Yes we can make 2015 the 17th Karmapa’s last visit to teach us the dharma in our country 

I am of course being perhaps a bit generous in characterizing the 17th Karmapa’s appearances here in the past as being as having anything whatsoever to do with what Buddhists as a whole in America today consider to have anything to do with how they practice Buddhism. Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche said it first. Tibetan Buddhism today is a freak show. The 17th Karmapa is a freak. Isolated. Ignorant. Corrupt. Rich. And so on. By the end of the 17th Karmapa’s 2015 visit he was reduced to travelling in secret. Everything was kept on a strict need to know basis by his people for fear anyone might ask him a question in a public audience.

Good. At least someone, presumably Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche knows what he is up against here. Rinpoche follows me. I follow him. It’s a Twitter thing. That being said all of this is beyond the 17th Karmapa’s grasp. The 17th Karmapa is a child in a man’s body, infantilized by the very process of succession that made him the 17th Karmapa in the first place, in a job he will never be man enough to make his own as so many of his predecessors as Karmapa did. Not every Karmapa was a Karmapa in more than in name.

Unfortunately for the 17th Karmapa his predecessor was a Karmapa in more than name. Not that the 17th Karmapa ever had a chance to follow in his predecessor’s footsteps. The Chinese Government whom made him 17th Karmapa saw to this. The 17th Karmapa isn’t a normal person.

What happens here, our lives as such, is beyond anything the 17th Karmapa has ever or ever will experience. It’s like my grandson explaining the appeal of playing Pokémon Go on his phone to me. I’m not a stupid person. I just don’t get. He showed what appeared on his phone, I saw what he saw, but it meant nothing to him. The same can be said of the 17th Karmapa. He simply doesn’t get the world we live in and as such, that being the case he has nothing to teach us that has anything to do with how we practice Buddhism. We bring our lives, as they are, to the teahcings of the Buddha and make said Buddhist teachings our own. This not what the 17th Karmapa is about.

The Panama Papers are a thing for us. The 17th must explain to us to our satisfaction how he came to use the same law firm used by members of the Chinese Communist Party, the Chinese Government, to hide funds received from members of the Chinese Buddhist community around the world whom support said government’s occupation of Tibet (which he then used to throw himself a Kagyu Monlom party for the ages in 2016 said to cost him millions of dollars).

The 17th Karmapa must explain to us to our satisfaction how he dropped the ball with Jamgon Kongtrul the Fourth. Job number one for a Karmapa is to guarantee the health, welfare, and well-being of the children entrusted to him, every child, to say nothing of those children whom he has recognized as Tulkus.

The 17th Karmapa must explain to us to our satisfaction how it is that the monks that raped Kalu Rinpoche as a child are presumably still monks. For all we know one or more of these monks have ended up at the 17th Karmapa’s monastic seat here, KTD, in Woodstock, New York. The 17th Karmapa must explain to us to our satisfaction how he justifies his collaboration with the Chinese Government in 2015 to recognize a Traleg Yangsi for Thrangu Monastery in occupied Tibet, thus forever cutting Traleg Rinpoche’s reincarnation from the very same people he dedicated his life to teaching.

That Situ Rinpoche collaborated with the Chinese Government to recognize a reincarnation of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche is on Situ Rinpoche. This was a crime against humanity, the end of the Trungpa line of reincarnations. Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche was the last of his kind. That Traleg Rinpoche was the last of his kind is on the 17th Karmapa.

And these are just things that happened since the 17th Karmapa’s visit in 2015. No wonder he didn’t visit us in 2016. That being said it goes without saying that the 17th Karmapa has much to answer for if he wishes to visit us in 2017. Good luck pulling that off. (I’m talking to you, Ponlop Rinpoche). Yes we can make 2015 the 17th Karmapa’s last visit to teach us the dharma in our country.



Filed under Buddhism

29 responses to “Yes we can make 2015 the 17th Karmapa’s last visit to teach us the dharma in our country 

  1. Michael

    If the Karmapa is a Chinese puppet as you seem to think, why would he say this?:

    “Q. There’s a lot of blame on the Chinese government on the destruction of environment in the Himalayan region particularly in the Tibetan plateau. What is your view?

    HHK: For the Chinese part, I think it’s because they had mistaken policies. They have been ignoring the hopes and wishes of the local Tibetan people. It’s their own mistake and what they are doing in following their policies is that they have hurt the Tibetans, in terms of their feelings, and this is something that has disappointed the people in Tibet.

    And, generally, there has been a lot of environmental destruction in Tibet. So, if you look at it from one perspective, this is something the Chinese have done; they have caused the problem. And another way of looking at it is, actually, this is happening in every country all over the world in how development happens. So the mistake or the problem actually comes down to the way we presume material development in the present day.

    In any case, this is something that has had a strong effect on the Tibetan inhabitants and the external environment in Tibet. And this has brought many difficulties because of the Chinese politics, it’s very difficult to say anything. It’s also related to the issues of Tibet. So, it’s very difficult to raise your hand and speak up. It’s a critical environmental situation and it isn’t that it only affects Tibet but also all of China and other neighboring countries.

    The situation causes a lot of effects on neighboring countries, either helping or harming them. So I think, the neighboring countries as well have the right to have a say. They not only have the right to interfere in what’s happening there [in Tibet] but they have an obligation to interfere. So the environmental situation in Tibet is something that is interconnected to Asia and the entire world. All of us need to take interest in this and provide support. I think this is very important.”


    Hardly towing the Offical line methinks.

  2. Michael

    The Karmapa on leaving Tibet – which demonstrates again that he is not a Chinese Agent:
    Published on Sep 13, 2015

    Here is the translation:
    Q: Many people have asked you about this, when you escape from Tibet in 1999, is it your own decision or you were affected by other people? Does it take a lot of time to make the decision or it’s a rush one?

    HHK: It didn’t take too much time, only several months or a year. But when it was decided finally, seems like a very quick decision. Generally, it’s my own decision. No one dares to decide it for me.

    Q: Before you left Tibet, other three leaders of Tibetan Buddhism are all in India already, is it inevitable for you to leave and join them?
    I think that’s two different things. It is not because they are there so I have to go too. It is because I am the spiritual leader of Kagyu lineage, I should take my responsibilities, fulfilling this inheritance course. I must take this from my gurus, while they were in India at that time and can’t come to Tibet. That’s one reason. And another is I’m worried when I grow up, the Chinese government will give me some political tasks and force me to say bad words about His Holiness Dalai Lama. They want me to say something on their half. I don’t think that’s right thing to do. Last but not the least reason is lots of foreigners come to see me since I was a little kid. So I always wish to go abroad and see the world. However, I’ve waited for so many years but can’t get the permission. Not only I’m not permitted to go abroad, I can’t even go everywhere in Tibet freely. There are lots of restrictions from the government. Everytime my friends come, they beg me to go to their countries. So I am determined to go.

    Q: There is a statement released from the official media of Chinese government. In this statement they say when you left Tibet, you left a letter, saying you leave to get the instrument back, it is not a betrayal to the countryman or a betrayal to the monastery.

    HHK: Yes, I left a letter. Most of the contents are the same as they stated. But there is one more thing in that letter, after all these years can’t get the permission to go abroad, I decided to leave. I didn’t escape just for some instruments.

      • Michael

        Not beside the point. He doesn’t view Tibet as part of China. It’s an important point. When he recognises an incarnation in the Tibetan region, he is considering it to be in Tibet, which pours cold water on your suggestion that he’s repatriating Rinpoches like Traleg to China.

        • And you base this on what? If you are privy to facts not known to me please share them so that I can take them into consideration. What you think the 17th Karmapa thinks is as I have previously stated is besides the point. If for instance worshippers of the 17th Karmapa have been persecuted by the Chinese Government for doing so or an instance in which it has closed down a Karma Kagyu Monastery because of its association with the 17th Karmapa I would have to rethink my critique of said Karmapa.

          • Michael

            the Karmapa states publicly:
            ” If Tibetans were given a genuine opportunity to lead their lives as they wished, preserving their language, religion and culture, they would neither be demonstrating nor sacrificing their lives. Since 1959, we Tibetans have faced unimaginable loss, yet we have found benefit in adversity. Many of us rediscovered our true identity as Tibetans. We rediscovered a sense of national unity among the people of the three provinces of Tibet. And we came to value a unifying leader, in the person of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. These factors have given us all great grounds for hope.”

            He goes on to state:
            “I call on the authorities in Beijing to see past the veneer of wellbeing that local officials present. Acknowledging the real human distress of Tibetans in Tibet and taking full responsibility for what is happening there would lay a wise basis for building mutual trust between Tibetans and the Chinese government. Rather than treating this as an issue of political opposition, it would be far more effective for Chinese authorities to treat this as a matter of basic human welfare.”

            This is hardly the Karmapa towing the Chinese political line. Kagyu followers and others alike are being persecuted and oppressed. To suggest otherwise is to ignore the ongoing genocide and human rights abuses in Tibet. The Karmapa certainly isn’t doing that.

            • Michael

              He doesn’t see Tibet as part of China and he is openly critical of the Chinese administration. Don’t know why you’re determined not to see it, but it certainly plays into Beijing’s hands for you not to and to perpetuate the propaganda that they are putting out about the Karmapa being on their side.


              There is actually also a narrative that runs opposite to the tale of the Karmapa simply waiting to return to China with the Black Hat.

              this from the Guardian:
              “The escape, almost 16 months ago, was a massive embarrassment for the Chinese government, which had recognised the Karmapa in an attempt to woo support away from the exiled Dalai Lama. After learning of his flight, Chinese officials claimed the teenager had gone to India merely to collect a sacred black hat and musical instruments belonging to his order , hinting that he would be back soon.

              The Karmapa yesterday dismissed the claim as absurd. `Why would I want to bring the hat back from India? All that would accomplish would be to place the hat on Jiang Zemin’s head.'”


              • There is nothing in this I haven’t considered. Again, the 17th Karmapa’s thinking on the subject is no substitute for facts on the ground, as I previously stated. Facts, things that happened which I can take into consideration as such.

            • This is besides the point. Give me facts on the ground to consider. If the Chinese Government has a problem with anything the 17th Karmapa has said or done while in India there will be indications of its displeasure with the 17th Karmapa that I can take account of here. There are none though to consider. On the contrary as the Panama Papers document the relationship between the Chinese Government and the 17th Karmapa could not be more mutually beneficial. Collaborating with the Chinese Government has been quite lucrative for the 17th Karmapa. If what the 17th Karmapa has been doing in India didn’t serve the Chinese Government’s interest those Chinese Buddhists whom support said government would not be giving said Karmapa money which he was caught hiding in an offshore account, all arranged by the same law firm used by members of the Chinese Communist Party to hide their own money.

          • Michael

            Well, the 16th Karmapa was able to begin rebuilding Tsurphu in 1979/1980 before he died. Howcome?

    • Michael

      The Chinese government views the Karmapa as a separatist.

      • The Chinese Government’s official narrative has the 17th Karmapa in India to retrieve the Black Crown and return it to Tsurphu Monastery. The 17th Karmapa, unlike HHDL, is openly worshiped as a living Buddha both in occupied Tibet and throughout Mainland China with the blessings of the Chinese Government. It has people in the 17th Karmapa’s inner circle as evidenced this year when it threatened a popular entertainers whom had the misfortune of being in the same audience for a teaching by the 17th Karmapa as a member of the Tibetan Government in exile. There is no narrative of the 17th Karmapa which has him not returning to Tsurphu Monastery with the Black Crown. It is only a matter of time before the Chinese Government throws the Indian Government gives up its claim on those areas that it considers to have been part of Tibet and therefore part of China to make this happening. The Modi Government could use a big win about now. First the 17th Karmapa has to secure the Black Crown though. Then HHDL will have to die. Once that happens the rest will fall into place and the 17th Karmapa will return to Tsurphu with the Black Crown. Again there is no 17th Karmapa narrative that has this playing itself otherwise. If there is one I would love to hear it.

        • Michael

          In order for you to pedal your narrative, you have to keep exaggerating China’s endorsement of the Karmapa (which you do regularly). The Chinese Government endorse him for the simple reason that it disempowers him abroad and makes it seem as though he didn’t flee their control. But the blindingly obvious discrepancy in all of this conspiracy talk is the fact that the Karmapa openly supports the Dalai Lama who is public enemy #1 of China. That of course doesn’t fit with your story at all and I’m interested in how you stitch all that contradiction together. In order to do so you have to either fabricate or exaggerate tenuous connections, downplay certain other aspects or simply ignore the Karmapa’s open criticisms of the Chinese government.

          • That the 17th Karmapa “supports” a Dalai Lama (there is no evidence that the Chinese Government considers the 17th Karmapa as support for HHDL) whom in capitulated to the United States Government’s “One China” foreign policy in return for its continued support of his government in exile (the same arraignment we have with Taiwan not coincidentally) and accepted China’s choice for 17th Karmapa as a fait accompli
            In 1992 hardly supports your argument. The devil is in the details. You have none for me to consider that I haven’t taken into account in my criticism here. That the 17th Karmapa in 2016 has collaborated is not a theory being peddled here by me but instead is a criticism based on facts previously put for here for readers of this blog to consider which said readers can accept or reject as you yourself have done here. This is no skin off my nose. This is about getting answers to the questions I have raised here which I expect someone in a position to answer them to do so. Correct me if I mistaken but based on this exchange you aren’t that person. I’ve enjoyed our little exchange here but as I have previously mentioned lacking any new information that I haven’t previously considered what you think of the 17th Karmapa is besides the point as far as I’m concerned. You like the 17th Karmapa. You don’t like my criticizing him. I get it. Message received.

            • Michael

              I don’t mind if you criticise the Karmapa, but I remain unconvinced by your entire premise that the Karmapa is working with the Chinese government’s nationalistic agenda. It’s strange how you want evidence to the contrary, whereas it is you who are making these assertions who has no real evidence. Show me where the Karmapa has ever stated his affinity with the cultural destruction of Tibet or his intention to return the hat as some promise to the Chinese government. I think you’re drawing a really long bow, but your arguments are based on hearsay and what you surmise.

              You have NO evidence to suggest that the Karmapa actually condones or protects those who abused Kalu Rinpoche. To make such large claims you really have to deliver a real reason for any of your readers to believe it. You have failed in this. This claim of yours is a true straw man.

              You are merely plonking it into a public arena as a supposition.

              You also don’t know that the Karmapa hasn’t been in touch with Jamgon Kongtrul and that he is respecting his wishes to be left out of the spotlight. Kongtrul asked publicly to be left alone. It is you who have jumped to the conclusion that he is in grave danger. There is no real reason to believe that he is. Perhaps the Karmapa is helping him to study medicine anonymously for all we know. These are all just our guesses, based on loose bits of info garnered from the Internet. Unless you are privy to some secret info that you can’t release, but I doubt it.

              I too struggle with the current state of the Kagyu, and have followed your blog with an open mind. Just letting you know that I’m not seeing much to convince me that this is all as unpleasant as you’re making it out to be.

              • Michael

                “facts on the ground” as you say…

              • Until the 17th Karmapa comes clean on the Panama Papers, I very much appreciate the points you have raised here, my criticism of His Holiness stands.
                The 17th Karmapa’s lack of transparency in this regard is his downfall as such. Let the facts be known. Or, suffer the consequences. He was caught doing something which if any other Buddhist leader that wished to teach in our country did they would never again have the opportunity to do so. Said teacher would be finished here.

  3. Sangye

    If it is ordinary to want proof of claims, then yes I am ordinary. And no, you still have not provided proof of claims.

    • Ours is an oral lineage so all you need to do is ask Khenpo Karthar Rinpoche if you insist on embarrassing yourself more than you have done here with me here.

      Rinpoche won’t go there with you either.

      It’s none of your business.

      You are nobody to us.

      In 1981 Khenpo Karthar Rinpoche saw in me a lama.

      When the 16th Karmapa passed into Parinirvana here I had an experience which
      Rinpoche thought auspicious and he decided to give me the lung and tri for Mahamudra.

      To anyone that was a member of our sangha at the time this history is known.

      Just ask them.

      Again, you are nobody to us, so they won’t tell you anything.

      Feel free to do so though if you are so inclined.

      I wanted nothing to do with being a lama.

      I was married and my wife and I were expecting our first child at the time.

      Khenpo Karthar saw it otherwise.

      Rinpoche is like that.

      I found it odd.

      Ngodrup, Khenpo Karthar Rinpoche’s translator told me that he had never witnessed anything like it before.

      I brought this up with Rinpoche afterwards.

      He told me that it was for the future and that it wasn’t something I need concern myself with until then.

      Khenpo Karthar wasn’t the first Rinpoche to go there with me in regards to my having a future role to play as a lama of the 16th Karmapa’s lineage here.

      Shamar Rinpoche told me that the 16th Karmapa would need me in the future here.

      I’m not from here.

      My first wife and I didn’t get married until 1982 and I was actually thinking about returning with the 16th Karmapa’s household to India after he died.

      Rinpoche thought otherwise.

      The rest is history.

      Here we are, it’s 2017, I still don’t want anything to do with being a lama, but it turns out they were right about what they saw in me as a 22 year old.

      At 58, like it or not, I’m a lama.

      And there is nothing that anyone can say or do about it if they think otherwise,

      Ours is an oral lineage, it has always has an oral lineage and always will be as such.

      Those that need to know, know I am a lama, those that don’t have no way of knowing one way or the other.

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