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Clarifying Gendün Chöpel

2

Comments

  • federicafederica Seeker of the clear blue sky... Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator
    @Sile, the link won't download for me either....there's a 'breakdown in communication' somewhere along the (virtual) line....
  • SattvaPaulSattvaPaul South Wales, UK Veteran
    edited July 2012
    works for me... I guess @Sile could attach it as a file to a post.. if that's allowed.
  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    Yep - it's freaking out for me, too (the link). See what I can do...I d-loaded a copy so if I can figure out a way to share that (Google docs maybe?)...you can also buy it as an eBook...about $13.
  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    OK, now it loaded fine:

    http://hk.plm.org.cn/e_book2011/xz-44017.pdf

    Is it just that multiple people are accessing it now, possibly?
  • federicafederica Seeker of the clear blue sky... Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator
    Got it now...... :)
  • SileSile Veteran
    Oh good!
  • VastmindVastmind Memphis, TN Veteran
    edited July 2012
    Im going to keep trying. Maybe ill leave the check-out line and go look around
    until the crowd clears. ;) Still nothing here.

    After all this though, I will still pay the money online for a hard copy,
    wait, maybe after the conclusion i reach...hahaha
  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    While the Chinese site is having trouble, here is a link to the copy I downloaded - I'm hosting in my Dropbox. It's a link to a folder called "NewBuddhist," and the pdf is called "Tibetan Arts." It's only about 1MB.

    https://www.dropbox.com/sh/gpxoc72n50wdl3t/tHptLtRFG-

    It's already being hosted in the public domain at this point, in China or HK, but I'll remove it from my Dropbox in a few days just in case.
  • VastmindVastmind Memphis, TN Veteran
    edited July 2012
    The damn craving has taken over..... :grumble:
    Im going over to read...now!
    Dropbox is working great!
    Thanks again!
  • SileSile Veteran
    Glad it's working. I think the book pretty much speaks for itself.
  • VastmindVastmind Memphis, TN Veteran
    edited July 2012
    There I have it.
    As far as Age.....

    pg 157.....
    "A female who is twelve years and younger iscalled a juvenile. She should be given combs,honey, pastries, etc. She should be told stories ofthe pleasures of kissing."

    The treats are not described here as romantic. Yes, Ddisney tells us princess stories

    much younger age.

    he then says.....13-25......anyway, nothing seems 'off to me', or cant be explained
    about the age 'reccomendations'

    Marriage, keeping up a house, keeping regular sex with the hubbie....he says...

    "A male at the age of sixteen is pubescent and atage twenty-four is complete. A female at the ageof thirteen is pubescent and at the age of sixteenis complete. Therefore, a male of twenty-fouryears and a woman of sixteen or eighteen are ata time suitable for sex. They may keep a homefrom that age."

    THAT depends on alot of things !!!!!!

    The book so far?
    The view is from a man, so what I might have "beef" with is,
    some of the techniques us Ladies...might want a little different. Just
    be open. lolololol. And the book says that a woman of my age you should listen to what she says.....Loved that part!
    All disclaimers apply for time, enviroment, location- all
    things that paved that "view" at the time. Life was MUCH different, back then.
    Im continuing the read......

    May we all share compassion love that can come from
    physical touch. May we all continue to communicate openly with
    the one we share our bodies with. May we 'satisfy' with more than
    just the physical self. :)
  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    For those new to Gendün Chöpel, here is a brief biography:

    image

    Gendün Chöpel was born in Amdo in 1903 and received his early monastic training at Labrang Tashikyil, before travelling to Lhasa and entering Gomang college at Drepung Monastery in 1927. Whilst there, he studied logic and epistemology (pramana), Prajñaparamita and Madhyamika, excelling in debate. He gave up formal studies in 1934, and accompanied Rahul Sankrityayan on a search for rare manuscripts in the monastic libraries of southern Tibet, including that of the great temple of Sakya. For the next twelve years, he travelled extensively throughout the Indian subcontinent, learned Sanskrit, Pali and English, and collaborated with George Roerich in his monumental translation of Gö Lotsawa's Blue Annals. While in India, Gendün Chöpel wrote many original works, including a guidebook to the major pilgrimage places of India, a treatise on eroticism ('dod pa'i bstan bcos) [our Tibetan Arts of Love], a history of Sri Lanka, works on the origin of Tibetan script, and an unfinished work on the early history of Tibet called the White Annals, as well as writings on geography, in which he argued against the traditional presentation of cosmology given in the abhidharma literature. He also wrote on the subject of politics, and became involved with the Tibet Improvement Party, which was based in Kalimpong. After returning to Tibet in 1946, he was arrested on counterfeiting changes, and sentenced to three years in prison. He passed away in 1951, only two years after his release. Perhaps his most famous and controversial work, An Ornament to Nagarjuna's Intent (klu grub dgongs rgyan), compiled from instructions he gave on Madhyamika shortly before he was imprisoned, was published after his death. (Rigpa Shedra)

    http://www.rigpawiki.org/index.php?title=Gendün_Chöpel
  • VastmindVastmind Memphis, TN Veteran
    edited July 2012
    @Sile. Gratitude for this thread.
    Im glad I got the chance to read, and judge for myself.
    The bio you posted after all the discussion was a nice touch.

    He died in 1951. Did he hear you apologize in the OP? :p
    I know, that's another thread . haha
  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    @Sile. Gratitude for this thread.
    Im glad I got the chance to read, and judge for myself.
    The bio you posted after all the discussion was a nice touch.

    He died in 1951. Did he hear you apologize in the OP? :p
    I know, that's another thread . haha
    Actually, even though I should know better, I swallowed the anti-Gendün Chöpel stuff kind of whole until now and had not read up on him at all, because if the disinformation. I did assume he had passed away, since he was born in 1903, but I didn't know until posting the bio that he had died at such a young age. I hope he heard the apology anyway. In his honor, I plan to fact-check the rest of the Röttgen's Shadow of the Dalai Lama. Unpleasant, but I guess it's an exercise in neutralizing frustration, which I expect to feel rising as I dig through the literary garbage. But--life is full of obstacles. Yes, it's depressing to find smear campaigns like this exist, but it's just more samsara. Time for some pre-emptive Vajrasattva practice, lol. And the additional mantra: Never Assume - Always Check Primary Sources.

    A far more detailed bio here:

    http://www.treasuryoflives.org/biographies/view/Gendun-Chopel/3866

  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    And there I went again - assuming. I shouldn't assume the rest of Shadow of the Dalai Lama is literary garbage - I should check and see. As of now, not having read anything but the infamous Gendün Chöpel quote-that-never-was, which I now know to be garbage, I must nonetheless go into it with an open mind. However, I do plan to dig with great focus into the Röttgens, and find out what they're all about, if such a thing is possible. If anyone else is interested, and has time, or even just spots things in passing, feel free to PM me, and maybe when we've gotten a clearer picture of these authors, we can post any relevant/interesting observations of their Buddhism-related writings.
  • cazcaz Veteran United Kingdom Veteran
    If your a student of the Dalai lama @Sile I wouldn't advise digging into him.
  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    If your a student of the Dalai lama @Sile I wouldn't advise digging into him.
    I appreciate your thoughts, @caznamyaw. I have come to feel over the past few years, though, that the activites of the Röttgens of the world must be addressed, especially when one can see that their "work" is clearly affecting those new to Buddhism (and even some not so new.) I have come to feel, after this latest discovery, that it's sort of like leaving a hazardous pit in the path--you can see people keep falling in, and the pit really should be filled in with as much truth as possible.

    Aside from correcting some of the disinformation the Röttgens (and others) are spreading, I believe it can be a worthy and important task to investigate the phenomenon of purposeful disinformation within Buddhism--after all, in the process one is still examining, focusing, testing, analyzing, and learning. I used to feel quite depressed about the existence of such black propaganda--but now I'm trying to graduate, for lack of a better word, to seeing it as "just more obstacles" -- nothing to be afraid of, but definitely something to be addressed, especially when one can see so clearly the harm it's doing.

    I addition, from a simple literary and scientific standpoint, I think it's good to point out blatant factual errors when we encounter them (especially if those errors unfairly smear other authors or people), if we're so inclined. "Buyer beware," and so forth.

    But I do appreciate your advice. The first few paragraphs already have a nasty tone. So maybe this will be more like filling in a porta-potty pit, lol.
  • ThaoThao Veteran
    What year was the Guden book published that you are reading from? There are books out there that prove just what Tibetan Buddhism is, and that go alone with the Trimondi's assessment. I would imagine that you don't even have the 1991 edition of Tibetan art of love. Like I may have said, Benjamin Walker's book Tatrism: It's Secret Principles and Practices says the same as what the Tibetan Art of Love has to say and more.

    The History of Tantra by N,B, Bhattacharyya says the same as well. I got these books because I didn't know whether to believe the Trimondis or not. I learned that they were completely honest in what they are saying.

    The Trimondis were once friends and publishers of the Dalai Lama, and as they said in their interview: However, after many years of extensive study and reflection, we seriously questioned some of the fundamental tenets of the Tantric Buddhism the Dalai Lama professed and eventually became one of his sharpest critics.

    And again as I said, The Commentary of the Kalacakra by a lama who was sent to America by the Dalai Lama is a disgusting book which openly talks about the ritual and using 12 year olds. Kalacakra Tantra (A Commentary On The) by Geshe Lharampa Ngawang Dhargyey

    here is the interview with trimondi: http://www.whale.to/b/trimondi.html

    What are you actually denying here? That 12 year olds are used in the sex rituals or that there are even sex rituals?

    Do you really think you need sex in order to become enlightened?
  • ThaoThao Veteran
    here is one thing i found in the history of tantra book. trimondis give the page number as 125. their page number is different due to how the book was published. they stated that it was on page 125, but i found it on 127, and it states: "if a woman refuses sexual union she must be forced to do so."
  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    here is one thing i found in the history of tantra book. trimondis give the page number as 125. their page number is different due to how the book was published. they stated that it was on page 125, but i found it on 127, and it states: "if a woman refuses sexual union she must be forced to do so."
    What year was the Guden book published that you are reading from? There are books out there that prove just what Tibetan Buddhism is, and that go alone with the Trimondi's assessment. I would imagine that you don't even have the 1991 edition of Tibetan art of love. Like I may have said, Benjamin Walker's book Tatrism: It's Secret Principles and Practices says the same as what the Tibetan Art of Love has to say and more.

    The History of Tantra by N,B, Bhattacharyya says the same as well. I got these books because I didn't know whether to believe the Trimondis or not. I learned that they were completely honest in what they are saying.

    The Trimondis were once friends and publishers of the Dalai Lama, and as they said in their interview: However, after many years of extensive study and reflection, we seriously questioned some of the fundamental tenets of the Tantric Buddhism the Dalai Lama professed and eventually became one of his sharpest critics.

    And again as I said, The Commentary of the Kalacakra by a lama who was sent to America by the Dalai Lama is a disgusting book which openly talks about the ritual and using 12 year olds. Kalacakra Tantra (A Commentary On The) by Geshe Lharampa Ngawang Dhargyey

    here is the interview with trimondi: http://www.whale.to/b/trimondi.html

    What are you actually denying here? That 12 year olds are used in the sex rituals or that there are even sex rituals?

    Do you really think you need sex in order to become enlightened?
    @Thao, Gendün Chöpel's Tibetan Arts of Love is not about ritual sex--it's about common sex between householders, and how they may have a more pleasurable sex life together. It's also about partners honoring each other in general, and pushes the society of his time to elevate women to equal status as men.

    The Trimondi's have clearly lied about Chöpel's writing (he says nothing about offering 12 year olds sweets before ritual sex; on the contrary he says 12 year olds aren't ready for sex), so I will have to look personally at the other books you mentioned before taking the Trimondi's quotes as fact. I highly recommend skipping the Trimondi's assessment altogether, and looking at original sources.

    If you're interested in starting a thread on the author Bhattacharyya, I'd be happy to join the discussion and see what he is all about--I don't currently know his work.
  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    I think it would be good to include the first part of Jeffrey Hopkins' forward to Tibetan Arts of Love:

    "In 1967 near the end of my five-year stay at the Lamaist Buddhist Monastery of America in Freewood Acres, New Jersey, Mrs. Dorje Yudon Yuthok asked me to translate brief notes that later, upon extensive revision and expansion with others' help, became her autobiography, published in 1990 as House of the Turquoise Roof. When we finished, she indicated that an English version of Gedün Chöpel's Treatise on Passion might be useful in the West, and so we began a translation. There were many problematic passages in the 1967 edition of the Tibetan text, and the manuscript sat for twenty-four years among unfinished projects. In the meantime I procured a much better edition (the 1983 reprint of the edited 1969 edition) and in 1991 began a re-translation, which has resulted in this publication.

    Some translations of erotica in the past have suffered from the intrusion of the views of the translators into the text, usually by omitting what is imagined to be sensitive material. The reader can be assured that this translation attempts to be an utterly accurate and all-inclusive (unexpurgated!) rendition of the original."

  • ThaoThao Veteran
    I still have no answer on what year the book tibetan art of love, that you have, was published?

    all one has to do is read the commentary on the kalacakra to know that the trimondis are not lying.

    as to them frankensteining their articles, well, that is how it is done by scholars as well. then if a person wants to know more they buy the reference books. yet when i quote from the kalacakra you (not you personally) claim that i am quoting the trimondis. no one can quote from an entire book; if they did they may has well print an article with just a list of books to read, which is what i have done because no one here believes that my quotes are from me but believe they are from the trimondis.

  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    I still have no answer on what year the book tibetan art of love, that you have, was published?

    all one has to do is read the commentary on the kalacakra to know that the trimondis are not lying.

    as to them frankensteining their articles, well, that is how it is done by scholars as well. then if a person wants to know more they buy the reference books. yet when i quote from the kalacakra you (not you personally) claim that i am quoting the trimondis. no one can quote from an entire book; if they did they may has well print an article with just a list of books to read, which is what i have done because no one here believes that my quotes are from me but believe they are from the trimondis.

    Hello @Thao,

    The version I have been referring to is the one edited by Jeffrey Hopkins, copyright 1992. If you follow the link above to the copy in my Dropbox, you can read the exact one I'm working with if you like, so we can be sure we're talking about the same version. He says also in the preface that he has made his translation an "utterly accurate and all-inclusive" rendition of Chöpel's original.

    When I said "Frankensteining" I was referring to the Trimondi's technique of grabbing separate phrases from different passages and using it to construct a new idea, one that is not that of the author they are (mis)quoting, but then is attributed to that author.

    For example, Chöpel does mention sweets; he says 12 year olds are not interested in sex, but enjoy sharing sweets and romantic stories.

    Not once, anywhere, does Chöpel mention 12 year olds and sex. He is very clear: 12 year olds are not interested in, nor ready for, sex.

    He mentions that 26 year old women should be given passion.

    He does not say anything about extracting the female seed from 12 year olds, nor in this section, called "Stages," does he say anything about extracting female seed from anyone whosoever, nor about "ritual" sex whatsoever.

    The Trimondis created a sentence on their own, and then attributed it to Chöpel, who did not say it.

    I wonder what went through their minds as they were inventing this sentence? Did they have pause for thought, did they wonder if anyone would check?

    Anyone may read the truth for themselves--many authors would be sued for such a thing.
  • ThaoThao Veteran
    it is in your downloaded book on page 135: "Forcibly doing it with a young girl produces se-vere pains and wounds her genitalia; conse-quently, later when giving birth she has difficul-ties. If it is not the time and if copulating wouldbe dangerous for her, churn about between herthighs, and it will come out. In many areas it iscustomary to do so; it quickly promotes a girl'smaturation.Males need to know that they can help females maketheir genitalia ready for penetration:Having covered with ointment the outside of awound up cloth, make a fine, soft point. Everyday raise passion [by tickling the labia]; then putit just into the vagina. Finally the phallus should"

    it will come out refers to her seed.
  • ThaoThao Veteran
    A female who is twelve years and younger is called a juvenile. She should be given combs, honey, pastries, etc. She should be told stories of the pleasures of kissing. From thirteen through twenty-five she is called a youth; she should be kissed and pinched. Getting ac-

    so he didn't lie. this is all in there, and what he wrote was this:

    "Lama Gedün Chöpel, explicitly warns that children can become injured during the sexual act: “Forcingly doing it with a young girl produces severe pains and wounds her genitalia. ... If it is not the time and if copulating would be dangerous for her, churn about between her thighs, and it [the female seed] will come out” (Chöpel, 1992, p. 135). In addition he recommends feeding a twelve-year-old honey and sweets before ritual sexual intercourse (Chöpel, 1992, p. 177)."

    so where have they lied?

  • ThaoThao Veteran
    sex manual? i am sure he got his ideas from a tantric text and just wrote a book on sex for laymembers.
  • ThaoThao Veteran
    they do use young girls in their tantric rituals.
  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    @Thao, as I have mentioned before, Gendün Chöpel's passage on not "forcibly doing it" is not about children, and not about forcing sex onto someone who doesn't want it. It is from the chapter, "Enhancing Female Pleasure," and says that partners may pleasure women by other means when the woman is not ready. Many young couples want to have sex, and it's clear he is cautioning them about doing things in a way that is pleasurable for both partners, instead of only one.

    Gendün Chöpel uses "young girl" to refer to women of many ages. It is true that in the chapter "Enhancing Female Pleasure" he includes advice on how to make first-time sex more pleasurable, which is a very likely time a woman may find sex painful.

    Nowhere in the "young girl" passage does Gendün Chöpel say anything about children; if you read the entire "Enhancing Female Pleasure" chapter, you can see clearly he is talking about female partners in general. "Young girl" raises our eyebrows only because it is less common for us to use "young girl" to refer to women; however, Gendün Chöpel (and many authors of the time) use "young girl" as a term for women of many ages.

    It is impossible therefore, to tell what age Gendün Chöpel has in mind in this paragraph about partners "not forcibly doing it." For his ideas on what ages are appropriate for sex, then, we must rely on what he actually says about stages of development.

    We can clearly see, only 30 or so pages later, on p. 177, that he feels 12 year olds should not have sex, and he only speaks of women and full sex (giving them passion) from the age of 26 years and older. I don't think this means he expects younger women will not have sex, but he makes it clear that 12 year olds should not. For women under 25 years of age, he speaks here only of non-intercourse activity.

    We can see that he does think 16 year old women can be wives; he feels they are mature at 16, whereas a boy is mature at 24; at those respective ages, then, it was appropriate for them, in past times, to establish a home together. Women in my country were married at age 14 in the past, for that matter--it's not just an eastern tradition. Life spans were much shorter in the past, and people got married younger. I think 14 is obviously too young, but I don't fault the generations of the past for following the traditions of their time.

    As for helping virgin women enjoy sex less painfully the first time, I only wish more boyfriends and husbands had that advice at hand! Sex is not dirty--sex is wonderful, and when two partners can have more pleasure instead of less, that's a good thing. If first-time partners went through the very patient series of steps Gendün Chöpel advises, before sex, sex could indeed be far more pleasurable for both.

    The Trimondis were misleading to say it was "children" Gendün Chöpel was speaking about, because he makes it clear elsewhere that children should not have sex, and that "young girl" refers to women of many ages. They lie completely when claiming Gendün Chöpel said 12 year olds should be "fed honey and sweets before ritual intercourse." He did not say that.

    Sorry so long, but I think it's important to clear this up.
  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    I'm curious, too, about "young girl" as opposed to "virgin" in the translation, as many Tibetan words such as "bu mo" mean both "girl" and "maiden" or "virgin." It may not have occurred (even to the Trimondis) to try and create a false scandal out of the passage on p. 135 if the word used had not been "young girl."

    I think it's clear the Trimondis were not positive "young girl" would be scandalous enough; that's perhaps why they felt the need to take the professionally risky move of inserting, out of context, the "12 year olds" enjoying sweets passage, to make it seem as if "young girl" referred to children.

    Even that wasn't enough--they added "before ritual sex" as a final bit of literary crime.

    All this indicates to me their doubt that "young girl" itself was really shocking enough--even the Trimondis know they did not have a case with any of Gendün Chöpel's actual passages, so they invented passages that didn't exist, thus betraying their lack of confidence that the original material was truly scandalous.

    Of all the authors to pick on, you know? I mean, there are plenty of texts in the world which show either no interest in women, or even have a condescending tone to women--of all the guys, they picked on this one who actually shows huge respect and obvious love for women, and was such a outspoken proponent of women's rights.

  • ZeroZero Veteran
    @sile - what do you consider Trimondis' motivation may have been in submitting the inaccurate twist? Does it seem intentional from the overall translation of the work or could it have been their interpretation based on their beliefs or perhaps incorporation of other sources or just mistake?
  • SileSile Veteran
    @sile - what do you consider Trimondis' motivation may have been in submitting the inaccurate twist? Does it seem intentional from the overall translation of the work or could it have been their interpretation based on their beliefs or perhaps incorporation of other sources or just mistake?
    I don't think it's possible to make a case for it being accidental. Their sentence, "In addition he recommends feeding a twelve-year-old honey and sweets before ritual sexual intercourse (Chöpel, 1992, p. 177)" cites a passage that 1) clearly states 12 year olds should not have sex, and 2) makes zero mention of ritual sex for anyone.

    In other words, they had to do a certain amount of deliberate work to fabricate their "misquote," in the sense that they 1) attribute to the author a view completely opposite to his actual, clearly-stated view regarding 12 year olds, and 2) insert a topic (ritual sex) that does not exist anywhere on the page, and is not a party of his treatise on householder sex in general.

    It would be pretty straightforward, on the other hand, to make a libel case.

  • ThaoThao Veteran
    His ideas are not his own but come from tantric texts on how to prepare a young woman to use them in a Tantric framework and in the rituals. He did not think outside of his own teachings. He is also talking about feeding 12 year olds sweets to get them to comply. This also goes along with what N.N. Bhattacharyya says in his book about forcing them if they won't have sex. Using sweets, alcohol, and then force if necessary. The Kalacakra talks about visualizing 12 year olds and then says that in time you will need a real consort.

    What I object to is that children are given to the monasteries, and then they are used without their consent. When they grow older the lamas no longer want them, but neither do men outside of the monastery, and so often they become prostitutes. I have researched this alot, and I think that this should be outlawed.

    If grown men and women desire to join a Tibetan Buddhist religion, and if they know that it involves sex with the lama or another partner, then let them join, but these teachings are held secret from those who join, and they are then str primed by the lamas so that they will one day accept something that they would not have readily accepted when they joined. Or in the case of children, they are just taken. I have talked with exTibetan students who were sexually abused. Tibetans themselves have admitted to giving children to the lamas to raise. If you don't think that this happens, then I can't help it.

    If you think this is what Buddha taught, well, it isn't. I would suggest you read The History of Tantra Religion by Bhattacharyya, and again, The Commentary of the Kalachakra. Otherwise you are just lying about the Trimondis because I happen to know that they are telling the truth. Why? Because I bought several books that they had in their referrence list as well as some on my own. And I have been reading them for over two years, and to be quite honest, they are disgusting. Tantra was first accepted by the lower classes and then seeped into most religions in spite of the initial negative response from it. But what can you expect? All religions have degenerated.
  • Thao, do you happen to have the original text written by Gendun Chopel? I'd say the only way to really know what he did and didn't say in that text is to actually read the original, if you can. It so happens that I can read some classical Tibetan so I'd be interested in obtaining the original.
  • ThaoThao Veteran
    earthsnake. it seems that what sile posted is the 1992 book and it says exactly the same as what trimondis said it did. i ordered the book but i didn't check the date it was written, and when i get it i will come here and post what it said. but if you want it in tibetan, well, i don't have that. wouldn't be able to read it anyway.

    12 year old girls are used according to the kalacakra. that is the book you all should be reading. it is only found on amazon, and it says that no one can read it unless they have been initiated, and if they do, they will go to varja hell. so read at your own risk.
  • I realize there is plenty of weird stuff in the tantras. However, after reading some of his poetry I was under the impression that Gendun Chopel was somewhat unorthodox for his time, more "modern" so to speak. I'm not ready to condemn this man over loosely translated and misquoted "evidence".
  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    earthsnake. it seems that what sile posted is the 1992 book and it says exactly the same as what trimondis said it did
    @Thao, here is what the Trimondis said the 1992 book says:

    "Lama Gedün Chöpel, explicitly warns that children can become injured during the sexual act: “Forcingly doing it with a young girl produces severe pains and wounds her genitalia. ... If it is not the time and if copulating would be dangerous for her, churn about between her thighs, and it [the female seed] will come out” (Chöpel, 1992, p. 135). In addition he recommends feeding a twelve-year-old honey and sweets before ritual sexual intercourse (Chöpel, 1992, p. 177)."

    Here is what the book really says:

    "Forcibly doing it with a young girl produces severe pains and wounds her genitalia; consequently, later when giving birth she has difficulties. If it is not the time and if copulating would be dangerous for her, churn about between her thighs, and it will come out." (Chapter 7, Enhancing Female Pleasure, Chöpel, 1992, p. 177)

    "A female who is twelve years and younger is called a juvenile. She should be given combs, honey, pastries, etc. She should be told stories of the pleasures of kissing.
    From thirteen through twenty-five she is called a youth; she should be kissed and pinched. Getting acquainted with men, she will experience joy. From twenty-six through fifty she is a mature woman. She should be told stories of passion and bitten and pinched and likewise should be given the enjoyment of passion. A woman over fifty should be respected with pleasant and honorific words. Her good advice should be asked for both the short and long-term." (Chöpel, 1992, p. 135).

    A further clarification of Chöpel's view on ages appropriate for sex is given:

    "A male at the age of sixteen is pubescent and at age twenty-four is complete. A female at the age of thirteen is pubescent and at the age of sixteen is complete. Therefore, a male of twenty-four years and a woman of sixteen or eighteen are at a time suitable for sex. They may keep a home from that age." (Chöpel, 1992, p. 158)

    It may easily be understood from this passage that Chöpel feels sex is unsuitable for any woman under the age of 16 or 18.

    One simply cannot make the case that Chöpel advises intercourse for 12 year olds, of either sex; he makes it explicitly clear he does not.

    I'll continue to leave a copy of the 1992 book in my Dropbox for now, for anyone who would like to look at it.




  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    Apologies, all - I've reversed pages 135 and 177 for the citations above - Enhancing Female Pleasure is actually on p. 135, and Stages is on p. 177.

    Note that the Trimondis have taken out the reference to the girl "giving birth." My suspicion is that this omission is very purposeful, as it has the effect of making Chopel's reference appear to possibly be about young children (when in fact it's about girls of child-bearing age), and it obscures some of his tone of obvious concern for the female partner's well-being. In short, it helps make the "quote" (and Chopel) seem somewhat insidious.

  • ThaoThao Veteran
    I feel like you are talking in circles Sile and making a case that isn't there.

    Chopel was a lama. What he knew about sex he learned from the tantras.

    Earthsnake, Chopel wasn't unorthodox for his time. The Commentary of the Kalacakra was written for American audiences by a lama who was sent to the U.S. to teach tantra. He and Chopel think alike. If you can get a hold of other tantras you will see and learn to understand what they are all about. Tantra was preVeda and then ran along side of the Vedas and crept into them. In Buddha's time the tantras infiltrated Buddha's teachings when tantric practioners, not willing to give up their teachings when they became Buddhists, continued to practice them. This is from The History of Tantric Religion.

    The tantras DO NOT Believe that it is unsuitable for 12 year olds to have sex. The younger the better, and by younger I mean 12.

    "The point of this empowerment is to ripen the mind of the trainee. First, one imagines offering a girl, between the ages of 12 and 20, to the vajra master...The vase empowerment is actually given when the imagined girl comes back to the trainee who then enjoys her presence though laughing and foundling her breasts. Together with this, one offers the mandala and prayers to the vajra master and request the empowerments."

    from the Commentary of the Kalacakra. First the visualizations, then a real consort. Consorts are between the ages of 12 and 20.

    The Kalacakra tantra that I have puts monks down if they say that they are too pure to have sex and drink alcohol.

    Here is some more from it, page 160: "The five ambrosias are literally substances such as excrement, urine and so forth. A highly realized yogin is able to transform them and actually experience great bliss." And so the yogin actually eats excrement, drinks urine, and vaginal fluids, whether blood or otherwise. This is all in the book that I mentioned.

    and this: "Forbidden sexuality, including incest and adultery can and indeed must be practiced. Meats like beef, taboo to the Hindu, must be eaten. Alcoholic liquor, so hateful to the orthodox must be drunk. A tantric precept says, `By drinking and drinking and drinking again, rolling on the ground, rising and still drinking, a man saves himself from rebirth." (from Tantrism, Its Secret Principles and Practices)

    The above book also says that some practice include eating feces, driking menstral blood and eating corpses.
  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    @Thao, I respect that you are passionate about this topic. All the more reason, then, to carefully distinguish between what the Trimondis say, and what the original sources really say. In the case of this thread, we have shown clearly that the Trimondis lied about Gendun Chopel. They have utterly misquoted a man, and attributed terrible things to him which he did not say.

    We must now, certainly, question the other things they say, and if the topic is important to us, check their other allegations, one by one.
  • DakiniDakini Veteran
    EarthSnake, if you're interested in translation questions, or would like to find a copy of the Tibetan original of the book, you could try contacting Jeffrey Hopkins, who translated the book.
  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    Here is Mr. Hopkins' contact info:

    Telephone (Virginia) 434-973-3256
    Telephone (Vancouver) 604-868-2955
    E-mail: jhopkins@virginia.edu
  • Thanks for the contacts, but I don't feel this issue is important enough to bother the man :D Not for me, anyway. By the way, I found the original for sale online somewhere, perhaps it's time to revive my skills.
    Thao, I studied Tibetan language and culture as part of my major at university and I know that much of what you are saying is true. However, we should remain critical and not trust either book blindly if we don't have the original to refer to.
  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    These are the editions I show in my local library - if anyone wants a specific citation checked, please let me know. I rather like the 1967 edition's label, "Study of amorous dalliance." Unfortunately, the "digitized version" mentioned goes to Google Books and HathiTrust pages, neither of which give anything other than the cover.


    1. Author: Dge-ʼdun-chos-ʼphel, A-mdo, 1903-1951.
    Title: ʼDod paʼi bstan bcos bźugs so / Dge-bśes Dge-ʼdun-chos-ʼphel gyis mdzad paʼo.
    Edition: 2d ed.
    Publisher: Delhi : T. G. Dhongthog, 1969.
    Description: 137 p. ; 19 cm.
    Notes: In Tibetan.
    Added title on cover: Ka ma śā stra.
    Also contains Mi-pham-rgya-mtsho’s ʼDod paʼi bstan bcos ʼjig rten kun tu dga baʼi gter.

    2. Author: Dge-ʼdun-chos-ʼphel, A-mdo, 1903-1951
    Title: ʼDod paʼi bstan bcos bźugs so / Dge-ʼdun-chos-ʼphel gyis mdzad paʼo.
    Digitized Versions: View available text online
    Publisher: Ldi-li : [s.n.], 1967.
    Description: 2, 127 p. ; 22 cm.
    Notes: In Tibetan.
    Attached label on t.p.: Study of amorous dalliance by Prof. Gedun Choiphel

    3. Author: Dge-ʼdun-chos-ʼphel, A-mdo, 1903-1951.
    Uniform Title: ʼDod paʼi bstan bcos. Dzongkha
    Title: ʼDod paʼi bstan bcos : Rdzoṅ-khaʼi rtsa ʼgrel / [Mkhan-po Bstan-ʼdzin-dbaṅ-phyug gis źun dag gnaṅ].
    Edition: 1. par theṅs
    Publisher: [Thim-phu : Ke-em-kri Dpe-skrun-khaṅ, 2005.]
    Description: xxxvii, 351 p. ; 23 cm.
    Language Note: In Dzongkha.

    4. Author: Dge-ʼdun-chos-ʼphel, A-mdo, 1903-1951.
    Uniform Title: ʼDod paʼi bstan bcos. English
    Title: Tibetan arts of love / Gedün Chöpel ; introduced and translated by Jeffrey Hopkins with Dorje Yudon Yuthok.
    Publisher: Ithaca, N.Y., USA : Snow Lion, c1992.
    Description: 282 p. ; 22 cm.
    Notes: Translation of: ʼDod paʼi bstan bcos.
    Includes bibliographical references (p. 277-282).

    5. Author: Mi-pham-rgya-mtsho, ʼJam-mgon ʼJu, 1846-1912.
    Title: ’Dod pa’i bstan bcos phyogs bsgrigs / [’Ju Mi-pham daṅ Dge-’dun-chos-’phel gyis brtsams].
    Publisher: [Tibet : s.n., 2008?]
    Description: 135 p. ; 19 cm.
    Summary: Two texts on Tibetan art of love.
    Contents: ’Dod pa’i bstan bcos ’jig rten kun tu dga’ ba’i gter źes bya ba bźugs so / ’Ju Mi-pham gyis brtsams -- ’Dod pa’i bstan bcos źes bya ba bźugs so / Dge-’dun Chos-’phel gyis brtsams.
    Notes: Cover title.
    Language Note: In Tibetan.


  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    Donald S. Lopez Jr.'s 2009 translation, In the Forest of Faded Wisdom, 104 Poems by Gendun Chopel might be a good handbook, for those wanting to get a feel for Chopel's writing style and work with the original sources for Tibetan Arts of Love. All poems in Lopez's book are presented in parallel Tibetan/English translation, including several from the work we are discussing--I didn't know it until reading the article below, but the original "Treatise on Passion" [part of our Tibetan Arts of Love] is written entirely in metrical verse.

    "...what struck me when I was doing research on the life of the ‘Amdo Beggar’ in the 1970s and 1980s was the mischievous delight that emanates from his writings, the roars of appreciative laughter of his audience when reading or reciting his work, and the endless humourous anecdotes I was told about him by all and sundry during my decade of research on his life." (Donald Lopez)

    Full, fascinating article by Heather Stoddard here, including some critical thoughts on Lopez's approach; it would be interesting to compare Lopez's and Hopkins' translations of some of the same passages, after reading her thoughts:

    http://iias.nl/sites/default/files/IIAS_NL56_3031_2.pdf
  • SileSile Veteran
    edited July 2012
    Another woman's thoughts on Mr. Chopel before I head to work...this is from the blog, DRUGMO lives...Tibetan Women, Reflection, Poetry & Reviews:

    "When reading Gendun Chopel’s poetry some of his works might appear a little too ornate for our times (especially his section on devotional poetry) but none of his themes have lost their relevancy in terms of the issues he raised and the perception of societies and people. His writings show a sophistication and development of thoughts that is not only a credit to his own personality, individual experiences, but also to a culture and tradition that had a hand in his metamorphosis as a modern writer and thinker. While he may have been ahead of his time, in this generation there are many Tibetans whose thoughts and views will find comfort in his writings. This is not to detract from his greatness but shows his relevance in the contemporary world of Tibetan history and literature. For those of us especially raised on English language poetry, the book is a great resource and introduction to the uniqueness and beauty of Tibetan poetry in all its various styles. There are many moments when you gasp at the eloquence of Gendun Chopel’s thoughts and you know you have just touched only the tip of what lies underneath- the giant iceberg of Tibetan literature and culture."

    http://drugmo.wordpress.com/2010/03/27/a-reflection-on-my-book-review-in-the-forest-of-faded-wisdom/
  • ThaoThao Veteran
    Thanks for the contacts, but I don't feel this issue is important enough to bother the man :D Not for me, anyway. By the way, I found the original for sale online somewhere, perhaps it's time to revive my skills.
    Thao, I studied Tibetan language and culture as part of my major at university and I know that much of what you are saying is true. However, we should remain critical and not trust either book blindly if we don't have the original to refer to.
    That is why I have several books on the subject EarthSnake. This is also why I know that what the Trimondis are saying is true.
  • ThaoThao Veteran
    what is the problem here? do you believe that 12 year olds girls are not used in the sex rituals? or what? because there are a lot of books out that that say they do.
  • SileSile Veteran
    what is the problem here? do you believe that 12 year olds girls are not used in the sex rituals? or what? because there are a lot of books out that that say they do.
    Hello @Thao,

    In this thread I was wanting simply to point out that Gedun Chopel had been misquoted--that he did not say anything about 12 year olds having sex. And beyond that, then, to look more deeply into his life and writings.

  • ThaoThao Veteran
    I still haven't seen page 177 that the trimondis have quoted from.
This discussion has been closed.