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Re: Ole Nydahl and Diamond Way Buddhism
Posted by: dr. thomas ()
Date: October 25, 2008 02:05AM

Sam,

I liked your post down to the part about "free love" and the "oppurtunity to participate in that." While not directly abusive, it is a fact of these types of groups that individuals wish to please the leader as the leader is seen as the source of the blessings the individual is seeking. It is irresponsible in the extreme for Ole to think that sexual relations with him would not be tained by this very real influence.

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Re: Ole Nydahl and Diamond Way Buddhism
Posted by: Outsider ()
Date: October 25, 2008 02:18PM

Quote
sam108

I'd also like to comment on claims of "sexual abuse". I think some people misinterpret
both the open attitude to relationships which is common (but not compulsory) in the Diamond Way
community, and also the traditional Tantric Buddhist spiritual approach to sexuality. Some people
like the idea of openness in relationships; other people find that concept hard to fathom. But there
is nothing specifically Diamond Way about that, it is also a broader (albeit minority) view within
Western culture, shared by groups of all sorts of different persuasions, spiritual or secular. I myself,
I have always been inclined to that attitude towards relationships, long before I ever even heard of
Diamond Way, so that aspect doesn't bother me. But I understand a lot of people can't understand it;
maybe they should just live and let live, rather than condemn them?

The other aspect of the sexual question -- traditionally, in Western culture, the sexual and spiritual
domains were considered largely disjoint, except in the specific case of marriage. So, the idea of
a spiritual teacher having a sexual relationship seems highly improper. But, I think the impropriety
really comes from the betrayal of trust -- in the Christian tradition, for instance, ministers of religion
are expected to behave in a way which excludes sexual relations with either anyone (celibacy), or
no one but their marital partner. Thus, for a religious functionary in that sort of tradition to engage
in a sexual relationship with a follower is to violate the teachings of their religion, and thus violate
the trust which the follower has placed in them as a minister. But, if a religion doesn't teach that,
then no such violation of trust occurs. I'd say the same thing about attempts to analogize medical
ethics into spirituality -- if you go to see a physician, you don't expect a sexual relationship, and
thus for a physician to engage in one is inappropriate. On the other hand, do you expect a sexual
relationship if you go to a spiritual teacher? Well, that really depends on the nature of their teachings.
If they teach e.g. "no sex outside of marriage", which would judge that such a relationship is improper,
and then seek to engage in one anyway, that suggests they are being abusive. Whereas, if they teach
"free love" (to use an old phrase), and offer you the opportunity to participate in that with them,
how is that a betrayal? It's not a betrayal; its just their being truthful to their own teachings.

I understand that, for someone to describe their experiences as "sexual abuse", they must be in
great personal pain. At the same time, I feel that the term should really be restricted to cases
involve minors, or those of restricted capacities (e.g. the intellectually disabled), or non-consensual
cases (i.e. rape). If an adult of sound mind consensually engages in sexual activity, then I don't
think we should call it abuse, even if they later regret doing it. I'm sure some people have had
sexual experiences in the context of Diamond Way which they later regretted -- just as people
have had sexual experiences they have regretted outside Diamond Way as well -- but unless they
involved lack of consent or other violations of the law, I don't think its fair to label them abuse.

Thanks for listening
Samuel

Sam, I guess you are not a parent, picture this if you may, someone who was 100% monogamous and expected that of their partner until some time after coming into contact with DW. This person suddenly becomes enlightened after an extensive time in the bossom of a particular DW centre and becomes intimate with a DW teacher, guru, lama, yogi or whatever they label themselves on any given day (who is proud of their closesness to Ole Nydahl). Free love as you would suggest would indicate that any intamacy would be open knowledge to both parties rather than shrouded in lies (the case in mention) that were even passed on to the couples children.
DW may indeed be for some but when it comes between people and affects those not involved in such a manner, then its edicts, influences and morals have to be questioned objectively and instances like this brought into the open.
I have seen what I mention above happen and I would not wish it upon any other families but I have no doubt the troubled lambs of this world will continue to the fold of DW. We can all be intellectually disabled at times of extreme stress, grief or during relationship problems therefore we are all open to abuse and those who see their opportunities to abuse mind, body and spirit for their own gain.

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Re: Ole Nydahl and Diamond Way Buddhism
Posted by: Hao ()
Date: October 25, 2008 05:19PM

Hi All

I am another member of DW. I found this site trough google alerts, set on “Ole Nydahl”.

First of all, I must say to Outsider, I do not know your friend nor his motives. Lama Ole Nydahl is very specific about not to create debt, as well as not cheating or in other ways hurting ones partner. Especially when children are involved. Whatever your friend is doing, it sounds like an act of free will. Did he skip the part about taken responsibility of own actions?

I can completely recognize and supports the picture davidlondon gives of DW.

I am very happy with the free atmosphere I met in DW. It seems there is really a lot of space to decide for one self how to live ones life. This is as far as I am concerned not really the trademark of a cult. I am completely monogamous family person, by the way. I met nothing but respect for this.

HaO

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Re: Ole Nydahl and Diamond Way Buddhism
Posted by: Emma C ()
Date: October 25, 2008 11:48PM

'Hao' is a Diamond Way troll. He has posted exactly the same things on the Wikileaks link. Wouldn't be surprised if he's the same person as davidlondon/krampapa. Notice how the only people who try to legitimise Diamond Way are members who have just signed up and are members. At least this time he admitted he's been searching out information critical of the cult on Google.

[protest signs attached]

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Re: Ole Nydahl and Diamond Way Buddhism
Posted by: dr. thomas ()
Date: October 26, 2008 05:22AM

I found this on another site:

"The true beliefs of the group are kept secret from members until they are sufficiently brainwashed, and before that are lied to, just as Diamond Way lies to the public about it's true beliefs. Members only get to the really weird stuff once they get higher up in the hierarchy. Those higher up in this heirachy lie to both those lower down and to the public at large about their true beliefs. Their excuse for this is to simply say people are "not ready". (sounds like not sufficiently brainwashed to me!)"

Perhaps the members of Diamond Way could explain what this person might be referring to.

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Re: Ole Nydahl and Diamond Way Buddhism
Posted by: sam108 ()
Date: October 26, 2008 07:21AM

Quote
Outsider
Sam, I guess you are not a parent, picture this if you may, someone who was 100% monogamous and expected that of their partner until some time after coming into contact with DW. This person suddenly becomes enlightened after an extensive time in the bossom of a particular DW centre and becomes intimate with a DW teacher, guru, lama, yogi or whatever they label themselves on any given day (who is proud of their closesness to Ole Nydahl). Free love as you would suggest would indicate that any intamacy would be open knowledge to both parties rather than shrouded in lies (the case in mention) that were even passed on to the couples children.
DW may indeed be for some but when it comes between people and affects those not involved in such a manner, then its edicts, influences and morals have to be questioned objectively and instances like this brought into the open.
I have seen what I mention above happen and I would not wish it upon any other families but I have no doubt the troubled lambs of this world will continue to the fold of DW. We can all be intellectually disabled at times of extreme stress, grief or during relationship problems therefore we are all open to abuse and those who see their opportunities to abuse mind, body and spirit for their own gain.
I have two things to say in response to this. First of all, relationships end. Very often, it is because one of the persons involved realizes that the relationship isn't fulfilling their needs. Commonly, they find it isn't fulfilling needs they didn't even realize they had. Sometimes joining a new group can be a catalyst for discovering those unfulfilled needs in yourself.

The story of my parent's divorce: my mother realized she wasn't happy in the marriage. This was after she joined a new group. (Not Diamond Way, or any other spiritual group -- in her case, it was St John Ambulance.) She then began an affair with a man from the group, who is now my stepfather. I suppose, what I am trying to say, is I'm sure joining Diamond Way has been the catalyst for some relationships to end. But really, any group will do for this. And monogamy-vs-non-monogamy isn't the issue here, since groups that share the mainstream cultural approach to that issue can play this catalytic role equally well (e.g. St John). From the point of view of a relationship, its the fact that your partner has left you that hurts; it doesn't matter whether it be for another monogamous relationship, or for a non-monogamous relationship. It hurts that they left you, it doesn't really matter whether they left you for one person or two people or so on.

Now, as to the particular case you describe -- there is a limit to what I can say, since I wasn't there and don't know the situation or the people involved. But, I can make some general comments: When relationships fail, people often behave in a less than laudatory way. I think back to when my parents divorced, and the way they behaved then, and especially the pain involved for my siblings and I. I can look at myself, and see that on several occasions, when past relationships of my own have failed, I behaved in a less than ideal manner. Yet, this isn't the fault of Diamond Way, or St John, or any other group which people might happen to get involved in. It's just human nature. People behave poorly in this sort of situation, including Diamond Way people. Diamond Way is just a group of flawed people, striving for enlightenment (i.e. to be better people), but they haven't got there yet. Lying, deceitfulness, etc., are unenlightened qualities. So Diamond Way doesn't encourage them. But all unenlightened beings express them, including myself and many others in Diamond Way.

Lama Ole says that, in terms of sexual ethics, the Buddha only condemned two things: harming others, and incest. Based on that, if people freely agree to take part in an open relationship, there is nothing in the Buddha's sexual ethics which condemns it. But, when you start deceiving others, lying, etc., in sexual matters, that is against his teachings. And it's inevitable that some Diamond Way members at some point are going to fail to follow the dharma in this area. But we can't blame the teachings or the community as a whole for the fact that some members of the community fail to follow the teachings completely. And I don't think that just applies to Diamond Way -- you could apply it to any group of people.

Thanks for listening
Sam

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Re: Ole Nydahl and Diamond Way Buddhism
Posted by: sam108 ()
Date: October 26, 2008 03:57PM

Quote
dr. thomas
I found this on another site:

"The true beliefs of the group are kept secret from members until they are sufficiently brainwashed, and before that are lied to, just as Diamond Way lies to the public about it's true beliefs. Members only get to the really weird stuff once they get higher up in the hierarchy. Those higher up in this heirachy lie to both those lower down and to the public at large about their true beliefs. Their excuse for this is to simply say people are "not ready". (sounds like not sufficiently brainwashed to me!)"

Perhaps the members of Diamond Way could explain what this person might be referring to.

The quote you gave is rather vague, so I can only guess at what it refers to. My best guess would be Tantra. In Tibetan Buddhism, and in all groups of it, Tantra is considered an advanced practice, which should not be attempted until one has completed the proper foundational practices. Diamond Way shares that view of Tantra. Tantra can involve sexual and other practices, which can appear strange to outsiders. On the other hand, they are not really secret, since there are numerous publicly available books one can read, which discuss them in elaborate detail. And just because something is not emphasized to beginners, doesn't mean "lying" about it -- if you ask about it, you will be told; and, given its so widely known (even Wikipedia discusses it in detail), you'd expect anyone with a serious interest in the topic of Tibetan Buddhism would already know about it anyway. At the same time, the point is made, that one is better NOT to read about esoteric practices before-hand, not because they are somehow shameful, but because reading about them before-hand might give you preconceived ideas, which makes them less effective when one actually advances to the point of practicing them. (Mind you, this is more advice than an absolute requirement -- I for one will admit to not having followed it that well.) But nothing here is specific to Diamond Way -- its all generic Vajrayana Buddhism. So if you want to criticize it, fine; but Vajrayana (i.e. Tibetan) Buddhism should be the target, not Diamond Way, for it is common to all of Vajrayana, rather than being in any way Diamond Way-specific.

Samuel

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Re: Ole Nydahl and Diamond Way Buddhism
Posted by: sam108 ()
Date: October 26, 2008 04:24PM

Quote
Emma C
'Hao' is a Diamond Way troll. He has posted exactly the same things on the Wikileaks link. Wouldn't be surprised if he's the same person as davidlondon/krampapa. Notice how the only people who try to legitimise Diamond Way are members who have just signed up and are members. At least this time he admitted he's been searching out information critical of the cult on Google.
Emma, yes I 100% agree that I am a member, and have just signed up to this message board. No one at Diamond Way told me to do that though; it's just basic human nature, that when you are involved in something, you'll have a look to see what the Internet has to say about it (it's not about looking for "critical" materials -- if you are interested in a topic, you'll want to read any material that comes your way, be it positive or negative); and when your friends are being attacked, it's the nature of friendship that you'll strive to defend them as best as you are able to.

According to Wikipedia, "troll" means (in this context): "is someone who posts controversial, inflammatory or irrelevant or off-topic messages in an online community, such as an online discussion forum or chat room, with the intention of provoking other users into an emotional response or to generally disrupt normal on-topic discussion." Given that definition, which conforms with my personal understanding of the term as it is commonly used, I can't see how Hao is a troll. (S)he has simply contributed their own personal experience of Diamond Way. It does appear their personal experience greatly differs from yours; but I can't see how that is grounds for calling them a troll.

I also don't see any evidence to suggest that Hao, or davidlondon, or krampapa (or myself presumably), are the same person. Personally, I don't know any of these people. Yes, we all have a positive view of Diamond Way; but, of course, you have to have a positive view of an organization to remain a member of it. (You'd expect that: Everyone who is a member of the Scouts has a positive view of the Scouts; everyone who is a member of a political party, has a positive view of their party; everyone who goes to church has a positive view of their church; etc.) If everyone who defends Diamond Way is the same person, does it follow that everyone who criticizes it is the same person also? I think neither.

As to your reference to Wikileaks, I've reviewed Hao's postings on that website, and I'd have to say that personally I am largely in agreement with what (s)he says. But that's not because I'm Hao, or even know Hao.

Samuel

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Re: Ole Nydahl and Diamond Way Buddhism
Posted by: Emma C ()
Date: October 26, 2008 04:36PM

Sam108 - You fail to mention the way Diamond Way groups force members to only date those inside the group. Any couples where one side is not in Diamond Way is made to break up. I have also seen them 'arrange' couples to make those higher up in the hierarchy look more 'successful'.

In this way they have more in common with Scientology than St. John's Ambulance!

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Re: Ole Nydahl and Diamond Way Buddhism
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: October 27, 2008 12:29AM

For someone who has just recently found this thread, sam108 shows a suspiciously high degree of rhetorical sophistication.

There are precedents for groups coaching members to show up and provide an oppressive atmosphere on a thread.



[tmfree.blogspot.com]

In the comments section, following this article that has the title,

Book Review. The Relaxation Response by Herbert Benson M.D. with Miriam Z. Klipper

someone quoted descriptions of how people from another, in this case, non-Buddhist cult, were being coached to swarm sites that their group considers bad press.

Scroll down and read the material posted on October by anonymous. This comment begins with the following paragraph and then lists a series of URL links to various sites the group considers sources of bad press. The groups 'rapid response force' (my term) is given precise tactical instructions specific to each site.

Just like a teacher at culinary school advising how to adjust ingredients for this or that recipe.
So if one group is doing this...it wouldnt be surprising to hear that other groups do this too..even have a response protocol.

I just received this second-hand and wanted to give everyone a heads-up and a good laugh. Note that after the first link, some suggestions are made as to what "enlightened" Xers should say, and after the second link TMers are told to "use the main points I am giving here" and then...no wait, I'll let you enjoy the confusion. Tears are running down my cheeks! And I've left out names to protect the desperate, although I don't know why.

Well, it looks like the forces are being marshalled to clog up the blogs that have anything negative to say about X.

Can we (a blog that discusses group X) be far behind?

Enjoy the desperation!


Go read the rest.

Now concerning the nice people who are being persuaded to behave as commandos--

You may risk someday feeling ashamed of what you have done. It may not dawn on you that by letting yourselves be persuaded to function as trolls and cybercommandos, this could actually have the effect of implanting shame that will leave you imprinted with a phobia and unwilling to question the chain of cause and effect that led to your permitting yourselves to be groomed and trained to be bullies, when a true Buddhist sangha would never, ever foster such behavior.

At the time I posed this hunch, I actually thought I was being paranoid. After discovering the October 15 comment from the blog quoted above, what I thought was personal paranoia turned out to be realistic, after all.

For which I am sorry, because it is a sad commentary on what humans allow themselves to do, when aflame with the afflictive emotion of crusade mentality--an intoxicant just as potent as drugs, and forbidden under the terms of the Buddhist precents.

Quote


Trolling as Phobia Implantation?

If you troll against sites your group or your leader consider negative, this might actually injure you and leave you more deeply trapped in a shame generating chain of afflictive emotion--chains woven by the leader and group dynamic that have led you to come here and swarm the board.

I have begun to wonder whether people actually have reason to want to get themselves banned from the RR.com message board?

That in some groups ejection from RR.com might become a badge of honor.

Or, that being banned from the message board could in some cases, actually be encouraged or even required as a condition for promotion to high rank within some organizations that dislike what RR.com is about.

For if these hypothetical persons later decided they wanted to leave that organization, they might feel afraid to defect, fearing they have no place else to go, and have burned all their bridges.

Worse, they might feel their previous trolling made them permanently unwelcome to RR.com and they'd hesitate to use RR.com as a resource for their own healing--a sort of phobia implantation.

Get a person to troll RR.com and get banned, to ensure that even if they later defect, they might never feel able to talk openly on RR.com.

If this is the case, and if people are encouraged to troll and be banned from RR.com to ensure they will if they later defect, feel avoidant of RR.com this would be a tragic outcome.

Again, I dont know if this is actually done, but its not a concept foreign to
espionage tactics--at least as described in spy novels.

If anyone has once been a troll here, and later genuinely recognizes that they would appreciate being able to enjoy an honest and respectful discussion in RR.com's unique and protected environment, plus its splendid
research archive--

In the words of the old Motel 6 ad, RR.com will keep the light on for you, and a place at the table when your trolling days are truly over.

[forum.culteducation.com]



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 10/27/2008 12:40AM by corboy.

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