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Tolerance of crime in the Sangha: idiot compassion?

13

Comments

  • Ah, well, I do wish you a peaceful resolution to your problems. I'd love to hear in a year or so how everything is going for you.

    ESZ123personShoshin
  • @ESZ123 I haven't voiced anything on this thread yet. But really, I seem to agree with the majority consensus here.

    What you were involved with seems awfully cultish to me. You've already taken your concerns to the authorities. You had a bad experience, and suffered financial loss, an attempt on your life, and emotional and mental abuse.

    You got away relatively physically unharmed. I think seeing a therapist would be a good course of action. Wash your hands of it and walk away into the next chapter of your life. And keep your eyes open, you don't want to be sucked into anything like that again, do you?

    I wish you all the best. <3 Metta.

    ESZ123personCinorjerShoshin
  • 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

    @ESZ123 said: ... I'm left with, Is it kind, Is it helpful, Is it necessary?

    Don't forget 'fruitful' and 'worth it'...?

    @ESZ123 said: Oh wait... HH the Dalai Lama should be added to that list.

    So the question bodes being asked again.
    Why waste your time asking us?
    You had already made your mind up. That is evidenced by your constant refutation of everything we've proposed.
    You carry on and do what ultimately, you planned to do all along.

    DairyLamaKundo
  • genkakugenkaku Northampton, Mass. U.S.A. Veteran
    edited August 2016

    Periodically, I get extended emails from a fellow who lived through the same sangha upsets I did nearly forty years ago. The writer is still outraged, still picking the scab, still wishing the world were "fair," still 'hoping to protect the Dharma,' still demanding "justice," still seeking to round up people who will acknowledge and support his ardor....

    I no longer open those emails. They are too self-serving for me.

    DairyLamalobstersilver
  • ESZ123ESZ123 Explorer
    edited August 2016

    @federica It seems you're saying I should agree to disagree with my Sangha and let it go. Is that broadly accurate?

  • personperson Don't believe everything you think the void Veteran

    Here's a Buddhist take on the role your suffering plays in this whole mess.

    DairyLamalobsterWalkersilver
  • ESZ123ESZ123 Explorer

    @genkaku said:
    Periodically, I get extended emails from a fellow who lived through the same sangha upsets I did nearly forty years ago. The writer is still outraged, still picking the scab, still wishing the world were "fair," still 'hoping to protect the Dharma,' still demanding "justice," still seeking to round up people who will acknowledge and support his ardor....

    I no longer open those emails. They are too self-serving for me.

    There's no point responding if you feel he can't benefit, right?

    Shoshin
  • 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

    @ESZ123 said:
    @federica It seems you're saying I should agree to disagree with my Sangha and let it go. Is that broadly accurate?

    I don't know how many times I have had to say it. Refer to my first post in response to your very first opener. And the one after that. And the one after that...

    YES! It's not only 'broadly' accurate, it's totally, completely, entirely accurate!

    It's not a question of 'agreeing to disagree'. It's a question of knowing that no matter how good, honourable, righteous and confirmed our intentions are, sometimes, the better part of valour, and anything else you'd care to label it - is to put it down, accept it, wave it goodbye, preserve our well-being, and Let. It. GO.

    DairyLama
  • 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
    edited August 2016

    @ESZ123 said:

    @genkaku said:
    Periodically, I get extended emails from a fellow who lived through the same sangha upsets I did nearly forty years ago. The writer is still outraged, still picking the scab, still wishing the world were "fair," still 'hoping to protect the Dharma,' still demanding "justice," still seeking to round up people who will acknowledge and support his ardor....

    I no longer open those emails. They are too self-serving for me.

    There's no point responding if you feel he can't benefit, right?

    Oh he would definitely benefit. He would just have to use his ears in proportion to his mouth, and engage.

  • 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
    edited August 2016

    Just as a curiosity, @ESZ123: What other Buddhist forum(s) have you posted in that has/have given you any completely different advice to that which you have gained here...?

  • ESZ123ESZ123 Explorer

    @federica I suggest you apply what you're proposing that I do with respect to this issue to how you engage this discussion. You say you're frustrated by reading this discussion and yet, keep posting to it. The better part of valour is to preserve our wellbeing, as you say.

    It may be more useful to allow those who have offered advice here, which I have stated is very useful, to continue to engage this discussion without your repeating your advice and strong opinion. It is well noted, thank you. It seems that we must agree to disagree that my samaya with my Guru is valid, profound and my own responsibility. I see no benefit in your insulting him, if only because it does not endear me to your words.

    You may see that some here continue to suggest a different course of action than you encourage me to follow. A few (@Cinorjer, @Dakini for example) have asked to be updated on my progress, in one case a year from now. Please allow this to play out peacefully.

    None can predict whether continued benefit will come from my raising these concerns. I think few would disagree that the removal of a Director who has earned the reputation of being psychoemotionally deaf and who recognised some responsibility in the threat to my life is a benefit to the Sangha. Likewise the removal of a Kitchen Manager who lied about her serving non potable water to hundreds of people, with the Director's acquiescence.

    If you have anything else to add, I suggest you employ a more precise tool than your sledghammer.

  • SwaroopSwaroop India Veteran

    People born during the 60s or before would know what a "scratched record" is.

    ESZ123
  • 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
    edited August 2016

    I think the reason they asked you for an update is because they realise good advice is falling on deaf ears. > Cinorger's final comment:

    @Cinorjer said: I was looking at his original post where he said this happened in 2014, he even fled the country after that, and in 2015 the police closed the case. I really think by continuing to treat this as something he needs to continue a crusade on, we're doing him no good. The police already closed the case. Unless he has new evidence, what can he do, and how many years do you advise him to agonize over this? There comes a time when the best advice, let go.

    Dakini's final comment.

    @Dakini said: Well, OP, it seems that the discussion has helped you to some extent, so the rest is up to you. It also seems that you've received some excellent procedural advice--priceless, really.

    If there are any further developments, consider dropping by from time to time, to let us know. Take care.

    I asked you whether you had received conflicting advice from any other Buddhist forum, and I see you've evaded the question.
    I have in fact seen another forum you posted on. The word "Tumbleweed" springs to mind.

    So with that, I think it best to leave you to your own devices.

    Best of luck.
    as ever,
    Sincerely, 'Sledgehammer.'

    silverKundopossibilities
  • SwaroopSwaroop India Veteran

    @federica please put the guy out of his misery. Close the thread down.

    possibilities
  • 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

    Oh, don't worry @Swaroop, it will probably just come to its own end in due course. I don't think any more can be added by anyone, to what has already been said.

  • ESZ123ESZ123 Explorer

    @federica Re: @Cinorjer , The police have not "closed" the case and there is new evidence of a coverup of crime, as I have said here a few times. Re: @Dakini , it seems to me that when she says that "the discussion has helped you to some extent... If there are any further developments, consider dropping by from time to time, to let us know. Take care", she sees me appreciating some of the advice here, rather than "seeing good advice falling on deaf ears".

    I will gladly offer further comment as it seems relevant.

    silverShoshin
  • silversilver In the beginning there was nothing, and then it exploded. USA, Left coast. Veteran

    @ESZ123 said:

    @genkaku said:
    Periodically, I get extended emails from a fellow who lived through the same sangha upsets I did nearly forty years ago. The writer is still outraged, still picking the scab, still wishing the world were "fair," still 'hoping to protect the Dharma,' still demanding "justice," still seeking to round up people who will acknowledge and support his ardor....

    I no longer open those emails. They are too self-serving for me.

    There's no point responding if you feel he can't benefit, right?

    This is most definitely coming under the flogging a dead horse umbrella. If you've done what you can, it's okay to just move on. How much more clear-eyed and clear-conscience do you think you could become...is even rationally possible? Your 'purpose' has moved on past pretty much any practicality for all involved.

    Cinorjer
  • Steve_BSteve_B Far southwest corner of Indiana, USA Veteran

    @ESZ123 said:

    None can predict whether continued benefit will come from my raising these concerns.

    I can.
    I predict that no continued benefit will come from you raising these concerns. I would even question the validity of "continued" in this context.

    Hopefully I am not among the people who you are imagining to have given you advice contrary to "drop it, in your own best interest."

    CinorjerlobsterKundo
  • 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
    edited August 2016

    @ESZ123 said:
    @federica Re: @Cinorjer , The police have not "closed" the case and there is new evidence of a coverup of crime, as I have said here a few times. Re: @Dakini , it seems to me that when she says that "the discussion has helped you to some extent... If there are any further developments, consider dropping by from time to time, to let us know. Take care", she sees me appreciating some of the advice here, rather than "seeing good advice falling on deaf ears".

    I will gladly offer further comment as it seems relevant.

    Again, by omitting a chunk of Dakini's post, you choose to be selective in your perception of what has been said to you. Furthermore, @Dakini earlier in the thread advised you to get counselling first, before considering pushing ahead with further involvement with this situation. She suggested seeking an EMDR specialist, in order to assist you in processing what you have already gone through. You didn't quote that, I see....

    You flit over and totally ignore the advice given to you suggesting you abandon the course of action you seem to wish to pursue, and focus instead on grasping the straws that feed your compunction to carry this further.
    I cannot for the life of me work out what the heck is driving you to do what the majority of us are telling you is both unskilful and - yes. Idiotic.

    Maybe it is we, persisting in attempting to save you from your own foolishness, who are being idiotic in our assistance.

    Well, at least, unlike elsewhere, we are responding to you.

  • ESZ123ESZ123 Explorer
    edited August 2016

    @federica said:
    I cannot for the life of me work out what the heck is driving you

    Thinking is a killer.

    Shoshin
  • lobsterlobster Veteran
    edited August 2016

    ^^. Good joke from @Shoshin. Let's all bang our heads against a brick wall with the trolls, hopeless cases, thoughtless killers, determined hell dwellers, dippy hippies, crass crustaceans etc.

    It will be such a relief when we stop. O.o

    ESZ123
  • DakiniDakini Veteran
    edited August 2016

    @ESZ123 said:
    Oh wait... HH the Dalai Lama should be added to that list.

    Haha--to the list of people telling you what you didn't want to hear? OP, can you go back to that former police chief and consult with him some more? Share your misgivings (again, if you already have), ask questions, share doubts, etc.? Did I understand correctly that this person is retired now? That means they would have some time on their hands to advise you, so it wouldn't be an imposition. You have this excellent resource available to you; you might as well use it.

    Speaking of "lists", the Right Speech "list" of questions also includes is it true. Don't forget that one.

  • DakiniDakini Veteran
    edited August 2016

    Here is is an excerpt from the Buddha's sutra on Right Speech, or from one of his teachings on that topic, anyway. The comments are from an article I wrote on this subject a few years back. Your reference to the questions, "Is it helpful, is it kind", etc. brought this up, because I don't think the guidelines include "is it kind", exactly. The guidelines are: Is it factual, true, beneficial, endearing to others, and properly timed. However, the Buddha is clear that there are times when one must speak out even though the message won't be "pleasing/endearing" to others.

    "Potaliya, four kinds of people exist and can be found in the world. What kinds?

    1) Some blame those who should be blamed, according to the truth, at the proper time, but do not praise those who should be praised, according to the truth, at the proper time.

    2) Some praise those who should be praised, according to the truth, at the proper time, but do not blame those who should be blamed, according to the truth, at the proper time.

    3) Some do not blame those who should be blamed, according to the truth, at the proper time, and do not praise those who should be praised, according to the truth, at the proper time.

    4) Some blame those who should be blamed, according to the truth, at the proper time, and praise those who should be praised, according to the truth, at the proper time.

    Potaliya, of all those four kinds of people, whichever blames those who should be blamed, according to the truth, at the proper time, and praises those who should be praised, according to the truth, at the proper time, this kind of person is the most beautiful and refined of these four kinds of people."

    Here we see that the Buddha, contrary to what some would have us believe, does not advocate pleasing, truthful speech at the expense of unpleasant speech. Indeed, he exhorts us to criticize when criticism is due, if it is truthful and spoken at the proper time, according to the relevant circumstances. One can further understand his words to mean that silence in the face of danger or wrong-doing, would be wrong speech. He makes it clear that not blaming when blame is due is not an acceptable course of action. Elsewhere in his teachings, he instructs: "In the case of words that the Tathagata knows to be factual, true, beneficial, but unendearing and disagreeable to others, he has a sense of the proper time for saying them". Do not avoid speaking disagreeable but truthful and beneficial words, he instructs us, but be judicious in choosing the appropriate time to say them.

    Compassion also serves as a guide in difficult situations. If there is the potential for harm in the sangha, does compassion not compel us to warn others of the danger? If we knowingly allow wrong-doing to continue, then we become complicit in violating the sanctity and the very purpose of the sangha, which is to provide a safe community of virtuous friends to support each other in their path to Enlightenment.

    ESZ123
  • @ESZ123 I'm curious, what are you looking for here? Since we are not lawyers we can't give you legal advice. Since we only have a general idea about what's going on without important details such as their side of the story, we don't even know how accurate it is. It would be wrong for any of us to do more than advise you to go to the police and let them handle it, if you feel its your obligation. At this point all you're doing is inviting people to tell you the Buddhist response is to get on with your life just so you can argue with them. I wish you well, but I feel you are misusing the sympathetic people here. So I've given my best advice. Do something, and then get on with your life. What you do is up to you. But talking about it here is not doing something.

    lobsterKundoperson
  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran
    edited August 2016

    @ESZ123 you will have to excuse my friend...and if you haven't already gathered, shhh he thinks he's a @lobster ....

  • DakiniDakini Veteran
    edited August 2016

    With all that said, though, you're the one in the situation, you're the only one who can decide what's best or right. For this reason, I suggested earlier to consult with the former police chief, and really hash out your quandary and your feelings about it. We have no way of knowing whether there's any point in pursuing it at this point, after the police already dropped it once. But if the local police did a poor job, or additional info/proof or whatever, is now available, it could make sense to bring it to the attention of a higher authority. It's not unusual for cases to be bumbled on the first go.

    But whatever course of action or inaction you choose, your conscience will need to be ok with the decision. That seems to be what you're struggling with.

    edit: after catching up with all the posts, I'll add that it does seem that there's been some positive resolution to the problem--some individuals have been removed from the sangha. If you're satisfied with that, OP, then you could call it a wrap. That's a significant achievement.

    RE: what @Dakini said ;)
    Yes, I do think some effective trauma therapy could to wonders for the OP, no matter what he decides. It would help close this difficult chapter in his life, and let him move on, feeling at peace. (Thank you, Federica.) It may also sound like I'm urging the OP to act, but he asked for Buddhist guidance at the outset, so this is what I've provided. I also recognize it's a very tough decision with possible unpleasant repercussions, so I don't feel it's my, or anyone's place, to try to push the OP in one direction or the other.

    For that matter, OP, you'd be surprised what a massage can do. It can remove all stress so that suddenly, the world looks very different, and you feel like you can cope again. It leaves you feeling stronger and removes the overwhelmed feeling. I wonder if you could try that, as a mini-treatment for the emotional turmoil you're feeling, and see if it helps you make a decision.

    CinorjerESZ123person
  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Moderator

    It's kind of amusing to come back twice a day and see this thread accumulate 20 more posts all saying the same things, :lol:

    Sometimes when I don't know what to do about a big decision, I read this (link to follow) sutra. It just helps me arrive at a place of love and peace in my heart so that my decision can be more confidently made in light of my practice. The law does not care about our practice or beliefs, as Fed said. I wouldn't expect it to, nor would I expect an outcome based on my beliefs. But that doesn't mean I can't use my beliefs as an anchor to help me arrive at the best decision I can make.

    I think sometimes we think too hard about decisions rather than feel our way through them. I'm not talking about using our volatile, unreliable feelings but that far deeper part of our nature that our practice touches that allows us to operate from our heart. Sometimes when we can do so, we find the logical monkey mind process was taking us down the wrong road, for the wrong reasons (generally to satisfy ego).

    http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/kn/snp/snp.1.08.piya.html

    DakiniESZ123Kundoperson
  • ESZ123ESZ123 Explorer

    It comes down to speaking in a good way, my gut sense that wrongdoing is being obscured by slandering the victim at the expense of the integrity of the Sangha and the Teachings for the sake of protecting ego. The integrity of my Sangha is real, can benefit many thousands of others as it has already and I have vowed to protect it. To those who now come at me with sledghammers as if this is some kind of sandbox scuffle, find your ground. Drop the struggle. Go elsewhere or to another corner of the Internet if you dislike what you read here.

    If you stay, try to maintain curiosity with patience. Apply the six paramitas. Maintain, or find your essential compassion for the suffering of myself and others which I am laying out here, somewhat vulnerably. Show some respect if you expect a response. Life is short and precious. Don't waste it on smartass insults and quick fix naievete. Never could spell that word.

    @Dakini - your quotes and commentary on right speech are very insightful in this regard. Thank you.

    Likewise your kind comments on counselling, which I have received and continue to receive, by the way. As you surmise I came here for buddhist aligned guidance which my good friend the Judge, I feel (with respect) lacks. The Police Chief is no longer available to me, being now too far away. However I laid it out to him quite openly and he took it all in his stride, as if he was quite familiar with my general sense of bewilderment.

    As for the two employees who were unfortunately obliged to end their employment, they both remain well known Sangha members of decades, with strong ties in the community, their relationships therein by now steeped in nepotism and delusion. Such is the allure of nirvana. I learned much from them, both personally and within our many interactions. It was a rich experience for which I am grateful, free of regret. I continue to apply what I learned in that Centre every single day.

    Certainly I am hesitant to bring this matter to the Attorney General as advised. A full blown investigation could bring me back to that community and oblige many to face the demons which have been at play for years. Our Sangha is well aware of the demons in this particular Centre and they have disemboweled many. The smarter ones will not make an enemy of me if this plays out in this way. If some people do so, I can prepare for the challenge as any good warrior does - with a bow, meditation, contemplation and fearlessness.

    That said, there are many of my Sangha members who would support such an enquiry and a very few who have already bravely come out and said they support me because it is necessary. At the end of the day (or perhaps the beginning!) if I do it with anger, a sense of retribution or wanting to gain or regain a reputation it will be dharmically disastrous.

    To clarify my foundation here, underlying all of this is my vajrayana samaya to my Guru, which I share with my wife and many friends. It is a concept which I respect that many deride and yet which I personally approach very seriously. If you think I'm nuts, leave. This idea that one can just "choose another marble from the box" when some of the Guru's students act out is child's play - pure, unadulterated spiritual materialism. Perhaps the most approchable equivalent is leaving a marriage after a few arguments.

    All the texts warn that the vajrayana path is dangerous and should not be embarked upon lightly. It is an opportunity to experience the "full catastrophe" of samsara simultaneous with the basic enlightened nature of existence. Samsara has been described as an emergency ward wherein we all have the capacity to be the bhodisattva doctors performing surgery on its countless patients, bruised and battered from lifetimes of delusion.

    person
  • 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

    Ok, well it seems that this is turning into a problematic discussion, with members now seemingly at odds with one another on the best way to advise you, and how to proceed.

    I will merely say this:
    1 - There are comments you make in your post, above, which seem to indicate some doors previously open to you, are now closed, or at least, not now passable, which would indicate that negotiating further action is more problematic now, than you seemed to indicate before.

    2- You have your Buddhist tenets at odds with Legal procedure. That is to say, you hold deeply-ingrained views, accumulated through years of study, dedication and application, which challenge you to your very limits, and urge you come what may, to hold them to ultimate value and integrity; However, as I have mentioned (and others have confirmed) no matter how strongly you hold your Practice of Vajrayana - and I commend you for doing so - The Practice itself will hold little or no sway in legal procedure and in the pursuit of practical justice.
    There is, according to National Law, when it comes to Fraud and attempted murder, no contest. So by all means Hold your Practice as special and significant. I have never said otherwise.
    But it's important that you understand that at one point, you may, if these proceedings DO continue, find it essential to consider these two factors entirely separately. In matters of Law, while you may feel torn, Law has no such conflict to consider. It has but one objective, and that is the implementation of Law. Irrespective of Religion.
    It's not that your good friend the Judge LACKS Buddhist-aligned guidance. It's that he cannot, in light of legal matters, consider it. He approaches the matter the only way he can: purely and simply via Legal statute. As he should.

    3 - and final, I found, heavily to my cost, that while support and loyalty from others potentially embroiled in the same situation, are certainly valuable and encouraging, sadly, in every single case once the shit hit the fan, when it came to asking those people for practical support in the way of legal solidarity, sworn witness statements and cooperation in the face of investigation - not one single other person involved was willing to go that far. Morally, they were all totally behind me. However, when the moment came for them to metaphorically put their money where their mouths were, they all, without exception, back-pedalled and refused to commit.
    And this is not rare. Far from it.
    Courts are very well accustomed to seeing those in a defensive position (unfair dismissal, Discrimination in the workplace), standing alone and unaided. The term 'Hostile Witness' is a well-known one....
    Do not under any circumstances, count on the solid support of Sangha members who also suffered during those times. I can almost 100% guarantee you that when push comes to shove, they will be extremely reluctant to back you up.
    as someone once said, "The trouble with those who say they're right behind you, is that they're usually the ones holding a knife and stabbing you in the back."

    So with your expansion of matters as they currently now stand, and your explanation of which avenues remain open, I really am not sure how much more anyone can help you.

    You actually have a two-pronged dilemma, you see: What to do with regard to perpetuating or repairing your Spiritual connection with your Guru and his instruction, and what to do with regard to the pursuit of this situation, within the parameters of the Law?
    That is where your conflict lies....

    With your clarification of the situation, as you've enlarged upon it, above, what is there left for you to decide?

    Kundoperson
  • KundoKundo Sydney, Australia Veteran
    edited August 2016

    @ESZ123 said:
    It comes down to speaking in a good way, my gut sense that wrongdoing is being obscured by slandering the victim at the expense of the integrity of the Sangha and the Teachings for the sake of protecting ego. The integrity of my Sangha is real, can benefit many thousands of others as it has already and I have vowed to protect it. To those who now come at me with sledghammers as if this is some kind of sandbox scuffle, find your ground. Drop the struggle. Go elsewhere or to another corner of the Internet if you dislike what you read here.

    With the greatest of civility I can muster - what the hell did I just read?

    You come into this Sangha (albeit an online one) and proceed to tell those of us who don't agree with you to taking a flying leap?

    I don't think so buddy, if you don't like our answers the solution is simple - don't log on here.

    Judging by your air of arrogance and holier than thou attitude about your Guru, I can see that you are likely the problem with this ongoing saga. You are a narcissistic, professional victim who is doing the online equivalent of stomping your feet on the ground like my daughter did as a stroppy two year old who didn't get her way.

    You live in the real world mate. Things are not always going to go your way. You either enjoy the drama in your life, or you need to harden the f$$k up.

    Don't come in here lecturing us because we won't feed you the crap you want to hear. There are plenty of other forums that love a good drama - go to one of them. :-1:

    lobsterSteve_B
  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Moderator
    edited August 2016

    My teacher is also Vajrayana but he would never encourage students to stay with him or any other Guru in an abusive situation. If your teacher knows what has gone on and chooses to do and say nothing, that, to me, is akin to abuse. Not petty argument. Marriages can and should end when abuse or emotional/mental/spiritual hijacking is happening. So should the Guru/Student relationship. There will be ups and down, and great challenges. And even tests of sorts. But that is not the same as sticking by someone who allows abuse of you or others to continue when he knows it is happening. I am not a fan of blind faith, but sometimes a little bit of it seems necessary in some situations. But blinding yourself or having a Guru who pretends to be blind isn't the same.

    The Vajrayana Guru/Student relationship is one built and based on immense trust and devotion. But it should not be blind. And when someone allows abuse to continue, that is a huge breach of trust to me. Why would you wish to continue with someone who behaved that way, with that level of devotion and no questions asked as to being the leader and spiritual director of the Sangha?

    KundoTara1978
  • 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

    Thanks @karasti. I refrained from further comment because actually, I know very little about such a connection to a Guru, through Vajrayana/Mahayana practice. But I'm glad my suspicions/reservations were apparently well-grounded.

    And not in so many words, @ESZ123 , I echo @dhammachick's sentiments.
    You forget that it is YOU who is a 'guest' here. This forum existed before your issues arose; as such, to continue posting and commenting is a privilege afforded by us, to you; not the other way round.
    You don't get to tell US to go elsewhere.
    The arrogance of such a demand is maybe further insight into what keeps this issue burning in your heart and mind.

    Steve_B
  • lobsterlobster Veteran
    edited August 2016

    Burn the heretic! Hiel Lama! Tantra uber alles! :3

    Here to help. o:)

    KundopersonWalkerSteve_B
  • Tara1978Tara1978 UK Veteran

    I beginning to think this thread is just a troll here to incite reactions, oh dear. I've always found the advice here very helpful. This guy just seems angry and indecisive (if real).

    The guru/student relationship in vajrayana practice is in someways like a marriage, a vow of absolute trust meant to last a lifetime (or more ;) ), but there are people out there who will abuse that position, in which case the only option is to break off all connections, one can still remain faithful and true to the buddhist path.

    Kundo
  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Moderator

    I think in some cultures, it has been accepted that there will be some abuse in the Guru-Student relationship, unfortunately. People do truly give themselves over to their Guru entirely, as @Tara1978 said in a sort of marriage because the commitment to each other is that strong. But as we have seen with other teachers, there is potential for abuse with that kind of relationship and the respect and trust has to be there from both ends. Just because it might be seen as ok for a student to accept abuse from a Guru because they pledged their devotion, I don't think it's ok. When Buddhism's basis is one of love, kindness and compassion, I expect my teacher to excel at those qualities. Not the opposite of them. That doesn't mean he is perfect, and sometimes tough love is required just like it is when a parent is trying to teach a child. But it is still based on love and respect. Not based on abuse, lack of trust, disrespect, rudeness, lies or refusal to see problems and accept responsibility for those problems as the head of the Sangha. Turning a blind eye to abuse is not ok. And it most definitely is not ok from one meant to lead a group of Buddha's followers on a path of compassion.

    Walker
  • ESZ123ESZ123 Explorer

    @karasti Good points, naturally. However in my view, my Guru has shown no such 'blind eye' to date.

  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran
    edited August 2016

    I recall reading that Vajrayana guru's and practitioners should be held to a very high ethical standard, more so than other monks, because they practise techniques on the tantric path. What the OP has said so far about his guru does not really gel with that or inspire confidence in his ability to lead, even were he a normal monk.

    It also baffles me that the OP is still hanging around - the thread provided a mix of advice, enough to proceed with in several directions, and what followed has been largely negative. Seems like taking on board more of other people's wisdom would not generate a better result, so why not resolve on a course of action and go do it?

    Kundo
  • A leader should be aware of problems that are occurring in the Sangha, and deal with them. That's part of their job.

    And by the sounds of it, there were major problems in your group. Problems that were not addressed. Sorry to be blunt, but I wouldn't be bothered at all by any so-called connection you feel to your guru. He sounds like he really doesn't have a clue.

    I think you really need to ask yourself why you have any loyalty to this guy. All the stuff that happened to you was under his watch.

    KeromeTara1978
  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Moderator

    If he allows people to remain within the Sangha who have been dividing the Sangha and perpetrating abuse from the Director on down, then that is turning a blind eye. I would find it hard to believe that with your telling him what was happening and all the things going on that you have mentioned in this thread, that he truly doesn't know and is innocent in his ignorance of the goings on. You told him what happened, he told you go take it to a conflict resolutions board which breached your confidentiality and trust. His refusal to allow direct contact with him and have the option ONLY to go through a secretary whose behavior is questionable is another concern. While my teacher has his senior students help the rest of us out with requests, he is always accessible to us directly whenever we need. I cannot fathom having built a relationship with a Guru only to have no direct access to him but to have that relationship filtered by other people. That is not how it works. The student-Guru connection is a DIRECT connect line, all the time.

    If he is completely ignorant of the ways the people that run his Sangha are behaving and treating his students, that is another problem. But based on what you have said, and what you told us that you said to him at least in the time you were able to access his guidance, that is not the case. The job of someone at the head of anything is to delegate tasks out to reserve their time for the things no one else can do. But it is also their job to always know what the people they trust to delegate to, are properly doing their jobs. Because you went to him at least at one point, he is aware. His allowing the same people to remain in their jobs years later suggests to me that he is refusing to see the problem and prefer it disappear, and when you left, that is exactly what happened.

    If he has so many students under him that he cannot manage them and care for him, then something is wrong because that is NOT how the student-Guru relationship works.

    WalkerlobsterTara1978
  • 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

    Hopefully now, @ESZ123 you will maybe realise that it is not I who has a distorted sense of your Guru's worth, but from what you say, and from what others have brought forward, it might just be you. I thought perhaps, initially that your objection might have been reasonable; but further in, it seems misguided, instead.
    Further just cause for abandonment of this specific direction...?

    DairyLamaWalkerKundo
  • genkakugenkaku Northampton, Mass. U.S.A. Veteran

    With the greatest of civility I can muster - what the hell did I just read?...etc.

    @Dakini -- Please receive a lingering grateful smooch from this part of the world.

    Dakini
  • 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

    @genkaku said:

    With the greatest of civility I can muster - what the hell did I just read?...etc.

    @Dakini -- Please receive a lingering grateful smooch from this part of the world.

    (@Dakini didn't post that: @dhammachick did, you inattentive, flirtatious Monk-ey, you! )

    Kundo
  • DakiniDakini Veteran
    edited August 2016

    @genkaku said:

    With the greatest of civility I can muster - what the hell did I just read?...etc.

    @Dakini -- Please receive a lingering grateful smooch from this part of the world.

    It wasn't me, but I'll take it, anyway. :heart:

    Let's not forget that the whole guru-samaya issue also involves the OP's wife. That makes it more difficult. In fact, I wonder what the wife thinks of all this. It seems to me that dealing effectively with the situation, whether the OP decides to pursue legal action or to walk away, will require extricating himself, together with his wife, emotionally/psychologically from the entire scene, including the guru relationship. A deprogramming, if we're honest. That seems to be one of the main sticking points, here.

    ShoshinpersonKundokarasti
  • 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

    On the other hand, seeing as there seems to be a problematic flaw with the Guru's attitude to his responsibilities and involvement - would I want my wife's continued exposure to the guy?

    Walker
  • ShoshinShoshin No one in particular Nowhere Special Veteran
    edited August 2016

    Tolerance of crime in the Sangha: idiot compassion?

    I like the title of the thread btw :)

    "Well all I have left to say is that karma will have its way
    ending with joy or feeling glum, it will bite one in the bum !"

    After all this is Buddhism we're talking about..... :)
    ~Twin Verses~
    Metta

This discussion has been closed.