We have all seen them and some used them.
The pretty pictures of Buddhas, Bodhisattva and Buddhist masters have been used indiscriminately by bloggers, serious Buddhists, even respected organizations in their blog posts and on leaflets.
It only takes a moment to investigate the source, and guess what!
This attractive art has been commissioned by the NKT to promote its activities.
NKT (New Kadampa Tradition) is an extremist Tibetan Buddhist cult. It has diverged from Buddhism to the point of being denounced by His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan Buddhist community. As authentic Buddhists, we are advised, for our own sake and to protect the integrity of Buddhism, not to mingle with the community and their teachings. Why do we use their art in our posts?
NKT use their images with their Internet presence and promotional materials:
However, through their growing presence online, others have started using them unknowingly:
NKT image used in Drukpa Kagyu Calendar app
NKT image on The Yogini Project’s Facebook page
NKT Atisha image is one of NKT images that appear on Buddhistdoor magazine’s Facebook page and website.
Rime Buddhist Center, confirmed not NKT.
(The organizations have been informed for a chance to remedy or not repeat their mistake.)
NKT images used as art on YouTube videos
Many are the cases of abuse and suffering this dangerous cult has inflicted upon its unsuspecting members, and the damage it has been doing to the image and purity of the ancient Buddhist tradition as a benign religion and a way to achieving ultimate goodness is unforgivable and possibly irreversible. It takes as little as a few seconds to find out through Google search. Yet, awareness seems to remain limited.
The information age has its advantages as well as dangers. As responsible Buddhists, we take utmost care to check the information sources for our posts. So why do we choose to be ignorant and careless about the choice of art we post with them?
NKT Tharpa Publications e-shop from where the art originates and has been spread by ignorant users
NKT: “Denounce the Dalai Lama, accept a sole teacher!” – Tricycle Magazine article describes well the history and the danger NKT has posed
The controversy – a well-respected blog dedicated to the issue of abuse in Tibetan Buddhism
Read more: NKT fake art – NKT’s disregard for proper Buddhist art tradition