Header image header image 2  
anti-Buddhist?

 
 
BE CAREFUL WITH NKT'S QUOTES


misquote
Note large Shugden Icon Statue in background

For NKT's Spring Festival 2009 NKT has created a video diary.

NKT's choice of a quote purportedly from Nagarjuna (150-250), an Indian philosopher and the founder of the Madhyamaka school of Mahāyāna Buddhism, may be perplexing.

Surely, feeding trillions of living beings three times a day offers greater benefit than meditating even on love for just one moment. Without food there would be no living beings. Without living beings there would be no love.

Also, doing love is better than thinking about it (too easily a selfish exercise). The happiness of others is more important than our own. We should cherish others more than our self. What we do should preferentially be about elevating others, not ourselves.

Is NKT accurate in its portrayal of Nagarjuna's advice? Or, is NKT paraphrasing Nagarjuna to rationalize why it rarely if ever offers sustenance to living beings (without a fee)?

Various English translations are readily available, none of which supports NKT's version.

From Nagarjuna's Precious Garland: Buddhist Advice for Living & Liberation by Jeffrey Hopkins in association with various other translators...

No. 241.
O One of Good Wisdom, please provide
Hostels, parks, dikes,
Ponds, rest-houses, water-vessels,
Beds, food, hay, and wood.

No. 242.
Please establish rest-houses
In all towns, at temples, and in all cities
And provide water-vessels
On all arid roadways.

No. 243.
Always care compassionately
For the sick, the unprotected, those stricken
With suffering, the lowly, and the poor
And take special care to nourish them.

No. 244.
Until you have given to monastics and beggars
Seasonally-appropriate food and drink,
As well as produce, grain, and fruit,
You should not partake of them.

No. 248.
Please have small containers
In the shade filled with sesame,
Rice, grains, foods, molasses,
And suitable water.

No. 249.
At the openings of ant-hills
Please have trustworthy persons
Always put food, water,
Sugar, and piles of grain.

No. 250.
Before and after taking food
Always appropriately offer fare
To hungry ghosts, dogs,
Ants, birds, and so forth.

No. 283.
Even three times a day to offer
Three hundred cooking pots of food
Does not match a portion of the merit
In one instant of love.

No. 284.
Though [through love] you are not liberated
You will attain the eight good qualities of love-
Gods and humans will be friendly,
Even [non-humans] will protect you,

(the numbers refer to the paragraph number of the 'poem' of advice to a king to seek liberation by Nagarjuna)

Clearly, contrary to possible suggestion by NKT, Nagarjuna advise to feed living beings, humans and ants alike.

Focusing on 'merit', not liberation, Nagarjuna says offering 300 pots of food 3 times a day does not match the merit derived from one instant of love. In fact, Nargajuna explains that through love we are not liberated but will attain the 8 good qualities of love ("friendliness from gods and humans, protection by spirits, mental and physical pleasures, defense against weapons and poisons, effortless achievement, and rebirth in comfort" (Jeffrey Hopkins drawing upon Nargajuna's paragraphs 284 and 285)).

Thus, once again NKT distorts Buddhism to promote its cult of opposition to helping living beings. No wonder Kelsang Gyatso bans Buddhist texts other than his own for NKT.

Why won't NKT adhere to Nagarjuna's recommendations above?

At NKT, pretending and billing is better than doing and giving.

Nagarjuna
Nagarjuna