While Lord Buddha attained enlightenment in Bodh Gaya on Indian soil, the principles and philosophy of Buddhism was practiced from historical times in full measure in Tibet, amongst other countries. Tibet emerged as one of the principal countries in the world, where Buddhism is the sole religion. This was so, until the Chinese aggressors occupied Tibet and systematically tried to undo Buddhist culture and traditions in Tibet.
The greatest loss for Buddhist religion and Buddhists around the world was the loss of independence for Tibet, when China entered the country and massacred innocent Tibetan protestors several decades back.
While the Tibetans who had to leave Tibet after Chinese aggression have been fighting for the liberation of Tibet, the world conscience has still not heard the cry of Tibetans for freedom and to protect Buddhist culture and traditions in Tibet.
While it is said that Tibet has lost it’s freedom which is absolutely true , what has not been adequately said is that Buddhists around the world have lost the citadel of Buddhism, as at present no Buddhist from outside can visit Tibet and feel the inspiration of Buddhism on Tibet soil , where Buddhism in true spirit was practiced for several centuries.
This loss to Buddhists around the world have not been echoed adequately in the world arena so far and the Buddhists around the world are yet to adequately voice their sadness and unhappiness about the loss of independent Tibet ,which is an irreparable loss for the Buddhist religion.
There are reported to be around 535 million Buddhists in the world ,spread in several countries including China, Japan, Thailand, Vietnam, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, South Korea, Taiwan, India and others. Why have these millions of Buddhists remained silent for all practical purposes, when Tibet was lost to Buddhists due to Chinese aggression ?.
Just as Muslims think that their life would not be complete without visiting Mecca and Hindus think that their life would not be complete without visiting Varanasi, Buddhists are conscious of the fact that visit to Tibet and praying at the Buddhist monastery in Tibet is a compelling necessity for them. They are now denied this opportunity.
One gets an impression that Buddhists around the world remain largely unorganized.
When government of Sri Lanka, a predominantly Buddhist country, denied visa to His Holiness the Dalai Lama, obeying the dictates of Chinese government , the Buddhists in Sri Lanka did not launch any significant or meaningful protest.
While the political leaders and Buddhists in Sri Lanka utilize every opportunity to visit Bodh Gaya in India to pay respects to Lord Buddha and pray in the sanctified place, they do not seem to be adequately concerned about the harm done to the Buddhist religion by the Chinese government occupying Tibet and destroying the Buddhist culture and tradition. Why is this ?
Similar is the case with regard to the Buddhists living in other parts of the world ,who visit Bodh Gaya to pray but do not seem to be adequately concerned about the loss to the Buddhism due to the Tibet being occupied by China. Why is this? Is it due to the feeling of helplessness ?
The central theme of Buddhist philosophy is adherence to non violence, maintaining spirit of love towards everyone and compassion for the less privileged people. Certainly, Buddhists cannot take arms to defend Tibet ,even when the occupier of Tibet is an unscrupulous and dictatorial regime. But, certainly they can use the moral force that is gained by them due to their adherence to the Buddhist philosophy ,to convince the world about the need to liberate Tibet and restore the glory of the country, for the benefit of not only Buddhism but also the entire world community.
The two countries that can decisively help Tibet in getting it’s freedom are India and USA, where considerable section of citizens sympathise with the Tibetan cause and want to see a liberated Tibet soon.
Buddhists around the world should submit an appeal to the Prime Minister of India and President of USA to help the cause of Tibet. Not only to the leaders of these two countries, but similar appeal should be submitted to all governments in the world as well as United Nations Organisation. The appeal should be signed by cross section of Buddhists living in several parts of the world , so that unified voice of Buddhists would be heard around the world and the world conscience would be awakened. China can resist confrontation in military, economic and trade front but not when confronted with moral force.
The frustrated Buddhsits around the world may think that it is an Utopian expectation that China would yield to the moral force. But, such doubt is unnecessary and counter productive and what is called for now is action with courage of conviction, that Buddhist philosophy inculcate in every Buddhist.
Buddhists around the world should move on and utilize their moral strength attained by their adherence to Buddhist philosophy and then they will realize the potential of the moral force to undo the injustice done to Tibet.
The present time is ripe forAs the world community is now increasingly realizing the ruthlessness of the Chinese government, the response of the world community and several governments to the appeal of the Buddhists around the world for doing justice to Tibet would be overwhelming.
The present time is ripe for achieving liberation of Tibet and restore the glory of Buddhist philosophy in Tibet.
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