Shocking Footage from Tibet

March 20th, 2009 § 5

The Tibetan government-in-exile just released this shocking footage smuggled out from Tibet. It is awful. I sat at my desk and cried while I watched it. The Chinese government doesn’t see Tibetans as human beings. They never have.

WARNING: This video includes extremely graphic footage.

Click here to watch the video.

We’ve heard so many accounts about the terrible violence the authorities have used against Tibetans in the past year, but this is the first video footage that has made it out. It’s very hard to watch, but it is our truth and nothing China does can hide this from the world.

Here’s Students for a Free Tibet’s statement in response to the footage.

More protests in Tibet

March 1st, 2009 § 4

Sey monastery in Ngaba in Tibet

Sey monastery in Ngaba in Tibet

It just doesn’t stop.

I got a call early this afternoon from a Tibetan with an eyewitness account of another protest at a monastery in Amdo, Ngaba (Aba). This monastery is just a few kilometers away from Kirti monastery where the other protest took place on the 27th. It took all day to piece the following story together:

This morning hundreds of monks at Sey monastery managed to gain entry into the monastery’s main prayer hall by saying that they had to get their belongings from inside. Once inside they sat down and began the Monlam Chenmo (New Year prayer ceremony) even though the monasteries have been ordered not to hold any religious gatherings in the month of March. They are not even supposed to open up the prayer halls. » Read the rest of this entry «

Video from the Lama Temple

August 5th, 2007 § 19

My previous post covered my visit to the Lama Temple. I’ve now got a video posted, so you can experience this “museum” more fully yourself.

[youtube zEAtcRoEPRw]

You can see this in the middle of this video, but here’s a transcript of what I overheard the tour guide say about the Dalai Lama, and my question to him.

Tour Guide (to group of foreign tourists):
“They are all Buddhas, so they will never die. When their body dies, we will be left another young boy who will be the next Dalai lama. After this Dalia Lama dies, we will have another Dalai Lama. The present Dalai Lama, he is living in India Because in 1950 when this Dalai Lama was young, 30, he wanted to separate Tibet out of China and this kind of behavior makes the official government quite angry. Then he escaped out of Tibet.

Now Dalai Lama is getting old. So of course he is thinking about his next life, the next Dalai Lama. He wants to select his next one. Of course he cannot select where he will live. He knows when he passes, maybe without the permission of central government of China, maybe he cannot get re-life… so this is his problem so he is getting much closer relationship now with Central Government”

Me (Lhadon): so is it that the Dalai Lama needs permission from the central government to be reborn?

Tour Guide: Yes, yes.

Me (Lhadon): But isn’t the Communist party atheist. There is no religion right?

Tour Guide: Its not a problem with religion. Dalai Lama still has lots of followers that want separate for Tibet. But Dalai Lama himself and Tibetan people want Dalai Lama to be back because he is from Tibet.

Day 5 – Lama Temple and Religious Freedom

August 5th, 2007 § 6

Paul and I visited the “Lama Temple” today, a Tibetan Buddhist temple and monastery right in the heart of Beijing. Strange, right? Well it has a long history going back to the Qing dynasty, when some Manchu emperors became spiritual students of the Dalai Lamas. It was shuttered for many years after the Communists came to power (reopened in 1980), and supposedly saved from destruction during the Cultural Revolution only by the intervention of Zhou Enlai himself.

It’s hard to go to the Lama Temple without thinking of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the Panchen Lama. We witnessed this firsthand today when we entered one of the first buildings in the temple complex and stumbled upon a group of foreign tourists asking their Chinese guide about the situation concerning the Dalai Lama. The guide hesitated for a second and said, “Oh, there are two great teachers in the Gelugpa tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. One is the Dalai Lama and the other is the Panchen Lama.” But this answer didn’t satisfy the group.

One man clarified the question, “No, what is the problem between the Dalai Lama and China that we hear about?” So the guide, feeling very uncomfortable, went on to say that the Dalai Lama “wanted to separate Tibet out of China and this kind of behavior makes the official government quite angry” and how he now lives in exile in India, adding that “now Dalai Lama is getting old, so of course he is thinking about his next life” but that “without the permission of central government of China, maybe he cannot get re-life.” Uh… okay.


Is there anything more ridiculous than the officially atheist Chinese Communist Party leadership, infamous for denouncing religion as poison, playing a role in choosing the reincarnations of Buddhist teachers?

In 1995 the Chinese authorities intervened in the selection of the 11th Panchen Lama and replaced the 6 year old boy approved by the Dalai Lama with their own candidate. They trot this boy out on national television on certain occasions, while the real Panchen Lama, now 18 years old, remains under house arrest.

And then, a couple of days ago the Chinese government announced new rules that will require official approval for the selection of any reincarnated lama. There was an article in the August 4th Telegraph newspaper (UK): China demands veto on Tibet’s ‘living buddhas’.

Richard Spencer writes: “In a striking display of Beijing’s determination to tighten control over Tibet, a 14-chapter notice published by the state religious affairs bureau set out “approval procedures” for new living buddhas and said monasteries that did not follow them would be punished.”

So this is the improved human rights situation that the 2008 Olympics is helping to bring to China and Tibet? Just one year before the Games begin, the Chinese leadership is cracking down in Tibet, all the while proclaiming that China shares “One World One Dream” with the rest of us.

From inside the belly of the beast we demand a free and independent Tibet. For Ronggay A’drak, the Tibetan nomad from Lithang, who was arrested for leading a protest during the recent Lithang Horse Festival in eastern Tibet. For Tenzin Delek Rinpoche who is serving a life sentence for being nothing but a champion of Tibetan rights. For the Panchen Lama who has lived most of his life under house arrest. For the 14 Tibetans on hunger strike in New Delhi. For all Tibetans living under occupation or in exile, separated from their loved ones and condemned to wander as strangers in foreign lands. And finally, for future generations of Tibetan children who must know what it is like to live in freedom in their own nation.

Bhoe Rangzen.

The Song on Reaching the Mountain Peak

August 1st, 2007 § 1

Hearken, my sons! If you want
To climb the mountain peak
You should hold the Self-mind’s light,
Tie it with a great “Knot,”
And catch it with a firm “Hook.”
If you practice thus
You can climb the mountain peak
To enjoy the view.

Come, you gifted men and women,
Drink the brew of Experience!
Come “inside” to enjoy the scene –
See it and enjoy it to the full!
The Incapable remain outside;
Those who cannot drink pure
Beer may quaff small beer.
He who cannot strive for Bodhi,
Should strive for superior birth.

- Milarepa

Thanks to

Where Am I?

You are currently browsing the Religion category at Beijing Wide Open.