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The film is presented by Zenji Acharya, who hails from the oldest Buddhist lineage of  India  and donations will benefit the world’s first  Museum  of  Buddhism  and Yoga. The Buddhist Assemblage will include the earliest original Indian depictions of all Buddhas, Bodhisattvas and Devas from the Gandhara, Gupta and Pala empires of  India  that inspired the majority of art all across  Asia  over many millennia. In addition, the Museum will feature some of the rarest Hindu deities that feature prominently in Buddhist texts and architecture as Guardians of the Buddha and that reflect the artistry of majestic Hindu empires from Pallava and Chola to Hoysala and Vijayanagara. This monumental project is the brainchild of Zen Acharya (Sanskrit: Dhyanacharya) – the only Western acharya to share lineage with Indian Buddhist gurus such as Sariputra, Maudgalyayana, Bodhi Dharma, Nagarjuna, Asvaghosha, Buddhaghosha, Nagasena, Kumarajiva, Padmasambhava, Atisa and the like. At Bodh Gaya where Lord Buddha gained His enlightenment, Zen made a vow to his ancestors to honor their traditions and preserve the teachings of the Tathagatha. Akin to a Buddhist version of Joel Osteen, Zen is giving a whole new face and voice to Dharma. Our online magazine was established with the vision of delivering accurate coverage of all subjects of interest to Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs, Jains and the wider Dharmic community. Tibet Telegraph: What Lies Beneath the Robes: Are Buddhist Monasteries Suitable Places for Children?
This month is the sacred month of Saga Dawa, when millions of Buddhists celebrate the Buddha’s birth, enlightenment and parinirvana (passing away) over 2500 years ago. On the one hand,this is a shocking story about the moral degeneration of the Buddhist community, with supposedly celibate Buddhist monks engaging in sexual activity. The point of taking monastic celibacy vows is to show one’s commitment and intention to renounce attachment to sexual desire that, from the Buddhist viewpoint, causes many different types of physical and mental suffering.
Over the last few years, I have heard several stories of monastic sexual misconduct and abuse in Tibetan monasteries in exile. Kalu says that when he was in his early teens, he was sexually abused by a gang of older monks who would visit his room each week. Putting aside the issue of sexual misconduct and abuse, much has also been said and written about on the everyday specter of violence as corporal punishment within Tibetan monasteries.
One Tibetan man I know very well (who was a monk for 15 years from the age of 12) told me that physical beating of young monks was the norm in his monastery.
In Tibet, monks were almost always recruited as very young children through the agency of their parents or guardians. Furthermore, according to Goldstein and other personal anecdotes, child monks who ran away from the monastery were generally not offered sympathy or support and typically scolded by their parents and family; with the child sent immediately back to the monastery. Born in 1929 in a Tibetan village, Tsering developed a strong dislike of his country’s theocratic ruling elite. Even in exile, many Tibetans enter monasteries as children below the age of 16, often as orphans or at a long distance from their parents’ home.
Furthermore, whereas previously monastics lived in isolated places providing little contact with lay people, women or worldly activities, nowadays, the close proximity of monasteries to large towns and cities and the proliferation and easy access of internet porn and so on has no doubt increased and fed the monks’ sexual desire and frustration.
Who can these children turn to if there is a culture of abuse, shame, silence and denial in their community? Understandably, the Tibetan community in exile does not always respond well to criticism or suggestions for improvement, particularly when coming from non-Tibetans. It is time for the Tibetan community to stop defending those who abuse and exploit their position of trust. If children are being left vulnerable in Tibetan monasteries, why don’t the Tibetan exile leader Lobsang Sangay and the Tibetan monastic authorities follow the Bhutanese example and call for an official report into the safety of child monastics in exile? When are we going to get a public response from the monastic authorities on these alleged cases of physical or sexual abuse, particularly that of Kalu Rinpoche? These testimonies could then be compiled into an official document and delivered to the CTA and monastic authorities to respond to.
On a positive note, Kalu Rinpoche is not just taking on the voice of a victim but also that of a pioneer, creating a school for children whose families are in financial difficulty and barring them from becoming monks until the age of 19. Adele Wilde-Blavatsky has an MA in Philosophy and previously worked as a Philosophy lecturer.

By Claude Arpi Claude Arpi For most Indians, November 14 means the birthday of Jawaharlal Nehru. In addition, the PEW Forum has found that a 65% majority of Americans subscribe to Dharmic practices like yoga, meditation, karma and the number continues to grow in record numbers.
Filmed all over the world in  India ,  Japan , France ,  UK ,  USA ,  Switzerland , Hong Kong and  Hungary , the epic features more teachings of Lord Buddha as well as the Bhagavad Gita and Upanishads than any other film with real-life testimonials of how Westerners are increasingly using Dharmic traditions to overcome serious life challenges from cancer to strokes. Featuring an unrivalled collection of Buddhist and Hindu artifacts, antiquities, manuscripts and murtis, the Museum will unite all traditions of Buddhism – Mahayana, Vajrayana and Theravada as well as build a bridge between Buddhists, Hindus, yoga practitioners and spiritualists worldwide.
Be it Lord Buddha’s own Footprint Buddhapada and His earliest aniconic representations of the Triratna and Dharmachakra – all over 2000 years old, a 4th century Gupta masterwork that reflects the glory of Nalanda; a large antique sculpture of the emaciated Siddhartha or the last full-size prayer bust of Amitabha in the trademark Black stone of the 8th century Pala Empire, the Museum will feature rare artworks unmatched by any other collection.
There will also be the oldest palm-leaf manuscripts of Tipitakas, Bhagavad Gita, Ramayana and Puranas and collectibles of Mahatma Gandhi, Swami Vivekananda, Rabindranath Tagore and Shankaracharya – all of whom venerated Lord Buddha in superlative terms.
The ‘last of the Jedi Knights’ so to speak, Zenji’ hails from a direct line of Buddhist Brahmin sages that built dozens of temples near the Buddha’s home in Magadha over a millennia ago and were appointed by the Palas of Bengal – the last Buddhist empire of India – to preserve Buddhist practices. For this reason, he conducted years of research into the forgotten Buddhist practices of India and early Buddhist traditions of Asia and discovered that a great deal of what passes off for Buddhism in the West is not in line with what his ancestors had intended. The Chakra is not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, suitability, or validity of any information on this article.
On the other hand, it is a positive sign of a conservative, Buddhist society opening up and acknowledging there is a serious problem of sexual misconduct in their monastic institutions.
At times it is difficult to distinguish what is second-hand gossip and what is based on facts or direct personal experience. Rinpoche’s allegations caused shockwaves within the Tibetan Buddhist community (particularly his western students). Stories of excessive corporal punishment and violence in Tibetan Buddhist monasteries are commonplace.
He related a story to me of how as a young adolescent he was held down on a bed by four adult monks and beaten with a heavy stick for the minor infraction of being late to morning puja. Instead of handing him over to the police on an attempted murder charge, the monk was kicked out of the monastery and no more was said about it.
It was considered important to recruit monks before they had experienced sexual relations with girls, so monks were brought to the monastery as young boys, usually between the ages of 6-12. He was taken from his family near Drepung at 13 and forced into the Dalai Lama’s personal dance troupe. Many children do not see their parents or family members for years; their sole place of refuge and care being the monastery. What is more worrying is the presence of children in the care of these all-male institutions. Exposure of these cases and others that are widely known within our communities must be brought out of the closets.
At the least, in line with their publicly-stated desire to modernize, they could establish adequate sex education and internationally-recognized child protection measures in the monasteries and schools. If even Rinpoche’s allegations are not publicly investigated then what hope is there for a young, unknown orphan child undergoing a similar experience?
Whatever anyone might think about this issue, first and foremost (following Kalu Rinpoche’s example) we all need to think about what is in the best interests of the children.
It will also contain the earliest Indian depictions of Avalokiteshwara, Maitreya and Vajrapani and an unprecedented gallery dedicated to history’s second most influential monk Bodhidharma – the founder of Zen Buddhism who himself resurrected to Amitabha’s Pure Land.
Each item will be used to teach Dharma and visitors will be allowed to interact with these relics through prayer, meditation and chanting – a feature no other world-class museum allows. In fact, the temples continued to honor the traditions of Shakyamuni, Amitabha, Lokeshwara, Vajrapani and Maitreya long after Buddhism disappeared from India and they carry the oldest figures of Dharmapala Nio that are seen today across Japan as Kongo Rikishi temple Guardians. He also realized that the only way Buddhism will thrive is if it can generate excitement and enthusiasm among the youth who often do not relate to monks in general. I have just begun a blog on Thangkas and Mandalas, it contains explainations and descriptions of numerous Buddhist philosophies.

Yet, one might also question if this was really what the Buddha intended when he spoke about the path of celibacy?
I can also personally verify that there was a violent incident at a respected Kagyu monastery in Nepal a few years ago, where a young monk used a meat cleaver to attack another young monk about the head and body, almost killing him in the process. On the other hand, it was not considered important what these boys themselves felt about a lifetime commitment to celibate monasticism and they were basically made monks without regard to their personality, temperament or inclination.
They are then expected to keep the celibacy vow through puberty and adulthood—not an easy task for an adult, let alone an adolescent.
For an adult, one of the best places to study and practice Buddhism is within a Tibetan Buddhist monastic setting.
As a community, we have NO obligation to defend these people nor anything to be ashamed of.
What about kick-starting a public initiative that provides both monks and ex-monks a confidential, safe platform to register and report their personal tales of abuse and neglect in the monasteries? At the very least, setting aside legitimate concerns about violence and sexual abuse, doesn’t it make more sense for a person to take the decision to become celibate after puberty, when they are better able to make an informed, adult decision about it? Richard Shusterman and is currently working on her first collection of poetry and essays for publication. In addition, the collection features the world’s oldest and longest thangka in 24K gold showing the Indo-Tibetan influence; ancient scrolls of China’s most famous Buddhist emperors, original art by Japan’s all-time greatest Buddhist monks including Nichiren, Hakuin Ekaku, Obaku Kosen, Ikkyu Sojun, Otagaki Rengetsu, Takuan Soho and Samurai legend Miyamoto Musashi and masterworks by the greatest Buddhist painters in history such as Seeshu Toyo, Katsushika Hokusai and Ando Hiroshige who all inspired Europe’s Monet, Renoir, Van Gogh and Obrist among others. The Museum will also produce films, art exhibitions, magazines and speaking events to promote Dharmic philosophy to all demographics with a special emphasis on the youth and the young at heart. The temples also bear architecture similar to the greatest Buddhist centers Vikramashila and Nalanda where the monks taught and also contained a monastery for monks who brought Buddhism down the Silk Road to  China  from where it spread to other parts of  Asia . This is why Zenji is using “upaya kausalya” or skillful means to make Buddhism and Dharmic traditions exciting and cool to young people as well as older generations.
While he fluently quotes Sanskrit and Pali, the bulk of his Dharma talks engage eloquent British motivational speaking in the realm of Tony Robbins generating excitement and enthusiasm. The information, facts or opinions appearing in the article do not reflect the views of The Chakra and The Chakra News does not assume any responsibility or liability for the same.
Since taking refuge with the 17th Karmapa in India in 2005, she turned away from Western Philosophy and materialism and has spent the last few years living and studying yoga, the Tibetan language and Tibetan Buddhist philosophy in India and Nepal. Moreover, the compound includes a cave for meditation similar to the one used by Bodhi Dharma at the Shaolin monastery of  China . Instead of merely referencing old scriptures, he also cites present day pop culture scenarios so that everyone can relate to the applicability of Dharma even in this day and age. If we are to prepare for the post-His Holiness era, we better create a realistic and honest image of ourselves to the world.
Adele is also a mother to a very active son, a qualified yoga teacher, freelance writer, part-time translator and a passionate political activist on issues related to gender, sexism, civil liberties, Tibet and human rights. Inspired by the Jatakas and Ramayana, Zen is also using the power of film to communicate dharma and will also present another epic on the Bodhisattva Warriors and Dharmapala Defenders in the near future. Recently, she worked for Free Tibet, an NGO in London and as a volunteer for the Tibet-led and staffed NGO, Tibetan Centre of Human Rights and Democracy. In addition to art exhibitions, Zen is also ushering in a new collection of “Spiritual Bling” or dharma related accessories to reflect spirituality instead of  materialism. Kalu’s claims of sexual abuse mirror those of Lodoe Senge, an ex-monk and 23-year-old tulku who now lives in Queens, New York.

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Comments to «Buddhist temple ri»

  1. Alinka writes:
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