Shambhala International believes they are above western laws, and they have programmed the membership to believe that facts don’t exist. I know this, because I was thought-controlled in this group for nearly twenty years and by the many Tibetan Lamas, connected to each other. They maintain a deep hold on the behaviors of their groups’ communities of western devotees.
The dharma brats of Shambhala were not only sexually groomed and sexually abused by their “enlighted elders,” they were bonded to each other and the Lamas at a very deep level, some of them since toddlers, making it very hard to extricate themselves from this influence. It requires taking a very determined individualistic stand. Separating oneself from all cult influences, including your many social connections, and ‘friends’ who are considered your extended family. Who were only your ‘friends’ when you were part of the groupthink and group speak of the cult; moving and behaving in lock-step adherence to the cult ideology, language, belief system and the rule of all cults: “see no evil, hear no evil and speak no evil.”
What this really means is: never perceive the evil-doing in your cult leaders and their inner circle but only their ‘perfection’ or face plunging to hell-realms for your future lives and banished in this one as a ‘heretic’ to the Tantric teachings.
That is what is literally taught in all these so-called ‘Buddhist’ groups of Tantra. In particular, one is taught to repress all rational thought and judgment about what one is seeing, until even one’s perceptions are doubted.
Rational thought is explicitly taught to be bad. Mindfulness, which originates from Trungpa’s Shambhala group, and was first spread, and still is, by his most cult-controlled early devotees and now their children of this cult, teaches one that ‘judgments,’ about ‘good or bad’ are an obstacle on their ‘enlightened path.’
So it shouldn’t have been a surprise when Shambhala International, now in great danger since their secrets are out, would work on the still connected, dharma brat whistle blowers in their groups, starting to break out of their massive mind-control.
Children in an authoritarian cult group have the hardest time to break free.
But it is not just the members of Shambhala that are using ‘divide and conquer’ techniques on their members, it is also their very large outer circle, such as their in-house propaganda newspeak magazines; their flag ship ‘Buddhist’ magazines, Tricycle, Lion’s Roar, and Buddhadharma, who have been supporting, promoting and enabling Shambhala International, and other Tibetan lamas and enablers in this overarching hierarchy of Lamaist control, for decades.
They are also using a ‘divide and conquer’ strategy, behind the scenes, against whistle blowers in Shambhala. Trying to get them to turn on each other. They want to keep the scandals of these Tibetan Lamaist groups, and the Tantric teachers they have promoted as icons of generic Buddhism, under the radar, their scandals ‘in house.’ One way they have been doing this is by mixing Tantra with traditional Buddhist streams, which has falsely influenced thousands of other Buddhist groups to believe that what Tantric lamas are teachings in their groups is just another Buddhist stream.
Those, who are actually trying to help victims and expose this dangerous cult Shambhala International and its recruiting college, Naropa University, by warning the public, and future potential recruits, have also been targets of this larger divide and conquer techniques, such as the anti-cult group, Families Against Cult Teachings, the FACT group who has been supporting victims of cults, and have been willing to take on Naropa and its abuses who are spreading their dangerous influences in our western countries.
That is why a outside investigation, away from these insidious influences, is essential if there is to be any effect in stopping Shambhala International, and the rest of these Tibetan Tantric Lamaist groups and their enablers from continuing ‘ life as usual.’ Because, as they have done for the last forty years, they are simply waiting, until this latest scandal ‘blows over.’ As it always does.
So these Tantric groups, of ‘no-good, no bad,’ can go back to their misogynistic and sexually abusive behaviors, built into their Tantric teachings since the days of eighth century Indian sorcerers and sadhus, and reinforced by the Mongolian Khans; continuing to spread this dangerous ‘non-duality’ view that is helping make the world crazy.
Some , like FACT, were willing to go back into that swamp of Shambhala to support victims who were starting to come out. But, in their organization, the group mind always trumps the truth, and no good deed goes unpunished in their “Enlightened World” of Trungpa: cocaine user, alcoholic, illegal harem-keeper of young women, serial sexual abuser and master of group think.
The Shambhala and Tibetan Lamaist machine , while victims of abuses of Shambhala, were trying to support each other, telling our stories, believing the victims, were busy at work. Conniving and plotting to drive a wedge. They could feel the momentum of unity in purpose growing, that had to be stopped. That’s how it works in a pathological group such as Shambhala International. Everything they do is about preventing their secrets from getting out, or if they do get out, making sure, if they can, that all cult members remain in their service, one way or another, even though banished to hellrealms; according to their dogmatic beliefs, if they tell the secrets. They can use them in the interim to create a wedge. The main thing is that Tibetan Lamaism is protected, and that none of these lamas are sent to jail. So they will flatter and pretend to be ‘friends’ that support the victims’ stories, while, like snakes in the grass, they are simply protecting their own agendas and careers in the continued spread of Tantra; and their advertising revenues from the most popular ‘Buddhism’ in the West.
That is exactly what all of Shambhala International is doing right now, with the help of the usual suspects: their inner circles and the larger Tibetan Lamaist hierarchy; their female enabling nuns and monks; their ‘contemplative’ mindfulness psychotherapists’; their flagship magazines of Shambhala : The Lion’s Roar, Buddhadharma, and Tricycle; the so-called ‘independent’ Buddhist magazine that has been pushing and promoting Shambhala; its leader Sakyong Mipham, (over 400 positive articles about this sexual abuser for the last twenty or so years),; its main teachers and female enablers, like Pema Chodron; (166 promotional articles) , and over 200 positive articles about Lama Sogyal, of Rigpa fame, another keeper of female harems.
This so-called ‘independent Buddhist magazine’ even recently sponsored a Tricycle Retreat, for its subscribers, led by no other than the Sakyong, Trungpa’s son, and Trungpa’s number one Stockholm victim and female enabler, Pema Chodron. So much for their ‘independent’ Buddhist review moniker.
Tricycle has actually been a propaganda magazine for Shambhala International and its Mindfulness commodity for now decades. Because it is Mindfulness : the first cult technique of this Tibetan Buddhist Lamaist cult, now merged with other Buddhist streams through Jon Kabat Zinn, Dalai Lama groupie and former Zen monk, and Theravada practitioners from the Wirathu monk’s ‘forest lineage,’ who has been inflaming Buddhists to commit genocide on Muslims in Myanmar.
Now, these three Shambhala propaganda magazines, who are promoting this Three-Stream Buddhism and its billion dollar mindfulness commodity, are trying to control the narrative. For, after all, where would they be if Shambhala International, and these other Tibetan Tantric Lamaist groups, with their many tentacles of influence, failed? Or the grants these magazines receive to continue to see that Tantra seen as ‘Buddhism’ dried up?
Not to mention all the careers of the current die-hard loyalists to their made-up Kingdom of Shambhala going in the tank; the teachers/ administrators at Naropa, who have published article after article, confusing other Buddhists from the Zen and Theravada streams, who have looked the other way regarding the sexual abuse of its founders and leaders , for decades. Even though many of Shambhala and Naropa administration and teachings staff have taken oaths as licensed psychologists, and psychotherapists, to report criminal abuse to legal authorities if they knew of harm being caused? Their oaths to their Tibetan gurus override any oaths as western psychologists and psychotherapists. Their vow “to keep my master’s secrets or may I shrink up and rot” they renew every time they do a Tantric practice together.
Tibetan ‘ Tantric Buddhism’ has also been not only the cult religion of this inner circle of Tibetan Tantra, but also their bread and butter for the last forty years. They aren’t going to let a little thing like rape, sexual grooming of children, and sexual abuse of young women and girls, get in the way of this. They would be financially bereft. Not to mention their mindfulness spread coming to a halt.
Besides, Shambhala International and their cult members don’t see these things as abuse. That would be falling into ‘conceptual thinking’; A much worse sin in their view then grooming little girls and boys to accept this abuse as ‘blessings.’
Shambhala will simply reinvent themselves as now the “secular spirituality’ of the New Religious Movement; the stalwart protectors against abuse’; the ‘diversity’ Buddhist group; the new faux-feminist group. Those concepts are perfectly fine in Shambhala. Pretend to be part of the #me-too movement. Pretense is what the inner circle of Shambhala has perfected over forty years.
It is horrible what successful cult groups, allowed to become mega-churches, with no transparency and tax-free status, can do, with their expensive public relations damage control machine, to cover up their egregious abuses. Apparently, Shambhala has hired the same group of public relations lawyers as the Harvey Weinstein defense did.
It will be a few older students who snap out and can leave their cult ‘friends’ behind, and those newer recruits, not yet into their group think, as well as a growing and critical mass of the public, now provided with a window into Shambhala’s secrets. A small window before the ‘usual enablers’ will cover it up.
This could be a critical mass that will begin to realize how dangerous Shambhala/ Naropa, and all these sexually abusive Lamaist groups are, who believe their “Vajrayana is above western law” as one of their celebrity Lamas, Dzongsar Rinpoche, recently declared: the ‘Vajrayana is above Western Law.”
Dzongsar just received a grant from the Chinese Billionaire-R. H. N. Ho, to promote Dzongsar’s abusive and anti-democratic, Anti-Western views with a large grant at the University of Michigan to confuse more young minds in America and nail more female energy down.
This is dangerous to free and democratic societies, if the Lamas and their inner circles are allowed to ‘continue as usual’ ; without legal consequences.
Tashi Armstrong, a devotee of the dead Trungpa and dead Regent, sums up the legacy belief system of the true-believers of Shambhala/Vajradhatu on his Facebook page, regarding how to view the Regent’s amoral behaviors, his promiscuity and sexual abuse of young men in this group, who struck his fancy, 100’s of them , while infected with AIDS :
We should be extremely careful about rushing to conventional moral judgments. How may of us would recognize Tilopa if we met him today? We are very obscured. This says nothing about the special vows that tantrikas take in this instance. To view this in a conventional way is obscene and unforgivable.
This is how they think. This is what they believe, in all these Tibetan Lamaist groups, behind all the rhetoric and nice talk about ‘survivors.”
No one survives this group and their thought-pathology unless they come all the way out.
If we can wake up as a society and stop letting dangerous cults, like these, be given tax-free status as a ‘religion’ and remain their own judge and jury when their abuses come to light, then Shambhala/Naropa will be a case study for the future in how pathological abusive cults and their inner circle’s ‘undue influence’ works.
Otherwise we are ignoring a growing and very dangerous shadow of destructive soft power, coming in on cat’s feet, that is slowly destroying our western civilization, its laws and its ethical foundation, as my first guru, Trungpa, always planned. He made no secret of that with us. That is what their so-called Enlightened Society is all about.
© Christine A. Chandler