Fiction Daily.
A blog on writing, writers and why we read. Posted most mornings by Marion Blackburn.
Untruth & oppression
Yesterday's entry quoted Chinese officials calling His Holiness the Dalai Lama a "jackal in monk's robes." I offer the photo above, of Chinese soldiers at work, and invite a comparison to the photo of two days ago of a 72-year-old man wearing yellow-and-maroon bedsheets. Who is the jackal? (With apologies to the jackals.)

His Holiness today asked Chinese officials to meet with him -- at any place of their choosing. It is also heartening that Britain's new prime minister, Gordon Brown, has announced he would meet with the Dalai Lama in May, his way of applying pressure on the Chinese to stop their crackdown. (It is a refreshing change from the former PM Tony Blair who became the last man standing in supporting the Iraq invasion.)

I offer a few words from the Dalai Lama, taken from the Peacebuilding Summit I attended last October in Atlanta.

Now, all the major religious traditions carry this message .. the message of love and compassion. With that, if some conflict happens, then spiritual reconsideration, tolerance ... and (for) all lifestyles, contentment, self-discipline. These are all wonderful things in society. We really need these things. (When) we posses these things, (when) we keep these things, then families will be more happy, more calm. Also at the community level ... more happy, more calm.

Therefore ... various religious traditions have the same potential to provide these good things, not necessarily to convert... so I think our work here in the religious field is not for propagating religion .. but to take those valuable things that come from religion and that should be propagated. That is important.

At another level .. a close relation among religious traditions is very important. How can we talk to other people about the importance of compassion when we ourselves are fighting? What do we want them to say? First, you should re-unite.

Visit the Dalai Lama's Web site to read his press releases calling for peace and non-violent solution to this crisis.

(Photo by David Gray / Reuters)
2008-03-20 12:39:10 GMT
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