Author Topic: Are the Buddhas, DalaiLama & Dorje Shugden insane? Or is it divine crazy wisdom?  (Read 24425 times)

Vajraprotector

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If his reputation is totally destroyed, how will he be able to spread it?

I make this point a third time: The Dalai Lama is destroying his reputation through his very own actions; his reputation is not destroyed by those who would point out the harmful, samsaric nature of his actions.

And, what about preserving the reputation of Shugden Lamas (against the Dalai Lama's slanderous speech) so that they may continue to spread the Dharma to others?

 ???
I think we need to look at which group/ target audience we are talking about when we speak about Dalai Lama's reputation being destroyed.

For those who are actively following Tibetan politics and are exposed to Dalai Lama's flaws and “deceptions” long term, it is Dalai Lama’s actions that tarnish his reputation. But if we are talking about the general public (the world who doesn’t know about Dorje Shugden and not interested in Tibetan politics but in Tibetan BUDDHISM), it is others accusing Dalai Lama and HIGHLIGHTING Dalai Lama’s flaws/ actions that is causing Dalai Lama’s reputation to be at stake as the most respected and widely recognized icon of Buddhism.

For example, on 28 April 2008, Shugden devotees organised a press conference in New Delhi. The declared intention of the event was to publicly express concerns about the group's perceived persecution at the hands of the Tibetan exile community. The speakers, however, were shrill in their criticism of the Dalai Lama, who they portrayed as an arbitrary ruler effectively preaching violence and responsible for the protests that took place in Tibet during spring 2008. Their condemnation echoed, in parts literally, comments made by the Chinese authorities against the Dalai Lama.

I agree with Dharma Defender. Firstly, it's about preserving the Dalai Lama's reputation NOT for a free Tibet, but about preserving his reputation so that he may continue to spread the Dharma to others. He has brought Dharma to many people, beyond any of us here. What I think is worse is not that one lama’s reputation is being destroyed, but Buddhism in general, because the people who wear the holy robes are on the street protesting and calling their spiritual leader a liar - it implies that Buddhists can’t solve their problems internally and has to make their voice heard through screaming on the street (instead of other methods like FASTING may be?). It is a clear example to the world that protesting for one’s right is more important than Dharma practice nor Sangha’s image.

I haven’t heard anything about Shugden Lamas being slandered by Dalai Lama (may be I am not exposed to it?).

I personally think Lama Gangchen Rinpoche is a shining example of how to deal with this controversy. Although he is considered an enemy of Tibetans by the Tibetan Government in exile, and for his practice of Dorje Shugden he has been expelled from Sera Mey Monastery of which he has brought much financial benefit in the past, he didn’t protested nor demand for his rights.

I read that Rinpoche consulted Dorje Shugden through his medium and Dorje Shugden said it would be very beneficial to make known ancient tantric meditations with excercises. Rinpoche then embarked on his highly successful body and mind tantric healing excercises that the Tibetan Government in exile vehemently ridicules, and discourages on their 'official' websites.

Gangchen Rinpoche’s success is widely acknowledged and there arise a great respect for him and Dorje Shugden, due to his perseverance and his works that benefits many in the world. Gangchen Rinpoche and his students has all rights to protest, especially when he has been put on the list of Tibetan “enemies” for his only 'crime' -  Rinpoche practices Dorje Shugden. But I guess he doesn’t need to, because his works and the benefit that H.E. can bring to many is more important than his “rights”.









DharmaDefender

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If his reputation is totally destroyed, how will he be able to spread it?

I make this point a third time: The Dalai Lama is destroying his reputation through his very own actions; his reputation is not destroyed by those who would point out the harmful, samsaric nature of his actions.

And, what about preserving the reputation of Shugden Lamas (against the Dalai Lama's slanderous speech) so that they may continue to spread the Dharma to others?

 ???

Like Vajraprotector, I too perhaps haven't been exposed to the slanderous things the Dalai Lama supposedly says against Shugden lamas. In all cases however, whether DS related or not, I look at the lamas based on their actions and results, and not based on what other people say.

Action: The Dalai Lama banned Dorje Shugden
Result: The ban seems to coincide with the spread of Dorje Shugden's practice, keeping it alive in strongholds around the world. The Dalai Lama also spread Dharma to hundreds of thousands of people, for whom his picture brings them much peace of mind and hope. Do you really want to take what little peace they might have away from them? I'm sure the Shugden lamas' minds and actions are strong enough to withstand the ban...perhaps this entire exercise is purification for us. After all, with anything incredibly holy, obstacles always arise.

I'm not being an apologist for the Dalai Lama's actions but because we cannot judge his (or any lamas') motivations, nor can we see the end result of this ban, we cannot make premature assumptions on whether the Dalai Lama is good or bad, or whether his actions are harmful and samsaric or not.

Middleway

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Action: The Dalai Lama banned Dorje Shugden
Result: The ban seems to coincide with the spread of Dorje Shugden's practice, keeping it alive in strongholds around the world.
[/quote]

So if you were to put this logic into a syllogism it would be:

'The Dalai Lama's action of banning Dorje Shugden practice is a cause for the flourishing of Dorje Shugden practice because the two events are concurrent.'

Lets put this to the test. First the reason needs to have a definite relationship with the predicate.  So 'because the two events are concurrent' must have a definite relationship with 'the ban causing the flourishing of Dorje Shugden practice'.

There are two main types of relationship - natural & causal. If a natural relationship is present that means the flourishing of Dorje Shugden practice is the same nature as someone imposing a ban on it.  This is like saying the flourishing of racial freedom is the same nature as apartheid, so I think we can say this is incorrect.  Saying that a ban is a cause of the flourishing of the banned thing is also like saying apartheid is a cause of racial freedom, so we can also dismiss the presence of a causal relationship.

For the sake of thoroughness though, lets carry the syllogism through by looking at whether it is qualified by the three modes:

1) Property of the subject: Is the reason 'the two events are concurrent' a property of the subject 'The Dalai Lama's ban'.

No. Why? Because Dorje Shugden practice can flourish independently of a ban on it. Or you could say a ban on Dorje Shugden practice does not naturally give rise to the flourishing of that practice - so the flourishing of DS practice (one of the 'two events') is not a property of the ban.

2) Forward pervasion: is the reason 'the two are concurrent' pervaded by the predicate '[the ban] is a cause of the flourishing of Dorje Shugden practice'.

No, again because the flourishing of Dorje Shugden practice can happen without the existence of a ban. This is the same as acknowledging that an earthquake in Haiti can happen independently of my drinking tea in Britain.  My drinking of tea may be simultaneous with an earthquake, but the earthquake is not pervaded by my drinking of tea.  If it was I would be very paranoid when drinking my tea.

3) Reverse pervasion: If the predicate '[the ban] is a cause for the flourishing of Dorje Shugden practice.' were not to apply, would the reason 'the two are concurrent' also not apply?

No, because the two can be concurrent even where the ban is not a cause for the flourishing of Dorje Shugden practice.  In the same way, even if my drinking of tea is not a cause of the earthquake in Haiti, the two can still happen concurrently.

So - your logic is unsound & you need to reconsider your standpoint.

[/quote]
I'm not being an apologist for the Dalai Lama's actions but because we cannot judge his (or any lamas') motivations, nor can we see the end result of this ban, we cannot make premature assumptions on whether the Dalai Lama is good or bad, or whether his actions are harmful and samsaric or not.
[/quote]

We could bring more syllogistic action in here.  What constitutes a harmful action?  Does the seed of a sprout cause an oak tree?  Does a sectarian ban cause peace? We can already see results to the ban - huge suffering - had you not noticed? Some people's faith is blind.

By the way - I don't think the Dalai Lama is a lama in more than title, so I would not refuse to question him on that ground.

[/quote]
The Dalai Lama also spread Dharma to hundreds of thousands of people, for whom his picture brings them much peace of mind and hope. Do you really want to take what little peace they might have away from them? I'm sure the Shugden lamas' minds and actions are strong enough to withstand the ban...perhaps this entire exercise is purification for us. After all, with anything incredibly holy, obstacles always arise.
[/quote]

More logic is needed.  What will be the cause of the destruction of the faith in the minds of the DL's disciples when they realise he is a liar?  What will be the cause of his inability to spread the Dharma?  His own actions.  Telling lies causes these things, telling the truth does not.  Telling the truth causes faith to arise.  I'll give you an example:

Recently some Catholic Bishops in Ireland swept a child abuse controversy under the carpet because they did not want to damage people's faith.  The end result has been terrible damage to people's faith because they see church leaders as having no integrity.  If we, as a Buddhist community have the integrity to stand up & point out evil within our own community then when the whole thing inevitably blows up people are still going to be able to have faith in Buddhism, because they will have faith in our integrity.

By the way, on a more emotive note - the phrase 'little peace' is a bit patronising, whoever might be removing it.  Those people probably care very much about human rights & would like to know where it is being abused & take exception to being conned! Saying 'maybe it's purification for us' is also a little glib unless you are one of the people who are being physically threatened - are you?

The message here is simply to look at cause & effect & not fudge over it by saying 'we can not know'.  In an ultimate sense it may be true that ordinary beings like myself 'can not know', but then in an ultimate sense there is no suffering, no cessation of suffering etc. does that mean we should not act to avert it?  If we have compassion we still need to act in accordance with cause & effect.  Or maybe it's better to say, 'in order to have compassion we need to act in accordance with cause & effect'.  Bans on religious freedom cause suffering so we act to lift the ban.  Maybe these actions will work, maybe they will not - I keep my mind peaceful regardless by keeping my motivation pure.  But simply meditating will not lift the ban - this statement is in accordance with logic.  Meditation solves our real problem - our inner problem of bad feeling.  Solving outer problems requires outer action.  In this case it is correct, and in accordance with democratic principles which have contributed to the freedom which is now threatened, to protest peacefully & loudly & to spread the truth however harsh it seems.  Truth being a cause of happiness - not suffering.

Middleway

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BTW - please excuse my inept usage of the 'quotes' - I wish I could promise to get it right next time!  :)

a friend

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Middleway,
Where were you, why were not you with us before? Your logic lesson is impeccable, and you tread the path of reasoning in a way that would be praised by Lord Dharmakirti himself.
My only fear is, who is going to understand you? Who studies logic?

It does not matter, you please go on using your knowledge to debunk false assumptions. Good luck! If you come here to help in this way, believe me, there is a lot to do!



Middleway

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The strange thing is A Friend, that the DL studied logic!  Which is completely illogical given his actions... :-\

emptymountains

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My only fear is, who is going to understand you? Who studies logic?


Try it out: http://www.understandingthemind.org/syllogism.pdf

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1) Property of the subject: Is the reason 'the two events are concurrent' a property of the subject 'The Dalai Lama's ban'.

No. Why? Because Dorje Shugden practice can flourish independently of a ban on it. Or you could say a ban on Dorje Shugden practice does not naturally give rise to the flourishing of that practice - so the flourishing of DS practice (one of the 'two events') is not a property of the ban.


For simplicity, I used the sentence "Banning Dorje Shugden practice is the cause of it flourishing because the two events are concurrent."

For property of the subject, I came up with "Banning Dorje Shugden practice is one of two concurrent events."

This is true, because the reason does apply to the subject. The reason given is not utterly irrelevant/unrelated, so it is indeed a property of the subject. (At least, that is how I understand property of the subject; please correct me if I'm wrong.)

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2) Forward pervasion: is the reason 'the two are concurrent' pervaded by the predicate '[the ban] is a cause of the flourishing of Dorje Shugden practice'.

No, again because the flourishing of Dorje Shugden practice can happen without the existence of a ban. This is the same as acknowledging that an earthquake in Haiti can happen independently of my drinking tea in Britain.  My drinking of tea may be simultaneous with an earthquake, but the earthquake is not pervaded by my drinking of tea.  If it was I would be very paranoid when drinking my tea.


My understanding is that since the subject is not mentioned in the forward pervasion (or the reverse pervasion for that matter), it needs to be more of a "generic" statement. So, in general, "Whenever two events are concurrent, one is the cause of the other."

Obviously, this is not correct because we can think of many counter examples. In short, correlation does not imply causation.

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3) Reverse pervasion: If the predicate '[the ban] is a cause for the flourishing of Dorje Shugden practice.' were not to apply, would the reason 'the two are concurrent' also not apply?

No, because the two can be concurrent even where the ban is not a cause for the flourishing of Dorje Shugden practice.  In the same way, even if my drinking of tea is not a cause of the earthquake in Haiti, the two can still happen concurrently.


In general, "If one event is not the cause of the other, then the two events are not concurrent."

Again, we can think of many counter examples.

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So - your logic is unsound & you need to reconsider your standpoint.


Yes, although I can check off on #1, the other two modes get big X's. Therefore, the reason given is not conclusive. It is still open to doubt.
« Last Edit: February 15, 2010, 11:19:42 PM by emptymountains »

Middleway

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Thanks emptymountains - I'm still not sure about the first mode - I'll have to lube my brain to figure it out. Oh hold on, 'the brain is not the mind because the brain is a physical object…'

this is better than coffee… :)

Middleway

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Still haven't gotten round to chewing over that first mode, but I have been looking at the website that Emptymountains linked to.  There's some very helpful stuff on there.  One thing in particular that caught my attention was the following from an essay on reincarnation, discussing substantial causes vs contributory conditions.  The followng quote comes from it:

'Geshe-la goes on to say that “The substantial cause of a thing must be something of similar type or substance. Thus, the substantial cause of a clay pot must be clay and the substantial cause of a gold coin must be gold.” So, obviously, an apple seed cannot be the substantial cause of an oak tree, which is a basis for saying that they are not part of the same continuum of cause and effect.'

http://www.understandingthemind.org/reincarnation.html

Which is a good thing to bear in mind when we're considering whether a ban on a practice can be a cause of the practice flourishing.  Can we apply the above reasoning directly to the ban do you think?

DSFriend

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'Geshe-la goes on to say that “The substantial cause of a thing must be something of similar type or substance. Thus, the substantial cause of a clay pot must be clay and the substantial cause of a gold coin must be gold.” So, obviously, an apple seed cannot be the substantial cause of an oak tree, which is a basis for saying that they are not part of the same continuum of cause and effect.'

http://www.understandingthemind.org/reincarnation.html

Which is a good thing to bear in mind when we're considering whether a ban on a practice can be a cause of the practice flourishing.  Can we apply the above reasoning directly to the ban do you think?


Please do not see what I'm presenting here as I'm opposing Geshe-la. I highly revere Geshe-la and fold my hands to him.May Geshe-la and all our Lamas live long.

 In one of Shakyamuni's life before he attained full enlightenment, he killed to save many others. Can we then use the same logic to say that he killed due to ill motive. Is it that simple to read others' intentions and minds? I am one on the path of learning with no powers of clairvoyance and dare not make such a judgment on mere outward observations, but strife to maintain equanimity as much as I know how.

Thank you everyone for posting your views and I do spend time to pondering on them, be it similar or opposing.

Middleway

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Please do not see what I'm presenting here as I'm opposing Geshe-la. I highly revere Geshe-la and fold my hands to him.May Geshe-la and all our Lamas live long.

No worries, I wasn't thinking along those lines & I doubt if anyone else was.

In regard to your other point - I personally find the strongest arguments for the wrathful actions which you find unsavory or inappropriate to be those that explain how, regardless of the DL's motives, it is appropriate to oppose him wrathfully. You'll find those arguments in some other recent threads on this topic. One argument I haven't seen, but is very likely there somewhere, is that it is actually a downfall of our Bodhisattva vows not to use wrathful actions where appropriate.  We can debate over when 'appropriate' is I guess, but I don't think a fear over judging someone's actions because they're widely regarded to be holy is a valid reason to end that debate before it begins.

BTW - if I'd caught Buddha Shakyamuni in that previous life - knife in hand - about to kill that fella - I'd have stopped him!  & I think I would have been right to do so.

Middleway

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Yay! Got the quotes working :)

Lineageholder

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when we're considering whether a ban on a practice can be a cause of the practice flourishing.  Can we apply the above reasoning directly to the ban do you think?

Sure.  If introducing a ban is the cause to increase the practice of Dorje Shugden, then turning down the heating in a room is the cause of increasing the temperature, reducing the number of plants in a field is the way to an abundant harvest and the way to increase the effect arising from any cause is to reduce the cause - in other words, the complete opposite of what is observed and understood from the laws of cause and effect.

It's totally illogical, Captain! ???
« Last Edit: February 16, 2010, 07:53:47 PM by Lineageholder »

WisdomBeing

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Sure.  If introducing a ban is the cause to increase the practice of Dorje Shugden, then turning down the heating in a room is the cause of increasing the temperature, reducing the number of plants in a field is the way to an abundant harvest and the way to increase the effect arising from any cause is to reduce the cause - in other words, the complete opposite of what is observed and understood from the laws of cause and effect.

It's totally illogical, Captain! ???

I think that a ban on the practice is not the same as turning down the heating or reducing the number of plants.

As i understand it, the ban is a decree from the Dalai Lama that says if you practice this,
1. you will harm my life
2. Tibet will not gain independence
3. you cannot be at any Tibetan monastery
4. you cannot attend any of my teachings.

Maybe a better analogy would be if there was a ban on eating durians.

There are people who love durians and there are people who hate them. And i bet there are many more people who don't even know what a durian is. Some people won't care what it is but some when some other people hear about the ban, they may be curious. What is this bloody thing people are making such a fuss out of?

Do you know what a durian is?

It's a very strange fruit found in Asia. And it's very much an acquired taste - stinks like an over ripe corpse in a drain.

Some people may follow the ban and NOT continue eating it, but many more who don't care much about the ban may try the fruit and like it.

Therefore, the fruit ban, which actually publicises the fruit, may result in an increase of people who like it.

Likewise, the Dalai Lama's ban - while the Dalai Lama is very much respected, i am sure there are many people who will not follow the ban on his say so. For example, in China, Dorje Shugden is one of the fastest growing practices! Can you imagine how many billion people there who will follow Shugden. In other places, people will google it (hopefully find websites like this, take part in the discussions and read the articles) and come to their own conclusion.

As an aside, I believe that in the 16th century, during King Henry VIII's time, he was considered a God King too and he (and several kings after him) decided to wipe out Catholicism. Of course there was much strife and suffering for Catholics in olde Englande then but today, Catholicism is alive and well in England. Likewise, I believe Dorje Shugden's practice will prevail - because Dorje Shugden himself has said that his time is coming, and you know what? I believe him :)






 
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Lineageholder

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I think that a ban on the practice is not the same as turning down the heating or reducing the number of plants.

No, it's exactly the same.  Someone like Dharmakirti would see that what I said is analogous.

The Dalai Lama's wish is to reduce the number of Dorje Shugden practitioners throughout the world to zero - that's why there's a ban!  It's exactly like those analogies I quoted.  He's not promoting Dorje Shugden, he's getting people to SIGN to say they won't practice and imposing draconian penalties (ostracism) on those who refuse.  The only reason people in China are practising Dorje Shugden is to spite the Dalai Lama.

On what authority do you say that the practice is increasing?  Is there any real evidence? 

Those who follow the Dalai Lama in Tibet (probably most) will probably have stopped doing the practice.  Before the ban there was 4 million Dorje Shugden practitioners in the Tibetan community, there's nowhere near that many now,

Extending your reasoning it would be a good idea to ban Buddhadharma altogether as that will make it flourish. Does that sound sensible?
« Last Edit: February 17, 2010, 10:33:30 AM by Lineageholder »