Author Topic: Kalu Rinpoches talks about his life!!!  (Read 4229 times)

Offline Mini-Senge

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Re: Kalu Rinpoches talks about his life!!!
« Reply #15 on: December 27, 2011, 08:29:33 am »
I doubt he needs any kind of meditation lesson.  He seems fine to me and to be on the cusp of profound realization, if not already there but hiding it.   He has spent 3+ years in retreat, which is certainly more than I have done or probably ever will do. 

I think we should also be careful what we say and think here.  The important aspect for Kagyu is the 'sacred view'.  It might be worth investigating some of the projections imposed upon this situation that have negative implications, because the video does not seem to have those negative implications for me.

I also think the tulku system is fine.  I think it is all fine.  The idea the we can "change" something for the better is an illusion.  If there is something we are running away from then we need to look at what it is we are running from and to where we are running.  This is a beautiful thing, even and especially in this situation.  We must see the world from the vajra view if we are to transmute the conventions of value laden opinions, conventions, thoughts, karmic tendencies, etc... 

My lama, Lama Dudjom Dorjee, is a recognized tulku.  He does not use the title 'tulku' and I bet less than half of his immediate sangha knows he has been recognized as such.  He was given a seat, by 16th karmapa, at the same level as the 4 regents.  But, nonetheless, while in retreat he prostrated in front of Khenpo Tsultrim Gyamtso, not a tulku.  Lama Dorjee said that actually there were 4 or 5 tulkus prostrating to him, a "non-tulku". 



The point for me is:  SACRED VIEW.  This "situation" is only what we make it out to be.  If we say good, then it is good.  If we say bad, then it is bad.  But, these are two sides of a coin.  The Vajra view doesn't want anything to do with that coin.  The coin is in eternal flip, and the moment we say "good" or "bad" we have attached to something and in turn valued it and in turn ingrained that kind of conventional valuation in our mindstream thereby planting karmic seeds of "imposed valuation" in our mind stream that can only ripen in samsara, because samsara is value laden while nirvana is not.  (not a contradiction because of how the negation is used)

It is neither good,
Nor is it bad
Nor is it both good and bad
Nor is it neither good nor bad.
 :smack:


 :twocents:
« Last Edit: December 27, 2011, 08:47:44 am by Mini-Senge »

Offline santamonicacj

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Re: Kalu Rinpoches talks about his life!!!
« Reply #16 on: December 27, 2011, 09:41:40 am »
I doubt he needs any kind of meditation lesson.  He seems fine to me and to be on the cusp of profound realization, if not already there but hiding it.   He has spent 3+ years in retreat, which is certainly more than I have done or probably ever will do.
The 3 year retreat is like having a B.A. in meditation. In the Kagyu tradition you learn all the major practices that constitute the tradition. After that you are qualified to continue your practice on your own.
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I think we should also be careful what we say and think here.
True.
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The important aspect for Kagyu is the 'sacred view'.
In this context sacred view and guru yoga are reserved for teachers that you have accepted as you teacher, traditionally defined as having taken initiation from them. There is no requirement that one accepts as a teacher anybody, regardless of their title, position in the lineage, or recognition from a past lifetime.

However obviously it is good to have a favorable opinion of all the lamas of one's tradition, and of other traditions for that matter as well.
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It might be worth investigating some of the projections imposed upon this situation that have negative implications, because the video does not seem to have those negative implications for me.
There are many students that are completely delighted by the new Kalu R.'s candor and accessibility as a person. However this is quite different than the last Kalu R.'s style. Many people that knew the last Kalu R. are having to make an adjustment.
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My lama, Lama Dudjom Dorjee, is a recognized tulku.  He does not use the title 'tulku' and I bet less than half of his immediate sangha knows he has been recognized as such.  He was given a seat, by 16th karmapa, at the same level as the 4 regents.  But, nonetheless, while in retreat he prostrated in front of Khenpo Tsultrim Gyamtso, not a tulku.  Lama Dorjee said that actually there were 4 or 5 tulkus prostrating to him, a "non-tulku".
As I said in a previous post (#15), people with Dharma realization should be honored regardless of their status.

In Geasr Mukpo's autobiographical documentary "Tulku" (available on Amazon), he says at the very beginning that he could not imagine a worse way of describing himself than as an enlightened Buddhist master. If you watch the entire thing I think you will be convinced he isn't just being humble, he's being honest. Big kudos for that. But then again he did not follow through on his training. Should he do so things might change.
Quote
The point for me is:  SACRED VIEW.  This "situation" is only what we make it out to be.  If we say good then it is good.  If we say bad, then it is bad.  But, these are two sides of a coin.  The Vajra view doesn't want anything to do with that coin.  The coin is in eternal flip, and the moment we say "good" or "bad" we have attached to something and in turn valued it and in turn ingrained that kind of conventional valuation in our mindstream thereby planting karmic seeds of "imposed valuation" in our mind stream that can only ripen in samsara, because samsara is value laden while nirvana is not.  (not a contradiction because of how the negation is used)
All true. However this does not negate our responsibility to ascertain for ourselves the appropriateness of a given teacher to our own practice. Not every lama in a given tradition will be right for every individual. However I am NOT saying that if a lama is not right for someone that it is then appropriate to publicly criticize them.

I am not criticizing Kalu R. at all. My own attitude is one of patient reservation. This is entirely appropriate since he himself has asked for it. He has publicly said on many occasions, "I'm just 21. Please don't expect too much from me." Very well, I will take him at his word. :namaste:

He wants to be able to be a young man and live his life. He is not a monk and is discovering relationships and the world at large. We should let him do his thing without expectations. If anything his accomplishments in his previous incarnation have earned him that right.
« Last Edit: December 27, 2011, 10:16:27 am by santamonicacj »
Warning: I'm enough of a fundamentalist Tibet style Buddhist to believe that for the last 1,000 years Tibet has produced a handful of enlightened masters in every generation. I do not ask that YOU believe it, but it will greatly simplify conversations if you understand that about me. Thanks.

Offline Mini-Senge

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Re: Kalu Rinpoches talks about his life!!!
« Reply #17 on: December 27, 2011, 10:38:27 am »
Agreed!  I am 25 years old.  I have many of the feelings he has, and from a similar age bracket.  His message, style and candor resound very strongly with me.  I really like to think about how masters like Tilo, Naro, Marpa, Mila lived and that resounds with me as well.  The Kalu Rinpoche now strikes me as more like them than a monk, perhaps.  I guess I do not know how to express myself here....  um.... kind of like crazy wisdom.  He knows what he's gotta do and how he's gotta do it.  People may think he might be naive, or young, maybe crazy, but I sense a very deep wisdom, love and compassion (much more than I could ever hope to imagine in this life) through his words and voice.  I felt it the moment I opened the video, heard his voice and saw his face.  We need to give him his fair due.  He is a true master, regardless of previous incarnation.  I mean, think of how close to the edge of crazy crazy he was pushed and he came out victorious.  He had to wash some kind of karma away before he could be where he is now.  I think that is testament to his power as a master, because it takes crazy-wisdom to destroy crazy-crazy.  And crazy-wisdom is hardcore indestructible lightning BOOM OM MANI PADME BOOM!!!!! :lmfao: :pray: :grouphug:


....also, does not the 3 year retreat occur after the education in meditation (hahah, if there is such a thing)?,  but I think more importantly, isnt it the icing on an entire Buddhist education, which is perhaps to the equivalent of a PhD?  That is, in the 3 year retreat there is more practice than instruction....?     If so, which I know is what my Lama went through, then that is hardcore.  Can you imagine what the world would be like if everyone had to spend 3 years delving into the depths of their profession/lifestyle after their formal education?  Thatd be kinda cool.... hmmmmm  :teehee:
« Last Edit: December 27, 2011, 10:49:19 am by Mini-Senge, Reason: more awesomeness »

Offline Gesar

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Re: Kalu Rinpoches talks about his life!!!
« Reply #18 on: December 27, 2011, 11:53:51 am »
  I think it is all fine.  The idea the we can "change" something for the better is an illusion.
You can't be serious.  Children being routinely molested and raped is far from fine.  I think addressing this problem, along with the problem of lamas taking sexual advantage of  their Western students, as he has mentioned on his website, will be one of his greatest contributions to his tradition and the world.  Let's not forget there's unbearable suffering resulting from these abusive situations.  The religion is about bringing an end to suffering.  So he's very much on the right track there.

Offline Mini-Senge

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Re: Kalu Rinpoches talks about his life!!!
« Reply #19 on: December 27, 2011, 12:30:30 pm »
You might be missing my point and I think his point as well.  We agree that those things you say are not "good", that teaching is certainly in what he is saying, but that is not all that is there.  What I think he means though is that we cannot put any value on it whatsoever.  If we do then we have already lost the battle.  We have to start our practice with those nearest to us. 

Chenrezig broke into 1000 pieces after trying to save every single being in the lower three realms after taking a break and seeing that there were just others who took their place in samsara. 

This is the wisdom of the third turning.  Justice is a child at play.  He builds sand castles, knocks them down.  Plays with his toys and destroys them.  The idea that "I" can make something better is an illusion and spiritually materialistic.  The only thing I can do is change my own perspective and try to be loving and compassionate to those I meet daily.  If one has the power to start a school then that is wonderful, fantastic, auspicious, etc...  But, we must bring an end to our own suffering and to those around us, because the person nearest is the person who matters the most, always.  This is the person to do tonglen with etc...

This is a very misunderstood point I think.  The law of karma has no value.  Justice cannot be measured against a human conception of the "good" or the "righteous" or the "virtuous". 

This is the reason why Kalu Rinpoche, evidenced from what he said in his video, is such a powerful master.  He has the wherewithall to understand the above point(s).    I could easily be misunderstanding though, but this is how I practice and seems to be how many of the Buddhist mahasiddhas practiced.  It is a subtle shift in view, but an important one to understand the teachings in full, I think.

We only have a good because we have a bad
on off
black white
samsara nirvana
north south
hot cold

We have to get out of this dualistic mindset, I believe to understand the teachings that are presented to Kalu Rinpoche.  He understands this.  Ends=Means.  Path=Goal.  He was given that teaching (life lessons, karma) because it ripened his wisdom and compassion in the fastest way possible.  That is why vajra view is vajra view.  It is indestructible and the wisdom of that burns up karma the fastest.  I could be way off base on the teachings, but that's what I think I hear.
« Last Edit: December 27, 2011, 12:57:04 pm by Mini-Senge »

Offline Gesar

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Re: Kalu Rinpoches talks about his life!!!
« Reply #20 on: December 27, 2011, 02:08:36 pm »


Chenrezig broke into 1000 pieces after trying to save every single being in the lower three realms after taking a break and seeing that there were just others who took their place in samsara. 
I hadn't heard this, thanks for this.  I can totally relate, lol !  Could you give me a reference to look this up?

btw, I never said anything about good or bad.  I focus on the suffering and its alleviation.  I think we have to be careful, so that focussing on our own practice doesn't lead to a sort of complacency to the suffering around us. But that may be a topic for a separate thread, and it's very much an individual decision, how to balance inner work with activist compassion.

Offline francis

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Re: Kalu Rinpoches talks about his life!!!
« Reply #21 on: December 27, 2011, 02:17:08 pm »
Hi there Mini-Senge,

I think most would agree you need to earn your position, rather than have it thrust upon you.  The tulku system seems to be bending under some strain at the moment, as publicised in Gesar Mukpo’s film  "Tulku".

I think you could take off those rose coloured glasses for a bit, and listen to what people are saying.  Kalu Rinpoche is certainly attracting criticism from within his sangha.  It looks like being a lively debate. 

Kalu Rinpoche Returns to Kagyu Droden Kunchab: An interview with Lama Lodu Rinpoche by Lama Choying

Kalu Rinpoche visits KDK: Q and A with Lama Lodu Rinpoche

Q: What do you think of Kalu Rinpoche's teachings to Westerners here in the United States?

A: It is beyond my limited knowledge to say. It was certainly clear that everyone was happy to see Rinpoche. At the same time, people left with questions. Though Rinpoche’s teachings offered immediate help to some, others appeared not to respond. I don’t believe this will greatly harm or benefit them. Rinpoche is a Tulku, and a Tulku may use special methods to plant the seed to liberation. We do not know. …







"Enlightenment, for a wave in the ocean, is the moment the wave realises it is water." - Thich Nhat Hanh

Offline Mini-Senge

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Re: Kalu Rinpoches talks about his life!!!
« Reply #22 on: December 27, 2011, 02:23:25 pm »
I understand your concern.

Um, you can find the reference in most Nyungne commentaries (thus thousand armed chenrezig) and if you receive a Chenrezig empowerment its usually one of the stories the empowering lama might tell.

Both of these are fantastic Nyungne commentaries.  The story is in the first link I believe.

http://www.amazon.com/Buddhist-Fasting-Practice-Thousand-Chenrezig/dp/1559393173/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1325020681&sr=8-1

http://www.amazon.com/Rest-Fortunate-Extraordinary-Practice-Nyungne/dp/0971455430/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1325020681&sr=8-2


Hey Francis,  Im not trying to say "how it is" but am expressing my feelings on it and from what has been open in my experience.  I am just trying to turn something like what is happening into a something sacred, because that is what it is always going to come down to.  :)  I don't know what you mean by rose colored, but everyone's is to some degree I think.  Maybe a few not, whatever that means.    But, it comes down to holding the scepter of lightning for me.  In the ever-flash of a bolt of lightning what do you want to be seeing and experiencing?  How do you want to be relating to the world in that moment?

 "Rinpoche is a Tulku, and a Tulku may use special methods to plant the seed to liberation. We do not know."  I choose to take the "positive" view on this.  Thats all.
« Last Edit: December 27, 2011, 02:36:13 pm by Mini-Senge »

Offline santamonicacj

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Re: Kalu Rinpoches talks about his life!!!
« Reply #23 on: December 27, 2011, 05:24:14 pm »
Quote
His message, style and candor resound very strongly with me.
Sorry. Didn't know you felt like that.

When I was your age (30+ years ago) I was at my first retreat. I was helping in the kitchen and there was a B&W poster of the previous Kalu R. It was a profile shot of him sitting with a vase of flower in front of an open window with a body of water behind him. When I saw it I was riveted. I couldn't move. I kept trying to get back to work in the kitchen, but my body just wouldn't go. Finally the guy that owned the poster saw what was going on and came over. He offered to give it to me, and I accepted. I still have it on my wall above my desk.

Some years later I was formally accepted as a student of Rinpoche. Seems there was some karma at work there.

So much of my response to the new Rinpoche is based on the fact that he carries the Kalu R. name, and my natural tendency to compare him to the old Kalu. Were he to be called by another name my reactions would be completely different.

However you knee-jerk reaction to the video reminds me much of my reaction to the poster so many years ago. I can relate.

Good luck with it.

smcj
« Last Edit: December 27, 2011, 05:47:14 pm by santamonicacj »
Warning: I'm enough of a fundamentalist Tibet style Buddhist to believe that for the last 1,000 years Tibet has produced a handful of enlightened masters in every generation. I do not ask that YOU believe it, but it will greatly simplify conversations if you understand that about me. Thanks.

Offline Mini-Senge

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Re: Kalu Rinpoches talks about his life!!!
« Reply #24 on: December 27, 2011, 05:49:48 pm »
I feel those with expectations would have found exactly the opposite of what the wanted!  Wouldn't that be the best lesson to a practitioner idealizing his teacher?  Does that means he is still teaching you through your aversion from him.... ?
« Last Edit: December 27, 2011, 05:52:14 pm by Mini-Senge »

Offline Mini-Senge

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Re: Kalu Rinpoches talks about his life!!!
« Reply #25 on: December 27, 2011, 05:56:08 pm »
Chenrezig broke into 1000 pieces after trying to save every single being in the lower three realms after taking a break and seeing that there were just others who took their place in samsara. 
I hadn't heard this, thanks for this.  I can totally relate, lol !  Could you give me a reference to look this up?

Found this on interwebz somewhere


"From an absolute point of view, Chenrezig is without origin; he exists primordially. However, from the relative point of view, there is a beginning of his manifestation in the realm of phenomena ...
Amitabha, the Buddha of Infinite Light who reigns in the Land of Bliss (Dewachen), one day conceived that in order to help beings a deity in the form of a young man should be manifested. His right eye then emitted a beam of white light that took the form of Chenrezig. He saw the necessity of having a deity in the form of a young woman and a beam of green light spread from his left eye giving birth to Tara ....
When Chenrezig ... looked at beings with compassion, he saw that they were covered with many karmic veils formed by the influence of desire, aversion, blindness, jealousy, and pride. Thus their sufferings were immeasurable. He saw all of that and a tear dropped from each of his eyes. Tara appeared from the tear that dropped from his right eye and the goddess Lhamo Trulnyerchen appeared from the tear that fell from his left eye. The two deities turned toward him and said, "Do not be scared. We will help you with your mission to benefit beings." Then suddenly they melted again into his eyes.
When he was in the presence of Amitabha, Chenrezig thought, "As long as there is even one being who has not attained awakening, I will strive for the benefit of all. And if I break this promise, may my head and body split into a thousand pieces!"
Amitabha understood his thought and told him, "This promise is excellent. Myself and all the buddhas of the three times, having taken such commitments, attained awakening for the benefit of all. I will help you to accomplish that which you have promised." Chenrezig's body then emitted six beams of light that produced emanations whose destiny was to act for the benefit of all in each of the six realms of being: humans, gods, demigods, animals, hungry ghosts, and hell beings.
He thus worked for many kalpas [eons]. Then one day, he looked with the eye of knowledge from the top of mount Meru [the center of the Universe] to see if he had liberated many beings and if the number of beings in samsara [cyclic existence] had diminished. Alas, he saw that they were still innumerable.
He was very sad. Being discouraged, he thought, "I do not have the capability to help beings; it is better that I rest in nirvana [liberation from cyclic existence]."
This thought contradicted his promise, and he burst into a thousand pieces and felt intense suffering.
Amitabha, by the power of his grace, reconstructed the body of Chenrezig. He gave him eleven faces and a thousand arms similar to the thousand spokes of the universal monarch's wheel and a thousand eyes, symbolic of the thousand buddhas of the present kalpa. Chenrezig could henceforth help the beings in this form as well as with his other forms of two or four arms. Amitabha asked Chenrezig to take his promise with still more vigor than before and then transmitted to him the six syllable mantra: OM MANI PADME HUNG.
This is the story of Chenrezig's manifestation in the relative domain."

Offline santamonicacj

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Re: Kalu Rinpoches talks about his life!!!
« Reply #26 on: December 27, 2011, 05:57:29 pm »
I feel those with expectations would have found exactly the opposite of what the wanted!  Wouldn't that be the best lesson to a practitioner idealizing his teacher?  That means he is still teaching you through your aversion from him.... ?
Sounds good. Just remember that idea decades from now when you meet the new incarnation of one of your dearly departed teachers.

But the truth be told, nobody could have met the expectations of people that knew the previous incarnation. The previous KR was something else.
« Last Edit: December 27, 2011, 06:01:26 pm by santamonicacj »
Warning: I'm enough of a fundamentalist Tibet style Buddhist to believe that for the last 1,000 years Tibet has produced a handful of enlightened masters in every generation. I do not ask that YOU believe it, but it will greatly simplify conversations if you understand that about me. Thanks.

Offline Mini-Senge

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Re: Kalu Rinpoches talks about his life!!!
« Reply #27 on: December 27, 2011, 05:59:38 pm »
Very true.  I will have to eat my words one day.  I have not yet, and it is not fair for me to say that outright like that.  I didnt mean it was easy or I wouldnt succumb to it.  Sorry, Buddy. :hug:
« Last Edit: December 27, 2011, 06:01:29 pm by Mini-Senge »

Offline Gesar

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Re: Kalu Rinpoches talks about his life!!!
« Reply #28 on: December 27, 2011, 06:07:13 pm »
These old Kalu/new Kalu comparison discussions that are going around sound like a good lesson in impermanence, lol !  This is such a new generation coming up right now, they may well have a completely new take on the tulku routine, perhaps better suited to this day and age, rather than to a bygone era.  Time will tell.

And let's not forget that it's not only Western-born tulkus who are having a shaky time with their status (which seems natural, if you figure a) most didn't get the traditional education and b) they come from democratic countries, not a theocracy, so they would have a different view of monastic life).  Gedun Choephel, back in the early 20th Century,  walked away from his tulku status and his monastery, saying he was "living a lie", and the Dalai Lama's oldest brother forgot all about his tulku status after coming to the US.  He married a teenager nearly 1/3 his age, and settled down to a secular life. There are probably other examples that we're not aware of. At least Kalu Rinpoche is dedicated to using his position to bring about positive change in the system and helping others.

The other film that's circulating on the topic of tulkus is "My Reincarnation", about Namkhai Norbu and his son, Yeshi.  The gist of it is pretty much the same as in Gesar Mukpo's film. 
« Last Edit: December 27, 2011, 06:08:47 pm by Gesar »

Offline santamonicacj

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Re: Kalu Rinpoches talks about his life!!!
« Reply #29 on: December 28, 2011, 12:30:10 am »
Rinpoche has a website. I like his ideas about how to change the situation in the monasteries.

http://www.paldenshangpa.net/2011/09/a-vision-for-the-future/

He also has a Facebook page. I'm sure everyone reading this can find it for themselves.

:r4wheel:
Warning: I'm enough of a fundamentalist Tibet style Buddhist to believe that for the last 1,000 years Tibet has produced a handful of enlightened masters in every generation. I do not ask that YOU believe it, but it will greatly simplify conversations if you understand that about me. Thanks.

 


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