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Ösel Tendzin

photo from Flameout
Gurus/Spiritual Masters
Ösel Tendzin
current suggested assesment
Tradition Tibetan Buddhist
Gurus Chögyam Trungpa
Category Nondual
Psychology lack of self-mastery, emotionally irresponsible (Sexually promiscious - transmitted HIV)
Inspiration Buddhist thoughtform/tradition
Disciples/Devotees None?
Critics see Buddhists in U.S. Agonize on AIDS Issue
Abuses See assesment
Assesment A weak person, lacking in self control, not a bad person, just incapable of accepting responsibility for the facts, preferring to stick his head in the sand. Was probabaly limited to surface consciousnes sonly, with a few glimpses of anything more during meditation

From Wikipedia:

Ösel Tendzin (died 1990) was a controversial western Buddhist, born Thomas F. Rich in Passaic, N.J., Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche's principal student and "Vajra Regent." Tendzin directed Vajradhatu (which later became Shambhala International) after Trungpa's death in 1987. Many in Trungpa's community (sangha) felt angry and betrayed when they learned in December 1988 that Ösel Tendzin had contracted HIV and continued to have unprotected sex with his students, without informing them, and transmitted it to a student through oral sex, resulting in the subsequent death from AIDS of the young man. (The young man's girlfriend, who also contracted HIV as a result, is reportedly still alive.) There was also concern that some others close to Tendzin also knew that Tendzin was HIV positive and sexually active, and had kept silent. Tendzin admitted that he was responsible and said that Chögyam Trungpa had told him to keep his HIV a secret and that his tantric practice would prevent him passing the HIV infection onto his students. The Regent and the Board of Directors, however, suppressed efforts by Editor Rick Fields to cover the issue in Vajradhatu's publication, the Vajradhatu Sun, leading to Fields' firing and/or resignation. (Fields, 1992, p. 366) Ösel Tendzin died of AIDS in 1990.

Ösel Tendzin should not be confused with Tenzin Ösel, the Spanish-born tulku of Thubten Yeshe.

See also:

February 21, 1989 - external link Buddhists in U.S. Agonize on AIDS Issue. By Dyan Zaslowsky, special to the New York Times

Reading the article at the above link, I came to the conclusion that these people are no better than those Christian churches who for years defended pedophiles in their ranks!

The above also indicates a failure of responsibility, because this guy was too weak to take responsibility for his actions, instead his affective being preferred to believe Chögyam Trungpa's obviously well-meaning but incorrect statement. Perhaps what Tringpa says may even be true in the case of an advanced adept, but how many such adepts are there? (And anyone advanced enough to be able to negate the effect of the HIV virus would also have sufficient self control not to have gotten into that suituation in the first place)

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page by M.Alan Kazlev. Wikipedia content licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Ösel Tendzin".
page uploaded 16 November 2006, last modified 14 December