRTH deity (kye lha) or a LAND god (yul lha). Although the Dalai Lama persisted in questioning the historic status of Dorje Shugden as the Protector of Lama Tsongkapa’s lineage, his consent for the worship of the deity was a drastic reversal of official Tibetan policy that had stood for over two decades. The Dalai Lama had just ended a ban on the practice of Dorje Shugden that the Tibetan leadership had pursued aggressively since 1996….

    The classification of Dorje Shugden as kye lha or yul lha is a relatively insignificant detail. The list of gods and Buddhas in the Tibetan Buddhist pantheon is inexhaustible and covers lhas or gods who are often accepted as emanations of enlightened beings. The Great 5th Dalai Lama wrote rituals popularizing the inclusion of worldly gods, including yul lhas in formal prayers. Lamas of all Tibetan Buddhist sects over the centuries did the same. So, to regard Dorje Shugden as a kye lha or yul lha is to restore the practice as an acceptable part of mainstream Tibetan Buddhism……
    Unquote

    I’m sorry but I think that all the Dalai Lama was doing was fooling the followers of Dorje Shugden.

    No where does the Dalai Lama state that Dorje Shugden is a Dharmapala and can be practiced as a Dharmapala.

    The Dalai Lama equates Dorje Shugden to a lowly “Birth deity” or a “Land God” and nothing else.

    These are not Dharmapalas just the lowest class of spirits.

    They are NOT EMANATIONS of an enlightened beings.

    The Dalai Lama is not saying that this “Birth” deity or “LAND” God is an emanation of Manjushri or from a lineage of great Tulkus.

    He did all this for the Chinese Government so he could return to Tibet.

    He thought he could trick you and the Chinese Government into thinking he had lifted the BAN so he could return to Tibet.

    Show me where either the Dalai Lama or his CTA have publicly and officially stated that the ban on Dorje Shugden was lifted.

    That Dorje Shugden is an emanation of Manjushri.

    NO WERE!!

    So they took down the Anti Dorje Shugden piece on their site.

    Quote from that article.
    “Perhaps the best evidence that the Dalai Lama intended to end the persecution of Shugden believers is the sudden disappearance of the prominent ‘Dolgyal’ banner on the CTA’s website. That banner served as an ongoing official warning for Tibetans to not practice Dorje Shugden and to not associate with Shugden Buddhists. The simultaneous disappearance of the banner indicates that the Dalai Lama’s words were no mistake.”

    It was all done for show and nothing else.

    There is no statement from the Dalai Lama or the CTA that they were ever WRONG in banning Dorje Shugden.

    Just that you can treat Dorje Shugden as a lowly “Birth” deity or “Land” God and nothing else.

    From that article
    Quote
    “Although the Dalai Lama PERSISTED IN QUESTIONING THE HISTORIC STATUS OF DORJE SHUGDEN AS THE PROTECTOR (DHARMAPALA) of Lama Tsongkapa’s lineage,… ”
    Unquote

    The Dalai Lama persisted in questioning the historic status of Dorje Shugden…. means he is still PUBLICLY DENYING that Dorje Shugden is a Dharmapala, a Protector of the Lama Tsongkapa lineage.

    The Dalai Lama is saying that Dorje Shugden is not a Dharmapala nor that he guards Lama Tsongkapa’s lineage.

    He publicly accepts Dorje Shugden as a lowly spirit and nothing else.

    Please don’t get tricked by the “Master of Lies” the great 14th Dalai Lama.

    I have written numerous articles on this site about all the fake anti Dorje Shugden Tulkus and Oracles the Dalai Lama has created.

    None of these fake Tulkus or Oracles have stated that they now accept the practice of Dorje Shugden as a Dharmapala.

    No anti Dorje Shugden Oracle has gone into trance and has had his Deity (Dharmapala) stated publicly that the practice of Dorje Shugden as a Dharmapala they condemn is now OK.

    These Tulkus and Oracles only accept Dorje Shugden as a very lowly spirit and nothing else.

    Sorry but the Dalai Lama never lifted the BAN on the practice of Dorje Shugden being an emanation of Manjushri or accepts his Tulku lineage.

    If I’m wrong please prove me wrong.

    Pray for the swift return of Tsem Tulku Rinpoche.

    • Dear Harold,

      I get your meaning and I agree. But what I understand from the article is that this is as far as the Dalai Lama can go without outrightly saying that he and the CTA were wrong about banning Dorji Shukden. As the article said, the Dalai Lama will never openly say that he was wrong about anything.

      The Dalai Lama knows he has to stop the persecution against Dorji Shukden for whatever reason, but he also needs to save face.

      Of course Dorji Shukden level is way higher than land or birth deity and yes he is Manjushri. So to say he can be prayed to as these deities is still not correct.

      But this is already the complete opposite to what the Dalai Lama said before. In this way the Dalai Lama kinda reversed his decision on Dorji Shukden and is telling people not to harm people who pray to the protector.

      Personally I am not completely happy with this development but I have to be practical. At least I can openly pray to Dorji Shukden and nobody can know what I am worshipping Dorji Shukden as. Before I cannot even mention the name.

      Bottom like is Dalai Lama’s and his rogue government failed to kill off the practice.

      These days the Dalai Lama is being criticised openly by Tibetans and Indians because now people can see more and more his mistakes.

  2. I didn’t notice anywhere in this article the 14th Dalai Lama inviting all those monks and nuns he expelled from their monasteries to return to them.

    Didn’t notice any statements from either the CTA or their Ministry of Religion that the monks and nuns can return to their previous monasteries.

    No statement from the Dalai Lama saying that Dorje Shugden followers can now start to receive teaching from him. That they are no longer banned from attending his teachings.

    What the Dalai Lama, the CTA and their Ministry of Religion don’t say about Dorje Shugen is louder then what the Dalai Lama said “in a very casual……incidental manner”.

  3. Mr Kei in his article stated;
    Quote
    Perhaps the best evidence that the Dalai Lama intended to end the persecution of Shugden believers is the sudden disappearance of the prominent ‘Dolgyal’ banner on the CTA’s website. That banner served as an ongoing official warning for Tibetans to not practice Dorje Shugden and to not associate with Shugden Buddhists. The simultaneous disappearance of the banner indicates that the Dalai Lama’s words were no mistake.
    Unquote

    Here is a link to the present day website of the Dalai Lama.

    Read what he still professes about Dorje Shugden and the monks and nuns he expelled.

    https://www.dalailama.com/messages/dolgyal-shugden/statements-announcements/response-to-shugden-protestor-allegations

    Quote
    To sum up:
    We respect everyone’s right to express their opinions freely. If the Shugden protestors believe they have legitimate concerns to discuss, we welcome the opportunity to address these in a civilized manner. However, since the professed reasons of the Shugden protestors – that there is a ban and that Tibetan Shugden worshippers are discriminated against – are baseless, many wonder what might be the real motive behind this campaign against His Holiness the Dalai Lama? Is it simply to defame the name of one of the world’s most respected spiritual leaders and the beloved leader of the Tibetan people? What really is behind this current campaign to undermine the Dalai Lama’s efforts to promote peace, human values and inter-religious understanding around the world? Who stands to gain by disparaging the Dalai Lama’s name?…
    Those members who do not wish to abide by the monasteries’ internal regulations have now established their own communities. They were given land, infrastructural facilities, as well as a fair share of monasteries’ assets so that they could establish their own monasteries. Today, two such communities of Shugden worshipping monks – Shar Ganden Ling and Pompor Monastery – exist alongside the mainstream monasteries in the south Indian settlements. These two monasteries are totally free to practise worship of Shugden, while being part of the Tibetan exile community in southern India. This is an important fact anyone can witness on the ground….”

    Those members who do not wish to abide by the monasteries’ internal regulations have now established their own communities. They were given land, infrastructural facilities, as well as a fair share of monasteries’ assets so that they could establish their own monasteries. Today, two such communities of Shugden worshipping monks – Shar Ganden Ling and Pompor Monastery – exist alongside the mainstream monasteries in the south Indian settlements. These two monasteries are totally free to practise worship of Shugden, while being part of the Tibetan exile community in southern India. This is an important fact anyone can witness on the ground.
    Unquote

    You will also find this on his official website by going to his home page, scroll over to “More” and when you click on to it go to the bottom left of the page and you will find “Messages” and you will find Dolgyal(Dorje Shugden.

    This is what you will find.

    Quote
    Messages
    Dolgyal (Shugden)
    SHARE
    STATEMENTS & ANNOUNCEMENTS REGARDING THE DOLGYAL ISSUE
    Clarifying His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s Stand on Dolgyal/Shugden
    His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s Advice Concerning Dolgyal (Shugden)
    In Response to the Shugden Protestors’ Allegations
    New Sources of Information about the Dolgyal / Shugden Issue
    Statement of the German Buddhist Monastic Association (DBO) on the Protests against the Dalai Lama by the International Shugden Community (ISC)?
    SPEECHES AND REMARKS ABOUT DOLGYAL BY HIS HOLINESS THE DALAI LAMA
    Comments about Dolgyal 2015
    Comments about Dolgyal 2014
    Speech During Spring Teachings – 27 March 2006
    Speech to the Second Gelug Conference – 6 December 2000
    Speech to the Second Gelug Conference – 6 December 2000 (continued)
    Concerning Dolgyal or Shugden With Reference to the Views of Past Masters and Other Related Matters
    Concerning Dolgyal or Shugden With Reference to the Views of Past Masters and Other Related Matters (continued)
    HISTORICAL REFERENCES
    The Fifth Dalai Lama
    Trichen Ngawang Chokdhen (1677-1751)
    Phurchok Ngawang Jampa (1682-1762)
    Yongzin Yeshi Gyaltsen (1713-1793)
    Thukan Lobsang Choekyi Nyima (1737-1802)
    Phabongkhapa Dechen Nyingpo (1878-1941)
    Jigme Dhamchoe Gyatso (1898-1947)
    ACCOUNTS RELATED TO DOLGYAL BY CONTEMPOARY SCHOLARS
    The 100th Ganden Tripa (Ganden Throneholder)
    The Shugden Affair: Origins of a Controversy (Part 1)
    The Shugden Affair: Origins of a Controversy (Part I) – Appendix
    The Shugden Affair: Origins of a Controversy (Part II)
    The Dalai Lama And The Cult Of Dolgyal Shugden
    Quote

    And final from the above list.

    Quote

    Clarifying His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s Stand on Dolgyal/Shugden
    SHARE
    12 July 2015

    On 7th July, the final day of official celebrations of His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s 80th birthday in Orange County, California, representatives of the Office of His Holiness the Dalai Lama (OHHDL) invited the International Shugden Community (ISC) to meet and explain what they are accusing His Holiness of lying about. The office is concerned that many among the Shugden protestors may be poorly informed about the Shugden issue and His Holiness’s stand with regard to it. The office’s intention is less to try to convince those who already understand the issue but continue to protest, and more to reach out to those who have been misinformed about it. Three senior ISC members came and reiterated their allegation that His Holiness has banned the practice of Dolgyal/Shugden. This is untrue. The OHHDL representatives explained that although His Holiness has for forty years advised against propitiating Shugden, he has always been consistently clear that, in the end, it is up to individuals to choose whether or not to follow his counsel.

    Indeed, some monks from two Geluk monasteries in southern India who chose to continue their Shugden practice have set up their own monasteries, Shar Ganden Ling and Serpom Dratsang. These monasteries exist as part of their respective Tibetan settlements in south India and the members enjoy all the rights and facilities to which the residents of the settlements are entitled.

    One of the principal reasons why His Holiness advises against this practice is because of the well-documented sectarianism associated with it. In the past, Shugden practice, especially in Eastern Tibet, provoked widespread distrust between monasteries, prevented members of the Geluk school from receiving instructions belonging to the Nyingma tradition, and even led to desecration of religious images and scriptures. His Holiness considers this kind of divisiveness and disharmony to be deeply regrettable. As someone who actively promotes inter-religious harmony and understanding, he opposes discrimination against anyone on grounds of faith.

    A clear understanding of the Shugden question requires objective study of its nearly 400 year controversial history, especially the way it unfolded in the early years of the 20th century. His Holiness the Dalai Lama feels a moral responsibility to advise his followers against Shugden practice. In so doing he is following the example of his distinguished predecessors, especially the Great Fifth and the Thirteenth Dalai Lamas.
    Unquote

    These is what the Dalai Lama has on his official website to about Dorje Shugden.

  4. The above article stated that the Dalai Lama made this statement in January 2020.

    Since that day I can not find any other mention of the Dalai Lama in the news repeating his “New Policy” on Dorje Shudgen.

    Why has the Dalai Lama not publicly restated this “Pro” Dorje Shugden policy statement.

    Why has the CTA NEVER publicly stated that they in agreement with the Dalai Lama and his new “Pro” Dorje Shugden policy statement.

    Why has the Ministry of Education NEVER publicly stated that they are in agreement with the Dalai Lama and his new “Pro” Dorje Shugden policy statement.

    To quote from Mr Kei’s article,

    “During a teaching in January this year, the Dalai Lama very CASUALLY overturned the ban on the practice of Dorje Shugden which he had instigated over twenty-three years ago. IT WAS VERY EASY TO MISS THE SIGNIFICANCE OF WHAT HE SAID BECAUSE OF THE INCIDENTAL MANNER IN WHICH THE DALAI LAMA ADDRESSED THE SUBJECT….”

    Yes, it was “VERY EASY TO MISS” not only on that day in Jan. 2020 but every day since.

    The “SILENCE” of the Dalai Lama, his CTA and the Ministry of Religion speaks volumes on how serious they take this so called “Lifting of the ban on Dorje Shugden”!!

    THEY DON’T!!

    If I am wrong public show me the proof.

  5. Finally the ban has come to an end.

    “Perhaps the best evidence that the Dalai Lama intended to end the persecution of Shugden believers is the sudden disappearance of the prominent ‘Dolgyal’ banner on the CTA’s website. That banner served as an ongoing official warning for Tibetans to not practice Dorje Shugden and to not associate with Shugden Buddhists. The simultaneous disappearance of the banner indicates that the Dalai Lama’s words were no mistake.”

    • Hello Pema8

      The writer of the article you quote from, a Mr Kei states in his opening paragraph,

      Quote
      During a teaching in January this year, the Dalai Lama very casually overturned the ban on the practice of Dorje Shugden which he had instigated over twenty-three years ago. It was easy to miss the significance of what he said because of the incidental manner in which the Dalai Lama addressed the subject. However, to those attuned to the subtleties of the Dalai Lama’s manner of speaking, it was clear that the campaign which the Tibetan leadership had unleashed against Shugden Buddhists was at an end.
      Unquote

      The fact that Mr Kei’s FAILS to tell us anything about the actual date, location and from whom he is quoting as a source for all of this is very very strange.

      You can not find this information anywhere in Mr Kei’s entire article.

      Pema8 could you please tell me and the readers here where we can go to verify Mr Kei’s claims??

      If neither you nor Mr Kei’s can verify these claims what are we to thing about the truth of this article??

      There is NOWHERE on either the Dalai Lama’s nor the CTA’s websites anything about the “LIFTING OF THE BAN ON DORJE SHUGDEN!!

      Can you Mr Shasti Kei’s help provide us with proof about your claims the the 14th Dalai Lama making this official, public statement lifting the ban on Dorje Shugden?

  6. Some have suggested that the Dalai Lama made an error and did not, in fact, intend to lift the prohibition on Dorje Shugden. However, there were three other hints to indicate that the Tibetan leader’s attitude towards Dorje Shugden has actually changed:

    The Dalai Lama raised the subject on his own. There were no new developments on the Dorje Shugden front that made it necessary for him to address this very sensitive issue. Nor was his mention of Dorje Shugden in response to questions about the subject. So, it is clear that the Dalai Lama intended to convey a point specifically with regard to the Shugden issue.

    The Dalai Lama referred to the deity by the proper name, ‘Dorje Shugden’, which means ‘the adamantine force that protects the Gelug’. For over twenty-three years, the Dalai Lama had called the deity by the derogatory name ‘Dolgyal’, which translates to ‘angry spirit of the river Dol’. By addressing the deity respectfully on this occasion, the Dalai Lama signaled that it is time to stop disparaging Dorje Shugden.

    The Dalai Lama’s tone was amiable and gentle when he spoke about Dorje Shugden. This, too, was a departure from the scathing, derisive manner which the Dalai Lama had previously employed to refer to ‘Dolgyal’ whenever he wanted to perpetuate public animosity against Dorje Shugden.

    One can discuss endlessly but these are clear signs that the Dalai Lama has changed towards the practice of Dorje Shugden. I rejoice for all of us. 🙏🙏🙏

    • Hello Pema8

      Some simple questions.

      WHEN in January 2020 did the Dalai Lama say this?

      WHERE in January 2020 did the Dalai Lama say this?

      From whom are you and Mr Kei’s quoting from about all this?

      I can not find ONE newspaper article about this earth shaking development.

      Why can I not find any of this “Lifting of the BAN” anywhere on the Dalai Lama’s, the CTA’s or their Ministry of Religions websites?

      Please help me out with all of this Pema8!!

  7. Hello Pema8

    You stated you were happy that the Dalai Lama did not use the name “Dolgyal” and has taken down that bannner.

    Quote
    Pema
    June 7, 2020

    Finally the ban has come to an end.

    “Perhaps the best evidence that the Dalai Lama intended to end the persecution of Shugden believers is the sudden disappearance of the prominent ‘Dolgyal’ banner on the CTA’s website. That banner served as an ongoing official warning for Tibetans to not practice Dorje Shugden and to not associate with Shugden Buddhists. The simultaneous disappearance of the banner indicates that the Dalai Lama’s words were no mistake.”
    Unquote

    You also stated in another comment.

    Quote
    …The Dalai Lama referred to the deity by the proper name, ‘Dorje Shugden’, which means ‘the adamantine force that protects the Gelug’. For over twenty-three years, the Dalai Lama had called the deity by the derogatory name ‘Dolgyal’, which translates to ‘angry spirit of the river Dol’. By addressing the deity respectfully on this occasion, the Dalai Lama signaled that it is time to stop disparaging Dorje Shugden.

    The Dalai Lama’s tone was amiable and gentle when he spoke about Dorje Shugden. This, too, was a departure from the scathing, derisive manner which the Dalai Lama had previously employed to refer to ‘Dolgyal’ whenever he wanted to perpetuate public animosity against Dorje Shugden.

    One can discuss endlessly but these are clear signs that the Dalai Lama has changed towards the practice of Dorje Shugden. I rejoice for all of us. 🙏🙏🙏
    Unquote

    First you and Mr Kei have to prove that the Dalai Lama did in fact state that he has “Lifted the Ban on Dorje Shugden”.

    Since Mr Kei’s has failed to provide the actual date, location or source who claims these statements were made by the Dalai Lama.

    So now let us look at the Dalai Lama’s website and see if he still officially and publicly uses the word “Dolgyal”?

    Surprise, Surprise he still does.

    Here’s a link to his website https://www.dalailama.com/

    Go to the far right of the top screen and click on to “MORE” and here is what you find at the left of that screen.

    Quote
    Messages
    Compassion and Human Values
    World Peace
    Environment
    Religious Harmony
    Buddhism
    Retirement and Reincarnation
    Tibet
    Transcripts and Interviews
    Acceptance Speeches
    DOLGYAL (Shugden)
    Unquote

    That right Pema8 the Dalai Lama is STILL publicly using the name “DOLGYAL” to describe Dorje Shugden on his official website.

    The Dalai Lama continues to use “DOLGYAL’S” name in the 25 articles that are found when you click onto “DOLGYAL (Shugden)
    😱😱😱

  8. Why does Mr Kei fail to provide us with any “Direct Quotes” from the Dalai Lama’s speech??

    Here is an example.

    Quote
    So, it came as a complete surprise when the Dalai Lama casually remarked in his January 2020 teaching that it was fine to worship Dorje Shugden as a birth deity (kye lha) or a land god (yul lha). Although the Dalai Lama persisted in questioning the historic status of Dorje Shugden as the Protector of Lama Tsongkapa’s lineage, his consent for the worship of the deity was a drastic reversal of official Tibetan policy that had stood for over two decades. The Dalai Lama had just ended a ban on the practice of Dorje Shugden that the Tibetan leadership had pursued aggressively since 1996.
    Unquote

    There are absolutely no “First Person” direct quotes from the Dalai Lama in his article.

    WHY NOT MR KEI’S???

    His totally failure to provide us with any quotes or any proof of the actual date and place of this so called “Lifting of the Ban”.

    Sorry Mr Kei’s without any proof from you I must now question if your article is in fact “Fake News”.

    Please provide us with proof!!

Submit your comment

Please enter your name

Please enter a valid email address

Please enter your message

Show More
Show More
+

(Allowed file types: jpg, jpeg, gif, png, maximum file size: 10MB each)

You can now upload MP4 videos to the comments section. "Choose File" -> click "Upload" then wait while your video is processed. Then copy the link and paste it into the message box. Your video will appear after you submit your comment.
Maximum size is 64MB

Contemplate This

.…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.

Dorje Shugden and Dalai Lama – Spreading Dharma Together | Terms of Use | Disclaimer

© DorjeShugden.com 2020 | All Rights Reserved
Total views:9,782,348