I dare wonder if part of what makes these Tibetan and other gurus seductive
is not just their promise of power, but also how many of them convey
a vibe of childish playfulness and in some cases, a childish pathos and vulnerability.
Many of us go into the guru scene seeking healing, yes. But it may not
be appreciated how many of us may, without realizing it, seek to redeem
ourselves by healing the wounds we sense in the guru.
Few things are more wounding, more draining than to feel one has failed to heal
the suffering of one's own parents. This can be especially anguishing if one is burdened with a sense that one's own parents failed to achieve their life's purpose.
For one's parents to have died unfulfilled, while one remains alive may leave a son or daughter feeling ashamed not only to have survived, but ashamed to
live fully because the parents have not.
In this predicament, one may feel oneself cursed and perhaps unconsciously hope to be released from bondage by healing the ailments of a surrogate parent, such as a guru.
So many of the Tibetan tulkus were abducted as little children from their own
families, taken from their mothers and sent at pitifully young ages to all male establishments for a life of indoctrination, their humanity displaced, to be
replaced with a life not their own.
A tulku produced by such a system is condemned to function as a "Manchurian Candidate" his actual childhood entombed.
No matter how brilliant and playful such a tulku may be, a scent of soul-death, a pathos, must seep out from the cracks of the tomb.
Perhaps part of the spell that captivates so many Westerners is the hope of
healing and rescuing that lost child in the tulku and thus
somehow heal and love back to health the lost child in oneself.
But as the price of resurrection, the tulku would have to give up tulku hood
and consent to be an ordinary human being.
Which is why most tulkus do not want to be rescued, no matter how much the
buried child in them cries in silent anguish.
It is a mission impossible for disciples.
Trungpa did not want to be rescued.
Isn't that the ultimate gaslighting technique? Training you to believe your perceptions don't count and aren't trustworthy. That's very insidious.
But also keep in mind that this is what narcissistic parents do to their kids: deny the child's perceptions, lead them to think their thinking is off-base.
Kids raised in an environment like that grow up to be extremely vulnerable to predators and scammers, because they don't know how to listen to their inner voice, their gut feelings about things.
Something tells me that TB groups, especially those run by these ego-driven opportunists, are full of people who grew up trained not to trust their instincts or to think about their own needs.
Friends, here is a way to picture what Misstyk is describing.people who grew up trained not to trust their instincts or to think about their own needs.
When we are born, we are already pre-formatted. Pre-formatted to expect and
seek social, physical, emotional contact. We are social mammals. We are born
seeking this before we are even conscious. We are born TRAINABLE.
And, without conscious awareness we are receptive and disposed to expect
And a lot of the training Misstyk refers to takes place before we have any
verbal conscious awareness.
If any of us knows Word, ponder what a pre formatted text consists of, such as template for a document.
Depending on how that template is programmed, anything typed into it will
automatically be positioned according to selected margins, any text will, here and there, be bold, or plain or italic, paragraphs will follow selected specifications.
If you are reared in a fear ridden family, you may be unable to apply critical thinking to anything or anyone that unconsciously reminds you of parental authority figures.
If when you were little someone big and powerful repeatedly violated your
limits, you may have split off your feelings of horror and disgust, so that
you go numb and silent. So, as an adult, if someone who unconsciously reminds
you of your original perpetrator ignores your boundaries, you may go
numb, your mind may shut down and you may freeze. The perpetrator will
then convince themselves you consented, when what you did was do a trauma
response. Later, you may be easily shamed if you try to speak up.
All this spells trouble if someone from an unhappy upbrining seeks healing
in a guru led group, especially one like Vajrayana/Tibetan Buddhism, with
its elaborate methods of training people to distrust their own perceptions.
Trauma survivors are also vulnerable to shame if laughed at. The group laughter
characteristic of guru led groups can easily have a paralyzing effect.
Shame disables the part of our selves that is at the basic neurophysiological level. The scared animal 'freeze' response is the origin of what we humans
experience as shame.
When extreme, shame freezes critical thinking. We forget what we know.
Or, to put it another way, if you grew up finding it horribly painful
to notice that your parents were lying to you, you'd train yourself
to stop noticing inconsistencies in what your parents said and did, so
you'd no longer notice clear evidence that they were lying.
If you found it horribly painful or were punished for applying critical
thinking skills to what adult authority figures in your life
said and did, you'd learn to fear your critical thinking skills and
learn to fear or even feel ashamed of this talent.
Saddest of all, in such an upbringing, you might unconsciously equate
family, nurture and affection with numbing out your own awareness, your own
inner integrity. All this might come to feel like 'home'.
The social atmosphere in a group that enables and makes excuses for a person
such as Chogyam Trungpa, Sogyal, etc would then seem familiar, 'homey'.
Until then, when your guru chairs a board meeting
and it becomes obvious that he has no clue about
an issue, as a prudent member of that board you
shouldn’t hesitate to supply him with the
information he needs. At the same time, as a
Vajrayana student, you must skilfully remind
yourself the guru only looks clueless to you
because of your own impure perception, and that by
appearing to need your assistance the guru is
actually giving you the chance to accumulate
I CAN'T BELIEVE I ACTUALLY USED TO THINK LIKE
Isn't that the ultimate gaslighting technique? Training you to believe your perceptions don't count and aren't trustworthy. That's very insidious. But also keep in mind that this is what narcissistic parents do to their kids: deny the child's perceptions, lead them to think their thinking is off-base. Kids raised in an environment like that grow up to be extremely vulnerable to predators and scammers, because they don't know how to listen to their inner voice, their gut feelings about things. Something tells me that TB groups, especially those run by these ego-driven opportunists, are full of people who grew up trained not to trust their instincts or to think about their own needs.