The Dalai Lama’s Fatigue

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By: Ringzin Tsomo

DHARAMSALA, INDIA – The past few months have not been easy for His Holiness the Dalai Lama, who has had to cancel a number of meetings and appearances citing exhaustion. Today, His Holiness announced an indefinite leave of absence from his public engagements.

Since the news broke in 2016 that the Dalai Lama was receiving treatment in the famed Mayo Clinic in the United States, observers around the world have taken a keen interest in the Dalai Lama’s health. With this latest news, Tibetans and Tibetan Buddhists everywhere are understandably worried for the aging Tibetan leader and the state of his health, and questions are invariably being asked as to what could have been done to prevent this.

What people want to know is if His Holiness’ cited fatigue is the result of years of abuse, neglect and exploitation from Dharamsala. For 82 years, they have relied on His Holiness for spiritual and secular guidance, and to see them through their darkest and most difficult days.

When His Holiness went into exile in 1959, he was just a few months shy of his 23rd birthday yet was carrying the burden of the entire Tibetan nation on his young shoulders. The succeeding years did not become easier, as the young ruler had to re-establish his people in exile, and make all efforts to secure their welfare. He was also responsible for initiating negotiations for their future and a possible return to their homeland. How many other young adults in the world can say they have been thrust into such a position, to bear so much responsibility at such an age?

As decades in exile passed by, the Tibetan leadership flat-out refused to take up the mantle of responsibility and to grow into a mature, transparent and effective democratic government. Instead, they chose to leave His Holiness traversing the course of the globe for six decades, to raise funds and awareness for his people. Meanwhile, Tibetan elected officials stayed comfortable at home, choosing to descend into the swamp of politicking, constant infighting and petty bickering.

The news of His Holiness relinquishing his public appearances will no doubt greatly worry the Tibetan public, as they too have pinned their hopes on the Dalai Lama since entering into exile. That they will be worried is extremely telling, not just because they love the Dalai Lama but also because it expresses their lack of confidence in the CTA to replace him.

No doubt we wish His Holiness well and a speedy recovery. But even more than that, we wish that the Tibetan leadership would stop being so reliant on the Dalai Lama who, after eight decades of serving sentient beings, should now be given time to rest. A leader of the Dalai Lama’s secular and spiritual caliber should not be traveling the world begging for funds. A leader of His Holiness’s stature should be in Dharamsala, comfortable and in retreats, receiving audiences with world leaders who come to see him while his government takes care of everything else.

But centuries of blind obedience to a singular ruler has created an unthinking, unexposed leadership who become paralyzed at the thought of having to do anything for themselves, and having to make any decisions on their own. Instead, whenever it is inconvenient for them to decide for themselves, they fall back on centuries’ old habits – to consult with the Nechung Oracle, or to defer to the Dalai Lama’s decisions.

But now that the Dalai Lama will no longer be as accessible, what will the Tibetan leadership do? Now that His Holiness is resting and will no longer travel to drum up support for the Tibetans in the foreseeable future, everything will hinge on the Tibetan leadership. Whether they make it or not, and whether they keep up the momentum and support for their works in His Holiness’ absence will be entirely up to them. Whether or not they succeed will be entirely up to them. All of it lies in the hands of the CTA now, all of it.


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  1. Dorje Shugden practitioners have been victims of unfounded blame for more than half a decade with news reports initiated by the Tibetan leadership in Dharamsala alerting the public that Shugden fundamentalist groups posed huge security threat to His Holiness the Dalai Lama. It was alleged that they were covertly backed up by China. The reality is that terrorists are out to harm His Holiness, with two bombs found amid His Holiness’ tight security, thanks to the intensive combing operation by Indian police. The Central Tibetan Administration should stop spreading lies that Shugden practitioners or more absurdly, Shugden practice imperil the life of the Dalai Lama, and pay more attention to real threats such as this.

    One Suspect of Bodhgaya Blast Appear to Be Nepali Origin, JMB the Terror Group

    January 29, 2018 | By TJ editor
    Five suspects in the Bodhgaya blast have been picked out from the video footage in the CCTV cameras installed around the Mahabodhi temple and the police believes one of them to be of Nepali origin. Jamaat-ul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) terror group is being suspected as the primary outfit behind the Bodh Gaya incident and less likely for the Students Islamic Movement of India or Indian Mujahideen’s hand.
    Gaya police is seeking the assistance of investigating agencies across the country to find out the identity details of five suspects they have found from the CCTV video footage. While the pictures of the five suspects are being circulated among the agencies by Gaya police, an officer informed that one of the suspects appears to be of Nepali origin.
    “The officer, who requested anonymity, said that one of the five suspects appeared to be of Nepali origin. Their movements have been traced with the help of CCTVs. One of the suspects abandoned a bag containing explosives near gate number four of the temple. Another bomb was planted near the Tibetan monastery.” said the report in the Telegraph.
    According to the investigations, JMB could have activated a module in Bihar to carry out the attack, suggesting that the attack was controlled from West Bengal. There is a call made from Bihar to West Bengal after planting the three bombs in Bodh Gaya is what has led the investigators to believe that the JMB could be behind the incident.
    “The officer said the evidence strongly indicates JMB’s involvement in the failed terror attack, which had aimed to kill Buddhist monks and foreigners present in Bodh Gaya to listen to the sermons of Buddhist spiritual leader the Dalai Lama. ” said the report in Times of India.

    One Suspect of Bodhgaya Blast Appear

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.…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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