The New Improved Buddhist Council [now with more enzymes, lather and added vitamins] written by MADHUSHALA // Another MUST READ for Western Practitioners

The author writes so well what my biggest gripe is within the American Buddhist community, which in my opinion *( and this is the first time ever my opinion is on my blog, I do not think MY OPINION belongs on a Blog aimed at promoting the BUDDHA’S DOCTRINE, opinions lead to such “committees” and erroneous thinking, such as “The New and Improved Buddhist Council”) This sort of ‘council’  adds to the commercialization of Buddhism,adds to the erroneous notion that the Buddhadharma as taught by The Blessed One is “a feel good philosophy” and the element of white/well to do/ elite shaping Buddhism in the West is disturbing and will only lead to the decline of the Buddha’s Doctrine as it should be practiced if one’s wishes is to break the cycle of birth and death**. I could go on and on, but won’t , just read her article , make your own judgement and check back often as I will post related links and updates.

Be well,

Melissa Upasika 
* Cycle of birth and death :I also must choose my words carefully as people love to debate that Buddhism is or isn’t a religion, that Buddhist practice can be practiced by any religion, philosophy and so forth, the answer is yes Buddhist concepts can be practiced by anyone, with or without the conviction of the truth that the Buddha expounds in his doctrine, HOWEVER, to break the cycle of birth and death, once must practice the Doctrine in it’s entirety, with conviction in the Triple Gem, anything else falls into the category of a “feel good, self help philosophy” and is not everlasting and will not lead the practitioner to Nirvana.

The New Improved Buddhist Council [now with more enzymes, lather and added vitamins] written by  MADHUSHALA

Just like in the old days…

From Buddhadharma News: Teachers gather to discuss the future of Western Buddhism:

The conference, known as the Maha Teacher Council, is by invitation only.

It also was not announced more than a week prior to the event and the participants are a secret.

How does that strike you?

It strikes me as very odd.

Why is this any of our business? Why not just ignore it?

Maha Teacher Council sounds like something official. Some of the most prominent Buddhist teachers and book authors are going to be present. It involves some of the big Buddhist magazines. They shape the message that the masses will receive regarding the Buddhadharma. They have authority in terms of lineage, Buddhist practice, ownership of Buddhist properties such as centers, mass production of English language Buddhist information and of course media reach.

This affects the atmosphere of Buddhist practice for many of us. It possibly affects the direction some future Buddhist endeavors take. It further consolidates a power base for a select group of individuals to determine the mainstream Buddhist message.

And there’s more.

Brad Warner wrote in the comments on a Facebook mention of this item:

Oh nice. A self-selected groüp of important Büddhists get together to decide what’s best for the rest of us.

Gatherings like this worry me a lot. It’s pretty obvious what their intentions are.

The intent is to create a unified sense of what Buddhism ought to be. It’s like trying to create a unified sense of what art ought to be. Very Soviet sounding to me.

And yes, I will even admit to being bothered at not being invited. Because someone needs to take a stand against that attitude, which is starting to take over Buddhism in the west and will, I believe, win in the end.

[a commenter pointed out that there was no list of attendees or agenda published] I can’t find a list either. Which is also intriguing.

But I do think someone needs to question this kind of thing openly. I’m only sorry (and annoyed) that has to be me.

[When Brad makes a blog post about this it will go here. 6.8.11 And here it is Brad Warner’s Hardcore Zen: Uninvited to the Buddhist Party on Suicide Girls][In case he doesn’t you can always read mine]

Well Brad isn’t the only one with concerns about these conferences and self-appointed decision makers. Several other commenters had some issues with this though many dismissed it as rather unimportant in a self-important sort of way. I want to go through some of the issues that were brought up as well as some of the dismissals. READ MORE

RELATED BLOGS and Discussions

Brad Warner vs. The Maha Teachers

Posted on June 9, 2011 by David Chapman

Brad Warner has just blogged about the Maha Teachers Council. He thinks it’s a problem that he was not invited—not because his ego’s offended, but because it means the conference organizers are actively excluding what he represents.

I think he’s right. In fact, I suspect the conference is all about what he represents, and that is why he wasn’t invited. But his piece doesn’t explain what that is and why they are excluding that. Here’s my theory. READ MORE HERE 


Brad’s Invitation was Lost in the Mail…or something like that.

Last update..maybe..  



Last weekend I was contacted by Erin Koch of the Garrison Institute, the people who put on the Buddhist Maha Teacher Council I wrote about on Suicide Girls. She said:

“I respect and appreciate the teachers I have worked with for the past year I also respect difference and open communication. I am very sorry you did not receive your invitation. I have a record of your invitation (Dec. 9).

“I do wish you had corrected your blog and facebook page to reflect the truth. Criticism of the event aside, you were invited and your contributions would have been welcome. Noah Levine asked me to invite you which I did on Dec 9. I think of you as sangha and I want the dharma to be of benefit to us all.

“I feel that your post has given the Garrison Institute a negative appearance to many people who had not previously heard of us and this is upsetting to me. Critiquing the event would have been fair and interesting, but suggesting we are closed network that excluded you is just not correct. Even if you had not been invited, you could have contacted us. Many teachers that were unintentionally excluded from the invite list asked to come and none were turned down.

“I wish you and your students all the best and harbor no bad feeling.”

So first off, I apologize to Erin Koch and the Garrison Institute for unintentionally misrepresenting them. READ MORE HERE


While he apologizes we don’t forget the main reason why he and other’s posted in the first place.



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