Trungpa’s Influence Still Remains: On a Lama Getting Handsy

Recently, I received an e-mail from someone who is preparing to leave Naropa, and she shared this tidbit with me.

The monk harassment… was Lama Tenpa… he touched and came onto a student friend of mine, and then really really came on to me hard in a disgusting way. Since we’re both rather assertive women, we thought – who ELSE is he doing this to? we reported it to Student Affairs….. and you know what happened? He was sat down for a chat, then wrote us letters, that we could pick up in the student affairs office [re-contacting the victim, anyone?!] The letter said that he now understands naropa and american university policy…..he’s still teaching to this day.

Don’t you just love it? Apparently, Lama Grabby is still teaching at Naropa University, despite the fact that the school knows about him getting a bit too hands on with students and him admitting it, claiming that he now understands Naropa policy, which apparently forgives sexual assault. After all, when you remember that Naropa was founded by Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, a man who knew no boundaries with his followers. After all, when your founder forcibly strips two people at a “seminary party” and marries one of his followers before leaving the monastic order when she was fifteen (he was twenty-nine). Let me make it clear, one of their own publications proudly prints the fact that Chogyam Trungpa was a pædophile who abused his position as a religious leader (though, they don’t use that terminology).

So, who wants to get in on my pool on when the sycophantic alumni are going to start denying that there is anything wrong with Naropa?

Paths and Perception

People have opined that the reason I speak against Naropa has more to do with my pursuit of more… practical fields of study than what Naropa has to offer. While it is true that I am pursuing an Associates degree at the Art Institute of Colorado and I plan to pursue a computer science degree at Colorado School of Mines, the fact still remains that some people would see this as my sole reason for talking about Naropa University.

This is not the case. I have a great deal of love, respect and admiration for the vast majority of the liberal arts. I love Women’s Studies, Philosophy, Anthropology, Communication Studies and Sociology – to start with. I love Yoga, Tai Chi, Aikido and Ikebana. I love contemplative thinking (which explains why I am a member of a new age secret society) and I believe that the liberal arts adds of a lot of life and love to the heart of an engineering student.

What I do not like, or abide, is abuse of any kind. I couldn’t begin to tell you how my heart breaks when I receive an e-mail from someone telling me about their experiences and thanking me for having the courage to speak out. These kind of e-mails also help me to keep fighting the good fight against this so-called “University”.

In fact, I have every reason not to be doing this and it adversely affects my personal life. There are people who believe that I am in the wrong for speaking out against Naropa and I felt bad about exposing Naropa… which is hard when people e-mail you telling you their stories and reminding you of the reason why you started in the first place. I will make it clear now, I will continue to write and speak about Naropa until either they stop the abuse or they lose their licensure.

“The Art of Empathy” at a school with none

I recently learned that Naropa University is going to be holding an event on Friday called “The Art of Empathy” and the presenter is Karla McLaren. I don’t know if she knows abut Naropa or not, but here is the message I sent to her all the same:

Dear Karla,

My name is Jessica Sideways and I recently learned that you have been scheduled for an event at Naropa University on Friday, the 25th of October. I hope that you will reconsider and cancel your appearance at Naropa University because it’s leadership is not empathetic but sociopathic.

Recently, I was contacted by a woman whose child was a student at Naropa a few weeks ago. Her daughter was having seizures in class and the instructor gathered the class in a circle and held a discussion on how the other students were feeling about this, while this student was having the seizure! The instructor told her that he was at peace with the student having seizures. I posted the letter I received on my website, where I expose the fraud and abuses of Naropa University here:

https://boulderbuddhistscam.wordpress.com/2013/10/19/michelle-she-was-seizing-in-class-and-nobody-helped-her/

I do hope that you will reconsider speaking at Naropa University. Most sincerely,

Jessica Sideways