lama tsewang wrote:in fact , i must add this , if you want good Dharma Teachers and Dharma teaching in the west , for youselves and future generations , then it is important for a Western Sangha to be strengtehend here.
Sangha yes, but not necessarily ordained as monks. The Kagyud lineages only became monastic in orientation with Gampopa, Nyingma lamas are not necessarily monks, etc. What really must be strengthened is the opportunity for everyone to practice according to their inclination, whether as monastics or laity.
lama tsewang wrote:If you want high quality instruvction , and Also , high quality centers for intense study and retreats for yourselves and future generations it is vital to have a western Sangha . Having a Western Sangha , is not just to support an elite corps of monks , it is the best way to create good quality Dharma centers , that are not run as businesses .
This does not follow. Look at the current Karma Kamtsang; there are millions of dollars in holdings. It's a very big business. Now it does a lot of good things so I am not faulting that, but there is not an argument to be made that large monastic orders are not run as businesses. They most emphatically are, and probably need to be.
lama tsewang wrote:To put it bluntly , if you dont have this , youve got half baked teachers and half baked centers Low quality centers..
So Dudjom Rinpoche, Thinley Norbu Rinpoche, Chogyal Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche, Chagdud Rinpoche or Chatral Rinpoche are half baked teachers with low quality centers? I think you will find most people disagree with you on this. There are many Western teachers who are not monastics, like Sangye Khandro, Sarah Harding, Lama Palden, etc. that have completed the requisite retreat, been authorized to teach and established centers that are not at all half-baked. The issue is whether they have warmth of experience, the ability to benefit others and authorization to teach in the lineage.
lama tsewang wrote:And , truly if you think im wrong, just look , many of the centers around , do rely on monastics , yes they import them from Asia , yes , all of us can see that most of the teachers of Vajrayana here, are monastics , or trained in environments that were monastic . If they arent monks now , they were in the past. Do we always want to rely on imports???
I can't speak for you, but I don't pay much attention to the ethnicity of the master I study with. If shot with an arrow, do you insist that the doctor that removes it is Canadian? I emphatically agree that we must support Western teachers and opportunities for practice here, but not out of some misplaced sense of national identity.
lama tsewang wrote: Lets ask why these Tibetan derived traditions are weak in this respect here. and lets look to correct this.
The reasons why it is weak here are no mystery: much derives from the general Protestant atmosphere of distrust of celibate clergy, much else from the distrust of clergy in general by recovering Catholics, and lastly a general malaise with providing financial support to others amongst those drawn to Tibetan Buddhism (which probably also derives from a Calvinist view of work). There are many good reasons for establishing opportunities for full-time sangha in the West, but I am not sure calling any teacher that does not have monastic ordination half-baked makes a very good case for it.