Articles
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Rejoicing Against Oppression

By Gregory Flannery Here’s a quick test: What comes to mind when you hear the word “Tibet”? The Chinese genocide against a small country; The Dalai Lama, apostle of nonviolence; An idiosyncratic Buddhist philosophy; or Momos, spicy Tibetan dumplings. All four are correct answers but momos are the most straightforward. Filled with beef or with…

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Between Worlds: Guardians in Tibet as Agents of Transformation

Introduction In a single step, one can cross the threshold of the Jokhang,1 stepping from the bustle of the Barkhor market to the devout atmosphere inside, moving from a heady jumble of merchants, soldiers, tourists and townsfolk, of warrens and back alleys teeming with shops and the sharp cries of peddlers, to a world of…

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Cincinnati Oracle Appears in India

Kuten Lama, head of a Tibetan Buddhist monastery in Cincinnati and leader of a Tibetan Buddhist lineage is at odds with the Dalai Lama. Last month, Kuten Lama helped to inaugurate a breakaway monastery in South India. Kuten Lama is an oracle, who takes possession of the spirit of Dorje Shugden, a deity banned by…

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Letter sent to the Indian Government for Protection

The letter here is self-explanatory. What is sad are the Monasteries need protection from the Dalai Lama and entourage. What has happened to come to this? The Dalai Lama is a symbol of compassion and peace, within the Tibetan communities, it seems he is very much feared. The ban has turned one Tibetan against another….

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Dalai Lama at Critical Crossroads

(Source : http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/7921862.stm) By Zoe Murphy BBC News Five decades in exile and years of denigration by Beijing have failed to weaken the Dalai Lama’s influence over Tibetans in his homeland and beyond. The Tibetan spiritual leader’s unwavering commitment to non-violence has also earned the world’s respect. But the long conflict over the status of…

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Dorje Shugden Initiation to 5000 People at Chamdo, Tibet

In early 2011 at Jinka Monastery in Dingqing County of Chamdo, Tibet, Khenpo Zongluo Jampa Khedrup Rinpoche of Chamdo Jampa Ling Monastery gave Dorje Shugden initiation to around 5,000 people!

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Through the Eyes of Dorje Shugden Buddhists

In recent years, Dorje Shugden has become a controversial issue in which many Western Buddhists who follow the Dorje Shugden deity of Tibetan Buddhism have raised the issue of religious freedom under the Dalai Lama. CNN’s report on Dorje Shugden: Dalai Lama Greeted by Protesters in Manhattan http://cnn.com/US/9805/03/buddhist.dissension/index.html As I did my research on Tibet,…

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Statement of Pomra Kamtsen

Statement of Pomra Kamtsen February 2008 This community of the Sera-Mey College has remained in peace and harmony, without ever having any conflict or schism, since the founding of the Sera monastery by Jamchen Choeche Shakya Yeshe in the year 1419 in Tibet, until now. After coming to India we have shared spiritual and material…

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For Dorje Shugden, For Dalai Lama

Readers can see for themselves what the two sides believe in and are going through. This article gives a broad overview of what the controversy is about and how it has affected the Tibetan community. Though dePrisco had originally written the article with a certain target audience in mind, we at dorjeshugden.com feel that this…

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Conflict, hypocrisy, and miscommunication

What are some human tendencies in responding to conflict? While walking this morning along the streets of Oxford (to a conference I am presenting at the weekend), I saw a group of people gathering and asked what was happening. They said the Dalai Lama was coming. So, like any tourist, I wanted to see him and get…

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A Controversial Tibetan Buddhist Deity

Dorje Shugden is generally believed to be a worldly protector deity that was likely practiced first in the Sakya Tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. According to some accounts he was inducted into the pantheon of Sakya protectors by Sakya Trizin Sonam Rinchen (1705-1741). Later placed together with the two protector deities Dorje Setrab and Tsi’u Marpo, they were collectively known as the Three…

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Does the Dorje Shugden ban affect Western Buddhists?

This article will focus on the real effects of the Dalai Lama’s ban of Dorje Shugden practice on Western practitioners. On web forums, supporters of the Dalai Lama are often non-plussed that Westerners are involving themselves in this issue at all. They say “this is a Tibetan issue that doesn’t affect you, so why are…

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Sad, Relatively Unknown News of Tibetan Buddhists’ Infighting

Several of my friends have approached me with eagerness to say, “The Dalai Lama is coming to Cincinnati! Are you going?” I remained neutral and answered that H.H. the Dalai Lama has requested that anyone from my lineage not attend his teachings. “What! Why?” Because of a hundreds-of-years-old conflict concerning a certain Dharma Protector (protecting…

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A Letter from Tibetan Shugden Practitioners in the USA to Radio Free Asia

Below is a letter written by Dorje Shugden practitioners living in the USA to Radio Free Asia in response to the article they published in which Prime Minister Samdhong is Encouraging Violence Against Shugden Practitioners. Dear Sirs: We are writing with regards to the recent news posting on December 24th 2010 on the website of…

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Nice art, troubled history

Issues around the worship of the Tibetan deity Dorje Shugden have been the source of much conflict ever since the deity and its associated practices were adopted by the Gelug sect of Tibetan Buddhism. But it was not the Gelugs who inducted the deity into the Tibetan Buddhist pantheon. In fact, it was only in…

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Dalai Lama messes with Tibetans’ minds

The Dalai Lama continues to spread pain throughout the Tibetan communities. Recently, a speech given to his followers during teachings in the Himalayan region of India were reported on the Tibetan radio station ‘Voice of Tibet’. Here is a transcript: Pachen Dorje (reporter): Today on the second day of his teaching in Varanasi, His Holiness…

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The Mahasiddha Bundasheri Tulku Guru Deva

Guru Deva Rinpoche, an incarnation of one of the 84 Siddhas, Bundasheri Tulku Guru Deva, was born in Mongolia for the sole purpose of creating “great benefits for the Dharma and all sentient beings”. He was a highly qualified Lama, having traveled to Tibet at the age of 20 and studied in the great Monastic…

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China’s Involvement in the Dorje Shugden Controversy

Though the Tibetan Government in Exile (TGIE) said at different times that China uses Shugden as a political means to split the Tibetan Community — e.g. by favouring monks practising Shugden or by supporting especially Tibetan monasteries in Tibet where Shugden is worshipped — it is rather hard to find written evidence on this. There…

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A Tibetan tempest over deity

by John Zurbrzycki, Christian Science Monitor Vol. 90 No. 120 1998.05.18 Dateline: NEW DELHI In a makeshift monastery on the outskirts of the Indian capital, a brass gong summons a group of maroon-robed monks for midday prayers. The scene could be from any of the hundreds of Buddhist monasteries in India, except that this gathering…

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The Dangers of Mixing Religion and Politics

Everyone raised in modern democratic nations realises the imperative of separating religion and politics. Painful history has shown the great dangers that arise when these two are intertwined. The spiritual path is profoundly damaged by being mixed with politics. Politicians make laws that citizens must abide by – but no laws can govern what someone…

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Untouchables – Shocking Posters in Monastery

Sera Je monastery is situated at the Tibetan settlement at Bylakupee, five hours by bus from Bangalore City, Karnataka State, India. Until this year, it was a monastery that was used by Shugden and non-Shugden practitioners alike. Since the introduction of the ban on Shugden practice made by the Dalai Lama, such harmony has been…

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Tibet Sun newspaper highlights Dalai Lama’s discrimination against  Shugden Practitioners

The Tibet Sun newspaper has highlighted the Dalai Lama’s discrimination against Shugden practitioners and how he transgresses the Indian laws against Deity discrimination and the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights. The article describes the Dalai Lama’s recent public teachings in Bodhgaya. People of all faiths – Christians, Hindus, Jews – were welcomed… with one…

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Dorje Shugden

Overview Dorje Shugden (Wylie: rdo-rje shugs-ldan), “Powerful thunderbolt”; also known as Dhol-rgyal) is a relatively recent, but very controversial, deity within the complex pantheons of Himalayan Buddhism. There exist different accounts and claims on Dorje Shugden’s origin, nature and function. Origin, Nature and Functions According to researcher Kay: “Whilst there is a consensus that this…

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A ban by any other name

The Tibetan exile-government have recently been saying that the Dalai Lama has not issued a ban against the practice or worship of the Buddhist Deity Dorje Shugden, but merely advised against this. The word ‘ban’ means ‘to prohibit esp. by legal means or social pressure’ (Longmans Dictionary); ‘formally prohibit’ or ‘formal or authoritative prohibition’ (The…

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Mountain Phoenix on Dorje Shugden

I’d like to draw your attention to a couple of blog posts by Tibetan Mountain Phoenix on her blog ‘Mountain Phoenix over Tibet’ which provides some interesting analyses of the Dorje Shugden issue from a less biased point of view than other Tibetan commentators: http://wisdombuddhadorjeshugden.blogspot.com/2010/10/mountain-phoenix-on-dorje-shugden.html Even though the blog posts were a couple of years…

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The Segregation Wall at Ganden Monastery

The new wall at Ganden Shartse monastery in Southern India was built in March of this year. (Editor’s note: The wall segregates Ganden Shartse Monastery from Shar Ganden Monastery, which was founded by monastics who do not want to renounce the Dorje Shugden practice. Read more about Shar Ganden Monastery. Watch the video about this…

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Schisms, murder, and hungry ghosts in Shangri-La

Millions of Buddhist monks have been killed, imprisoned, tortured, or driven into exile by the Communist Chinese since the 1950s in a deliberate, systematic destruction of a culture and a religion. The pacifist Buddhist monks are about as innocent and noble as victims can be; the Nobel Prize-winning Dalai Lama is perceived to be equally…

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Time Magazine – The Dalai Lama’s Buddhist Foes

Buddhist monks and nuns of the Shugden Society demonstrate against the Dalai Lama in front of New York’s Radio City Music Hall Thursday, July 17, 2008. It was not an object lesson in Buddhist dispassion. On Thursday afternoon, following a teaching by the Dalai Lama at New York City’s Radio City Music Hall, a group…

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Dorje Shugden in 3,211 words or less

Should the worship of Dorje Shugden – by devotees who consider the practice a sacred commitment – be banned by His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama? I chose this topic of research for a variety of reasons, not all of which may eventually become clear to the reader, but I do want to explain how…

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The Tradition of Oracles

In ancient times and throughout history, an oracle is a person or agency considered to be a source of wise counsel or prophetic opinion. It may also be a revealed prediction or precognition of the future from deities, that is spoken through another object or life-form (e.g.: augury and auspice). In the ancient world, many…

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Tibetan government-in-exile fears Chinese infiltrations

While Tibet’s exiled spiritual leader the Dalai Lama’s security remains the centre of concern, the Tibetan government-in-exile fears the “infiltration” of Chinese undercover agents in the hill-town that has been the nerve centre of the Tibetan movement. Fearing China could unleash its band of army-trained undercover agents in the town, the security wing of the…

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Cultivation of Rice Fields

From 29th of May 2010, Shar Gaden has started cultivating 20 acres of rice fields which were allotted to us during controversial partition in March 2008. In 1960s, Indian government allocated lands properties to every individual of Buzar monks one acre per a monk purposely for farming, so Gaden Shartse had nearly 90 members at…

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Nechung : The State Oracle of Tibet

Like many ancient civilizations of the world, the phenomenon of oracles remains an important part of the Tibetan way of life. Tibetans rely on oracles for various reasons. The purpose of the oracles is not just to foretell the future. They are called upon as protectors and sometimes used as healers. However, their primary function…

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The History and Significance of the Dharmapalas

  ‘Dharmapala’ – hoary Sanskrit from India, terra firma giving birth to the Vedas;’ The End of All Knowledge’, innumerable deities, home of the Ganges river and Buddha The Awakened One – means “…guardian of the teachings” Variously, the term is also used to mean defenders or protectors of the law of the ‘Diamond Vehicle’….

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Dharma Protector Dorje Shugden

Introduction to the Dharma Protector A Dharma Protector is an emanation of a Buddha or a Bodhisattva whose main functions are to avert the inner and outer obstacles that prevent practitioners from achieving spiritual realizations, and to arrange all the necessary conditions for their practice. In Tibet every monastery had its own Dharma Protector, but…

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A Teaching on Nyingma Protector Shenpa

By His Eminence Shenpen Dawa Rinpoche Los Angeles, California | September 1988 Secret: Only Initiated Practitioners The first protector I will speak about is Shenpa. Shenpa is very important for His Holiness’ swift rebirth, because he is the main protector of the Nyingma lineage. Shenpa is the main guardian for all of our practices: Troma,…

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A Teaching on Dharmapalas, from a Kagyu Perspective

by Choje Lama Namse Rinpoche Dharmapalas, Chos-skyong – “Protectors Lama Namse Rinpoche was born in Tsurphu, Tibet in 1930 and became a monk at the age of fifteen. He studied the Tibetan religious language, etymology, grammar, poetry, all major Hinayana and Mahayana texts and commentaries, as well as the philosophy of the various Buddhist schools…

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Nagarjuna’s Life, Legend and Works

Precious little is known about the actual life of the historical Nagarjuna. The two most extensive biographies of Nagarjuna, one in Chinese and the other in Tibetan, were written many centuries after his life and incorporate much lively but historically unreliable material which sometimes reaches mythic proportions. However, from the sketches of historical detail and…

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Arguments For and Against

 The Dalai Lama has said that: Shugden is a worldly spirit. Shugden practice has the potential to promote sectarianism. Shugden practice harms the health of the Dalai Lama and is contrary to the interests of Tibet and the Tibetan people. The Nechung State Oracle (bound by Padmasambhava) stated that it is harmful. Tibetan people using…

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Dorje Shugden Movie Project

Dorje Shugden: On The Trail Of A Buddhist Protector is a documentary film project. The general idea is to do documented research on the origin and practice of the Buddhist protector deity Dorje Shugden. It is important to show the practice as integrated part of a living Buddhist tradition without going into the recent controversy….

Contemplate This

.…Instead of turning away people who practise Dorje Shugden, we should be kind to them. Give them logic and wisdom without fear, then in time they give up the ‘wrong’ practice. Actually Shugden practitioners are not doing anything wrong. But hypothetically, if they are, wouldn’t it be more Buddhistic to be accepting? So those who have views against Dorje Shugden should contemplate this. Those practicing Dorje Shugden should forbear with extreme patience, fortitude and keep your commitments. The time will come as predicted that Dorje Shugden’s practice and it’s terrific quick benefits will be embraced by the world and it will be a practice of many beings.

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