Kadampas in everyday life

As it says on the homepage of our website, the aim of the NKTis to introduce practical methods that can help people of all backgrounds solve problems and find happiness. As Geshe Kelsang Gyatso, the Founder of the NKT, says:

“Our intention in teaching Dharma is not just to spread Buddhism. We are trying to help the people of this world by giving them special methods to solve their daily problems and to achieve the permanent happiness of liberation. In itself, the flourishing of Buddhadharma is not important unless it benefits others. This is the main purpose of Buddhism.”

Many thousands of people who visit NKT~IKBU Centers worldwide each year, receiving teachings and meeting practicing Kadampas, will attest to this.

There are also some short internet teachings that give a sense of the accessibility of Kadampa Buddhism available on the main Kadampa website.

There is a growing number of personal blogs by Kadampa Buddhist practitioners talking about how they integrate Kadampa Buddhism into their daily lives and use it to solve their own and others’ problems.

Also, on a few NKT Center websites you can find questionnaires of Kadampa students who talk about how they first got interested in Kadampa Buddhism and then answer some interesting questions. For example: Meditation in San Francisco Questionnaires (since 2006)

Interviews  on the main Kadampa site also give a sense of the range of Kadampas and how they use Kadampa Buddhism to transform their daily lives.

These internet teachings, blogs and so on* offer a small taste of a large variety of NKT students from all different walks of life. Tens of thousands of Kadampa Buddhists are scattered all around the world, East and West – some living in Centers, most living outside and working regular jobs – and all doing their best to integrate Buddha’s teachings into daily life to find inner peace, control their minds, and help others.

We hope to see many more representative Kadampa blogs, interviews and so on in the coming months and years.

If you have any helpful or inspiring experiences you’d like to share, please feel free to post them to the comments section of this article.

(*Please note that New Kadampa Truth does not take responsibility for the contents of unofficial blogs etc.)


10 Responses to Kadampas in everyday life

  1. james carstairs says:

    This seems to be more about PR than genuine issues , why are you doing this?

  2. newkadampatruth says:

    Thank you for asking James. It is because genuine issues are not all mistakes or complaints. I know we say in the world that no news is good news, but truthfully it is both more balanced and realistic to mix the good news in with the bad. It gives a bigger picture.

    This does not mean that problems are not being identified and addressed — they should be, and they are. However, sharing positive experiences of the NKT can help prevent people from developing an exaggeratedly bad impression of the entire NKT. With an exaggerated perception of faults, it is hard to solve problems because it is hard to identify their causes accurately.

  3. james carstairs says:

    Thanks for the reply , but surely there are other places for that on the internet?
    Being the cynic i am , all the comments after this are just going to be seen as sycophantic are they not?

  4. newkadampatruth says:

    Ha ha! For the cynic, yes they probably will. Not everyone is cynical though 🙂

    (For your other point, yes, and this article is simply drawing attention to those other places on the Internet.)

  5. Robert Thomas says:

    Well for my part I think if the site is new kadampa truth – and it’s dealing with the truth of people’s experience then it should, to be honest, show all aspects. And this one post really emphasising the positive, amongst all others which, let’s say, less clear. Seems most appropriate to me. Especially as it’s given me a chance to read some very moving stories on the blog links that I think can remind all good people, not just NKT what preciousness and potential and difficulty life offers.

    Besides, it’s nice to have some Christmas cheer 🙂

  6. Wisdom Moon says:

    Rejoicing in the beauty of Kadampa Buddhism is not being sycophantic. There are thousands of people who are having genuine, profound spiritual experiences of Je Tsongkhapa’s teachings by practising Kadampa Buddhism, we mustn’t forget this in the slew of negative comments about the NKT. Of course there are issues to deal with, but we are in samsara, so problems are inevitable. I am aware that some people have had bad experiences living in centres, etc and I feel sorry that their experiences might tarnish their view of the teachings, which are absolutely incredible.

    I can’t help but be enthusiastic about Lamrim, Lojong and Vajrayana Mahamudra as they are exhibited in the good example of most Kadampa practitioners.

  7. Ray says:

    Yep, Wisdom Moon, you’ve nailed it for me. Kadampa Buddhism is incredible, full of common sense, and it works. There are a ton of amazing people out here in the world practicing it — I’ve met Kadampas running homeless shelters, offering free legal aid, helping in townships, teaching in schools, healing, nursing, volunteering in animal shelters, etc etc. Their good example will at some point be noticed by the wider community, especially if some of them start blogging about their experiences?!

  8. Fi says:

    I wonder if part of the problem some have with the NKT is that a number of people both in and out of the NKT have a (I believe) misconception that all “real” Kadampas do is hang out at NKT centers, and that all who are not actively teaching, administrating or on a full time study program are somehow not as “virtuous” or Kadampa-ey as those who are, even if they are doing great stuff at work and at home.

  9. QG says:

    The future of any tradition depends on the people who will join its community of practitioners. Do a web search on the NKT and you’ll find two kinds of responses: some people opposed to the NKT saying many negative things; and many positive things said by the NKT itself.

    Oddly missing are positive comments from the present community of practitioners themselves.

    This gives the mistaken impression that the only people who think any good of the NKT are those few who officially represent it, and one is perhaps left to guess that everyone else must quietly disagree.

    How inspiring it would be to see positive comments posted around the web by those who practice these teachings on how what they’ve learned has benefited them in their daily lives. This would give a chance for people new to Dharma to read about personal examples they might feel a closer connection with, and so be encouraged to learn more and maybe even one day join them.

    Since no tradition could have any future if its own community didn’t freely choose to speak openly and positively about it, hopefully more Kadampas will do so!

  10. newkadampatruth says:

    A sense of proportion

    In December 2010 the Survivors celebrated their 1000th member. While it would be wonderful if there were no survivors at all because everyone continued to enjoy their experiences within the NKT, it is worth getting this figure into proportion.

    * On the Tampa Bay Florida Facebook page alone, servicing one of the NKT’s medium-sized Centers, there are 1000 followers.
    * Teachers in New York, Texas, Brazil, Mexico and other places each week have audiences of hundreds. It is impossible to say exactly how many students attend NKT Centers every week, but it is certainly thousands.
    * Each International Festival attracts thousands of attendees.
    * Dharma Celebrations worldwide each typically attract hundreds of attendees.
    * Several hundred members of the Survivors’ group are still Kadampa practitioners who are just checking what is being said about them.
    * The vast majority of Survivors never post anything.

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