Header image header image 2  
anti-Buddhist?

 
 
NUTS

NKT's debate over its main god, Shugden, is as continuous as it is delusional.

At NKT's protest against the Dalai Lama last year in London, a NKTite stated about Shugden,

"He is a key part of my faith. There is no Buddhist practice without him."

No Buddhist practice without Shugden! Sorry Shakyamuni, Manjushri, Avalokiteshvara, Tsongkhapa, Atisha, Padmasambhava and the rest of you, move aside. NKTites prefer to take refuge in their demon spirit, Shugden.

Watch for yourself NKT's coverage of its protests here (note the 'related videos' list on the right side of the web page). Consider the impact of these protests on passersby as they consider what Buddhism has to offer. Consider how little benefit NKT has to offer the world.

Hundreds of millions of Buddhists in this world did not 'get the memo', and (thankfully) practice their Buddhist compassion without either knowledge of or worship of Shugden. In contrast, Shugdenites are not known for practicing compassion but rather displaying anger as they 'protect' their protector, Shugden.

Another example, April 19, 2009, a prominent NKTite wrote,

"No one except the Dalai Lama is saying that Dorje Shugden is a spirit so when you say “this spirit’ your view is a minority (of) one supported by no evidence. Yet there is overwhelming evidence that Dorje Shugden has been revered as a Buddha and the protector of Je Tsongkhapa’s tradition for nearly four hundred years...Trinley Kalsang (a blogger who NKT promotes as a Shugden expert) says, "In short, it has been revealed from historical sources that Dorje Shugden is the Three Bodhisattvas: Avalokiteshvara, Vajrapani and Manjushri. He is the sole protector ever to bear the title Protector of the Conqueror Manjunatha, having the responsibility to protect and promote the doctrine of the Second Buddha Jamgon Lama Tsongkhapa. In the distant future, he is the Seventh Buddha of this fortunate eon...It is most definitely Kali Yuga* when highly qualified Buddhist Masters and their teachings are no longer accepted but ridiculed and lies are accepted for no reason whatsoever."

Of course, NKT's position is entirely false. Virtually every Tibetan Lama/Rinpoche/Geshe, Buddhist who knows about Shugden and academic researcher who has published their Shugden analysis recognize that Shugden is a demon spirit and certainly not a Buddha. Gyatso's own uncle was a Shugden oracle who contacted this demon spirit (Buddhas are not contacted via oracles) and left NKT when Gyatso began his campaign against the Dalai Lama, returning to India to support the Dalai Lama. Outside Tibetan Buddhism, Shugden is irrelevant. Inside Tibetan Buddhism, Shugden is mostly seen as spirit requiring control through appeasement in order to escape Shugden's harm. NKT, unaffiliated with Tibetan Buddhism and perhaps because of this, is the lead group marketing Shugden around the world to be a Buddha as a wedge issue against the Dalai Lama.

Moreover, this NKTite schizophrenically diversifies the identity of Shugden to include 3 Buddhas, Avalokiteshvara, Vajrapani and Manjushri as well as the future 7th Buddha portraying Shugden as a Buddha for hundreds of years, a standin for various other pure land Buddhas and yet a new Buddha in the future.

There is not a single shred of evidence that Shugden is a Buddha. Rather, Shugden was nominally elevated to Buddha status by Pabongkha based on a dream in which Shugen spoke with him for use to harm other sects of Tibetan Buddhism.

Seeking legitimacy for his cult, Gyatso evolved Shugdenism as his weapon against the Dalai Lama and other Buddhists. (Notably, the Dalai Lama, a human emanation of Avalokiteshvara, the Buddha of compassion, is despised by NKT.)

NKT markets Gyatso as the 3rd Buddha, meaning that, according to NKT, Gyatso is only the second Buddha to walk this earth over the past 2,500 years (Tsongkhapa became a Buddha after he died). Concurrently, NKT markets its tantra specialty as the quick and easy path to becoming a Buddha even though it has never shown to be successful. Currently, NKT is marketing Gyatso's last mass tantra empowerment preceded by a mass Shugden empowerment this coming July in England for NKT novices and pros alike.

 

* From Wikipedia,

"Kali Yuga ("Age of (the male demon) Kali", "age of vice"), is one of the four stages of development that the world goes through as part of the cycle of Yugas, as described in Indian scriptures, the others being Satya Yuga, Treta Yuga and Dvapara Yuga. According to the Surya Siddhanta, an astronomical treatise that forms the basis of all Hindu and Buddhist calendars, Kali Yuga began at midnight (00:00) on 18 February 3102 BCE [1] in the proleptic Julian calendar or 23 January 3102 BC in the proleptic Gregorian calendar, which is also considered by many Hindus to be the time that Krishna, an incarnation of Vishnu, died as a result of a freak bow hunting accident. The Kali Yuga is traditionally thought to last 432,000 years...Hindus believe that human civilization degenerates spiritually throughout the Kali Yuga: it is mostly referred to as the Dark Age...Kali Yuga is associated with the apocalypse demon Kali...Avarice and wrath will be common, men will openly display animosity towards each other. Ignorance of Dharma will occur. Lust will be viewed as being socially acceptable. People will have thoughts of murder for no justification, and they will see nothing wrong with that mind-set...Men with false reputation of learning will teach the Truth. The old will betray the innocence of the young, and the young will betray the dotage of the old. Cowards will have a reputation for bravery, and the brave will be enervated cowards. People will not trust anyone in the world, not even their immediate family. Husband and wife will find contempt in each other. In Kali Yuga, even pre-teenage girls will get pregnant. The primary cause will be the social acceptance of sexual intercourse as being the central requirement of life. It is believed that sin will increase exponentially, whilst virtue will fade and cease to flourish. People will take vows only to break them soon after. Death and famine will be everywhere. Men will have lustful thoughts, and so will women. People will without reason destroy trees and gardens. Men will commit murder. There will be no respect for animals, and meat eating will start. People will become addicted to intoxicating drinks. Men will find their jobs stressful and will go to retreats to escape their work. Gurus will no longer be respected and their students will attempt to injure them. Their teachings will be insulted and followers of Kama will wrest control of the mind from all human beings. As the sin increases exponentially, so will the incidence of divine justice and wrath...Kali is the reigning lord of Kali Yuga, and the nemesis of Sri Kalki, the 10th and final avatar of Lord Vishnu. According to the Vishnu Purana, he is a negative manifestation of Vishnu who, along with his extended evil family, perpetually operates as a cause of the destruction of this world. He serves as an antagonistic force in the Kalki Purana. Towards the end of this yuga, Kalki will come riding on a white horse to battle Kali and his dark forces. The world will suffer a fiery end which will destroy all evil, and a new age, Satya Yuga, will begin."

If NKT is right, we have about 425,000 years of this epoch remaining...425,000 years more of NKT attacks against Buddhism, 425,000 years remaining of Shugden's demon reign over this evil world.

Fortunately, little of NKT's mythology is true, although Shugden and Kali appear to have a lot in common.

 

Editors Note:
If it wasn't for the great harm that NKT is causing against its clergy and students, the reputation of Buddhism, the Tibet Government in Exile and the Dalai Lama, NKT's esoteric Shugden battle would not merit discussion.

"Buddhism is not a spirit worship religion. At a time when Buddhism is still being introduced to the West, it is damaging to all schools of Buddhism to be confused with spirit worship. Tibetan Buddhism is being systematically flushed out of Tibet by the government of China. As Tibetan Buddhism scatters, disembodied, around the globe, His Holiness the Dalai Lama is struggling to maintain some cohesion and integrity within it. The Shugden controversy clearly is weakening that effort. Buddhism is not a spirit worship religion. At a time when Buddhism is still being introduced to the West, it is damaging to all schools of Buddhism to be confused with spirit worship. Tibetan Buddhism is being systematically flushed out of Tibet by the government of China. As Tibetan Buddhism scatters, disembodied, around the globe, His Holiness the Dalai Lama is struggling to maintain some cohesion and integrity within it. The Shugden controversy clearly is weakening that effort. Buddhism is not a spirit worship religion. At a time when Buddhism is still being introduced to the West, it is damaging to all schools of Buddhism to be confused with spirit worship. Tibetan Buddhism is being systematically flushed out of Tibet by the government of China. As Tibetan Buddhism scatters, disembodied, around the globe, His Holiness the Dalai Lama is struggling to maintain some cohesion and integrity within it. The Shugden controversy clearly is weakening that effort." (Barbara O'Brien, The Dorje Shugden Controversy: Destroying Tibetan Buddhism in Order to Save It?)

"For those wondering what deity or spirit worship has to do with mainstream Buddhism, the answer is— little or nothing. In early Buddhism, the nikayas (early Buddhist scriptures common to all mainstream Buddhist schools) do not encourage or promote deity or spirit worship. The Buddha’s teaching included no rituals to propitiate deities. However, a tolerant attitude has been maintained towards those in Buddhist countries that did (or do) make offerings to deities. Such practices are not regarded as ‘Buddhist’ but as relics from earlier indigenous—sometimes shamanistic, magical or superstitious— practices...Those sincerely interested in Buddhism would be well advised to avoid Buddhist teachers who feel driven to import, support or recreate Asian conflicts in a British or Western setting. We have too much of this already. Those Westerners who want to practice the essential teachings of Buddhism should also avoid spirit worship or propitiation. This is not the path or teaching of the Buddha ... nor of Tsong-kha-pa or Ati´sa." (staff of Triple Gem, the Buddhist Think Tank)

“It is also very questionable what this is supposed to accomplish. Here we see two sides. One side is this demonstration, and on the other side are the Chinese who are shouting the same slogans. Therefore, one has to really ask what connection they have. And, since we also come from Asia and have lived under Communist rule, we know how propaganda and brain-washing happens...Actually, it is a real pity to see that for creating peace we have to work together. And, instead the demonstrations and provocations are being staged here. Nevertheless, we hope that eventually these people will absorb Buddha’s guidance and Buddha’s loving kindness. Instead of shouting they should turn inside for meditation. It brings much, much more to settle inside and to have this inner reflection.” (Thich Thien Son, fled Vietnam in 1979 due to religious persecution, founder and Abbot of Pagoda Phat Hue Located in Frankfurt, Germany)

“Western followers of a few Gelugspa monks who worship that deity, lacking any critical awareness of its sectarian functions in Tibet, have recently followed the Dalai Lama to his speaking engagements to protest his strong stance (for non-sectarianism) in the name of their “religious freedom” to promulgate, now in the West, an embodiment of Tibetan sectarianism. If it were not so harmful to persons and traditions, this would surely be one of the funniest examples of the cross-cultural confusion that lack of critical reflection continues to create.” (John Nakransky, Professor of Buddhism, Boston College and guiding meditation teacher of the Foundation for Active Compassion)