Author Topic: "What is all the fuss!!?"  (Read 9483 times)

Positive Change

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"What is all the fuss!!?"
« on: July 07, 2012, 09:12:08 AM »
I came across this interesting blog post and thought I would share it here because it relates to me as a practitioner and also the questions I myself ask. There are certain interesting points which I have highlighted. Please feel free to comment and expand on what was written below in order that we may continue to learn and absorb more!

"Why not just ask another Deity or Buddha to protect us?! I have been relying upon this Wisdom Buddha Dorje Shugden for 27 years and have felt every day his beneficial influence in my life. I'll try and give some context here to help the general reader.

According to Mahayana Buddhism there are countless Buddhas, or enlightened beings, because everyone (Buddhist or not) always has the potential to perfect their love, compassion and wisdom. The Wisdom Buddha Dorje Shugden is one Buddha among many. Some people trying to figure it out have asked me, "Why the fuss about this particular Buddha? Why not just give in to the Dalai Lama's wishes to stop the worship of this Buddha? Isn't all Buddhism the same?" This is equivalent to suggesting to a Franciscan that he stop making prayers to St. Francis. What may seem an obscure practice to others, including other Christians, is an essential part of others' faith.

But to understand the context, we can step back a moment to point out that Dorje Shugden practitioners are all Buddhists who rely on Buddha, Dharma (inner realizations of his teachings), and Sangha (the spiritual community). As Buddhists, we are dedicated to improving our inner qualities such as love, compassion and wisdom to find greater peace of mind and capacity to help others, culminating in the highest spiritual goal of enlightenment for the sake of all living beings. Along with that we are striving to overcome the so-called delusions in our mind, such as anger, greed, pride and ignorance, that cause our own and others' suffering. Lofty goals indeed! And that is where Dorje Shugden comes in. We need help if we are going to do this.

According to the Mahayana Buddhism of Tibet and elsewhere, Buddhas can appear in any form they choose -- they have mastered reality, the illusory nature of all phenomena, so they can do as they please! Some enlightened beings appear as teachers (in any tradition), some appear as Dharma Protectors, some appear as ordinary beings. Dorje Shugden is a Dharma Protector manifestation of the Wisdom Buddha Manjushri. He protects the Dharma of love, compassion and especially wisdom in our minds. His relatively wrathful aspect symbolizes his power to help us defeat the inner enemies of the delusions.

This tradition of prayer and worship is not a new thing. It is 400 years old. For 400 years Dorje Shugden practitioners have made peaceful prayers to this Buddha. For example:

“Now is the time to protect the pitiful and protectorless; Now is the time to protect Dharma practitioners as your children.”

This is an unbroken tradition of prayer that has been passed down to us through generations of highly accomplished Buddhist masters up to the present day. The Dalai Lama himself was a recipient of this tradition through his own masters, including the beloved Trijang Rinpoche, who taught him most of the Dharma he knows. Dorje Shugden is a Buddha and so his compassion protects all living beings, but his main job is to protect the realizations (inner spiritual experiences) of those who are sincerely trying to follow the tradition of Buddha Shakyamuni (500BC) as transmitted via the great Indian Buddhist master Atisha (982-1054AD) and the great Tibetan scholar and saint Je Tsongkhapa (1357-1419AD). This is called the Ganden, or Gelug, or Kadampa tradition.

Just as there are many paths up the mountain, so there have always been many Buddhist traditions, all dating back to Buddha Shakyamuni (500BC). Dorje Shugden practitioners are not claiming to have the best tradition, just the one that works best for us.

Big Uncle

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Re: "What is all the fuss!!?"
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2012, 11:39:33 AM »
According to Mahayana Buddhism there are countless Buddhas, or enlightened beings, because everyone (Buddhist or not) always has the potential to perfect their love, compassion and wisdom. The Wisdom Buddha Dorje Shugden is one Buddha among many. Some people trying to figure it out have asked me, "Why the fuss about this particular Buddha? Why not just give in to the Dalai Lama's wishes to stop the worship of this Buddha? Isn't all Buddhism the same?" This is equivalent to suggesting to a Franciscan that he stop making prayers to St. Francis. What may seem an obscure practice to others, including other Christians, is an essential part of others' faith.

Nice and interesting viewpoint. I think the above should be elaborated further. In Mahayana Buddhism like other forms of Buddhism, keeping our words of honor is the foundation practice from which we build our spiritual path. Hence, we have refuge vows and commitments, Bodhisattva vows, Tantric vows and the sublime vows of a fully ordained monk. All of these show that the Buddha emphasized that upholding these sacred commits has a transformative effect upon our mind.

In Tibetan form of Buddhism, the moment we take refuge with a Guru, we have taken refuge with his lineage and practice. Hence, if we have received the practice from him, it is your commitment to practice what your Lama has bestowed upon you. If we have taken refuge with a Guru, we don't pick and choose the advice that was given, the deities we pray to and Protectors that we propitiate. Even when we have 2 or more Lamas, one Lama's instruction cannot overwrite another, even when one is as big as the Dalai Lama. Hence, we have some Lamas and practitioners have chosen to keep their practice a personal and secret affair.

On the other hand, if Dorje Shugden practice may not have been given by any specific Lama. However, we should understand the basis of this protector and why he has become so important over the last hundred years. Out of so many, Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche and Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche has picked this Protector based upon the premise of our time and karmic affinity of the people. Dorje Shugden is supreme in protecting practitioners because of these reasons and at the same time, he is definitely an emanation of Manjushri.

This means that he has tremendous ability and skill to help us to navigate through our obstacles and problems. It is because of this reasons, Dorje Shugden is supreme and more powerful over other Protector deities. All enlightened Buddhas are at the same level but the manifestation of Dorje Shugden is most suited for our time. That's why Kyabje Pabongka Rinpoche and Kyabje Trijang Rinpoche promoted it so much.

hope rainbow

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Re: "What is all the fuss!!?"
« Reply #2 on: July 07, 2012, 01:37:56 PM »
Oh well indeed, why not give up Dorje Shugden and go for another Dharma Protector that is not controversial?
That sounds so easy to an untrained eye...

If I was to do that, I would simply be contradicting my Guru who gave me the practice of Dorje Shugden, and it would be like saying that I know better than my Guru. This also means that my Guru is no more my Guru, for I have simply disqualified Him plain and simple.

The difficulties coming along with practices given by a Guru to His students ARE the practice.
Thus the removal of the ban over Dorje Shugden IS the practice.

DSFriend

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Re: "What is all the fuss!!?"
« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2012, 11:07:14 AM »
The fuss is because as many of you have said, it is a practice given by our lamas and is as sacred as any other practices we have received.

Also, many practitioners have personally benefitted directly from Dorje Shugden on many levels. He is a protector who is so close to us in helping us on our path, a one fully trusted friend for many who have cultivated a close relation with him.

He is not moved by anything except our devotion to our lama, practitioners with good motivation and wishes to practice to be of benefit to others. Doesn't this show his nature!

It is a big fuss to just stop practicing and and stop propitiating Dorje Shugden. It is a big fuss because millions can have receive the seeds of enlightenment  in their mindstreams just by seeing him. Perhaps they will practice in this life,..perhaps in the future lives.

brian

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Re: "What is all the fuss!!?"
« Reply #4 on: July 08, 2012, 11:27:58 AM »
Many people in this world have been benefiting from the kindness of the Protector Lord Dorje Shugden. Many would feel hard to take (especially when Dorje Shugden have been  helping a lot of His practitioners) when the announcement of the ban of the practice was made. So it is only natural there are many who went on to protest the ban partly because of the reasoning behind the ban. Practicising Dorje Shugden can shorten The Dalai Lama's life (???) and Dorje Shugden is a spirit and not an enlightened being. I do not need to talk more about this as there are many other threads that is discussing about this.

beggar

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Re: "What is all the fuss!!?"
« Reply #5 on: July 08, 2012, 12:19:11 PM »

According to the Mahayana Buddhism of Tibet and elsewhere, Buddhas can appear in any form they choose -- they have mastered reality, the illusory nature of all phenomena, so they can do as they please! Some enlightened beings appear as teachers (in any tradition), some appear as Dharma Protectors, some appear as ordinary beings. Dorje Shugden is a Dharma Protector manifestation of the Wisdom Buddha Manjushri. He protects the Dharma of love, compassion and especially wisdom in our minds. His relatively wrathful aspect symbolizes his power to help us defeat the inner enemies of the delusions.


Thanks for this. Good insights and always good to contemplate why we are following any particular practice.

I selected out this particular quote because this stands out: "Some enlightened beings appear as teachers (in any tradition), some appear as Dharma Protectors, some appear as ordinary beings."

It is particularly interesting to note that in the case of Dorje Shugden, he appears as so many beings to us at the same time: as a Lama (in his peaceful aspect of Duldzin and also as emanation of Lama Tsongkhapa), as a Dharma protector, as a mahaiddha in some of his previous incarnations, as a scholar (Panchen Sonam Drakpa) even, in an indirect way, as a yidam (being an emanation of Manjushri). So we can relate to him in many different ways.

In some cases, during trance through an oracle, Dorje Shugden appears in the form of Duldzin and even gives Dharma teachings - so he is not an ordinary Dharma Protector. He is a Lama as well, in whom we can take full refuge and receive teachings from. This is something unusual, which not all protectors (enlightened or not) will do. see this video, below:
The Oracle taking trance of KING DULDZIN at the Official Opening of Shar Gaden Monastery in Oct 2009 Small | Large


Any connection to any emanation of Manjushri is highly powerful, for it counters that single most pervasive and deeply rooted delusion within us, Ignorance. By creating the causes to be near Manjushri - in any of his aspects - or to be connected to him, we are directly creating the causes to be able to perceive reality directly and to have correct perceptions of the world and situations around us. By that, we chip away at our ignorance - the root of all our own delusions - and we simultaneously gain the wisdom needed for full liberation. So even viewing an emanation of Manjushri, through Dorje Shugden, for example (or also Kalarupa, Yamantaka etc), we take one step closer to achieving this. The imprints are far more powerful than we think.

diablo1974

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Re: "What is all the fuss!!?"
« Reply #6 on: July 08, 2012, 06:36:10 PM »
yes, indeed...why not a change...since all the buddhas has the same mind. When you worship or propitiates one buddha is equivalent to all the buddhas in the ten directions. Personally i felt that there is nothing wrong if we want to switch to other buddhas. Its the same to me provided if i do not go into details of karmic affinity with the current samsaric and degeneration age. I propitiates DS (including many of my friends) due to the believe in DS karmic affinity out of time in this degeneration age. He is swift like tara, and acquires the qualities of the buddhas and given a name of protector of our time. If we do not propitiates DS, we will lose the lineage and put a halt to the spreading of this practice.

Barzin

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Re: "What is all the fuss!!?"
« Reply #7 on: July 08, 2012, 11:45:26 PM »
Oh well, I don't think we realize it will become such a big mess when His Holiness put the ban on Shugden.  You may ask what is the big fuss because His Holiness tells you that it is wrong.  But the practice is given to you by your guru.  So do you doubt your guru?  It is easier to said and done to "switch" to another protector after all they are all BUddhas, but it is equivalent to abandoning your practice hence your guru.  I find it ironic that on the surface there is a debate going on about practice or not and all the mess and fuss.  But behind those we know will hold the practice dearly and continue to practice dharma because faith is not lost.  If a practitioner is easily swayed by others, then he is not ready for tantric practice.

kurava

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Re: "What is all the fuss!!?"
« Reply #8 on: July 09, 2012, 04:26:06 AM »
"What is all the fuss !!?"

If you believe that everything happens for a reason, then you understand what's all the fuss about.

If you believe HHDL is working hand in hand with DS to propagate the lineage, then you see the reason for all the fuss.

Didn't the ban elevate DS from just a Gelug dharma protector to an international icon of Vajrayana controversy ?

Didn't  DS is made known to almost every Vajrayana practitioner as a result of "all the fuss" ?

As a result of the fuss, DS is one of the fastest growing protector practice in the world. Indirectly it also draws people to the Gelug lineage. People in China are attracted to DS because it is "against " HHDL. It's human nature to take stand with one against another. They feel a sense of camaraderie, a righteousness for the "truth" be known. If you follow this line of reasoning , then " all the fuss" has a purpose and it sure looks like the purpose is being fulfilled.

Ensapa

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Re: "What is all the fuss!!?"
« Reply #9 on: March 22, 2013, 05:36:33 AM »
I came across this interesting blog post and thought I would share it here because it relates to me as a practitioner and also the questions I myself ask. There are certain interesting points which I have highlighted. Please feel free to comment and expand on what was written below in order that we may continue to learn and absorb more!

"Why not just ask another Deity or Buddha to protect us?! I have been relying upon this Wisdom Buddha Dorje Shugden for 27 years and have felt every day his beneficial influence in my life. I'll try and give some context here to help the general reader.

According to Mahayana Buddhism there are countless Buddhas, or enlightened beings, because everyone (Buddhist or not) always has the potential to perfect their love, compassion and wisdom. The Wisdom Buddha Dorje Shugden is one Buddha among many. Some people trying to figure it out have asked me, "Why the fuss about this particular Buddha? Why not just give in to the Dalai Lama's wishes to stop the worship of this Buddha? Isn't all Buddhism the same?" This is equivalent to suggesting to a Franciscan that he stop making prayers to St. Francis. What may seem an obscure practice to others, including other Christians, is an essential part of others' faith.

But to understand the context, we can step back a moment to point out that Dorje Shugden practitioners are all Buddhists who rely on Buddha, Dharma (inner realizations of his teachings), and Sangha (the spiritual community). As Buddhists, we are dedicated to improving our inner qualities such as love, compassion and wisdom to find greater peace of mind and capacity to help others, culminating in the highest spiritual goal of enlightenment for the sake of all living beings. Along with that we are striving to overcome the so-called delusions in our mind, such as anger, greed, pride and ignorance, that cause our own and others' suffering. Lofty goals indeed! And that is where Dorje Shugden comes in. We need help if we are going to do this.

According to the Mahayana Buddhism of Tibet and elsewhere, Buddhas can appear in any form they choose -- they have mastered reality, the illusory nature of all phenomena, so they can do as they please! Some enlightened beings appear as teachers (in any tradition), some appear as Dharma Protectors, some appear as ordinary beings. Dorje Shugden is a Dharma Protector manifestation of the Wisdom Buddha Manjushri. He protects the Dharma of love, compassion and especially wisdom in our minds. His relatively wrathful aspect symbolizes his power to help us defeat the inner enemies of the delusions.

This tradition of prayer and worship is not a new thing. It is 400 years old. For 400 years Dorje Shugden practitioners have made peaceful prayers to this Buddha. For example:

“Now is the time to protect the pitiful and protectorless; Now is the time to protect Dharma practitioners as your children.”

This is an unbroken tradition of prayer that has been passed down to us through generations of highly accomplished Buddhist masters up to the present day. The Dalai Lama himself was a recipient of this tradition through his own masters, including the beloved Trijang Rinpoche, who taught him most of the Dharma he knows. Dorje Shugden is a Buddha and so his compassion protects all living beings, but his main job is to protect the realizations (inner spiritual experiences) of those who are sincerely trying to follow the tradition of Buddha Shakyamuni (500BC) as transmitted via the great Indian Buddhist master Atisha (982-1054AD) and the great Tibetan scholar and saint Je Tsongkhapa (1357-1419AD). This is called the Ganden, or Gelug, or Kadampa tradition.

Just as there are many paths up the mountain, so there have always been many Buddhist traditions, all dating back to Buddha Shakyamuni (500BC). Dorje Shugden practitioners are not claiming to have the best tradition, just the one that works best for us.

In reality, there is no fuss, especially for those of us who has the good fortune to encounter a Guru that practices Dorje Shugden. We dont need to visit every other center in the country and tell them we would like to step in their centers but we practice Dorje Shugden. We can just quietly do our practice and I dont see the problem with that. What it is a problem for are Shar Ganden and Serpom. They are being discriminated in their own backyard so as Dorje Shugden practitioners we should do what we need to, to support those monasteries. But out of Dharamsala, the amount of Dorje Shugden monasteries around is quite a lot and they just keep sprouting like mushrooms after a summer rain.