Tradition True & Untrue

I read this article today and have some thoughts on it as follows.

An innovative approach may not necessarily be a repudiation of the past and thus a threat to tradition. It may actually be a rediscovery of what is true and reveal tradition as preserved to be false.

However, some masters refuse, perhaps as an issue of face, to face up to the fact that they do not have a monopoly on the truth. In such instances, instead of preserving a true tradition they actually make a mockery of it and does injustice to students by passing off a distorted tradition as being unchanged and thus worthy of transmission when nothing could be further from the truth.

Thus, when a master claims his style to be unchanged I would recommend to thank him and quickly walk away because no style remains unchanged no matter what the master says.

Principles can be immutable but the expressions and characteristics that define a style will change because no two persons are alike. For example, I used to learn from a master whom many lauded as being recognized as so and so an authority but not many know that his ability at a certain practice that underlies his style is bad and even his own teacher said so. That being the case his transmission has already veered off the path.

No one likes to hear anything bad about the style that they go with. But then when one gains little from the practice it is one who pays the price. So if you value your time and money pay heed to the warning signs and sometimes you may want to listen to your rational mind rather than your emotional mind.

When necessary, do not hesitate to kill Buddha on the road when you see him. That or remain a prisoner of your own making.

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