‘Democratic’ Tibetan leaders want to downplay consulting dangerous spirit Nechung for everything

Only in the Tibetan leadership does the head of government pay obeisance to, and take advice from formless deities who cannot be held accountable for what they say. In this image, the Tibetan Prime Minister Lobsang Sangay bows to Nechung. Nowhere else in the world will any democratic leader or head of state rely so heavily on an unseen being or spirit. And it seems the Tibetan leadership knows this, as is reflected in their inconsistent relationship with spirit Nechung.

The opinion piece below was sent to dorjeshugden.com for publication. We accept submissions from the public, please send in your articles to [email protected].

 


 

By: Shashi Kei

As the old adage goes, it takes two hands to clap and therefore when examining the failures of the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA; based in Dharamsala, North India), it is merely due diligence to examine their closest advisors too and one of the Tibetan leadership’s closest advisors is the spirit Nechung. Nechung is the common name for the State Oracle of Tibet who takes trance of a deity Pehar and / or Pehar’s spirit-ministers.

In relying on Nechung, what we see is a totally unprecedented situation not witnessed anywhere else in the world. In this instance, a so-called democratically-elected leadership relies heavily on an undemocratically-appointed Oracle to advice, guide, shape and influence the entire community’s and government’s policies. Those with even a passing, Hollywood-induced familiarity of Tibet will be aware of their leadership’s reliance on oracles for spiritual matters like identifying candidates for the next Dalai Lama.

On the one hand, the CTA claims they are a democratic government. On the other hand, they have a designated State Oracle. No other modern democratic nation has an oracle on retainer whom they invoke as a matter of tradition, to “consult on important matters”. (Source: http://tibet.net/2017/06/kashag-invokes-state-oracle-nechung-to-offer-obeisance/)

What they will be less familiar with is the depth of reliance from the Tibetan leadership on all matters political. If people assume that the Tibetan leadership’s reliance on Nechung for political decisions is just a one-off, they could not be further from the truth. And yet, despite this immense reliance on the Nechung Oracle for both secular and spiritual advice, it has been proven time and again just what a dangerous folly it is to implement advice given by the Nechung Oracle.

 

The Unreliability of the Nechung Oracle

The Nechung Oracle is known for his long history of inaccurate proclamations, which include (but are not limited to):

  • Prescribing the wrong medication to the 13th Dalai Lama, which hastened his passing. In his book Portrait of the Dalai Lama which documents the life of the 13th Dalai Lama, Sir Charles Bell wrote, “On this occasion, the Nechung oracle said that the Dalai Lama should take a medicine known as “the seventeen heroes for subduing colds” (chamjom pawo chupdun) and himself prepared the medicine in a cup with water. Most respondents report that the Dalai Lama refused the dose and that the state oracle literally had to pour it into his mouth. The Dalai Lama’s condition immediately deteriorated, and by noon he was unconscious. He never said another word.” Because his advice resulted in this catastrophe, the deity Nechung was flogged while taking trance in the Oracle.
  • Giving disastrously wrong advice to the Tibetans during the 1904 British incursion into Tibet. When an Expeditionary Force led by Lt. Col. Sir Francis Younghusband began to advance on Central Tibet after failed negotiations, the Nechung Oracle duly proclaimed that the British Army would reach Central Tibet. He then predicted that the Tibetan army would be victorious. True to his prediction, the British did arrive in Lhasa but unlike in his prophecy, they easily defeated the poorly-equipped Tibetans. The result was the Dalai Lama fleeing Tibet’s capital city, Lhasa, along with the Nechung Oracle. Upon his return when the British had departed, the Nechung Oracle was summarily dismissed from his position as the State Oracle.
  • Wrongly and dangerously advising His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama to remain in Tibet during the political turmoil of 1959. It was later discovered that there had been a plot to arrest and harm the Dalai Lama and many other religious leaders. Had Nechung’s advice been followed, it is likely that the 14th Dalai Lama would have been harmed. Instead, the Dalai Lama followed Dorje Shugden’s insistent advice that the Dalai Lama leave Tibet immediately for India. Dorje Shugden also specified the exact time and day of departure, the escape route, and also gave further instructions on what to do to ensure a successful escape. This entire incident was well-documented by the very people who accompanied the Dalai Lama on his escape into exile (see video below).


  • Time and again, Nechung has wrongly proclaimed that exiled Tibetans will return to their homeland. He issued such proclamations in 1986, 1987, 1995, 1997 and 2012. The most recent incident involved an Indian girl, Sambhavi, who traveled to Dharamsala claiming to be an incarnation of a Hindu goddess. Her parents demanded a private audience with the Dalai Lama, claiming that the girl had a special message for him. In “trance”, she warned the Dalai Lama of health concerns and also gave an optimistic prediction that Tibetans would return to Tibet in 2012. The incident was covered by Al-Jazeera news network and French Channel 5. To verify the girl’s claims, the Nechung Oracle was invoked and the deity duly concurred with the girl’s predictions. One of the Oracle’s assistants was even filmed (see video below) saying that when the Dalai Lama returned to Tibet at the appointed time, people would be so overjoyed that they would die. Instead, 2012 came and went and nothing happened.


  • Last but not least, Nechung has wrongly advised the Dalai Lama and Tibetan government to ban Dorje Shugden’s practice, the single most divisive policy of the CTA due to the large percentage of people affected (seeing that the Gelugpa is the largest Tibetan Buddhist sect). It was in 1996 that the Dalai Lama announced the worship of Dorje Shugden was banned and that his oracle, Nechung, had adviced him that the deity was a threat to his personal safety and the future of Tibet.

Given these incidents, it is unsurprising that there is so much doubt surrounding Nechung’s trances. For example, the illogical basis of the Dorje Shugden ban – that Shugden practice will harm the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan cause – has made people question the Oracle’s motivation.

When Nechung first entered into exile, he became aware of the Dalai Lama’s growing affinity with Dorje Shugden. Thus in the 1990s, he entered trance and proclaimed that if the Dalai Lama were to receive sogtae (life entrustment) of Dorje Shugden, it would anger the Buddha Palden Lhamo and would be detrimental to the cause of Tibet – never mind the fact that Palden Lhamo is enlightened and cannot be angered by anything, let alone the practice of another enlightened being like Dorje Shugden.

The Tibetan leadership, already worried about Tibet and suitably panicked by this prophecy of doom, promptly issued a ban on the practice of Dorje Shugden. In casting doubt on Dorje Shugden’s practice, the Nechung Oracle had accomplished what he wanted. Without any ‘competing’ Oracles, the whole Tibetan leadership would have to rely on only him for prophecies and advice. The Nechung Oracle would henceforth be the only Oracle issuing instructions to the Tibetan leaders. This maneuver cemented his position and job and to this day, the Oracle is kept on somewhat of a retainer – as recently pointed out by the Tibetan Member of Parliament Tenpa Yarphel, it is a well-known fact that the Oracle’s salary and Nechung Monastery’s expenses are provided for by the CTA’s Department of Religion.


Therefore, it is not a new thing for the Nechung Oracle’s motivation to be called into question and in fact, the trances have themselves been problematic for a long time. For decades prior to the fall of Tibet, there had been doubts about exactly what deity was entering the Nechung Oracle. It is said that it was not actually the spirit Nechung entering the Oracle but a malevolent being by the name of Nyatrul. Nyatrul was a monastic official who had been brutally murdered by the Tibetan leadership, and he took a vow of revenge as he died. Since then, Nyatrul has been entering the Nechung Oracle to give inaccurate prophecies and create suffering and problems for the institution who had him killed.

That it is Nyatrul (and not Nechung) entering the Oracle is so well known that back in pre-1959 Tibet, when people heard their government was invoking Nechung, they would avoid going to the trances. They knew that Nyatrul was going to inhabit the Oracle and give inaccurate, damaging prophecies. However, if Drepung Monastery was invoking the trance, then the people would go and seek blessings. Nyatrul would not enter the Oracle at that time because it was not Drepung Monastery he wanted to seek revenge against.

Hence on all levels, it is clear that Nechung – both the deity and the Oracle – is unreliable. The clearest sign of this is the fact that he has, for many decades, given incredibly inaccurate prophecies and advice which has adversely affected the entire Tibetan population. The fact that Nechung has been proven to be unreliable is reflected in the CTA’s inconsistent relationship with both deity and oracle.

 

The Unreliability of the Tibetan Leadership

Up till today, Nechung is still taking trance primarily for the Tibetan leadership and the Dalai Lama. Yet throughout history, the Nechung Oracle’s relationship with the Tibetan leadership has been an unsteady, tenuous one at best. Therefore, despite this track record and Nechung’s long history of inaccurate prophecies, the fact the Tibetan leadership continue to promote his position within the government is downright illogical. It is almost as though they are setting their people up to fail, and to remain in exile as refugees in the long-term.

The hypocrisy of the leadership is staggering. On the one hand, the Tibetan leadership claims to be a modern democracy. On the other hand, they are recognized all over the world to heavily rely on oracles and deities to guide and shape their government’s policies. Those unfamiliar with the Tibetan political situation may wonder what kind of advice the Tibetan leadership receives from Nechung. The troubling answer is “everything”. Since going into exile, the Tibetan leadership has relied on Nechung to advice them on everything from the political position of Tibet, to how to deal with China, to the direction they should take for the welfare of their people.

It is one thing to rely on Nechung for spiritual advice, but to subject all Tibetans to Nechung’s political advice or force them to rely on the Buddhist tradition of oracles (when not all Tibetans are Buddhist), is downright undemocratic, unfair and unconstitutional.

It is one thing to rely on oracles for spiritual advice, but for the entire Tibetan leadership to be given political direction by unseen beings has no place in a modern democratic society. Amongst the Tibetans, there are many non-Buddhists, for example Tibetan Christians, Tibetan Muslims and Tibetan Bonpos, and all of them may not necessarily appreciate being told what to do by an unenlightened spirit. Why, therefore, are the Tibetan leadership subjecting all of their people to the prophecies of these beings? How come Tibetan Christians, Muslims and Bonpos are having their lives and their futures dictated by spirits like Nechung?

No other government in the world relies on oracles for their decision-making. Not even neighboring Bhutan, who is also Buddhist, relies on oracles for political decisions of the state. Truth be told, it may be one of the reasons why Bhutan remains independent and continues to flourish to this day.

 

Motivated by Money?

All of this begs the question – if Nechung is so unreliable and if his advice has not improved the Tibetan situation, and if there is no benefit in relying on him, then why even bother? The answer lies in the way in which the Tibetan government promote and talk about Nechung.

For Western audiences who appreciate the concepts of democracy, equality and political transparency, the Tibetan leadership will downplay Nechung’s role in their decision-making process. This is in stark contrast to their treatment of Nechung in the early days of their time in exile. Back then, the CTA were keen to highlight the more esoteric processes of their governance. It somehow made them special, different, compared to other refugees and it was this unique aspect of Shangri-la that appealed to many of their early supporters. Over time, having realized how much the wider community disapproved of their reliance on oracles for state decisions, the Tibetan leadership have worked hard to draw attention away from this fact.

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In the past, the Tibetan leadership’s own website had articles that spoke glowingly of Nechung, even referring to him as the Dalai Lama’s minister or a member of the Dalai Lama’s cabinet. These days, if you try to access those articles, you are met with an error of “Page Not Found”.

This is what happens when you go to the CTA’s official website to read about what the Dalai Lama said regarding Nechung. Why go through all the trouble of removing the article so completely from the Internet, if not because they wish to hide what it says? (Source: http://tibet.net/buddhism/nechung_hh.html)

The Tibetan leadership took great pains to delete all traces of these articles, and invested quite a bit of effort to distance themselves from these proclamations. Luckily, hard copies of this evidence continues to exist. In the July-August 1992 issue of the Tibetan Bulletin, a feature spread on Nechung was published. In it, the Dalai Lama was quoted as referring to Nechung as his cabinet minister. The Tibetan Bulletin is the Tibetan leadership’s own publication, and in the article Nechung was painted as someone as crucial and indispensable to the Dalai Lama as his publicly elected officials. You can click here to download a copy of the publication.

It is precisely this kind of promotion of Nechung which Westerners, who provide the bulk of the Tibetan leadership’s funding, are wary of. But it is this kind of promotion of Nechung which leads Tibetan audiences to follow Nechung’s prophecies unquestioningly.

The Tibetan leadership’s reliance on its State Oracles is encouraged by the Dalai Lama, who is frequently seen with them, thus legitimizing their status.

To Tibetan audiences, the Tibetan leadership boosts Nechung’s role, hinting that it is somehow bad karma to go against his prophecies. The Tibetan leadership works hard to draw a picture of closeness between the deity and the Dalai Lama. It is hardly surprising therefore, that the Tibetan leadership have been known to use Nechung’s proclamations to pursue their personal interests. The manipulation of Nechung’s position in Tibetan society is designed so that the wider public will ignore the government’s transgressions, and allow the leadership to justify their self-serving behaviors, all of which are designed to increase their bank balances.

After all, how can the public comment on any of the government’s decisions, when those decisions are being made by a formless being whom no one can hold accountable? Even more so when the Dalai Lama refers to Nechung as a member of his Cabinet or his Minister. It leads the Tibetan public to immediately assume that going against Nechung’s prophecies or questioning them, is akin to going against the Dalai Lama and questioning him, since monk and oracle are very close. Within Tibetan society, to be viewed as anti-Dalai Lama immediately invites violent retribution and repercussions. Just look at what happened to the member of Parliament Tenpa Yarphel when he questioned Nechung in the Tibetan Parliament. Since then, he has been labelled anti-Dalai Lama and anti-Tibet, and called all manner of vulgar names and profanities.

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On reviewing the situation, it is obvious that the Tibetan leadership’s changing treatment of Nechung is motivated by only one thing – MONEY. By changing how they refer to Nechung, they can placate donors from different backgrounds and therefore upkeep the financial support from happy sponsors flowing into their coffers.

 

Conclusion

Hand in hand with this unreliable and inconsistent government is their dependence on a deity who has been proven time and again to be unreliable. In light of this situation, what chances do the Tibetan people have of fulfilling their political goals?

In the 60 years since the Tibetans went into exile, their position has not improved. Aside from the Dalai Lama, there are no famous Tibetans or world renowned Tibetans. Tibetans as a whole are no closer to achieving their political aims, and continue to languish in exile waiting and hoping for a breakthrough with China. Dialogue with China has in fact stagnated, with no signs of resuming any time soon and none of the Tibetan leaders have shown any signs of being capable of reinitiating this dialogue.

All this while, in a clear example of misplaced trust, the Tibetan people pin their hopes on an unseen deity whose political advice is interpreted and disseminated by a leadership who have been shown to be motivated by self-benefit. Indeed, to analyze the Tibetan situation is to analyze a sorry state of affairs, one that is underwritten by greedy ambition. If the Tibetans do not want to spend the next 60 years lamenting their situation, all signs point to an urgent need for a new way of decision-making and perhaps even a new wave of decision-makers. It is the only way they will ever be able to break away from the failures of their past.

The Tibetan leadership are known to heavily rely on the advice of the State Oracles for their political decision-making. Seen here is the Tibetan Prime Minister Lobsang Sangay waiting to receive guidance from Nechung.

The State Oracles and their trances often take precedence at official events and state affairs, in front of thousands of Tibetans who witness the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan government receiving the oracles’ advice over and over again.

The Dalai Lama has such a close relationship with the oracles, and relies so heavily on the deities that he has even been pictured inviting them into his private quarters to take trance.

For decades, Tibetans have witnessed the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan leadership form a very close relationship with the oracles, whom they rely heavily upon for all matters political.

The Tibetan Prime Minister Lobsang Sangay is seated in the background, patiently waiting for an audience with Nechung

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17 total comments on this postSubmit yours
  1. Why does the Dalai Lama consult Nechung even for Muslim and Shugdenpa Tibetans concerns. Tibetan affairs covers all Tibetans and not just Buddhists. Muslim and Shugdenpa Tibetans don’t trust or believe in Nechung. The govt of Tibet should be secular and not religious because it is not fair to the non-Buddhist Tibetans as they are forced to listen to the spirit Nechung. 😖

  2. Lama say not to rely on ghost . Nechung is ghost so Tibet is loss cos Geden Phodrang ghost wrong

  3. Quite frankly I find this whole affair to be very disturbing. When I took up the cause for a Free Tibet, I did so with the understanding that I would be fighting for an oasis of democracy amidst a Red Sea of Communism. These days, it seems I am supporting a group of despots happy to abuse all means necessary to ensure they don’t fall far from their golden thrones and silver spoons. Why support a Free Tibet when I can support a Free Syria? In the time since Tibet fell under occupation, new nations have been born (East Timor?) and old ones have disappeared (Yugoslavia?), and Tibet is still nowhere. Maybe it is time for me to stop throwing my money down the proverbial black hole of Dharamsala’s insatiable hunger for free money.

  4. Tibet is a lost cause. The leadership is relying on a deity that has a history of wrong prophecies, not even mentioning that they are relying on an unseen deity. So, if they are a democracy, why rely on a deity to the point of threatening violence against anyone who questions him? Look at what happened to Tenpa Yarphel when he questioned the consultation of Nechung on political matters. The CTA are just enriching themselves.

    The assumption that Nyatrul is taking trance of the oracle instead of Pehar sounds very plausible. Why else would a deity supposed sworn by Guru Rinpoche to protect the dharma do so much mischief with the many false prophecies? Disconcerting, indeed.

  5. OMG, it is really strange that a Harvard graduate like Lobsang Sangay will depend on an unenlightened deity to teach him to do his work. Harvard is one of the top universities of the world that produces highly acclaimed people. What happened here with Lobsang Sangay. Was Harvard just part of the game to line his personal pockets and bank account.

    With proven inaccuracies to his prophecies, the Dalai Lama still proclaims Nechung as his minister. Such is the environment of competency at CTA, never need to show results nor be transparent in all their actions.

    How long must Tibetans suffer such leaders who care only for themselves and who cheats to benefit themselves leaving the Tibetans not a day better than 60years ago.

    Democracy does not work the way CTA does. Is there real democracy in Dharamsala.

  6. In corporate circles, big businesses when they need to make really big decisions or to streamline human resources they hire ‘consultants’ to do their dirty work. Consultants are paid a lot of money, and are convenient scape goats to take the blame if things do not turn out the way they have envisioned it.

    So Nechung is the consultant for the CTA, when good advice is dispensed, its everyone’s good works, when something turns awry, lets flog the Nechung Oracle etc etc.

    Nechung prophecies are indeed inaccurate, but still Nechung is a tool of the CTA, a tool that is being used without coercion or under any duress by the CTA. CTA is relying on Nechung willingly and for their own personal interests and objectives.

  7. I am sorry to say but this is all an act. The spirit that took trance into the Nechung oracle has been fooling the CTA and the Dalai Lama in a way with unreliable and inconsistent prophecies. It is a reflection on the CTA attitude and a result of their collective negative karma for decades. Nothing positive will come out of this relationship and the Tibetans can forget about fulfilling any of their political goals.

    It is really a combination of bad luck and inauspiciousness to be governed by a group of selfish and greedy CTA members who makes North Korea a better place to be in.

  8. How do we know for sure that the ‘spirit’ inside the Oracle is really Nechung or not? Since he had given so many false predictions and some very very bad advice including splitting monasteries, this ban on another’s religion, creating disunity between Tibetans and making it even harder for a chance for Tibet autonomy. So why do they still continue to rely on this so-called spirit??? Why not rely on an enlightened oracle/protector like Setrap?

  9. 😅 so sorry to say, CTA & Nechung, 60 passed already, the Tibetans at India was totally No progress No improve, but become more worse, how many times the CTA rely on Nechung advises…….. but noting change, deep of my thought, maybe if the CTA rely on Dorje Shugden advises… today the Tibetans will become more better 🕯🕯🕯🕯🕯🕯🕯

  10. One thing I do not understand is – what is the reasons that the CTA keep rely on Nechung?

    It was in the records that Nechung had been given wrong prophecies and advises to the Tibetans and even cause the death of 13th Dalai Lama. In norms, if some one give you wrong advise, and cause you great harm, you will definitely change the advisors, but, why not CTA?!

    What is wrong with CTA?
    1. Using a spirit to made political decision
    2. Using a spirit advice that causes the death of 13th Dalai Lama
    3. Using a spirit that been dismiss by the Dalai Lama before
    4. Using a spirit that causes the Tibetans fall in great dangers

    what is wrong with CTA?
    1. Ban Dorje Shugden who is the emanation of Manjushri
    2. Ban Dorje Shugden who is the lineage holder
    3. Ban Dorje Shugden who has save the 14th Dalai Lama
    4. Ban Dorje Shugnde who is practices by many highly attained master e.g: H.H Trijang Rinpoche, H.H Zong Rinpoche etc

    The only answer- CTA want more money.
    😠😔

  11. Even if I am tibetan I wont rely on Nechung. Why would I ask advice from an UNenlightened being and to make it worse he gives wrong advice.If indeed it’s nyatrul then I think it’s worse. Does this mean the learned lamas don’t know? Conclusion is it’s very confusing when a govt follow advice of Nechung and can’t make their own decision when so many times it proved that it’s wrong. After 60 years with no result still want to believe in Nechung? CTA really incapable of doing anything except take more money from sponsors with lies, lies and more lies. If nyatrul is having his revenge then good luck to CTA. Have fun reaping what you sowed.

  12. This is very strange.

    If Nechung had been dismissed as the state oracle due to giving wrong advice that resulted in the failing of Lhasa in the turn of the 20th century, why is Nechung still giving advice on the medicine for the Dalai Lama and even be allowed to feed the 13th Dalai Lama the medicine that eventually killed him (almost immediately)? People around Dalai Lama seemed to be very careless in protecting His Holiness.

    Again, misfortunate caused by Nechung is happening to the 14th Dalai Lama. in 1959, Nechung was caught giving wrong advice to the Dalai Lama, who was saved by the clairvoyance Trijang Rinpoche who sent his assistant to consult Dorje Shugden who gave the correct advice. Yet, Nechung is allowed to continue his service as state oracle and perpetuate wrong advice making a fool of the Dalai Lama on international television, Al-Jazeera?

    As if all these were not harmful enough for His Holiness, Nechung was allowed to advice against Dorje Shugden, who is an enlightened Dharma Protector. How could an UNENLIGHTENED dharma protector like Nechung be qualified to prophesized feud between ENLIGHTENED dharma protectors like Dorje Shugden and Palden Lhamo?

    Therefore, from all these facts, it is not difficult to see that the Tibetan people around Dalai Lama do not have the best interest of Dalai Lama at heart. I beg that the people serving and advising Dalai Lama must be wise and unbias so that they will not create havoc in the name of Dalai Lama unknowingly (or knowingly)!

  13. Check out this news!!!!🙄😱

    Dharamshala Tibetan Settlement Officer appeals for peace

    By Lobsang Wangyal
    McLEOD GANJ, India, 14 November 2017

    Sensing the momentum gathering around a mass demonstration in Dharamshala against Kashag’s continuous silence over its decision to sack Penpa Tsering as the representative of His Holiness the Dalai Lama in North America, the Tibetan Settlement Officer in Dharamshala has issued an appeal to the people to maintain peace and harmony.

    Calls for a demonstration were made after the Kashag (Cabinet of the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA) ) refused to divulge details of the reason for expelling Representative Penpa Tsering.

    Kashag issued an announcement about the termination of Penpa Tsering’s duties through their website on 7 November, stating that he will end his duty on 30 November, and the current CTA Education Minister Ngodup Tsering will replace him.

    The Kashag stated “dereliction of duty” as the reason, and said that three warnings had been served, but that Penpa Tsering didn’t show any improvement in his conduct.

    The actual nature of the warnings was also not clear when the officiating President of the CTA convened a press conference on 9 November.

    Penpa Tsering on the other hand denied any wrongdoing.

    Settlement Officer Dawa Rinchen said in his appeal message that since Dharamshala being the seat of the Dalai Lama and of the Central Tibetan Administration, he urged people to respect the sanctity of the place.

    Speaking to Tibet Sun, Rinchen said that he envisaged a demonstration on the 27th of this month, but couldn’t have any estimate of its size.

    The 27th came to be the date for demonstration after an activist in NYC suggested it through his article published on Tibet Sun.

    He said, ”There’s so much talk and discussion about the issue and preparations for the protest. Many people are seen registering and others giving donations towards this event.”

    President of CTA Lobsang Sangay, who is on a European tour, spoke on 13 November about the issue in Norway, but he also refused to give details as to why Penpa Tsering was suspended.

    He said that it is the prerogative of the Kashag to appoint and terminate representatives and staff members of CTA. Kashag is not required to explain the reasons for their termination.

    Some Tibetans in the United States are saying they would stop paying the annual tax to CTA (record maintained through the “Green Book”), and people in New York are calling for a boycott of an event in New York on 10 December, the Tibetan Rally for Peace and Non-violence, which is to be attended by CTA President Lobsang Sangay and Speaker of the Tibetan Parliament-in-exile Khenpo Sonam Tenphel. It is to be held at United Nations Plaza, led by North American Chithues and is organised by North American Tibetan Associations.

    However, Penpa Tsering has appealed in a video message to people in New York City and nearby areas to attend the event.

    Source: https://www.tibetsun.com/news/2017/11/14/dharamshala-tibetan-settlement-officer-appeals-for-peace

    ____________________________________________________

    Tibetan unity in peril: Call for massive street protest in Dharamshala

    By Mila Rangzen
    NEW YORK CITY, US, 11 November 2017

    Like most Tibetans, including those who voted for Sikyong Lobsang Sangay in the 2016 election, I am shocked by what Sikyong Lobsang Sangay did to former speaker Penpa Tsering — the Dalai Lama’s Chief Representative posted in Washington DC. He fired Penpa Tsering a few days ago for no reason other than political revenge.

    Penpa Tsering was Lobsang Sangay’s opponent in the 2016 Sikyong election, and a tough one at that. Penpa Tsering is the only Tibetan statesman who can stand up to Lobsang Sangay and speak the truth to his face for the good of our cause and our community as a whole.

    Stand up he did, in and outside the Parliament. With humility but firmly. Roughly twenty-eight thousand Tibetans in our small exile community voted for him.

    Recognizing Penpa Tsering’s capability, experience, and integrity, the Dalai Lama’s private office recommended Penpa Tsering as the right man for the Representative job. Sikyong had no choice but to relent. Also, to appear to be burying the election grudge and the regional hatchet, that was the best bet he had. No need to point out that Lobsang Sangay is a Khampa man and Penpa Tsering is an Amdo/U-Tsang man. Track the source of the conflict. It will help the reader understand the Tibetan domestic politics. To turn a blind eye because it makes you feel uncomfortable is, in fact, an endorsement for negative regionalism to continue.

    When the media asked for elaboration on why Sikyong fired him, the response from him and his subordinates was shocking. Sikyong, laughing sarcastically, avoided the question by telling the media to talk to the Cabinet Secretary. The secretary simply said Sikyong fired him because it is in his power to do so according to the exile charter. No specific reason was given.

    The Deputy Sikyong Youthok Karma Gelek responded, at an only 10-minute-long press conference, by saying that Sikyong had served three warning notices to Penpa Tsering to mend his ways in the past one year and that he was not respecting Sikyong. When pressed for what precisely wrong did Penpa Tsering do, Youthok became overbearing and left.

    CTA, where is the transparency?

    The Dalai Lama publicly rebuked both the candidates in Dharamshala in April 2016 for stirring regional tensions among the Tibetan community during the election. Both the candidates publicly apologized. And so, we believed the matter got settled there and then. Sangay even delivered tons of speeches on the importance of Tibetan unity.

    But to our dismay, Lobsang Sangay proved us wrong. The man is still in the election campaign mode despite being in office again for almost two years. This firing on unfounded grounds is an attempt to tarnish the image and reputation of Penpa Tsering. How vindictive can Sikyong get? This is absolutely unacceptable, and it also goes against the very teaching of the Dalai Lama.

    Penpa Tsering said on Voice of America that he was served only one warning notice, and that too without any explanation. Sikyong also denied Penpa Tsering his right to explain his position. Sangay revealed his actual colours. Also, the removal of Penpa Tsering from the office is a slap in Dalai Lama’s face, and a kick to the rear of the twenty-eight thousand Amdos and U-Tsangs who voted for him.

    What can we do now?
    When we think an issue is this important, we are left with no choice but a massive protest. Protesting can help raise public awareness and prevent a cheap political vendetta that can ruin the Tibetan unity thus far achieved.

    I call for the Tibetans to come out in thousands at Gangkyi on 27 November 2017 at 10 am sharp, and do the following.

    Picket by holding up large signs at the Cabinet building and demand detailed explanation for the firing of Penpa Tsering. Gather first at McLeod Ganj and march to Gangkyi, demanding the reinstatement of Penpa Tsering to the office. Hold a vigil at night in memory of Penpa Tsering’s dedication and service to our community. Do sit-ins at the Cabinet building lobby until the demand is met. Resist threats and violence with resolute non-violent action. Be the peace warriors!

    Organise a core group of U-Tsang Association and Amdo Association if the Cholsum Association fails to do so. Assign roles to members pertaining to media coverage, permits, equipment, safety, transport, signs, and placards.

    Gather as many people as you can to help out on the day. Remember to contact them the night before to remind them about the protest. Put the word out through emails, posters and flyers, local media, social media, word of mouth, and any other way you can.

    Organise speakers for they can inspire and educate the Tibetan public, but keep the speeches short and powerful.

    Thunder into the streets! Pound sense into the head of Sikyong! Lead by example, not by ego!

    Source: https://www.tibetsun.com/opinions/2017/11/11/tibetan-unity-in-peril-call-for-massive-street-protest-in-dharamshala

    01

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  14. I don’t trust Lobsang Sangay and His cronies….

    Growing public anger as Kashag reluctant to give clear statement on NA Rep. row

    DHARAMSHALA, Nov. 16: Following the announcement to relieve North America CTA mission representative and former Speaker Penpa Tsering from his position on Nov. 7, there has been a general sense of dissatisfaction among sections of the community with some even suggesting protests and boycott of events where President Sangay is scheduled to attend. 

    While the Kashag asserts that the issue was handled as per the binding rules and with rightful authority, the handling of the situation, many say, has rolled back on President Sangay’s campaign claims of transparency and unity. An official announcement and a press briefing by Kashag have not mentioned a clear reason for Penpa’s ousting other than vague reference to dereliction in his role there and hints at insubordination.

    Officiating President Ven. Karma Gelek Yuthok told the media last week that the Kashag need not give a clarification over the transfer or firing of any staff and that the issue is an “internal matter”.

    The growing impasse between the public and Kashag’s (cabinet) reluctance to give a clear explanation over the cause of Penpa’s ousting has escalated over the last week. A New York based individual going by the name of Mila Rangzen has called for a non-violent mass protest at the end of the month here in Dharamshala, prompting the settlement officer here to issue a public appeal, urging peace and order in the community. 

    Dharamshala settlement officer Dawa Rinchen told Phayul, “While I have no knowledge of when and how many people are going to hold a protest, my prerogative is to avoid any incidents here in Dharamshala where His Holiness the Dalai Lama resides where the CTA is based and subsequently where the eyes of the international community is transfixed on. Hence I appealed the public to maintain peace here.”

    Sporadic posts and videos on social media sites such as Facebook and WeChat expressed dissatisfaction over the handling of the situation calling for a transparent approach to the matter by President Sangay led Kashag. A Tibetan nitezen Tsering Chomphel wrote on Facebook, “I personally think transparency is the first rung of so called democracy ladder. In today’s world, we cannot and should not trust any individual or group blindly. If PT is innocent this time, he needs to speak out. It’s not about PT or Kashag. It’s about peoples trust. People will surely lose trust and interest in our politics if things are not made clear this time.” 

    Tsering Samdup, a Tibetan sweater seller, said that it would be inappropriate if the Kashag issues a clarification simply because some section of the community demands it. “The concerned individual here is Penpa Tsering and if he denies Kashag’s decision and seeks clarification then Kashag might be obliged to give one. Otherwise, there is no need to clarify.”

    Another nitezen opined that three advisory letter/directives were enough caution by the Kashag. Tenzin Kunkyab wrote, “He got fired after three written warning (three yellow cards) after that they pulled red card, I don’t see any wrong with that unless PT himself have some explanation.” Penpa Tsering however claimed he only received one letter prior to his termination letter and has maintained he is not at fault.

    Some people have even called for more dramatic action to boycott the ‘Solidarity with Tibet rally for peace and non-violence’ on 10th December in New York where President Sangay is scheduled to attend. Penpa Tsering, the outgoing representative urged Tibetans in North America to participate in the event with the broader sense of the Tibetan issue at mind and not divisive politics.

    Meanwhile the Tibetan President who is currently on an official visit to northern Europe indicated that the Kashag might not budge and give a clear-cut answer on the issue. He said that Penpa Tsering has accepted the Kashag’s decision to remove him from the Washington office and his cabinet’s decision to remove and appoint liaison officers abruptly, is neither unprecedented nor illegal. 

    The NA office remains the most crucial position in the hierarchy of outposts of the Tibetan polity. The new man in that seat, Education minister Ngodup Tsering today said he has gotten the blessing of His Holiness the Dalai Lama for his new role in Washington.

    http://www.phayul.com/news/article.aspx?id=39805&article=Growing+public+anger+as+Kashag+reluctant+to+give+clear+statement+on+NA+Rep.+row

    Citing Fatigue, Dalai Lama Appoints Personal Emissaries
    November 16, 2017 12:29 PM

    WASHINGTON — The Dalai Lama says he has appointed emissaries to attend international engagements or speak on his behalf indefinitely.

    Citing increasing physical fatigue, the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader made the comments while meeting with a group of international youth leaders brought to Dharmsala, India, by the Washington-based Institute of Peace.

    “I’m 82 years old, and since last year [my] feeling of tiredness has been much increased,” he told the group during video-recorded meetings last week.

    Because he may not be able to maintain a regular international travel schedule, he said, the president of Tibet’s current government-in-exile, Lobsang Sangay, along with prominent Buddhist scholar and former prime minister in exile, Samdong Rinpoche, would act as his official emissaries.

    These “trusted friends, they know my thinking,” he said. “Our work, continuously, should be more active [and internationally engaged], so in these two persons,” he said, pointing to Lobsang and Samdong, “I have full trust.”

    Looking to the dialogue moderator, USIP President Nancy Lindborg, the Dalai Lama said: “If your side … or your government’s side” has concerns, “then these two persons, either one, can participate as my representative or my personal emissary.”

    Penpa Tsering, representative for the Office of Tibet in Washington, which represents the Tibetan government-in-exile, downplayed the significance of the Dalai Lama’s statement.

    “I think this was more of a general statement,” he told VOA. “His holiness is sometimes too tired to travel, and his April visit to the United States has been suspended indefinitely, but he will continue to travel in India, and Europe is only a seven hour flight.”

    Adding that Lobsang’s presidential term is limited to five years, and the fact that Samdong has long served as a kind of unofficial deputy to the Dalai Lama, he said the November 6 comments do not represent a major diversion or change in Dharmsala’s official representation on the world stage.

    Symbol of Tibet
    However, Carole McGranahan, a University of Colorado anthropologist and historian of Tibet, says although prioritizing the Dalai Lama’s health requires a reduction in his international travel schedule, his physical absence from global engagements cannot be substituted via proxy.

    “So much of the goodwill and attention Tibet receives in the world is due to his holiness, and specifically due to his personal interactions with world leaders and with the large audiences he draws around the world. His deep wisdom, his humor and charisma, his serious attention to pressing world issues, and, of course, his model of compassion and leadership, make a deep impression on people,” she told VOA’s Tibetan Service via email.

    “For so much of the world, the Dalai Lama is the symbol of Tibet. Will his trusted emissaries be able to achieve the same effects? Of course not, as no one can truly stand in for the Dalai Lama,” she wrote. “They will be able to represent him, but no one can embody the message of Tibet as he does. His holiness’s stepping back from international travel will signal a new era of Tibetan diplomacy in the world.”

    Robert Barnett, director of the Modern Tibet Studies Program at Columbia University, says the decision may be a signal to Beijing.

    “Of course, there’s always the possibility that this move is intended as a post-19th Party Congress signal to Beijing of increased openness to a resumption of talks, or possibly even a response to a request from there,” he said. “It certainly should make Zhang Yijiong happier,” he added, referring to Communist Party’s Tibet working group chief, who told reporters on the sidelines of a party congress that there could be no excuses to meeting the Dalai Lama.

    “Except that it seems unlikely that warhorses of that type can ever be appeased,” Barnett said.

    In the United States, a California-based Tibetan monk named Tenzin Dhonden, who chairs the non-profit Friends of the Dalai Lama and was secretary of the Dalai Lama Trust, a charitable organization chaired by the Dalai Lama, has acted as a gatekeeper between the Dalai Lama and American philanthropists, scholars, celebrities and donors.

    Late last month, Dhonden, who falsely named himself Personal Emissary of Peace for the Dalai Lama in 2005, was suspended from the trust over corruption allegations.

    This story originated in VOA’s Tibetan Service. Pete Cobus contributed original reporting.

    https://www.voanews.com/a/dalai-lama-appoints-personal-emissaries/4118315.html

    Citing Fatigue, Dalai Lama Appoints Personal Emissaries

    Growing public anger as Kashag reluctant to give clear statement on NA Rep

  15. This is how China received President Trump

    https://youtu.be/Na3lcejmqZ4

    On the other hand, how President Trump would have reacted to the CTA reception is a big question mark

    7b44bf47-5640-4d0a-80ad-ef457a048c58

  16. LATEST NEWS FROM CTA — VERY IMPORTANT —- PLEASE READ!

    xxx

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Contemplate This

.…Instead of turning away people who practise Dorje Shugden, we should be kind to them. Give them logic and wisdom without fear, then in time they give up the ‘wrong’ practice. Actually Shugden practitioners are not doing anything wrong. But hypothetically, if they are, wouldn’t it be more Buddhistic to be accepting? So those who have views against Dorje Shugden should contemplate this. Those practicing Dorje Shugden should forbear with extreme patience, fortitude and keep your commitments. The time will come as predicted that Dorje Shugden’s practice and it’s terrific quick benefits will be embraced by the world and it will be a practice of many beings.

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