Thank you to the people who have brought new sites to my attention.
Here’s an updated list of sites for survivors looking for support of their decision to leave their cult, people wanting to know more about the issues with existing shugden groups, and academics looking for Buddhist perspectives.
Any time I can promote a site for ex-shugden to share their experiences and knowledge, please send me a link. We’re all in this together.
Let’s keep everyone up to date and rise up to the top of the search engines!
Hi everyone. My name’s Brenda, or as you might know be better, Brenda1sun. Lawstudent63 is suuuper busy with his career right now, so I’ll be looking after the site temporarily. And I guess I’m an author now too!
I’ve got to say I’ve been a little inactive in proofing and putting up new content, but that’s because I’ve been responding to so many of your emails! As a reminder to everyone, I won’t respond to emails unless they’ve been sent from a truly anonymous email service or using a proxy like tor browser and I can tell which you use because I’m super computer savvy like that.
So why have I stopped lurking? Because I have sweet sweet delicious news!
A particular shugden group has FINALLY decided spam this site!
It only took them about, what, a year to get over their fear of engaging the site directly?
Word is, inside Kechara House, the minions were instructed to not interact with this site at all because it could hurt the lawsuit their lawyers mislead them into thinking they had. Lol. I guess that means Tsem Tulku’s predictions about winning a lawsuit against this site have been erased from Kechara House’s collective memory already.
And OMGosh their weird schizophrenia-esqe attacks are so funny! Why, I think they implied this site and others are run by just about everyone they could think of outside of Kechara House. Totally shooting in the dark I see.
To Kechara House:
AllURBase says thank you for your low quality derivatives of his art on behalf of the Chinese government, because it could push him into international recognition by the art community. Ai Weiwei, eat your heart out!
I love your mock site of delightfulsatire.wordpress.com but I’m not putting up the links because you’ll use them to collect IP addresses. You understand.
1. Recruit volunteers.
2. Fire the volunteers that ask questions.
3. Buy RM 500 supplies.
4. Give supplies to homeless over the next year and photograph, photograph, PHOTOGRAPH!
5. Find a rich person that actually makes money by donating to charities in Malaysia.
6. Buy yourself something nice to avoid compassion fatigue and put it on the charity account as supplies.
7. Trick other charitable organizations into letting you “help”and take credit for their work. Photograph, photograph, PHOTOGRAPH!
8. Intimidate people who want to see your financial statements.
That’s it! Your foreign power political front group now looks like a bona-fide charity organization.
Want a bottle of water homeless person? Say “Cheeeeeeeeese”.
I don’t think it is wise to end the counter protests against the NKT. While the deception the NKT employed to discredit the Dalai Lama and disturb his teachings was particularly hurtful, the damage being done to people who join the NKT because they don’t know about the organization is, arguably, much more severe.
It is clear that counter protests are an effective “wake up call” for communities that host the NKT and as such the NKT are very sensitive to this sort of social education.
Surely the NKT can not complain if protests that inform communities about the NKT continue for an equal amount of time as the NKT, under other names, disturbed Tibetan Buddhist teachings.
A front organization only works so long as it maintains the appearance of legitimate use. If the NKT still has a large income from the Chinese Government, but loses all its Western members, it will cease to function as a political front to attack minorities the Chinese government failed to kill or oppress.
Your cartoons are wonderful and have been used across the internet and privately.
I know I am not alone in wishing to see a new series on the relationship between the Chinese Government and shugden groups.
Thank you for artistically rendering the ideas that we have all been trying to express.
Protesters staged a demonstration outside the Thekchen New Kadampa Tradition Buddhist Centre in Bitterne, Southampton
The ISC has stated that they will dissolve on March 10, 2016, including its websites.
I believe if law enforcement looks deeper into the activities and funding of the ISC and the New Kadampa Tradition they will discover crimes have been committed that are worth the time of prosecutors.
Or maybe such a discovery is the reason for the sudden dissolution?
Another excellent investigatory piece on Exposing Kultchara.
“Martin” Chow Ming Kong, the Director of Fundraising for Kechara House and key member of Tsem Ladrang has a criminal history of successfully and fraudulently soliciting a loan of over a half a million US dollars after declaring bankruptcy. In brief, the con-artist Martin Chow, Director of Fundraising for Kechara House, stole a fortune with lies. Was this money then given to Tsem Tulku and Kechara House?
Brilliant work at Exposing Kultchara!
I just wanted to thank you all for searching using such hilarious, “I can’t even breathe”, terms to find this site. Here are some of my favorites:
“is tsem rinpoche a straight-faced liar”, “dorje shugden exorcism”, “is tsem rinpoche a compulsive manipulator”, “is tsem rinpoche a liar and sadist”, “tsem tulku rinpoche fake”, “kechara house cult”, “dont trust tsem rinpoche”, “is kechara recognized by malaysian buddhist association” (no, they are not), “why tsem rinpoche obsessively promoting himself”
More importantly, almost ALL of your search terms were listed as unknown because you used a search engine that hides that information from the sites you visit. I’m very happy with that result because everyone needs to use caution to protect their identity online.
Also, I would like to remind everyone that I am doing exceedingly well since I left my shugden group. My health and professional life are excellent and I haven’t had any accidents or bad omens unlike many in the Kechara House group who have suffered serious accidents resulting in broken bones, mental illness, car accidents, cirrhosis due to lifestyle induced fatty liver disease, debt, and many other unfortunate circumstances at a rate that is alarming for such a small group. I attribute my good fortune to my being honest with myself and others, working hard, and finding a supportive social circle of people with integrity.
Another good read for people considering the legitimacy of shugden organizations on exposingkultchara.wordpress.com
Recently I’ve heard rumors of yet another book in the works about Tsem Tulku and Kechara House. I would love to hear about it. I recognize the need for secrecy and when you’re ready to spread the word we’ll be here.
I’m literally making room on my shelf!
Out of the blue, I was allowed to review a manuscript for a book in progress about Tsem Tulku and Kechara House. It dawned on me that the work will become more than just an account of events. From what I’ve seen, I have no doubt it will be a fundamental historical work that breaks new ground and that will have a deep affect on how governments handle disingenuous organizations. Turning through the pages, I was shown new facets of the Tibetan struggle to exist and inexplicable insight into the mechanics of China’s genocidal agenda. More impressive still, the book will be backed up by over 9,000 archived documents from all sides so future generations can probe deeper and contemplate the catastrophic naivety of racism and the individual consequences of “blindly” following illegal orders.
But all the chips haven’t fallen and the story isn’t over yet. I’ve been told the publishing date has been pushed back three times already to accommodate new material and there is a possibility drafts will be made available online prior to its finalization.
I’m looking forward to “Broken, But Not Powerless,..” and I’m honored to be able to write the first endorsement.
[Below is a transcript of a conversation. It has been edited to remove specific details and restructured to provide a clearer account of events by combining and rephrasing sentences. Some parts of sentences were added, such as “Eventually” to show the time relationship of events and “At our center in Malaysia,” to provide a context. We felt apprehensive about including sentences about Tom Tulku’s sexual history, however, we also felt it would be unethical to omit it due to Tom Tulku’s claimed status as a monk. We would like to thank the previous director for taking time out of her busy schedule to shed light on the events that led to the creation of a shugden personality cult.]
In the 1990’s I was the director of a Vajrayana Buddhist center in Malaysia. Our center was the first to host Tom Tulku in Malaysia.
When I first heard about Tom from my lama I was told a story, not about a monk sent to raise funds for the monastery, which already had representatives raising funds in Malaysia, but a story about a disturbed young man that the monastery felt should leave for the safety of the other monks. I don’t remember everything he said, but I remember being told about Tom threatening violence against other monks and emotionally blackmailing the monastery by sending fake suicide letters which blamed senior monks for not recognizing him, and then running away to a city hotel so they would believe he had taken his life. The monastery never had experience with such disturbed attention hungry individuals and as poor as they were they gave money to upgrade the property Tom lived in with amenities like imported window screens and humored his pretense of being a master teacher equal to the most senior monks to avoid provoking a tantrum. A visiting monk told me before Tom left he had earned the nickname “dzuma” or fake because whenever Tom learned of a deceased lama who’s reincarnation was not yet recognized he would ask for the date that they died and appeared disappointed when it occurred after he was born.
Tom was allowed to live at our center because our guru sympathized with Tom and his monastery. Tom lacked a monastic education because he attended almost no teachings while he squatted on the property of a dead lama Tom claimed had given him permission to live in his house and invited him to India. There was some doubt about this because Tom only arrived after the lama’s death and the lama told no one this young man would be coming to live at his residence. There was no proof the deceased lama had given his permission. At our center in Malaysia, after a week of hinting and asking, we allowed Tom to teach on some basic texts, such as the Lam Rim, for our center. Tom grew frustrated with his inability to answer questions about the texts and would say he would not teach hours before teachings or leave in the middle of a teaching. Contrary to Tom’s current stories about his coming to Malaysia, Tom insisted on teaching. Eventually Tom found followers that were not from our center who wanted to use him for profit by promoting him as a “High Lama”. Tom started speaking ill of our center, our center’s guru, HHDL, and spreading the practice of dolgyal. After this we no longer allowed Tom to teach at our center, though he continued to live there. Tom would often leave the center in layman’s clothes with older men we believed were his boyfriends. We never pressed the issue with him because we regarded him as a wayward young man we were entrusted to care for, but when asked he would say that sex was just a bodily function like shitting. After Tom threatened a member of our center he was told he must leave or the police would be called.
It makes me sad that Tom fell into that bad group that continues to use him for profit and keeps him from repairing his samaya with the Buddha’s lineage.
(DICTATED BUT NOT READ 2014)
You might notice that there are many tags that are, more or less, uniformly associated with all the posts here. This is done in order ensure that the posts are indexed correctly, by general subject, on google and other search engines. Shugden groups and individuals whose position in shugden groups are made known to the public through websites are among the tags. This does not indicate any individual article is about them. It is merely a tool to ensure the content is indexed within the correct superfamilies of subjects.
My house has always been the home for spirits. The building itself is a composite of colonial and new renovation. The previous owner kept a Buddhist shrine for the spirits and insisted that I continue making offerings to ease their suffering. Initially I had doubts the house was actually haunted. A few times I have seen unusual movement of objects in the house when I walked into a room. It was as if someone was running away and bumped them slightly. Also once I locked myself out of the house. I had come home late and at the time we did not have cell phones. I knew I could not get a locksmith until morning. I sat on the porch thinking about how long it would take to walk to a relative’s home when I heard the door unlock. From then on I felt affection.
The original Buddha statues in the shrine were very old and experiencing bronze disease. I am not a Buddhist and the subject of deities is foreign to me. I had intended to replace all the statues, but I bought a single large shugden statue from a local statue vendor who told me that this deity was a substitute for all because he was Buddha, Lama, Bodhisattva, and Protector all in one. I followed the vendor’s instructions for inviting shugden into my home. I made offerings daily and heeded his warnings that I could never be disrespectful to or throw away this statue without bad effects.
I don’t claim to be psychic, but when I brought it home the shrine room felt unusually dark and made me feel nervous, like a fight was going to break out. It did not stop there though. I began to feel dizzy and cold inside, like some of my organs had their blood circulation cut off. My coordination became bad and I misplaced my foot while walking up stairs often and broke my front teeth, which I payed a large amount to have repaired. Twice at night I woke up to the sound of crackling wood and someone rolling and moaning coming from the ceiling, which made me run outside because I believed the house was on fire.
My sister recommended a spiritualist who I invited into my house to spend a night. His diagnosis was that removing the Buddhas, which had prevented the spirits’ negative karma from ripening, and replacing with shugden, which woke up and amplified negative karma, transformed the house into a personal hell for the spirits. I was surprised that he was saying this about shugden because the vendor spoke about the deity with the utmost praise. In the end I agreed to have an actual Buddhist monk bless the house and replace the original statues with a new shrine. After this my health improved and the house felt peaceful again. Not long after this, the leg of the old shrine broke and the shugden statue slid into the wall and broke. After it broke, I could see it was made from very cheap materials, but made to look high end on the outside. My sister says shugden is the fake rolex of Buddhas. People say shugden is very impressive and a Buddha in order to make a profit from you, but later you realize it is low quality and fake.
Imagine you are Jewish, you just finished breakfast and are leaving for work to find your car, house, and neighborhood has been spray painted with swastikas.
Imagine you are African American and you are waking from sleep to the sound of your toddler crying and cast across the walls of your bedroom is a muted yellow light of flames. Pulling back the curtains you see dozens of men and women hiding their identities in white costumes to either side of a burning cross. Your first thought is your family.
Imagine, after your Buddhist community declared their position on shugden, your neighborhood and the neighborhoods of other members were spray painted with the image of a deity vowed to kill you because you practice teachings that come from another lineage of Vajrayana. http://www.thestar.com.my/story/?file=%2f2012%2f8%2f15%2fcentral%2f11847453&sec=central
In Malaysia, a certain non-Tibetan shugden group uses graffiti, anonymous packages, threatening letters, and fliers in an attempt to intimidate Buddhists. They particularly target neighborhoods known to have Geluk, Kagyu, Sakya, and Nyingma Buddhists and ex-members of their group that know too much.
It doesn’t stop there however as in 2011 they used their “bio” team to target non-shugden Geluk centers in other countries as well. Notably scattering fliers at Vajrayana centers as they visited under the guise of being devotees of His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
In 2012, as part of their intimidation campaign, which included illegal graffiti of people’s homes and businesses, they also funded “street art” in proximity to Tibetan Buddhist organizations and populations. Note that this shugden group has no physical presence in these communities. The proximity to ethnic Tibetans and the extreme distance from the Malaysian based group shows the intention.
For example, in 2012 a shugden mural was painted in Richmond Virgina, 9 minutes from the Kagyupa Ekoji Buddhist Sangha. The shugden group behind the mural has its nearest center (tax dodge) over 2,600 miles away.
Another mural that was on West Adams Blvd, Los Angeles California, is in the center of a large Tibetan population and many non-shugden Vajarayana centers. Once again, the Malaysian group has no physical presence there.
Murals were also placed in the center of Tibetan populations in Berkeley, CA, and New York City. The murals are touted by shugden sock puppets online as being proof of “acceptance” by those regions, but once again there is no physical presence by the funding group.
I also have personal experience with this as I am an ex-member of the Malaysian based shugden group whose neighborhood was blanketed with hundreds of shugden fliers and vandalized after I left the organization over the organization’s lack of ethics. The message was clear. “We know where you live and we’re willing to break the law to keep your mouth shut.”
Possibly more egregious than the abduction of children recognized as tulkus and more absurd than an atheistic government claiming authority over reincarnation, the People’s Republic of China perpetrates a clumsy game of bait and switch using a menagerie of con-men, disenchanted Tibetans looking for material gain, and the naïve who believe China has changed their ways even as over 138 Tibetans have immolated themselves to refute this point.
Let’s go over some of the notable inconsistencies [this list may be updated]:
Hijacking the Legacy of Uninvolved Buddhist Masters:
The most prominent Shugden groups make a point to load excessive emphasis on their relationship with deceased Buddhist masters. This is done to give an appearance of authenticity to the group without the complications that would arise if the teacher was able to voice their objections.
In the case of the late Zong Rinpoche, it is clear from the accounts of his actual students that the respected Rinpoche rejected the sectarian practice of shugden after a heartfelt discussion with His Holiness the Dalai Lama and advised his students to end their supplications to the vow breaking spirit as well. Despite this, some people have exaggerated their extremely brief involvement with the late Buddhist master, hijacked his legacy, and, in the absence of Zong Rinpoche’s actual students, have convinced others they are following the Buddhist master’s instructions faithfully with historical fiction of their own design. The thieving of images, re-purposed and falsely claimed by shugden groups with no genuine affiliation with Zong Rinpoche, has become such a widespread problem that Zong’s students have been advised to watermark or add the name of the photographer to all photos before placing online. More than one person has had web hosts remove images of Zong, which they personally took, because of complaints by shugden groups which, after publishing the photos on their own websites, claimed to hold the copyright.
Rejecting the Core Tradition to Promote the Extraneous:
Excepting the enlightened deities explicitly introduced by the tantras, protector practices are not unique to or fundamental to any form of unadulterated Buddhism. Protector practices in Buddhism are, in fact, extraneous and often contingent upon a given spirit, ghost, demon, god, or, dare I say, human’s fulfillment of the vows they have made. The argument for shugden, or rather for the sectarian practice aimed at eliminating all other forms of Buddhism, or, even further still, for the believability of China’s agenda as per rhetoric that an inherently non-Buddhist practice is a reason for supposed Buddhists to attack Buddhist teachers, monastics, and monasteries, is incoherent.
We are expected to believe disputes over shugden are genuine grievances by Buddhists, but the idea that a Buddhist, let alone a Vajrayanist, would reject the living masters of their lineage, that supplied them with their empowerments and transmissions, and separate themselves from their monasteries out of devotion to a mere protector practice is preposterous.
On June 16, 2015 this website was named, as expected, in a lawsuit by Kechara House “Buddhist” Association Malaysia filed in the jurisdiction of the California Northern District Court, USA on behalf of “His Eminence” Tsem “Tulku” “Rinpoche”, Burcha Bugayeff. The suit was initiated by Li Kim Phng, the host of SyFy Asia’s program “Paranormal Zone”.
The purpose of including our website, among others, in their “Ex Parte Application For Order Granting Leave to Take Limited Discovery Prior to Rule 26 Conference” was to obtain information on internet critics before establishing the validity of their accusations of defamation.
Kechara House made no attempt to contact me, so I can infer that Kechara House intended to use the court to indirectly discover my, and other authors, identity. This event lends credibility to the anonymous descriptions of underhanded methods used by Kechara House to censor ex-employees and critics. If Kechara House would like to argue as to why this is not the case, they may still contact me through the comments section.
Following two application denials , Kechara House voluntarily dismissed their lawsuit against online critics. The manner in which Kechara House conducted itself makes one wonder if they had initially intended to continue the lawsuit following the discovery of the identities of internet critics or if it was only a means to identify targets for meaningful threats and character assassinations.
I have been informed that Kechara House’s decision to dismiss the lawsuit was not based solely on the court’s repeated non-compliance with their wishes, but also due to the information that would have been brought before the court to establish the facts of the alleged defamation.
It is with a certain amount of disappointment that the lawsuit was dismissed, but a victory none the less. The purpose of this website has never been solely to inform, but to set an example.
Thank you, Burcha Bugayeff, for demonstrating the protections afforded to Freedom of Speech by the United States of America’s legal system and for producing material which documents the false conspiracy narratives and tactics employed by your organization.
As a particular Shugden cult seeks out further funding they have begun to redirect their attention to non-English language demographics that are unable to investigate the cult in their native language due to language barriers. Thai, Indonesian, Iranian, and Chinese Buddhists are particularly at risk.
In the past, shugden cults have misrepresented themselves as friends and followers of His Holiness the Dalai Lama in order to defraud unknowing groups of Buddhists of donations. This has occurred in modern Tibet and, until recently, in Malaysia and Singapore.
For that reason, I would like to ask speakers of more than one language to translate material concerning shugden cults and describe in several languages your experience with shugden sectarianism.
“Freedom of expression is the matrix, the indispensable condition, of nearly every other form of freedom.”
U.S. Supreme Court Justice Benjamin N. Cardozo in Palko v. Connecticut
Freedom of speech is
Freedom of speech is
Freedom of speech is my soul:
the ability to recount my experiences, to confer ideas and reciprocate my agreement.
Do you remember when I was told to bite my tongue? Do you remember when they told me to shut up or they’d bankrupt me with lawsuits? Do you remember when I deleted my accounts so they couldn’t send more threats?
No. Because I ran. Because I caved in under the pressure, BECAUSE I made a deal to save my career: MY future.
You had nothing, no one would take your side. I never hated you, I barely knew you, but I SCREWed YOU because there was nothing to protect me if I told the truth.
Didn’t they teach you in school; the law can’t help you if no one comes forward with proof.
Did you smell the burnt evidence on my clothes? Did you see my sleepless reflection in the hotel mirror after my trans-Pacific flight?
Did you hear the tension in my wrists as I accepted that a troupe of goons rule the world?
As a certain shugden cult falls apart, it is important for the survivors to erase their connections. I suggest using google alerts for all the names you’ve used online and do a comprehensive comb through of all the sites you can remember and find through search engines. And never ever delete an email account unless every other linked account has been cleaned and deleted.
It may be difficult, but to restore your reputation you must take control of the blogs and articles you wrote on behalf of your group and delete them along with all the comments you left on other blogs using your name. I know it’s hard to erase chunks of your life and even harder if your name is on books that are still for sale online.
There are many automated services to speed up the deletion of all individuals posts, tweets, comments, etc.. Don’t let the urgency you feel to cover your tracks cause you to pass up the opportunity to review what you’ve written and use the accounts to apologize to people you’ve harassed for your group. I took the time to contact people who had not already blocked my accounts and explain that I was wrong, that I had left the group, and that I felt remorse.
In my case I was a major contributor to the success of a shugden cult and as a result have spent many nights afraid of what might appear on my google alerts tomorrow. I’ve grown accustomed to the routine now. Check email, delete content, and wait for it to disappear from google cache. It’s not that hard once you get used to it.
I have decided to edit comments to replace the names of cult leaders and actual persons with pseudonyms. I recognize this is not “right” because I am censoring my readers to a degree. My decision to censor is to protect commenters who have used their ISP assigned IP address instead of a proxy and/or other identifiers.
The laws of the world are dynamic and imperfect and I cannot, in clear conscience, introduce my readers to unexpected dangers.
That being said, I am not removing or editing links.