Zasep Rinpoche’s writings on Tibet, Dorje Shugden and the Tibetan Government

Acharya Zasep Tulku Rinpoche who book debunks CTA lies about Dorje Shugden

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: Yad Hegadi

In 1996, the Central Tibetan Government (CTA; Tibetan exiled leadership in Dharamsala) issued a religious ban on the practice of the Dharma Protector Gyalchen Dorje Shugden. Since that time, the CTA’s Parliament and Cabinet have passed official Resolutions to incriminate this 400-year-old practice, making it taboo for anyone to associate with the practice and its practitioners. The CTA’s diktats against Dorje Shugden were readily accepted by many who, lacking a deeper understanding of Tibetan Buddhist principles and Tibetan societal norms, took the CTA’s word on face value. This was not surprising – Tibet had been isolated and inaccessible for centuries so it was easy for the world to become fascinated with them, thanks in large part to Hollywood’s mythical portrayal of the country and people. With this fascination, people around the world were easily spellbound by what the Dalai Lama and his government said and so when the ban on Dorje Shugden was implemented, outsiders easily believed it without necessarily grasping the hollowness of the CTA’s accusations of the Dorje Shugden practice.

However, initial efforts to ban Dorje Shugden did not take off within the Tibetan Buddhist community. This was principally due to the simple fact that many lamas, learned scholars and older monks knew better than to believe what the CTA claimed about Dorje Shugden. For hundreds of years, the highest and most illustrious lamas and geshes had practiced the deity and personally experienced its benefits, then passed on the practice to their disciples.

Zasep Rinpoche’s book titled “A Tulku’s Journey From Tibet To Canada”, chronicling his life and experiences.

Thus, 12 years after the ban was first implemented, the Dorje Shugden practice continued to be widespread. Realizing stronger enforcement was necessary if the CTA was going to achieve their goals, in 2008 the Dalai Lama personally and forcefully issued a decree that effectively demonized the Shugden practice. What was confusing was that the Dalai Lama was demonizing Dorje Shugden that he himself had written praises to, in worship of the deity. With the Dalai Lama’s decree it became dangerous to even speak about the Dorje Shugden controversy in a neutral way, since not to agree with the Dalai Lama is regarded as both treasonous and blasphemous. With all opposition voices silenced, it became easy for the CTA to persecute Dorje Shugden worshippers.

This is why when an illustrious lama such as Venerable Zasep Rinpoche, with a stainless reputation and known to be disinterested in worldly pursuits, writes honestly about Dorje Shugden, it easily dispels the CTA’s anti-Shugden distortions. This is precisely what Zasep Rinpoche’s book, A Tulku’s Journey from Tibet to Canada, did. Whilst the book is a fascinating, albeit abridged, chronicle of Zasep Rinpoche’s life, it also doubles as a powerful negation of the CTA’s lies about the Protector Dorje Shugden, Zasep Rinpoche simply writing honestly and factually by what he witnessed.

 

Is Dorje Shugden sectarian?

For example, the CTA claims that Dorje Shugden is a sectarian practice, inferring that those who practice Dorje Shugden are extremists and intolerant of other Tibetan Buddhist traditions. In 2014 the CTA even criminalized the practice of Dorje Shugden, using its Parliament to pass a Resolution proclaiming Shugden worshippers to be “criminals in history”. The then-Speaker of Parliament, Penpa Tsering went as far as going to the Upper TCV School with the purpose of poisoning young Tibetan minds against a religious practice. That the then-Speaker of Parliament, who is a political figure, would intervene on religious matters and make official statements on the validity of a religious practice indicates that the CTA is not a true democracy to begin with. In his speech to the students of the school, Penpa Tsering accused Pabongka Rinpoche, who advocated the practice of Dorje Shugden, of attempting to eliminate Nyingma teachings, even saying that he destroyed statues of Guru Rinpoche and burned down Nyingma monasteries.

Penpa Tsering’s grossly distorted portrayal of Pabongka Rinpoche is typical of how the CTA presents all Shugden practitioners. His speech was littered with inaccuracies, as reflected in Zasep Rinpoche’s Book. Zasep Rinpoche noted how Pabongka Dechen Nyingpo made every effort to keep the Dharma free of corruption and would speak fervently against the degeneration within the Tibetan monastic community. This, and his immense popularity, drew envy and resentment from people who felt that Pabongka Dechen Nyingpo was a threat to their standing, congregation and livelihoods. They began to spread rumors about Pabongka Rinpoche, claiming that he sought to eliminate the other Tibetan Buddhist traditions; this is the same accusation that Penpa Tsering repeated decades later in the school. Zasep Rinpoche personally witnessed how these rumors confused many people’s minds even though there was no truth in them, and Zasep Rinpoche also witnessed that those who knew Pabongka Dechen Nyingpo also saw through the efforts to defame him.

Various heads of Tibetan Buddhist lineages in Buxa Transit Camp. Until the CTA politicized the religion, all Tibetan Buddhist traditions lived and practiced in harmony. In Buxa, lamas of various traditions could be seen engaging in Dorje Shugden pujas together.

As further evidence that the CTA invented stories of Dorje Shugden’s ‘sectarianism’, Zasep Rinpoche wrote that all lamas of the various Tibetan Buddhist traditions lived and practiced in peace, and there was in fact no sectarianism by Shugden Buddhists or indeed anyone. Zasep Rinpoche’s account coincides with stories told by the first generation of Tibetans-in-exile, of the time when all Tibetan refugees lived harmoniously together in Buxa, a transit camp in India. In Buxa, Tibetan monks, nuns and laypeople were housed together regardless of the Buddhist school they were from. As Zasep Rinpoche wrote in his book, each Tibetan Buddhist lineage tended to their own affairs and went about practicing their own deities, and there were no quarrels about whose practice was wrong or right. In the Buxa transit camp, there were even those who practiced Bön, which was not even regarded as a Buddhist tradition until 1977 when the Dalai Lama proclaimed it to be one. Many believed this proclamation was done for political reasons since the Mahasiddha Milarepa, whose teachings became the basis of the Kagyu lineage, had at one time even proclaimed,

“Bön is not a refuge for Buddhists; it is not worthy of being a refuge … It is vital that you should know the sources of the Bön religion…The source of Bön is perverted Dharma. A creation of nagas and powerful elementals, it does not take one to the ultimate path.”

But despite different lamas of different traditions having opposing spiritual views, all of Tibetan Buddhism was in harmony until the CTA fostered rivalry and animosity amongst the sects and gave prominence to sectarianism.

In addition, Zasep Rinpoche’s account of the most famous Dorje Shugden lama, Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche, paints a very different picture of Dorje Shugden lamas compared to that which the CTA has been promoting since 1996. In his book, Zasep Rinpoche wrote that Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche commanded the respect of Gelug lamas, as well as lamas from the Nyingma, Kagyu and Sakya traditions. These lamas, such as

The sixteenth Karmapa Ranjung Rigpe Dorje, Dilgo Kyentse Rinpoche, Kongtrul Rinpoche, Zhamar Rinpoche, Katog Situ Rinpoche, Drungpa Gyaktsab Rinpoche, Sakya Dagchen Rinpoche and Nalanda Sakya Chogye Rinpoche would all visit Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche to have spiritual discussions and talk about Tibetan affairs.”

This would not have been possible if Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche was known to have bigoted views; none of these lamas would have met with Trijang Rinpoche had he sought the destruction of their Tibetan Buddhist traditions, which the CTA has claimed of lamas who rely on Dorje Shugden. Similarly, Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche’s students would have embraced their great teacher’s approach towards the other traditions and hence, until the CTA hatched and repeated their lie about Dorje Shugden lamas being sectarian, there are no records of Dorje Shugden lamas instigating violence against other traditions.

 

Is Dorje Shugden is a fringe cult practice?

The CTA has also claimed that Dorje Shugden is merely a small but dangerous breakaway cult. Again, what Zasep Rinpoche personally witnessed and wrote in his book counters the CTA’s misleading stories. Zasep Rinpoche wrote that when he and his grandfather visited the headquarters of the Sakya high lamas, he saw how prominent the deity was amongst the Sakyas; that is, it was prominent until the CTA made it illegal to practice this Protector. Zasep Rinpoche articulated in detail what he saw at Sakya Monastery, even down to the colors of the buildings within the Monastery’s compound. He also gave descriptions of some of the very special Sakya shrines, including a shrine at Sakya Mugchung dedicated to a Dharma Protector which is in fact the Sakya version of Dorje Shugden also known as Dorje Shugden Tanag (Dorje Shugden on a black horse).

Dorje Shugden Tanag (Dorje Shugden on black horse) which is the form of Dorje Shugden worshipped by the Sakyas

This should not come as a shock because as Zasep Rinpoche correctly pointed out, Dorje Shugden first manifested in the Sakya lineage after being recognized as a Dharma Protector by the Sakya lama Morchen Kunga Lhundrub. The word ‘Mugchung’ refers to a temple within the Sakya town very close to the Sakya lineage’s administrative building, where Dorje Shugden was worshipped. In the Sakya tradition, and even before Dorje Shugden was widely practiced by the Gelug, the Protector was already enthroned by the Sakya together with Setrap Chen and Tsiu Marpo; all three are collectively known as the Sakya Three Kings or Gyalpo Sum.

This history of Dorje Shugden is not Zasep Rinpoche’s invention. In fact, Jeff Watt, who is one of the leading scholars of Tibetan Buddhism, art and culture, also noted in his writings that it was the Sakya lineage, specifically the Khon family that the 41st Sakya Trizin belongs to, who was responsible for developing the worship of Dorje Shugden. It is difficult to accuse Watt of being sectarian and biased because this scholar is a student of a number of teachers from different traditions, such as Dudjom Rinpoche, Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, Kalu Rinpoche, Sakya Jetsun Chimey, His Holiness the 16th Karmapa, and even the 41st Sakya Trizin himself. Jeff Watt wrote,

“Sakya Trizin Sachen Ngawang Kunga Lodro (1729-1790?) composed a new offering service for Shugden based on the ‘torma throwing’ ritual of the ‘Three Kings.’ Later, Sakya Trizin Trakshu Thinley Rinchen (1871-1936) in his personal diaries written on scraps of paper starting from the age of 8 years records all his thoughts, dreams and miscellaneous experiences. After his passing these were collected and added to his biography. In these diaries, amongst many other topics, he muses over the nature of Shugden and the relationship between Shugden, his father (S.T. Kunga Nyingpo) and his grand-father (S.T. Tashi Rinchen) of whom Trakshu Thinley Rinchen was the incarnation. These are regarded as an interesting curiosity within the Drolma Podrang of the Khon family as well as being their personal family business”.

Jeff Watt pointed out that as a matter of fact, Dorje Shugden also reincarnated into the Sakya bloodline as the 31st and the 37th Sakya Trizin. So, what Zasep Rinpoche witnessed regarding the Sakyas’ reliance on Dorje Shugden and the prominence of the practice within their lineage was accurate.

And yet, after the CTA imposed this illegal and unconstitutional religious ban on Dorje Shugden, many Tibetan Buddhist leaders including the head of the Sakya at the time were forced to deny and distance themselves from the Dorje Shugden practice. In his letter to the CTA, the 41st Sakya Trizin claimed that, “some Sakyas worshipped Shugden as a lower deity, but Shugden was never part of the Sakya institution.” In 2011, the same Sakya Trizin went further and wrote letters urging others to give up the Dorje Shugden practice. And yet, as Zasep Rinpoche saw, Dorje Shugden Tanag was given prominence in the main Sakya Monastery. Why would a “lower deity” who “was never part of the Sakya institution” be given such prominence? The contrast between the actual history of the Sakyas’ worship of Dorje Shugden and their post-Shugden ban denial is a good indication of how the CTA forced everyone to ignore logic and fact, and forced people agree with them or face the consequences.

Likewise, the highest lamas of the Gelug trusted Dorje Shugden and from Pabongka Dechen Nyingpo, the practice was passed on to His Holiness Trijang Rinpoche. Pabongka Dechen Nyingpo and Trijang Dorje Chang were, without doubt, the backbone and pillars of the Gelug tradition in the 20th century and it would be difficult to find any lama or scholar in the present century that did not study from these two great lamas who were widely regarded as emanations of Buddhas.

 

Is Dorje Shugden a malicious spirit that harms the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan cause?

Various letters showing Dorje Shugden’s advice to the Tibetan people and to provide instructions ensuring the Dalai Lama’s safe passage out of Tibet. Click to enlarge.

Zasep Rinpoche’s relationship with Dorje Shugden began when he was very young. From very early on, he could already see that Dorje Shugden was not only a very powerful and omniscient deity but also one who was very beneficial, and had the wellbeing of the Tibetan people in his heart. His faith in Dorje Shugden is further enhanced by the fact that he received sogtae (life-entrustment ceremony) from not only Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche but also from Kyabje Zong Rinpoche, two of the greatest Tibetan lamas from whom Gelug practitioners receive the lineage practices.

Zasep Rinpoche’s grandfather was also a firm believer of Dorje Shugden, as was Zasep Rinpoche’s teacher, Lama Gelong Chojor Gyamtso who was an oracle of Dorje Shugden and Kache Marpo (Dorje Shugden’s chief minister and acolyte). Lama Gelong used to take spontaneous trance of Dorje Shugden and speaking through him, Dorje Shugden helped a lot of people and guided them on their spiritual path. A few years before 1959, Dorje Shugden already foresaw that Tibet would be lost to the Chinese and through Lama Gelong in trance, told Zasep Rinpoche’s grandfather of this. Zasep Rinpoche’s grandfather accepted Dorje Shugden’s prophecy without hesitation and immediately took preparatory steps. Hence when Tibet eventually fell a few years later, Zasep Rinpoche’s family did not land on hard times.

Various letters showing Dorje Shugden’s advice to the Tibetan people and to provide instructions ensuring the Dalai Lama’s safe passage out of Tibet. Click to enlarge.

However, as Zasep Rinpoche confirmed in his book, Dorje Shugden did more than save his family. Through the famous Panglung Oracle, Dorje Shugden had prophesied the fall of Tibet a few years earlier and warned the Tibetan people to take pre-emptive steps. However, they failed to act on the Protector’s warning and lost the karmic window to avert the calamity.

Sera Monastery Pomra Khangtsen’s records independently corroborate Zasep Rinpoche’s personal account. According to Pomra Khangtsen’s records, the incident took place in 1956-1957, when the Panglung Oracle told the head of the Chushi Gangdruk what was about to happen. The Chushi Gangdruk, meaning “Four Rivers, Six Mountain Ranges”, were an organization of Tibetan guerrilla fighters formed to resist the Chinese Army. Pomra Khangtsen’s records confirm that a whole two years before the Dalai Lama’s eventual escape, Dorje Shugden already knew that Tibet would be lost and that one day, the Dalai Lama would have to flee. In preparation, the Protector directed the Chushi Gangdruk to establish a new training base south of Lhasa and directly helped to build up a regiment of soldiers who were on standby to help the Dalai Lama. This preparatory step would prove crucial in 1959 during the Dalai Lama’s flight from Tibet, when this guerrilla force provided the necessary protection on the journey. Dorje Shugden was famous for such clairvoyance and compassion towards the Tibetan people before the CTA twisted the truth to serve their own interest.

Various letters showing Dorje Shugden’s advice to the Tibetan people and to provide instructions ensuring the Dalai Lama’s safe passage out of Tibet. Click to enlarge.

Zasep Rinpoche also wrote that a few days before the Dalai Lama’s escape in 1959, the Tibetan people learned of a Chinese plan to harm the Dalai Lama. At this most critical point in his life, Zasep Rinpoche wrote that of all the Protector deities within the Tibetan Buddhist pantheon, the Dalai Lama chose to place his trust in Dorje Shugden and took Dorje Shugden’s very detailed instructions and advice and this was how the Dalai Lama, his mother and his senior and junior tutors, Kyabje Ling Rinpoche and Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche were saved.

There are other sources that back up Zasep Rinpoche’s account of who saved the Dalai Lama – Sera Monastery Pomra Khangtsen’s record of their consultation with Dorje Shugden in 1959, the personal testimonies of Sera monks who escorted the Dalai Lama to safety, the testimonies of the Chushi Gangdruk warriors (before they too were forced by the CTA to change their story) and also Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche’s own writing, as detailed in his biography. Interestingly, when the Dalai Lama wrote his “foreword” for the translation of Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche’s biography, he did not deny that it was Dorje Shugden who gave the advice for the Dalai Lama to flee for his life and provided the route, and who also prescribed some supernatural procedures to ensure the Dalai Lama’s safety.

Venerable Lobsang Yeshe, the changtso of the Sera Abbot who witnessed that it was Dorje Shugden giving the advice for the Dalai Lama to escape safely out of Tibet.

Yet today, Dorje Shugden is said to wish harm upon the Dalai Lama. This point alone is sufficient proof that the CTA lied when it accused Dorje Shugden of being harmful to the Dalai Lama or said that his practice is against the Dharma. First of all, it is highly illogical for Dorje Shugden to go through such great lengths to save the Dalai Lama’s life, only to try and harm him later. The Dalai Lama is the face of Tibet and Tibetan Buddhism and in saving his life, Dorje Shugden ensured Tibetan Buddhism had the means to survive and be reestablished in exile. Tibetan Buddhism spreading like wildfire after 1959 was due to Dorje Shugden’s direct intervention in rescuing the Dalai Lama. In fact, the lamas who brought Tibetan Buddhism to the West like Geshe Rabten, Geshe Tsultim Gyeltsen, Lama Yeshe and Geshe Kelsang Gyatso all worshipped Dorje Shugden alongside other traditional Gelug deities and Buddhas. Much like Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche, a Dorje Shugden lama who proliferated Dharma in Tibet, these lamas were prolific in their teachings and activities in the West. Thus, far from being anti-Dharma, the truth is that those who practice Dorje Shugden have preserved and spread the Dharma further than any other Tibetan in history.

Records of Sera Monastery Pomra Khangtsen’s consultation of Dorje Shugden, showing the role of the Protector in the formation of the guerrilla group which would eventually protect the Dalai Lama on his flight into exile in India. Such is the significance of Dorje Shugden to Tibetan history, contrary to the CTA’s claims about his existence being harmful to Tibet and Tibetans. Click to enlarge.

Records of Sera Monastery Pomra Khangtsen’s consultation of Dorje Shugden, showing the role of the Protector in the formation of the guerrilla group which would eventually protect the Dalai Lama on his flight into exile in India. Such is the significance of Dorje Shugden to Tibetan history, contrary to the CTA’s claims about his existence being harmful to Tibet and Tibetans. Click to enlarge.

 

Is Dorje Shugden’s practice ‘demon worshipping’?

Everything the CTA falsely accuses Dorje Shugden of is without proof or basis. Thus, when someone credible like Zasep Rinpoche simply shares his own story, in the process of doing so he easily and inadvertently overturns lies about Dorje Shugden.

For example, Zasep Rinpoche wrote a moving account of how his grandfather’s teacher, Lama Gelong Chojor Gyamtso ascended to Buddha Vajrayogini’s heaven. If the CTA is correct about Dorje Shugden being a demon, how can the oracle of a demon enter into a pure land such as Vajrayogini’s paradise? If Dorje Shugden were a malicious spirit as the CTA claims, then anyone who worships him and encourages others to worship him (let alone takes trance of him!) would surely end up in the lower realms, and not in Vajrayogini’s pure land.

The Dalai Lama recognized and enthroned Trijang Choktrul Rinpoche, the reincarnation of his tutor, Kyabje Trijang Dorjechang. It contradicts the CTA’s claims that all Shugden worshippers will take rebirth in hell.

In fact the Tibetan leadership undermines its own lies about Dorje Shugden. Although they claim that relying on Dorje Shugden leads to a rebirth in the three lower realms, the Tibetan leadership have recognized and enthroned the reincarnations of lamas who strongly practiced Dorje Shugden in their past lives. The Dalai Lama himself recognised the reincarnation of Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche and Kyabje Zong Rinpoche who were great champions of the Shugden practice. This is not to mention the reincarnation of the 10th Panchen Lama who was an unshakeable believer of Dorje Shugden, and also Kyabje Ling Rinpoche who wrote prayers to invoke Dorje Shugden. Thus Zasep Rinpoche’s story of how Lama Gelong, a Dorje Shugden oracle ascended to Vajrayogini’s paradise, is just one of many on a long list of Dorje Shugden lamas and scholars who have been known to have achieved great attainments.

 

Why the CTA imposed the Shugden ban

A picture of the Dalai Lama taken during his escape to India. This escape was instructed and facilitated by Dorje Shugden, who even provided the escape route. Click to enlarge.

Zasep Rinpoche’s courage in speaking the truth is very clear and everything Zasep Rinpoche writes about Dorje Shugden in his biography can be cross-checked and verified by referring to other independent sources. This shows that Zasep Rinpoche only wrote what was factual; he is, after all, commonly viewed as a credible and authentic holder of Lama Tsongkhapa’s lineage. And so when Zasep Rinpoche wrote in passing that the CTA orchestrated the Dorje Shugden controversy to deflect attention away from their failures, then there must be substance to his statement.

And we see that in fact, there is; by 1996, the Tibetan leadership had already failed to fulfill many promises to the Tibetan people. They had promised that they would regain their country and the Tibetan people believed them. The State Oracle, Nechung, who holds the rank of a minister in the CTA (the only ‘democratic’ parliament with a spirit as a Minister) had, by 1996, wrongly prophesied that the CTA would achieve victory against the Chinese army on many occasions. In 1987, Nechung boasted, “I will send 100 million divine soldiers to China” but to this day, the Tibetans remain as refugees. Nechung made similar predictions in 1995, 1997 and in 2012 and along the way the CTA issued corresponding promises to the people. By 1996, the CTA ran out of excuses for these prophecies failing to come true, and they had to blame their lack of political accomplishments on something else. So in May 1996, the CTA Cabinet officially blamed Dorje Shugden, saying:

“However, we are yet to achieve the ultimate triumph. Obstructive factors of various kinds, emanating from beings of both the form and formless realms, continue to hinder our efforts. His Holiness the Dalai Lama has investigated these obstructions and their causes for many years. One of the findings of his investigations is that depending on the spirit, Dolgyal, otherwise known as Dorje Shugden or Gyalchen Shugden, conflicts with Tibet’s two protector-deities (Nechung and Palden Lhamo) as well as the protector-deity of the Gelugpa tradition, Pledge-holding Dharmaraja (Damchen Choegyal). The inclination of this spirit is to harm, rather than benefit, the cause of Tibet.”

The CTA remains the only government in the modern world who blames a deity for its political failures whilst simultaneously failing to explain why the Dalai Lama, who is regarded as a Buddha, and the entire pantheon of deities from the four Tibetan Buddhist traditions, as well as Bön, could not help the CTA regain their homeland and fulfill their promises to the people.

Is the Dalai Lama as the CTA says, which is an all-knowing and all-powerful Buddha? In which case, how could such an individual be bested by a “mere spirit”, which is what the CTA claims Dorje Shugden to be? In calling Dorje Shugden a spirit and subsequently blaming the Tibetans’ lack of political progress on him, the CTA are in fact inadvertently saying that the Dalai Lama lacks the power, ability and otherwise wherewithal to subdue something that they say is “just a spirit”. It is another illogical attempt from the CTA to once again demonize Shugden practitioners, without having the basis to do so.

 

Summarizing it all

The formidable Mongolian lama Guru Deva Rinpoche, who was one of the most prolific patrons of the Tibetan monasteries in exile. It was thanks in part to his sponsorship that the monasteries could be reestablished and while it was convenient to receive his funding, he was accepted by the community. After the ban however, the fact he relied on Dorje Shugden led to him being increasingly persecuted. This eventually drove him out of India and back to Mongolia.

In the CTA’s persecution of innocent Dorje Shugden worshippers, they have been ruthless and brutal. Many of these Tibetans trusted the Dalai Lama and the CTA and followed their leaders into exile. Many, especially the lamas, contributed greatly to the cause of Tibet and to Tibetan Buddhism. As Zasep Rinpoche noted, one such lama was the Mongolian Guru Deva Rinpoche who contributed significantly to the rebuilding of the Dalai Lama’s secular and spiritual empire in exile. Even such a high lama was not spared the CTA’s malice. Guru Deva Rinpoche had supported the publication of a book about Dorje Shugden written by Pisu Jola, a lay practitioner who was discouraged by the injustice he saw the CTA inflict on Dorje Shugden believers. The book contained many stories about Dorje Shugden that would shame the CTA and make it difficult for them to ban the sacred practice. And so, both Pisu Jola and Guru Deva Rinpoche were both severely punished to the point that Guru Deva Rinpoche was forced to move away.

Like Pisu Jola’s book, Zasep Rinpoche’s book serves to expose the CTA’s crimes and lies except this time, the CTA cannot do anything in retaliation because firstly, those who know Zasep Rinpoche, a lama of stainless reputation, cannot find any fault in him. They have never known him to lie, speak ill of others, engage in politicking or any other behavior that would be considered inappropriate and unbecoming of a lama. In addition, Zasep Rinpoche is a resident of Canada, a real democracy that protects one’s basic human rights to his religion, and his freedom of speech and his freedom of thought.

Zasep Rinpoche’s book was published in 2016 and jointly with other lamas who have been educating the world about the truth surrounding the Dorje Shugden ban, it has resulted in the CTA being forced to downplay its horrific persecution of Shugden Buddhists. These days the CTA denies that there is even any discrimination but both the Dalai Lama and CTA’s official websites still contain material that are published to demonize Dorje Shugden and incite hatred against its worshippers.

The fact is that the CTA’s assault on the truth today still persists because most lamas and scholars who know the truth about Dorje Shugden prefer to remain silent and enjoy the ill-gotten privileges of being in the CTA’s good books, rather than saving the holy lineage of Lama Tsongkhapa and the reputation of great Dorje Shugden lamas of old. Hence it is books and writings such as Zasep Rinpoche’s biography that will save Lama Tsongkhapa’s pure lineage whilst the CTA is trying to demolish established traditions and construct their own, to command unquestioning loyalty from the Tibetan Buddhists worldwide.

 

Zasep Rinpoche’s biography

Zasep Rinpoche is perhaps one of the few remaining tulkus that was recognized, enthroned and received his traditional monastic education within the old Tibetan setting. Within his gripping autobiography A Tulku’s Journey from Tibet to Canada, Zasep Rinpoche tells his story set in a life steeped in tradition of the old tulku system in Tibet. He relates his experience of receiving his monastic education set in the backdrop of life within the monastery as they once were in old Tibet. His story spans his entire experience during his formative years growing up in the setting of traditional Tibetan society as he makes his way out of Tibet. In addition, the book also contains old black and white pictures that are the perfect accompaniment to Zasep Rinpoche’s very interesting story. The book is a must-read for those interested in Tibet prior to 1959 especially monastic culture.

You can purchase the book on Amazon.com by clicking here.

“Zasep Tulku Rinpoche’s A Tulku’s Journey from Tibet to Canada is equal parts autobiography, spiritual epic journey, gripping adventure narrative, inspiring Buddhist life example, and a travelogue spanning nine countries. Of course, this is a must read for Zasep Rinpoche’s students, or anyone contemplating asking to become his student. It is also a “should read” for anyone interested in Tibetan Buddhism. It’s a good read for anyone who enjoys biographies since it contains all the elements of a great spiritual bio: adventure, a fascinating life, spiritual insights, and a glimpse into the lives of a once-hidden people in the land of snows. Rinpoche truly brings Tibet alive in an intimate and honest way. While his love of teachers, Buddhism, Tibet and his people is palpable and constant, he doesn’t portray Tibet as a “Shangri-La”, and he doesn’t hesitate to describe both the good and bad.

– Buddha Weekly

Zasep Rinpoche’s book titled “A Tulku’s Journey From Tibet To Canada”, chronicling his life and experiences.

The back cover of Zasep Rinpoche’s autobiography

Zasep Rinpoche in his younger days together with his grandfather. It was his grandfather who took Zasep Rinpoche to Tashi Lhapug Gompa to study. Tashi Lhapug, with its 700 monks, was the largest Gelug monastery in the area. It was here where Zasep Rinpoche received his ordination vows.

Zasep Rinpoche’s grandfather in his younger days

After Trijang Rinpoche recognized Zasep Rinpoche as the reincarnation of Konchog Gyurme, Trijang Rinpoche suggested that Zasep Rinpoche enter Sera Monastery to further his studies. On his arrival at Sera, Zasep Tulku entered Sera Je Monastic Collage where he was enthroned as a lama.

Zasep Rinpoche arrived at the home of Geshe Thubten Wanggyel (pictured here) on the morning that Geshela was completing his six-month Heruka retreat with a fire puja. Zasep Rinpoche would end up studying under Geshela for the next 10 years. Geshe happily accepted Zasep Tulku as his disciple, saying, “I’m honored to accept you as my student because my root Guru Trijang Dorje Chang sent you to me. Trijang Dorje Chang knows that we will develop good teacher and student relationship.”

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20 total comments on this postSubmit yours
  1. It is very good and supportive of Gelug Lamas, other than those normally in the Dorje Shugden limelight to have resources that points to the truth about the Dorje Shugden controversy.

    We all welcome that the situation on Dorje Shugden is clarified via another set of information. Why would all lamas deceive the public I mean to what end? There is clearly no monetary and spiritual benefit these lamas can get from revealing the truth.

  2. It is nice to see another lama is writing his personal story, his relationship with Dorje Shugden. There are many Dorje Shugden lamas all around the world, but not many are very outspoken about their Dorje Shugden practice.

    Zasep Rinpoche and his family totally relied on Dorje Shugden and he has no doubt on Dorje Shugden’s clairvoyance and power. The practice was passed down to him by his teacher and he has kept the practice ever since. He is not afraid to tell everyone he practices Dorje Shugden. He has very a strong guru devotion and faith in Dorje Shugden

    What is interesting is the detail Zasep Rinpoche gave with regards to the escape of the Dalai Lama. His story is identical to that of Trijang Rinpoche. It cannot be that 2 lamas have cooked up a story so they can tell the same lies. They are high lamas, I don’t think they will tell lies. Sooner or later, everyone will know about the lies the CTA has been telling about Dorje Shugden. The ban has to be lifted soon in order for the pure Dharma to continue to flourish.

  3. It shouldn’t surprise anyone to see Dorje Shugden being mentioned in Zasep Rinpoche’s autobiography. As a matter of fact, it would be more of a surprise for a Gelug lama of the 20th and 21st century not to have received the practice of Dorje Shugden from their teachers. The simple truth is, Dorje Shugden was widely worshipped until the Dalai Lama’s government made it a crime to be associated with this practice.

    I couldn’t agree more with the author that if more Dorje Shugden practitioners from the various Tibetan Buddhist lineages and around the world were to stand up to Dharamsala’s ban on Dorje Shugden, the unholy ban would have collapsed very early on.

    The Tibetan government’s case against Dorje Shugden is based on 2 things only – disinformation (lies) and intimidation (fear) and they get away with it because people who know the facts choose to stay silent out of fear or cowardice.

    I don’t even feel that Zasep Rinpoche was writing against Dharamsala. I feel that Rinpoche was just writing honestly. One day soon when the ban is abolished, someone like him will be remembered as not only a great lama but also a true son of Lama Tsongkhapa’s lineage. 👍

  4. The Dalai Lama is the Head of Tibetan Buddhism and it is not possible for Lamas to go against His decrees. As such the ban on Dorje Shugden had a lot of ill effects on Lamas who knowing that the ban is wrong are still unable to do anything about it except to continue to practise in secret.

    That is where the fault lies, with Dorje Shugden Lamas not wanting to offend the Dalai Lama, many people are deprived of the teachings on the propitiation of this great Protector.

    I rejoice that Zasep Rinpoche has written about his experience of this Protector and some facts of history which are well hidden away from the public view.

  5. i wish all my fellow Tibetans will just not blindly believe into CTA’s propaganda. It’s been 60 years and nothing has been done for the welfare of our people. Same goes to the Dorje Shugden issue, we only hear from one side of the story and to all my fellow Tibetans, wake up!

  6. All CTA do is lie. I believe ever since they existed. Now I am beginning to think that they solely exist to manipulate and control the minds of the Tibetans. They do not exist for the betterment of their people. If we dig deeper into CTA’s history we can see that many controversies started long long time ago. And for those who believe in the doctrine of Dharma will know the schism CTA created destroyed many people’s beliefs from a long time ago. And yet they continue to do so and now all the way from India. If they know karma, I wish them all the best in their future rebirths. Thank goodness for great Lamas like Zasep Rinpoche for writing the truth to clear the minds of those in doubt.

  7. Much respect and many prostrations to venerable Zasep Rinpoche in speaking the truth.

    There are so many written accounts by great and highly accomplished lamas of how Dorje Shugden helped in the escape of HH the Dalai Lama from Tibet. And these lamas and other lamas spoke of the enlightened nature of Dorje Shugden and pass on his practice to their students. Yet CTA brand Dorje Shugden as a demon and use many methods to put Dorje Shugden down. The negative motivation and actions by the CTA will no doubt come back to haunt them. Like the saying that goes ‘karma is a bitch.’

  8. I pray for more and more great lamas will speak up the truth of Dorje Shugden in order for the ban to be lifted. This is so important because many practitioners are suffer due to the ban. Tibetan community has very harmony in their spiritual practice before the ban. However the Dorje Shugden ban has created disharmony, fear and division among the Tibetan Community. It is the responsibility of the Dorje Shugden lamas and practitioners to step out and speak up in order to stop CTA to use Shugden issues to cover their failure and cause more suffering to Tibetans, and the Dorje Shugden ban must be lifted swiftly to united the Tibetans and together to work towards a better life.

  9. I’m grateful that many great spirits have courageously & firmly holding on their beliefs & fights for justice for the sake of peace & love.

    We must learn from them & never create more wars, hatred on this world..

  10. It’s nice to see the another high lama spoke up about the unjust ban of Dorje Shugden and in this case Zasep Rinpoche also mentioned how powerful Dorje Shugden and being practice by other lineages.

    Dorje Shugden has been practice for the past 400 years and never have any problem but just due to the political reason Dorje Shugden become a demon in a split second. Reading the account from Zasep Rinpoche showing how Dorje Shugden help His Holiness the Dalai Lama escape from Tibet is not something new but is has been mentioned by many consistently. If Dorje Shugden is a demon then why listen to him during that time? And if were to listen to Nechung to stay in Tibet imagine what would happen to His Holiness and also Tibetan Buddhism as a whole?

    Tibetan leadership never show any concrete facts of Shugden ban but just split their people just for their political or rather personal interest. The world are watching and will not tolerate in term on religious freedom and human rights.

  11. I am great to see more gelupa lama like Zasep Rinpoche about Dorje Shugden practice. History has told the truth about how was Dorje Shugden ready is. CTA cannot stop all of this. People in thïs day still not give his practice and increasing doing his practice world wise. It tell a lot who is Dorje Shugden ready are. CTA will not able to put him down so easy. How can human go against to the divine. Is ready look stupid and sily.

  12. Truly respect and honor to H.E Zasep Rinpoche of his truthful and sincere writings on his book regarding Dorje Shugden and as well as CTA. The fact is there, CTA can’t avoid from it anymore. This is rejoicing news for more evidence proves Dorje Shugden is NOT a demonic practice and lousy and atrocious colony of CTA.

  13. It is very brave of Zasep Rinpoche to point out the Dorje Shugden ban is created by the CTA with a political agenda behind it. The ban was imposed 20 over years ago, it was very shocking for many people at that time. The ban has done a lot of damage to the Tibetan community, there is no unity and harmony among the Tibetans.

    After the ban was imposed, many friends and families were separated. Husband and wife split because one wanted to continue and the one won’t. Children whose families are Dorje Shugden followers would be bullied and isolated in the school. The business owners and monasteries put up signs to disallow the Dorje Shugden followers from going in. The monks are forced to swear when they are not supposed to.

    The CTA did all this because they want to cover their failure in getting Tibet back. They need someone to take the blame. The fact is, the CTA has never been serious about the free Tibet movement. They are making use of the situation to get financial aids from the west, they are very selfish.

  14. “The bottom line is its not about whether anyone trusts or likes China but whether China can help these countries advance their own respective national interests. And the answer is yes. Correspondingly the question is whether any country can afford not to access China’s vast consumer market moving into the future. Not doing business is bad for local economies and no one will elect or re-elect a government that presides over a failing economy.”~NY Times

    How China Has Defied Expectations, in Canada and Around the Globe
    By Ian Austen
    Nov. 23, 2018
    In Saskatchewan, farming is done on a grand scale. So when I visited the Canadian Western Agribition in Regina this week for an upcoming story, I wasn’t surprised to find that the annual gathering of Western farmers is almost overwhelmingly large, luring 127,000 visitors last year to a city of 215,000.
    Like all agricultural exhibitions, the Agribition has a wide array of activities for city dwellers like me, including a rodeo, horse shows and cattle judging. But what started as a regional exhibition 48 years ago has grown into a global event. Cattle ranchers, many from distant parts of North America, parade their livestock to buyers from around the world looking to improve their herds.
    When I asked breeders where their customers come from these days, many of them said China.
    Canada, like the rest of the world, has not escaped the effects of China’s move from isolated backwater to a global economic and political force. For the past several months, more than a dozen New York Times reporters, editors, photographers and designers have been examining China’s dramatic rise in a project called China Rules, which launched this week.
    Phil Pan, our Hong Kong-based Asia editor, has worked in China for about two decades and returned to writing to produce the must-read opening essay on how China’s rise has defied expectations.
    Political shifts in Washington and Beijing helped influence the timing of the series. “One factor was certainly a sense at the beginning of the year that America under Trump was in retreat or withdrawing from the world,” Phil said.
    Under President Xi Jinping, China saw an opportunity to step up, he said. And in recent months, he said, “We began to see this fundamental shift in the relationship between the U.S. and China from engagement to competition.”
    While President Trump has attacked China and launched a trade war against it, Canada has taken an opposing track. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said repeatedly that his government is moving toward a full-scale free trade agreement with China, though that movement’s progress has been stately, at best.
    And Mr. Trudeau’s government continues to rebuff American security warnings about allowing equipment made from Huawei Technologies, the Chinese telecommunications company with research operations in Canada, into the coming upgrade of Canada’s wireless networks.
    I asked Phil if Canadians can, or should, trust China.
    “I think the debate in Canada and the United States probably will be much less about trust than about interests,” he said. “Is the fact that the Chinese political system is authoritarian a problem for our national interest?”
    Here, for your weekend reading pleasure, is more from our China Rules series:
    • The American Dream Is Alive. In China.
    • How China Made Its Own Internet
    • How China Took Over Your TV
    • How China Is Writing its Own (Hollywood) Script
    • The World, Built by China
    Among the stories still to come in the series is an examination of China’s authoritarian control of its citizens, as well as articles on how the country is challenging the global, liberal democratic order and why its economic rise left many Western economists red-faced.
    If after reading China Rules, you’d like to discuss the series, we have a new Facebook group: Examining China’s Reach With The New York Times.
    In Conversation
    Mark Thompson, president and chief executive officer of The New York Times Company, will join Chrystia Freeland, Canada’s minister of foreign affairs, in conversation at the University of Toronto on Tuesday, December 11. The two will discuss U.S.-Canada relations, foreign policy challenges and more. Details and ticket information are available here.
    And a final reminder that Sam Tanenhaus, a former editor of The New York Times Book Review, will moderate a panel on book reviewing on Friday, Nov. 30, also in Toronto. Use the code CANADALETTER for $5 off the ticket price.
    Trans Canada
    —The turmoil that followed the arrest of six teenagers accused of sexual assault during hazing rituals at an elite private school in Toronto is prompting some Canadians to question the value of all-boys schools.
    —Canada is pushing the United States to end steel and aluminum tariffs before the ceremonial signing of the replacement deal for Nafta. But Washington is considering another, similarly unappealing measure to replace the duties.
    —An art historian from Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario is among the curators of an exhibit that uses imaging technology to peel back the layers of Bruegel’s complex masterpieces.
    —In Opinion, Amanda Siebert wrote that the legalization of recreational marijuana in Canada will allow medical research to blossom.
    —While the United States dithers, Canada has approved new regulations that will allow for the sale of cars with headlights that automatically adjust their beams, letting drivers see farther down the road without blinding oncoming traffic.
    A native of Windsor, Ontario, Ian Austen was educated in Toronto, lives in Ottawa and has reported about Canada for The New York Times for the past 15 years. Follow him on Twitter at @ianrausten.
    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/23/world/canada/china-defied-expectations-canada.html

  15. Everyone is expecting a communist China to fail. But in fact China is getting stronger and bigger and more powerful. China proves communism can work to the chagrin of ‘democratic’ countries such as the US who is jealous and threatened of their own status quo. China will continue to grow according to the New York Times.

    The Land That Failed to Fail
    The West was sure the Chinese approach would not work. It just had to wait. It’s still waiting.
    By PHILIP P. PAN
    Photographs by BRYAN DENTON
    NOV. 18, 2018
    In the uncertain years after Mao’s death, long before China became an industrial juggernaut, before the Communist Party went on a winning streak that would reshape the world, a group of economics students gathered at a mountain retreat outside Shanghai. There, in the bamboo forests of Moganshan, the young scholars grappled with a pressing question: How could China catch up with the West?
    It was the autumn of 1984, and on the other side of the world, Ronald Reagan was promising “morning again in America.” China, meanwhile, was just recovering from decades of political and economic turmoil. There had been progress in the countryside, but more than three-quarters of the population still lived in extreme poverty. The state decided where everyone worked, what every factory made and how much everything cost.
    The students and researchers attending the Academic Symposium of Middle-Aged and Young Economists wanted to unleash market forces but worried about crashing the economy — and alarming the party bureaucrats and ideologues who controlled it.
    Late one night, they reached a consensus: Factories should meet state quotas but sell anything extra they made at any price they chose. It was a clever, quietly radical proposal to undercut the planned economy — and it intrigued a young party official in the room who had no background in economics. “As they were discussing the problem, I didn’t say anything at all,” recalled Xu Jing’an, now 76 and retired. “I was thinking, how do we make this work?”
    The Chinese economy has grown so fast for so long now that it is easy to forget how unlikely its metamorphosis into a global powerhouse was, how much of its ascent was improvised and born of desperation. The proposal that Mr. Xu took from the mountain retreat, soon adopted as government policy, was a pivotal early step in this astounding transformation.
    China now leads the world in the number of homeowners, internet users, college graduates and, by some counts, billionaires. Extreme poverty has fallen to less than 1 percent. An isolated, impoverished backwater has evolved into the most significant rival to the United States since the fall of the Soviet Union.
    An epochal contest is underway. With President Xi Jinping pushing a more assertive agenda overseas and tightening controls at home, the Trump administration has launched a trade war and is gearing up for what could be a new Cold War. Meanwhile, in Beijing the question these days is less how to catch up with the West than how to pull ahead — and how to do so in a new era of American hostility.
    The pattern is familiar to historians, a rising power challenging an established one, with a familiar complication: For decades, the United States encouraged and aided China’s rise, working with its leaders and its people to build the most important economic partnership in the world, one that has lifted both nations.
    During this time, eight American presidents assumed, or hoped, that China would eventually bend to what were considered the established rules of modernization: Prosperity would fuel popular demands for political freedom and bring China into the fold of democratic nations. Or the Chinese economy would falter under the weight of authoritarian rule and bureaucratic rot.
    But neither happened. Instead, China’s Communist leaders have defied expectations again and again. They embraced capitalism even as they continued to call themselves Marxists. They used repression to maintain power but without stifling entrepreneurship or innovation. Surrounded by foes and rivals, they avoided war, with one brief exception, even as they fanned nationalist sentiment at home. And they presided over 40 years of uninterrupted growth, often with unorthodox policies the textbooks said would fail.
    In late September, the People’s Republic of China marked a milestone, surpassing the Soviet Union in longevity. Days later, it celebrated a record 69 years of Communist rule. And China may be just hitting its stride — a new superpower with an economy on track to become not just the world’s largest but, quite soon, the largest by a wide margin.
    The world thought it could change China, and in many ways it has. But China’s success has been so spectacular that it has just as often changed the world — and the American understanding of how the world works.
    There is no simple explanation for how China’s leaders pulled this off. There was foresight and luck, skill and violent resolve, but perhaps most important was the fear — a sense of crisis among Mao’s successors that they never shook, and that intensified after the Tiananmen Square massacre and the collapse of the Soviet Union.
    Even as they put the disasters of Mao’s rule behind them, China’s Communists studied and obsessed over the fate of their old ideological allies in Moscow, determined to learn from their mistakes. They drew two lessons: The party needed to embrace “reform” to survive — but “reform” must never include democratization.
    China has veered between these competing impulses ever since, between opening up and clamping down, between experimenting with change and resisting it, always pulling back before going too far in either direction for fear of running aground.
    Many people said that the party would fail, that this tension between openness and repression would be too much for a nation as big as China to sustain. But it may be precisely why China soared.
    Whether it can continue to do so with the United States trying to stop it is another question entirely.
    Apparatchiks Into Capitalists
    None of the participants at the Moganshan conference could have predicted how China would take off, much less the roles they would play in the boom ahead. They had come of age in an era of tumult, almost entirely isolated from the rest of the world, with little to prepare them for the challenge they faced. To succeed, the party had to both reinvent its ideology and reprogram its best and brightest to carry it out.
    Mr. Xu, for example, had graduated with a degree in journalism on the eve of Mao’s violent Cultural Revolution, during which millions of people were purged, persecuted and killed. He spent those years at a “cadre school” doing manual labor and teaching Marxism in an army unit. After Mao’s death, he was assigned to a state research institute tasked with fixing the economy. His first job was figuring out how to give factories more power to make decisions, a subject he knew almost nothing about. Yet he went on to a distinguished career as an economic policymaker, helping launch China’s first stock market in Shenzhen.
    Among the other young participants in Moganshan were Zhou Xiaochuan, who would later lead China’s central bank for 15 years; Lou Jiwei, who ran China’s sovereign wealth fund and recently stepped down as finance minister; and an agricultural policy specialist named Wang Qishan, who rose higher than any of them.
    Mr. Wang headed China’s first investment bank and helped steer the nation through the Asian financial crisis. As Beijing’s mayor, he hosted the 2008 Olympics. Then he oversaw the party’s recent high-stakes crackdown on corruption. Now he is China’s vice president, second in authority only to Xi Jinping, the party’s leader.
    The careers of these men from Moganshan highlight an important aspect of China’s success: It turned its apparatchiks into capitalists.
    Bureaucrats who were once obstacles to growth became engines of growth. Officials devoted to class warfare and price controls began chasing investment and promoting private enterprise. Every day now, the leader of a Chinese district, city or province makes a pitch like the one Yan Chaojun made at a business forum in September.
    “Sanya,” Mr. Yan said, referring to the southern resort town he leads, “must be a good butler, nanny, driver and cleaning person for businesses, and welcome investment from foreign companies.”
    It was a remarkable act of reinvention, one that eluded the Soviets. In both China and the Soviet Union, vast Stalinist bureaucracies had smothered economic growth, with officials who wielded unchecked power resisting change that threatened their privileges.
    Mikhail Gorbachev, the last leader of the Soviet Union, tried to break the hold of these bureaucrats on the economy by opening up the political system. Decades later, Chinese officials still take classes on why that was a mistake. The party even produced a documentary series on the subject in 2006, distributing it on classified DVDs for officials at all levels to watch.
    Afraid to open up politically but unwilling to stand still, the party found another way. It moved gradually and followed the pattern of the compromise at Moganshan, which left the planned economy intact while allowing a market economy to flourish and outgrow it.
    Party leaders called this go-slow, experimental approach “crossing the river by feeling the stones” — allowing farmers to grow and sell their own crops, for example, while retaining state ownership of the land; lifting investment restrictions in “special economic zones,” while leaving them in place in the rest of the country; or introducing privatization by selling only minority stakes in state firms at first.
    “There was resistance,” Mr. Xu said. “Satisfying the reformers and the opposition was an art.”
    American economists were skeptical. Market forces needed to be introduced quickly, they argued; otherwise, the bureaucracy would mobilize to block necessary changes. After a visit to China in 1988, the Nobel laureate Milton Friedman called the party’s strategy “an open invitation to corruption and inefficiency.”
    But China had a strange advantage in battling bureaucratic resistance. The nation’s long economic boom followed one of the darkest chapters of its history, the Cultural Revolution, which decimated the party apparatus and left it in shambles. In effect, autocratic excess set the stage for Mao’s eventual successor, Deng Xiaoping, to lead the party in a radically more open direction.
    That included sending generations of young party officials to the United States and elsewhere to study how modern economies worked. Sometimes they enrolled in universities, sometimes they found jobs, and sometimes they went on brief “study tours.” When they returned, the party promoted their careers and arranged for others to learn from them.
    At the same time, the party invested in education, expanding access to schools and universities, and all but eliminating illiteracy. Many critics focus on the weaknesses of the Chinese system — the emphasis on tests and memorization, the political constraints, the discrimination against rural students. But mainland China now produces more graduates in science and engineering every year than the United States, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan combined.
    In cities like Shanghai, Chinese schoolchildren outperform peers around the world. For many parents, though, even that is not enough. Because of new wealth, a traditional emphasis on education as a path to social mobility and the state’s hypercompetitive college entrance exam, most students also enroll in after-school tutoring programs — a market worth $125 billion, according to one study, or as much as half the government’s annual military budget.
    Another explanation for the party’s transformation lies in bureaucratic mechanics. Analysts sometimes say that China embraced economic reform while resisting political reform. But in reality, the party made changes after Mao’s death that fell short of free elections or independent courts yet were nevertheless significant.
    The party introduced term limits and mandatory retirement ages, for example, making it easier to flush out incompetent officials. And it revamped the internal report cards it used to evaluate local leaders for promotions and bonuses, focusing them almost exclusively on concrete economic targets.
    These seemingly minor adjustments had an outsize impact, injecting a dose of accountability — and competition — into the political system, said Yuen Yuen Ang, a political scientist at the University of Michigan. “China created a unique hybrid,” she said, “an autocracy with democratic characteristics.”
    As the economy flourished, officials with a single-minded focus on growth often ignored widespread pollution, violations of labor standards, and tainted food and medical supplies. They were rewarded with soaring tax revenues and opportunities to enrich their friends, their relatives and themselves. A wave of officials abandoned the state and went into business. Over time, the party elite amassed great wealth, which cemented its support for the privatization of much of the economy it once controlled.
    The private sector now produces more than 60 percent of the nation’s economic output, employs over 80 percent of workers in cities and towns, and generates 90 percent of new jobs, a senior official said in a speech last year. As often as not, the bureaucrats stay out of the way.
    “I basically don’t see them even once a year,” said James Ni, chairman and founder of Mlily, a mattress manufacturer in eastern China. “I’m creating jobs, generating tax revenue. Why should they bother me?”
    In recent years, President Xi has sought to assert the party’s authority inside private firms. He has also bolstered state-owned enterprises with subsidies while preserving barriers to foreign competition. And he has endorsed demands that American companies surrender technology in exchange for market access.
    In doing so, he is betting that the Chinese state has changed so much that it should play a leading role in the economy — that it can build and run “national champions” capable of outcompeting the United States for control of the high-tech industries of the future. But he has also provoked a backlash in Washington.
    ‘Opening Up’
    In December, the Communist Party will celebrate the 40th anniversary of the “reform and opening up” policies that transformed China. The triumphant propaganda has already begun, with Mr. Xi putting himself front and center, as if taking a victory lap for the nation.
    He is the party’s most powerful leader since Deng and the son of a senior official who served Deng, but even as he wraps himself in Deng’s legacy, Mr. Xi has set himself apart in an important way: Deng encouraged the party to seek help and expertise overseas, but Mr. Xi preaches self-reliance and warns of the threats posed by “hostile foreign forces.”
    In other words, he appears to have less use for the “opening up” part of Deng’s slogan.
    Of the many risks that the party took in its pursuit of growth, perhaps the biggest was letting in foreign investment, trade and ideas. It was an exceptional gamble by a country once as isolated as North Korea is today, and it paid off in an exceptional way: China tapped into a wave of globalization sweeping the world and emerged as the world’s factory. China’s embrace of the internet, within limits, helped make it a leader in technology. And foreign advice helped China reshape its banks, build a legal system and create modern corporations.
    The party prefers a different narrative these days, presenting the economic boom as “grown out of the soil of China” and primarily the result of its leadership. But this obscures one of the great ironies of China’s rise — that Beijing’s former enemies helped make it possible.
    The United States and Japan, both routinely vilified by party propagandists, became major trading partners and were important sources of aid, investment and expertise. The real game changers, though, were people like Tony Lin, a factory manager who made his first trip to the mainland in 1988.
    Mr. Lin was born and raised in Taiwan, the self-governing island where those who lost the Chinese civil war fled after the Communist Revolution. As a schoolboy, he was taught that mainland China was the enemy.
    But in the late 1980s, the sneaker factory he managed in central Taiwan was having trouble finding workers, and its biggest customer, Nike, suggested moving some production to China. Mr. Lin set aside his fears and made the trip. What he found surprised him: a large and willing work force, and officials so eager for capital and know-how that they offered the use of a state factory free and a five-year break on taxes.
    Mr. Lin spent the next decade shuttling to and from southern China, spending months at a time there and returning home only for short breaks to see his wife and children. He built and ran five sneaker factories, including Nike’s largest Chinese supplier.
    “China’s policies were tremendous,” he recalled. “They were like a sponge absorbing water, money, technology, everything.”
    Mr. Lin was part of a torrent of investment from ethnic Chinese enclaves in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore and beyond that washed over China — and gave it a leg up on other developing countries. Without this diaspora, some economists argue, the mainland’s transformation might have stalled at the level of a country like Indonesia or Mexico.
    The timing worked out for China, which opened up just as Taiwan was outgrowing its place in the global manufacturing chain. China benefited from Taiwan’s money, but also its managerial experience, technology and relationships with customers around the world. In effect, Taiwan jump-started capitalism in China and plugged it into the global economy.
    Before long, the government in Taiwan began to worry about relying so much on its onetime enemy and tried to shift investment elsewhere. But the mainland was too cheap, too close and, with a common language and heritage, too familiar. Mr. Lin tried opening factories in Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia but always came back to China.
    Now Taiwan finds itself increasingly dependent on a much more powerful China, which is pushing ever harder for unification, and the island’s future is uncertain.
    There are echoes of Taiwan’s predicament around the world, where many are having second thoughts about how they rushed to embrace Beijing with trade and investment.
    The remorse may be strongest in the United States, which brought China into the World Trade Organization, became China’s largest customer and now accuses it of large-scale theft of technology — what one official called “the greatest transfer of wealth in history.”
    Many in Washington predicted that trade would bring political change. It did, but not in China. “Opening up” ended up strengthening the party’s hold on power rather than weakening it. The shock of China’s rise as an export colossus, however, was felt in factory towns around the world.
    In the United States, economists say at least two million jobs disappeared as a result, many in districts that ended up voting for President Trump.
    Selective Repression
    Over lunch at a luxurious private club on the 50th floor of an apartment tower in central Beijing, one of China’s most successful real estate tycoons explained why he had left his job at a government research center after the crackdown on the student-led democracy movement in Tiananmen Square.
    “It was very easy,” said Feng Lun, the chairman of Vantone Holdings, which manages a multibillion-dollar portfolio of properties around the world. “One day, I woke up and everyone had run away. So I ran, too.”
    Until the soldiers opened fire, he said, he had planned to spend his entire career in the civil service. Instead, as the party was pushing out those who had sympathized with the students, he joined the exodus of officials who started over as entrepreneurs in the 1990s.
    “At the time, if you held a meeting and told us to go into business, we wouldn’t have gone,” he recalled. “So this incident, it unintentionally planted seeds in the market economy.”
    Such has been the seesaw pattern of the party’s success.
    The pro-democracy movement in 1989 was the closest the party ever came to political liberalization after Mao’s death, and the crackdown that followed was the furthest it went in the other direction, toward repression and control. After the massacre, the economy stalled and retrenchment seemed certain. Yet three years later, Deng used a tour of southern China to wrestle the party back to “reform and opening up” once more.
    Many who had left the government, like Mr. Feng, suddenly found themselves leading the nation’s transformation from the outside, as its first generation of private entrepreneurs.
    Now Mr. Xi is steering the party toward repression again, tightening its grip on society, concentrating power in his own hands and setting himself up to rule for life by abolishing the presidential term limit. Will the party loosen up again, as it did a few years after Tiananmen, or is this a more permanent shift? If it is, what will it mean for the Chinese economic miracle?
    The fear is that Mr. Xi is attempting to rewrite the recipe behind China’s rise, replacing selective repression with something more severe.
    The party has always been vigilant about crushing potential threats — a fledgling opposition party, a popular spiritual movement, even a dissident writer awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. But with some big exceptions, it has also generally retreated from people’s personal lives and given them enough freedom to keep the economy growing.
    The internet is an example of how it has benefited by striking a balance. The party let the nation go online with barely an inkling of what that might mean, then reaped the economic benefits while controlling the spread of information that could hurt it.
    In 2011, it confronted a crisis. After a high-speed train crash in eastern China, more than 30 million messages criticizing the party’s handling of the fatal accident flooded social media — faster than censors could screen them.
    Panicked officials considered shutting down the most popular service, Weibo, the Chinese equivalent of Twitter, but the authorities were afraid of how the public would respond. In the end, they let Weibo stay open but invested much more in tightening controls and ordered companies to do the same.
    The compromise worked. Now, many companies assign hundreds of employees to censorship duties — and China has become a giant on the global internet landscape.
    “The cost of censorship is quite limited compared to the great value created by the internet,” said Chen Tong, an industry pioneer. “We still get the information we need for economic progress.”
    A ‘New Era’
    China is not the only country that has squared the demands of authoritarian rule with the needs of free markets. But it has done so for longer, at greater scale and with more convincing results than any other.
    The question now is whether it can sustain this model with the United States as an adversary rather than a partner.
    The trade war has only just begun. And it is not just a trade war. American warships and planes are challenging Chinese claims to disputed waters with increasing frequency even as China keeps ratcheting up military spending. And Washington is maneuvering to counter Beijing’s growing influence around the world, warning that a Chinese spending spree on global infrastructure comes with strings attached.
    The two nations may yet reach some accommodation. But both left and right in America have portrayed China as the champion of an alternative global order, one that embraces autocratic values and undermines fair competition. It is a rare consensus for the United States, which is deeply divided about so much else, including how it has wielded power abroad in recent decades — and how it should do so now.
    Mr. Xi, on the other hand, has shown no sign of abandoning what he calls “the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.” Some in his corner have been itching to take on the United States since the 2008 financial crisis and see the Trump administration’s policies as proof of what they have always suspected — that America is determined to keep China down.
    At the same time, there is also widespread anxiety over the new acrimony, because the United States has long inspired admiration and envy in China, and because of a gnawing sense that the party’s formula for success may be faltering.
    Prosperity has brought rising expectations in China; the public wants more than just economic growth. It wants cleaner air, safer food and medicine, better health care and schools, less corruption and greater equality. The party is struggling to deliver, and tweaks to the report cards it uses to measure the performance of officials hardly seem enough.
    “The basic problem is, who is growth for?” said Mr. Xu, the retired official who wrote the Moganshan report. “We haven’t solved this problem.”
    Growth has begun to slow, which may be better for the economy in the long term but could shake public confidence. The party is investing ever more in censorship to control discussion of the challenges the nation faces: widening inequality, dangerous debt levels, an aging population.
    Mr. Xi himself has acknowledged that the party must adapt, declaring that the nation is entering a “new era” requiring new methods. But his prescription has largely been a throwback to repression, including vast internment camps targeting Muslim ethnic minorities. “Opening up” has been replaced by an outward push, with huge loans that critics describe as predatory and other efforts to gain influence — or interfere — in the politics of other countries. At home, experimentation is out while political orthodoxy and discipline are in.
    In effect, Mr. Xi seems to believe that China has been so successful that the party can return to a more conventional authoritarian posture — and that to survive and surpass the United States it must.
    Certainly, the momentum is still with the party. Over the past four decades, economic growth in China has been 10 times faster than in the United States, and it is still more than twice as fast. The party appears to enjoy broad public support, and many around the world are convinced that Mr. Trump’s America is in retreat while China’s moment is just beginning.
    Then again, China has a way of defying expectations.
    Philip P. Pan is The Times’s Asia Editor and author of “Out of Mao’s Shadow: The Struggle for the Soul of a New China.” He has lived in and reported on China for nearly two decades.
    Jonathan Ansfield and Keith Bradsher contributed reporting from Beijing. Claire Fu, Zoe Mou and Iris Zhao contributed research from Beijing, and Carolyn Zhang from Shanghai.
    Design: Matt Ruby, Rumsey Taylor, Quoctrung Bui Editing: Tess Felder, Eric Nagourney, David Schmidt Photo Editing: Craig Allen, Meghan Petersen, Mikko Takkunen Illustrations: Sergio Peçanh

    https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2018/11/25/world/asia/china-rules.html

  16. India and China now pushing ahead with resolution of their border disputes. It looks like India is finally ready to officially drop the Tibet card.

    Excerpt:

    “India and China will have “early harvest” talks on their vexed border dispute as many agreements have been reached by both sides since their top leaders met in Wuhan, Beijing said on Monday”.

    Sino-Indian ‘early harvest’ spells scorched earth for Tibetan dreams.

    Too bad for Tibetans in India. Too bad for Tibetan leadership. Their karma coming back soon for all the harms they have done.

    India, China for ‘early harvest’ talks on border
    November 27, 2018
    BEIJING: India and China will have “early harvest” talks on their vexed border dispute as many agreements have been reached by both sides since their top leaders met in Wuhan, Beijing said on Monday.
    Days after India and China pledged to intensify their efforts to resolve a decades-long boundary feud in their border talks, the Chinese Foreign Ministry said that New Delhi and Beijing have agreed to authorise the Working Mechanism for Consultation and Coordination on border affairs to start “early harvest consultations.”
    The Ministry’s spokesperson Geng Shuang said India’s National Security Advisor and Chinese State Councillor had a constructive and forward-looking meeting at the 21st round of border talks last week.
    Asked what he meant by “early harvest,” Geng did not elaborate.
    “After the Wuhan summit between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping, the bilateral relations have made very positive progress and made new developments.
    Indo-Asian News Service
    http://gulftoday.ae/portal/f8b61f20-9429-48df-b61d-06df2e236b51.aspx

  17. Dear Lobsang Sangye and Tibetan Govt in exile in Dharamsala,

    How come after 60 years you are still not at the G20 meetings? How come you cannot get your country back? How come the world economies and power are shifting towards the East which is China? How come you cannot get Tibetan autonomy, or freedom or any leeway with China? How come your negotiations with China is a failure and you produced nothing?

    You run around begging for FREE MONEY from Europe, Australia, Japan, Canada, Taiwan and US for 60 years now but no one in your refugee community has made it big or successful? Where did all the money go? In your pockets? How come all your Tibetans from India/Nepal are going back to Tibet or leaving to the west. How come your schools in India are empty? How come Dharamsala is emptying out?

    How come you are getting weaker and more world governments are ignoring you? How come more are paying attention to China? Less governments are willing to pay attention to you and the Tibet cause? Where is all your rangzen groups? How come they are not effective? Maybe they are disillusioned with your corruption, lies and underhanded tactics and human rights abuses using religion to divide your own people?

    What happened to you? Why are you and your community your Tibetan ‘parliament’ such losers and failures? How come you cannot achieve anything?

    Are you going to continue to beg for more FREE MONEY to fund your trips, houses, children’s education, vacations, five star hotels, nice brocade chubas, expensive accessories, and properties. You know the ordinary Tibetan in India has gotten nothing in financial help of the hundreds of millions in aid for that last 60 years you Tibetan exiled government pocketed. Is that why your Tibetan people in India and Nepal are all leaving to back to Tibet and the west? You failed?

    Your policies and work are not effective.

    Too bad.

    China rises at the G20
    The global balance of power is shifting from West to East
    Tensions loom over Argentina, which plays host to the 2018 summit of the G20 which started on November 30. The G20 is an international forum of the EU and the heads of state of 19 major economies, which discusses global economic challenges. And the challenges are mounting.
    Globalization is in reverse, as the US threatens to escalate its trade war with China and other trading partners; and xenophobia is rife in many Western countries. These challenges are a threat to global prosperity, but what will shape much of the long-term evolution of the global economy is the rise of China and other emerging economies.
    Much of the focus at the G20 has been on Donald Trump and his series of sidebar meetings with other leaders, especially Xi Jinping. Trump has said that it is “highly unlikely” that he would postpone the planned increase in tariff levels from 10% to 25% on $200 billion of Chinese goods in January 2019.
    Of course, this may be bluster and a frequent refrain from apologists for Trump is: “Take note of what the president does, not what he says.” But we may be on the cusp of a full-blown trade war, which will not be confined to the US and China and which will reverse and reconfigure globalization. Entering foreign markets will be more costly and global supply chains will be disrupted.
    Globalization is not inevitable
    The notion that globalization is a natural phenomenon, akin to the change in the seasons or the weather or gravity, is a frequent refrain. During his tenure as prime minister of the United Kingdom, Tony Blair opined: “I hear people say we have to stop and debate globalization. You might as well debate whether autumn should follow summer.” A pithy turn of phrase, but patently not true.
    The configuration and extent of globalization are shaped by public policy and technological change. When this changes, it can, in turn, accelerate, slow, or reverse globalization. In periods of severe economic crisis, it has been common for countries to become inward looking — blaming “others” for economic problems and resorting to protectionism and controls on immigration.
    In the interwar period, for example, the response to the Great Depression was a trade war and competitive devaluations as the Gold Standard unraveled. Similarly, since the 2008-09 financial crisis and the Great Recession that followed, there has been a worldwide rise in protectionist measures and Trump’s interventions may lead to a new phase of “delocalization.”
    An evolving global economic order
    Major economic crises often reflect endemic flaws within the structure of the global economy and lead to major changes in global economic leadership. The crises and lessons of the interwar period led to the establishment of the Bretton Woods system, which managed the world economy during the post-war golden age of capitalism until the early 1970s. It was the system that created new international institutions (the IMF, World Bank, and GATT, which was the forerunner of the WTO) and this was underpinned by the dominance of the US economy.
    But the relative strength of the US (and the dollar) declined and the system unraveled in the late 1960s and early 1970s. This collapse, and a series of oil crises, led to another major economic crisis which temporarily stalled globalization and led to shifting reliance on the power of unfettered market forces.
    Liberal market capitalism may have been unleashed, but is still not ubiquitous in the world economy. The picture of a fully globalized world and the dominance of free markets is a partial distortion of a complex picture. The extent to which countries have embraced the global market agenda is highly variable.
    Although many developed countries have deregulated financial markets, capital controls and managed currencies are still highly prevalent in developing countries. In terms of trade, tariffs have been reduced since World War II but they have not been eradicated.
    Meanwhile, the use of non-tariff barriers has increased, with roughly 80% of all traded goods affected by these restrictive rules and regulations — and these are prevalent in developed countries. The ongoing chaos of Brexit illustrates that “free trade” is not a natural state but is negotiated, complex, and dependent on a litany of regulations and agreements.
    Deregulation, the hollowing out of the welfare state, and intensified global competition have led to rising income and wealth inequality in many Western countries. And many of those who have not benefited from globalization have also borne the brunt of the austerity policies that followed the financial crisis and the Great Recession. The resulting backlash against globalization helps explain the election of Trump and the vote for Brexit.
    The rise of China
    The G20 will focus on current instability but there are long-term structural shifts which are leading to a rebalancing of the global economy. The balance of power is shifting from West to East and we are in the early stages of transition to China as the dominant world economy.
    China is already the largest economy in the world (measured in purchasing power parity) and PwC (using World Bank data) estimates that by 2050, the Chinese economy will be 72% larger than the US. Further, by 2050, six of the largest eight economies will be countries that are still emerging markets.
    China is home to many of the world’s largest companies, including major tech companies like Alibaba and Tencent. It is investing rapidly in research and innovation and although the dollar remains the dominant world currency, the IMF has added the renminbi to its basket of global reserve currencies. It will only become more important as Trump’s policy of American isolationism continues.
    This year’s G20 summit will focus on maintaining some semblance of international cooperation and preventing a global trade war. The short-term noise will probably come from Trump. But China can play a long-term game as its position in the global economy is on the rise. In the face of the gales of the long-term shifts in the global economy, Trump can blow hard now — but as far as the future is concerned, he will be blowing in the wind.
    Michael Kitson is University Senior Lecturer in International Macroeconomics, Cambridge Judge Business School. This article previously appeared in Reuters.
    https://www.dhakatribune.com/opinion/op-ed/2018/12/01/china-rises-at-the-g20

  18. TIBETANS SHOULD NOT HAVE MONKS AS LEADERS, THAT IS A BIG MISTAKE

    Note what Namdol Lhagyari said is progressive and unlike the usual Tibetan rhetoric:

    “The problem I see right now is how reliant we are on one individual,” Namdol Lhagyari, 32, the youngest member of Tibet’s exile parliament, said. “I understand that every freedom movement requires one role model, one leader, who would push everyone in the right direction, bring everyone to one goal. But he has reached an age where we will have to prepare ourselves for a post-Dalai Lama.”

    Source: https://themediaproject.org/news/2018/12/3/as-the-dalai-lama-ages-tibetan-exiles-turn-to-secular-unity-over-sacred

    👎

    These are important points to remember:

    1. Tibetan lamas and monks SHOULD not enter politics. They should not hold positions of power, leadership and political roles. It will demean the Dharma. They are not trained, nor qualified nor have the credentials to be in government. They also do much damage to religion as people start to respect them less. The lines between respecting them as spiritual beings (sangha) and speaking against them when they are in government and make wrong decisions become blurred.

    2. Monks and nuns should not get involved with the running of the country but should stick to education. Giving good education to the public about ethics, morality and in some cases Buddhism. No one wants to see a political monk or nun. Because it contradicts the very reason they renounced the worldly life in order to enter a life of contemplation, learning, meditation and gaining enlightenment.

    3. Look at other countries where Buddhism is strong where sangha is sangha and never get involved with government or being public officials. In Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Burma, Sri Lanka etc where there are tens of thousands of sangha, you don’t see them in the government at all. Local or national governments both do not have sangha. Even in Christian countries you don’t see priests in government. That is Tibet’s big mistake to place monks/high lamas in so many government positions and as public officials. Very dangerous for the country as it has proven with Tibet and Tibetans.

    4. Monks, nuns and high lamas should do dharma practice, produce books, videos, give teachings, guide the public, do funerals, blessings, be a nurturer, study dharma, build real temples, keep existing temples spiritual, animal shelters, environmentalists, be mediators, help with orphanages, shelters, the poor, half way houses, poor houses, and basically all sorts of charities that benefit the mind and body of sentient beings that is NOT GOVERNMENT BASED. If sangha gives good education, they can produce kind and good leaders to run the country.

    Tibetans should never never never allow Sangha (monks, nuns and spiritual personages) to be involved with government, politics and rule of law because it ends up in disaster. That is how Tibet lost it’s country and will never get it back. There are too many monks in the Tibetan Parliament and as leaders remember Samdhong Rinpoche as the prime minister of exiles. That was very bad. The King of Tibet currently is a monk. How does that look? Very political.
    Tibet made that huge mistake and Tibet will never recover from it.

    Forum: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/forum/index.php?topic=6226.0

  19. I respect Zasep Rinpoche a lot as He is one of the high Lamas that proudly continue his practice of Dorje Shugden openly after the ban. He is a pure and attained lama of Tibet. He practices pure Dharma and engages in Dorje Shugden as his Dharma protector to help him along his spiritual journey. He did not give up nor turn his back to Dorje Shugden because of Dalai Lama said so. He knows what’s true what’s not. He knows clearly about the CTA political motive.

    If one cannot hold your Buddhists vows by creating discrimination and schism among sangha and Buddhists, need not talk about other moral qualities or vows or how pure you trying to protect the lineage. The fact is Dorje Shugden has been practicing massively for the last 400 years. Why only today Dorje Shugden suddenly became a demon and all His practitioners became traitor? If this is true then Tibetan Buddhism would have been collapsed long time ago.

  20. Differences between Dalai Lama and CTA president put Tibetan politics in a tailspin
    By Rajeev Sharma, November 27, 2018 SouthasianMonitor.com

    Tibetan politics is in a tailspin as there are signs of serious differences between the 14th Dalai Lama, unquestionably the supreme and undisputed leader of the Tibetans, and Lobsang Sangay, president of the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA).

    The immediate provocation is the unceremonious cancellation of the 13th Religious Conference of the Schools of Tibetan Buddhism and Bon Tradition, which was scheduled between November 29 and December 1 year in Dharamshala. Insiders have revealed that the conference was cancelled by Lobsang without consulting the Dalai Lama.

    Even more intriguing is the timing of the move. Knowledgeable sources in the Tibetan establishment in India disclosed that Lobsang made the move while the Dalai Lama was travelling back from Japan, knowing that he wouldn’t be able to do anything to stop it.

    Tibetan politics is turning out to be a cloak-and-dagger mystery. According to sources, Lobsang waited until the Dalai Lama was on his way to the airport before ordering the Department of Religion and Culture to cancel the event. Interestingly, the cancellation of the conference is available by way of an announcement in English on the CTA website.

    The CTA’s Department of Religion and Culture announced that owing to the sudden demise of the supreme head of the Nyingma tradition, Kathok Getse Rinpoche, who passed away this week in Nepal and in respecting the sentiments of the followers of Nyingma tradition, the 13th Religious Conference of the Schools of Tibetan Buddhism and Bon Tradition was being indefinitely postponed.

    The department cited that many lamas and representatives of the Nyingma tradition were unable to participate because of Rinpoche’s passing away.

    On November 22, the CTA organised a prayer service to mourn the demise of Rinpoche, the 7th supreme head of the Nyingma school of Tibetan Buddhism. Rinpoche passed away following an accident on November 19 in Pharping, Nepal. He was 64.

    Sources say the Dalai Lama is furious with Lobsang Sangay for trying to take credit for his negotiations with China about returning to Tibet.

    Sangay claimed that the Dalai Lama has failed for 60 years in negotiations with China, but he has the power and ability to succeed. This is also an indication of how weak the Dalai Lama’s current position is. Sangay knows that the Dalai Lama has been negotiating with China about returning and he’s trying to position himself to take credit for it. Had this happened a few years ago the Dalai Lama would have had him removed, but since his cancer has become terminal, Sangay has been consolidating his position among the exiled community. He controls the press department of the Tibetan government-in-exile and has done so since he ousted Dicki Chhoyang.

    For the record, the head of the department, which cancelled the conference, was appointed by Sangay.

    By the time the Dalai Lama returned to India the event was cancelled and announcements were issued to the media while he was still in the flight, which would have prevented a confirmation with the Tibetan leader and nothing could have been done to stop it. The reason given for the cancellation was the death of a senior monk.

    Sources said that the real reason for the CTA president to keep the Dalai Lama in the dark was because the latter would decide again whether to back the Karmapa as his successor. The Karmapa issue has been a major reason of discord between the Dalai Lama and the CTA president. Sources spoke about a telephonic conversation between the Dalai Lama and Sangay in this regard on November 22 when the former was in Japan.

    During this conversation, furious arguments broke out between the two. The Dalai Lama is said to have “shouted” at Sangay, saying that the Karmapa wouldn’t be chosen and that he wouldn’t be dictated terms by anyone. In this conversation, the Dalai Lama used some expletives in Tibetan language which he did not expect Sangay to understand as the CTA president doesn’t know the language. However, a Lobsang aide is said to have translated what the Dalai Lama said.

    This marks the most significant power play ever between the different factions within the Tibetan exile leadership. In other words, it’s now an all-out battle between the Dalai Lama and Lobsang Sangay over the future of the exile community, which may worsen in the days to come.

    (The writer is a columnist and strategic analyst who tweets @Kishkindha)

    Source: http://southasianmonitor.com/2018/11/27/differences-between-dalai-lama-and-cta-president-put-tibetan-politics-in-a-tailspin/

    ===================================

    This interesting article has much food for thought:

    1. Dalai Lama is angry and shouting expletives as Lobsang Sangay. Everyone knows the Dalai Lama is in full control. He claims he’s retired from politics but this is just to say what the west wants to hear so he can continue getting funding. It looks good to the west that he voluntarily gave up power and this makes him look progressive. But the Dalai Lama controls everything from behind and if you don’t agree with his decisions, he will be furious. Every Tibetan knows this well.

    2. Interesting the article mentions Dalai Lama’s cancer is terminal. Everyone knew this but the Dalai Lama tries to cover this point up. Why? Who knows? What is the problem if people knows he has cancer. Tibetan govt tries to play it down.

    3. Dalai Lama is angry as his successor will only be on his terms and no one else may dictate to him the terms as Lobsang Sangay tried to do so since it is not a democracy in practice. As all Tibetans know, the Dalai Lama is the Lama-King and he has full power and no one may contradict him. The face he shows the west (soft, friendly, diplomatic, easy-going, democratic) is all just for the west. The face Dalai Lama shows his Tibetan people (fierce, King, angersome, in charge and must be obeyed) is how it really is. Tibetans know the Dalai Lama controls everything and fully manages all politics. People are not happy with this but dare not speak up as there is no democracy.

    Writer Rajeev Sharma is telling the situation like it really is. Finally the truth is coming out. Tibetan government in exile is a regime in every sense of the world that depends on all the hundreds of millions of free dollars it has been taking from the west, Japan, Australia and so on. It exists on free money. It is not a good government and has failed all negotiations with China due to the Tibetan leaders’ arrogance. Why arrogance? They think the world will force China to do what Tibetans leaders want and that they are so important on everyone’s agenda. Tibetans are on no one’s top agenda and China is an economic and military super power. China will not and will never kowtow to the Tibetan demands. It is the Tibetans who must beg China to be friends and get some concessions if at all possible. No country has ever dared stand up to USA, but China has and China is growing in power yearly. Everyone is scrambling to be China’s friend and saying goodbye to the Tibetan cause. Tibetan cause is the thing of the past and no economic benefits to support Tibetan cause.

    These days every country votes in leaders that can better their country’s economy due to world recession. So every country has to do business and trade and aid with China to improve their economy. If you side with the Dalai Lama and Tibetan govt in exile in India, what do you get? Nothing! So leaders of every nation realize this now and will continue to make friends with China and say goodbye to the Dalai Lama. Dalai Lama on a personal level may be rich, famous and sells a lot of books, but that won’t get Tibet back. That won’t win the support of leaders of the free world and other nations.

    Dalai-Lama-ind-341

    Dalai Lama angry with Sangay

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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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