Smear: NKT worships a spirit
Truth: Not one single person in the NKT worships a spirit. It is superstitious, uninformed and offensive to suggest that they do.
Some people suggest that NKT students and teachers are so stupid that they don’t even know they are worshipping a spirit but think they are relying upon a Buddha. This is both patronizing and ignorant.
As with all Buddhist traditions, the objects of refuge for NKT practitioners are Buddha, the Dharma he taught, and the Sangha (spiritual community) following those teachings. At the beginning of all teaching and meditation sessions we recite Liberating Prayer, which is a praise to Buddha Shakyamuni written by Geshe Kelsang. As Buddhists, we never go for refuge to an object other than the Three Jewels of Buddha, Dharma and Sangha.
As part of their spiritual practice, NKT practitioners rely upon the Dharma Protector Dorje Shugden – who is seen as one with the Wisdom Buddha Manjushri – to help them gain realizations of Buddha’s teachings of Sutra and Tantra. The Dalai Lama has rejected the view of his own teachers and mistakenly said that Dorje Shugden is an evil spirit. However, that is his opinion and there are many Gelug and Sakya Lamas and practitioners who heartily disagree with him and many valid proofs that Dorje Shugden is a Buddha.
The Dalai Lama’s pronouncements on this subject have led to most of the demonization and marginalization of NKT students found in the world today, but they are politically motivated and not based on any truth or any practitioner’s experience. More information on this controversy and the scriptural, historical and practical refutations of the Dalai Lama’s opinions can be found here: www.WisdomBuddhaDorjeShugden.org
For a detailed, academic history of Protector Dorje Shugden based on the legacy of rituals, historical works and art, please see Dorje Shugden History.