I am currently in counselling regarding my exit from this group and I can’t describe to you how difficult this is and i know of many people who have been emotionally damaged in a severe way from their experiences.Itis a cause of great sadness to me and many others that this group has grown at such a rate in ireland and that little attention is shone on the fact that its founder and main guru has a past and present that is worth exploring.
The expedition he proposed was a challenging two-week pack trip, starting at his isolated camp west of Lake Hovsgol, in a valley where the grasslands rise up to meet the taiga (alpine forests).
From there we would ride to a Tsaatan encampment of tepees and hook up with a shaman and several hunters, then head off into a shadowy world inhabited by bear, elk, moose, and wolves... Only the shaman would know the way, and he'd have to divine our route to avoid hazards.
The lawless wilderness, whose name loosely translates as "Red Forest," sprawls along the northwestern frontier with Russian Tuva.
Although it was once freely traversed by migratory Tsaatan reindeer herders, who foraged and hunted and grazed their animals there (and dabbled in a little horse rustling and smuggling themselves), Mongolian authorities booted everyone about 30 years ago and declared the region off-limits except by special permit.
About two years ago, President Mc Aleese visited the main Rigpa centre in Cork and met with the Tibetan Buddhist master Sogyal Rinpoche, at the centre of this controversy, this featured in the Sunday Times article below.
Garde can be contacted at XXXXXXXXXXXXXXX or XXXXXXXXXXXX Mary Finnegan at XXXXXXXXXXXXXX or XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX I understand that Inform based at the London School of Economics also featured a speaker a few years at a confernece about experiences in Rigpa.
Criminal gangs in Tuva couldn't have cared less, and their cross-border raids have persisted.
Today the Tsaatan's ancestral homeland—as much a physical realm as a parallel spirit world known to shamans as "the Dark Heavens"—is a perilous no-man's-land where shootouts between mounted rangers and Tuvan desperadoes occur regularly, particularly along a notorious trail that intersects the border at a sacred mountain called Uma Tolgoi. We would be a large team of 23 people and 38 horses under the leadership of Hamid Sardar-Afkhami, a rakish 44-year-old Iranian-American scholar and documentary filmmaker who divides his time between Mongolia and Paris.
He could be a model for Indiana Jones, right down to his beat-up Stetson fedora. Sardar's explorations have taken him to the far corners of Tibet and Mongolia to investigate occult mysteries of Central Asia's supernatural landscapes.