Monday, March 31, 2008

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Stand with the monks

(Lhasa monks speaking to foreign journalists on March 27th)

Vigil for Peace and Human Rights in Tibet

You are invited to stand up with Tibet’s monks — and with DC’s Tibetan community and Friends of Tibet from Virginia and Maryland — this weekend and continuing through Monday, March 31st.

Tibetan monks from the Drepung monastery in India will be here in Washington, DC to do what their brothers in Tibet cannot do — stand up freely for human rights in Tibet, for freedom of speech and freedom of religion in their homeland — and for the very survival of Tibet.

Along with hundreds of other Tibetans, many monks from Tibet’s Drepung Monastery arrested during the peaceful march of 400 monks from Drepung to Lhasa on March 10th are still missing and unaccounted for.

Join the Drepung monks for prayers and their Vigil for Peace and Human Rights in Tibet on Saturday, and Sunday at the Chinese embassy in DC’s Kalorama area to let China know that the world is watching them. Make your voice heard by standing with them and Tibetans from all over the east coast on Monday, March 31, in Lafayette Park in front of the White House. Every voice counts — Tibet needs your support today more than ever!

Vigil for Peace and Human Rights in Tibet
Saturday: Chinese embassy 3-5pm
Sunday: Chinese embassy, 3-5pm
Monday: White House, 12:30-2pm

IMPORTANT: Please check the website of the Capital Area Tibetan Association in advance for the latest information on times and locations.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Jetsunma's advice to fight with Bodhicitta

(Jetsunma Ahkon Lhamo, Spiritual Director, Kunzang Palyul Choling)

On March 15th, Jetsunma gave a teaching to students of Kunzang Palyul Choling (KPC) in Poolesville, Maryland (just outside Washington, D.C.). The following statements are adapted from her remarks that day:

We saw it in Tiananmen Square. In Rangoon and the Burmese countryside. Now, as in 1959, in Lhasa and throughout Tibet. In this uncertain time, selfishness, unwholesome actions, brutality, and force . . . and for the time being, darkness seems to have the upper hand.

The attack on Dharma is happening all over the world. For as long as we can hold out as Dharma practitioners, we are charged with defending our faith. We have a right to defend against the darkness. The Tibetan people have a right to defend their faith. The monks and nuns who are standing up in Tibet, in Burma as well . . . I join them in body, speech, and mind. They have seen that it is time we cannot be pushed any further.

This is the time to rely most on our deepest and purest intention and our most wholesome qualities. It means being solid practitioners. It means not being afraid to speak up to defend one's sangha, or one's temple, or one's monastery. Remember that we are fighting, not with weapons, but with Bodhicitta, with virtue. So when we defend the Dharma, we want to do it for the intention of all sentient beings.

If those monks and nuns in Tibet are willing to be shot dead, we should be willing to stand with them.

For further information on upcoming teachings on Bodhicitta (The Great Compassion), as well as a retreat with Jetsunma, please visit the Events section of KPC's website here.

A Prince, a Polish Prime Minister and Lhasa Monks

(Photo of Lhasa Buddhist monk courtesy of AP Photo via

Today in Lhasa:

One monk shouted "Tibet is not free, Tibet is not free" before he started to cry, an Associated Press journalist at the scene, Charles Hutzler, reported.

Another monk said the rioting on 14 March "had nothing to do with the Dalai Lama".

This occurred at Lhasa’s Jokhang Temple while two dozen foreign journalists hand-picked by China, were allowed back in Tibet on a three-day, carefully scripted visit to Tibet. In the presence of the reporters, a group of about 30 monks shouted that there was no religious freedom and that the Dalai Lama was not to blame for recent violence there.

It took a lot of courage for the monks to voice the suppression they have suffered under Chinese rule, given the closely monitored visit of the foreign journalists.

Also courtesy of Students for a Free Tibet, we’ve also learned that Poland’s Prime Minister Donald Tusk is also boycotting the opening ceremonies of the Beijing Olympics. This followed the French Foreign Minister’s suggestion that nations boycott the opening ceremonies.

Prince Charles is boycotting the entire Olympics.

If you are in the Washington, D.C. area, check the website of the Capital Area Tibetan Association (CATA) regularly for updates on the daily protests that are occurring, and do participate in them.

On March 31st, please join the International Campaign for Tibet and CATA to “publicly urge President Bush to make a statement, and to not stand next to the Communist Party Officials at the opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympics.”

Monday, March 31, 2008
12:30pm - 2:00pm
Lafayette Park at the White House
16th and H street NW, Washington, DC
Metro Stops: Mcpherson Square(Orange and Blue) Farragut North(Red)

After the rally, participants led by a group of Monks will march up Connecticut Ave to the Chinese Embassy to demand that China dialogue with the Dalai Lama. Media Contact : Mr. Namkha Tenzin (703) 673 8860

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

French President Responds to China's Violence

French president Nicolas Sarkozy was the first world leader to go on the record and raise the possibility of sending a strong message to China by boycotting the opening ceremonies of the Olympics in Bejing this summer.

Monday, March 24, 2008

The Olympic Torch and Tibet

This just in from the Capital Area Tibetan Association (CATA):




March 24, 2008 - MONDAY

WHEN : 2:00 PM - 5:00PM


Saturday, March 22, 2008

Pelosi addresses freedom-loving people

(Photo courtesy of AP)

On Friday, Nancy Pelosi met with His Holiness the Dalai Lama in Dharamsala. She is in India as part of a U.S. congressional delegation for bilateral meetings with the Indian government, and to discuss climate change.

Pelosi made the following comments during the meeting:

"If freedom loving people throughout the world do not speak out against China’s oppression in Tibet we have lost all moral authority to speak on human rights anywhere in the world. The cause of Tibet is a challenge to the conscience of the world. A challenge we can help meet."

Watch the YouTube video of her speech here.

Friday, March 21, 2008

What His Holiness said or didn't say

(Photo courtesy of Gurinder Osan/AP)

His Holiness the Dalai Lama has been quoted in the news media the world over. Buddhist Relief finds the webcasts of his recent meetings with reporters, in Dharamsala, as being the best source of reliable information of what he said or didn't say, in proper context. Check out the website here.

If you are in the London area, use your freedom and march in solidarity with Tibetans in Tibet. If you are not in the area, do forward this information to those living or visiting London.

Date: Saturday, March 22, 2008
Time: 12 noon - 2 p.m.
Place: Assembly at 11:30 a.m. at Park Crescent (west side - up towards Regents Park) to Trafalgar Square
Street: nearest tube - Great Portland Street
City: London, UK

This march is being organized by Tibetans and supporters in the UK in response to the continuing violent suppression of Tibetan protest in Tibet. Come and lend your voice to what is fast becoming a global movement for change in the region. For more details on this march, click here and here.

March organizers:
Free Tibet Campaign
Tibetan Youth UK
Students for a Free Tibet UK (
Tibet Society of the UK
The Tibetan Community in Britain

"For as long as space endures
And for as long as living beings remain
Until then may I too abide
To dispel the misery of the world."
- Shantideva - 8th century,
The Way of the Bodhisattva

China Loses Friends Over Tibet

An interesting article in the UK Telegraph titled "China Loses Friends Over Tibet" contains the jaw-dropping statement by Zhang Qingli, the Communist Party secretary in Tibet, describing the Dalai Lama as "a wolf in monk's robes, a devil with a human face but the heart of a beast".

As the reporter notes, "The party is shooting itself in the foot by demonising a man who is the living embodiment of peace."

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Daily Vigils at the Chinese Embassy, Washington, D.C.

In the Washington, D.C. area, come express your solidarity with the Tibetans in Tibet. The Capital Area Tibetan Association is organizing vigils and protests for the next several days.


WHEN : 11:00 AM - 5:00PM (Friday, March 21st)

WHERE : Chinese Embassy @ 2300 Connecticut Ave NW

Come and let your voices be heard.

We will meet at the park across the Chinese Embassy at 11:00AM sharp. Please bring Tibetan Flags, Banners and Placards. We'll keep you posted as we plan a bigger rally for the weekend.

So do visit the CATA website for updates on upcoming protests.

Buddhist Relief would like to post all upcoming vigils and protests around the world. Please contact us, if you have any information.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Stand with the people of Tibet

Please take a few minutes to make your voice be heard to protest against China's 'rule of terror' over the Tibetans. Click on each of these three websites and let the world know these atrocities are unacceptable.

Students for a Free Tibet

Race for Tibet

Need some inspiration? Read the following, sent to Buddhist Relief yesterday:


When it becomes illegal to pray, burn incense,
or have a simple picture of your leader,
and people spend years in prison being tortured
and killed for doing nothing more
things have gone much too wrong.

If you are not already aware of this,
you need to know that the Tibetan people are the cornerstone and the living example of tolerance, non-aggression, and compassion towards their enemies.

The Tibetan people are nothing less than the standard for non-violence in an increasingly violent world, and have endured unspeakable human consequences for half a century as payment for their absolute faith in
forgiveness and compassion.

Unbelievably, and unfortunately, the Tibetan's have never had the benefit of the world press spotlight, much less the interest or compassion of the world community at large for their shining example of how
peace can conquer suffering and love can conquer hate.

If we lose that we lose everything.

We cannot afford to turn our backs in complacency
on the Tibetan's struggle for peace and freedom.

If we, as individuals and a world community, do not support the Tibetans now
in their desperate struggle to preserve these precious and essential virtues of their culture that exemplify the most basic of our own common rights and beliefs,
then we place ourselves at serious risk of being in their place someday,
praying someone will come to our rescue
as they are now.
It's that simple and that serious.


Make your opinion known.
Refuse to let propaganda win over truth,
and oppression win over freedom.
Do it for all of us.

Every day thousands of Tibetans pray and spin prayer wheels filled with 100,000 prayers
for one single prayer … that ALL beings are lifted from suffering.
That includes me and you.
The very least we can do is spend a few minutes
supporting them in their valiant cause
in their time of need.

Thank you

(Author unknown)

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Graphic Photos From Protest

We were just sent a link to photos taken at at various protests in Tibet and India over the past week. WARNING: some of the photos taken at the Ngaba protest are quite graphic.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Show your solidarity with the Tibetans

(The above photo: Buddhist monks marched in Xiahe, Gansu Province last Friday. Photo by Agence France-Presse - Getty Images)

United Nations special envoy Ibrahim Gambari’s recent third visit to Burma ended in failure, an outcome expected after he was informed on arrival that the junta was in no mood to change its political battle plans. The military government refused to budge with regards to meaningful dialogues with detained pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi. The situation in Burma remains in a gridlock.

Yesterday, what His Holiness the Dalai Lama had to say about the Tibetan uprising against Chinese rule might as well apply to the Burma situation: "They have no experience how to deal with problems through talk, only suppress."

Last week, as Gambari flew out of Burma empty-handed, the violent suppression of protests by Tibetans in Tibet were beginning. Today, the uprising in Tibet has spread. Click on the map posted today on the International Campaign for Tibet (ICT)website.

The courageous Tibetans who are speaking out need our support. We just received this from the Students for a Free Tibet (with some edits):

Just today, 100 Tibetan middle school students in Ngaba, Amdo (Sichuan) staged a spontaneous demonstration on their school grounds calling for the return of the Dalai Lama. It is reported that 40 of the students were severely beaten and arrested. 700 additional Tibetan students from the same middle school are now bravely conducting a demonstration to demand the release of their peers outside the Public Security Bureau building where the students are being held.

Reports of protests in cities across Tibet, including the Tibetan provinces of Amdo and Kham (now annexed into China's Qinghai, Sichuan, and Gansu provinces) counter the Chinese government claims that the unrest is the result of a handful of “troublemakers” and demonstrate the widespread Tibetan opposition to China’s occupation.

The Chinese authorities in Lhasa have threatened an increased crackdown after midnight Monday (4pm GMT) and according to Chinese state-run media, “Those who harbor or hide criminal elements shall be punished severely according to law upon completion of investigations.”

Already, armed Chinese police have been conducting house-to-house searches and making arbitrary arrests. There is no reliable estimate of the number of detentions but reports suggest wide-scale raids and arrests across Lhasa. According to eyewitness reports received by the Tibetan Center for Human Rights and Democracy, "mothers and elderlies in the families helplessly plea at security forces upon seeing their sons and loved ones being beaten and dragged away."

Please, show your support for the Tibetans living under China's "rule of terror." Contact your Congressperson today, and urge him or her to demand that the U.S. support immediate international intervention in Tibet. CLICK HERE to search for the phone number for your Congressperson.

Call and ask to speak to someone about the situation in Tibet. You may be passed to a legislative aide or simply have your comments recorded by an office administrator, which is fine.

Tell them:

The U.S. should speak out forcefully against China's brutal crackdown in Tibet.
Please urge the U.S. government to strongly support the Dalai Lama's call for a United Nations team of investigators to go to Tibet as soon as possible.
The U.S. should do everything in its power to urge China to withdraw military and security forces, release those detained, and allow peaceful protest. China must halt house-to-house searches; and authorities must refrain from any further arrests of Tibetan protesters even after its so-called surrender deadline has passed on Monday at midnight. China must immediately allow foreign journalists back into all Tibetan areas (Tibetan Autonomous Region as well as the Tibetan areas of Gansu, Qinghai and Sichuan).

This is an urgent matter because the "surrender deadline" is fast approaching – and may actually have passed as you're reading this – so please call immediately.

Please stay tuned to the situation in Tibet as it unfolds by visiting the SFT website and the SFT blog. Both are filled with breaking news and analysis.

Bod Rangzen - Free Tibet,
Lobsang, Kate, Dechen, Mel, Han, Kunsang, Gaphel, Nick, Kala, Lhakyi, Tenzin and everyone else at SFT International Headquarters in New York

Likewise, Adam Yauch of the Beastie Boys is also requesting that you urgently contact your Congressperson.

Please stand in solidarity with the people of Tibet and hold the line against the darkness.