Dalai Lama Knew of Sexual Abuse by Buddist Teachers for 25 Years
Dalai Lama responds to sexual abuse victims
The Dalai Lama said Saturday that he was fully aware of the sexual abuse by Buddhist teachers since the 1990s, before stating that such allegations are "nothing new".
The widely respected spiritual leader, who is looked up to by millions of followers and Buddhists around the world, made the decision during a four-day visit to the Netherlands, where he met with multiple victims of abuse by Buddhist teachers.
He responded to a call from a dozen sexual abuse victims who launched a campaign requesting to meet him during his European trip.
"We found refuge in Buddhism with an open mind and heart, until we were raped in its name," the victims said in their petition.
"I already did know these things, nothing new," the Dalai Lama said in response on Dutch public television NOS late Saturday.
"Twenty-five years ago... someone mentioned about a problem of sexual allegations" at a conference for western Buddhist teachers in Dharamshala, a hill town in northern India, he added.
According to Yahoo: People who commit sexual abuse "don't care about the Buddha's teaching.
So now that everything has been made public, people may concern about their shame," he said, speaking in English.
Tseten Samdup Chhoekyapa, a representative of the Tibetan spiritual leader in Europe, said Friday that the Dalai Lama "has consistently denounced such irresponsible and unethical behaviour".
Tibetan spiritual leaders are due to meet in Dharamshala in November.
"At that time they should talk about it," the Dalai Lama said in his televised comments Saturday. "I think the religious leaders should pay more attention."