Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

dzoki
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Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by dzoki » Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:08 pm

This here is my personal and open reaction (sort of open letter) to latest series of messages sent out by Ole Nydahl to his Diamondway centers. In particular I will present below quoted message to his Czech followers as an example and give some context to it, since other of his recent letters are similar in nature. So here it goes (Ole's letter is quoted in full here, though interrupted with my commentary) :
Dearest dharma students and friends in the Czech Republic,

The issue of the total functioning of our Karma Kagyü Diamond Way Buddhist centers is so essential that it is important to put it into writing.
Here again what I already stated in Prague a few days ago.
Every lineage and organization within a lineage, should clarify such issues for themselves and hold and increase the blessing given by their founders, in our case that means the great 16th Karmapa.
The situation upon which "the need" for this letter arose is following: Last year some students of Ole unbeknowst to Ole invited to his center Chogyal Rinpoche to give a teaching course dealing according to my information primarily with transmission of Rechungpa´s system of Vajrayogini and related practices of tsa-lung-thigle.
Here, the main points:
1. We are a Diamond Way center, with a clear practice and transmission given by the 16th Karmapa to Hannah and myself. He did not want us to mix or try to improve such teachings, activities and transmissions with other fine lineages, or with other Karma Kagyü organizations and groups. Instead, in all such cases he wanted us to keep working with the teachings he gave us, preserve the methods he offered for our practices and avoid time-absorbing discussions with no clear view.
Although I have no knowledge of conversations that Ole and Hannah might have had with 16. Karmapa, it comes across as strange that Karmapa would want Western students of Karma Kagyu to only receive watered down diluted instruction on basic teachings and practices as is regularly given in Diamond Way centers, especially since Diamond Way Buddhism as independent organisation was founded by Ole long time after 16th Karmapa´s passing (sometime in 1990's).
Last edited by dzoki on Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by Grigoris » Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:15 pm

Where is the rest of the letter? Or, is that it?
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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by dzoki » Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:43 pm

2. We don’t work with or invite different teachers to our centers, only those who are holding the transmission of the Karma Kagyü lineage and are therefore directly invited by myself.
The wording here should be in reverse here :D : Only those who are invited directly by myself and are therefore holding the transmission of Karma Kagyu lineage. Why? Because as I said before his students invited Chogyal Rinpoche to teach, yet, he was found to be unfit as a holder of Karma Kagyu lineage by Ole. Similar episode happened in 2016 when Ole's students invited Dupseng Rinpoche to teach in Diamond Way center Benalmadena, Spain. Again Dupseng Rinpoche, a direct student of number of Karma Kagyu Rinpoche's and authorized teacher was found as un-suitable by Ole. It seems now that it is Ole who decides, who is a holder of transmission of Karma Kagyu and who is not. While he of course paints himself as one. I think he has no clue what it even means to be a holder of transmission.
3. We do not pay our friends and Diamond Way teachers for their Dharma activity in our centers and on our behalf.

4. If you already have chosen a practice and transmission like ours, it is not advisable to learn from other lamas or teachers. It frequently takes away the one-pointed focus of body, speech and mind, and is therefore not useful for reaching our goal. This can be a difficult point to many but is also the desisve factor for the deepest and fastest human growth. I know this may not be popular with some 'broad minds“, but it is the heart of the useful and necessary pieces of advice given by our Karma Kagyü teachers. You will see this point repeated in all authentic teachings and it is also proven through my own experience of over forty years. You will also find the same protective teaching in all other lineages. Nobody can neither function nor teach with material which uses different words for similar information or similar words for different situations.
Now this is complete BS. I have received Karma Kagyu teaching from number of teachers - namely on lojong, ngondro, mahamudra and yidam practice, but never have I heard from any of them that I should not study with other teacher or receive other teachings, nor have I read this in any of Karma Kagyu texts hat I have read. I thought the core of Karma Kagyu teaching is to develop renunciation towards samsara and eight worldly dharmas and motivated by bodhicitta to devote oneself to meditation, not some sectarian non-sense. Not only that he drags other Karma Kagyu teachers into his own sectarian views as if they agreed with it and paints other lineages as equally sectarian as his own personal cult group.
So please do not develop either narrow feelings or doubts through these necessary points. They have been handled down from one realized and skilful teacher to another over centuries and remain as effective and meaningful as ever.

May we benefit countless beings with the blessing of our lineage and through the timeless methods passed on by our great Karma Kagyü masters.

Best wishes and may this understanding be useful to you.

Yours, Lama Ole
To conclude here is my message to Ole, I hope it gets to him, somehow:

Dear Ole,

please come out clean about the reasons for your sectarian views. The reason why you brainwash your students like this is solely for the purpose of keeping a control over your flock of sheep. It is plain and obvious now. If you come into the open with your motivations it will make things easier for both you and your students. They will be able to make choice whether to follow your cult or authentic Dharma teaching. Those who will stay will stay out of personal admiration for you and you will not have to control them by inducing a fear in them that they might commit some Dharma crime by following some other teacher. It will also save you the energy that you waste on writing messages such as this one and you will not have to smear the name of Karmapa with your own desires. Sincerely yours, a former student from long time ago.
Last edited by dzoki on Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by dzoki » Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:43 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:15 pm
Where is the rest of the letter? Or, is that it?
Sorry my internet has some issues, so the post got cut in half.

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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by Mantrik » Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:58 pm

I am really familiar with such edicts from a different cult.
Next, he may insist that whilst of course anyone is free to attend teachings by others and read other books, they must leave his organisation if they do.
Seeing this, I would advise his followers to think deeply - and then leave, and establish their centres independent of DW.

I do think it is odd for centres to invite Lamas without his approval, however. At the least, pretty rude.
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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by dzoki » Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:07 pm

Mantrik wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:58 pm
I do think it is odd for centres to invite Lamas without his approval, however. At the least, pretty rude.
It might seem as rude but both Dupseng Rinpoche and Chogyal Rinpoche are Karma Kagyu teachers, followers of same Karmapa candidate as Ole. Ole claims that his organization is a part of Karma Kagyu lineage, there is absolutely no problem in other Karma Kagyu centers if they invite various Karma Kagyu teachers on their own. So it looks like Ole's organization is part of Karma Kagyu only on the surface, while in reality it is Ole's own personal group, where he has a higher standing than even Karmapa.

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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by philji » Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:24 pm

This has a Nyingma origin but i think is relevant here.
“One of the more extraordinary features among the infinite
qualities of the great tertön Dilgo Khyentse, whose learning,
discipline, and nobility, as well as his teaching, debate, and
composition, were matchless, was that he was extremely
concerned about all the lineages of Tibetan Buddhism—he
received teachings from countless masters of all four schools and
then spread them. In general the whole day, whether he was
having a meal or not, he was always ready to give whoever
came to see him—lamas, students, high or low, from whatever
lineage or tradition—whatever teachings they needed right that
moment.
Most lamas are only concerned with their own tradition and
lineage, but Khyentse Rinpoche was quite the opposite. He was
truly nonsectarian. He had true pure vision toward all the
lineages of the entire doctrine. Just as Khyentse Wangpo had
about one hundred different learned and accomplished teachers,
Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche too had a vast number of teachers.
Very often, though he would already have received certain
empowerments and transmissions according to several lineages,
if he would meet someone with the same transmission but
through another lineage, he wanted to receive it again."
Tsikey Chokling Rinpoche - in Brilliant Moon The Autobiography of Dilgo Khyentse pg 262-3 Shambhala”

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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by philji » Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:26 pm

dzoki wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:07 pm
Mantrik wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:58 pm
I do think it is odd for centres to invite Lamas without his approval, however. At the least, pretty rude.
It might seem as rude but both Dupseng Rinpoche and Chogyal Rinpoche are Karma Kagyu teachers, followers of same Karmapa candidate as Ole. Ole claims that his organization is a part of Karma Kagyu lineage, there is absolutely no problem in other Karma Kagyu centers if they invite various Karma Kagyu teachers on their own. So it looks like Ole's organization is part of Karma Kagyu only on the surface, while in reality it is Ole's own personal group, where he has a higher standing than even Karmapa.
Not so sure..... The two kagyu centres that I am familiar with would not invite a teacher without the permission and go ahead of the abbot or lama. I think this is protocol.

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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by dzoki » Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:39 pm

philji wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:26 pm
dzoki wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:07 pm
Mantrik wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 1:58 pm
I do think it is odd for centres to invite Lamas without his approval, however. At the least, pretty rude.
It might seem as rude but both Dupseng Rinpoche and Chogyal Rinpoche are Karma Kagyu teachers, followers of same Karmapa candidate as Ole. Ole claims that his organization is a part of Karma Kagyu lineage, there is absolutely no problem in other Karma Kagyu centers if they invite various Karma Kagyu teachers on their own. So it looks like Ole's organization is part of Karma Kagyu only on the surface, while in reality it is Ole's own personal group, where he has a higher standing than even Karmapa.
Not so sure..... The two kagyu centres that I am familiar with would not invite a teacher without the permission and go ahead of the abbot or lama. I think this is protocol.
If it is a monastery that would be probably othervise. I am familiar with Dhagpo Kagyu Sangha local centers and with Bodhipath centers, in both of those there was no problem to invite any Karma Kagyu teacher (of the same Karma Kagyu branch), of course in the case of some highranking Rinpoches, this had to be done in cooperation with other centers - mostly due to travel expenses and other organisational matters. In any case there was certainly no prohibition of inviting other teachers, quite the oposite, local sanghas were encouraged to invite various teachers.

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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by dzoki » Thu Jan 04, 2018 2:56 pm

To add to my point, what I see as biggest problem in all this is that:

1. Ole prohibits his students to study with teachers other then selected by him for specific purposes = this is equal to limiting and manipulating your own students and making them a flock of dependant followers, instead of practitioners on the path of liberation. Moreover he posits that this is in accordance to Dharma teaching, which it is not.

2. Once his students invite a teacher and want to receive teachings other than what Ole allows, they are shamed and put into their place by a letter such as this one.

3. Ole does not want his students to receive Dharma apart from cherrypicked parts that he views as "useful". He even discourages his students to meet those teachers that he deemed as suitable in centers other than his, and in this way he again prevents them from receiving Dharma.

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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by gyamtsotrinle » Thu Jan 04, 2018 5:35 pm

Again old good stuff - Ole Nydahl. Dzoki, I suppose that you also sign under this letter to lama Ole.
To be correct, I do not belong to the mandala of Diamond way. But, I very much appreciate Ole´s great contribution spreading of BuddhaDharma. I know that he is not only him who is in this role, also there is Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, Namkhai Norbu RInppoche, and some others, but here we are talking about lama Ole. There is a lot of people who are not already his disciples, some his previous disciples even became lamas. I know some of them, and they feel gratefulnes to him, for the refuge, mahamudra teachings and so on. Nobody of them not going against Ole, or speak badly (at least not publicly,) and of course there are a lot of his previous disciples who do not have nice ideas about him, not mention gratefulness. Even you Dzoki, I have remember you from e-sangha how you protect him and praise. As I am understood in Vadzrayana the gratefulness is very important, especially if you are not anymore disciple of some guru.
yes, I am aware that in this age almost every lama do some things which are not completely perfect. But we are also not perfect disicples.
I am sorry if this is out off topic.
Gyamtso

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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by Vasana » Thu Jan 04, 2018 5:48 pm

I doubt the proportion of followers who follow Ole's advice to refrain from other teachers and teachings is very high but I wouldn't know. Also, without knowing what the 16th Karmapa actually told them makes it all difficult to judge. Surely it would make sense to ask him to provide citations to back up his claims on individual teachers and then people can compare that with the life examples and teachings from non-sectarian masters of the recent past.
'When alone, watch your mind. When with others, watch your speech'- Old Kadampa saying.

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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by dzoki » Thu Jan 04, 2018 6:03 pm

gyamtsotrinle wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 5:35 pm
Again old good stuff - Ole Nydahl. Dzoki, I suppose that you also sign under this letter to lama Ole.
To be correct, I do not belong to the mandala of Diamond way. But, I very much appreciate Ole´s great contribution spreading of BuddhaDharma. I know that he is not only him who is in this role, also there is Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, Namkhai Norbu RInppoche, and some others, but here we are talking about lama Ole. There is a lot of people who are not already his disciples, some his previous disciples even became lamas. I know some of them, and they feel gratefulnes to him, for the refuge, mahamudra teachings and so on. Nobody of them not going against Ole, or speak badly (at least not publicly,) and of course there are a lot of his previous disciples who do not have nice ideas about him, not mention gratefulness. Even you Dzoki, I have remember you from e-sangha how you protect him and praise. As I am understood in Vadzrayana the gratefulness is very important, especially if you are not anymore disciple of some guru.
yes, I am aware that in this age almost every lama do some things which are not completely perfect. But we are also not perfect disicples.
I am sorry if this is out off topic.
Gyamtso
Ole Nydahl is not a guru in vajrayana sense, a guru in vajrayana sense is someone who gives an actual empowerment, which Ole has never done. More than that he is spreading misconceptions about vajrayana teaching and as somebody else (Trungpa himself I think) put it, he is perverting the teaching of Karmapa. That is a big problem for the Dharma in the West.

I think you must have confused me with somebody else, since I was one of the people who were quite outspoken about Ole's shortcomings during e-sangha times. And again Ole's status as a teacher in Dharma organization does not exclude him from being rightly criticized, especially when he does something that is entirely contrary to Dharma. Thankfulness is an important aspect of faith in teacher, but it springs from attainment of understanding and freedom due to the instruction and blessings from the teacher - not from misconseptions, limitations and confusion induced by a teacher. In other words if someone gives you a harmful present, there is nothing to be thankful for.

I would completely ignore his usual sectarian tirades, which he repeats from time to time, if it were not for the ammount of such messages that he recently sent out to his sanghas. The letter that I posted here, is just one of several such instructions. He goes into same vein in his New Year's letter and other shorter messages.
Last edited by dzoki on Thu Jan 04, 2018 6:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by dzoki » Thu Jan 04, 2018 6:14 pm

Vasana wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 5:48 pm
I doubt the proportion of followers who follow Ole's advice to refrain from other teachers and teachings is very high but I wouldn't know. Also, without knowing what the 16th Karmapa actually told them makes it all difficult to judge. Surely it would make sense to ask him to provide citations to back up his claims on individual teachers and then people can compare that with the life examples and teachings from non-sectarian masters of the recent past.
As someone who has friends within Diamondway organization, I can tell you that the number of people who are literally afraid of attending teachings of other teachers is quite high. I remember that when Beru Khyentse Rinpoche was in Vienna more than two years ago, there were only five people from Ole's group among those present and none of them were from Austria or Slovakia. One of them told me that she came there despite being warned by the Diamondway organization that she should not attend. People who chose to ignore such warnings are often shamed within the group for going against lama and being confused.

It would absolutely make sense to ask Ole to provide concrete citations whether by 16th Karmapa, Kalu Rinpoche, 17th Karmapa or his other teachers to support his claims, but no-one ever did, or at least not boldly and publicly. This situation is comparable to Trump in the USA, when he says: "People say...or...Everybody says...," when in fact it is only him who says this.

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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by Grigoris » Thu Jan 04, 2018 6:21 pm

I seriously doubt he will read what you wrote and even if he does it is highly unlikely that he will give a shit or bother replying to you. So why waste your time and energy?
"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: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by dzoki » Thu Jan 04, 2018 6:40 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 6:21 pm
I seriously doubt he will read what you wrote and even if he does it is highly unlikely that h will give a shit or bother replying to you. So why waste your time and energy?
Someone from his PR team will read it, I assure you, as they do read online info about Ole, so it might get to him. Of course he most likely won't give a damn about a nobody like me, but some of his students might reflect on these things. And what I would especially like them to think about is that nobody should be afraid to receive Dharma and that it is not a crime nor is it in any sense against Dharma to study with genuine Dharma teachers.

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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by Simon E. » Thu Jan 04, 2018 7:10 pm

dzoki wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 6:14 pm
Vasana wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 5:48 pm
I doubt the proportion of followers who follow Ole's advice to refrain from other teachers and teachings is very high but I wouldn't know. Also, without knowing what the 16th Karmapa actually told them makes it all difficult to judge. Surely it would make sense to ask him to provide citations to back up his claims on individual teachers and then people can compare that with the life examples and teachings from non-sectarian masters of the recent past.
As someone who has friends within Diamondway organization, I can tell you that the number of people who are literally afraid of attending teachings of other teachers is quite high. I remember that when Beru Khyentse Rinpoche was in Vienna more than two years ago, there were only five people from Ole's group among those present and none of them were from Austria or Slovakia. One of them told me that she came there despite being warned by the Diamondway organization that she should not attend. People who chose to ignore such warnings are often shamed within the group for going against lama and being confused.

It would absolutely make sense to ask Ole to provide concrete citations whether by 16th Karmapa, Kalu Rinpoche, 17th Karmapa or his other teachers to support his claims, but no-one ever did, or at least not boldly and publicly. This situation is comparable to Trump in the USA, when he says: "People say...or...Everybody says...," when in fact it is only him who says this.
I hesitated before answering this believe me, because I didn't want to be misunderstood as being in any kind of Nydahl camp. But the 16th Karmapa definitely did endorse Nydahls teaching role..which endorsement did not amount to recognising him as a guru..
I know this because I was there.
Of course much has changed since then.
Back to fishin' folks... :namaste:

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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by dzoki » Thu Jan 04, 2018 7:33 pm

Simon E. wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 7:10 pm
dzoki wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 6:14 pm
Vasana wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 5:48 pm
I doubt the proportion of followers who follow Ole's advice to refrain from other teachers and teachings is very high but I wouldn't know. Also, without knowing what the 16th Karmapa actually told them makes it all difficult to judge. Surely it would make sense to ask him to provide citations to back up his claims on individual teachers and then people can compare that with the life examples and teachings from non-sectarian masters of the recent past.
As someone who has friends within Diamondway organization, I can tell you that the number of people who are literally afraid of attending teachings of other teachers is quite high. I remember that when Beru Khyentse Rinpoche was in Vienna more than two years ago, there were only five people from Ole's group among those present and none of them were from Austria or Slovakia. One of them told me that she came there despite being warned by the Diamondway organization that she should not attend. People who chose to ignore such warnings are often shamed within the group for going against lama and being confused.

It would absolutely make sense to ask Ole to provide concrete citations whether by 16th Karmapa, Kalu Rinpoche, 17th Karmapa or his other teachers to support his claims, but no-one ever did, or at least not boldly and publicly. This situation is comparable to Trump in the USA, when he says: "People say...or...Everybody says...," when in fact it is only him who says this.
I hesitated before answering this believe me, because I didn't want to be misunderstood as being in any kind of Nydahl camp. But the 16th Karmapa definitely did endorse Nydahls teaching role..which endorsement did not amount to recognising him as a guru..
I know this because I was there.
Of course much has changed since then.
That is not a question here, and I am not arguing that Ole was not given a role of teacher, but that 16th Karmapa would wish that Ole's students receive teachings only from him alone and teachers whom he inveted to teach on specific topics and from no other source.

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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Thu Jan 04, 2018 7:34 pm

Man, I just don't get studying under a teacher like that, what a lack of care and respect for his students, ugh.
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Re: Ole Nydahl´s sectarian meltdown

Post by Simon E. » Thu Jan 04, 2018 7:44 pm

dzoki wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 7:33 pm
Simon E. wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 7:10 pm
dzoki wrote:
Thu Jan 04, 2018 6:14 pm


As someone who has friends within Diamondway organization, I can tell you that the number of people who are literally afraid of attending teachings of other teachers is quite high. I remember that when Beru Khyentse Rinpoche was in Vienna more than two years ago, there were only five people from Ole's group among those present and none of them were from Austria or Slovakia. One of them told me that she came there despite being warned by the Diamondway organization that she should not attend. People who chose to ignore such warnings are often shamed within the group for going against lama and being confused.

It would absolutely make sense to ask Ole to provide concrete citations whether by 16th Karmapa, Kalu Rinpoche, 17th Karmapa or his other teachers to support his claims, but no-one ever did, or at least not boldly and publicly. This situation is comparable to Trump in the USA, when he says: "People say...or...Everybody says...," when in fact it is only him who says this.
I hesitated before answering this believe me, because I didn't want to be misunderstood as being in any kind of Nydahl camp. But the 16th Karmapa definitely did endorse Nydahls teaching role..which endorsement did not amount to recognising him as a guru..
I know this because I was there.
Of course much has changed since then.
That is not a question here, and I am not arguing that Ole was not given a role of teacher, but that 16th Karmapa would wish that Ole's students receive teachings only from him alone and teachers whom he inveted to teach on specific topics and from no other source.
Fair enough, And of course that would have gone right against the openness of the times. Ole himself was young and humorous. He was never a humble kind of guy but back then he didn't take himself over seriously.
Back to fishin' folks... :namaste:

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