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China Bans Unauthorized Reincarnation

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China Bans Unauthorized Reincarnation


Nothing to do with monetization or making money online I'm afraid, but too crazy to let pass without a comment, particularly as I am a closet Buddhist. If you made this stuff up and put it in a film people would say you were nuts.

China, a totalitarian and so-called atheistic state, much given to censorship, human rights abuse, putting anti-freeze in toothpaste, and lead in the paint in kids' toys now, no longer content with persecuting Tibetans, has decided to ban Buddhist monks from reincarnating without government permission.

The new law, which comes into effect next month is described as "an important move to institutionalize management of reincarnation" as it lays down the procedures governing reincarnation. It sounds like something from a Kafka novel but the Chinese are apparently deadly serious.

As ever with the Chinese there appears to be a political, if not totally logical, motive behind their decision. They are trying to diminish the influence of that well-known international troublemaker the Dalai Lama and to further attack the Buddhist religious establishment in Tibet, over 50 years after China invaded and murdered thousands of Tibetans.

The 'logic' behind the decision, such as it is, appears to be that by prohibiting any Buddhist monk not resident in China from seeking reincarnation, the law is de facto handing over to the Chinese authorities the power to choose the next Dalai Lama. This strikes me, however, as being not rational (no kidding), as, if he is not allowed to be re-born in China, he will merely be reborn elsewhere. The Dalai Lama is said to reincarnate after his death as a new human, but the decision as to which human is the new Dalai Lama is traditionally taken by the other lamas. The Chinese should in fact be making it a legal requirement for Buddhist monks to be re-born in China, that way they could control them all from birth!

The Dalai Lama, who is 72, has said that he will not be reborn in Tibet as long as it is still occupied by the Chinese invasion force. The probable outcome is that there will be two Dalai Lamas next time round. One chosen by the Chinese government, the other chosen by Buddhist lamas.

There are appoximately 130,000 Tibetan exiles around the world, so the Dalai Lama will no doubt be born into one of these families.

He might be pleased to know that according to a Gallup poll carried out in 2005, 20% of U.S. adults believe in reincarnation. According to a recent Christian survey 25% of U.S. Christians, including 10% of born-again Christians, say it is their preferred 'end-of-life view'. A non-Tibetan Dalai Lama, experts say, is probably out of the question.


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