The Dalai Lama appeared onstage with Clare and Sara Bronfman on May 6, 2009, at the Palace Theatre in Albany, NY.
Nixvm leader Keith Raniere was in the audience and went on stage to be greeted by the Dalai Lama after the lecture.
HBO’s 9-part docuseries, The Vow, takes us behind the scenes to show what transpired in part to get the Dalai Lama to come to Albany and lecture for a largely Nxivm audience.
In 2016, two years before Raniere was arrested, I broke the story of how the Dalai Lama received a sizeable appearance fee for coming to Albany. Raniere and the Bronfmans try to buy the Dalai Lama
When I was working as a consultant for Nxivm, I was informed that the Seagram’s heiresses Clare and Sara Bronfman offered the Dalai Lama the sum of $1 million to make his appearance.
The Dalai Lama at first consented to appear for a four-day visit and to join Raniere in a number of public activities in Albany. This sparked a great deal of controversy. The Albany Times Union found it newsworthy that the Dalai Lama would agree to appear with the Capitol Region’s notorious local cult and it caused an uproar.
The Dalai Lama canceled his appearance.
Keith Raniere, Nancy Salzman and Clare Bronfman rushed to Dharmsala, India, where the Dalai Lama lives in exile, to persuade him to change his mind.
Whether it was Raniere’s winning ways, or the promise of an additional donation by the Bronfman sisters, the Dalai Lama was persuaded to come to Albany. He consented to make a single appearance for a lecture.
After his appearance, Nxivm used this fact in their promotions and recruitment efforts, saying the Dalai Lama endorsed Nxivm and Raniere.
This has become part of the narrative about Nxivm and the Dalai Lama – and is sometimes used to impugn the Dalai Lama.
It not entirely fair or true.
Of course, the Dalai Lama took the donation. He shares a common enemy with the US – the Communist Chinese government. He has to maintain what is left of the Tibetan government, of which he is the secular and religious leader and has to maintain his monastic followers, and against a constant campaign by the Chinese government to destroy him and subsume Tibet in spirit as they have done with their land.
The survival of a Tibet in exile costs millions per year.
But the Dalai Lama did not endorse Raniere.
In their motion for bail for Raniere, back in 2018, his attorneys told the judge that “Raniere is an ethicist. His ethical teachings, which have focused on raising the level of humanity within each person, have been a source of help and inspiration to thousands of people. He has been recognized by no less than the Dalai Lama.”
Contrary to what his attorneys claimed, the Dalai Lama did not really recognize Raniere in a favorable light.
The Dalai Lama appeared in Albany, on May 6, 2009, at the request and at the expense of Clare and Sara Bronfman.
He spoke before a mainly NXIVM audience of about 2500 people.
See video of the Dalai Lama’s entire lecture
He discusses Keith Raniere and Nxivm at 44:00 minutes into his lecture.
See the video of the Dalai Lama talking about Nxivm and Raniere.
The following is the transcript of the Dalai Lama “recognizing” Raniere. [My comments and clarifications are in bold and brackets]:
The Dalai Lama was asked a question as to why he canceled his original trip to Albany.
Dalai Lama: “Oh. Firstly I received an invitation [from the Bronfman/Nxivm to come to Albany] that, in principle, I accepted. Then I received some request that I should not go there because of this [Raniere/NXIVM] is controversial; some allegations. [The allegations came out in news stories in the Albany Times Union and elsewhere].
“Then we carry further investigation. Then, finally, including this organization’s teacher [Raniere], and his, some friend, [Nancy Salzman and Sara Bronfman] came to see me in Dharamsala and I discuss, I observe, basically, they are carrying some kind of movement about ethics.
“Then, as I mentioned earlier, it is my moral responsibility to support any movement by any person who carry, who are working for ethics. Because in today’s world many problems essentially [are] our own creation. Nobody want[s] more problems, but due to lack of ethics, lack of principle, this unwanted manmade problems happen. Whether politician, whether businessman, whether a religious person, whether anyone, moral principle is very essential – like backbone.
“So, therefore, I felt, I feel it is my moral responsibility, but, at the same time, these allegations [against Raniere existed].
“So when I met them personally in Dharamsala, I told them very friendly, very openly, ‘As far your sort of work for promotion of ethics, I fully support. Is my moral responsibility, but, at the same time, those allegations [against Nxivm] you must make very clear. If you have done something wrong, you must accept, you must admit, and change, make correction. If you [have] not done [anything wrong], make clear all these allegations, truthfully, honestly, openly, transparently.
“Then some media – I [am] always telling media people, ‘media people should have long nose, as long as–
[At this point the Dalai Lama was interrupted by the NXIVM audience who burst into laugher and applause. They thought the Dalai Lama was criticizing the media, calling the media liars – when he said ‘long nose’ of the media – they assumed he meant as in Pinocchio. Nxivm was not friendly with the media. But, as we shall see, that’s not what the Dalai Lama meant.]
“Wait, wait, wait [applause dies down]. As long as an elephant nose, and smell, in the front and behind. That’s very important. And [the media should] make clear to the public what’s going on. Whether with the politician or with the mayor [Albany Mayor Jennings was onstage with him] or religion’s people, the bishop [RC Bishop Hubbard was onstage with him] or myself, [the media] must sort of watch and make clear, and inform public, provided it must be very honest, unbiased, objective, that’s important. Sometimes, say, one company financing a newspaper – then newspaper report [is] a little bit biased. I think not as biased as Chinese propaganda. But sometimes you see a little sort of biased sort of version also is happening. That must be avoided, must be honest, truthful.
“So, now I think in front of, I think the public, I want to to tell the media people, ‘please carry continuously, all these spots where you have some doubt [including about NXIVM, carry out a] thorough investigation.
“And those concerned people’s side [Raniere and NXIVM] ‘Also make clear. All your work must be transparent.
“So, that’s my view. So, I feel, no problem, come here, meet people, and talk. Because of some criticism [of NXIVM] remain distance? Not much use. Come face to face and talk, friendly, bluntly. Truth always win. So, more talk, more investigation [into NXIVM], truth will become more clear clear, clear, like that. So, that’s my answer.” [applause].
Of course, it is not the Dalai Lama’s fault that Raniere was not transparent.
The media investigated, including myself. And some eight years later I broke the branding and blackmail story which led to the mainstream media doing a lot of reporting on the matter.
I will leave it to the reader to ascertain whether Raniere’s DOS program pubic branding and his collection of blackmail material on women members is in consonance with the Dalai Lama’s recognition of him.
Yes, the Dalai Lama recognized him and, in time, truth became clear, clear, clear.
tibet was like 90% indentured servitude before communist china came by and freed them but the dalai lama knows all that I’m sure
In Buddhist traditions the acceptance of gifts by a monk authorizes the donor and his power. Here it was 1 million dollar from a psychopathic cult leader branding women. Franks article intends to repair the damaged reputation of HH The Dalia Lama. But he and Raniere know very well that this stage-show was seen as great support for Raniere by the audience, regardless of some words like “your work must be transparent” – which he could address on himself. With no word Frank is mentioning that this is Dalai Lama’s case number two after he signed a letter recognizing the psychopatic mass murder Shoko Asahara as “great buddhist leader”. In a second article Frank is questioning wheather the foreword of Ranier’s book by the Dalai Lama was written by him personally or some of his staff members. This is every day whitewashing of politicians in case of emergency, here in robes, who did not know, did not act and did not sign but their staff members.
I remember this event. It was most memorable at the introduction, when Vantard and his gang all stood up and proclaimed…
“Hello, Dalai, yes Hello Dalai!”
Tricked up “Testimonials” is a NXIVM specialty going back the days Eddie Albert proclaimed Keith to be a genius boy wonder or something in CBI promo ads on to Edgar Bronfman Sr.’s alleged endorsement of ESP as a cure for erectile dysfunction, to Richard Branson’s celebrity appearance at a NX function held on his Island, etc. Nancy Salzman drug a lot of big name endorsements through the muck NXIVM-style. They hard target, link the names to themselves by hook or crook, ensnare and entangle their reputations — sometimes through sextortion or some illegally obtained “collateral,” sometimes just through trickery (they know the loopholes to manipulate) — and, in the case of the Dalai Lama, it was a 10 year project before the Bronfman’s ever showed up, that cost my sister her life.
Even after Gina (and Kris Snyder’s) rather sacrificial passing they may have distorted her death to continue pursuing the Dalai Lama’s “endorsement” which, as you point out, was more of a message to the Media and public to seek “transparency” or exposure when it came to NXIVM and it’s criminal leaders and activities.
The Dalai Lama is challenged and charged with spreading his message to help his people and all sentient beings, despite these obstacles. That’s what he did in Albany.
The message may have been ignored, twisted or misused but some, The Albany Times Union for one, got it and acted on it to the extent any of us could.
What blows my mind is that they’re still at it taking aim at Rockefeller’s and assorted successful celebrity murderers, now. Still. …Procrastination has always been an “issue” with Keith. Not lacking for determination, however. Or funding. Or suckers.
Who attacks the media the most? Donald Trump. And he is not using hydroxychloroquine to not die from COVID. That was a lie. Why does Frank Report, which has done so much good, not see that Trump is, like Raniere, a sociopath? Sure Hillary was corrupt. But no one is more corrupt or more incompetent or a bigger moron than Trump.
Who deserves being attacked the most? The media. LOL
Was Trump taking HCQ so he wouldn’t die from malaria? LOL
Frank doesn’t see Trump as a sociopath because he isn’t one. LOL
Thanks for admitting Hillary THE Horrible is corrupt, and so is Biden. LOL
What has Trump done that is corrupt? LOL
How is Trump incompetent? LOL
How is Trump a moron? LOL
We would be at war with Syria, for sure, with Hillary, and most likely with Iran. While I am not a Donald Trump fan, and while I didn’t vote for either sociopath, more disastrous wars would have been catastrophic not only for the United States but for the world. And before you say, look what Trump did with COVID. I agree. He’s Covidiot-in-chief, but I think two new wars would have possibly started a wider regional war and/or a world war. And now, we have two corrupt candidates and each side says the other side is more corrupt. Again, I won’t vote for either corrupt candidate. One seems to be suffering initial stages of some form of dementia. The other is a habitual liar, an alleged rapist, and a consummate New York grifter. I refuse to vote for corruption, whether it’s Hillary, Joe or Donald. Our presidential election this year is a laughingstock, especially after the disastrous debate, where both lowered themselves to the gutter, although Trump went down to the sewer. A pox on both corrupt parties that are not deserving of any votes. Just my opinion.
Raniere’s lawyers didn’t say the Dalai Lama recognized him in a favorable manner – would you recognize a picture of Adolf Hitler? LOL
It’s all just legal word salad and a photo op to tell a story quite different than the full story and I’m quite sure the judge isn’t taking the bait. LOL
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Me thinks you give the Dalai too much of a pass. He took Bronfman money – $1 million for a couple of hours work. Not too shabby. He’s savvy enough to immunize the cult money with all the cautions, just in case Nxivm comes back to haunt him.
$1 mill buys you an appearance but not an endorsement, except by association. You can see how they were so desperate to get him. Vanguard was so disgustingly dirty, he didn’t even shower before meeting this guy.
The Bronfman girls appear always so desperate – for purpose, love, legitimacy. It’s their malice in lashing out with cruelty and lawsuits when they can’t get what they want that makes them so pathetic and detestable.
Frank- great work on this over the years.
When photos were published here of that swift visit to Dharmsala, two things stood out, as pictures speaking a thousand words. One was Nancy Salzman’s behavior, trying so hard to conceal her very own consciousness from the Dalai Lama. Her facial expressions were almost similarly transparent. Outstanding. She looked afraid of being SEEN. She was putting on an act.
The Dalai Lama probably didn’t feel a sense of attraction to decipher just what Nancy Salzman was trying to hide in front of him. When seeing someone behave like Nancy was, that in itself tells the observer a whole lot.
Then there was the vibe out of Keith Raniere like a swamp, the fetid, squalid stench of one who evidently perceives his own identity as fine and dandy, by cracky. Never mind what Raniere was really saying and doing, that Flabturd is just crazy about himself. Or he was. Fixated.
Oh, and Sara Bronfman just oozed bovine twaddlebrain. Mooooo. Cash cow. Moooooo
” Her facial expressions were almost simianly transparent.” Like an ape is what I meant, not “similarly.” Maybe that is not a recognizable adverb for Otto Check? Go away, Otto.
Nancy was acting like an obsequious squirrel monkey who had her hand out but did not want to be forced to pass any inspection whatsoever, nervous that she could be seen for what she is.
Sometimes she had her mouth clamped down, as if to prevent her fartbreath from leaking out into the Dalai Lama’s sniffing range. But more than likely, Nancy Salzman failed to impress anyone but herself. It is not difficult to see her coming. And certainly, this does not refer to any of her dental blowjobs, but to her character.
Tell me if I’m wrong, please. I’ve noticed many long term members have weird facial muscles, often lopsided. Some look like they’re screaming while they’re smiling big fake smiles. I’ve also noticed the laugh track precision in response to Keith. All of the above are unsettling without hearing or reading a word.