Dalai Lama: Whatever “fierce spirit” you choose is up to you

In this latest talk by Dalai Lama, he mentioned that “whatever fierce spirit you choose is up to you”, therefore that includes Nechung (a type of Pehar spirit, see below description from Wikipedia), but why is it that it is OK for the Tibetan Government-in-exile (now downgraded to Central Tibetan Administration, CTA) to pray to Nechung and seek his advice via the “state oracle” from time to time, but Dorje Shugden has to be outcasted? By the way, while Nechung is a proven spirit, Dorje Shugden on the other hand is an emanation of a Bodhisattva, He is not even close to being a “spirit”. ~ Namdrol

Read about Dalai Lama and CTA’s dealings with the Nechung spirit all this while: http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/features/the-wheel-of-protection/

Wikipedia: Pehar is a spirit belonging to the gyalpo class. When Padmasambhava arrived in Tibet in the eighth century, he subdued all gyalpo spirits and put them under control of Gyalpo Pehar, who promised not to harm any sentient beings and was made the chief guardian spirit of the Samye Temple built at that time. Some Tibetans believe that the protector of Samye sometimes enters the body of a medium (called the “Dharma Lord of Samye”) and acts as an oracle.



His Holiness: Accept Buddha’s Teachings ‘’Only After Proper Analysis’’

Friday, 17 August 2012 15:15
MarkKernan, TibetPost International

Dharamshala: His Holiness the Dalai Lama has returned to Dharamshala from Ladakh after giving a teaching to local Buddhists on the fundamental precepts and philosophical underpinnings of all the schools of Tibetan Buddhism. He said: the four traditional schools of Buddhism in Tibet may superficially seem to differ in the way they explain the [Buddhist] view, but ultimately what they refer to is the same [thing]”.

The Tibetan spiritual leader spent four days in Ladakh, a region in Northern India sometime called ‘little Tibet’ due to its strong linguistic, cultural and religious ties with Tibet, and, as he has does many times in the past, His Holiness stressed the importance of the authenticity of Buddhist teachings, and being true to the historical Buddha’s words.

He stressed, ‘’ In fact the Buddha counseled his followers to examine what he taught and to adopt it only if they felt it was worthwhile, not simply out of respect for him”.

On the second day of the teachings His Holiness talked of Dolgyal (or Shugden). He said that he stopped propitiating the spirit many years ago after extensive investigations had revealed it was improper to do so.

His Holiness encapsulated his thinking on the subject of Dolgyal by saying, “anyone who has kept up the practice of Dolgyal out of ignorance should not have any fear about giving it up if they heed his advice.

On the other hand, he said, whatever fierce spirit you choose is up to you, all His Holiness asks is that such persons do not take vows or empowerments from him.”

Turning to other themes, he reiterated his long standing conviction that Buddhism must not just rely on tradition and handed down conventions based on out dated thinking. For example, in reply to some Korean Buddhists a few years His Holiness said, “that he didn’t think the Buddha appeared in the world to give cosmic measurements, but to show the way to liberation from cyclic existence”.

Moreover, the pertinent point he made was that if you take refuge in the three Jewels of Buddhism-The Buddha, Sangha and Dharma- it is because you have consciously tried to ‘’overcome all faults and [ripen] all qualities”.

Cultivating Compassion

On the third day, in order to cultivate compassion, and altruism, His Holiness said that an altruistic attitude-to all living beings-is essential if we wish to achieve Buddhahood. His Holiness went through important Buddhist initiations with the congregation for instance the ‘rite to aspire to develop Boddhichitta’. Boddhichitta: meaning the awakened mind that strives for compassion and solidarity with all humans and all other sentient beings.

On the fourth and final day His Holiness the Dalai Lama gave the long life empowerment associated with White Tara (a female deity in Tibetan Buddhism), and symbolically, she is regarded as the feminine aspect of Avalokitesvara.

Amongst other things, His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama went onto discuss the importance of religious tolerance in all parts of the world-not least within the different Tibetan Buddhist traditions and his hope that current tolerance would prevail everywhere.

Finally, His Holiness thanked the congregation and the organizers for making his visit a successful one. His Holiness then conferred the long life empowerment of White Tara and subsequent prayers were conducted in relation to White Tara for his long life. At one point in proceedings, after the sun had come out, he stopped to remark:

“The 13th Dalai Lama was once giving a teaching at Norbulingka on a very hot day and there are reports that you could tell who had attended them by their sunburnt faces. It looks like it’ll be the same today.”


source: http://www.thetibetpost.com/en/news/international/2783-his-holiness-accept-buddhas-teachings-only-after-proper-analysis


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  1. I must say based on this article, HHDL’s tone against seems to have mellowed to many years ago when he was fierce against the practice of Dorje Shugden. Now it appears it is “a choice” and that he only “asks” that we do not take empowerment…

    “whatever fierce spirit you choose is up to you, all His Holiness asks is that such persons do not take vows or empowerments from him.”

    Then 3 days of teachings with no mention of “Dolgyal” again… I do not know about how others feel, but I think HHDL is loosening his grip…

  2. Thanks again for the posting.

    Above articles HHDL had mentioned ‘a choice’ and ‘whatever fierce spirit you choose is up to you’. HHDL said very clearly, those practitioners can have their choose ‘ to worship spirit ‘ What is means?

    HHDL is very skillful….indirectly saying that, we can practice Dorje Shugden!


  3. Okay well some people might argue Dorje Shugden IS a spirit, so Namdrols statements kindda irrelevant. But even then…even if Dorje Shugden were a spirit, which he isnt, why is it okay to pray to Nechung but not to him?

    Unfortunately when His Holiness says they are free to choose, their not entirely free because they arent free from fear over what consequences theyll suffer for their choices.

    Having said that, maybe we persecuted people in our previous lives and now the karmas coming back to us…anyone ever thought about that??

  4. It certainly is strange to see HHDL speaking of DS in this way after his aggressiveness towards DS practice that was seen many years back. It does seem that HHDL has tone down the ban towards DS practitioners to merely ‘not attending his teachings’. It is safe to say that the situation right now is almost democratic.

    However, the situation in the real world, DS practitioners are still ostracised. The long years of intensive and hard hold on banning DS practitioners has become almost second nature to all followers of HHDL that they can’t seem to see reason any more.

    Merely not mentioning much about ‘dolgyal’ is not enough to change the situation. There must be an official statement that DS is Manjushri and he is an enlightened being from HHDL himself! If such statement is not said then there will always be unrest within the Buddhist world due to DS practice.

  5. Thank you Dalai Lama! I shall continue my Dorje Shugden practice and not attend any of your empowerments…not because I don’t respect you. But rather doing so out of respect for you.

    So many high lamas who practiced Dorje Shugden have reincarnated. So were they wrong to practice Shugden? If yes, why are they back? Are you saying that old lamas who practiced Shugden are fine but we the new generation who do so will go to hell?

    Doesn’t make sense to me. So many evidences to prove Dorje Shugden is a Buddha..why are people still being so ignorant?!

  6. Ironic how immediately after reiterating the ban on Dorje Shugden, Dalai Lama follows up with a message on compassion. Is that a hint to his followers to be nice? To stop discriminating against us? When I read Dalai Lama’s message, tbh I don’t see anything wrong? I’m not keeping up the practice out of ignorance, I’m keeping it up out of logic. And if I do want to keep up my practice and follow my Lama’s advice, I don’t really need to follow Dalai Lama’s instructions do I? According to Vajrayana, my own teacher’s instructions are enough.

  7. Ya you all worship Dolgyal you are spirit worship la. Dalai Lama is Chenrezig and he say Dolgyal is spirit, you better listen la. OM MANI PEME HUM

  8. This annoys me. The dalai lama keeps changing his mind. First it is not okay to practice, and now it is okay. Actually, we all know that even if he says “it is up to you”, it is not really the case for the Tibetans. I have many friends in the Tibetan community who continue to be ostracised and put down because of their continued practice of Shugden. So it seems like it’s a choice, but it isn’t really. You don’t just make a religious choice, but inevitably, choosing Dorje Shugden means that you also choose exile within the community. How is this democratic or fair and where is the compassion that the dalai lama talks so eloquently about? It’s all nonsense and he just rambles.

  9. Fierce Spirits in Tibetan Buddhism is like Green Tara who is the incarnation of Goddess of Mercy in the ghost realm to liberate ghost beings as a skilful means. It denotes a compassionate heart within all regardless of external representations. What Dalai Lama meant is the teachings of all traditions in Tibetan that applies skilful way of different ‘Fierce Spirits or faces” to reflect its compassion and peace.

  10. He is a great person.. i have seen him during his visit in Delhi, the capital of India..

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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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