Yes. I read that closed webcasts were in use - by CHNN? I was really referring to others who have actually put entire empowerments on Youtube, put up sites with pdf files of HYT empowerments and commentaries. I hope Dzogchen has less of this.Dechen Norbu wrote:One almost wouldn't notice that, but when you wroteI realized that you were somehow assuming that empowerments were given via webcast. Such is not the case.However, I'm not OK with the idea that someone can receive material which was never intended for them and may consequently either be misled or may delude themselves into believing that they are fully equipped for practices, when in fact they are not. Worse, they could set themsleves up to teach others.
There are also closed webcasts and retreats where you need to ask permission to the Lama to assist before they start.
Direct transmission can always be attempted with no harm whatsoever. Of course there are those who may think they got it when they didn't, don't check it, and remain deluded for years, but that's the student's fault.
If someone doesn't get direct transmission, he shouldn't consider it some sort of mystery. Such person should try to identify why and deal with it in appropriate manner. It's always due to a deficient preparation in relation to one's own obstacles. These are what we need to find out and overcome with correct practice. We shouldn't expect transmission to happen magically if we do absolutely nothing on our side. We must check our condition. When in doubt about why it isn't happening in spite of we doing our best in terms of preparation for some time, we should move our asses and go ask. Becoming stressed about it only makes things worse.
I think your comments about praparation are valid in the contexts I am used to (HYT Gelugpa) as well, and may be so across Vajrayana. It's wonderful if you are close to your Lama and can be guided, and it saddens me to see so many who may only have encountered Buddhism a few week before turning up to HYT empowerments in their thousands and taking on practice commitments, Tantric Vows etc. when they have barely started their path. In the context of the thread it's a bit like treating a live guru as a stage act or treating an internet experience like a TV show - a passive experience where the 'performance' is the focus.