using the arrow buttons.
by clicking on the page.
the page around when zoomed in by dragging it.
the zoom using the slider when zoomed-in.
by clicking on the zoomed-in page.
by entering text in the search field, and select "This Issue" or "All Issues"
by clicking on thumbnails to select pages, and then press the print button.
displays sections with thumbnails and descriptions.
displays a slider of thumbnails. Click on a page to jump.
allows you to browse the full archive.
about your subscription?
Lions Roar : November 2019
BUDDHISM: THE NEXT 40 YEARS ELIGIONS AREN’T LIKE parents: they don’t get tosay,“DoasIsay,notasIdo.” Buddhism, like other religions, preaches all kinds of good things—love, wisdom, compassion. But the real teaching isn’t the preaching. It’s how we live. It’s how our communities reflect our values. There was a time when Buddhists could think their religion was just a bit better than the others. But with Buddhist-led wars and ethnic cleansing, high-profile scandals, and honest analysis of Buddhist communities, we see that Buddhism is too often contaminated with the same chauvanism, abuses, and injustices as the rest of society. Of course this isn’t surprising. The Buddha taught immac- ulate, universal realities like the four noble truths and three marks of existence. But as for the rest, Buddhism is a creation of people, and it has always evolved. It is in our hands. That’s why we have such a magnificent opportunity. As we look ahead to Buddhism’s next forty years, what greater gift can we give to the world than to make Buddhism a model of how to live together with harmony, loving-kindness, wisdom, and justice? To do that, Buddhism needs to reform and progress, una- fraid to look at ourselves honestly and change what needs to be changed. We will benefit, and so will the world. We won’t achieve perfection in our communities, anymore than any of us will achieve perfection personally. But more and more, step by step, we will be able to say, “Do as we do.” —MELVIN MCLEOD, Editor-in-Chief Us Too Sexual misconduct and abuse by Buddhist teachers— some high profile, others under the radar—are hurting women, splitting communities, destroying people’s faith in Buddhist practice, and blackening Buddhism’s reputation. Buddhist teacher TRUDY GOODMAN looks at the history, the harm, and what we can do to stop it. “One is not called noble who harms living beings. By not harming living beings one is called noble.” —THE BUDDHA, IN THE DHAMMAPADA THE BUDDHA’S TEACHING is crystal clear: of the three foun- dations that support the whole path of practice, the foremost is Reforming Buddhism sila—ethical living, goodness. The other two, samadhi and pra- jna, meditation and wisdom, follow. Given this clarity, it’s trou- bling to see communities once again grappling with the abuse, betrayal, and damage that continue to haunt and discredit our Buddhist world. In addition to the well-publicized scandals involving Sogyal Rinpoche, Sakyong Mipham, and Eido Roshi, I could name two dozen discredited male teachers from recent decades. As a psychol- ogist and dharma teacher, I’ve observed and consulted with several communities struggling with their teacher’s misconduct. And I’ve been through my own devastating experience. In the 1990s, the scourge of substance abuse and sexual misconduct robbed me of the Zen master husband who was the love of my life. I know firsthand the heavy price families and sanghas pay when the teacher can’t live his teachings. Why does this keep happening when the consequences are so painful? Here, I will name some of the issues and suggest what’s become clear to those of us who have walked this painful road. In the early 1980s, shameful revelations of sexual, financial, and substance abuse by several respected Zen masters and other teachers of the dharma first came to light. These teachers were idolized by their communities. Some had encouraged such idealization to strengthen their students’ faith, but it left them alone on their pedestals, without checks or balances on their behavior. In those days, practically no one demanded account- ability and transparency, nor dared give honest feedback to teachers. Students whose teachers abused their trust either stopped practicing or left their sanghas. I know women who are still recovering from the damage done to their spiritual lives back then. Even today, women Buddhists who dare to speak out face derision and scorn from their male teachers and those who support them. Of course, some men have also been victims of abuse, usually at the hands of male teachers. Buddhism is steeped in the same patriarchal oppression found in most of the world’s religious institutions. Women have been widely erased from Buddhist recorded history, denied access to robes and leadership positions, and victimized by male teachers and leaders. Sexual misconduct by otherwise reputable teachers is fos- tered by these hierarchical power structures in which the teacher’s voice is the most important. Sometimes, those in posi- tions of authority in a sangha collude with the teacher’s abusive behaviors by rationalizing them or covering them up to protect the teacher from uncomfortable feedback. The pervasiveness of patriarchy in Western Buddhism allows abusive male teachers to cause harm without being held R LION’S ROAR | NOVEMBER 2019 61