Case 41-2018: RIGPA & Sogyal Rinpoche
Notification to Matthieu Ricard and Karuna-Shechen
On April 2, 2018, an international Notification to Matthieu Ricard & Karuna-Shechen is issued due to the criminal actions of RIGPA & Sogyal Rinpoche, who have been sentenced Responsible for Torture and Slavery, Fraud and Organized Crime, Violation of Women’s Rights and Violation of Buddhist Law. This Ethical Judgment is the karmic consequence of the systematic criminal behavior of sexual abuses and forced labor carried out by Sogyal Rinpoche and his illegal RIGPA sect, which constitute Crimes against Humanity according to the International Human Rights Law.
Although His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama Tenzin Gyatso was aware of the crimes of Sogyal Rinpoche and the RIGPA sect for more than 30 years, not only did he not denounce such criminal behaviors and maintained a code of silence, but even supported and participated in activities carried out by this organization and its criminal leader, as when in 2008 he inaugurated the Lerab Ling temple in France. In fact, Sogyal Rinpoche and the RIGPA Sect have repeatedly used the figure of the Dalai Lama to validate themselves in the face of the accusations of sexual abuse, continuing to abuse and swindle many people thanks to the ethical and spiritual legitimacy that they claimed to receive, which involved nothing more and nothing less than saying to be under the guidance and patronage of the Dalai Lama. Obviously, in addition to the economic contributions that RIGPA made to Tibetan projects, the code of complicit silence between Sogyal Rinpoche and His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama Tenzin Gyatso is due to an incorrect attempt to protect the Dharma. The International Buddhist Ethics Committee has noticed that this pattern of behavior of the Dalai Lama, which has also been evident in his silence facing the violations of Buddhist Ethics committed by Bhaddanta Kumarabhivamsa, Lama Lobzang and the Karma Kagyu Lineage, resembles the behavior of the Catholic Church in the face of thousands of cases of sexual abuses of children, considering that it is better to cover up the complaints, trying to preserve a good and pure image of the spiritual tradition in the face of public opinion. Thus, the Dalai Lama would be ignoring the fact that when there is corruption within a government or community the best thing that can be done is to purify such organization through ethical and legal means, even requiring the expulsion of those members who commit violations, otherwise an individual act tarnishes the entire community. However, instead of resorting to the ethical and legal procedures of Buddhist Law, His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama Tenzin Gyatso has recommended the victims of abuse that all what they should do is make the abuses public through the newspapers and the radio. This represents a great ethical failure that prevents all kinds of restorative ethical justice. The Great Master Siddhartha Gautama established ethical and legal procedures that should be followed by all Buddhist apprentices and masters, such as the expulsion of members who commit sexual abuse or homicidal acts, so that every Spiritual Commune (Sangha) ignoring accusations of serious criminal acts will be totally betraying and violating the Buddhist Law, as is the case of the IBC (International Buddhist Confederation), which not only has the genocidal criminal Bhaddanta Kumarabhivamsa as its Spiritual Patron, but also had the very criminal Sogyal Rinpoche as a member of its Supreme Dhamma Council.
On the other hand, in relation to the words expressed by Matthieu Ricard in July 2017, it is confirmed that he overstepped his functions and knowledge by stating that some victims of Sogyal Rinpoche were guilty of misrepresentation for having suggested that the Dalai Lama has not reacted publically to the testimonies concerning Sogyal Rinpoche‘s abuse for financial reasons or out of a misguided attempt to protect Buddhism. In fact, if Matthieu Ricard would be right and His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama Tenzin Gyatso were strongly allergic to any kind of duplicity and pretense, then after hearing about the abuses he should have declared Sogyal Rinpoche as a non-enlightened false Buddhist master, and he never had to have supported him spiritually or having shared any activity with this criminal who fouled the legitimacy of the entire Tibetan Buddhism.
The International Buddhist Ethics Committee makes a total repudiation of Matthieu Ricard‘s words when he defended the complicit silence in the face of Sogyal Rinpoche‘s crimes against humanity, by saying that it is not Dalai Lama’s role to act as an international Buddhist policeman. This very poor excuse has a structural hypocrisy bias, since the Dalai Lama has made public criticisms against China, the U.N. and even the Sea Shepherd organization, without it being considered to act as a Buddhist Policeman. The fact of criticizing some people while keeping complicit silence and protecting some others shows great duplicity and double standards of morality on the part of the Dalai Lama. According to the International Buddhist Ethics Committee, whose role is indeed to act as an International Buddhist Justice, this kind of bad excuses show that Matthieu Ricard, even though he is a great activist for the rights of animals, does not constitute an adequate ethical point of reference, for lacking the compassionate wisdom (karuna-prajña) that is necessary to have empathy with the victims and to be an enlightened and humanitarian Buddhist master. At the same time, since in 2015 Matthieu Ricard & Karuna-Shechen received a donation of 5426 Euros coming from the RIGPA Criminal Sect, the International Buddhist Ethics Committee gives the order that this money is returned as soon as possible for having spurious and illegal origins, such as fraud, forced labor, psychological manipulation and sexual abuses carried out by Sogyal Rinpoche. In case of breaching this legal requirement, Matthieu Ricard & Karuna-Shechen could be incurring acts of corruption.
The Buddhist Law requires that apprentices, Buddhist masters and spiritual communes practice active contemplation, compassionate wisdom and humanitarian ethics, performing acts of Purification and Enlightenment. Therefore, it is confirmed not only the repudiation against those communities and masters -such as RIGPA and Sogyal Rinpoche– who have practiced False and Criminal Buddhism, but are also repudiated all those who keep complicit silence in the face of crimes that attempt against purity and integrity of Spirituality, as is the case of sexual abuse, violence and fraud. Ergo, the International Buddhist Ethics Committee again rules that every spiritual commune (sangha) carrying out acts of direct support or acts of silence in the face of international crimes will be absolutely violating the Buddhist Law, even in the case of millionaire and famous organizations with politic contacts.
Finally, the International Buddhist Ethics Committee recalls that in 2005 His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama Tenzin Gyatso publicly stated that if science proves some belief of Buddhism wrong, then Buddhism will have to change. Therefore, since the legal sciences show that Tibetan Buddhism led by the Dalai Lama has been wrong in maintaining complicit silence in the face of the physical and psychological abuses of Sogyal Rinpoche, then it is inevitably proven that Tibetan Buddhism has to change and the Dalai Lama should apologize publicly for his mistakes.
Always with spirit of reconciliation (maitri),
Master Maitreya Samyaksambuddha
President and Judge of the International Buddhist Ethics Committee & Buddhist Tribunal on Human Rights