The site Digital Tibetan Altar is maintained by William L Cassidy, who calls himself Tulku Tenpa Rinpoche. Although he scorns the value of credentials http://tibetanaltar.blogspot.com/2009/07/lasting-reflections.html he claims to have them himself http://tibetanaltar.blogspot.com/2008/01/chewing-on-cannibals.html. It is crucial for anyone visiting that site to be aware that Cassidy (aka Tulku Tenpa Rinpoche)has a criminal history and does not have any authentic claim to a pure lineage. Additionally, if you look through his copious entries, you find no reference to his lineage or any evidence that he was indeed recognized by any Tibetan Master beyond his own words. His credentials are his own fabrication. You will note that he draws from Lineages randomly, putting together his own “teachings” based on whatever teaching, practice or Lama he is interested in at the moment. This is counter to Vajrayana Buddhism.
To those unfamiliar with Vajrayana Buddhism, these issues are extremely significant. Sogyal Rinpoche outlines the importance of Lineage, especially in this time of Dharma emerging in the West, in The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying as follows:
“The West has become a haven for spiritual charlatans. In the case of a scientist, you can verify who is genuine and who is not, because other scientists can check their background and test their findings. Yet in the West, without the guidelines and criteria of a thriving and full-fledged wisdom culture, the authenticity of so-called “masters” is almost impossible to establish. Anyone, it seems, can parade as a master and attract a following.
This was not the case in Tibet, where choosing a particular path or teacher to follow was far safer. People coming to Tibetan Buddhism for the first time often wonder why such great importance is placed on lineage, on the unbroken chain of transmission from master to master. Lineage serves as a crucial safeguard: It maintains the authenticity and purity of the teaching. People know who a master is from who his master is. It is not a question of preserving some fossilized, ritualistic knowledge, but of transmitting from heart to heart, from mind to mind, an essential and living wisdom and its skillful and powerful methods.” pg128 The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying by Sogyal Rinpoche, copyright 1993 by Rigpa Fellowship published by HarperCollins 1994
It is clear from the above passage, and will be clear in any authentic Vajrayana Buddhist environment, that the Spiritual Master is essential to success on this difficult path. It is not enough to simply become well read in Buddhist scripture. Every sincere practitioner must find a qualified teacher. In the book Mother of Knowledge, translated by Tarthang Tulku, Yeshe Tsogyal is devastated by grief when her Spiritual Master, Guru Rinpoche is leaving the world of human beings, even though she herself has attained full realization and is the repository of all his teachings. She cries out:
“Kye Hud! Orgyan Rinpoche!
A time of thick darkness has come to Tibet:
A time when hermitages are empty;
a time when the Dharma throne is vacant;
a time when vase initiations are no more.
Now we can only guess as to the nature of things;
now we must look to books for teachings;
now we can only visualize the lama;
now we must use images as his substitute;
now we must rely on dreams and visions;
now a grievous time has come!” Mother of Knowledge The Enlightenment of Ye-shes mTsho-rgyal by Namka’I snying-po Translated by Tarthang Tulku copyright 1983 by Dharma Publishing pg155
If you have arrived at this site because you are wondering who “Tulku Tenpa” is, please beware! The Digital Tibetan Altar is a site created by a convicted felon, and con-man. If you are interested in learning about Vajrayana Buddhism and learning from qualified masters, please visit the following sites (note each has a page devoted to it’s lineage masters):
There are many, many resources out there for those interested in exploring Vajrayana Buddhism. The Buddhist teachings expound on the importance of a student being cautious and scrutinizing a would-be teacher in order to choose one with great care, because a student places his most precious posession in the hands of the teacher – his spiritual life. Please do NOT be taken in by this False Tulku.
For more information on the teacher-student relationship here are two books that can get you started:
This post presents the facts regarding additional inconsistencies in the posts made by William Cassidy, aka Tulku Tenpa. In his latest post he states, “(1) Penor Rinpoche never conferred the honorific “Jetsunma” on Alyce Zeoli. Her continued use of this honorific — to which she is not entitled.” This statement is completely unfounded. His Holiness Penor Rinpoche, the Third Drubwang referred to her as Jetsunma at the end of her enthronement. It was videotaped, and broadcast by TV networks in front of a large audience of Tibetans and Americans.
Here is a video clip from Jetsunma’s trip to Bylakuppe in 1996, in which His Holiness Penor Rinpoche refers to her as Jetsunma and makes many offerings to her. It is irrefutable. Even If one doubts the translation, a non Tibetan speaker can clearly hear His Holiness utter the word “Jetsunma.”
Jetsunma in India 1996 – Part 2
Translated by Sangye Khandro
And as it has gone well until now, I also have an expectation and on into the future That the entire sangha and our sangha s together will maintain this auspicious connection for the benefit of the doctrine and sentient beings and that year by year this will only increase. And that also all of your studies of the Buddha Dharma will be most excellent and very stable and always improving, ever increasing.
And now as an indication today, although I don’t have too much to offer and very humbly to indicate the very special occasion now so with prayers for Jetsunma’s longevity and the longevity of the doctrine, I offer her the Tashi Katag, white scarf of auspiciousness. As a support for her longevity, I offer her the image of the Buddha Amitayus. As a support for her enlightened speech to be ever increasing, I offer her the vajra and bell. And as a support for enlightened mind, I offer the stupa. I offer her the collected works of the Terton Jetsun Nyingpo. And I offer her the crossed Vajra as a seat for her to remain upon to indicate her longevity in this world. And the white conch shell and a bolt of brocades, otherwise I don’t have to much to offer…
We have received reports that in 2005 His Holiness from the throne at the New York State Palyul Retreat Center led a tsog in Jetsunma’s honor, and taught about her, referring to her as Jetsunma in front of a hundred students, calling her “a good and perfect teacher.”
We have also been informed that all visiting Vajrayana Lamas to KPC refer to her as Jetsunma.
In this Long Life Prayer written by His Holiness Ngawang Tenzin in which he not only refers to her as Jetsunma, but recognizes her as an incarnation of Mandarava.
As to the blog post by students of Jetsunma commented on by Cassidy, given that Jetsunma has been recognized by peerless Vajrayana Masters such as His Holiness Penor Rinpoche and His Holiness Dilgo KhyentseRinpoche, as an enlightened master herself, it is only natural that her students would view her as a Living Buddha.
In a recent blog post on Digital Tibetan Buddhist Altar, William Cassidy aka Tenpa made more unfabricated statements in his dark war against the Dharma. Here are the facts.
From Post: Back a couple of months ago, Alyce Louise Zeoli (she calls herself “Jetsunma,” and claims she is a “living Buddha”) called police near her Barnesville, Maryland home to report that, “a team of intruders” were observed “stalking the perimeter.” Nothing wrong with that — can’t be too careful these days.
Jetsunma is the honorific conferred on Akhon Lhamo by His Holiness Penor Rinpoche when he enthroned her as a Tulku in 1988.
Jetsunma does not refer to herself as a “Living Buddha” but others do. Since His Holiness’ recognition of her, she has also been recognized by other lamas. To learn more, click here
There was sign of intruder activity. Security saw people on Jetsunma’s property in the middle of the night and called the police. A police report was filed.
From Post: Trouble is, as the investigation progressed, we are informed that the “intruders” were subsequently identified as undercover narcotics investigators conducting a surveillance.
This is a fabrication on the part of William Cassidy.
From Post: As previously reported elsewhere, on February 3, 2008, a personally owned vehicle registered to Alyce Louise Zeoli was stopped by police near Vega, Texas, carrying a quantity of narcotics from the KPC center in Sedona, Arizona to the KPC center in Poolesville, Maryland. Two arrests were made.
The vehicle had been pulled over for a moving violation, and the young man driving the car, being honest,without being asked told the officer that he had in his possession a small amount of marijuana. For this, the young man and his mother who was also in the vehicle were arrested. They were in the process of moving from Arizona to Maryland, and Jetsunma had lent them her car to be able to move their large rescued dog.
From Post: Although both Alyce Zeoli and her organization, Kunzang Palyul Choling (KPC) made attempts to sweep this one under the rug, the incident somehow came to the attention of narcotics intelligence officers in the Washington, D.C. area.
This is a fabrication. Alyce Zeoli and KPC had nothing to do with the situation.
The rest is a story in which Cassidy makes a lot of implications that are mean spirited and unfounded.
On the blog maintained by Cassidy under the pseudonym “Tulku Tenpa Rinpoche” he posted the following yesterday:
You can see he begins by saying that he was in Washington D.C. and reported that it was hot and humid. Reports in from Maryland and D.C. indicate the weather there has been unusually pleasant for the past few weeks. Here is the forecast for tomorrow as objective evidence (obviously overnight weather won’t give an idea of the daytime temps):
Weather for Washington, DC on 7-8-09
Additionally he mentions specifically Bridge Street Books. Reports from local area residents indicate the bookstore has not been air conditioned–at least not the past few days—and a quick check with the bookstore indicated that they do not carry the book he mentioned. Though these points may seem trivial, we are sharing them to highlight the fact that this man cannot be trusted. He could easily have checked a weather report if he wanted to pretend he was in D.C., but instead he relies on his reader’s trust and says whatever he thinks sounds convincing. Please be warned, this man cannot be trusted. Please read everything on his blog with that understanding, do not fall for false Dharma!