Dalai Lama vs Religious Freedom

Some of you might know I’ve an active interest in Buddhism. It’s worth knowing a few things such as commented here. I’ll quote big chunks, because he’s more eloquent than me on this subject! I feel the need to put this out there because the western media aren’t really covering the issue in any sufficient detail—and as with any subject you might know enough about, the media do a poor job in covering things well.

So why are Buddhists demonstrating against the Dalai Lama? Because, over the past decade, the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan Government in exile have been spearheading a drive to persuade Tibetans, and the wider Tibetan Buddhist community, to stop their involvement in the practice of a particular Buddhist deity called Dorje Shugden.

Now, the word ‘deity’ in Buddhism means the same as ‘buddha’; Dorje Shugden has historically been viewed as an enlightened being, on the same level as the buddha who taught in ancient India.

Many high Lamas in Tibet praised the practice of Dorje Shudgen; these Lamas included someone called Trijang Rinpoche, one of the current Dalai Lama’s tutors (now deceased). It’s safe to say that until recently, the practice has been revered and respected by generations of Buddhists, and has done no harm to anyone.

Despite all this though, the Dalai Lama is encouraging Tibetans to abandon the practice on the grounds that it harms the cause of Tibetan freedom, and is ’spirit worship’. He has not revealed evidence for these claims, despite repeated requests from Buddhist practitioners who are concerned about the mounting persecution and violence that’s happening as a result of the Dalai Lama’s efforts to destroy the practice. This persecution includes the refusal to grant ID cards to Tibetans who will not give up the practice, refusal to admit the children of Dorje Shugden practitioners to schools in the exiled Tibetan community, and death threats against those who continue with the practice.

There’s a campaign worth being aware of at the Western Shugden Society and videos like the one below showing some of the real situation faced by many Buddhist practitioners. Stay with it, and there are some more you can follow on this series on YouTube. Particularly moving is the second part.


By Mark Newton

Born in 1981, live in the UK. I write about strange things.

2 replies on “Dalai Lama vs Religious Freedom”

Thank you for showing human feelings.

The press and politicians and celebrities seem to think that to show a charismatic smile and utter nice words to please everybody justifies any actions.

Anyway, the victims of the Dalai Lama mostly are Tibetans, but they are not the correct Tibetans, the ones from Shangrila, the dream land of our fathers, they are just Tibetans in exile, nothing interesting.

So it’s ok that the Dalai Lama ostracizes them, puts them to the torment of being hated by their fellow Tibetans, because the he declared in 1996 that their prayers to the Buddha of Wisdom, DorjeShugden, harms the health of the Dalai Lama and the cause of Tibet.

The suffering of these people breaks the heart of decent human beings. Not the hearts of the members of the biggest cult of our times, the cult of the Dalai Lama.
For these people it doesn’t matter the suffering of the Dorje Shugden practitioners. If the Dalai Lama says they are bad, then their suffering is deserved.

So much for the precious values of our Western culture, the respect of human rights, that took us centuries to recognize and establish.

Nowadays, the Dalai Lama is spreading in the Western Dharma Centers the “taking of the oath”, where people swear two things: that they don’t worship Dorje Shugden and they do not have nor are never going to have any relationship with the practitioners.

I have personally seen friends break apart from friends, old students abandon their teachers … only because of the “suggestions” of the Dalai Lama. The Dalai Lama who dares say that he wants to protect Buddhism.

These are dark times for Dharma and also for just plain truth and human decency. May true Buddhas manifest again among us to teach us great compassion, not niceties that sound pleasant to large audiences.

May all beings be happy and reach true liberation.

Comments are closed.