On Aro gTér

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On Aro gTér

Postby plwk » Tue Jan 08, 2013 2:41 pm

Someone by the username of 'gendun' came on the sister site Dhamma Wheel and posted these.... from this thread

gendun wrote:
Aloka wrote:Hi gavesako,
I've only just noticed this thread - and I think that the Vajrayana group Aro gTer which the guy who wrote the blog in your first post belongs to, used to be on a cult list .
I am an “apprentice” in the Aro lineage. Aro is a lineage within the Nyingma tradition of Tibetan Buddhism
http://approachingaro.org/

Kind regards,
Aloka

Just noticed this and thought it worth going off topic to point out that the key words here are " used to be". The Aro were declared a cult by a group within the old E Sangha site.
Their authenticity is now accepted pretty much universally, including by Malcolm ( formerly Namdrol ).
I apologise for the detour.
:anjali:
gendun wrote:Due to the nature of the internet once a person or group has been blacklisted that list tends to get picked up and repeated widely as "received knowledge".
In the case of the Aro a number of senior Tibetan teachers ( this is easily verified ) came forward to endorse the validity of the Aro..whereupon a number of previous opponents ( including " Namdrol " ) made public apologies.

Btw Malcolm ( Namdrol ) no longer identifies himself as a Buddhist.

We are now way off topic.

:focus:

Does anyone here knows about this and if the above is verifiable? :thanks:
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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby Jikan » Tue Jan 08, 2013 3:57 pm

I've never seen Malcolm (as Malcolm or as Namdrol) make any such comment in public on Aro gTer. You could just ask him, though. He's not so hard to find online. The closest I've ever seen him get to acknowledging Aro gTer recently is to say they were having more fun doing their thing than their critics were in pointing out the rather obvious problems in their narrative.

As for the rest of the claims made, I don't know. There are other threads here at DW that may give some information that is relevant and useful to you...

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Aro gTer is a controversial topic, so this thread will be monitored closely. Thanks!
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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby Jikan » Tue Jan 08, 2013 4:00 pm

Of relevance, starting particularly around page 3...

http://www.dharmawheel.net/viewtopic.ph ... &hilit=aro
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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby plwk » Tue Jan 08, 2013 4:08 pm

Correction on thread link: here

Jikan, Malcolm responded to the thread and I left a question for him and up to him to respond to Gendun's claims...
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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby Jikan » Tue Jan 08, 2013 4:19 pm

Very good. I look forward to finding out what he thinks.
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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby plwk » Tue Jan 08, 2013 5:51 pm

An update, just in case the thread responses are removed from view...a kind response from Malcolm
mfesmith wrote:
plwk wrote:So malcolm, as gendun suggested earlier: that you accepted the authenticity of Aro and apologised?

I apologized for hurting people's feelings without need, that was as far as it went.
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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby Jikan » Tue Jan 08, 2013 5:53 pm

I apologized for hurting people's feelings without need, that was as far as it went.


This is from Malcolm Smith, in the thread plwk posted here. So no, it does not appear that Malcolm accepts the legitimacy of Aro gTer or their claims or whatever.

This leads me to question gendun's credibility in regards to the other claims he or she has put forward.
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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby Yudron » Tue Jan 08, 2013 8:21 pm

No one one can say that this gentleman's visions and dreams of a previous life in a small tantric community in Tibet, receiving a terma lineage for a line of female adepts, are confirmed by historical records. But whether it is a dangerous thing that he is propagating a terma tradition that probably didn't exist historically is a big deal or not is open to question. Some lamas feel these kind of things are very destructive (and this is reflected in people on this board who make strong posts about it), others think it is not a big deal.

No one can say it is authenticated in the historical sense, and you can see how one of his main disciples, Shardrol, deal with that in the thread that was linked to above.
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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby Sherab Dorje » Tue Jan 08, 2013 8:54 pm

I mean, like, who cares. Like REALLY! There is more than enough info out there in cyber space on these people from both sides of the fence. If somebody, given all the info out there, has the karma to join them then no quantity of statements by any number of individuals is going to make them not join.

So instead of just engaging in (even more) useless speculation and beating a dead horse, that has been reduced to sub atomic particles after so many years of beating, wouldn't it be better we all just engaged in something constructive?
all dressed up....jpg
all dressed up....jpg (11.94 KiB) Viewed 3119 times

I mean REALLY!
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Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby Jikan » Wed Jan 09, 2013 2:45 pm

It's over and out for this thread. If anyone has a good reason for reopening it, please PM me or another moderator and we'll consider it. Thanks.
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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby Jikan » Sat Jan 12, 2013 11:30 pm

On second thought, and at the request of a DW member, I'm reopening this thread on the condition the conversation remains civil and factual.
:cheers:
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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby sdw » Tue Jan 15, 2013 4:50 am

gregkavarnos wrote:I mean, like, who cares. Like REALLY! There is more than enough info out there in cyber space on these people from both sides of the fence. If somebody, given all the info out there, has the karma to join them then no quantity of statements by any number of individuals is going to make them not join.

So instead of just engaging in (even more) useless speculation and beating a dead horse, that has been reduced to sub atomic particles after so many years of beating, wouldn't it be better we all just engaged in something constructive?
all dressed up....jpg

I mean REALLY!
:namaste:

Hello, gregkavarnos

I'm all for 'something constructive' but I don't think that ridiculing other practitioners - no matter how inauthentic you believe them to be - is constructive or useful in any way.

Some Tibetan ngakpas I have met in Nepal were delighted to see westerners wearing those robes & continuing the ngak'phang tradition.

Shardröl
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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby Sherab Dorje » Tue Jan 15, 2013 10:53 am

sdw wrote:Some Tibetan ngakpas...
Emphasis is mine.
...delighted to see westerners wearing those robes...
I could also wear those robes, it doesn't mean anything to wear robes.
...& continuing the ngak'phang tradition.
This is where the slippery slopes start. As you are well aware of, since you are a high ranking member of the organisation being discussed. Correct?
:namaste:
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Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby Jikan » Tue Jan 15, 2013 2:59 pm

Hi SDW,

The robes worn in many of the photographs I've seen of Aro gTer practitioners appear to depart in certain ways from traditional designs I've seen others wearing. One example would be the incorporation of embroidered roses onto the white section of a red-white-red zentra (wish I had a photo of this at hand to show you what I mean! my apologies for working from memory).

Here's what I'd like to know: from your point of view, in what ways are the robes and other garments used among Aro students and teachers traditional or representative of a tradition? In what ways might they be novel? And where do those innovations come from? Are they indicative of particular characteristics of this school?

Many thanks.

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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby sdw » Wed Jan 16, 2013 12:52 am

gregkavarnos wrote:
sdw wrote:
...delighted to see westerners wearing those robes...

I could also wear those robes, it doesn't mean anything to wear robes.

Sure. The meaning is whatever people make of it.

gregkavarnos wrote:
sdw wrote:...& continuing the ngak'phang tradition.

This is where the slippery slopes start. As you are well aware of, since you are a high ranking member of the organisation being discussed. Correct?

I'm a disciple of the Aro gTér Lamas, Ngak'chang Rinpoche & Khandro Déchen, yes. To me it's quite straightforward & there is no slippery slope.

I'm aware that others have different views.

Shardröl
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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby conebeckham » Wed Jan 16, 2013 1:40 am

I have a sincere question: are the Aro folks reciting liturgy in Tibetan? Or English? And are the termas in English, as are, if I recall, the Flaming Jewel folks' practices?
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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby sdw » Wed Jan 16, 2013 2:51 am

Jikan wrote:Hi SDW,

The robes worn in many of the photographs I've seen of Aro gTer practitioners appear to depart in certain ways from traditional designs I've seen others wearing. One example would be the incorporation of embroidered roses onto the white section of a red-white-red zentra (wish I had a photo of this at hand to show you what I mean! my apologies for working from memory).

Here's what I'd like to know: from your point of view, in what ways are the robes and other garments used among Aro students and teachers traditional or representative of a tradition? In what ways might they be novel? And where do those innovations come from? Are they indicative of particular characteristics of this school?

Many thanks.

Jikan


Hello, Jikan

There are some shawls that are particular to the Aro lineage, such as the peaceful, joyous & wrathful shawls worn on special occasions (like Tsog or empowerments) by the lineage-holders. More information (& photos) available here: http://aroencyclopaedia.org/shared/text/n/ncr_kdt_ph_07_joyous_shawls_eng.php. There are also particular shawls worn by apprentices (formal students) of the Aro lineage. All these come from the vision of Aro Lingma through Ngak'chang Rinpoche. The shawl designs are not part of the gTérma but were specified by Aro Lingma.

Other than the shawls, ordained ngakpas & ngakmas wear the traditional white shamthab worn by many other ngakpas & ngakmas.


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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby sdw » Wed Jan 16, 2013 3:07 am

conebeckham wrote:I have a sincere question: are the Aro folks reciting liturgy in Tibetan? Or English? And are the termas in English, as are, if I recall, the Flaming Jewel folks' practices?

Hello, conebeckham

The Aro gTér doesn't actually contain sadhanas that are recited in any language. We practice yogic song (in Tibetan) & recite Refuge (in Tibetan & English) but most of the practices are quite essentialized. For example the Aro gTér tsog practice is simply a series of seed syllables & mantras. Ngak'chang Rinpoche & Khandro Déchen have written a short commentary on each syllable & these are usually read or recited when we practice tsog but they're not the actual text of the tsog, which is just the syllables & mantras - all sung rather than recited. The gTérmas are not written documents.


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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby Sherab Dorje » Wed Jan 16, 2013 8:32 am

sdw wrote:Sure. The meaning is whatever people make of it.
Great. So if I dressed my students up as Peter Pan and Wendy and we practiced phowa to Never-Never Land whilst worshiping the great wisdom dakini Tinkerbell in our spiritual battle against the gyalpo Captain Hook, that's cool right? That's a path to liberation, correct? Because the meaning is whatever people make of it, right? I mean, it's all emptiness in the long run, anyway. Pure vision et al...

Agreed?
:namaste:
"When one is not in accord with the true view
Meditation and conduct become delusion,
One will not attain the real result
One will be like a blind man who has no eyes."
Naropa - Summary of the View from The Eight Doha Treasures
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Re: On Aro gTér

Postby mindyourmind » Wed Jan 16, 2013 9:17 am

I think the Aro folks are ok, at least on the bits and pieces that I know about them.

I wouldn't practice there, but I don't think they do harm, and maybe they even do some good in spreading the Dharma.

I see no real reason to run them down.

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