Western Shugden Society: Sowing Dissent Through Baseless Allegations


Today, the 29th of September 2008 will be remembered by most people as the day that the Wall Street bailout bill failed to pass in the US Senate. However, for Buddhists, it will be remembered as the day that the Western Shugden Society officially began its campaign to overthrow HH the 14th Dalai Lama and the Tibetan Government in Exile. Of course, the timing very unfortunate, as talks between the TGIE envoys and the Chinese government are at a crucial juncture. One wonders what the publication from this article accomplishes, apart from maintaining press coverage and the morale of WSS advocates.

The article, does not list any text or other reliable sources, apart from one book, an Ocean of Truth, but doesn’t cite the author or publication date of this apparent source. It doesn’t even say who the author of this latest WSS article is, perhaps preferring anonymity to forthrightness. It simply says at the beginning: “The following information has been compiled from various sources.” Those who wonder what these sources are, of course, are missing the point. Why? Well, really, an accurate or balanced account isn’t the point. It seems that the Tibetan organizations were correct in their summation of the Shugden campaign that was dismissed by the WSS as hateful and libelous rhetoric. But in fact, as we can now see plainly, WSS and its supporters are trying to “Sow dissent and undermine the Dalai Lama”.

Whoever wrote this article didn’t consider very carefully the implications it would have even for the Shugden camp. If it were true that the current Dalai Lama in an impostor, this would indicate two things:

  1. That Trijang Rinpoche, an omniscient Buddha and party to the background of the current Dalai Lama, kept secret something he knew to be a lie.
  2. That Dorje Shugden, at the time of the selection of the 14th Dalai Lama, failed once again in his “duty” to “protect” the Ganden tradition.

But surely, though Trijang Rinpoche may have been mistaken about Shugden, as a monk and by most accounts compassionate person he would not have allowed an impostor Dalai Lama to continue on the throne. The mystifying contradictions only go to once again further the conclusion reached by Tibetans in India a long time ago, that the WSS is “sowing dissent and undermining the Dalai Lama.”

In addition, the latest attempt by WSS reveals another ill-founded and un-Buddhist tactic – manipulation of Islamophobia. After using the headline “Saffron-robed Muslim” in their “information” booklet “The Tibetan Situation Today”, once again the thinly veiled anti-Muslim rhetoric appears in this article, “Taktser was a Muslim village”, and of course the unverified statements (no witnesses, no documents) that Buddhists had to pay Muslim officials bribes “in order to release” His Holiness the Dalai Lama from the Muslim community. Increasingly the prejudices of some in the WSS members, or at the very least the authors of their publications, are beginning to show. Though they claim the contrary, the label fundamentalist is becoming increasingly appropriate for the WSS.

Not content to merely undermine His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s selection by a litany of highly realized lamas as well as the Tibetan government, the latest propaganda aims to manipulate the deaths of two elderly but venerated lamas. Though HH Ling Rinpoche lived until the ripe old age of 80, we are told that his death was the fault of the Dalai Lama encouraging Gelugs to investigate the Nyingma tradition. Trijang Rinpoche, who also died at the mature and venerable age of 80, died because the Dalai Lama decided to give up Shugden.
One wonders how the WSS can claim that HH Dalai Lama and Tibetans who follow him are superstitious when they make such bold, unsubstantiated and superstitious claims themselves.

Clearly, the cause of Tibet, the work of HH Dalai Lama, the stability of the Three Great Monasteries is no concern of the WSS. Only the undermining of the institution of the Dalai Lama and the faith of his followers. It is very apparent that the political aspect of this campaign has shifted into high gear.

Clearly the WSS would have us believe that Serkong Rinpoche, Serkong Dorjechang, Ling Rinpoche, Trijang Rinpoche, Reting Rinpoche, the Ganden Tripa, HH Sakya Trizing, HH Karmapa, Penor Rinpoche, Phakchog Rinpoche and the countless others lamas who support HH Tenzin Gyatso as the 14th Dalai Lama are misleading the public. WSS alone can be counted to tell the “truth” about all Tibetan issues.
Perhaps one good thing can come out of this latest attack: nobody will believe ever again that the WSS is non-political.

For an accurate account of the enthronement of the Dalai Lama, verified by countless venerable lamas including WSS favourite Trijang Rinpoche, see this work:

  • Wangdu, Khemey Sonam (2000). “Discovery of the Fourteenth Dalai Lama. An Eyewitness Account.” In: Discovery, Recognition and Enthronement of the 14th Dalai Lama. Dharamsala: Library of Tibetan Works and Archives, pp. 1-52

Annotation by blog owner

This is the author’s reply to the WSS article Reting Lama – How he chose the false Dalai Lama. The author wished to be anonymous.

For more about the Dalai Lamas see

  • The Open Road: The Global Journey of the Fourteenth Dalai Lama by Pico Iyer
  • Freedom in Exile: Autobiography of the Dalai Lama by Dalai Lama XIV*
  • Fourteen Dalai Lamas: A Sacred Legacy of Reincarnation by Glenn H. Mullin

For more about Tibet’s history

  • The Story of Tibet: Conversations with the Dalai Lama by Thomas Laird
  • The Dragon in the Land of Snows: A History of Modern Tibet Since 1947 by Tsering Shakya
  • In Exile from the Land of Snows: The Definitive Account of the Dalai Lama and Tibet Since the Chinese Conquest by John Avedon
  • A History of Modern Tibet, 1913-1951: The Demise of the Lamaist State by Melvyn C. Goldstein

* recommended by Paul Williams in Encyclopedia of New Religious Movements (edited by Clarke, Routledge, 2005), p. 137


  1. Well, who is going to come on and say the WSS is non-political now? I don’t think this can be argued any longer.

  2. The Truth in the Ocean of Truths is, they have pure intentions (“to expose the hypocrisy of the Dalai Lama”) and people with pure intentions who only love the Dalai Lama are never political because they have a pure mind and do not “mix Dharma with politics” ;-)

  3. “That Trijang Rinpoche, an omniscient Buddha and party to the background of the current Dalai Lama, kept secret something he knew to be a lie.
    That Dorje Shugden, at the time of the selection of the 14th Dalai Lama, failed once again in his “duty” to “protect” the Ganden tradition”

    Anyone from WSS care to answer to these two points?

  4. I am not from WSS but they could argue: ‘You have to discriminate between “skilful mean” and “lie”‘. Geshe Kelsang is also omniscient according to NKT followers therefore members can not understand his actions because they are not omniscient. In the past they said it like this: ‘we don’t know the three times, so we can not understand Geshe-la, he knows the three times.’ there are always some arguments which can be found ;-)

  5. Any ideas who the “scholar” was who wrote this gem?

  6. WSS NEVER FAIL to AMUSE me, and it NEVER WILL, with their own make ‘true, they have quoted “The following information has been compiled from various sources.” but again, like the author of the above artice say, they failed once and again to provide what kind of ‘sources’ they have. Apparently, whoever has wrote the defame article ‘chosing a fale DL’ dont have a very good knowledge or even bother to have a extensive study of what he/she claimed.

    Again and again, with their one-sided ‘reliable sources’, they are not only the laughing stone to the world, but also showing the whole world, how ‘now-polical’ they are…Let see how long they are play the fire in their own hand.

  7. WSS, I would advise you to do a more intensive and thorough research before you publish such laughable and senseless article which only make yourselves a laughing stone.


  8. They have no doubt learnt it from GKG who was quite happy to quote from dubious sources.

    “According to the information that I have received from authentic sources, when the Dalai Lama first began to engage in Nyingma practices, it was HH Ling Rinpoche who tried to discourage him, strongly advising him against these practices. This does not mean that HH Ling Rinpoche was saying that the Nyingma practices are not good, but he felt that it was an affront to the Gelugpas, indicating that their practice was not a complete path. Until that time the Dalai Lama had been pure Gelugpa, and now he was changing; this was not a good indication for the Gelug tradition. There is no criticism implied that Nyingma practice is not pure.” (Geshe Kelsang Gyatso, talk.religion.buddhism, 19 December 1997)

    All i can say is they are indeed very skillful with their sources, whether it’s WSS’ “compiled from various sources”; GKG’s “authentic sources”; or Ursula Bernis’ “reliable oral sources” we have discussed in another thread.



  9. dorjeshugdentruth says:

    This is non-political unless you view the Dalai Lama as a political leader, and this goes to the heart of the whole problem. The Dalai Lama has mixed politics and religion so seemlessly that even his followers don’t know where one ends and the other begins.

    It’s quite clear in my mind – the Dalai Lama as no qualifications as a religious leader other than the spiritual education he received from Ling and Trijang Rinpoche whose tradition he has rejected in favour of mixing – so now he has no spiritual qualifications at all. Therefore, what right does he have to interfere in the spiritual lives of millions of people by pronouncing what people can and cannot practice and deciding who is Buddhist and who is a cult? The answer is ‘none’.

    I think the game is up.

  10. I see, dorjeshugdentruth, HH the Dalai Lama has “no spiritual qualifications at all”. Thank you for ‘clarification’ and sharing new New Kadampa Truths ;-)

    BTW what game is up? Are WSS becoming suicide web-attackers or web-bombers? This “game” only harms NKT, WSS, and all Shugden followers, it does not anything good. In a way the WSS campaign just proofs what the critics of Shugden practice already stated, that this practice is spiritual harmful and makes the ordinary person practising it mad.

  11. dorjeshugdentruth says:

    Dear Tenzin,

    Here’s a little story for you….

    Once there was a great King who received a prediction that coming rains would poison the water supply and make everyone mad. Consequently, he found a pure supply of water and protected it. The rains came, the people drank the water and went mad.

    Later, the mad people began to think that the King was mad, but in reality he was the only sane person among them. In the land of the mad, the sane person is held to be crazy because he acts differently from the others.

    What if the story about the false Dalai Lama is true, told by the one sane person left? Are you sane enough to accept it?

    Now who’s mad?

  12. Thank you DorjeShugdenTuth.

    So who is sane and who is insane or who is the great king?

    Is Geshe Kelsang Gyatso sane or insane, is he the great king?
    Is HH the Dalai Lama sane or insane, is he the great king?

    Did you know that many people who are insane think they are sane and the others are insane? Do you know how children react when their father or mother is insane?

    I think we come here to the core of the dispute.

    BTW hasn’t the story about the great king a certain end?
    Maybe you can help me with this:
    I guess GKG wrote “Reting Lama – How he chose the false Dalai Lama”, like he probably wrote the “21st Century Buddhist Dictator – the Dalai Lama”, didn’t he? Do you know who the author is?


    comment TP:
    It depends upon if Buddhists see this as a problem or not…


    comment TP:
    I think they will give him water. They love him and this is perfectly fine.

  15. “What if the story about the false Dalai Lama is true, told by the one sane person left?”

    This is true cult mentality. “We have the only truth left, everyone else is a liar.” It is the type of teaching that has led to incidents like Waco and the Solar Temple.

    WSS has revealed its spiteful political aims. How dare you compare this campaign to one of peace and love of Martin Luther King Jr.?

    Few of your followers will be convinced of this, and no journalist or thinking Buddhist will take your website seriously. You serve only to harm the cause of the monks in India you say you want to help, and depict the NKT as a dangerous fringe group.


  16. Thanks so much DS Truth! Now I know that Kelsang Gyatso and Nga-Lama Kundeling Losang Yeshe are the only two teachers who tell the truth, so I should sign up for NKT courses! All other Lamas are either liars or are stupid and have been duped! I posted this on Tricycle but I think it’s equally relevant to our discussion here:
    This latest tactic has nothing to do with the Shugden issue and you know it. I think WSS ran out of exaggerated material to post about India on its website and, terrified the campaign was losing steam, decided to play nasty.

    And do you really expect anyone to take an article that doesn’t cite sources, have an author, or provide any evidence apart from one dubius opinion at face value? If you included such an article even in a Grade 6 assignment you’d receive a failing grade.

    Why do we think it isn’t true?

    Because it would mean one of two things about all the Tibetan Lamas in the world who support His Holiness the Dalai Lama:

    1)They have no realizations and have been duped by a false Dalai Lama

    2)They knew he was a fake and allowed Tibetans and the entire world to be misled, which would make them liars and charlatans.
    Sorry, we won’t to believe this about our teachers.

    It would mean the following great lamas are liars and charlatans, and only Kelsang Gyatso and Kundeling Losang Yeshe are pure teachers (while, ironically not long ago NKT sued students of Losang Yeshe):

    Lamas who Support Tenzin Gyatso as HH DALai Lama:
    HH Karmapa
    the late Trijang Rinpoche
    the current Trijang Rinpoche (see photo on website)
    the late ling Rinpoche
    the current Ling Rinpoche
    HH Karmapa
    HH Sakya Trizin
    the late Minling Trichin Rinpoche
    HH Penor Rinpoche
    HH Phakchog Rinpoche
    Kyabje Choden Rinpoche
    Kyabje Lati Rinpoche
    Kyabje Zopa Rinpoche
    the late Kirti Tzenshap Rinpoche
    the late and current Zong Rinpoche
    the late and current Serkong Rinpoche
    Khen Rinpoche (abbots) of the main Gelug monasteries:
    Sera Mey and Jey
    Ganden Shartse and Jangtse
    Drepung Gomang and Loseling
    Tashi Lhunpo
    Dzongkhar Choede
    Namgyal Dratsang
    Dialectics Institute

    So, all these people are liars and only Kelsang Gyatso and Nga-Lama Kundeling Yeshe are reliable? KG who changes the Vinaya single-handedly without consulting monastics, and Losang Yeshe who defends the Cultural revolution in Tibet and whose students your own organization sued?

    Of course, this would also mean that Trijang Rinpoche is a fake and a liar, allowing a pretender to the throne to be trained and placed with great responsibility.

    You’ve done him a disservice. And BTW, if this article were really true, why doesn’t it cite any sources? And why isn’t the author proud to put his name to it?

    You have revealed WSS for what it is, a front group trying to destroy mainstream Tibetan Buddhism in order to portray Shugden to naieve Western followers as the only “pure tradition”. This article barely mentions Shugden, and shows that the WSS mandate isn’t about Shugden worship, but the destruction of Tibetan Buddhism.

    Now that your mandate is clear, perhaps what you see as anger is just people’s decision not to be polite with an extremist group. I put your tactics in the same category as the “Fair Game” tactics of the Church of Scientology. “Oppose us and we’ll spread lies without sources or evidence”.

    This latest tactic reveals you as desperate, extremist fundamentalists. While I have compassion for those who have been duped by your organization, I can no longer be polite about this campaign whose goal has become glaringly obvious.

  17. Dear Khedrup,
    I think this is true: “What if the story about the false Dalai Lama is true, told by the one sane person left?”, can’t you see the truth in the Ocean of Truths? ;-)

    In general, I think, the best is to take the issue as light as possible. Maybe someone with humour and skills, like Charlie Chaplin, can make a truth-comedy e.g. “The Final Truth: The Great 21st Buddhist Century Dictator”.

    Welcome to NKT World!
    Best Wishes, TP

  18. You are more evolved than I. After several weeks of polite and understated statements I feel that this article requires strong responses from those of us who care about HHDL and the stability of the Tibetan community in exile. That being said, maybe there is nothing serious left to say, as with careful examination this article has no sources, only conjecture and opinion, and it is clearly a very childish and unsophisticate ploy for attention.
    Still, if Britney Spears dropping her Starbucks on the way to the gym is consumable news, my fear is that this might be as well.

  19. Yes, I am more involved Khedrub. I am grateful to you and all others who help with their comments to balance the WSS campaign and to offer different pov. Thanks a lot!!!

  20. DorejshugdenTruth wrote: It’s quite clear in my mind – the Dalai Lama as no qualifications as a religious leader other than the spiritual education he received from Ling and Trijang Rinpoche whose tradition he has rejected in favour of mixing – so now he has no spiritual qualifications at all. Therefore, what right does he have to interfere in the spiritual lives of millions of people by pronouncing what people can and cannot practice and deciding who is Buddhist and who is a cult? The answer is ‘none’.

    Dear DST

    All the above applies to Geshe Kelsang Gyatso…


  21. More evolved means, better at not taking this too seriously, as in, your mind is tamer.
    It’s a different meaning than involved ;-)

    I agreed to send some money to help a monk friend of mine at Ganden buy meds for his mom today and I told him about this campaign. He says he thinks the Inchees (Westerners) must believe that the court case in India would fail, how else could they resort to these tactics? He also says that the latest article could be used as evidence the Shugdenpas are trying to overthrow HHDL and TGIE through subversion and unverifiable claims, and that this might help the case of the TGIE in the Delhi court.

  22. dorjeshugdentruth says:

    Dear Khedrup,

    Are you telling me that there are some truths that are not acceptable? Are you telling me there are some things that no one will believe even if they are true because of their attachment to their idea?

    I hope you are wrong or human beings have no hope.

    If the Dalai Lama was a fraud, would you want people to know? Do you think this would be beneficial? Would you be prepared to accept that you had made a mistake and change your mind? But it’s not even a possibility for you, even though you have no evidence to prove that the Dalai Lama is not a fake. Isn’t this blind faith?

    Samsara continues due to fixed ideas like this.

  23. dorjeshugdentruth says:

    Oh, and the truth is the truth, no matter how unpopular it may be.

    Buddha fearlessly expounded the truth.

    comment TP
    Many people expound just their delusions. Even when they are doing this fearlessly and think these are “truths”, still these are delusions. To blame a single being, like WSS is doing, as the cause of suffering is delusion regardless how much this is sold as “the truth”. “Truth” clinging is mainly found in evangelist or fundamentalist groups. The truth is relative, the absolute truth is without characteristics. Buddhism protects from extremes, correct application of Buddhism does not lead to extremes but frees from it.

  24. This article is just one more in the lies that WSS has introduced. I understand from India that this stupid rumor has been circulating in India for many years. Of course, there is no evidence, so it is just more malicious gossip and calumny– the type of stuff we have come to expect from those foolish ghost devotees.


  25. A very kind person found this relevant passage of the Yellow Book, which was translated by TYC in 1996:

    The Yellow Book talks about Reting in glowing terms and acknowledges his recognition of the correct Dalai Lama. It says that things only went wrong when Reting took Nyingma and Dzogchen teachings. The episode reads as follows:

    Regent Reting Rinpoche had to suffer punishment with the king’s order. The misfortune was caused by the miraculous power of the Dharma protector great Dorjee Shugden. Let me explain. The fourth Reting Rinpoche, Ngawang Yeshi Tenpai Gyaltsen, offered the entire possession of Reting Ladang to the Tibetan Government and requested His Holiness the 13th Dalai Lama, Thubten Gyatso, not to search for the future Reting reincarnation. But His Holiness Thubten Gyatso returned everything back to the Ladang and asked them to search for the reincarnation. Accordingly the search party found the reincarnation in a simple family in Dakpo. This Rinpoche had made his foot prints on rocks. I saw one in the Reting monastery. One day while his mother was away the soup started boiling and overflowed from the earthen pot. So he closed the pot with his shoe lace. He displayed such miraculous powers while he was only a child. On the advice of His Holiness Thubten Gyatso, he was recognized as the 5th Reting Rinpoche and named Thubten Jampel Yeshi Gyaltsen. He was admitted to Sera Je College where he completed his religious education. When H.H. Thubten Gyatso visited the Reting monastery in the water- monkey year, it seemed that he left some instructions to Reting Rinpoche concerning the governance of the nation.

    His Holiness the Thirteenth Dalai Lama passed away in the water-bird year. For about two months the Prime Minister and the Kashag held the responsibility of the Government. After that the General Assembly nominated the Reting Rinpoche, Gaden throne Holder Yeshi Palden and Yongzin Phurchok Jamgon Rinpoche for the regency. The Reting Rinpoche’s name was confirmed with traditional tests were done in front of Lord Avaloketeshvara in the Potala Palace. Accordingly he was enthroned as the Regent on the 10th day of the first month of the wood-dog year. Thus he held the responsibility to head the Gaden Phodrang, the Tibetan Government. He took particular interest in the construction of the tomb of the thirteenth Dalai Lama and the search for the next reincarnation. He personally went to the precious lake and saw the visions which gave clear signals of the reincarnation. He then recognized and enthroned the right reincarnation of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Those were indeed some of his wonderful deeds.

    On the fourth day of the tenth month of the earth-hare year, the Reting Rinpoche did the hair cutting ceremony of His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama. In the last month of that year, he resigned from the post of regency after seven years of service. He had the traditional responsibility to uphold pure Kadampa tradition. His own monastery was the seat of Dromton Gyalpai Jungne. Moreover since the first Reting Rinpoche, Trichen Ngawang Chokden, tutor of His Holiness Kelsang Gyatso, the subsequent reincarnations preserved and propagated pure Gelug tradition. Many illustrious Gelug masters including Je Phaphongka exhorted and persuaded him to maintain and promote the stainless tradition of the great Lama Tsongkhapa. But the Reting Rinpoche did not pay any heed and he sought a number of hidden-treasure teachings of the Nyingma order from Tsenyi Tulku of Chamdo. He also received full transmission on Dzongchen from Sangye Dorjee. Thus the Reting Rinpoche departed from the tradition of his masters.

    The final misfortune began to show up when the Reting Rinpoche had disagreement with the then Regent, Tadak. The government found evidence that the Reting Rinpoche had plotted against the life of the Regent Tadak. So, Kalon Surkhang Wangchen Gelek and Kalon Lhalu Gyurme Tsewang Dorjee went to the Reting monastery along with their force and arrested the Reting Rinpoche. Headed by Tsenyi Tulku, many monks from the Sera Je college revolted against the Tibetan government with arms. As the tension grew between the Sera Je College and the government, the latter increased its force and an intense fighting continued for days. Under the command of Kalsang Tsultrim, the government army fired at the Reting monastery and cause much destruction.

    When the Reting Rinpoche and his friend Khardo Tulku was interrogated by the General Assembly, the latter confessed that they were guilty. The Reting Rinpoche also acknowledged his mistakes and pleaded for a chance to confess to the Regent himself. The appeal was sent through the Kashag with the endorsement of the General Assembly. But the appeal was rejected. The Reting Rinpoche was kept in Sharchen Chog under tight security with the officials, Lhungshar Orgyen Namdol and Rupon Kalsang Damdul in command. While he was in confinement, he suddenly passed away in the night on the 17th of the third month. No outsider had any knowledge of the cause of his death.

  26. Dear DStruth, even if it were not the “real” Dalai Lama, still he is an amazing and high realised masters whose benefit to sentient beings and the world is similar to that of the Buddha. I have deeply respect and faith into the qualities of this holy man. Seeing the real existing qualities of an object is actual what faith is. There is no blindness involved in this.

    But seeing qualities were there are no qualities or denying qualities of an object which has qualities is what is called wrong view. And wrong view will lead of course to negative emotions and negative actions.

    We can all look to Je Tsongkhapa’s advice:

    As Tsongkhapa stated, those who have not the three defining characteristics of a proper qualified vessel of the Mahayana (being non-partisan = “being free from have attachment for your own religious system and hostility toward others'”, having intelligence = “the mental force to distinguish between correct paths of good explanation and counterfeit paths of false explanation”, and diligence) will see qualities were there are no qualities and were there are qualities one will see faults.

    Without having the three qualifications of a student “you are not fit to listen to the teachings” and “If they are incomplete, you must make an effort to obtain the causes that will complete them before your next life. Therefore, know these qualities of a listener. If you do not know their defining characteristics, you will not engage in an investigation to see whether they are complete, and will thereby ruin your great purpose.”

    Maybe you check the issue of being non-partisan. A teaching I never heard in NKT but which Je Tsongkhapa stresses a lot.

    So you check yourself, we check us.
    Best Wishes.

  27. BJ a member of the New Kadampa Survivor Forum published today this:

    Politics Religion and Reting Rinpoche

    A little additional info might be useful. In the early 1970s the Dalai Lama asked his teachers if he could take Nyingma teachings, expecially on the Guhyagarbha tantra from the nonsectarian teacher Khunu Lama Tenzin Gyaltsen. He was warned by Ling Rinpoche that people said that this spirit kills Gelugpa lamas that take Nyingma teachings. The Dalai Lama apparently then received a letter from Trijang Rinpoche and Zemey Tulku warning him not to take Nyingma teachings and reminding him of what happened to Reting Rinpoche. The Dalai Lama went on to take the teachings and also decided to have Nyingma practices become part of the ritual calendar of his monastery.

    Zemey Tulku published his ‘Yellow Book’ to back up his warning against to the Dalai Lama. It also served to keep Gelugpas away from the Nyingma practices performed at Namgyal monastery which the Dalai Lama had seen as imporant for the future of Tibet as they were thought to strengthen the relationship between the Tibetan Government in Exile and the traditional protectors put in place by Padmasambhava in the 8th century.

    The Dalai Lama first advised against the worship of this spirit after the Yellow Book was published.

    An excerpt of the Yellow Book has been published here:

  28. Dorje Shugden Truth,

    Publishing of a baseless rumour without sources or facts, by an author who refuses to put their name to the allegations (possibly because they are libelous), does not truth make….

    GKG and NKT have positioned themselves as the righteous warriors against HHDL and the Tibetan establishment. The pride (one of the defilements), lack of patience and inability to use textual sources and verifiable evidence to back up their accusations is not the way of Tsongkhapa, or of Buddhists.

    Certainly, you don’t think voicing a ridiculous accusation without sources makes it true, do you?

    “even though you have no evidence to prove that the Dalai Lama is not a fake.”

    Please don’t insult my intelligence, your side has presented no evidence other than the ridiculous article that lists no sources or eyewitnesses.

    The sources in support of HHDL have already been listed:

    Mullin, Glenn, The 14 Dalai Lamas
    Wangdu, Khemey Sonam (2000). “Discovery of the Fourteenth Dalai Lama. An Eyewitness Account”
    Pema, Jetsun Tibet:My Story
    Scorcese (Film) Kundun
    Avedon, John In Exile From the Land of Snows

    We have from you one article with no quoted sources or publication dates, no eyewitnesses who are willing to corroborate, vehement anti-Muslim rhetoric, and nasty superstitious assertions that two Tibetan masters aged eighty died because of HHDL rather than old age and the journey over the mountains in exile.

    Why should we change our view in light of such a flimsy peace of vengeful, rumour mongering journalism?

    And these accusations fly in the face of devotion to Trijang Rinpochey, who advocated Tenzin Gyatso as the rightful Dalai Lama and who you claim is your lineage guru.

    The burden of proof, and karma of your lineage, is on you, not us.

    “Are you telling me that there are some truths that are not acceptable?”

    No, I am telling you that such accusations need to have serious corroborating evidence, eyewitness accounts and verifiable sources. Otherwise, you undermine the stability and sanctity of the Tibetans in exile, Tibetan Buddhism, and the Sino-Tibetan peace negotiations, for nothing more than vengeful, Islamophobic rumours.

  29. dorjeshugdentruth says:

    Hello Khedrup,

    Certainly, you don’t think voicing a ridiculous accusation without sources makes it true, do you?

    Because of the libel of the Dalai Lama and his followers repeating baseless allegations for the past ten years (since the Newsweek article in 1997), Shugden practitioners are seen to be a cult, and the NKT by extension. If a lie is repeated enough times it becomes the truth. I have no idea whether this present Dalai Lama is false or not, but certainly the WSS would not publish this information on their website without being confident of its truth, so we shall see.

    Now the ‘baseless rumours’ shoe is on the other foot. I think it’s called karma for attacking a spiritual tradition for such a long time. You reap what you sow. I think HH has some explaining to do.

    As for your sources proving that the Dalai Lama isn’t fake, you are quoting a hollywood film (Kundun) as evidence? Come on Khedrub, you must be able to do better than that! Most films are fiction or based on myths, maybe that one is too. It’s clear from the WSS article that they are claiming that the truth has been covered up for forty years so why should any of the other sources be valid? They could just be repeating TGIE spin which they believe to be true. According to Shamar Rinpoche, the prediction letter given by the 16th Kamarpa to Tai Situ Rinpoche is forged, so allegations have already been made that through the deception of those searching for reincarnation candidates for high lamas, the wrong person has been chosen. This is nothing new and it shows the flaws in the Tibetan tulku system.

    Also, please don’t play the islamophobia card because it’s completely baseless. There’s no insult to muslims in any of this and no intention to be insulting to muslims. The present Dalai Lama came from a muslim family,that’s simply a fact. Taktser is a muslim village. He was nicknamed ‘the saffron-robed muslim’ which is also true and what’s insulting to muslims about that?

    The Dalai Lama started this by creating a schism in the Sangha and defaming Dorje Shugden practitioners baselessly, now the chickens have come home to roost. Since he started it he could also end it. If he knows that what WSS is saying is true then it was foolish of him to ban the practice of Dorje Shugden – people in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.

    I am genuinely sorry if this is causing suffering to the Dalai Lama’s disciples but there is no way that those who are fighting this ban on Dorje Shugden can accept the destruction of Je Tsongkhapa’s tradition. Shugden practitioners are currently ‘the jews of Buddhism’, a persecuted minority for no real reason. The Dalai Lama has shown contempt for the spiritual tradition that Trijang Rinpoche and Ling Rinpoche brought him up in. Trijang was like a father to him. He was so fortunate to have such qualified Teachers and this is how he repays them? It is quite shameful and something needs to change. It seems that there may be quite a few ‘skeletons in the cupboard’ at TGIE, all of which will bring future problems to the Dalai Lama. As the Dalai Lama said of the ban on Dorje Shugden:

    ‘There will be no change in my stand. I will never revoke the ban. You are right. It will be like the Cultural Revolution. If they (those who do not accept the ban) do not listen to my words, the situation will grow worse for them. You sit and watch. It will grow only worse for them.’

    I think that now things can only grow worse for the Dalai Lama and I’m sad about that.

    All the best to you.

  30. “I think that now things can only grow worse for the Dalai Lama and I’m sad about that.”
    On the contrary, you seem to be rejoicing.

    “As for your sources proving that the Dalai Lama isn’t fake, you are quoting a hollywood film (Kundun) as evidence?”
    Amongst 5 other books and several other sources mentioned countless other times on this website and others, of which you must be aware. On the other hand, your side has posted no sources and no author for the dubious allegations. The burden of proof is on you, who made the baseless allegations. We have yet to see any documentation.

    “Shugden practitioners are currently ‘the jews of Buddhism’, a persecuted minority for no real reason.”
    Another patent exaggeration trying to use the death, imprisonment and murder of millions of people in order to raise the urgency of your cause in the minds of the uninformed. Even the most militant of Shugdenpas, like the PRC supporter Kundeling (see France 24 for documentation of his support of China), never claimed any Shugdens have been murdered or imprisoned, such completely inaccurate parallels do no good for your case.

    Finally your last quote has no documentation, recorded source or testimony. Only the claims of the author of the Indian Shugden society’s website. An author whose students, I might add, NKT sued a few years ago for a dispute in ownership regarding a castle.

    “I am genuinely sorry if this is causing suffering to the Dalai Lama’s disciples but there is no way that those who are fighting this ban on Dorje Shugden can accept the destruction of Je Tsongkhapa’s tradition.”

    I have yet to see a plausible argument of how Shugden protects Tsongkhapa’s tradition, apart from the vicious stories in the yellow book about sickness and death suffered by Gelugs who practice other teachings. You say “your experience indicates otherwise”, but Wahabbi Muslims and Pentecostal Christians use this line. The bottom line is, Shugden cannot be defended through reliance on any sutras, shastras, or texts of Tsongkhapa.

    “This is nothing new and it shows the flaws in the Tibetan tulku system.”
    On this point we agree, as does the Dalai Lama, who has proposed a gradual phasing out of the tulku system on several teaching occasions where I have been present.

    “The Dalai Lama started this by creating a schism in the Sangha and defaming Dorje Shugden practitioners baselessly”
    We have provided countless historical accounts and documents that indicate this problem goes back hundreds of years, which you have conveniently chosen to ignore. Your assertion this dispute began with HH Dalai Lama is a baseless fabrication you use to justify your campaign of rumour mongering.

    “Also, please don’t play the islamophobia card because it’s completely baseless. There’s no insult to muslims in any of this and no intention to be insulting to muslims.”

    We had a Muslim visitor to an interfaith gathering recently. I showed him your publication, and he found it extremely offensive “Why bring Muslims into this?” “If it is true, why does being born into a Muslim family make the Dalai Lama bad?” So, please, don’t tell me that White Buddhist converts have the right to tell Muslims how to feel about the language you use in your publications.

    “It’s clear from the WSS article that they are claiming that the truth has been covered up for forty years so why should any of the other sources be valid?”

    C’mon, would their claims stand up on the debating yard? They have quoted no sources, it is ironic here that you criticize the books listed – at least we’ve listed the books and the authors. WSS has done nothing of the kind. Its political aims are clear, to foster rumours in order to force the Dalai Lama to re-introduce Shugden into monasteries where the vast majorities of monks don’t want it.

    The latest article says little about Shugden and does nothing to assist Shugden monks in India. All it does is feed the flames of animosity between the two parties. How ironic when you say you are looking for an agreement!

  31. Finally, you show no appreciation for the bigger picture as to what this will do. PRC is loving this campaign, of which you are well aware at Chinese state television has carried the Kelsang Pema interview, among others. IN addition, a destabilizing of Tibetan society at this crucial juncture could lead the young people into an ill conceived and doomed from the beginning armed uprising against PRC.

    Your lack of consideration of the historical and political implications this could have for the entire Tibetan issue shows your examination of the dispute has not gone beyond reading the writings of Kelsang Gyatso and Kundeling Losang Yeshe.

  32. “I have yet to see a plausible argument of how Shugden protects Tsongkhapa’s tradition….”

    In fact, Khedrup, Pabhongkha and Shugden have done more harm to the Gelug tradition than any Nyingma, Sakya, or Kagyu polemicist…

  33. I have a question: if Shugden is such a major deity, why does he not appear in the Beijing (Gelug) 300 icons, not appear in the 500 (Gelug) icons of Narthang, not present in the Pantheon of the Mongolian Kangyur (509 Gelug images), in fact Lokesh Chandra’s Buddhist Iconography has, with some duplication, in total 2,503 images…no Shugden whatsoever. Too minor to include it seems, so what is the big stink about jettisoning a marginal and insignificant mascot?

  34. Dear dorjeshugdentruth,

    I personally found the “saffron robed muslim” remark extremely offensive. I sent e-mails across the world asking people to join me in asking for this remark to be removed and received one sympathetic response from Switzerland! The EPC at a Centre there said that he felt sorry for me, and supported my call for the remark the be removed!

    I also sent a number of increasingly shrill e-mails to The NKT office, and WSS, including one in which I said that if the remark wasn’t removed I would be conducting my own protests in which I would be chanting “LOVE DORJE SHUGDEN, HATE ISLAMAPHOBIA” lol!!! I received no response.

    When I arrived at the Albert Hall Protest I found that everyone admitting the protestors had been told that I should not be allowed to attend, and so I was told to go away.

    After getting quite angry I eventually decided to walk around the protest and to try to speak to Pema. I asked her if I could please attend our protest, as I felt extremely supportive of our cause, and that my only concern was that some of the written material was “perhaps a bit unskilful.”

    She allowed me to do so on the condition that I stand right at the front with the Gen-las which I found a bit embarassing. Ironically enough people then came up to me thinking I was an official representative of WSS!!!

    After this at the Spring Festival the NKT Secretary had a word with me and told me that the tone and content of some of my e-mails had been inappropriate and begged me to stop sending more on this issue. A request that I obviously agreed to.

    Whether this remark is “Islamaphobic” or not is a point that could be argued either way. It is factually the case that people from Muslim backgrounds within the NKT itself, people who are friends with them, such as myself, and people who simply wanted the WSS to present itself as respectfully as objectively as possible, found this remark upsetting.

    I find it entirely credible also at that the Muslim man that Khedrup met also considered this remark to be offensive.

    I would only like to add to the above that I’m not necessarily proud of my behaviour regarding this issue. However, I really couldn’t help myself on account of my personal friendship with people from Muslim backgrounds within the tradition, my commitment to making positive efforts to improve relations between Muslims and non-Muslims, my commitment to a happy and peaceful resolution to the Arab-Israeli conflict, and so on. All of these came together in my (deluded?) mind to make this an issue which I felt I had to speak clearly on.

    Also, I have no hard feelings towards anyone within WSS, who were all subsequently very nice to me.

    Having calmed down a bit on this issue I would say that I more-or-less agree with the remark made by one commentator that discussing whether WSS uses “right speech” is a bit like firemen arguing about who gets to hold the end of the hose while the house burns down!!! I can accept that point of view because the wording we use, even if unskilful, is insignificant compared to the issue itself.

    What I find difficult to do is to defend the remark itself, which sounds like an insult however you look at it! Maybe insulting DL is fair play in the circumstances, maybe bringing his Muslim background into it is of no significance and actually helps in some way, however, I think I would find it extremely difficult to defend this point of view in open court.

    I am presently starting a Social Work degree course and will be studying anti-discriminatory practice as part of it. The literature on this subject states explicitly that something should be considered discriminatory not only if the words or actions really are discriminatory, but also if they could be considered as such. In a world rife with very real Islamaphobia the “saffron robed Muslim” remark was an extraordinary statement for us to make, and many of my friends within the NKT think so also.

    I can only express complete sympathy with everything that Khedrup has said on the subject of this remark.

    Best Wishes,


  35. For myself and those who would like to follow the wisdom of the holy masters:

    Thirty Pieces of Advice From the Heart
    By Gyalwa Longchenpa

    Twelfth Advice

    One engages in controversies, defending one’s point of view and
    contradicting the other’s thinking thus to preserve the purity of the Teachings.
    But in such a way one induces impure thoughts.
    To remain silent is my advice from the heart.

    Thirteenth Advice

    Thinking one is rendering service,
    one support in a partisan way one’s Guru’s lineage and philosophical views.
    But to praise oneself and belittle others ripens one’s attachments and hatred.
    To leave these things is my advice from the heart.


    I closed the blog and wish all all the best.

  36. all of this is so sad, all of this posts full of hatred, ignorance and divise speech, it breaks my heart. as a non-buddhist who understands boths sides of the argument I can tell that non of you are acting in accordance to the way Buddha would like us to. I practice buddhism, but I will never label myself, nor take sides…. that is not the buddhist way. transforming adversity, controling the mind, and sincere practice is what the buddha expects from the people who practices his teachings. How buddhist are any of you when you take sides, with wisdom there are no sides…. Non of you are wise. Kelsang Gyatso is not against the dalai lama, he is just againts the ban of shugden, as people who practice freely whatever you like in wherever you are, you should support free religious practice. to be non-sectarian means to respect ALL spiritual traditions…. when the dalai lama encourages people to discriminate other human beings due to his religious beliefs, he is sectarian, and non buddhist. full stop. any person with open eyes can see that, regardless of whatever and whoever. discouraging a practise and encouraging people to discriminate other humans because of that practise is tirany…. all non buddhits can see that.

  37. @V
    sounds quite NKT-like ;-)

    As a non-Buddhist you condemn Buddhists of being unwise, and you seem to have a better understanding of Buddhism than Buddhists? Very interesting.

    Kelsang Gyatso is against the Dalai Lama, and Kelsang Gyatso is against the “ban” of Shudgen worship. From KG’s perspective the Dalai Lama is a mere (non-religious) politician who wants to get control over all Tibetan Buddhists. This has been stated by GK himself. His and NKT’s perspective is that HHDL is a ‘impure’ Buddhist, because he ‘mixes Dharma with politics’.

    According to your understanding also NKT “is sectarian, and non buddhist” because they “encourage people to discriminate other human beings due to their religious beliefs”: they attack people who see Shugden as a harmful spirit (Gyalpo) as “Liars” and “Hypocrites” and non-Buddhists.

    So were is your “not taking sides”?

    Discrimination between what is constructive and what is destructive is what Buddhism is all about (on the conventional level.) It is expected that those with intelligence, the wise masters, offer their view on controversial subjects.

    From the point of view of most Tibetan Buddhists to state that worshipping a Gyalpo as a Buddha is against Buddhist principles and wrong, is based on discriminating wisdom but is no discrimination. It is just a view or an ‘insight’. However, for others, especially Shugden followers, this view is plain wrong.

  38. It really doesn’t make any sense that people would argue that HH the Dalai Lama has no spritual qualifications because of questions surrounding his selection or rejection of his teachers’ teaching. If people find value in what he is teaching, that should be enough. If they don’t, nobody is forcing them to accept his teachings. I understand he has gotten caught in a few lies over the years, particularly about his relationship to Western intelligence agencies, but it is easy to understand why he accepted their assistance, and why he would want to keep it secret.

    As oppressive as China is today, it was many times worse during the 50s, 60s, and 70s. How could anyone blame HH the Dalai Lama for wanting to free his people from such brutality? I really think the WSS does a disservice to the Tibetan people by making a major issue of this, and their timing is particularly bad.

    If the WSS wants to worship Dorje Shugden, they can do so, they just won’t be in communion with mainstream Tibetan Buddhism. If they don’t accept HH the Dalai Lama’s authority, that’s fine. Religions often split into multiple denominations, and HH the Dalai Lama is not going to launch an Inquisition to force compliance. It really seems to me that the WSS is attempting to force HH the Dalai Lama to reintegrate Shugden worship into his sect, or undermine his authority within the Gelug Sect. The WSS might not like it, but he IS the head of the Gelug Sect, so if he decides that worshipping Shugden is inappropriate, the matter is settled. The WSS should just go away and worship as they see fit, and stop trying to force their views on everyone else.

  39. this page is nonsense, better leave it then trying to clarify the sane(in their own world) people….

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