Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Mariusz » Fri Mar 09, 2012 5:20 pm

gad rgyangs wrote:
Mariusz wrote:2. Concerning Dzogchen check the lineage. He want to teach about Rigpa. Why nothing here about his lineage of Dzogchen if he really has it? When someone wants the very high teachings like Dzogchen, should check carefully the lineage, ask other teachers of Dzogchen about the teacher you wanted to learn from, and so on.


I didn't notice anywhere where he is saying he is teaching about "rigpa", nor does he use the word "Dzogchen", both of which are Tibetan words. He is advocating that people take a fresh look at what actually is, without conceptual overlays as much as possible. How can this possibly be a bad thing?

But it brings us back to one of my original points: to me there is a big difference between saying "one can discover one's real nature using the Dzogchen system" and saying "one can discover one's real nature only by using the Dzogchen system". While I believe the first is true, to me the second is brain-dead. So if it boils down to people who believe #2 rejecting anything that does not fit their fundamentalist mindset, thats not only retarded, its not even Buddhist in the original sense. Maybe we really can say, after Nietzsche, "there was only one Buddhist, and he reached enlightenment under the bo tree because he put aside all second-hand conceptual structures and looked."

I did not write "rejecting" but "checking". Checking is always healthy and useful. Moreover, one should be not naive but practice Dzogchen with genuine teacher as soon as possible. I don't think you have comfort to not check the lineage and wait for such person as Garab Dorje these days.
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Dechen Norbu » Fri Mar 09, 2012 5:48 pm

What is also retarded and brain dead is mistaking assessments that only have a superficial resemblance with Dzogchen with the real thing. AFAIK the guy doesn't claim anything of the sort, so he has nothing to demonstrate by himself.
What I heard in his videos is the usual fluff that accompanies neo advaitans and similar thinkers. It's fluff. There's nothing to it. By doing that alone you'll go nowhere.

There are also the "fundamentalists of relativism", which isn't a good thing either.
Hypothetically there could be a non Buddhist system that is similar with Dzogchen in both methods and results. However I never seen it or heard about it. Perhaps you can enlighten us and share something we don't know?
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Dronma » Fri Mar 09, 2012 8:14 pm

Sönam wrote: :toilet: ... :zzz:


I stay with Sönam's statement! :toilet:
Very profound indeed.... :zzz:
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Dronma » Fri Mar 09, 2012 8:38 pm

Anders Honore wrote:
Dronma wrote:Much ado about nothing... :shrug:
What is exactly the point of this topic?
Everyone to accept Mr Massaro as a Dzogchen Master or as an enlightened youngster? :bow:
There are millions like Mr Massaro out there...... :juggling:


I hope so. Whether he is there 'in a dzogchen sense' or not, it would be awesome if there were millions like him who undertake the pursuit of spiritual happiness to such a degree.


Only the term "spiritual happiness" can make me run away!!!!! :woohoo:
Who is talking about "spiritual happiness" in Dzogchen???
Anders Honore, since you look honest enough, I shall reply seriously for one and only time in this topic:
What I see in Mr Massaro is an incubated Rudra.
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Jax » Fri Mar 09, 2012 9:03 pm

Interesting discussion... but I sense a kind of "cult mentality" at play. Many here actually believe the Dzogchen tantras have some primordial origin and history. I think scholarly research will indicate that Dzogchen has a rather short history, probably no older than the late 800's at earliest. It is probable that the Dzogchen teachings were created by some Tibetan lamas or practitioners that took the Mahayoga teachings which result in the state of Dzogchen as in the Guyagharba Tantra tradition. There seems to be no earlier instance of there being a separate vehicle called Dzogchen. Dzogchen was the culmination of the gradual path of generation and completion stage yogas. There exists no Indian or sanskrit texts regarding Dzogchen, none, unlike Mahamudra. I suspect that some Mahayoga practitioners, like Padmasambhava and his group or others created the notion of Dzogchen as being a separate vehicle, much as Saraha and Maitripa did regarding Essence Mahamudra. In other words, some Tibetan practitioners got together and wrote all the Dzogchen Tantras and gave them a false history to provide legitimacy. It is not to say the Tantras are not profound as many are, but later termas are probably just as spurious regarding origins. I do feel the Tantras of Dzogchen do represent the profound state of Mahamudra being present in its authors, but they called their new tradition "Dzogchen". These creators of Dzogchen were probably Vimalamitra and Vairochana. They combined many Central Asian traditions, Chan and Taoist practices, as well as Kashmiri Shaivist yogas. Togal practices can be traced to very ancient "Light Practices" also from Central Asian shamanism that spread as well into Iranian Sufism and Kashmiri Shaivism as shared in the Vijnana Bhairava Tantra. At that time there was a huge melting pot of religious and mystical teachings from the Middle East as well. Much of Padmasambhava's teachings have been heavily influenced by Christian and other Middle Eastern mythologies that Guenther has documented in his Teachings of Padmasambhava. In other words, Dzogchen was made up by some well meaning practitioners, all probably Tibetan from Mahayoga and other Tantric teachings, both Buddhist and Shaivist. Sam Van Schaik and David Germano and others have done some pretty thorough research in this area and have similar conclusions regarding Dzogchen coming from the Mahayoga tantras. Anyway, the point being, Gnosis has no historical basis. It is the ever present changeless Knowing within all experience. Whatever "points that out" to consciousness is that path. So don't get so hung up on imaginary histories and mythologies dependent upon the wishful and imaginary predilections of individuals subject to "cult-like" beliefs and exclusivity regarding the superiority of those beliefs. It becomes a self-reinforcing delusion. The truth is everywhere present, not in a system, lineage or teaching. It is our present Awareness that is fully healthy and untouched by samsaric conditioning from the beginning. Notice how your present Awareness is always changelessly aware, rest as that. The rest will unfold organically, siddhis and all...
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby padma norbu » Fri Mar 09, 2012 9:31 pm

asunthatneversets wrote:
padma norbu wrote: At $70 per person per day, he's probably not really raking in the bucks, so I'm willing to believe it's a labor of love and he's really trying to help people... but, lol @ the idea he's figured it all out and we should be looking to him for advice. If he levitates and radiates colored lights, that's a different story....


padma norbu wrote: Like I said, if he can levitate or display something else utterly miraculous, that's a different story. All I see is a kid who thinks he's got it all figured out. Relative to your average jackass, he's ahead of the game, but so what?


Are there any living masters who have supposedly attained siddhis like that? I'm just curious for off topic's sake... I haven't heard of any but I'm generally out of the loop. And also not to throw a wrench in the works but levitation and siddhis of that sort wouldn't necessarily mean one was fully realized in a dzogchen sense or anything. Powers may just be a sign that one has done certain practices very thoroughly. That being said they would certainly be quite a remarkable case!


Yes, I've never seen it personally, but many people have attested to miraculous first-hand accounts whom I trust because they have a solid reputation and traceable lineage/education with nothing to be suspicious about. Lama Pema Wangdak once said at a teaching I attended that people really can fly around and stuff, but that it doesn't change anything. You go to Tibet, see some people flying around, come back and try to tell anyone and they don't believe it. Even in Tibet, he said it doesn't actually accomplish much at all. He followed up by telling the story of a Tibetan family feud where one of the members of one family attained various siddhis and was flying around one day while a member of the rival family was working in the field with his son. The boy said, "Look, daddy!" and pointed up to the man flying. The first thing the father did was look on the ground for the flying man's shadow, which he then spit at and told his son not to let the man's shadow hit him. I'm pretty sure this story is just a tale and I don't think Pema tried to tell it in a way that conveyed it was not just a story of unknown origin, like a legend or whatever, but he was just using it to illustrate the point he was making factually that such siddhis really are possible and people have seen them, in fact they are quite common in Tibet, but it doesn't really change much so we shouldn't dwell on such miraculous things.

Now, you could ask me "Well, then why are you dwelling on such miraculous things?" And my answer is that this guy doesn't fit the same criteria as far as why I trust Lama Pema, for example: "a solid reputation and traceable lineage/education with nothing to be suspicious about." I'm willing to give him the benefit of the doubt as far as being genuine, but there's nothing I saw that struck me as particularly mind-blowing or unsuspicious.
"Use what seems like poison as medicine. We can use our personal suffering as the path to compassion for all beings." Pema Chodron
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Anders » Fri Mar 09, 2012 9:35 pm

Dronma wrote:
Anders Honore wrote:
Dronma wrote:Much ado about nothing... :shrug:
What is exactly the point of this topic?
Everyone to accept Mr Massaro as a Dzogchen Master or as an enlightened youngster? :bow:
There are millions like Mr Massaro out there...... :juggling:


I hope so. Whether he is there 'in a dzogchen sense' or not, it would be awesome if there were millions like him who undertake the pursuit of spiritual happiness to such a degree.


Only the term "spiritual happiness" can make me run away!!!!! :woohoo:
Who is talking about "spiritual happiness" in Dzogchen???
Anders Honore, since you look honest enough, I shall reply seriously for one and only time in this topic:
What I see in Mr Massaro is an incubated Rudra.


This is what I meant earlier. Why so bound up in terminology? Some Buddhist seem so invested in distinguishing themselves and Buddhism from all other paths in any and all ways, even where there are points of commonality.

Buddhism is a spiritual path, dedicated to happiness and welfare, so spiritual happiness should be a natural concept to use in such a context.

It may not have been used in Tibet or India (they did not speak English after all), but though I would like to learn all I can from Asian Buddhism I have little desire to imitate it. I am a westerner and I am quite comfortable using western language and thought paradigms to express myself. I don't mind saying 'wisdom' instead of 'prajna' either. Give it a try - drop the affectations for a bit and try addressing a dharma brother as 'spiritual friend' instead of 'Kalyanamitra' (though tbf it is a quite lovely word) or 'Geshe' next time. There's more to Buddhism than the secret handshakes and membership cards.
"Even if my body should be burnt to death in the fires of hell
I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"

--- Gandavyuha Sutra
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby padma norbu » Fri Mar 09, 2012 9:42 pm

Namdrol wrote:
padma norbu wrote:I see at least 50 people in the retreat photo on his website. At $70 per person per day



$3500 ($70 x 50 people) per day is a pretty good racket. A labor of love indeed.


But, he's got to rent the space, pay for travel, take out a third for taxes and then teach the whole day, maintain the website (from which he gives free content)... plus it's not an everyday job, so he's got to make that money stretch til the next event. Good for a job on the side, though.

But, I mean, there are a ton of DC courses I never take because it's $60 per day. About the same price, really.
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Josef » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:07 pm

The only thing I can really see Bentinho being "there" on is that he just shows how easy it is to rip people off, especially people who are seeking some kind of spiritual experience but are afraid of organization.
There is a very large group of willing victims for people like this guy and unfortunately there are a lot of guys like him out there to take their money and time.

He is basically a less experienced Tolle.
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Dronma » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:09 pm

Anders Honore wrote:
Dronma wrote:Only the term "spiritual happiness" can make me run away!!!!! :woohoo:
Who is talking about "spiritual happiness" in Dzogchen???
Anders Honore, since you look honest enough, I shall reply seriously for one and only time in this topic:
What I see in Mr Massaro is an incubated Rudra.


This is what I meant earlier. Why so bound up in terminology? Some Buddhist seem so invested in distinguishing themselves and Buddhism from all other paths in any and all ways, even where there are points of commonality.

Buddhism is a spiritual path, dedicated to happiness and welfare, so spiritual happiness should be a natural concept to use in such a context.

It may not have been used in Tibet or India (they did not speak English after all), but though I would like to learn all I can from Asian Buddhism I have little desire to imitate it. I am a westerner and I am quite comfortable using western language and thought paradigms to express myself. I don't mind saying 'wisdom' instead of 'prajna' either. Give it a try - drop the affectations for a bit and try addressing a dharma brother as 'spiritual friend' instead of 'Kalyanamitra' (though tbf it is a quite lovely word) or 'Geshe' next time. There's more to Buddhism than the secret handshakes and membership cards.



It is obvious that we come from different planets, so communication is impossible because we do not have the same background. :alien:
You are free to believe what you like.
I do not care..... :shrug:
The subject here is not "you", "Buddhism", "Dzogchen" or your criticism upon others.
Somebody put the question: "Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?".
And some people replied.
Conclusion: Bentinho Massaro has nothing to do with Dzogchen.
That' s all !!! :meditate:
"My view is as vast as the sky, but my actions are finer than flour"
~ Padmasambhava ~
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Anders » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:17 pm

Pema Rigdzin wrote:
Anders Honore wrote:
One gets the impression that if a Bodhisattva should emanate here in this saha world, be realised and start teaching, he would never be recognised as one by Buddhists unless he did so under a Buddhist banner using Buddhist terminology.



This is true, and I was even thinking this earlier myself... but... As jaded as we are by cult leaders and profiteering self-help gurus teaching total BS, it can be hard enough sometimes for people to even come to trust and develop faith in Buddhist teachers. At least once people have gained trust in the Buddha's teachings and in this or that Buddhist teacher, they can generally have some trust in the other teachers their own teacher vouches for, or teachers who are apparently teaching what they've already come to recognize as valid Buddha Dharma.


Oh definitely. The lineages of both Sangha and realised teachers constitute an invaluable system of peer review to my mind. Many systemless seekers or neo-vedantins love to say things like "the Buddha wasn't a Buddhist", which is of course not quite true. He was the founder of the oldest religious order in the world, defined rituals of going for refuge and ordination and took special care to distinguish his order and teachings as a self-contained system (religiously, I mean. Socially, the sangha is very much dependent on the support of the lay society). And I don't think it is coincidence that the sangha and teaching has proven to be so enduring. What Shakyamuni laid down as a social and ethical framework around his teachings was something that's proven to be really timeless and capable of transplating to numerous cultures. There is definitely something to be said for the framework of the tradition.

There are some trade-offs involved, I suppose, but overall it's a pretty good deal to my mind.
Last edited by Anders on Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"

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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Jax » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:18 pm

Nangwa, your arrogance is amazing! I have shared many emails with Bentinho and my son visited him in California. He's a little Garab Dorje, finding his roots and stability. He got it in a flash. Now he is working through eliminating all doubts as they arise. He praises all others and especially Dzogchen. He's got a great heart and a clear mind. He does want to make his offering available to as many as possible, yet anyone can always participate in all his meetings for free. His marketing is NO different than all the Lamas on the retreat circuit, except he doesn't have a membership club with membership cards and required monthly membership fees, like one of the most famous Lama does. So cut the kid some slack... read his text on his website. He's 23. What were you doing when you were 23? ;-)
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Anders » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:18 pm

Dronma wrote:
Anders Honore wrote:
Dronma wrote:Only the term "spiritual happiness" can make me run away!!!!! :woohoo:
Who is talking about "spiritual happiness" in Dzogchen???
Anders Honore, since you look honest enough, I shall reply seriously for one and only time in this topic:
What I see in Mr Massaro is an incubated Rudra.


This is what I meant earlier. Why so bound up in terminology? Some Buddhist seem so invested in distinguishing themselves and Buddhism from all other paths in any and all ways, even where there are points of commonality.

Buddhism is a spiritual path, dedicated to happiness and welfare, so spiritual happiness should be a natural concept to use in such a context.

It may not have been used in Tibet or India (they did not speak English after all), but though I would like to learn all I can from Asian Buddhism I have little desire to imitate it. I am a westerner and I am quite comfortable using western language and thought paradigms to express myself. I don't mind saying 'wisdom' instead of 'prajna' either. Give it a try - drop the affectations for a bit and try addressing a dharma brother as 'spiritual friend' instead of 'Kalyanamitra' (though tbf it is a quite lovely word) or 'Geshe' next time. There's more to Buddhism than the secret handshakes and membership cards.



It is obvious that we come from different planets, so communication is impossible because we do not have the same background. :alien:
You are free to believe what you like.
I do not care..... :shrug:
The subject here is not "you", "Buddhism", "Dzogchen" or your criticism upon others.
Somebody put the question: "Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?".
And some people replied.
Conclusion: Bentinho Massaro has nothing to do with Dzogchen.
That' s all !!! :meditate:


erm, ok? Best of luck to ya then.
"Even if my body should be burnt to death in the fires of hell
I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"

--- Gandavyuha Sutra
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Anders » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:23 pm

Nangwa wrote:The only thing I can really see Bentinho being "there" on is that he just shows how easy it is to rip people off, especially people who are seeking some kind of spiritual experience but are afraid of organization.
There is a very large group of willing victims for people like this guy and unfortunately there are a lot of guys like him out there to take their money and time.

He is basically a less experienced Tolle.


Maybe he means well? Is it really necessary to cast aspersions like this?

"The lady doth protest too much, methinks."
"Even if my body should be burnt to death in the fires of hell
I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"

--- Gandavyuha Sutra
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Dechen Norbu » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:27 pm

Jax wrote:Nangwa, your arrogance is amazing! I have shared many emails with Bentinho and my son visited him in California. He's a little Garab Dorje, finding his roots and stability. He got it in a flash. Now he is working through eliminating all doubts as they arise. He praises all others and especially Dzogchen. He's got a great heart and a clear mind. He does want to make his offering available to as many as possible, yet anyone can always participate in all his meetings for free. His marketing is NO different than all the Lamas on the retreat circuit, except he doesn't have a membership club with membership cards and required monthly membership fees, like one of the most famous Lama does. So cut the kid some slack... read his text on his website. He's 23. What were you doing when you were 23? ;-)

Unfortunately, this guy is teaching instead of learning. If he has the great heart and clear mind you say he does, it's a pity he isn't learning under a good teacher and wastes his time teaching new agish fluff.
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Dechen Norbu » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:30 pm

Anders Honore wrote:
Nangwa wrote:The only thing I can really see Bentinho being "there" on is that he just shows how easy it is to rip people off, especially people who are seeking some kind of spiritual experience but are afraid of organization.
There is a very large group of willing victims for people like this guy and unfortunately there are a lot of guys like him out there to take their money and time.

He is basically a less experienced Tolle.


Maybe he means well? Is it really necessary to cast aspersions like this?

"The lady doth protest too much, methinks."

Good intentions aren't the justification for everything, but I don't have to tell you that Anders.
A perfectly good intention can be spoiled by a big ego. People who should be humble enough to be students try to pass as teachers. This is a shame for them and those who bite their game. We never know how these things end, especially when these fellows start believing what their followers say of them.
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Josef » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:33 pm

Anders Honore wrote:
Nangwa wrote:The only thing I can really see Bentinho being "there" on is that he just shows how easy it is to rip people off, especially people who are seeking some kind of spiritual experience but are afraid of organization.
There is a very large group of willing victims for people like this guy and unfortunately there are a lot of guys like him out there to take their money and time.

He is basically a less experienced Tolle.


Maybe he means well? Is it really necessary to cast aspersions like this?

"The lady doth protest too much, methinks."


If this guy doesnt trigger peoples charlatan radar then yes, it is necessary.
It's pretty obvious what his schtick is really, he saw how rich and famous Tolle got and he is modeling his business to reflect that.
I find it a bit disturbing that people in this thread are falling for it to be honest.

If he really means well and thinks he is what he is claiming to be, then he needs to seek a good therapist and give him some of the free money he is taking from the poor saps who attend his retreats.
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Anders » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:36 pm

Dechen Norbu wrote:Unfortunately, this guy is teaching instead of learning. If he has the great heart and clear mind you say he does, it's a pity he isn't learning under a good teacher and wastes his time teaching new agish fluff.


Definitely. Even if he were a capable realised teacher now (again, I have no clue and don't really care that much how realised he is), I think he would benefit a lot from training with a more realised teacher. The Wisdom of perfection of action is the most subtle and difficult of the four jnanas to manifest. Not Dzogchen, but even someone like Huineng who got it all in one go (well, two..) waited six years after receiving the seal of transmission before he started teaching others.
"Even if my body should be burnt to death in the fires of hell
I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"

--- Gandavyuha Sutra
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Dechen Norbu » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:38 pm

:thumbsup:
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Re: Bentinho Massaro - Is he there in a dzogchen sense?

Postby Anders » Fri Mar 09, 2012 10:45 pm

Dechen Norbu wrote:
Anders Honore wrote:
Nangwa wrote:The only thing I can really see Bentinho being "there" on is that he just shows how easy it is to rip people off, especially people who are seeking some kind of spiritual experience but are afraid of organization.
There is a very large group of willing victims for people like this guy and unfortunately there are a lot of guys like him out there to take their money and time.

He is basically a less experienced Tolle.


Maybe he means well? Is it really necessary to cast aspersions like this?

"The lady doth protest too much, methinks."

Good intentions aren't the justification for everything, but I don't have to tell you that Anders.
A perfectly good intention can be spoiled by a big ego. People who should be humble enough to be students try to pass as teachers. This is a shame for them and those who bite their game. We never know how these things end, especially when these fellows start believing what their followers say of them.


Of course. But I am not so much pointing Massaro's direction as I am Dharmawheel's with that comment. Seems to me that, irrespective of whether he is a well-meaning deluded soul, a devious charlatan or a realised bodhisattva, there is a fair bit of casual nastiness, in the sense of happily attributing callous greed to this guy just because someone else entirely proposed the heterodox notion that he might be 'there in a dzogchen sense' (let's face it, no one would have mustered the interest to slander him like this if not for that). I would like to think as Buddhists we can do better.
"Even if my body should be burnt to death in the fires of hell
I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"

--- Gandavyuha Sutra
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