Sunday, August 05, 2007

Permission to reincarnate please

You've got to love China, they think nothing of tells living Buddhas to obtain permission before they reincarnate. Have you ever heard anything so absurd?

My wife asked me "What's the purpose of that?" - I honestly did not know. This article gives some insight.

It is the latest in a series of measures by the Communist authorities to tighten their grip over Tibet. Reincarnate lamas, known as tulkus, often lead religious communities and oversee the training of monks, giving them enormous influence over religious life in the Himalayan region. Anyone outside China is banned from taking part in the process of seeking and recognising a living Buddha, effectively excluding the Dalai Lama, who traditionally can play an important role in giving recognition to candidate reincarnates.

China is seeking to  eliminate a religion through legislation. I cannot imagine a more bizarre approach to controlling what people believe. Maybe its my American sense of libertarian self determination, or maybe it is my strongly held believe that religion (or lack thereof) is a personal matter, but China is dead wrong here.

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3 comments:

Nathanial said...

My friend overheard this in Beijing today: "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"

She took some video of the exchange, as well, which you can see at: http://beijingwideopen.org/2007/08/05/video-from-the-lama-temple/

soulMerlin said...

It's been the same throughout history - after all Jesus was executed through a political coup. Politics and Religion have always in some way, restricted faith.

soulMerlin said...

It's been the same throughout history - after all Jesus was executed through a political coup. Politics and Religion have always in some way, restricted faith.