Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby Malcolm » Thu Jun 23, 2011 7:48 pm

ronnewmexico wrote:Regarding the terminology used.."story".

Perhaps this is unintended but the way this is being used infers some differing tale.
Past lives being perceived by one may indeed, as most here know, be a progressive thing for some.
With more spiritual understanding comes more recollection.
On occasion a circumstance may also presents in which the elicitation of a memory of past lives ensues.
A past spiritual life of attainment is perhaps replicated in this life. As that replication occurs prior capacity may also occur.

So I would say it is quite normal for one to have them not one day and have them the next.

Just to clarify that as the term seemed or could be taken to infer a story was being told.



Buddhas have perfect recall of their past lives. In fact, any highly realized bodhisattva on the stages will.

My point is that tulkus with no or hazy memories of past lives does not make for impressive tulkus.

N
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby ronnewmexico » Thu Jun 23, 2011 7:51 pm

I agree with that 100%

By the useage of the wording here, the term "story" could infer creative or constructive recollection.

I'd guess that is not at all the case.
It was probably not intended but could well be inferred by some that read this. Which would be quite unfortunate. Especially in the event one familiar with him reads this.
So I have clarified.

It was added as others are now useing this term as well.

He says now this..... would not infer a creative construction.
His story now is....infers a creative constructive componant.

Sometimes those of the very least spiritual attainments have recollections. General George Patton to some rumor was a advent supporter of the notion of reincarnation based in part on his "feelings" he had previous lives as a battle commander in various capacities.
So it can mean nothing at all as well. It may just speak to a past life spiritual attainment of some sort not now apparent at all.

Imagine being lost in a cycle of battle commander and then hell and then battle commander again and again...what pain!!! Over and over.
I'd guess even I may start to rember things in those lost cycles of human lives. It would be so painful.
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby username » Thu Jun 23, 2011 8:04 pm

Now from no memory to hazy recognition and being an umimpressive tulku! This is not right and might also need the attention of school heads, specially at source.

Kunzang wrote:
Namdrol wrote:I have not seen the movie, but I remember our argument on E-Sangha. At best, Gesar is ambivalent about the tulku system -- but when push comes to shove, he believes he is a tulku of an awakened master even though he has no memories of his past life, and so on. So his faith in the tulku system is not really an issue.


On E-Sangha he denied have memories of his past life when I challenged him about it -- that is a fact.

Whether he has changed his story since then is another matter.


He has changed his story. Last August, he tweeted: "Yes I have memories from my past life, at first I thought they were dreams but I never remembered actually dreaming them!"

http://twitter.com/#!/Chewyguru/status/20940279204


The tweet mentioning "at first" could be refering to many years ago. Also the message of the tweet is that he is sure he is the tulku, as major masters said, not the implied opposite which is a total misrepresentation. "Changing story" is an unkind term too, to put it mildly. I wouldn't use such phrases when questioning the recognition by great masters, school heads, or even in case of discussion regarding any person.
Dzogchen masters I know say: 1)Buddhist religion essence is Dzogchen 2)Religions are positive by intent/fruit 3)Any method's OK unless: breaking Dzogchen vows, mixed as syncretic (Milanese Soup) 4)Don't join mandalas of opponents of Dalai Lama/Padmasambhava: False Deity inventors by encouraging victims 5)Don't debate Ati with others 6)Don't discuss Ati practices online 7) A master told his old disciple: no one's to discuss his teaching with some others on a former forum nor mention him. Publicity's OK, questions are asked from masters/set teachers in person/email/non-public forums~Best wishes
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby dzoki » Thu Jun 23, 2011 8:59 pm

caveman wrote:Well there are some mistakes in this movie.

Gesar says that his friend in Halifax, Dylan Henderson was the first western caucasian TULKU.

WRONG

Lets try George Leslie Dawson (1931 - 2003) from Toronto Canada who was recognized by the 16th Karmapa in the late 1960's as the incarnation of Mipham Rinpoche. He was given the title of the Venerable Namgyal Rinpoche.


Well, "Namgyal Rinpoche" was overly dubious guy, and it is not really clear that he got the recognition he claimed to have. To my knowledge he also had never provided any document supporting his claims about his recognitions by HH: Gyalwa Karmapa and Kyabje Dudjom Rinpoche.
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby Malcolm » Thu Jun 23, 2011 9:25 pm

username wrote: I wouldn't use such phrases when questioning the recognition by great masters, school heads, or even in case of discussion regarding any person.


There is only one person who for sure I accept as the reincarnation of the person they are supposed to be the reincarnation, and that person is Chogyal Namkhai Norbu. That is based on events I have related elsewhere.

As for the rest of them, well you know what I think of the tulku system in general.

I am not in the habit of accepting things merely because some person with a high worldly position [and yes, by that I mean all the high lamas in Tibetan Buddhism] says it. I keep my own counsel with regards to these things, keeping Tibetan cultural institutions like tulku recognitions separate from the Dharma.

N
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby username » Thu Jun 23, 2011 10:38 pm

Namdrol wrote:
username wrote: I wouldn't use such phrases when questioning the recognition by great masters, school heads, or even in case of discussion regarding any person.


There is only one person who for sure I accept as the reincarnation of the person they are supposed to be the reincarnation, and that person is Chogyal Namkhai Norbu. That is based on events I have related elsewhere.

As for the rest of them, well you know what I think of the tulku system in general.

I am not in the habit of accepting things merely because some person with a high worldly position [and yes, by that I mean all the high lamas in Tibetan Buddhism] says it. I keep my own counsel with regards to these things, keeping Tibetan cultural institutions like tulku recognitions separate from the Dharma.

N


Hi Namdrol,
Just back from shopping. You edited my quote again, the quote was:

"Changing story" is an unkind term too, to put it mildly. I wouldn't use such phrases when questioning the recognition by great masters, school heads, or even in case of discussion regarding any person.


I just meant it is not very kind or polite to say phrases like "changing his story" in case of anyone as I said. Specially as he has chosen rightly this time not to involve himself. Last time too I unsuccessfully asked him to keep silent. Also the phrase "not impressive tulku" is not very nice either. Your choice though, specially as it seems you are allowed to say such phrases here. It is better to be a bit kinder to absent people not defending themselves but this is just my opinion.

As to the question of tulkus there are two points. One that as said by a certain high Sakya master in an interview, IIRC, it has it's problems in expedient untrue recognitions and abuse but on the whole it has been a great blessing. And as he said as the Kaliyuga gets deeper it will be destroyed and it's great benefits withdrawn. So the dark forces will kill it off within generations or at most centuries, why be their vanguard? Secondly, you are free to have your opinion as is our tradition but the school heads respect the major tulku lines and the few blood lineages (Khon & Mindrolling) as very valid and intentions of Chenresig. In case of the Dalai Lama and Karmapa reincarnations it is very important to many people's practices and also social cohesion. The Dalai Lama could have said I am all of them but at great cost he said honestly he is sure he is the 5th and 13th and not sure of the rest. Also most of us genuinely do beleive in the extremely important Karmapa rebirths. And the other major ones, Dudjoms Khyentses Knogtruls, too. The very few Tibetan lamas who in secret dismiss the Dalai Lamas Karmapas and other big reincarnations are known despite what they think. It is very brave and honest and in my opinion admirable of you, truly, to say so publicly but you are in a very small minority. Not just due to expedience but the major tulkus, some of whom are major tertons, are proven for most of us by various means. So we have to agree to disagree and if you do not see the damage voicing such wrong opinion, in our belief as a majority not yours obviously, causes then again that is your free choice you are free to excercise, as is the choice of words you employ as I said. All the best to you and if I might say a few words of advice, you are free to ignore, 'with the high and mighty always a little patience'. And who knows you might change your opinion on this issue later too. Best wishes.
Last edited by username on Sat Jul 09, 2011 2:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
Dzogchen masters I know say: 1)Buddhist religion essence is Dzogchen 2)Religions are positive by intent/fruit 3)Any method's OK unless: breaking Dzogchen vows, mixed as syncretic (Milanese Soup) 4)Don't join mandalas of opponents of Dalai Lama/Padmasambhava: False Deity inventors by encouraging victims 5)Don't debate Ati with others 6)Don't discuss Ati practices online 7) A master told his old disciple: no one's to discuss his teaching with some others on a former forum nor mention him. Publicity's OK, questions are asked from masters/set teachers in person/email/non-public forums~Best wishes
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby Dechen Norbu » Fri Jun 24, 2011 3:15 am

My take on the tulku system is pretty simple: unless one is a direct tulku, one better stay silent and have no public recognition. Only direct tulkus should be given the title. That would avoid a lot of trouble. The tulku system has been used as a pretext for all sorts of political games. Every aristocratic family is filled to their ears with tulkus. It's not a secret that when a son of a wealthy Tibetan family is to be born, vacant titles and positions are scanned to see which ones are available. It's a freaking shame, that's what it is.
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby ronnewmexico » Fri Jun 24, 2011 3:57 am

to add as a general comment not to anyone in particular..

there are warts in all organized religions.
Those that take these things hardest to my experience are those that have unrealistic views of a religion and its relationship to the politic of the area it inhabits.

One author I have read described ancient tibet as a mandella of perfection in which all was religion and all were happy..

Not true of course. But all religions in their formal structural result have glitches and glabs.
Dharma as has been pointed out is another issue entirely.
To my opinion at one point in time the Tulku position had a very real necessity and provided real aid to dharma in those areas.
Perhaps not now..I am not qualified to make such distinctions or judgements. I will leave that to others.
Threads such as these,(this one has not as yet) can easily turn into pure slams by some that hold agenda.
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby Kunzang » Fri Jun 24, 2011 6:51 am

username wrote:Now from no memory to hazy recognition and being an umimpressive tulku! This is not right and might also need the attention of school heads, specially at source.

Kunzang wrote:
Namdrol wrote:I have not seen the movie, but I remember our argument on E-Sangha. At best, Gesar is ambivalent about the tulku system -- but when push comes to shove, he believes he is a tulku of an awakened master even though he has no memories of his past life, and so on. So his faith in the tulku system is not really an issue.


On E-Sangha he denied have memories of his past life when I challenged him about it -- that is a fact.

Whether he has changed his story since then is another matter.


He has changed his story. Last August, he tweeted: "Yes I have memories from my past life, at first I thought they were dreams but I never remembered actually dreaming them!"

http://twitter.com/#!/Chewyguru/status/20940279204


The tweet mentioning "at first" could be refering to many years ago. Also the message of the tweet is that he is sure he is the tulku, as major masters said, not the implied opposite which is a total misrepresentation. "Changing story" is an unkind term too, to put it mildly. I wouldn't use such phrases when questioning the recognition by great masters, school heads, or even in case of discussion regarding any person.


Didn't intend any offense by my comment, but rather was just using the same language of the previous post.

Also, I don't see Namdrol's use of the phrase as indicative of any disrespect either; certainly no unkindness to it.

Given that on e-sangha he said he didn't have any memories (I was on e-sangha too, and remember that thread) and now more recently he said he does have memories, then, in fact, the story he tells online about himself has changed. In my opinion that seems like a positive change, since usually you hear that tulkus have memories when they're very young children but later can't recall them. Maybe it's an indication of maturation in his practice? I don't know, but anyway I didn't mean any disrespect by the use of that phrase; and most certainly I had no unkind intention.
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby Adamantine » Fri Jun 24, 2011 7:07 am

What are we supposed to expect of Bodhisattvas
Namdrol, perfect recall of their past life? Of all their lives?
Or simply some relative recall of the immediate last life, similar
to an average persons memory of their childhood?
Just wondering....

And can you site the sources that say this?

You seem to believe N.Norbu is an actual reincarnation of
who he's supposed to be because the text he wrote was
practically identical to his predecessors without him
seeing it in this life, correct? But are you implying he is
not actually a proper (or impressive) Tulku because
he doesn't have full blown memories?
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby kalden yungdrung » Fri Jun 24, 2011 7:08 am

Namdrol wrote:Just get rid of the whole damn tulku thing once and for all. It is a completely corrupt system based on money and power.

N



Tashi delek,


Am 108% in line with your opinion. :D

Our His Holiness the 33rd Menri Abbot, is chosen by the dough ball election. The name of the candidates are put in small dough balls and then the bowl is shaken and the dough ball with the name rolls out will be the new Menri Abbot or our new Bon Leader

So we don't have a Tulku lineage but a more "elected way" of chosing a new Lineage Holder.

But like you told it is based on power and money or like i also say sometimes on politics, diplomacy and strategy a very wellknown point of view and acting inside the Tibetan history


Some questions:

- Who did start with this Tulku tradition?
- Can you give some examples, of your above stated money and power politics?


Best wishes
KY
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby dzoki » Fri Jun 24, 2011 7:51 am

kalden yungdrung wrote:- Who did start with this Tulku tradition?


1st Karmapa, Dusum Khyenpa, started it by leaving a letter to his students, when and where to find his tulku - Karma Pakshi, so Karma Pakshi was the first oficially recognized tulku. Then after him there was a Shamar tulku during the fourth Karmapa (the 1st Shamarpa was a student of the 3rd Karmapa), so these two were the first ones I think, then gradualy there were more and more and the system became adopted also by other Kagyu lineages and then all the lineages outside Kagyu circle.
Also some of the tulkus were not tulkus from the very begining of their tulku line, but they were counted back. For example we now have 14th Dalailama, but the real first Dalailama was the 3rd one, however the officials "counted" two incarnations back, so that the number was higher - this would add to the status and prestige of the tulku. There are also tulkus who are said to have the 21st generation, but this is either due to very short lifespan of their predecessors or it is due to this counting back.
The tulku system had its purpose in Karma Kagyu lineage, but now I think it has become a burden, however no high ranked lama has really guts to stop this. Even Shamar rinpoche for example said that the system should be discontinued, yet he continues to recognize new tulkus. Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche also said same thing, I don´t know whether he has recognized any tulku since then or not.
One way to stop this would be if people in the West stopped jumping on this bandwagon, if they ignored all new tulkus instead of welcoming them with pomp, maybe this would make the higher-ups in the East realize something. But people in the West in general love pomp and personality cults. So I guess we are screwed here.
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby kalden yungdrung » Fri Jun 24, 2011 9:23 am

dzoki wrote:
kalden yungdrung wrote:- Who did start with this Tulku tradition?


1st Karmapa, Dusum Khyenpa, started it by leaving a letter to his students, when and where to find his tulku - Karma Pakshi, so Karma Pakshi was the first oficially recognized tulku. Then after him there was a Shamar tulku during the fourth Karmapa (the 1st Shamarpa was a student of the 3rd Karmapa), so these two were the first ones I think, then gradualy there were more and more and the system became adopted also by other Kagyu lineages and then all the lineages outside Kagyu circle.



Tashi delek,

Thanks for your reply.

- What formed the motivation / reason to establish the Tulku lineage within Karma Kagyud?


Best wishes
KY
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby dzoki » Fri Jun 24, 2011 9:55 am

kalden yungdrung wrote:
dzoki wrote:
kalden yungdrung wrote:- Who did start with this Tulku tradition?


1st Karmapa, Dusum Khyenpa, started it by leaving a letter to his students, when and where to find his tulku - Karma Pakshi, so Karma Pakshi was the first oficially recognized tulku. Then after him there was a Shamar tulku during the fourth Karmapa (the 1st Shamarpa was a student of the 3rd Karmapa), so these two were the first ones I think, then gradualy there were more and more and the system became adopted also by other Kagyu lineages and then all the lineages outside Kagyu circle.



Tashi delek,

Thanks for your reply.

- What formed the motivation / reason to establish the Tulku lineage within Karma Kagyud?


Best wishes
KY


I guess interdependent arising?
Interdependent arising due to the meeting of students' devotion and also students' clinging to their guru and guru's compassion and previous aspirations? Just my guess, it would best to ask Dusum Khyenpa himself :smile:
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby Sönam » Fri Jun 24, 2011 10:06 am

The best way to get rid of that tulku business is to considere that we are all tulkus ...

Sönam
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby Adamantine » Fri Jun 24, 2011 10:28 am

Sönam wrote:The best way to get rid of that tulku business is to considere that we are all tulkus ...

Sönam


well that would render the concept of tulku as bodhisattva consciously choosing their rebirth as completely null. the only thing we all are is reincarnated. to say we are all tulkus is like saying we are all Buddhas. We may all have Buddha-nature but we're not Buddhas until we've purified all stains...
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby Adamantine » Fri Jun 24, 2011 10:36 am

Namdrol wrote:

Buddhas have perfect recall of their past lives. In fact, any highly realized bodhisattva on the stages will.

My point is that tulkus with no or hazy memories of past lives does not make for impressive tulkus.

N


I seem to recall hearing the 17th Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje reply to a question like this and saying he did not have clear memories of his last life, because of obstacles
related to obscurations developed during the rebirth process, connected to the parents-- which inhibited his clarity. I may be not remembering what he said perfectly, so don't take this at face value. But I also understood that in general a highly realized Lama may also lose clarity and even develop obscurations or even more radical difficulties in the next life if some of their students break samaya in a serious way-- due to the interdependence of the vajra Mandala.
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby kalden yungdrung » Fri Jun 24, 2011 11:14 am

Adamantine wrote:
Namdrol wrote:

Buddhas have perfect recall of their past lives. In fact, any highly realized bodhisattva on the stages will.

My point is that tulkus with no or hazy memories of past lives does not make for impressive tulkus.

N


I seem to recall hearing the 17th Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje reply to a question like this and saying he did not have clear memories of his last life, because of obstacles
related to obscurations developed during the rebirth process, connected to the parents-- which inhibited his clarity. I may be not remembering what he said perfectly, so don't take this at face value. But I also understood that in general a highly realized Lama may also lose clarity and even develop obscurations or even more radical difficulties in the next life if some of their students break samaya in a serious way-- due to the interdependence of the vajra Mandala.



Tashi delek,

Thanks for your reply.

In case of H.H. the 17th Gyalwa Karmapa, we need to be very precise about His words, before add it here to our discussions.
So maybe investigste it again and then i am very curious about His words.
Then we can have a better understanding

But anyway can i feel in what direction His Wisdom is pointing.

Best wishes
KY
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby Sönam » Fri Jun 24, 2011 11:31 am

Adamantine wrote:
Sönam wrote:The best way to get rid of that tulku business is to considere that we are all tulkus ...

Sönam


well that would render the concept of tulku as bodhisattva consciously choosing their rebirth as completely null. the only thing we all are is reincarnated. to say we are all tulkus is like saying we are all Buddhas. We may all have Buddha-nature but we're not Buddhas until we've purified all stains...


some may have a different pov ...

Sönam
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Re: Who are the tulkus in the documentary "TULKU"

Postby kirtu » Fri Jun 24, 2011 1:15 pm

Namdrol wrote:Buddhas have perfect recall of their past lives. In fact, any highly realized bodhisattva on the stages will.

My point is that tulkus with no or hazy memories of past lives does not make for impressive tulkus.


So these tulku's may be on the lower bhumi's or even not on the bhumi's. Judging or prejudging tulku's based on where they might be on the bhumi's or on the basis of signs is a red hering. The fundamental motivation of a tulku is strong compassion. They still have to nurture and develop their qualities and blossom in order to accomplish activities for the benefit of beings and once they do that, that would be impressive.

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