Why refute the Bodhisattva Centre smears?

Someone posted the comment below and and New Kadampa Truth posted the following reply. It has been posted here as an article in case other people are also wondering why New Kadampa Truth is going to the trouble of refuting obvious misinformation against the NKT.

Hi,

Once again, I wonder why so much effort is put into refuting the ‘bodhisattva centre smears’? Without meaning to sound harsh, who cares?! It seems to me very obvious that strong defensive responses create more of an opposition. If there are people with nothing better to do than to make up nonsense about the NKT because they obviously feel a need to defend their egos, point their fingers and cry like babies, lets let them. I do not believe they are powerful or convincing. If people fall prey to their allegations, this is unfortunate, but karma after all. Furthermore- and I say this being a happy Kadampa myself- there have been loads of ‘problems’ and unfortunate events taking place at Bodhisattva Centre and many others over the last 2-3 years. This is human nature, is it not? I see no need to defend the tradition or the centres in the way they are being defended. It will create more separation & opposition.

love, M.xx

From New Kadampa Truth:

Dear M,

Thanks for your comment, you’ve raised some interesting points. It’s certainly true that strong defensive responses create more of an opposition and we’ve seen this since the New Kadampa Truth website went live. This is a good thing – the New Kadampa Truth Team’s intention is to refute all smears against the NKT with the truth. If the more we reply, the more our critics try to find fault with the NKT, and we then reply to those criticisms, eventually we will have publicly answered all points with clear, logical and truthful responses for all to see. There won’t be any more criticism to be levelled at the NKT and then people can make up their own minds about it. The NKT is not afraid to be criticised because we can humbly accept if we have made mistakes – more valid criticism means greater improvement. However, for a variety of reasons there are those who simply want to harm NKT and we need to be uncompromising in rejecting their lies.

The points raised by Carol and other New Kadampa ’survivors’ in their information leaflet contained some misconceptions that needed to be addressed. This drew another response from them with more misconceptions and allegations that needed to be replied to.

Why did we take some much time to reply to the Bodhisattva Centre smears? There are two main reasons:

1. The New Kadampa Truth Team’s main concern is that if a lie is repeated often enough, it becomes accepted as the truth. For example, the Dalai Lama and Robert Thurman have used the word ‘cult’ in relation to the NKT. Even though it is a lie, many people are using this term nowadays and believe it to be the truth even though there is no valid basis for its use. This is what happens when you don’t reply.

2. We’re here to help! Carol’s original document and responses contained misunderstandings about the Western Shugden Society, the NKT and the Shugden issue. If someone who used to be a member of the NKT has such misunderstandings, needless to say there are going to be many people more distant from the issues who lack clarity. Our intention is to shine the light of truth and reason into the dark corners of confusion on a variety of issues for the benefit of everyone. There is so much that needs clarification and we are grateful to Carol for giving us the opportunity to do so. Some of our readers have praised the clarity and comprehensiveness of our responses; we will leave no stone unturned in trying to help everyone to clearly understand the truth.

Best Wishes,
New Kadampa Truth Team

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4 Responses to Why refute the Bodhisattva Centre smears?

  1. Maik says:

    Hi again,

    Thank you for your reply. I understand your point and accept that overused lies can easily be accepted as truth by those who do not know better. I also appreciate that people speak up for themselves or something they stand for.
    I still cannot agree completely however..:-) Of course, it is up to every individual to know and check what their motives are when dealing with smear-refutations or other defenses. I just hope all those involved here and at New Kadampa Truth are questioning themselves all the time. I dare say, a defensive attitude is often an indication of weakness ( I say that merely as a general point that one should maybe consider). I am myself surprised to say the least that some guy called Nathaniel – who wrote a barely understandable, kindergartenesque “letter”- is taken seriously at all, in a public way. Clearly it is a matter of a person with severe problems of his own. If someone would like to help him, they should do so directly, no?
    The world at large does not care. The vast majority of people, even of Buddhists, know nothing of the Dorje Shugden ban (in my opinion; i could be wrong). Nobody cares about Nathaniel, or even self-proclaimed prophets like David Whatshisface from the Survivors.

    I believe in the value, especially in light of the whole ‘situation’, in going back to primal spiritual basics. Buddhas teachings destroy all separations, even towards those who try to separate us from them. My question, in general, remains: Why put so much effort into refuting allegations & posting pictures of our ‘enemies’ on a public website? Because, even if you do not intend these people to be seen as our enemies, I have a strong feeling that in the collective consciousness of the NKT, they are viewed as such.

    We need to remain focused on the actual spiritual path, whatever that is to us, I think!
    With much love & respect,
    Mike

    From New Kadampa Truth

    Dear Mike,

    Thank you for giving us a further opportunity to explain what we are about.

    New Kadampa Truth (and others) did try to help Nathaniel directly and privately. He sent New Kadampa Truth the 31 allegations and said we had until the end of the month to reply to them privately. But well before the end of the month he had posted them publicly in various places on the Internet and people were reading them and, in some cases, developing doubts. Whenever an untruth about the NKT appears publicly, we will refute it publicly. This is not a weakness — it is an accepted procedure for any responsible organization to ward off attacks. If someone writes to us privately with a concern or a complaint, we likewise look into this and reply to them privately. Our wish is always to try and help people personally as much as we can.

    The only enemies of people like myself writing on this site and of NKT practitioners as a whole are the inner enemies of the delusions. Living beings are our kind mothers and the objects of our compassion and love. That Buddhist view has not changed and will never change, or else we have lost the plot. New Kadampa Truth will, however, oppose smears with facts wherever they appear, and we will also let people know who is responsible for these smears to avoid further damage. This also is an accepted procedure for any responsible organization.

    The vast majority of NKT practitioners are not interested in Internet debates but simply continue to practice the Kadampa Dharma of Je Tsongkhapa in their daily lives and help others find a deeper and deeper inner peace. This is the main function and purpose of the NKT and always will be.

    Love,
    New Kadampa Truth

  2. Harry says:

    Hi,

    New Kadampa Truth sez,

    “The vast majority of NKT practitioners are not interested in Internet debates but simply continue to practice the Kadampa Dharma of Je Tsongkhapa in their daily lives and help others find a deeper and deeper inner peace. This is the main function and purpose of the NKT and always will be.”

    This is very true in relation to my own Sangha. That i’m aware of, i’m the only regular at my centre who is interested in these debates. I get really involved in the debates and spend much of my free time reading or posting. Because i get so wrapped up in them, sometimes i end up babbling about them to my friends, but they never really seem that interested. They seem more concerned with applying Dharma to their daily lives than about who is right and who is wrong in the various debates that take place online.

    Few people in my centre are even aware of the names Tenzin Peljor and Namdrol, let alone to be considering them as enemies. Furthermore, I think it is quite clear to us practitioners that these people aren’t our enemies at all. Why? Because first and foremost we are trying to practice Buddha’s teachings, and like NKTruth says our enemies are our delusions. Personally i find debating a great opportunity to let go of my delusions and to hold love in my mind. I have debated with Namdrol who is quite aggressive, and often i notice my anger and my attachment when debating with him. It helps me look at my own mind, and to discern what are my real enemies: others or my delusions???

    Regards,
    Harry

  3. Adam says:

    Dear All,

    just to say really that I agree with the view expressed by New Kadampa Truth, and wish this project the very best.

    Adam

  4. Khechog says:

    Hi NKT Truth people.

    Thanks for the clarity – I find it personally helpful & know other people do to. It’s in the fog of ambiguity that doubts can arise. If posting these refutation’s increases opposition it’s just because the line where the truth is located has been clearly shown, which in turn demarcates any delusions at play more clearly too. The reasonable measured tone of the refutations goes a long way to promoting confidence in what is being said.

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