Author Topic: EXPLOSIVE ARTICLE! The Karmapas and the Forbidden Buddha  (Read 12552 times)

DharmaDefender

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EXPLOSIVE ARTICLE! The Karmapas and the Forbidden Buddha
« on: January 18, 2013, 12:02:37 PM »
I was just reading this article on DS.com which I think has the potential to be hugely explosive. Why is it that EVERYTHING the Tibetan government gets their hands on, has to be politicised and turns into absolute rot? Its sad because I dont recall them ever being like this in Tibet. Maybe exposure to the greater samsara (like the frog that finally left the well) was really the end of them. Because since 1959, they havent been acting very Buddhist, have they?

From http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/the-controversy/the-karmapas-and-the-forbidden-buddha/

The Karmapas and the Forbidden Buddha


The Sharmapa (left) with Karmapa Thaye Dorje (right) at the annual Kagyu Monlam festival in Bodhgaya

One of the most contested issues within Tibetan Buddhism is that of the recognition of the 17th Karmapa, the spiritual head of the Karma Kagyus sect. This has been a central dividing factor within the Karma Kagyus, which has since split into two divisions – each following one of the two Karmapas.

First, a bit of history: traditionally, it is widely acknowledged that the incarnations of the Karmapas can be recognized by any of the four regents of the Karma Kagyus. For hundreds of years, it has been the Shamarpa who has recognized the Karmapa most often. This tradition has been followed for centuries within the Karma Kagyu school of Buddhism, undisturbed by any other spiritual authority or group. The 17th Karmapa incarnation named Trinley Thaye Dorje was recognized in this way, by Shamar Rinpoche (also known as the Shamarpa) in 1994.

However, another regent within the Karma Kagyu lineage, Tai Situ Rinpoche (also known as Tai Situpa) had recognized another boy as the ‘official’ 17th Karmapa in 1992: Urgyen Trinley Dorje. Tai Situpa then sought ‘acknowledgement’ and ‘approval’ from the Dalai Lama for this recognition, which the Dalai Lama granted. Although the Dalai Lama has no real jurisdiction over the Karma Kagyu school, he involved himself in the affairs of their lineage and tulkus. By doing so, he overrode a long-established system of recognitions by the four regents within the Karma Kagyu lineage. The Dalai Lama actually has no right to do this, as he is not even of the Kagyu sect nor holds any official position of authority within this school. Traditionally, it has been the Shamarpa (or, in his absence, one of the other regents) who has recognized and announced the incarnations. This recognition by Tai Situpa, compounded by the acknowledgement from the Dalai Lama, was completely contrary to tradition.


Tai Situ Rinpoche (left) with Karmapa Urgyen Trinley (right)

This was noted by the Shamarpa himself, when he wrote in a letter to famous author and Dalai Lama supporter, Robert Thurman, that “No Shamarpa has had to ask for approval or provide proof to the Dalai Lamas or to the Tibetan government.” (Links to background information about both Karmapas and the writings about the Karmapa controversy can be found below).

A feud broke out within the Karma Kagyu lineage, particularly between the two regents Shamarpa Rinpoche and Tai Situ Rinpoche, which has continued to this day. The Karma Kagyu split into two factions and Rumtek Monastery, the traditional seat of the Karmapas, became a hotly contested space. Some media reports claim that the Shamarpa had tried to oust the Dalai-Lama-backed Tai Situpa and his people from Rumtek; other reports claim that it was the other way around, that Tai Situpa had attacked the Shamarpa and his people while they were in Rumtek. Whoever it was however, it is certain that the monastery definitely came under physical attack by both lay practitioners and even monks. (Video also available on our server here)

Rumtek Monastery Attacked Small | Large


Eventually, this feuding culminated in the Indian authorities banning Tai Situpa from entering India on the counts of anti-India activities. It has been speculated that the Shamarpa was behind this, having many close connections with the Indian police. Even when he was allowed back in, there are restrictions as where he was allowed to travel within India. There continues to be two Karmapas today, with two distinctly different groups of followers.


Karmapa Urgyen Trinley (right) has long enjoyed a close relationship with the Dalai Lama


Karmapa Thaye Dorje however has never been recognized by the Dalai Lama nor associated with in an official capacity


The Chosen Ones
Following his ‘recognition’ and up until this day, the Dalai Lama continues to promote Karmapa Urgyen Trinley, invites him to official events, pujas and rituals, and speaks about him publicly. He never extends the same acknowledgment, invitations or promotion to Karmapa Thaye Dorje. As the Dalai Lama and the CTA never meet or associate publicly with Thaye Dorje, they are effectively stating that they do not respect nor acknowledge the recognition made by the Shamarpa and the Karma Kagyu school. This is a clear and silent message to the Shamarpa and the Karma Kagyu tradition that they must come under the rule, law and edicts of the Dalai Lama and his secular government. It is saying that they must abide by the Dalai Lama’s decision, even if there is no tradition to support this in the history of the Karma Kagyu school and practices.

Above all, it undermines the basic tenet of freedom of religion, which should be granted equally to all citizens. The explicit support of one Karmapa and the clear exclusion of another is evidence enough that the religious choices of individuals are not equally respected – one automatically ‘falls out of favor’ with the Dalai Lama and his people if they don’t choose to follow the ‘right’ Karmapa.


Many have samaya with the Dalai Lama, especially if they have received tantric initiations from him, such as the Kalachakra

It can thus be also inferred that followers of Karmapa Thaye Dorje have broken their samaya (spiritual relationship) with the Dalai Lama. Many Karma Kagyu followers have received the Kalachakra tantric initiation (and the corresponding vows) from the Dalai Lama, and would therefore consider him one of their teachers. However, by following Karmapa Thaye Dorje, who has NOT been recognized by the Dalai Lama, are they not going against his instructions and directives? And by doing so, are they not therefore breaking their samaya with him? How can they then continue to attend and receive teachings from the Dalai Lama when they have broken the fundamental basis of their student-teacher relationship with him?


The Shunned Ones
There is another similar situation occurring now in the Tibetan Buddhist world: The Dalai Lama no longer recognizes the practice of the Protector Deity Dorje Shugden as a valid practice. He has issued a ban against this Protector, stating that anyone who continues to worship Dorje Shugden is going against his instruction and therefore breaking samaya with him. The Dalai Lama and his government in exile, the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA) have claimed that to pray to Dorje Shugden is to go against the Dalai Lama and would thus break samaya with the Dalai Lama. This infers that the broken samaya could lead to shortening the Dalai Lama’s life.

Dorje Shugden practitioners are not permitted to attend any event, rituals or teachings by the Dalai Lama; they are not allowed to meet with nor speak to the Dalai Lama. All Tibetans are discouraged from associating with Dorje Shugden practitioners in any way. Dorje Shugden devotees are denied basic welfare, civil rights and protection from the government. Because of this ban, monks have been expelled from their monasteries because they did not wish to give up the practice. Monasteries have split into two factions because of the pressures being put on the monks to give up what has been a lifelong religious practice for most of them. Both the Dalai Lama and the CTA even have information on their official websites denouncing the practice of Dorje Shugden and actively, openly discouraging anyone from associating with this practice. See clear evidence of this material on the Dalai Lama’s website and the CTA’s website.


The Dalai Lama meets with Buddhists of all faiths, from all over the world… except Dorje Shugden practitioners

Our question is this: it would seem that both Dorje Shugden practitioners and followers of Thaye Dorje are not following the directives of the Dalai Lama. In both cases, these practitioners have broken their samaya with the Dalai Lama and therefore, karmically pose a potential threat to the Dalai Lama’s life and their personal spiritual development. So why is it that there are such severe repercussions for Dorje Shugden practitioners but hardly anything is said about the Karma Kagyu followers of Thaye Dorje? Why are Dorje Shugden practitioners banned from attending the Dalai Lama’s teachings or associating with other Tibetans but Karmapa Thaye Dorje’s followers are not? It appears that there are different standards for the two groups when they have both equally broken samaya – why is this so? Why does the CTA discriminate against Dorje Shugden practitioners but not against the ‘other’ Karmapa group?


Speaking Out
It must also be noted that arising out of this Karmapa controversy was the Shamarpa’s very outspoken comments to the Dalai Lama and his supporters, such as renowned Buddhist writer Robert Thurman. In a series of letters and written statements, the Shamarpa made very overt comments about the inappropriate interferences by the Dalai Lama and his government in internal Karma Kagyu affairs. He directly questioned the spiritual authority of the Dalai Lama, pointed out the incorrectness and hypocrisy of the Dalai Lama’s actions in this affair and made clear his disapproval of their intrusion. Other supporters of Trinley Thaye Dorje also wrote a very firm and strongly-worded petition letter to the Dalai Lama expressing their stand in the matter.

So on the one hand, Dorje Shugden practitioners are accused of betraying the Dalai Lama and being traitors to the cause for Tibet’s freedom – even though most of them engage in their spiritual practice quietly, peacefully and without becoming involved in any political affairs of the state. On the other, the Shamarpa and his followers are speaking out so openly and aggressively against the Dalai Lama’s actions and making it very clear that they do not support the Dalai Lama’s decisions. However, while Shugden devotees are continuously harassed for their practice, denied their basic civil rights and excluded from the community, both the Dalai Lama and the CTA have not responded in any way to counter the Shamarpa’s verbal and written attacks, nor imposed any repercussions against their outspoken reactions.


Violence
Further, we must remember the physical attacks on Rumtek Monastery (the Karmapa’s official seat) and the subsequent unrest and instability it caused in the area. To this day there are conflicting reports as to whether it was the Shamarpa who incited the attacks, or Tai Situpa which in itself reflects the highly volatile state of affairs caused by this issue. However, despite the obvious violence, the Dalai Lama and the CTA remained silent about the attacks.

In contrast, the Tibetan government and laypeople repeatedly accuse Dorje Shugden practitioners of violence, even maintaining claims that Shugden worshippers were responsible for murders in the late 1990s. These claims were never really substantiated or proven beyond doubt, but the stigma that Dorje Shugden people are violent and harmful are consistently perpetuated. Again, why are there different reactions to what is essentially the same issue of violence and supposed opposition?

We could maybe assume that the Dalai Lama has refrained from saying anything about the conflicts or violence that arose out of the Karmapa controversy because to do so would be seen as sectarian. The Dalai Lama himself is schooled in the Gelugpa lineage and would therefore not have any right to critique or comment on the practices of the Kagyus or any other school. But if this was really the case, then in the first place the Dalai Lama should not have stepped foot at all into Kagyu affairs by ‘approving’ one Karmapa over the other. He should have stayed out of what is traditionally an issue handled only by the lamas of the Karma Kagyu sect.

We might also say that it is just a simple case of bias for one Karmapa and prejudice against another (whatever the reasons may be). Then the same must necessarily be said of the Dorje Shugden issue – the Dalai Lama and his government must therefore assume responsibility for being biased and prejudiced against Dorje Shugden practitioners and be open to dialogue about it. They must be able to explain, first and foremost, why any government which claims to be democratic, would have any such bias against any of their own people.


Why the Difference?
This division among the Karma Kagyus has been a significant and largely troubled part of the contemporary Tibetan Buddhist history for more than 15 years. It has caused great rifts throughout the Tibetan Buddhist community worldwide and the Karma Kagyu sect continues to function as two instead of as a unified whole. For an issue as significant as this, the Dalai Lama’s government remains unusually quiet, choosing not to act or comment against the group that is supposedly ‘against’ the Dalai Lama’s chosen Karmapa. However, they apparently have a free hand to create tremendous conflict between Dorje Shugden practitioners and the rest of the Tibetan community, and very obviously hurt this sector of their exiled community.

We ask again – why is there such a difference in the way people of the same community are treated, based purely on their religious choices? Why does the CTA practice such explicit discrimination and prejudice against one group, but not another?

For the record, we do not have any bias for or against either of the Karmapas; nor do we wish to take sides or comment on the internal affairs of the Karma Kagyus. However, we wish to highlight the very apparent inconsistencies in policy as practiced by the Dalai Lama and the CTA. We urge the Dalai Lama and the CTA to urgently re-examine their policies and we hope that they will see and acknowledge the obvious differences in the way they treat their own people.

From there, we hope they will change their policies to truly embrace all the people of their community. Lift the ban on Dorje Shugden practitioners so the CTA can be proud that they were finally able to do something wonderfully constructive for Tibetans – by granting all Tibetans the democratic right to religious freedom.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2013, 12:03:18 PM by Admin »

beggar

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Re: EXPLOSIVE ARTICLE! The Karmapas and the Forbidden Buddha
« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2013, 03:53:27 PM »
Hey Defender, that's a powerful article, some might even saying completely daring. But actually, the issue is a simple one and the logic is astounding. WHY INDEED are there different standards for different groups over the same fundamental issues? Why indeed are there so many contradictions in the actions of the CTA? Is this the kind of "democracy" that a government upholds for its people?

Then another thought occurred to me. Is it really the fault of the CTA? Do they really have much say in such affairs? Do they really have the option to speak out against the spiritual directives of the Dalai Lama, a figurehead that has been king and master of Tibetans for centuries? This is not to desecrate or be disrespectful towards the Dalai Lama, but merely a question of how much this government is to blame for all these controversies and conflicting positions they hold towards their own people. Perhaps they don't have a choice. Speaking out and offering another fairer way of responding to such situations would necessarily mean that they are going against the words of the Dalai Lama, which is akin to being a traitor - for how can the words of Chenrezig, as they believe him to be, be wrong or mistaken?

See this video for example, extracted from a France 24 report:
www.youtube.com/watch?v=7p6WzpTU68o&feature=player_embedded#at=36 Small | Large


(and read the full story of this here: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/news/tibets-freedom-is-near/)

It's very clear here how reluctant the Tibetan secular leaders are to speak about spiritual matters (in this case, about Nechung's predictions). We might even guess that they don't really agree with the way in which such secular and political matters concerning Tibet's relations with China are deferred to spiritual oracles and predictions. So they evade the questions, directing the interviewee to the monks and Geshe-las instead.

Perhaps then, the CTA / parliament and secular leaders really DON'T have a say in all this. Considering this then, does the basic right of religious freedom hinge solely on the Dalai Lama? It looks to be that way. Do we have even less hope now in equality for practitioners, and real religious freedom? Thoughts?

vajratruth

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Re: EXPLOSIVE ARTICLE! The Karmapas and the Forbidden Buddha
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2013, 04:19:35 AM »
Hey Defender, that's a powerful article, some might even saying completely daring. But actually, the issue is a simple one and the logic is astounding. WHY INDEED are there different standards for different groups over the same fundamental issues? Why indeed are there so many contradictions in the actions of the CTA? Is this the kind of "democracy" that a government upholds for its people?

Then another thought occurred to me. Is it really the fault of the CTA? Do they really have much say in such affairs? Do they really have the option to speak out against the spiritual directives of the Dalai Lama, a figurehead that has been king and master of Tibetans for centuries? This is not to desecrate or be disrespectful towards the Dalai Lama, but merely a question of how much this government is to blame for all these controversies and conflicting positions they hold towards their own people. Perhaps they don't have a choice. Speaking out and offering another fairer way of responding to such situations would necessarily mean that they are going against the words of the Dalai Lama, which is akin to being a traitor - for how can the words of Chenrezig, as they believe him to be, be wrong or mistaken?


On the one hand, the CTA is genuinely caught in a dilemma but on the other hand, they are not taking up their responsibilities as a democratic government and “loyalty” to the Dalai Lama is a convenient way out of having to make tough decisions. I think it is  bit of both because spirituality is deeply woven into the Tibetan society and especially for the older generation, obeying the Dalai Lama is part of their spiritual practice.

The Tibetan government in exile still behaves like it is merely the administrator of a theocracy and it is therefore dishonest to portray themselves as a true democracy (which the Dalai Lama declared the Tibetan community to be in 1960)and even more so to demand from China the kind of freedom that a democracy accords.

In both the Dorje Shugden and 17th Karmapa case, there was entirely no need for the CTA to be involved if those two issues were truly spiritual in nature, and yet the CTA become so entrenched in both. It endorsed the Dalai Lama’s choice of Ogyen Trinley as the 17th Karmapa and it became the enforcer for the Dorje Shugden ban instead of upholding freedom of religion as it should, under its own constitution. If the CTA has no respect for the constitution, why have one to begin and why pretend to be a democracy?

All these contradictions harm the credibility of the CTA and they have been shown not only to be hypocritical but also weak on where they stand in terms of issues like liberty and the people’s rights. A real democratic government would not have taken sides but should instead, make all attempts to arbitrate between conflicting parties in order to preserve harmony in the community. By taking sides, both the CTA and the Dalai Lama is saying that the other side is wrong and therefore their activities should be deemed unlawful. That is the message I am getting – if the practice of Dorje Shugden is wrong, then it must also be wrong to be on the Karmapa Thaye Dorje’s side in the Karmapa issue. such dangerous developments under the watch of the CTA.

beggar

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Re: EXPLOSIVE ARTICLE! The Karmapas and the Forbidden Buddha
« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2013, 11:16:58 AM »
So here's a question (if we're going to play the devil's advocate)... and I would be most interested to know this if anyone has closer information from within the Tibetan communities and familiar with the internal politics.

Let's say the CTA really DOES stand up to the Dalai Lama, puts their foot down and says "This ban is nonsense and we won't stand for this for the Tibetan people that we're trying to protect and fight for. Today, we declare that there is no ban. Everyone is free to practice as they wish. Government officers will get their jobs back, Dorje Shugden practitioners may resume all activity, join schools, be eligible for medical aid and welfare, shop anywhere they like and associate with anyone they want."

What would the consequences be? On a secular level, there's absolutely nothing wrong with this. But what else might the Dalai Lama - their spiritual leader and, perhaps in some cases, also their Gurus - have to say about that? To what extent has the Dalai Lama really separated from the political sphere? And is it enough to freely allow the CTA to make a decision like this?

I'd be interested to know what the repercussions would be for the CTA if they really did this and how that would mar (if at all) their relationship with the Dalai Lama - a "king" to them for so many hundreds of years.


samayakeeper

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Re: EXPLOSIVE ARTICLE! The Karmapas and the Forbidden Buddha
« Reply #4 on: January 20, 2013, 03:19:47 AM »
Good research, facts and opinions, thank you.

Yes, indeed it is double standard for the Dalai Lama in allowing practitioners who follow Karmapa Thaye Dorje to attend his teachings while banning Dorje Shugden practitioners. For those DS practitioners who are not allowed, it would not be so important because they would have their own root lama to teach and guide them. But to deprive these same people of their basic human rights is not.

Why is it that DS practitioners are breaking their samaya but the words and actions of the Dalai Lama are okay since Dalai Lama broke samaya with his own gurus? And the people in CTA are just puppets who have no brain and gall to think and act.

Ensapa

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Re: EXPLOSIVE ARTICLE! The Karmapas and the Forbidden Buddha
« Reply #5 on: January 20, 2013, 04:15:00 AM »
Here's a little more detail on the karmapa issue in case anyone else missed out:

when the sharmapa was banned, the task of the sharmapa was passed down to one of the regents and this regent was none other than tai situpa. The banning effectively caused a shift in power balance and for as long as the sharmapa's absence, the tai situpa took charge of everything. Fast forward to the 16th Karmapa, he has approached the Dalai Lama to unban the sharmapa, and then recognized the current sharmapa. He then brought up the sharmapa together with tai situpa...they were essentially playmates and now this happened. The power balance once again shifted and tai situpa had to get the Dalai Lama for leverage....


WisdomBeing

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Re: EXPLOSIVE ARTICLE! The Karmapas and the Forbidden Buddha
« Reply #6 on: January 21, 2013, 07:07:29 PM »
How topical. This was in the news today, and i would like to draw attention to the statement that "State officials say they believe that the national government thinks the Karmapa is a spy."

This is the karma of the CTA, that the 17th Karmapa backed by the Dalai Lama is accused of being a Chinese spy!! I do think that the karma of always blaming Dorje Shugden practitioners and lamas as Chinese spies without any grounds has now returned to the CTA. So CTA, what are you going to do to clear this karma? Perhaps by the Four Opponent Powers of Regret (for banning Dorje Shugden), Refuge (take refuge in Dorje Shugden), Remedial action (lift the ban) and Resolve (never ban Dorje Shugden again!)



January 21, 2013, 7:18 am
In Rumtek, a Generation of Buddhist Monks Loses Hope
By ANJANI TRIVEDI
http://india.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/01/21/in-rumtek-a-generation-of-buddhist-monks-loses-hope/

RUMTEK, Sikkim —In their 13th year of waiting for their spiritual leader, the Tibetan Buddhist monks at a mountainside monastery in Sikkim are starting to give up hope.

“Our hearts have fallen — the master isn’t coming,” said Karma Yeshi, a monk and teacher at the Rumtek monastery, home to 150 monks in the Himalayas in the erstwhile kingdom annexed to India in 1975. “It’s like a house without a father.”

The person the monks are eager to see is Ogyen Trinley Dorje, the 27-year-old man deemed to be the leader of the Kagyu order of Buddhism, one of the four main schools in Tibetan Buddhism.

Tibetan Buddhism stresses the importance of meeting the Karmapa. Teachings in the Kagyu order are passed on from master to student, and the Kagyu’s Web site says that “all great Kagyu teachers regard his Holiness Karmapa as the embodiment and source of all the blessings of the lineage.”

The young man known as the 17th Karmapa is currently based in Dharamsala at the Gyuto Tantric University, having been granted official refugee status in 2001 after fleeing from Tibet in late December 1999. But since 2000, the Indian government has blocked the Karmapa from entering Rumtek and the state of Sikkim, citing security concerns.

To travel outside Dharamsala, the Karmapa needs prior approval from various government agencies and ministries, and he is given security once he does begin his travels, said a Home Ministry official, who asked to remain anonymous because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

Rumtek is the most important seat of the Kagyu tradition outside the Tsurphu monastery in Tibet. Rumtek has also been the site of much controversy, as different factions have fought over who is the real Karmapa, or incarnate lama. At least two others have laid a claim to the title, but the Dalai Lama and China have officially backed Ogyen Trinley Dorje. The monastery’s valuable relics have also been the source of contention among two rival factions, leading to fistfights.

The gated monastery and community in Rumtek is more of an armed garrison, with India’s border forces patrolling it 24 hours a day, seven days a week. While some say the Indo-Tibetan Border Police Force, which also maintains vigil on the nearby India-China border, is guarding the treasure and symbols of authority at the monastery, others say the forces were placed there after clashes among the monks.

“This has lowered the morale among the monks and Buddhist community at large,” Karma Yeshi said.

The government has two concerns about letting the Karmapa travel: his security and the legal battle over ownership of the relics, according the official in the Home Ministry.

State officials say they believe that the national government thinks the Karmapa is a spy. “There is a strong feeling that he might be an agent of China,” said a state government official, who did not want to be identified because he is not authorized to speak publicly on the issue. “It’s very difficult to escape from China, as far as Tibetans are concerned.”

However, China, which does not recognize Sikkim as a part of India, has dismissed these claims by the Indian government.

In 2011, the Karmapa came under scrutiny by Indian police officials after trunks filled with foreign currency were discovered at his residence in Dharamsala, drawing even more suspicion from the government. The Karmapa’s lawyer said the money was donations from devotees from all over the world.

The Karmapa’s presence is a “very, very sensitive” issue that involves multiple ministries, including External Affairs, said the Home Ministry official, although he denied it had anything to do with security.

However, the official said, “He’s been living here, so it’s our duty to protect him. Rumtek being a controversial matter, it’s not in his interest to go there because there are other claimants. So it’s as simple as that.”

“The government of India has adopted a policy of refraining from any succession controversy. We are not favoring or supporting anyone. This policy has been consistent – it was the case 10 years ago and it is still the same,” he added.

Sikkim’s state government backs the Kagyu monks. Sikkim’s chief minister, Pawan Chamling, who has governed for 18 years, has appealed to Manmohan Singh, the prime minister of India, many times to allow the Karmapa to visit the state.

“The chief minister had taken up this matter when he last visited Delhi,” the state government official told India Ink. “At least, if you don’t allow him to visit Rumtek, his official seat, let him visit Sikkim and bless the people of Sikkim, who are great followers. Even that is not being done by the government of India.”

However, the Home Ministry doesn’t want to take a risk with his security, according to officials in the ministry, which deals largely with internal security matters. Ultimately, they say, the responsibility for his safety rests with the central government, and not the Sikkim government.

Karma Yeshi of the Rumtek monastery said that this issue is not just a local matter, as India is a place of pilgrimage for all Buddhists, masters and monks alike, as the birthplace of Buddhism.

“This is very important not only for the Karmapa issue but for Buddhism. The Buddha dharma is from India, from India it went to China, from China to Tibet – this is how the lineage came about,” the senior monk said.

The inability to meet the Karmapa is nothing less than a tragedy for these Tibetan Buddhists.

“We have been waiting for long enough now,” said Monay Rai, a 24-year-old guide at the monastery, who was born and raised inside the gates of the Rumtek community. “Sometimes when V.I.P.’s visit, the aged people tell me, ‘Please tell the V.I.P.’s to help us, to allow our guru. I can’t travel. It is my dream before I die to see the Karmapa here.’”
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Ensapa

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Re: EXPLOSIVE ARTICLE! The Karmapas and the Forbidden Buddha
« Reply #7 on: January 22, 2013, 04:12:36 AM »
I doubt that the CTA would be repentant as they would keep thinking that what they did is right as long as they follow the Dalai Lama (even when they make their own interpretation of what the Dalai Lama means and says to eagerly please the Dalai Lama even if it means doing the most un-buddhistic things ever) I mean, destroying the homes of Dorje Shugden practitioners, accusing Tibetan refugees that are Shugden practitioners who escape all the way from Tibet as Chinese spies just to get them into trouble (they left everything else back in Tibet just to go to Dharamsala, and they get oppressed by no less, their own people. If that is not sheer cruelty, I dont know what is).

The ban has only brought out the worse of the CTA and it goes to show how horrible they can be, and how even more so they should not govern Tibet as if they do, many more people would suffer.

DharmaDefender

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Re: EXPLOSIVE ARTICLE! The Karmapas and the Forbidden Buddha
« Reply #8 on: January 24, 2013, 04:19:57 AM »
Hey Defender, that's a powerful article, some might even saying completely daring. But actually, the issue is a simple one and the logic is astounding. WHY INDEED are there different standards for different groups over the same fundamental issues? Why indeed are there so many contradictions in the actions of the CTA? Is this the kind of "democracy" that a government upholds for its people?

Hahaha well I didnt write it so dont thank me! Just a willing messenger...

I think the CTA have an interesting interpretation of democracy. You know, democracy for you, nto democracy for you. Democracy for you, not democracy for you!

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Then another thought occurred to me. Is it really the fault of the CTA? Do they really have much say in such affairs? Do they really have the option to speak out against the spiritual directives of the Dalai Lama, a figurehead that has been king and master of Tibetans for centuries? This is not to desecrate or be disrespectful towards the Dalai Lama, but merely a question of how much this government is to blame for all these controversies and conflicting positions they hold towards their own people. Perhaps they don't have a choice. Speaking out and offering another fairer way of responding to such situations would necessarily mean that they are going against the words of the Dalai Lama, which is akin to being a traitor - for how can the words of Chenrezig, as they believe him to be, be wrong or mistaken?

I do believe they have that much say in affairs, and that they do have an option to speak out. Why not? What is there to lose? Theyve already lost their country...do they not speak out because they are afraid of losing their position, because the rest of the Kanshag pressure the dissenters to stay silent?  But even in the 50 Verses of Guru Devotion it says if you cannot comply with your spiritual teachers instructions, explain in polite words why you cannot do so. Yet you have not heard one single Tibetan government official make a politely worded statement or refutation for why the ban is inconsistent with compassion and the values of a democracy.

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It's very clear here how reluctant the Tibetan secular leaders are to speak about spiritual matters (in this case, about Nechung's predictions). We might even guess that they don't really agree with the way in which such secular and political matters concerning Tibet's relations with China are deferred to spiritual oracles and predictions. So they evade the questions, directing the interviewee to the monks and Geshe-las instead.

Perhaps then, the CTA / parliament and secular leaders really DON'T have a say in all this. Considering this then, does the basic right of religious freedom hinge solely on the Dalai Lama? It looks to be that way. Do we have even less hope now in equality for practitioners, and real religious freedom? Thoughts?

Avoidance seems to be a common Tibetan trait. And if the basic right of religious freedom hinges solely on the Dalai Lama, then the Tibetans really havent achieved democracy through their reliance on one individual (no matter how enlightened he may be) for decisions. It also goes against the established system withint Tibetan Buddhism, that the spiritual head of the lineage makes decisions for the lineage. Given the Dalai Lama is not the head of either the Karma Kagyus, nor the Gelugs, it beats me why hes stepping in to make such important decisions for the practitionres..do you guys know why???

DharmaSpace

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Re: EXPLOSIVE ARTICLE! The Karmapas and the Forbidden Buddha
« Reply #9 on: January 25, 2013, 07:45:06 AM »
The CTA is highly selective in choosing what they want to enforce. The people in the CTA have all their five senses intact they should and can give advice to the Dalai Lama if they think certain policies divide the people. It is even clearer that the Karmapa crisis that it has split the Kagyu and their lamas and monks into two factions and there is disharmony.

CTA definitely have the power, as they have gotten the Tibetan public/masses to hurt, abuse the Geluga monks in Gaden monasteries. The disharmony within the Tibetan community and within the Tibetan Buddhism, is not going to create the causes for Tibetan independence.

So if they are so vehement about Tibetan independence like how they persecute Dorje Shugden practitioners (their rationale is that practicing Dorje Shugden creates obstacles for Tibetan independence) , why aren't they taking new or other measures to resolve the issue about the division due to the Karmapa and Dorje Shugden? As these not only creates massive amounts of disharmony, it is splitting the Tibetan people, splitting hairs, energy of the Tibetan Nation in exile, not to mention the droves of people on the net arguing, writing and fighting over this issue.

CTA do something new and fresh, if you keep on doing the same things and expect different results then it is madness to expect that. 

beggar

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Re: EXPLOSIVE ARTICLE! The Karmapas and the Forbidden Buddha
« Reply #10 on: January 26, 2013, 07:56:00 AM »
interesting perspectives. I'd be interested to know from a Tibetan perspective, or from someone living within that community how "easy" would be to stand up to the "powers that be". Bear in mind that for most Tibetans, this isn't just a matter of crying democracy and making a stand - they have lived hundreds and hundreds of years under the single ruling of the Dalai Lama. Perhaps even if they WANT to make a stand, they don't know how? I'm not trying to defend them, but trying to understand why it is that they haven't done more so far to stand up for the rights of their own people.

Then again, perhaps this is precisely why the Dalai Lama has, for the first time since the 5th Dalai Lama's time publicly announced his step away from the political arena - this could well be a test to see just how the CTA stand up for themselves and start making independent decisions. This is something they will eventually have to do anyway, once the Dalai Lama passes away - how kind the Dalai Lama is to give them this practice run while he is still around in the background. A time for the CTA to still use their training wheels. So far, they're failing miserably, since so much of what they're doing still seems inextricably tied to the policies of the Dalai Lama...

so my question now is - what is it? ONE: Because they're too afraid to make a stand and Tibetan society has been set in such a way that it is culturally and societally very difficult for them to emerge out of that old world system? or TWO: they just don't know how? or THREE: the dalai lama is still very much holding the reins?  thoughts?

beggar

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Re: EXPLOSIVE ARTICLE! The Karmapas and the Forbidden Buddha
« Reply #11 on: January 26, 2013, 07:57:28 AM »
although yes, I do agree with you Dharma Defender, that the interference in internal sect matters like the endorsement of one karmapa over another is totally unnecessary at the level of the Dalai Lama and his government!

Same goes for deciding what practice is "valid" or not - such as in Dorje Shugden's practice for the Gelugs.

I don't think anything really satisfactorily justifies that kind of interference or overriding of the internal school's heads.

Big Uncle

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Re: EXPLOSIVE ARTICLE! The Karmapas and the Forbidden Buddha
« Reply #12 on: January 26, 2013, 09:19:43 AM »
Wow! This article is extremely interesting and controversial. The implications are huge that since the Dalai Lama had chosen to get involved in the selection of the Karmapas and this implication is not just within the Kagyu School but also in his own Gelug school with the long standing issue of the Dorje Shugden ban.

In my opinion, his deliberate decision to ban Dorje Shugden so many years ago till today must be driven by a higher motivation than what was expressed because I can't see how the Dalai Lama is receiving anything positive from this. Some say that the Dalai Lama is seeking to increase his political power by crushing his detractors who are hardline Dorje Shugden practitioners and who are believed to be critical of the Dalai Lama's liberal mixing of Nyingma and Gelug lineages. However, I find this a little far-fetched because I have seen no criticism from any Lama about this issue yet. So, for me this theory does not hold water.

Just like the issue with the Karmapa, all of us know that the Dalai Lama has really nothing to gain from accepting one Karmapa over another. However, I cannot gauge why is this but I do see parallels between the Karmapa issue and the Dorje Shugden issue because of this article. Whatever the motivation of the Dalai Lama's, I believe it will unfold in time. One cannot bury the truth for too long as the truth will always prevail. Just with a little bit of investigation into this matter, one can find the answer especially on the nature of Dorje Shugden. I wish more people would see beyond the controversy and come to meet the true amazing qualities of Dorje Shugden in their spiritual practice.

kris

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Re: EXPLOSIVE ARTICLE! The Karmapas and the Forbidden Buddha
« Reply #13 on: January 26, 2013, 09:37:26 AM »
Buddhism has always been a religion of peace, tolerance and acceptance, and it is indeed very sad to read such news that the Buddhism is having more and more differences, violence and ostracized. It is even more sad to hear that 2 of these cases are directly or indirectly caused by HH Dalai Lama himself.

HH Dalai Lama has many occasions said He wants to promote harmonious between the different sect of Tibetan Buddhism, but from the results, there are more frictions created instead.

I sincerely hope such issues can be resolved quickly and have all the monks and practitioners to focus on the practices instead of all these political issues.

psylotripitaka

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Re: EXPLOSIVE ARTICLE! The Karmapas and the Forbidden Buddha
« Reply #14 on: January 28, 2013, 07:03:36 AM »
Forgive my naiveté everyone, but why can't there be two Karmapas? Is it not possible for a Master who has achieved the 3 bodies of a Buddha to appear in more than one aspect? Most certainly! Wouldn't it be harmonious and give rise to unbelievable benefits and beauty for both sides to have pure view and respect for both? Is Money and reputation and power really worth the damage this conflict has done? So strange.