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Historically, although some Buddhist saints have acted with strange modes of ethical conduct, they were fully realized beings and knew what was of long-term benefit to others.But nowadays, such conduct is harmful to the Dharma and must be stopped.

and in the tantras.¹ In the past teachers were not appointed.

Rather, through diligent training a person became a good practitioner.

Each Buddhist center could make available the requirements for the various levels of teachers and instruct people how to select teachers.

As I always emphasize, in the beginning one should consider the person explaining the Dharma not as a guru, but as a Dharma friend.

But in modern times the word “teacher” reminds us of someone in an academic field who, after completing certain requirements, is appointed as a teacher by an organization, whether or not that person has any students.

In the future, perhaps Buddhists could form an organization to certify people as teachers after examining their Dharma understanding as well as their conduct.

Now, with comparatively more freedom, there is a revival, but here too some people are taking advantage of the situation.

In Lhasa there are some men who in the morning dress like monks and do puja for those who pay, but in the afternoon they get drunk and even steal.

If others came and asked that person to teach, he or she taught those few students.

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