Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by gb9810 » Tue Aug 15, 2017 7:01 am

ah but you are only looking at the first little part where he had assumed "if the teacher is genuine, if proper training/warning has been given, if whatever whatever is present,...etc." Basically, IF we were talking about Tilo and Naro..

and if you keep reading, I think he pretty clearly stated that he doesn't think these conditionalities have been met with Sogyal or Rigpa, i.e. we are NOT talking about the ideal situation, so most of the ideals regarding guru-disciples don't apply here.

He also talked about why he didn't warn students of SL's lack of credentials, but thought that decision may have been a mistake ...etc. (apologies for not quoting the article more precisely but only loosely based on memory. I am a slow reader and going through it once was already quite taxing! But based on memory, especially the later half was really rather sympathetic to the students, including lamenting why help from within the tradition didn't appear sooner (due to cultural habits, trying avoid trouble...etc. which he then challenged as unhelpful.. I am paraphrasing..)


smcj wrote:
I think he IS affirming, if not very explicitly, that the students did the right thing.. and in his own convoluted way (his style?) denouncing Sogyal.
I don't think so.
DJKR wrote:If an impure perception – such as criticism of one’s guru – is made deliberately and consciously, and if it then goes on to become a well-organized, choreographed public discussion with no room for amendment or correction, it constitutes a total breakage of samaya.
Later he continues...
It’s a big mistake to speculate about the possibility of continuing to analyze and criticize the guru after having received a major initiation – actually it’s totally wrong. We cannot modify Vajrayana’s fundamental view just because it doesn’t suit the minds of a few liberal, puritanical, Abrahamic, or individualistic activists.

If you find this view doesn’t suit you, but you still want to follow the Buddha’s path, you can always try the Mahayana and Sravakayana paths instead.
I think that this is why Chime R. (Karma Kagyu/U.K.) has been in the West for 50 years and never once given an initiation.

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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by Grigoris » Tue Aug 15, 2017 8:27 am

gb9810 wrote:my post was about the type of reasoning I see often, not you personally, so please calm down.
I am not taking it personally and I am calm. You responded directly to my post so, excuse me, for answering to your response. :shrug:
"If you didn't see it with your own eyes, how can you say he did XYZ?!" "Oh you are so naive as to believe in all that fake news...there is no REAL evidence!" "Were you there when he "supposedly" groped her?! no? then how could you believe it?!"
More straw men. I said: that I do not have all the facts, thus I cannot pass judgement. Now, it may help your argument to misinterpret what I say, but that only proves how flimsy your argument is.
Basically, one doggedly bites onto one's prior, rejects info that disagrees with it, while feeding one's own confirmation bias...
I have neither a confirmation nor a negation bias, again this is another child of your fantasy.
Everyone is untitled to their own opinions, as well as whatever framework they choose to form them.
They are entitled to it, doesn't make it valid though. Sure, people are entitled to invalid opinions too, but they cannot promote them as truth.
But one IS taking a stand when one chooses to dismiss the relevance of certain evidence, or puts the requirement at the level of "I have to see things with my own eyes" before I change my mind or form an opinion.
More straw men BS. I did not dismiss the relevance of any evidence, I am waiting for more evidence before passing final judgement. Foot in mouth disease tends to be quite prevalent on social media, luckily I suffered some bouts of it in the past and this has helped inoculate me somewhat.
that was my point.
Your point is based on some really flimsy logic, mainly it is based on misconceptions of what others (me, in the particular case) are saying.

AND, before you start whining (again): You responded to my post (again), so yes, I feel obliged (again) to answer to what you are saying (again).

If you want to talk "in general", then it would be best that you did not quote me.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
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"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by gb9810 » Tue Aug 15, 2017 8:41 am

I didn't think I was "whining" but obvious this discussion has proven unconstructive for all involved.

My apology for having wasted your time in having to respond; I think we both agree that we can just let it drop.
Grigoris wrote:
gb9810 wrote:my post was about the type of reasoning I see often, not you personally, so please calm down.
I am not taking it personally and I am calm. You responded directly to my post so, excuse me, for answering to your response. :shrug:
"If you didn't see it with your own eyes, how can you say he did XYZ?!" "Oh you are so naive as to believe in all that fake news...there is no REAL evidence!" "Were you there when he "supposedly" groped her?! no? then how could you believe it?!"
More straw men. I said: that I do not have all the facts, thus I cannot pass judgement. Now, it may help your argument to misinterpret what I say, but that only proves how flimsy your argument is.
Basically, one doggedly bites onto one's prior, rejects info that disagrees with it, while feeding one's own confirmation bias...
I have neither a confirmation nor a negation bias, again this is another child of your fantasy.
Everyone is untitled to their own opinions, as well as whatever framework they choose to form them.
They are entitled to it, doesn't make it valid though. Sure, people are entitled to invalid opinions too, but they cannot promote them as truth.
But one IS taking a stand when one chooses to dismiss the relevance of certain evidence, or puts the requirement at the level of "I have to see things with my own eyes" before I change my mind or form an opinion.
More straw men BS. I did not dismiss the relevance of any evidence, I am waiting for more evidence before passing final judgement. Foot in mouth disease tends to be quite prevalent on social media, luckily I suffered some bouts of it in the past and this has helped inoculate me somewhat.
that was my point.
Your point is based on some really flimsy logic, mainly it is based on misconceptions of what others (me, in the particular case) are saying.

AND, before you start whining (again): You responded to my post (again), so yes, I feel obliged (again) to answer to what you are saying (again).

If you want to talk "in general", then it would be best that you did not quote me.

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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by Stewart » Tue Aug 15, 2017 9:06 am

smcj wrote:
I think he IS affirming, if not very explicitly, that the students did the right thing.. and in his own convoluted way (his style?) denouncing Sogyal.
I don't think so.
DJKR wrote:If an impure perception – such as criticism of one’s guru – is made deliberately and consciously, and if it then goes on to become a well-organized, choreographed public discussion with no room for amendment or correction, it constitutes a total breakage of samaya.
Later he continues...
It’s a big mistake to speculate about the possibility of continuing to analyze and criticize the guru after having received a major initiation – actually it’s totally wrong. We cannot modify Vajrayana’s fundamental view just because it doesn’t suit the minds of a few liberal, puritanical, Abrahamic, or individualistic activists.

If you find this view doesn’t suit you, but you still want to follow the Buddha’s path, you can always try the Mahayana and Sravakayana paths instead.
I think that this is why Chime R. (Karma Kagyu/U.K.) has been in the West for 50 years and never once given an initiation. It's not that he can't, he won't.
Chime Rinpoche gave the Konchog Chidu Empowerment in May, I'm sure there have been others too, check the Marpa House Facebook page.
s.

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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by smcj » Tue Aug 15, 2017 9:28 am

Chime Rinpoche gave the Konchog Chidu Empowerment in May, I'm sure there have been others too, check the Marpa House Facebook page.
I was there in April. The only initiation scheduled was a Vajrakilaya to be given by a Sakya Lama. I don't do FB otherwise I'd check as you said.
I support Mingyur R and HHDL in their positions against Lama abuse.

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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by Adamantine » Tue Aug 15, 2017 9:30 am

Malcolm wrote: In short, people should consult the Rigpa Rangshar's chapter on samaya and cease laying blame on blameless students who have the misfortune of choosing mad guides.
Is there an existing English rendition of this chapter? If not, could you give a summary and at least a couple of relevant lines translated for us to consider? Otherwise it is simply not possible for non-lotsawas to consult with the text in a timely way regarding this issue. Thank you. :anjali:
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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by Lobsang Chojor » Tue Aug 15, 2017 9:52 am

smcj wrote:
Tibetans really don't get it.
HHDL gets it. He himself had to break samaya when he outlawed that one unmentionable Gelug practice. He had been initiated into it by one of his teachers.
I thought I've read that HHDL didn't get the empowerment, the night before he had a nightmare which he interpreted as a sign not up receive the empowerment.
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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by Stewart » Tue Aug 15, 2017 10:09 am

smcj wrote:
Chime Rinpoche gave the Konchog Chidu Empowerment in May, I'm sure there have been others too, check the Marpa House Facebook page.
I was there in April. The only initiation scheduled was a Vajrakilaya to be given by a Sakya Lama. I don't do FB otherwise I'd check as you said.
He gave it at Khen Hungtramgpa's place in Aldershot, large Nepalese community. Think it was May the 10th. There are photos on Facebook, From their site;
.Please attend tomorrow for Konchog Chidue Empowerment (Unification of All the Supreme jewels) from Rada Chime Rinpoche, Rinpoche is the disciple of the great Jamgon Kongtrul Palden Khyentse Oser the second, 11th Situ Padma Wangchog Gyalpo, 9th Sangye Nyenpa, Dilgo Khyentse Holiness, 16th Karmapa Rigpi Dorje, and one of the remaining student of the great Shechen Khenpo Gangshar Wangpo.
Last edited by Stewart on Tue Aug 15, 2017 10:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
s.

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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by Lingpupa » Tue Aug 15, 2017 10:10 am

smcj wrote:
Chime Rinpoche gave the Konchog Chidu Empowerment in May, I'm sure there have been others too, check the Marpa House Facebook page.
I was there in April. The only initiation scheduled was a Vajrakilaya to be given by a Sakya Lama. I don't do FB otherwise I'd check as you said.
Stewart is right. The Vajrakilaya was given at Marpa House. Chime Rinpoche gave Konchog Chidu at another place near that date. It wasn't widely publicised. If I understand it correctly it was primarily intended for the Nepalese community.

And why not? Buddha was born in Nepal! :smile:
All the best
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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by Lingpupa » Tue Aug 15, 2017 10:13 am

Malcolm wrote: Most of the piece was self-indulgent babble....
Thank you for that thoughtful post.
All the best
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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by narraboth » Tue Aug 15, 2017 10:30 am

Malcom said:

".... did not prepare his students properly, this automatically means he is an unqualified teacher and his students have no samaya with him at all, apart from as a Vajra brother. If Sogyal is in the wrong, it is axiomatic that his critical students are not in the wrong at all, from a samaya point of view, and thus this line is bullshit because they have no samaya with him.
...............
The reasons why we see so much broken samaya today is not the fault of students, it is the fault of too many unrealized teachers giving empowerments which they are not qualified to give in the first place. "

They are two contradictory statements. Does 'not preparing students properly' automatically make empowerment invalid? If yes, there is no 'so much broken samaya today'. If not, people in Rigpa who have received full empowerments from SR have samaya with SR.

You will need to draw a line on what do you mean for sufficiently preparing students and what is not, thus who is qualified and who is not. There are rules in tradition about the qualification of giving empowerment/ being vajra masters, I don't think 'preparing students properly' is one. 'Knowing how to prepare students properly' might be one; if the teacher did not do what they supposed to do, there're consequences, but that doesn't make students have 'no samaya' with him.

Not sure what the Rigpa Rangshar says, I will have a read if you can qoute the full tibetan title. But from the common three-vows commentaries, which translation are available, I don't see Malcom's definition in it. I also don't think a person needs to be ''realised" (to what degree??) to perform a valid empowerment ritual (pointing out teaching is another issue). At least not in Sakya's view from what I heard. We need to be extremely careful here. If I have chance to meet HHST again I will try to ask.

To push further, I have been in Rigpa centre limited time listening to other masters' teaching. I don't think the consequences of samaya breakage were not mentioned; I heard Kyabje Trulshik Rinpoche talked about it and it was translated, emphasized and repeated again. If it was mentioned too late or not I don't know. People were already there, bought tickets, paid for the meals and beds.... like almost every major event in other places. You can of course say it was too loose, but again, that doesn't make students free from samaya.

The only way I find to get around is, I don't think SR gave full empowerment often. Most of time he invited other lama to do so, or because it's me only go there when my own guru visiting. Actually, when did SR last time gave a full empowerment?? That makes a big difference on the guru-students relationship. Indeed, dzogchen pointing out teaching also counts, but I think that's a different requirement for qualification and that might actually more suit Malcom's definition.

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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by Adamantine » Tue Aug 15, 2017 10:39 am

Actually a few Rigpa students on DJKR's FB post thread
are speaking up that Sogyal Lakar did give warnings in advance re: samaya at retreats. But of course how consistent or often or if that was the case all along is hard to know from a few students testimony.
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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by Grigoris » Tue Aug 15, 2017 10:51 am

Malcolm wrote:Most of the piece was self-indulgent babble...
I don't think it was self-indulgent babble, I think it was an attempt to set the groundwork/basis for the ignorant amongst us, to prepare us for what he was trying to say. Just because you know this basis (being an Acharya and all) don't assume that the rest of us idiots do.

I do agree with you on the importance of the "green section", for me this was the most important and valuable part of what was said.

It is incredible how many people rush into Vajrayana without having even a basic knowledge of the Four Noble Truths, Dependent Origination, or the Bodhisattva path (Paramita), for example. Like flies to shit they are drawn in by the colour, noise and general pageantry of the empowerment, wanting to sprint when they have not even learned how to crawl. It is a recipe for disaster.

But what I tend to discern in all the blame slinging happening around here is that there is little to no sense of the role karma plays in this little (and it is a small and truly insignificant) spectacle.

In typical western fashion, whenever the notion of karma comes up, people's knee jerk reaction is to talk about shifting blame, facilitating abuse, etc... I guess this just goes to show how shitty we are as Buddhists if we have to turn to secular sociological, psychological and/or legalistic views in order to understand a situation.
Last edited by Grigoris on Tue Aug 15, 2017 11:38 am, edited 2 times in total.
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"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by Nemo » Tue Aug 15, 2017 11:28 am

"Rigpa has confirmed that Sogyal Rinpoche has stepped down, effective immediately, in this press release. Rigpa organizers wrote that the abuse accusations will be investigated by a third party. A new code of conduct and spiritual advisory group will be established for the sangha."
https://tricycle.org/trikedaily/sogyal- ... ned-rigpa/

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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by Tiago Simões » Tue Aug 15, 2017 11:35 am

Grigoris wrote:
Malcolm wrote:Most of the piece was self-indulgent babble...
I don't think it was self-indulgent babble, I think it was an attempt to set the groundwork/basis for the ignorant amongst us, to prepare us for what he was trying to say. Just because you know this basis (being an Acharya and all) don't assume that the rest of us idiots do.

I do agree with you on the importance of the "green section", for me this was the most important and valuable part of what was said.

It is incredible how many people rush into Vajrayana without having even knowing the Four Noble Truths or the Bodhisattva path (Paramita) for example. Like flies to shit they are drawn in by the colour, noise and general pageantry of the empowerment, wanting to sprint when they have not even learned how to crawl. It is a recipe for disaster.

But what I tend to discern in all the blame slinging happening around here is that there is little to no sense of the role karma plays in this little (and it is a small and truly insignificant) spectacle.

In typical western fashion, whenever the notion of karma comes up, people's knee jerk reaction is to talk about shifting blame, facilitating abuse, etc... I guess this just goes to show how shitty we are as Buddhists if we have to turn to secular sociological and/or legal views in order to understand a situation.
DJKR does mention the same thing:
DJKR wrote:Alas, karma does also seem to play a role in all this, doesn’t it? And now that I’ve brought up karma, I’m sure some of you will accuse me falling back on another cop-out. Nevertheless, the reality is that falling for glossy advertising and Tibetan paraphernalia, feeling inspired and touched by Tibetan exoticism and the endangered Tibetan species, and everything else that pops into our minds, all arise from the causes and conditions that are the essence of karma.
Then, the Licchavi Vimalakīrti spoke to the elder Śāriputra and the great disciples: “Reverends, eat of the food of the Tathāgata! It is ambrosia perfumed by the great compassion. But do not fix your minds in narrow-minded attitudes, lest you be unable to receive its gift.”

- Chapter 9, The Feast Brought by the Emanated Incarnation
The Noble Mahāyāna Sūtra “The Teaching of Vimalakīrti”

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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by Grigoris » Tue Aug 15, 2017 11:39 am

tiagolps wrote:DJKR does mention the same thing:
I know he does, I was talking about the participants in this thread... :smile:
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by TRC » Tue Aug 15, 2017 11:44 am

Grigoris wrote:
tiagolps wrote:DJKR does mention the same thing:
I know he does, I was talking about the participants in this thread... :smile:
I'll happily wear my karma of appropriate and due criticism as opposed to the results of trying to shut-down discussion.

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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by Tiago Simões » Tue Aug 15, 2017 11:52 am

Grigoris wrote:
tiagolps wrote:DJKR does mention the same thing:
I know he does, I was talking about the participants in this thread... :smile:
In the end our fear of Abrahamic judgement is always projected onto karma, as if both had the same basis, nobody likes to be "blamed". It's very easy to misunderstand karma when talking about abuser-abused situations.

For example I remember DJKR giving the example of how "it's the victims karma to have a human body at that time and place", of course, it's the abusers karma to feel uncontrollable sexual urges.
Then, the Licchavi Vimalakīrti spoke to the elder Śāriputra and the great disciples: “Reverends, eat of the food of the Tathāgata! It is ambrosia perfumed by the great compassion. But do not fix your minds in narrow-minded attitudes, lest you be unable to receive its gift.”

- Chapter 9, The Feast Brought by the Emanated Incarnation
The Noble Mahāyāna Sūtra “The Teaching of Vimalakīrti”

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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by buddhagirl » Tue Aug 15, 2017 12:09 pm

narraboth wrote:Malcom said:

".... did not prepare his students properly, this automatically means he is an unqualified teacher and his students have no samaya with him at all, apart from as a Vajra brother. If Sogyal is in the wrong, it is axiomatic that his critical students are not in the wrong at all, from a samaya point of view, and thus this line is bullshit because they have no samaya with him.
...............
The reasons why we see so much broken samaya today is not the fault of students, it is the fault of too many unrealized teachers giving empowerments which they are not qualified to give in the first place. "

They are two contradictory statements. Does 'not preparing students properly' automatically make empowerment invalid? If yes, there is no 'so much broken samaya today'. If not, people in Rigpa who have received full empowerments from SR have samaya with SR.

You will need to draw a line on what do you mean for sufficiently preparing students and what is not, thus who is qualified and who is not. There are rules in tradition about the qualification of giving empowerment/ being vajra masters, I don't think 'preparing students properly' is one. 'Knowing how to prepare students properly' might be one; if the teacher did not do what they supposed to do, there're consequences, but that doesn't make students have 'no samaya' with him.

Not sure what the Rigpa Rangshar says, I will have a read if you can qoute the full tibetan title. But from the common three-vows commentaries, which translation are available, I don't see Malcom's definition in it. I also don't think a person needs to be ''realised" (to what degree??) to perform a valid empowerment ritual (pointing out teaching is another issue). At least not in Sakya's view from what I heard. We need to be extremely careful here. If I have chance to meet HHST again I will try to ask.

To push further, I have been in Rigpa centre limited time listening to other masters' teaching. I don't think the consequences of samaya breakage were not mentioned; I heard Kyabje Trulshik Rinpoche talked about it and it was translated, emphasized and repeated again. If it was mentioned too late or not I don't know. People were already there, bought tickets, paid for the meals and beds.... like almost every major event in other places. You can of course say it was too loose, but again, that doesn't make students free from samaya.

The only way I find to get around is, I don't think SR gave full empowerment often. Most of time he invited other lama to do so, or because it's me only go there when my own guru visiting. Actually, when did SR last time gave a full empowerment?? That makes a big difference on the guru-students relationship. Indeed, dzogchen pointing out teaching also counts, but I think that's a different requirement for qualification and that might actually more suit Malcom's definition.
I've always understood samaya to have a broader context than just relating to empowerments. It's the bond between teacher and student. What if you have a teacher who rarely, or never, gives empowerments? If you've been a disciple over time and have cultivated faith, developed trust, abided by their instructions etc then you still have samaya with that teacher.

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Re: Very sad news: Letter to Sogyal Rinpoche / Abuse allegations

Post by smcj » Tue Aug 15, 2017 12:12 pm

Chime Rinpoche gave Konchog Chidu at another place near that date. It wasn't widely publicised. If I understand it correctly it was primarily intended for the Nepalese community.
Thanks.
I support Mingyur R and HHDL in their positions against Lama abuse.

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