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Re: Geshe Kelsang Gyatso (New Kadampa Tradition)
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: February 14, 2009 08:33PM


This message board and thread is not for religious discussions about beliefs, but rather to discuss the behavior of some groups and leaders.

Read the rules of the message board again, which you agreed to before posting here.

Generally, it is not "enlightened" to abuse and/or exploit people.

Bad behavior does not denote "enlightenment."

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Re: BBC Documantary "An Unholy Row" about the New Kadampa Tradition
Posted by: Eric Blair ()
Date: February 15, 2009 09:21AM


I have been studying and practising Mahayana Buddhism for a while now and also have a background in dealing with cults. So, with that said, I am sad to see how the NKT and DW are so succesfully exploiting people, especially those in the west, who have an interest in the Dharma.

I had not seen the documentary "Unholy Row" until last night and must thank you for posting the link. I have read a good deal on the Shugden issue and some on the NKT, but that little 30 minute documentary really did a good job of summarizing what is clearly an emotive and complex issue.

What really stuck out to me was Kelsang Gyatso himself. He seems to ooze the kind of hubris and sectarianism that just screams out "cult leader" to me. And while I have no doubt that many people have found a semblance of peace and appreciation of the Dharma, I also don't doubt that he is also doing great harm through his authoritarian tendencies.

Something else I really found disconcerting was the absence of other teacher's books at NKT centers. I know at the Dharma center I go to there are books in both the library and the book store from not only a variety of Mahayana teachers, but from Theravada sources as well. From my point of view, the ability of any faith or system of belief to accept and embrace views counter to their own is a sign of health.

And for those who are of the idea that criticising NKT or DW harms Buddhism itself, I could not disagree more. The reality is that it is those Buddhists who sit by and say nothing in the face of exploitation in the name of the Dharma that are doing the most harm.

Thats enough of a rant for now...

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Re: Geshe Kelsang Gyatso (New Kadampa Tradition)
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: February 15, 2009 11:10PM

One can find ways to discuss the internal affairs of a troubled organization, even if one is an outsider.

But discussions of enlightenment are, in that context a distraction.

One can discuss enlightenment forever and never reach a conclusion, and this will serve to distract from any searching examination of the troubled organization.

For continuing education, here is an article is by a Tibetan teacher.


Tibetan Buddhism in the West

Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche--October 2002


A friend of mine from New York recently sent me an email article titled "Is Tibetan Buddhism Working in the West?" Although my immediate reaction was somewhat defensive, I have to admit that the author made several worthwhile points. It might appear futile for me to add yet another point of view to this seemingly endless debate, but long before modern civilization celebrated free speech, the Buddha stressed respect for reasoning, and emphasized that we should examine a path rather than following it blindly.

Yet, one can't help noticing that even in this so-called "modern age," blind faith is not only alive but kicking, even to the extent of people giving up their lives just because some priest has guaranteed their passage to heaven. It is not only important for us to exercise this freedom to examine the path and its authority, but we must also watch out for the cultural baggage that accompanies it. How much of this culture does one have to buy into? Does being a Westerner mean that one lacks the attributes to be a Buddhist? Or do the gurus have to compromise their teachings to fit into the West? These were some of the questions brought up in the email I received.

For years, Tibetan lamas have won the hearts and minds of many in the West, mainly because of the sophisticated wisdom of the Buddha that they embody, but also because many of them appear gentle and easily amused. The fact that they are an endangered species helps, too, and if some of them do not project sufficient saintliness, there are always a handful of genuine masters that can be put up as window dressing. But the initial infatuation is ending; moreover, some Westerners are beginning to realize that there is a big difference between Buddhism and Tibetan culture. As societal attitudes change, aided by modern media, the scrutiny of public figures and scepticism towards so-called spiritual paths has intensified. For the first time, Tibetans in general and lamas in particular have been forced to savour the bittersweet taste of free society, where freedom comes with responsibility and scrutiny. For some, it's becoming a painful realization that popularity and success come at a price.

Also, reluctantly, Tibetans are accepting that attempts to impose what they see as a superior way of living are not working. But like many in the East, Tibetans still clutch firmly to all of their culture as the ultimate answer to everything, including some of it that they could beneficially do without. As if that were not enough, many have insisted that their Western followers adopt the whole cultural package along with Buddhism. It is this hodgepodge of Tibetan culture and Buddhism that many are having a hard time digesting. Even basic Buddhist teachings such as refuge are now being taken theistically because of inadequate explanation. When we chant prayers like "I take refuge in the Buddha," we barely mention - and we therefore ignore - its essential meanings, such as knowing that one's ultimate nature is the Buddha. Given this, it is little wonder that the author of the article refers to the gurus and sangha as her captors, instead of her liberators.

Because lamas have the role of bringing the Dharma to the West, they have a bigger responsibility for the teachings than do the Western students who are interested but unfamiliar with them. However, instead of making the teachings accessible, some Tibetan lamas have created a huge divide with Westerners through a combination of their superiority complex, their fundamental lack of respect towards Westerners and an inadequate interest in Western thinking. The classic Buddhist analogy of patient, doctor and treatment states that for different patients with different problems, doctors should apply the appropriate cures. Yet, if Tibetan lamas ridicule the culture and habits of their Western students as a total waste of time, how will the remedy ever take effect? Are they really suggesting that Westerners should be given the same teachings as illiterate Tibetan nomads? This lack of respect towards Westerners by Tibetans is not something recent; they have a long-held assumption that Westerners are barbaric.

Even before 1959, many visitors to Tibet were denied entry simply because they were foreigners. One could even argue that Tibetans themselves are mostly to blame for the loss of their country because of their extreme xenophobia and their disdain and rejection of everything foreign as unholy. Despite this, many Westerners are charmed by Tibetan hospitality, politeness and friendliness, little knowing that they originate more from social obligation than sincerity. Behind most of those smiling faces, there is still the underlying reality that you are a Westerner. The few sincere smiles could well originate with the hope that you could be a sponsor or, more recently, help obtain a green card.

Another of the author's remarks that can't be dismissed is that the lamas' complaint is so familiar that it invokes a yawn. Besides seeing the Western pursuit of Dharma as superficial and fickle, Tibetans regard it as merely testing the waters, forgetting that the Buddha himself encourages this analytical attitude. The more that you examine Buddhism, the more you will discover its greatness.

Moreover, for Tibetans to label Westerners as materialistic is more than a little ironical, since material pursuit has become one of the top priorities among Tibetans in general and certain lamas in particular.

Big Tibetan settlements compete over everything from the largest monasteries to the latest and most prestigious brands of car. If some high lamas were just to sell their gold and silver teacup holders, they could feed hundreds of starving Ethiopians for days.

It is true that Tibetans think that Westerners shop for Dharma, and they can't keep the tantric teachings secret; but are they to blame if the lamas themselves turned the Dharma into a travelling show, including performances such as the sand mandala and the lama dances?

It would be better if we could discover all these downfalls of the Tibetans sooner rather than later. Because otherwise, we might become disillusioned, and that might be a reason for giving up the Dharma.

But detecting these downfalls is no easy task. Generations of experience in being hypocritical have left lamas rather subtle and sophisticated.

One example is how many Westerners fall for the almost annoying theatre of the lamas' humility, little seeing that behind the curtain is a fierce fight for who gets the highest throne. This maneuvering becomes especially dramatic when the occasion involves a large crowd, and even more so, if there are potential big donors present, especially those from Taiwan, who seem to judge the value of lamas solely by their rank, or how many letters "H" precede their names. The image of Gautama with a begging bowl and bare feet walking humbly on the streets of Maghada seems to have become a mere myth.

The lamas' influence and dominance in Tibet have not only weakened many secular aspects of Tibetan life such as art, music and literature, in which the lamas have little interest, but in some cases degraded the Dharma as well. If it were not for Buddhism's fundamental view of non-theism, the rule of the more narrow-minded lamas could be as tyrannical as that of the Taliban.

Despite their emphasis on an ecumenical attitude, many lamas encourage sectarianism by guarding their Tibetan disciples possessively and discouraging them from studying teachings from other traditions.

Of course, they have a convenient excuse: their students will become too confused if they do this.

Thus, many Tibetan students from one school have absolutely no idea of the other traditions; but that doesn't seem to stop them slandering the others.

As if it were not enough that they are doing this with Tibetans, the lamas have also coached Westerners in this sectarian game and they have been shockingly successful.

They have also jealously guarded their Dharma centres in the West, although many are merely vehicles to generate financial support for the lamas and their monasteries back home. Supporting those Westerners who are genuinely pursuing the Dharma, or facilitating their studies, are not their primary interests. So, the question remains: Is Tibetan Buddhism ever going to work in the barbaric West? Of course, it will.

The fact that Buddhism could be imported and flourish in then-barbaric Tibet proves that despite the many misdemeanours of its personalities and its alien culture, Buddhism can and does still work for all kinds of nationalities, genders and cultural backgrounds.

Discarding Buddhism, as the author seems to have done, merely because of the misbehaviour of a few Tibetans or their seemingly complex and colourful way of life, does not seem wise.

It is important to remember that it took many decades and generations of courage and devotion to firmly establish Buddhism among Tibetans. Why should we expect that it would be any different in the West? Moreover, measuring the value of Dharma from a materialist perspective or judging it with the arrogance of a so-called objective view is dangerous. It may be obvious that planes fly and boats don't sink, but who is to say whether a person is enlightened or not? Similarly, we should be cautious when comparing social systems.

The author's comment that the social governance of the U.S. is far superior to that of King Trisong Detsun's is ill-judged. During his reign, the U.S. had yet to massacre many thousands of Native Americans, let alone have a sense of social governance.

By contrast, King Trisong had the vision to see the social value of Buddhism. He brought it to Tibet from India, a country with which Tibet had little in common, and he brought it despite countless hardships such as hostility from the sacrifice-loving Bon religion. Were it not for his initiative, Tibet might have adopted the bloodthirsty lifestyle of the local tribes or the so-called civilization of sycophantic Confucianism from neighbouring China.

Furthermore, by asserting that the West has a very good understanding of what it means to be a Bodhisattva and comparing this with concepts such as humanitarianism or social activism, the author is completely missing the point of the Bodhisattva's path. The aspiration of a Bodhisattva transcends mere sympathy for needy or helpless beings. Having that kind of compassion invariably leads one to become co-dependent, insecure and eventually egoistic, because one ends up defining oneself by the extent to which one has helped.

By contrast, Bodhisattvas are not attached to their acts of help or the result. Their aim is to liberate beings from the traps of life and the myth of freedom.

So one might wonder how should a Bodhisattva be? Gentle? Serene? Humble? Ascetic? These qualities might appear universally good, and it may be easy to condemn the lamas' materialistic misdemeanours but, believe it or not, it is even easier to fall prey to their seemingly wholesome simplicity.*

Such hypocrisy is a universal masquerade. I can't help but feel utterly hypocritical on many occasions, as I can easily see myself as the type of lama the author was disillusioned by.

Despite having written this, I know that I will not give up any of my perks, whether high thrones or branded shoes, or even 49 Rolls Royce automobiles (if someone were to give them to me).

It may appear sacrilegious and corrupt to see supposedly renunciant lamas dwelling in luxury and enjoying every imaginable privilege.

Similarly, it doesn't look right when a supposedly compassionate and skillful master manifests as tyrannical and narrow-minded.

But one must be aware that an appearance of simple living can be deceptive. It may sound ironical but just as some would find it hard to give up worldly goods, others could be frantically worried about losing their carefully constructed image of being a simple renunciant and couldn't-care-less crazy wisdom guy.

Isn't it fruitless and painful if one foregoes worldly pleasures just to keep up an image of humility and simplicity? Not only is one not advancing on the spiritual path, but also in the process, one is missing out on a lot of worldly delight.

Given this, we should not condemn the few lamas or practitioners who are seemingly worldly, if when it comes to benefitting beings, they display little or no selfishness. We should venerate and emulate such lamas' absolute indifference towards others' opinions - such as praise for their simplicity or condemnation of their worldliness - and venerate, too, their lack of concern about gaining disciples by being humble or losing them from their behaviour. At least we should admire them for not being hypocritical.

Unlike them, I feel that I am far from overcoming this hypocrisy of false humility and attaining a genuine indifference. For me, renunciation, humility and non-worldliness are still the guiding principles for my path, but not because I have seen the futility of worldly life. It is only because I am a Tibetan Buddhist lama, and this is what the masses think it is right for a lama to do. And what people think still seems to matter to me.

Yet, no matter how often we judge, it is always in vain. This is not to say that being judgmental is morally or politically incorrect, but simply that subjectivity is at the very core of all judgment.

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Re: Geshe Kelsang Gyatso (New Kadampa Tradition)
Posted by: jah ()
Date: February 17, 2009 05:16AM

Actually, in my opinion it is the most important question. The claim to enlightenment is what sets up the authoritarian relationship in the first place and is often an excuse for bad behaviour or for manipulation of others. As far as I can tell, Bhudda never spoke about enlightenment. He spoke about being awake. Enlightenment seems like a gimmick and it is often used to sexually abuse people and to take their money.

I wasn't talking about it from a religious point of view, as you have implied.

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Re: Geshe Kelsang Gyatso (New Kadampa Tradition)
Posted by: retting ()
Date: February 27, 2009 07:52AM

It's always good to ask questions. Even the Buddha taught to that to question is good. There are many Buddhist Groups. FPMT I feel is a good one. I've taken many teachings with HH the Dalai Lama and he is an excellent teacher.

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Re: Geshe Kelsang Gyatso (New Kadampa Tradition)
Posted by: jah ()
Date: February 27, 2009 09:30AM

It's always good to ask questions. Even the Buddha taught to that to question is good. There are many Buddhist Groups. FPMT I feel is a good one. I've taken many teachings with HH the Dalai Lama and he is an excellent teacher.

You appear to be correct. I see, for instance, that FPMT has an extensive and authentic looking home study program. That would be good for people who are still committed to Buddhism but tired of culty sangats.

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Re: Geshe Kelsang Gyatso (New Kadampa Tradition)
Posted by: rrmoderator ()
Date: February 27, 2009 09:34AM

Please be careful not to solicit anyone regarding any religious tradition on this board, which is against the rules.

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Re: BBC Documantary "An Unholy Row" about the New Kadampa Tradition
Posted by: Tenzin Peljor ()
Date: November 06, 2009 04:42AM

Dear Eric,
thank you for your post and thoughts. I didn't follow the discussion any more and didn't read your post until now. I can only agree with your points.
Sadly the Unholy Row BBC documentary is not available any more in the internet, so you had the good luck to get the key points of the controversial setting of NKT by this documentary.

As far as I can see it included only one significant fault: the prayer "Guru, Founder, Blessed One..." is only done when NKT members prostrate to Buddha Shakyamuni and they do not recite this when they prostrate to Kelsang Gyatso. However, all the other points were correct and also the analysis of Stephen Batchelor and the interviews with ex-members, Kelsang Gyatso etc. were very helpful for me.

I hope at one point this BBC docu may be available again, because it summarizes the organisation quite well.

With respect to the silence of many Buddhists to point out the potential dangers of NKT with respect to the damage they have done to others and may potentially continue to do to others: if one has a clear understanding about this and does not communicate this to potential victims of the group, I think this is inappropriate, because it is like knowing a cruel trap of a hunter, and ignoring it, letting the animal running into it. For me this is not a very compassionate attitude.

Again thank you for your post. I mainly came here to inform, that my blog on NKT/WSS/Shugden has a new address:

There is also a nice post by a former NKT follower how he feels and how his situation is now eighteenth month after leaving NKT

Best wishes, Tenzin

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 11/06/2009 04:47AM by Tenzin Peljor.

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Re: Geshe Kelsang Gyatso (New Kadampa Tradition)
Posted by: corboy ()
Date: November 06, 2009 09:52PM

Note: I happen to practice within one of the Buddhist traditions. I have no authority of any kind --- and do not want it.

What follows is an attempt to offer, however clumsily, an interpretation framwork that originates within the Mahayana Buddhist tradition by which the health of a troubled Mahayana Buddist practice commuity can be assessed.

I hope this is not seen as proslytizing, for I do not intend it to be such.

My core question would be:

Does this community and its leader/s use rank, wealth and power in such a way as to support the truthful practice of all members, however humble, and to prevent the exploitation of all members, and avoid favoritism?

Buddha was awakened to practice by seeing an old man, a sick man, and then a funeral for a dead man.

Does the sangha care only for the young, the beautiful and the wealthy? Does it care for its members when they grow ill and old?

Or does the community discard people when they have grown old in its service and need their loyalty reciprocated by being cared for in sickness in old age.

Or is only the old and wealthy guru loved and cared for, while lower ranking older members are told to take care of themselves or leave?

To discard old and ailing members in their moment of need is to violate the precept that tells us to cherish all life and avoid killing.

Does the guru only pay attention to handsome and wealthy members? Buddha was visited by all. He accepted hospitality from the wealthy, yet was visited by the broken hearted women whose child had died and begged him for consolation.

Originally Buddha and the monks dressed in rags stiched together, often rags left over after bodies had been cremated. In those ancient days, all cloth was laboriously handwoven and was precious stuff. Buddha wore silk and brocade as a young prince, but discarded those clothes when he ran away to become a renunciate.

A sangha, especially a Himalayan one, has to beware of too great expenditure on brocades for the guru, if it means the lower ranking members are overworked and lack time to deepen their practice.

More questions for a sangha:

Is there time to practice, or are people kept busy by overworking? Too often an expensive temple requires too much attention to fundraising, flattery of the wealthy, etc.

Supporting practice is more than knowing how to wear robes, conduct the rituals, prostrate to the guru, purchase handsome property and create splendid buildings.

Practice has to include truthfulness and an environment that encourages insight into afflictive emotions and the cultivation of both wisdom and compassion.

And practice includes awareness of and concern for the welfare of all beings, not just the guru and his followers.

One should start out and remain a good citizen and remain that way regardless of what level of tantra one qualifies for.

When a sangha practices a multilivel path, with admission to higher ranks being based on years of practice and secret instruction, that particular teacher has to take very special safeguards against fostering a poisonous climate of greed (greed for admission to advanced tantra) ambition (on the part of the guru and on the part of students who
long to receive such practices).

What I hope is to make a case that the Buddhist precepts actually support naming abuses of power within a sangha rather than the practice of collusive silence that is described for us by Tenzin Peljor.

Tenzin Peljor writes:


With respect to the silence of many Buddhists to point out the potential dangers of NKT with respect to the damage they have done to others and may potentially continue to do to others: if one has a clear understanding about this and does not communicate this to potential victims of the group, I think this is inappropriate, because it is like knowing a cruel trap of a hunter, and ignoring it, letting the animal running into it. For me this is not a very compassionate attitude.

In the Mahayana Buddhist traditions, it is important to consult the Bodhisattva vows when evaluating the health of a sangha.


What follows is my own personal intepretation and reflection on all this. I possess no authority whatsoever.

Regrettably, many justify keeping silent about abuses of power within their sanghas by citing the precept, 'I vow not to engage in slander or harsh speech'.

The problem is, this ignores the precept, which states, 'I vow to protect (or not to slander or defame) the three jewels of Buddha, Dharma and Sangha--Sangha meaning the community of practionioners.

Here is where problems may develop:

If a particular leader of a sangha decided to break away due to personal ambition or discord with his* own leader or a desire to acquire personal power, hold onto valuable property or acquire valuable wealth at a greater rate by not having to share it with his own guru, then the sect or sangha lead by such a person will itself originate from a tangle of greed, hate and illusion, and this will entangle everyone, including new converts, in a web of afflictive emotion originating from the greed, anger and delusion which led to the sect leaders decision to break away and take an independent course.

(I say 'his' when referring to the leader because in Himalayan, Buriat and Mongolian Buddhism, most of the leaders are male)

If an ambitious lineage holder who happens to be of legitmate lineage seeks power, social support and connections by giving tulku recognition to famous, wealthy and untrained persons, these 'recognitions' will be entangled in a mess of afflictive emotion, which does no honor to Buddhadharma, defiles the three jewels and will impose a heavy burden on those so recognized.

If an unqualified person creates a fallcious lineage his or her teaching career is born amid greed for power and a lie, and no matter how sincere his or her students, that teacher will entangle students in a web of greed, hate and illusion..especially if students are encouraged to quarrel with others who have any doubts or concerns about the qualification of their teacher.

Life is complex. People may practice sincerely and gain great benefit, but if their sincere practice is entangled with the afflictive emotions of a teacher or sanga with a troubled history of the kind described above, the practice of that sincere student will be
burdened with entanglements generated by the 'family history' of his or her sangha.

Students come trustfully to practice and arrive with enough personal trouble of their own. For that very reason and because life is short and we do not know how long we are given to live, students are ENTITLED to a clean situation that supports their practice and for that reason deserve not to have their practice further burdened by unspoken troubles and discord originating from their teacher's hidden ambitions.

It is wrong to turn students into human wealth for an ambitious teacher and it is wrong to turn students into soldiers to fight an angry and deluded teacher's sectarian wars with others in the Mahayana world. This drags the three treasures through the mud.

(However, this sad behavior has been observed in traditions other than Buddhadharma. Afflictive emotion is everywhere. May our practice benefit all beings)

Other points:

1) It may be that all too often, people are taught to equate sangha with the guru and forget that this also includes persons low in rank, or who lack full disclosure about the problems within the group. Too often senior members who know all too well about the problems in the group keep quiet when new comers arrive, because they dont want to make Buddhadharma look bad, and they rationalize that they do not want to discourage the newcomers in their dharma practice.

All this does is rationalize a pattern of family secrecy in which newbies are kept from learning the full nature of what is going on in the practice community. Senior members have often surrendered years of their lives and cant bear to admit they might have been serving a disloyal leader and a dubious cause. To stifle these misgivings they tell only sunny things to the new arrivals, perpetuating the toxic secrecy.

This violates the other Buddhist precept which forbids us to lie.

2) If disharmony and wrongdoing already exist in a community, naming it for what it is does not cause the problem--it reveals the problem. If a tooth is decayed, taking a dental X ray that reveals the decay does not cause the problem---it reveals the condition, hopefully while still treatable and before the patient needs a root canal or have the tooth pulled.

Keeping silent about a problem that already exists in sangha is like refusing to go to the dentist, or refusing, if one visits the dentist, to allow the dentist to take an X ray.

Finally there are differences in rank within many Buddhist communities. The purpose of this is to support the practice of all in the community, no matter how humble their status, NOT to accumulate excessive riches, excessive power for a favored few.

For...this would violate the precept that forbids us to be greedy in relation to comforts and resources.

The problem is it is hard for a newbie to know when information is being witheld from them.

That is why my personal interpretation of the precept "I vow not to lie" would read this way:

'I vow not to lie. This means I vow to avoid misleading speech, misleading gestures, misleading silences. I vow to beware of letting people believe I have given them full disclosure when what I have done is give them partial disclosure.'

There are very rare situations, mostly involving small children, where one may not be able to tell the full truth, but one must never, rationalize this to justify infantalizing adults who are sincerely seeking a spiritual path.

Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 11/06/2009 10:12PM by corboy.

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Re: Geshe Kelsang Gyatso (New Kadampa Tradition)
Posted by: whatisacult ()
Date: November 29, 2009 05:18AM

Yippee I finally got on!
request to ex nkt people
Im a member of the New Kadampa Tradition and want to discuss with ex NKT people. I find the tradition works for me & Im able to accomplish the goals I want to accomplish so I could just carry on enjoying myself but that would be selfish. The Buddhist teachings are not written by the NKT. Ive checked each book & found identical translations of lorig lojong etc. I know there are some debates about nihilism & guru devotion. Forget that for a minute. What Im trying to say is that I am following instructions of Geshe Langri Tangpa, Geshe Chekawa, Lamrim of Atisha, Shantideva. And Chandrakirti is my ambition my goal!

But following these teachers is leading me to certain conclusions which have brought me here from my contented little bubble. Before I became Buddhist I was looking to cherish others. Then I got the 2 methods to cherish others in Buddhism as explained by the ancient teachers named above (mothers & exchange). So I did well with cherishing others & thats why I have to leave my bubble & confront all this difficulty & confusion.

What I want to know is how are people getting harmed, what is causing it?

What Ive seen in the NKT is a mixture of things happening due to inexperience, ego & a lot of good too. NKT is run by humans & hence gets problems. The NKt obviously want to read what the criticism is as they are in nks etc. Ive spoke to 3-4 people about this who live in centres & they ALL told me they have nks membership & have read the yahoo group and are trying to understand what happened to you guys. Even I saw on an anti NKT website that Geshe Kelsang let a monk read to him for 2 hours whilst in a *trance like hypnotic sway*. What Im trying to say is that people can go through the 10,000 posts on survivors to try to figure out what is going wrong. And all the other websites. But this information although a huge amount of written material is all over the place.

In summary Im wanting to make a request that you can summarise as a group in one document what you want to say to the NKT and how you think it needs to change.

Ive tried myself to write a document. Ive read 1000s of your posts. I was even going to attend a scientology & a jehovahs witness meeting to try to see if there is a pattern. In fact Im going to one tomorrow & I want you to know Im sure it will be horrible but Im doing this because I want this to be sorted out. I feel the NKT were very excited in the past & because people were very new to religion & spiritual they appeared intense. But now people are much calmer & more sensible & down to earth. I hope you can see that Im sincerely wanting to get to the bottom of this & perhaps we could construct something that it wouldnt take Geshe Kelsang 2 hours to read & still its not clear what the problem is. I read for many days & Im still not clear. I care very much about Geshe kelsang & I care about you & the Dalai Lama & the Tibetans & I believe that as buddhist its important to hold non buddhist also in high esteem. For example Rick Ross is as important as a Buddhist monk. He isnt practicing Buddhism & cant lead me to attain the goals I want to but in terms of valuing & respecting he is important because that could be me! I go out every day & work on valuing non religious people & respecting them as mahayanist should. Because thats my understanding of what to do & its brought me to the conclusion that this needs sorting out so people feel better. I think people start repeating over & over because they dont feel heard. I want to say Im feeling your not being heard or getting the message accross to people like me & I want to hear your message.

I dont want to hear how the world would be better without the nkt or a list of a few points off the top of your heads. What we (the people in my situation) need is a concise & clear summary that includes all the points. The Shugden issue is also in Tibet as an arguement so it is a problem in Buddhism & has led to the isolation of the NKT. So I am wanting to ask that that particular issue isnt included. It always cloudies & complicates the issue. Its not because of the deity we follow that people are labeling the NKT a cult. Its because people felt mistreated or that they didnt have freedom to do things.

I hope you will all help me with this & make a clear concise presentation of what you are trying to say. The ideal would be a list of faults eg 1-20 & then a breakdown of each if you wish.


2nd message

Whilst reading these sites Ive seen a lot of suffering people & horrible stories about leaving sects cults groups. I feel like there is something going on with people & religion, especially new religious movements. This is another topic I cant grasp & part of my own spiritual path. Im getting feelings that something is needed that I cant find online. What Im talking about is there is a lot of listing of religious misconducts manipulation brainwashing abuse of power etc that is common to all groups. Ie there is a common theme. Similar mistakes & bad behaviour. Im trying to identify this pattern. if anyone wants to comment on this & anything else Ive said & you can message me here feel free.

What Im feeling is needed is again a brief clearly written document, probably academic (hence my own incapablity). This document would be able to be used by all religious groups sects & sent to cults. It would say a basic summary of what is good religion or good ethics (again my english fails me!)

For example:

do not take peoples lifelong savings
do not make people feel like they cant be themselves
do not pressure people to convert
do not let people work long hours for no pay
do not let people behave fanatically
do not let people neglect their health & nutrition
do not damage peoples lives & spiritual opportunities via sex (badly worded, this would be pedos, monks, orgy gurus, adultery)
do not force and pressure people to do things they dont want
do not force pressure people to hide info
let people express & be themselves
let people do things in their own time
do not suppress initiative
allow people to make their OWN decisions
do not disrespect the non believers- without their hard work you wouldnt be able to do you spiritual activities

Us whether NKT or ex NKT most of us are still Mahayana. And I think this is a good idea for this forum. Some of us were mistreated, others have seen various group dynamics. I think we could help people with this. Once this document is made all the groups could forward it & the religions doing these things could have a clear presentation of what pople feel they are doing wrong. Because as I say I myself am not able to find a summary of what is the essential point about when religion in general & the extremes that are common to most groups that go wrong. I think a document like this is presenting a solution & is constructive. if it can be universally applied to all the cults then this might help a lot of people. What do you think?

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