Author Topic: Self-immolations and the fight for true freedom  (Read 4835 times)

DharmaDefender

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Self-immolations and the fight for true freedom
« on: December 04, 2012, 08:44:42 PM »
In recent months, over 80 people have self-immolated for a free Tibet. Something tells me the CTA are keeping mum over the issue so more people will die and they can say, "See! People are dying in Tibet because its Chinas fault". (I wouldnt put it past them!!!) Well no, not really Chinas fault, you COULD tell the Tibetans to stop doing it but you dont, do you Dr Sangay?

From http://www.dorjeshugden.com/all-articles/the-controversy/self-immolations-and-the-fight-for-true-freedom/

Self-immolations and the fight for true freedom

Over 80 people have self-immolated protesting for Free Tibet – was it worth it?

With the recent spate of self-immolations across Tibet, attention has inevitably turned again towards the Tibetans’ precarious position as they champion their continued cause for autonomy. And what of freedom?

The Chinese claim that the self-immolations and ensuing unrest are masterminded by the Dalai Lama; the Tibetans living outside the mother country attribute the self-immolations to the desperate frustrations that arise from living under an oppressive Chinese regime. So, what of freedom?

The politics surrounding the issue of Tibet’s freedom and/or autonomy has become more than complex for they naturally implicate China, a new global and economic power who no one wants to upset. Why fight for Tibet when it would be seen to spite China and risk all of one’s future international and economic relationships with a rising super-power?

With so many odds stacked up against them, it looks like the Tibetans have a long way to go with this fight for freedom. It’s going to take a much bigger strategy.

Having said that, why is it then that the governing body of the Tibetans in exile – known as the Central Tibetan Administration (CTA) – spend so much of their time and energy on much smaller issues? For example, a great deal of the CTA’s efforts, time and even funds are being put towards the suppression of a particular spiritual practice of the Buddhist Protector Deity Dorje Shugden. Since the Dalai Lama instituted a ban against this Protector, so many of the exiled Tibetan community’s efforts have been channeled towards upholding this religious decree and snuffing out people who choose to continue their practice.


There are active witch-hunts for Dorje Shugden practitioners. The CTA even support the printing and distribution of literature to disparage this practice and denigrate or physically attack the practitioners. Anyone who chooses to continue the practice is labeled a traitor to the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan cause. So, lay and ordained members of the Tibetan exiled community in India and Nepal are actively encouraged to ostracize and cast out Dorje Shugden practitioners.

Not only are the CTA spending much-needed funds on upholding an outdated and unjust religious ban but they are also creating rifts within their already unstable community. Monasteries have been split, monks have been separated from their teachers, families are torn apart, local businesses are attacked and children of Shugden practitioners are even denied access to the Tibetan schools in India.

Therefore, on the one hand, the CTA and Tibetans are championing a return and reunification with their homeland Tibet. But on the other, their very own tiny community of 100,000 in India are desperately and horribly split among themselves. What does this say of harmony and unification when the governing body of the CTA cannot even hold their own people together? And why would any one else support their cause when they see how unkindly and illogically they are managing their small exiled community? Why support the Tibetans’ return to Tibet when they’re actively creating separation among themselves now? How can anyone take the CTA’s fight for independence seriously when it has become increasingly apparent that they just can’t govern their people fairly or logically?

In this day and age, most modern, progressive and democratic countries make a clear distinction between secular affairs of the state and the spiritual beliefs and practices of the individual. In the case of the exiled Tibetan community. the ban on a spiritual practice has become intricately woven into the secular governance of the people, so much so that the most basic human rights of religious freedom are denied to a significant sector of their population. Again, how can they compete and hope to succeed in a global arena when they continue to impose spiritual decrees within their secular government? This does not happen in any progressive, modern country in the world.


Then, while all this is happening, the CTA have remained unusually quiet about the self-immolations. Apart from the token occasional comments, they have said or done little else to try to stop the immolations. This inaction is leading to more loss of lives. Their silence becomes suspicious, making it seem that they may well be manipulating the situation to their advantage or even be behind the incidents. Are the CTA intentionally remaining silent, refusing to strongly discourage the self-immolations because it generates more sympathy for their cause? Are they allowing their people to die for a free Tibet?

Why is it that the CTA can invest so much time, effort and resources into stamping down on Dorje Shugden practitioners, but become so spineless in speaking against the self-immolations? Instead, the Dalai Lama and the CTA should stand up firmly against this, issuing clear directives that such action is not condoned nor encouraged, and that continuing in this way is tantamount to going against the Dalai Lama and his people. After all, this is exactly how they have been speaking to, putting down and repressing Dorje Shugden practitioners. Why is that the same tone and urgency is not expressed to prevent more cases of self-immolations and deaths?

The self-immolations make a big statement in the fight for Tibet’s freedom and people throughout the land are literally giving up their lives for the sake of trying to free an entire country and people. But how much of this fight is really worth it when the CTA cannot even achieve unity among their exiled people? Or govern with a truly fair and firm hand? Isn’t there a great irony that Tibetans in the motherland are fighting for freedom when their exiled brothers and sisters are denying each other the most basic freedoms to choose their religious beliefs?
« Last Edit: December 04, 2012, 08:48:53 PM by DharmaDefender »

vajratruth

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Re: Self-immolations and the fight for true freedom
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2012, 09:35:46 PM »

Then, while all this is happening, the CTA have remained unusually quiet about the self-immolations. Apart from the token occasional comments, they have said or done little else to try to stop the immolations. This inaction is leading to more loss of lives. Their silence becomes suspicious, making it seem that they may well be manipulating the situation to their advantage or even be behind the incidents. Are the CTA intentionally remaining silent, refusing to strongly discourage the self-immolations because it generates more sympathy for their cause? Are they allowing their people to die for a free Tibet?

Not only has the CTA not done much to stop their own (and already small population of Tibetans in exile) people from such drastic actions, Dr Lobsang Sangay’s recent statement made during his interview with The Huffington Post can be taken as an encouragement for even more people to self immolate.

I read in horror as Dr Sangay said that it was “sacred duty” of all Tibetans in exile to support such acts! To me, such words and their ongoing policy of persecuting their own people based on religion shows very clearly that the CTA does not care very much for its own people and is ill deserved to have Tibet returned to them until they demonstrate that they value the life of each and everyone of their citizens.

All Tibetan in exile themselves must realize that we live in a modern era where information can be easily accessed and the rest of the world cannot help but see the CTA as chronically hypocritical and inept in providing fair treatment and justice to all in their process of governance. That which the CTA is failing in, is precisely what they accuse China of not exercising. How can you expect the world to support such inconsistencies? I speak for myself but I am quite certain I am not alone in saying that the CTA must change its ongoing policy of discrimination against Shugden practitioners.

Some have wrongly alleged that the Shugden practice harms the Tibetan Cause and yet, even with the practice banned, Tibetans in exile are no where close to returning home. In fact recent cold reactions from heads of states around the world towards the Dalai Lama indicates that the cause is fast losing traction. People just don’t believe in just words anymore.

Clearly, the reason for that has nothing to do with the practice of worshipping an enlightened deity but everything to do with the mentality that is so pervasive within the CTA. What a backward bunch of mentality trying to compete in a world where even stalwart countries of communism have had to change to be accepted.The Tibetan community in exile need to seriously look into that and leverage on the power of the people to take actions towards true democracy and the best way to do that is to remove the Dorje Shugden ban, which should never have been there in the first place.

Ensapa

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Re: Self-immolations and the fight for true freedom
« Reply #2 on: December 05, 2012, 03:34:09 AM »

Then, while all this is happening, the CTA have remained unusually quiet about the self-immolations. Apart from the token occasional comments, they have said or done little else to try to stop the immolations. This inaction is leading to more loss of lives. Their silence becomes suspicious, making it seem that they may well be manipulating the situation to their advantage or even be behind the incidents. Are the CTA intentionally remaining silent, refusing to strongly discourage the self-immolations because it generates more sympathy for their cause? Are they allowing their people to die for a free Tibet?


The CTA has not really kept quiet about the self immolations. Every time someone in Tibet self immolates, phayul will report it, and following that would be a report of either Namgyal or Mindroling monastery doing pujas and prayers for the self immolators. There was even once where lobsang sanggay commented on the self immolations the way a businessman would with a failed investment, on why did the world not pity CTA even though there was so many self immolations going on. It certainly did not sound like he was sad about the self immolations, more like that he planned them, especially when he himself commented that the self immolations rose after he took office.

the picture is clear now, CTA. be very careful....

dsiluvu

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Re: Self-immolations and the fight for true freedom
« Reply #3 on: December 07, 2012, 08:28:45 AM »
As I recalled clearly as Buddhist taking one's life is a negative karma especially die to attachment reasons... why not instead move on and change what we can change like being more progressive and contribute back to the world. Why so hung up over a piece of land? Can we not create the beauty of Tibetan culture which is Dharma every where?

The Dharma taught us to not be attached to anything because this life is just temporary, better to take care of our future lives to come and make merits...

You may not even be reborn back as a Tibetan so why prolong this suffering and pain of a deluded attached concept of what's "mine" not "yours" which is in reality is not true and does not exist really which we learnt from great Tibetan Dharma teachers, which we are "suppose" to "practice" anyways.

By standing by and watching their own people burn, the CTA is actually showing the world what a uncompassionate, unwise govt they are to allow their people to continue doing this... it also is a slap and contradictory to all the teachings and messages given by HHDL about none violence, happiness, peace, kindness etc... it is showing the world that Tibetans do not believe or practice what they preach and sell to the world, which is the one thing they are successful for - Buddhism. So basically they are kinda like dragging themselves down further.... very unfortunate.

Ensapa

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Re: Self-immolations and the fight for true freedom
« Reply #4 on: December 07, 2012, 08:38:34 AM »
As I recalled clearly as Buddhist taking one's life is a negative karma especially die to attachment reasons... why not instead move on and change what we can change like being more progressive and contribute back to the world. Why so hung up over a piece of land? Can we not create the beauty of Tibetan culture which is Dharma every where?

The Dharma taught us to not be attached to anything because this life is just temporary, better to take care of our future lives to come and make merits...

You may not even be reborn back as a Tibetan so why prolong this suffering and pain of a deluded attached concept of what's "mine" not "yours" which is in reality is not true and does not exist really which we learnt from great Tibetan Dharma teachers, which we are "suppose" to "practice" anyways.

By standing by and watching their own people burn, the CTA is actually showing the world what a uncompassionate, unwise govt they are to allow their people to continue doing this... it also is a slap and contradictory to all the teachings and messages given by HHDL about none violence, happiness, peace, kindness etc... it is showing the world that Tibetans do not believe or practice what they preach and sell to the world, which is the one thing they are successful for - Buddhism. So basically they are kinda like dragging themselves down further.... very unfortunate.

Even worse, the kalon tripa kept stressing that it is a peaceful approach as it does not harm other people. What about the families of the self immolators? What about the communities that the self immolators live in? China is a country so to expect them to be lenient on things like that is not logical. Any country will go head on with people trying  to mess up the peace and stability of the country. CTA should stop and think of other ways instead.

dsiluvu

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Re: Self-immolations and the fight for true freedom
« Reply #5 on: December 07, 2012, 10:17:15 AM »
If this was really TRUE.... then we would not hear such a thing as discrimination and beating up Dorje Shugden practitioners. If this was TRUE then there would be no Ban. Who are we kidding??? They must think the world is stupid.

Ensapa

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Re: Self-immolations and the fight for true freedom
« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2012, 10:20:29 AM »
If this was really TRUE.... then we would not hear such a thing as discrimination and beating up Dorje Shugden practitioners. If this was TRUE then there would be no Ban. Who are we kidding??? They must think the world is stupid.

I think the CTA is somewhat deluded as I have spoken to a few people IN Tibet and they told me that they are very angry against the CTA because the CTA does not like Dorje Shugden and their Guru, Trijang Rinpoche. So even if China allows CTA to take Tibet back, I dont think so it would be easy for them to take Tibet back at all. That is the bigger divide that the ban has created, and I do not know if it can be reconciled easily unless the ban is lifted now and it is worked on.

beggar

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Re: Self-immolations and the fight for true freedom
« Reply #7 on: December 08, 2012, 10:05:45 AM »
If they were clever, the Tibetans should in fact, be very, very friendly and accommodating towards the Chinese. It is common sense to know that fighting against such a giant might like the Chinese would be tantamout to throwing an egg against a mountain. And nobody likes receiving or being associated with violence. The more the Tibetans fight, burn themselves and create trouble, the less China is going to want to take them seriously.

(The Chinese know too, all about the ban on Dorje Shugden. How can they take anything from the Tibetans seriously when it is clear for all the world to see that the exiled Tibetan leaders (CTA) cannot even control their very small 100,000 community in India and are creating split among themselves. Would any government in their right mind want to allow back a group of people who are creating problems even among their own people?! what would that signal for the greater good of a country as large as China?)

So wouldn't it make more sense that, instead of being belligerent and doing all the things that China doesn't like (protests, self-immolations etc), the Tibetans SHOULD do the things China wants of them. In the long run, if you appease a giant like China and them on your side, wouldn't they end up doing MORE for you and your people? This isn't about who's right or wrong anymore, but about how we can get the best benefit for the Tibetan people. The protesting and going against what China wishes is only to cut off one's nose to spite one's face.
 

Ensapa

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Re: Self-immolations and the fight for true freedom
« Reply #8 on: December 08, 2012, 11:52:04 AM »
If they were clever, the Tibetans should in fact, be very, very friendly and accommodating towards the Chinese. It is common sense to know that fighting against such a giant might like the Chinese would be tantamout to throwing an egg against a mountain. And nobody likes receiving or being associated with violence. The more the Tibetans fight, burn themselves and create trouble, the less China is going to want to take them seriously.

(The Chinese know too, all about the ban on Dorje Shugden. How can they take anything from the Tibetans seriously when it is clear for all the world to see that the exiled Tibetan leaders (CTA) cannot even control their very small 100,000 community in India and are creating split among themselves. Would any government in their right mind want to allow back a group of people who are creating problems even among their own people?! what would that signal for the greater good of a country as large as China?)

So wouldn't it make more sense that, instead of being belligerent and doing all the things that China doesn't like (protests, self-immolations etc), the Tibetans SHOULD do the things China wants of them. In the long run, if you appease a giant like China and them on your side, wouldn't they end up doing MORE for you and your people? This isn't about who's right or wrong anymore, but about how we can get the best benefit for the Tibetan people. The protesting and going against what China wishes is only to cut off one's nose to spite one's face.

This is what I have been thinking about too. Why is it that the Tibetans have not buddy up with China to come up with an solution to their current woes? why do they seem to opt for the 'easier' way out that will damage more people in the long run? It does feel and sound like they do not really think that much after all on the consequences and also the correct ways to handle such incidents. Has the CTA actually thought of better ways to do something? Are they really serious about getting Tibet back or they're just waiting for Nechung to give it to them?

Gabby Potter

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Re: Self-immolations and the fight for true freedom
« Reply #9 on: March 02, 2015, 08:11:47 PM »
It's so painful and saddening to look at these pictures of people burning themselves. I never voted for all these kinds of activities, we don't solve a problem like that because by dying, it doesn't solve anything. I have never supported this and I will never support self immolation.