ADDRESSING ETHICAL ISSUES IN TRIRATNA
For many years, ethical issues from Triratna’s past have affected the individuals who were involved and the Triratna Buddhist Order and Community as a whole, and a number of people have come forward with accounts of the suffering they experienced within Triratna. Some of these issues involved the sexual behaviour of Sangharakshita, Triratna’s founder.
The task of the Adhisthana Kula was to address these issues honestly. We investigated what had happened, inviting people to share their experiences, especially those who were directly affected; and we worked with others to create fresh structures that could address past difficulties and help prevent future problems.
As the Adhisthana Kula concludes its work in 2020, this site shares its findings and reports on progress. For all our efforts, we wish to acknowledge the wounds that have not yet healed, the stories that have not yet been told and the pain that has not yet been recognised. This is a report on unfinished business, and we suggest how this work can be taken forward in the future.
INTRODUCING THE REPORT
A covering letter from the Kula, introducing and summarising the report. The report is divided into six main sections and also includes a suggestion for next steps, and a list of documents and resources relevant to the issues addressed here. You can navigate the sections by following the links below or via the main menu; or, download the report as a PDF.
1/ APOLOGY + REGRET
Wanting to express deeply-felt sadness and regret at suffering that has resulted from involvement in Triratna and recognising the need for a clear statement representing Triratna’s current position, the Adhisthana Kula issued a Message of Apology and Regret.
2/ SANGHARAKSHITA’s SEXUAL ACTIVITY
Reviewing criticisms of Sangharakshita’s behaviour.
3/ UNHELPFUL ATTITUDES AND IDEAS
Reviewing past ideas and attitudes in Triratna, concerning sex, gender and lifestyle, that have left a legacy of pain and distrust.
4/ SANGHARAKSHITA’S PLACE IN TRIRATNA
In light of its criticisms of Sangharakshita’s sexual behaviour, the Adhisthana Kula reviewed his continuing role within Triratna.
5/ ADDRESSING ETHICAL CONCERNS TODAY
Ensuring that Triratna’s culture and practices protect everyone: including ethical guidelines for teachers at Triratna centres and people conducting ordinations; and safeguarding policies for Triratna centres and retreat centres and procedures for addressing ethical misconduct in the Order.
6/ RESTORATIVE PROCESSES
A new system of Restorative Processes to address difficulties and conflicts within Triratna, both those stemming from the past and others arising in the present.
7/ NEXT STEPS
Suggestions for how this work can be carried forward.
8/ DOCUMENTS AND RESOURCES
A listing of what has been said about these topics. Valuing transparency and welcoming all voices, it includes both supportive and critical comments.