Dorje Shugden people
My dearest friends around the world,
What is your opinion:
Do you think we should segregate other people due to their economic class, color, gender, religious belief or lack of it, sexual orientation and culture? Should humans be judged on their preference as opposed to who they are inside? Do you think some are superior and others are inferior?
If someone practices Dorje Shugden and they are not harming anyone, nor do they wish to harm anyone and it’s their private practice, should we disassociate from them?
- Should we stop eating with Shugden people?
- Not meet Shugden people anymore?
- Not speak to them? Degrade them? Tell everyone to disassociate from them?
- Hurl abuse towards them? Shall we have numbers and quotas to meet? 20, 30, 50 abuses a day? Or should it be an infinite number for an indefinite time? What is enough?
- Call them derogatory names and segregate them? Call them liars, cheats and demon worshippers? Basically abuse them in any way we can? Does that make us better, more spiritual or achieve compassion?
- Should Shugden-worshipping people be removed from mainstream life? Are they inferior to others? How should they be treated and why? How far do we go to segregate them?
- Should they be disallowed to attend our schools, hospitals, public gatherings, meetings, social events and so on? Become second class citizens like the black people who were enslaved prior to emancipation? Shall we treat them differently than other citizens of this planet?
- If they are our spouse, should we divorce them? Should we not allow Shugden people to have kids, because then Shugden people would multiply?
- If they are our family members, should we stop talking with them or even disown them?
- If they are our students, should we turn them away?
- If they are our gurus/teachers, shall we forget all the kindness they have given us in help, teachings, advice, gifts, divinations, pujas and prayers and turn them out? Shall we just turn against our teacher because they practice Shugden? Nothing matters? No kindness and assistance rendered to us matters except whether they practice Shugden or not?
- Shall we be forced to choose a non-Shugden teacher over a Shugden-practicing teacher? Is the qualification we look for whether they practice Shugden or not, and nothing else matters? Is that the most important criteria?
- If a teacher practices Shugden, does all of his decades of study, meditation, purity in vows, vinaya purity and compassion all not count and he should be ex-communicated? Is the defining criteria of a teacher therefore whether they practice Shugden or not? If the teacher does practice Shugden, does it mean he is automatically disqualified, and should be degraded and expelled?
- Shall we disparage temples and places of worship because they practice Shugden? Shall we avoid those places or just burn them down? Shall we put up signs in all of our temples, public places and government services saying “If you practice Shugden, you are not welcome. You may not enter”? How far shall we go with this direction? Shall we not even ride a bus or sit at the bus stop with a person who worships Shugden? Maybe Governments should issue identity cards that clearly labels whether a person practices Shugden or not, since we have to be sure who is clean and unclean right?
- Shall we perhaps lock up Shugden practitioners, spit on them and never speak to them again since they are such “sinners”? (I’m not advocating to lock them up, spit or abuse them – it’s hypothetical only) Shall we not work in the same places of employment as Shugden worshippers? Shall we deny them all social services, welfare and benefits? Do not issue them passports to travel since they should not be treated equally? Again how far shall we go with this? Maybe we should not let them work at places non-Shugden people work, not allow them to save money or receive pensions? Maybe we should charge Shugden practitioners higher fees or not allow them to get insurance? Shouldn’t we find all means and avenues to force them to give up their practice or suffer? Should we have sanctions against Shugden people till they do what we want or have an embargo against them? I mean why stop at just advising people against Shugden? Since Shugden is so evil, all Shugden people are automatically completely evil and therefore perhaps just lock them up? If we advise people against Shugden and they don’t listen, let’s completely segregate them, and remove their civil and human rights? Don’t let them come near us or associate with us because they deserve nothing we are entitled to, simply because they are evil? Is that how we start treating people now? Why stop at just hurling abuses at them or putting up signs that they can’t enter certain businesses? Whether I practice Shugden or not or choose to reveal is my business. Why should I be cattle prodded and forced to reveal whether I do practice or don’t practice Shugden? I am not in a public office. You did not elect me into office. You like what I share spiritually, welcome. You don’t like, then don’t visit my centre, blog or social media pages. Why are you visiting a Shugden practitioner’s space or cyberspace daily if Shugden people are so bad? Won’t you be contaminated? To even be on the same cyber page, or blog page or Facebook page or tweet page will make you contaminated right? I mean if you want to disassociate to be pure, then go all the way. Maybe you should not even allow Shugden people the right to have blogs, social media pages or even a computer. After all they will speak about Shugden and infect and pollute others right? How far do you want to go with this?
- Who are you to force me or demand me or degrade me to ‘confess’ that I practice Shugden? If I don’t confess, that makes me bad and deceiving the public? How ridiculous. Is Shugden practice a crime I have to confess? Is it that everyone should wear their history, background, measurements, sexual preference, etc. on a placard and carry that around? Why only be transparent about our spiritual beliefs, why not the whole nine yards? Why make a limit? Go all the way so you can see who they are clearly if they wear a placard. That will make it easier to be the judge, jury and executioner if they are transparent about every aspect of their lives right? Since when can you judge people that you know nothing about, never met and have very little contact or no contact with you? The only criteria of a person is if they practice Shugden or not? Only Shugden and practicing Shugden and nothing else is bad? A person should not attend a religious discourse by high ‘compassionate’ lamas only because they practice Shugden? The high compassionate lama only has compassion for everyone BUT Shugden people is it? Does that sound logical? The students of these lamas may not associate with anyone who practice Shugden? The students of these lamas must show their loyalty and spiritual purity by associating with everyone but Shugden-practicing sentient beings right? So you may associate with Druids, witches, Satanists, sorcerers, necromancers, voodoo practitioners, New Agers, Blacks, Whites, Yellows, Browns, Reds, Jews, Hindus, Christians, Taoists, Shintoists, poor people, rich people, sick people, lepers, HIV positive people and every single being EXCEPT Shugden practitioners right? So should all spiritual teachers ‘advise’ and teach this to their followers? Tell their followers that everyone is fine and ok to meet and safe to associate with except Shugden people? So how far shall we go with this? Do I owe everyone who demands of me my privacy, private life and private affairs to be revealed and if I do not, I am a liar, cheat and con artist is it? So I cannot ask or demand anything of you because you don’t practice Shugden and you are perfect, pure and free of taint is it? Let those without sin cast the first stone? Or let those with sin judge another and just cast the stone because they practice Shugden? If they refuse to give up Shugden, let’s abuse them, lock them up, hurl insults and segregate them. Why don’t we just do that based on their skin color and sexual preference and social class too? If they practice Shugden, let’s not look at each sentient being with eyes of compassion, love and care correct? The criteria is Shugden here? How far shall we go with this?
- Shall we unfriend the Shugden people on all social media platforms? Shall we abuse them on social media daily? Shall we hide behind a social media page like Facebook and reveal nothing about ourselves, not even a picture of ourselves, and just abuse people who are elderly, young, learned, monks, nuns, teachers, masters, handicapped, people we have never met because they practice Shugden? Shall we have separate cemetery or crematorium for Shugden people? Or shall we not bother and just throw them into the ocean when they die? Oh but their Shugden-worshipping corpses might poison the fishes? So how shall we dispose of the dead Shugden people when they have passed? Ship their corpses to Mars? After all if we are buried in the same place with them, doesn’t that contaminate our corpses? Last time Blacks cannot be buried with Whites? Shall we revive that for Shugden people too? Why not? Shall we demand them to reveal their practices to us? Shall we call them liars, cheaters and fakes because they ‘owe’ us their lives or something like that? Shall we demand they apologize to us because they practice Shugden? How about if I apologize to racists who don’t like the fact I am Asian? Shall a person apologize for being male or female? Shall a person apologize for their ‘deviant’ sexual orientation to the straight world? Shall mentally handicapped children apologize to other kids for being slower? Shall the old apologize for being old, sick and in need of help? I mean shall I apologize to a person of another faith because I don’t belong to their faith? Where do we stop?
- Shall we ignore who a person is and what they are and what accomplishments they have just because of their belief in Shugden? All qualifications a person may have is disqualified due to the fact they practice Shugden? Shall we ‘advise’ people about this? We don’t need a ban, but just ‘advise’ people on this?
- So we should not be friends or associated with anyone who does this practice because it makes us impure, unclean, unattained and imperfect? So we are so different if we don’t associate with Shugden people? We become instantly perfect? What were we before we associated with Shugden people and what happened to us afterwards? How different are we before and after? We are perfect now? How about if we bash a Shugden person a day and make them feel bad? Insult them daily online, by social media or directly? What does anyone get from abusing another person? What does anyone get from hurling insults at a Shugden practitioner? You want to intimidate them to stop them from practicing? Shall we use intimidation tactics to everyone who does things we don’t like? Is that the right way to go?
- When our individual teachers teach us to disassociate and cut off any ties from Shugden practicing people, does this make this teacher compassionate, tolerant and kind? Is this the work of a Buddhist master or any spiritual teacher who alienates, segregates and creates prejudice against others due to their faith, religious belief or beliefs? Spiritual teachers should never teach things that divide and create segregation and hatred. But must teach in ways that unite, create harmony, love and tolerance. We need world peace. We need peace in our towns, villages, home and within ourselves. This will not be achieved by hating others who are different in their beliefs than us. We need to use religion to create peace and not more divisions. What is in our afterlife, whether heaven or hell, does not concern us but what concerns us is the here and now. We need peace, unity and love. Not more division. We have to learn from history and not repeat it again.
- Around 50 years ago in the USA, it was illegal for a Caucasian to marry a person of color or outside his race. Everyone believed this and enforced this law. It was to keep racial ‘purity’. Meaning all other races besides Caucasians are inferior and should not mix with them. Do you agree with this? Well it was the belief at that time although it sounds strange now. And that goes for their religion. Those in the USA who were not perhaps Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian, Lutheran or Catholic are impure and going to hell. In other words, Muslims, Buddhists, Jains, Taoists, Shintoists, Hindus are all impure and going to hell. And they have to be converted? Those beliefs were very strong and practiced by the majority in USA and perhaps Europe. Do you agree with this?
- People who practice Witchcraft, Voodoo, Satanists, Nature spirits, Native American religions, Druidism, Shamanistic faiths are not pure and should be burned at the stake? Some of them actually worship spirits. Should they be segregated because of their beliefs? Do you believe these people should be ostracized, biased, segregated, converted and if they don’t agree burn them at the stake? Or do you think we should respect them and embrace their other qualities that a good human can have such as compassion, generosity, intelligence, kindness, etc? Do you think we should condemn them just because their faith is not the same as ours or our spiritual leaders condemn them? Because there was a time not far back in the USA and Europe these religions were not respected and even against the law. Those who practiced them should be segregated and burned at the stake. Thousands of people in Europe and America were tortured and burned because of their ‘deviant’ spiritual beliefs. Shall we do that to all the people who believe in Dorje Shugden or respect them, love them and treat them equally as human beings with many facets to them besides their religious beliefs? Should we cooperate with religious teachers who teach us hatred, segregation and intolerance? Does it matter what another person’s religious beliefs are in order to treat them equally and kindly?
- If they need medical, psychological or physical assistance, should we deny to them because they practice Shugden? So should a doctor not treat a sick person who practices Shugden? Let them get sick? How far do we segregate and distance ourselves from Shugden practitioners. Why do we have to even label another person by their faith? Why do we have to base how we treat another person based on their spiritual/religious orientation?
- If someone is of a different sexual orientation, should they be segregated, make laws against them and abuse them because they are sub-human? Many people and countries did that in the past and is that correct and they should be discriminated because they are different? Shall we do the same for Shugden people?
- If they are elderly and need assistance, shall we abandon them because they practice Shugden?
- Shall we hurl stones at them, kick them out of our towns, villages and neighborhoods because they practice Shugden?
- Should Shugden people perhaps totally leave Planet Earth and find a way to Mars and stay there so they don’t contaminate earth, our waters, forest and environments? How far should we go in segregating Dorje Shugden people? Where does this segregation stop? Or should we segregate them at all?
- If we are Buddhists, the core teachings especially Lojong by the great Kadampa masters, Shantideva, Shantarakshita, Atisha, Guru Rinpoche and Tsongkhapa taught us to practice Tong-Len or taking upon ourselves the sufferings of others and that is our main practice. How does segregating others due to their color, gender, religious orientation, sexual preferences, culture and social-economic status help in our development of altruism, compassion and ultimately Buddhahood?
- If a certain race, group of people are discriminated against, should they take the discrimination or peacefully protest? For example, if all people who practice voodoo, cannot enter restaurants, hospitals and schools because they are ‘evil’, is that ok? Or not? If you are a beautiful person of color but not allowed in an all-white restaurant, is that ok? Since the prevailing belief at that time was White Supremacy? Let the person who doesn’t believe in what we believe just die and not enter our hospitals?
- If a powerful religious or secular leader does not agree with your religious beliefs or forms of worship, is it ok for them to ‘express’ their freedom of speech and at every public event by degrading your faith? Shall they repeat this over and over and over again at every one of their religious sermons? Should any lama or teacher repeat how bad Shugden is at every single religious sermon? What are you trying to do? What are you enforcing? What are you indirectly asking people to do? Segregate others? In turn, creating the situation for others to turn against you just for your faith? Your belief system or religion is ‘advised’ by these leaders and creates confusion and drama and pain, is that ok? Is it ok for the spiritual leaders, pope, bishops, monks, priests, sadhus, masters, gurus to publicly denounce someone’s faith, religious preference and spiritual practice when it’s different than theirs? Or they should show compassion and welcome all because they are human and deserve acceptance? Is that wise to do in today’s world or does that create bias, segregation and perhaps disharmony?
- Who in leadership is allowed to label a religion pure and another spirit worship? Didn’t early America label witchcraft ‘evil’ and insist practitioners should be burned? Should we allow this again today? That certain leaders have all the power to eradicate or condone a certain faith?
- IMPORTANT- If a Dorje Shugden practitioner approached Lord Buddha, Guru Rinpoche or Lord Tsongkhapa would these great beings tell them to go away? Tell them they are ruining their samaya, or they are unfit and unclean? Can our samayas be so delicate and easily corrupted just because we associate with Dorje Shugden people? Would these great beings show them hostility, hatred and hurl abuses? Or would they show equal compassion to them as any other beings that approached them? Would Buddha tell a Dorje Shugden practitioner to go away? If Lord Buddha was giving a sermon, do you think Shugden practitioners would be allowed to attend or do you think they would stain his samaya or his teachings?
You will never see signs like this at the White House, Buckingham Palace, etc. but only in Tibetan settlements. If there is no ban, why are the Dalai Lama’s people telling Dorje Shugden followers not to contact him at all?
If His Holiness was the secular leader, why are his people turning away their own citizens from him? As the secular leader, he should meet all freely and fairly to discuss and address their secular concerns, regardless of the differences in their faith and beliefs.
~ Pastor Jean Ai
Can anyone honestly answer these questions after some deep contemplation? How far should we segregate another person based on race, gender, social economic background, class, sexual preference and spiritual belief? Or should we NEVER segregate anyone based on these mentioned qualities. Shall we just love and accept all no matter who they are and what they believe? Shall we abuse Dorje Shugden practitioners because a mystical lama said we should and abuse them daily on the internet? Is that compassion? Is that the religion we follow? Is this not the age of science and ‘enlightenment’ or dark ages? Is it ok to abuse another person because they will not submit to what you think is right for them? How can you abuse a spiritual faith or path using another religion?
How far shall we segregate Dorje Shugden practitioners? What is the limit? Where do you draw the line? They won’t surrender their beliefs and the other half who don’t practice will not also? So what’s the solution? Get rid of all of the Shugden people? How much abuse shall we hurl at Shugden believers just because they believe in Shugden? Shall we hurl abuses at people different than our skin color, culture, economic class and preferences? How far shall we go with that? How much more vulgarities is enough? How much more negative name calling to Shugden people would make us feel better about who we are or who we are not? Does putting another person down make us better or closer to enlightenment? Shall we wake up daily for the rest of our lives hurling abuses against people who prefer to be different than us? Maybe just send them away to an island, Mars or out of our sight?
Shugden people are not people? They should be abused? Why do we keep abusing them when it’s simply disrespect of another person. You don’t like their beliefs, then steer clear. Why visit their space or cyberspace daily? Obsession, mental disorder or you being paid to do so? Why do you keep talking about Shugden people? Are you being paid to do it? Is some Tibetan leadership paying you to create disharmony? Or some government paying you to hurl abuses to Shugden people? Is that why you go on and hurl abuses everyday? For all the abuses some hurl, if it was replaced with a Om Mani Peme Hung instead, you’d be near enlightenment!
Can the people in power or spiritual leaders meet with Shugden leaders and resolve this already? Can we resolve this in a way everyone wins? Can we solve this Shugden issue? It will not go away on its own. The Shugden issue was not created by the Shugden people. Can we resolve this and have some constructive meetings? Let’s resolve this and create peace as soon as possible. I would love to just practice Lam Rim, Lojong, Tsongkapa Guru Yoga and meditate in peace even if I practice Shugden please? Shugden is just one aspect of me but not all of me. Can you look at me and treat me as a whole person and not dissect me and just extract the Shugden part of me please? Let’s resolve this issue now please? Can we sit down and talk politely? Can the Tibetan leadership sit down and talk with Shugden people in peace with smiles to find a solution please?
I do not mean offense to anyone with these questions but have observed this happening in today’s environment and was thinking deeper to myself. What do you think? Shall we abuse or segregate anyone or be kind to all?
For more related articles of interest and importance: http://www.tsemrinpoche.com/tsem-tulku-rinpoche/category/dorje-shugden
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