SOAS University of London

Tibetan Studies at SOAS

The Shugden Controversy and the 14th Dalai Lama


Date: 15 August 2014Time: 6:00 PM

Finishes: 15 August 2014Time: 8:00 PM

Venue: Vernon Square Room: V211

Type of Event: Panel Discussion

This event addressed the controversy surrounding the propitiation of Dorje Shugden in the Geluk school of Tibetan Buddhism. Although many members of the school have ceased to honor Shugden and regard his propitiation as problematic, a vocal minority sees him as an essential component of Geluk orthodoxy. The latter now understand themselves as minority discriminated against on religious grounds. This workshop will include presentations by traditional exponents of both sides of the controversy and by academic authorities. 

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Panel Discussion: The Shugden Controversy and the 14th Dalai Lama


The discussion was moderated by Dr Nathan W. Hill, Lecturer in Tibetan and Linguistics at SOAS. Speakers include: 

  • Kelsang Rabten (International Shugden Community): 'Refuting the claim of Tenzin Gyatso as an authentic Dalai Lama'
  • Geshe Tashi Tsering (Jamyang Buddhist Centre): 'Refuting the claim of Dugyal (Shugden) as a protector in the Tsongkhapa tradition'
  • Carol McQuire (former member of New Kadampa Tradition): 'Shugden 'practitioners' or Shugden 'followers'?'
  • Dr Martin A. Mills (University of Aberdeen): 'Human rights and the Shugden ban amongst Himalayan communities'
  • Thierry Dodin: 'From Lhasa to Singapore: History and function of Shugden worship'
  • John McBretney (International Shugden Community): 'The suffering of Shugden Buddhists within the Tibetan Exile Community, and the Dalai Lama's role in this'

Organiser: Dr Nathan W. Hill

Sponsor: London Ney