Lifting the Veil off the Fourteen Root Infractions in Tantric “Buddhism” - Part 1: Background

Published:2014/05/22     08:00

(Reported by the True Heart News interviewing team in Taipei)

The cultivation of the Vajrayana Tantra and the contents of the associated fourteen tantric root infractions, or root downfalls, have long been shrouded in mystery and have been inaccessible subjects for Chinese Buddhists. That is to be changed now. Tsongkhapa’s exposition of the fourteen root downfalls has recently been translated into Chinese by Tshangyang Dorje (昌央多傑), providing scholars of the four major Tibetan “Buddhist” sects access to the study of tantric precepts. The fourteen root infractions of Tibetan Tantric Buddhism were established specifically for the Vajrayana Tantra, and have nothing to do with the Buddhist precepts.

Tibetan “Buddhism” bases its exegesis of the fourteen root infractions upon Tsongkhapa’s Fruit Clusters of Siddhis, which defines each precept and details their ordination procedures. Moreover, because of his preference for and attachment to the Highest Yoga Tantra (Anuttarayoga Tantra), Tsongkhapa consciously included the underlying philosophy of the Highest Yoga Tantra in his explication of the associated fourteen root infractions.

In Vajrayana, sexual Tantra is practiced by all guru masters of the four sects of Tibetan “Buddhism,” and has demoralized Tibet since the late Ming Dynasty. Political rivalry amongst the four sects and their discrepant interpretations of the tantric precepts further exacerbated the situation and brought about chaos in Tibet. The resulting political and social turbulence prompted Tsongkhapa to compile the first complete and systematic exposition of the fourteen tantric root infractions.


As the Gelug sect took over the leadership power in the Tibetan theocracy starting with the fifth Dalai Lama, the exegesis of the root infractions by Tsongkhapa, a patriarch of the Gelug lineage, was deemed correct and naturally became the most authoritative guidelines for Vajrayana practitioners. It has been devoutly and unquestioningly adhered to ever since.

In Old Tibet, tantric doctrines had been guarded with absolute secrecy and were rarely transmitted to outsiders. However, after the 14th Dalai Lama went into exile in Dharamsala, India, in the mid-twentieth century, the esoteric tantra has been deliberately taught and disseminated to Westerners publicly, especially Hollywood luminaries, with the goal of popularizing Tibetan Tantric “Buddhism.” As for the people in mainland China and Taiwan, they did not learn the truth about Vajrayana Tantra until Tibetan "Buddhism" made its way back from the West to Asia.

The Vajrayana Tantra had been propagated in Old Tibet for centuries. But because of geographical isolation and inaccessibility, its spread was very limited in mainland China. The exile of the 14th Dalai Lama prompted a swift and global expansion of Vajrayana’s tantric Couple-Practice. Given the liberal attitude toward sexual matters in Europe and America, Westerners usually do not resist the sexual tantra as much as conservative Asians.

To make matter worse, the 14th Dalai Lama has been preaching the Vajrayana Tantra as a kind of Buddhist cultivation. With open endorsement from some hedonic Hollywood celebrities, Tantric “Buddhism” built up an international popularity almost overnight, transforming this once obscure cultish faith that preaches sex as a means of spiritual enlightenment into the most-recognized Buddhist branch for Westerners, the majority of whom have practically no knowledge of orthodox Buddhism.

The last few decades saw Tantric “Buddhism” coming back to haunt Asia. Today, Tibetan Tantric “Buddhism” is spreading underground in mainland China, while in Japan, Shingon Buddhism is allowing its monastics to marry and have children in the temple. In terms of Buddhist doctrinal practice, the essence of Mahayana Buddhism has been totally adulterated in Japan and has degenerated into a theistic faith, deviating far from the Bodhisattva Way as well.

All gurus of Tibetan “Buddhism” are bound by the vow to expound the dharma in writing and therefore must publish books on the Tantra once they are conferred the guru status. Since their works focus entirely on the Vajrayana Tantra and oftentimes duplicate each other’s materials, the mass of books they flood the market with are drowning out the ones composed by Dharma masters of orthodox Buddhism and fueling the trend of Couple-Practice cultivation in China.

The film industry is another advocate of Tibetan “Buddhism.” Movies such as Little Buddha and A Kid from Tibet praise the Tibetan gurus as living gods, as if all maroon-robed lamas possess extraordinary powers and profound insight of the Buddha Dharma, while in reality, they only specialize in the Couple-Practice Tantra which is altogether perverted and non-Buddhist in nature.

Many fictions and movies glamorize the mudras, or hand-seals, of Tantric “Buddhism” as being able to effectuate amazing supernatural powers. People not in the know have no idea that the “action hand seals,” for instance, actually symbolizes highly complicated sex positions. In fact, these mudras are gestures for entangling body parts in the bedchamber.

In recent years, Tibetan “Buddhism” is sneakily stretching its claws toward Taiwan and mainland China. Many Chinese Buddhist monastics and dharma masters have been unknowingly supporting its wicked teachings and some have even made headlines because of the sexual abuses and scandals they perpetrated after being certified as a rinpoche. Apart from Buddhist disciples, many upper class intellectuals in Taiwan are also blindly worshipping the Dalai Lama as well as the living tulkus, dharma kings, and rinpoches. Uninformed and misguided, they ignored many reports about lamas’ uninhibited sexual practice with intransigent disbelief.

The translated fourteen tantric root infractions and the numerous exposés of sex-centered cultivation in Tantric “Buddhism” in western countries are undeniable proofs that the credulous followers of Tibetan “Buddhism” in Taiwan and China have been fooled, by lamas or the Fengshan Temple in Hsinchu, Taiwan, into believing that Tantric “Buddhism” does not propagate sexual cultivation.

To protect Buddhist learners and the public from the sexual predation of Tibetan “Buddhism,” the True Enlightenment Education Foundation has been trying to expose the licentious nature of the Vajrayana Tantra and the fact that Tantric “Buddhism” is a sex cult at the core. The Foundation aims to drive this phony Buddhist branch out of Buddhism and put an end to its religious counterfeiting.

Further, family integrity is seriously under threat when a parent is involved in the adulterous tantric practice. Therefore, to safeguard family integrity and welfare of young children, we will make known to the world that the “religious objective” of the Dalai Lamas, the dharma kings and the rinpoches are none other than “philandering with all women.” The availability of the Chinese translation of Tsongkhapa’s exposition on the fourteen tantric root infractions by Tshangyang Dorje provides the long awaited textual basis to debunk them one by one.(Reported by the Interviewing Team)20140522

Editor's Note:

This article is an English version of the Chinese edition published on

March 15, 2014