Must Watch Advice from HH Kyabje Zong Dorje Chang on Dorje Shugden (full version)

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Dear readers,

This initiation of Dorje Shugden was conferred in Los Angeles in the 1980s onto Geshe Tsultim Gyeltsen’s own students in Thubten Dhargye Ling. Prior to Kyabje Zong Rinpoche giving the advice, Geshe-la formally requested Kyabje Zong Rinpoche to give an initiation of Dorje Shugden. Geshe Tsultim Gyeltsen was a very strong and devoted practitioner of Dorje Shugden and you can hear Geshe Tsultim Gyeltsen’s voice at the beginning of the video.

After the formal request was made, Kyabje Zong Rinpoche himself, who is the overlord of all tantric mandalas, gave the profound initiation of Dorje Shugden to Geshe-la and all his disciples. And thereafter, Geshe-la and all his students practiced Dorje Shugden very strongly and very devotedly until the ban.

We have no reports of what happened after that.

Transcript :

— (Geshe Tsultrim Gyaltsen speaks in Los Angeles) —

My root guru His Holiness Kyabje Zong Tulku Dorje Chang Lobsang Tsundu Thubten Gyaltsen gives most emanation deity Gyalchen Dorje Shugden’s life entrustment initiation along with very pure and excellent biographies and stories, here is the voice record while giving the empowerment.

I, Geshe Tsultrim Gyaltsen student formally requested.

— (His Holiness Kyabje Zong Rinpoche begins to speak through a translator) —

After receiving this Dorje Shugden initiation, you have to do puja once a month. Also, it is necessary to follow the commitment, and you have to make a commitment with the lineage and with the order.

So that means, for example you [might] receive teachings from different traditions but mainly, your practice, your focus, your energy [should be put] into this lineage, the Gelugpa lineage.

If you have to or if you wish to do some kind of Dharmic activities with other sects of Buddhism, that is okay to do some kind of activities but your main practice or the principle practice, you have to make the commitment with this lineage of Lama Tsongkhapa. That’s why I mentioned before, you have to know and told that you should not take initiation if you are not sure. So once you take this initiation, then you have to make a commitment with the Gelug lineage and this is necessary not to mix up everything.

There are sometimes rumours that people say, “Oh, Shugden initiation is not…”, people say that it is not necessary to take Shugden initiation or, some people say Shugden is even not good protector.

That is not true. People who have this Shugden initiation and people who practice Dorje Shugden, those people have very great, successful meditation and practice. Even worldly measures, like worldly activities and business and job; everything becomes very successful.

Because it says Dorje Shugden is a Gelugpa protector, so some people they think when you say ‘Gelugpa protector’, they think we are narrow-minded and they think people who practice Shugden, they think they are narrow-minded and they think people who practice Shugden, they are sectarian. Actually, not sectarian…maybe because they are sectarian so they think that the people who practice Shugden are sectarian. People make up all kinds of stories and rumours, you should know that beforehand.

Some people, after taking the Shugden initiation and teachings, when they hear these rumours, they think…ignorant people, narrow-minded people make those rumours, and some people think that it is true and so maybe they give up the practice or they even don’t want to have this protector which is very bad, and that is not good for the person.

Actually it is up to you, whatever you want to do is up to you; your own life, everything is your own choice and your freedom and your own enlightenment, and what you want to do or not is up to you but I’m talking about what is good for you. You have to be very careful about what you do and you should not become gullible; you should not just follow someone saying “this is no good” and listen to all these stories from people. You should not change your mind, and you should always be aware and you have to make sure.

In Tibet, it doesn’t matter what people say and actually in Tibet, there’s many people who follow this and do this practice and actually, always there’s more and more people who do this kind of meditation.

So you have to know this, you have to be very sure or otherwise, later on, if people say to you “Oh, this practice is no good” and they make all kinds of stories and rumours…then if you give up, then it’s not good for you and then it will be a big mistake for you. Therefore you have to make sure that you keep this commitment and follow this commitment.

Because this is your own choice, and no one says you should do or you must do this and your own…like you choose to do this so you have to think about this very carefully. No one says you must do this without your own choice, and it’s like if you don’t want to and no one can say “you should do this or shouldn’t do this.”

(repeated from Part 1) Because it says Dorje Shugden is a Gelugpa protector, so some people they think when you say ‘Gelugpa protector’, they think we are narrow-minded and they think people who practice Shugden, they think they are narrow-minded and they think people who practice Shugden, they are sectarian. Actually, not sectarian…maybe because they are sectarian so they think that the people who practice Shugden are sectarian. People make up all kinds of stories and rumours, you should know that beforehand.

This is a very special protector and very precious, so therefore you have to do puja monthly.

You have to do the puja once a month, the prayer, long sadhana or long prayer, once a month but if, for example, if next month, if you know you’re going to be very very busy, if you know that you can’t do this, it’s impossible – then you can do the puja for next month, this month. The month before, you can do two [pujas] within two days.

If you don’t know how to read the sadhana, the prayers; if you cannot do the sadhana or you’re unable to do [the sadhana], then you also can ask the Lama, or monks or teachers to do this for you.

It is very important to know that you really want to take this initiation, and it is not just to come here and take this initiation because other people are taking this initiation. If you feel “I should do this and if I don’t do, then maybe I’m going to miss something”, that is the wrong idea. If you really want to make the commitment, then you should take. Otherwise you shouldn’t.

As I mentioned before, if you don’t know how to say the prayer and if you’re unable to do the puja once a month, then you can ask a Lama or your friend who knows this prayer and this monthly puja – you can invite them to your place, and ask them to do the puja.

Or if you can’t do [the puja] at your home, then even if it’s long-distance, like at some kind of monastery or where the Lama or the friend is – you can ask them, or him or her, to do this puja.

The reason I’m saying this again and again is because if you don’t follow just any kind of people, and if you’re not gullible, then it’s okay.

But it is possible sometimes that even a Lama or monk or some kind of teacher says “this is not right, and it’s wrong, and you shouldn’t do this kind of practice” – then it’s possible that you can change your mind. You think, “Because a Lama or some kind of teacher is saying this to me, maybe it’s true” – so people are very easily influenced and they can change their minds.

And one of the reasons because many Westerners don’t know the Dharma deeply, and all the significance and symbolism and the meanings. They also don’t know who is the right teacher and who is not the right teacher; they just go wherever there is a teacher or some sort of Lama, and they go and listen to all these teachings and that’s why. Westerners are generally very honest people, very direct, and very…they’re good people, they have a good heart.

Like in India or in Tibet, sometimes they…some people, they don’t practice Shugden but they say they are practicing Shugden. And some people, they do practice and they say something else. What people say and what they do is different, and so there’s kind of a corruption.

In India, some people mislead other people, other Tibetans. When some Tibetans ask them to do the Shugden puja, they will say, “Yes, I will do puja for you.” But after they go, they will do something else, and not the Shugden puja – they do another different puja. The people who asked them to do puja, they don’t know – if they can’t read, they can’t read and write – that these people say they are doing Shugden puja, but they don’t do it. They do something else and they just do what they want to do, and it’s very bad.

The reason why they do that is because in India and Tibet, householders will invite laypeople or monks to do this puja. It is a long puja and long day, so the household makes offerings like dana. These people are lying, saying they’re doing the Shugden puja but they don’t do. And they actually don’t like to do Shugden puja but in order to get some kind of benefit or money or some other reason, they say they do the pujas and it’s very very bad and very samsaric motivation.

Eventually those people, the householders who request for the Shugden puja will know or realise; they know that these people are not doing the right puja because they feel that it is not helping. It is not working because they are not doing the real puja. Eventually, they can feel intuitively because it is not helping, it doesn’t feel right. They will say they don’t want those people to do the puja, and will ask someone and make sure that the people who do the Shugden puja, are also practicing Shugden.

Here, we don’t have that kind of problems and there is no doubt. I’m just talking about general stories so that you have some type of understanding and everything.


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5 total comments on this postSubmit yours
  1. Excelent advice by holy great matser. Everythings Zong Rimpoche says is no mistake. We must never let go of Rimpoche advice no matter how dificult the time and obstacles.

    This website of Shugdem very good. Many watch this website everyday. Thank yuo very much for make availablle.

  2. Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen practiced Dorje Shugden very deeply and advised his students to do so in Los Angeles. He requested Kyabje Zong Rinpoche to confer advice, initiation and explanation of Dorje Shugden. Here you can hear the recorded voice of both Geshe-la and Kyabje Zong Rinpoche who have both passed away now. As a result of Geshe la, many students in the West took on the practice of Dorje Shugden until today.

  3. Thanks HH Kyabje Zong Rinpoche for the profound teaching about Dorje Shugden practice and commitment. We must believe our Guru and shouldn’t simply listen to any rumor. I agreed that one must be ready and stable before receiving any initiation.

  4. Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen is said to have given up on Dorje Shugden practice. What is the message here? What is his opinion then. Is Geshe Tsultrim Gyeltsen saying Zong Rinpoche (his root guru) is wrong? Why would he abandon the words of Zong Rinpoche and then follow Dalai Lama? He practiced Shugden most of his life and nothing negative happened to him so why give up? Just because Dalai Lama said so? Is he saying Zong Rinpoche is wrong and only Dalai Lama is correct? So shall we follow the same advice, whenever we hear a more famous lama give advice, we should abandon our teacher and go after a more famous lama’s advice and ignore the advice of our personal gurus. Why is Dalai Lama right over Zong Rinpoche ? What message is this giving all practitioners? Geshe Gyeltsen giving up the practice seems like a political move to align himself with a strong lama or famous teacher ignoring the advice of his personal teacher so his personal fame and centre will grow perhaps? It can be seen like so? Shall we do the same, abandon Geshe Gyeltsen’s lineage and practice and go after a more famous lama?

    During Geshe la’s remaining years and after his death, many of his students had left and or abandoned the centre. If you are to visit his centre now which is under the administration of Ganden Shartse Monastery, 90% of his students have left and many of his sangha have disrobed. Very few people attend the centre now in Long Beach. He had 5 persons ordained during his time and four out of them disrobed and one old nun is still in robes but does not visit the centre. Geshe-la’s example of ‘chasing’ after famous lamas and abandoning his practice perhaps returned with his karma of students abandoning his practice, teachings and lineage perhaps during his life and after his death?

    Geshe-la told one of his close students when the Shugden controversy first started that even if Dalai Lama told him to give up Shugden, Geshe la would not. This senior student does not want to reveal his name, Geshe la had explained this to this student whom I’ve met. Some students left because Geshe la ‘gave up’ his Shugden practice. They lost faith in Geshe la because they felt it was a political move and not spiritual.

    Either that or Geshe La in his heart never gave up Shugden but only appeared as so to please the Dalai Lama?

  5. It is more important to practice kindness, tolerance, patience steadfastness and gratitude then to be seen with the “right” camp. It does not matter that our teacher is not well known or popular with 10s of thousands of followers. It is more important that once we decide that is the right teacher, we follow consistently to his teachings and not bad mouthed other teachers. At the end of the day Enlightment is ours to achieve on our own path. There is no need to judge others if they are right or wrong.

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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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