Posts Tagged 'cult'

The Origins of the ‘Cult of Shugden’ Smear

The second in a series of articles about the history of the ‘cult’ smear of the New Kadampa Tradition was posted on the New Kadampa Truth blog this evening. The history of the New Kadampa Tradition’s ‘cult’ smear, Part 2 reveals the origins of the smear ‘cult of Shugden’. The smear was first used by Andrew Brown in his article “Battle of the Buddhists” which appeared in The Independent (15 July 1996). The label ‘cult’ was then used by the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan Government in Exile as a weapon to try to destroy the reputation of Geshe Kelsang Gyatso and the New Kadampa Tradition.

“Oh no, am I in a cult?!”

The New Kadampa Truth blog has rolled out the first in a series of articles about the New Kadampa Tradition being labeled as a cult by supporters of the Dalai Lama. The ‘cult’ smear has probably been the most damaging smear to the reputation of the NKT even though there is no actual basis to support it. It’s wonderful that this series of articles is being published by the New Kadampa Truth team. May the truth prevail!

A quote from the article: The history of the New Kadampa Tradition’s ‘cult’ smear

Being accused of being a cult by someone who dislikes you is similar to being asked if you are still beating your wife every night. No matter what is said or not said in defence, the insinuation remains that you beat your wife. For simply addressing this topic, the NKT may be accused by the same detractors of being defensive (”they wouldn’t need to defend themselves if they weren’t in fact a cult!”); but we will take that risk. From the faultfinders’ point of view, we’re damned if we defend ourselves and damned if we don’t. Why not just ignore them? Because people surfing the Internet sometimes encounter the allegation that the NKT is a cult and then assume that the person who said this somehow knows something that they do not. They may then believe this and either stay away from the NKT or, if they are already in the NKT, anxiously ask themselves, “Oh no, am I in a cult?!”

The Dalai Lama’s Lies about Dorje Shugden

Below is the beginning of an article posted on the Wisdom Buddha Dorje Shugden Blog today titled ‘The Cult of Dorje Shugden or the Cult of the Dalai Lama’

The Dalai Lama’s big lie

“In an interview with NEWSWEEK earlier this month, the Dalai Lama expressed his worries about the Dorje Shugden. “That cult is actually destroying the freedom of religious thought,” he said.”- Newsweek April 1997

“The problem with Dolgyal practice is that it presents the spirit Dolgyal (Shugden) as a Dharma protector and what’s more tends to promote the spirit as more important than the Buddha himself. If this trend goes unchecked, and innocent people become seduced by cult-like practices of this kind.” – The Dalai Lama’s Advice Concerning Dolgyal (Shugden), June 2008

This shows that in ten years, nothing has changed. The Dalai Lama is consistently using this derogatory term in relation to Dorje Shugden practice and practitioners, throwing mud that he hopes will stick so that Buddhists who have faith in him will also share this view. He uses the term ‘cult’ to dismiss the practice and humiliate those who practise it, but — as with most of the Dalai Lama’s pronouncements – few of his fervent followers have checked to see if there is truth in what he is saying.

Read the full article: ‘The Cult of Dorje Shugden or the Cult of the Dalai Lama’

Kadampa Bloggers

For the last 10 years or so, it seems like it has mainly been people who are opposed to the NKT writing about their experiences on the internet. Why is this? My opinion is that most people who are involved in the NKT don’t have a whole lot of time for this kind of thing. Most Kadampas do volunteer work for their Center, have part time or full time jobs, study on the NKT study programs and have daily meditations and pujas that they do. Which translates into, not a lot of free time, for blogging and such.

However, I don’t think there is a single Kadampa who isn’t tired of all the lies that get spread about our Spiritual Guide and Tradition on the internet. They say we’re a cult or an NRM (whatever that is). They say we’re murderers, chinese spies, and spirit worshippers. They say our Spiritual Guide isn’t a real Geshe, because he doesn’t have the Dalai Lama’s stamp of approval.

There have also been some people who never really got their practice off the ground. Then left the NKT, and now share their sad interpretation of the NKT in blog posts and such.

The good news is, the future is looking brighter. There are now several Kadampas who are sincere practitioners who are now blogging about their experiences so that outsiders can have a look at how people with positive minds experience the NKT.

Here’s the blogs that I’ve recently come across: Content NKTer, Happy New Kadampa, Making My Life Meaningful, New Kadampa Buddhist, and Wisdom and Bliss