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Tibet’s opportunity for Gold with the Olympics

gold1by OUTLOUD Staff

The Beijing 2008 Olympic Games represent a new golden opportunity for change. Not since 1950, when China’s Communist troops invaded and took control of Tibet, has there been an opportunity for the Tibetan voice to be heard worldwide. Their protest to regain self autonomy, or perhaps even independence, from China is providing a daily media feast.

Here are a few basic facts to help you grasp some of the underlying issues that have a grip on the China//Tibet dilemma.

First is the crucial understanding that Tibet is a spiritual society, and the Dalai Lama (the living Buddha) is the spiritual leader of Tibetan Buddhism and the head of the Tibetan government in exile. However, China, which is a secular society that is ruled by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), has total authority over everyone, including all religions. Every religious devotion is therefore expected to be submissive to the CCP.

       For example, the CCP has firm regulations that require all religions to register with them. Furthermore, the leaders of the churches, temples and mosques are selected by the CCP. It was also recently announced that the government was the sole authority to grant reincarnation, the divine process by which the living Buddha is chosen in childhood. As such, it would be appointing the next Dalai Lama.gold2The XIV Dalai Lama, Tenzing Gyatso, left Tibet in 1959 and sought asylum in India, where he resides today. His commitment to nonviolent protest has been well documented worldwide. He recently stated that he would relinquish his role as leader of the Tibetan government in exile if the violence and bloodshed continued, according to The Washington Post.

China, as host to the Olympic Summer Games, still plans to have the “Relay of the Torch” continue through the Tibet region and up to the top of Mount Everest. However, the torch relay has already encountered numerous incidents of protest along its journey to Paris, London and San Francisco.

According to, most Tibetans believe the issue is not about achieving independence from China, but being able to freely worship Buddha/Dalai Lama.


0 0 718 04 March, 2008 Lifestyle, News, Sports, World March 4, 2008

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