News from Tibet
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On the third day of the preliminary teachings of Kalachakra Initiations at Bodhgaya on January 7, 2017, the Dalai Lama began from the remaining part of the 5th chapter [Guarding awareness] of "Shantideva's Guide to the Bodhisattva's Way of Life" and ended with its 8th chapter [the practice of meditative concentration] and then continued the remaining part of "Acharya Kamalashila's Second Volume of the Stages of Meditation"
On the second day of the preliminary teaching of Kalachakra Intiations in Bodhgaya, the Dalai Lama led an "Inter-Faith Gathering" of major religious traditions of the world. The program was held as a part of the His Holiness' life long commitment of promotion of religious harmony in the world. The head priest of the Golden Temple of Sikh at Amritsar, Akal Takht Jathedar Gyani Gurbhajan Singh; Jain Muni Acharya Lokeshcharya; representative of Islam, Maulana Asinul Rehman; and Swami Chidanand Maharaj as representative of Hindu and others recited prayers for the well being of all human beings and preservation of the environment.
Thousands of devotees of the Kalachakra teaching in Bodh Gaya were given a free entry to the traditional Tibetan opera performance on Epic of Buddha. Kunga, an audience at the event tells VOA's Tibetan Service that performers of the Dharamsala based TIPA (Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts) presented public shows to reconnect the Tibetan audience to their traditional heritage and to reinvigorate their spiritual aspirations.
According to a new study published in the journal Science, through analysis of human handprints and footprints left in stone at Tibetan plateau, it was discovered that the earliest settlement on the Tibetan plateau could have been 13,000 years ago contrary to previous studies that established it at about 5,200 years.
Eight Tibetan singers, who hail from different parts of the world with various background, age, and singing career in exile have released their music albums at the Kalachakra initiation in Bodh Gaya. With the massive crowd at the religious gathering in mind, some artist are releasing their first album, while others are veteran singers and performers releasing their third or fourth albums. Switzerland based Nelung Tsering Topdhen released his third Tibetan circle dance album called, 'Gangchen Bhope Tenpa,' while Toronto based Passang Lhamo released her third album, 'Love' and New Delhi based Wangdak Dorjee came out with his second album, 'Oneness'. Other artists included New Delhi based singer Shajang Sonam Tsering who is releasing his second music album called, 'Missing Home', Nepal based Tenzin Jigme releasing his third music album, 'Kyabney' and Switzerland based Jamyang Choeden who is also scheduled to release his latest and fourth music album, 'Soft Tibetan Melody.' Kathmandu, Nepal based Sonam Topdhen and Samdup Dorjee are releasing their first albums, 'Norbu Shug Yoe' and 'Gongsa Chok' respectively.
Tibet's spiritual leader, the 14th Dalai Lama began his preliminary teachings on "Bodhisattva's Way of Life" by Acharya Shantideva and "The Second Volume of the Stages of Meditation" by Kamalashila in Bodh Gaya on January 5, 2016. More on the report below:
The Tibetan Youth Congress (TYC) Information and Announcement Center is the most sought after center for the devotees who have come to receive the 34th Kalachakra initiations from the Dalai Lama at Bodhgaya. The help center has been running from December 21, 2016 and will continue till the initiations ends. Full report below:
China imposed new border restrictions in Tibetan border regions Sunday, citing risks from terrorism, but the new measures also come as Tibetan's spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, begins a popular Buddhist teaching event in India. The Chinese state-run Global Times newspaper reported Monday that the new measure is aimed at combating the risk of ‘terrorism’ and ‘separatism’ in the region. Critics say authorities frequently invoke such fears when imposing new security restrictions on Tibetans, and Tibetan exile news media say there are signs the measures are aimed more at preventing Tibetans from traveling than improving security. The new regulation was first announced in December by Tibet Daily, an official Tibetan language news outlet, which said it would take effect on January 1, 2017; however, the Tibetan language articles did not use the word terrorism as reason to make the restriction. On December 15, Tibet Daily quoted Bagdro, the deputy head of Tibet border police force, as saying the “renewed” regulation focuses on restricting movements in border areas and stabilizing the region through economic and social development. According to Tibet Post, a Dharamsala-based newspaper, the Chinese officials have confiscated passports of many Tibetans in Tibet in recent weeks. The Dalai Lama is beginning teachings known as the Kalachakra in Bodh Gaya, India on Tuesday. It is the spiritual leader's most popular Buddhist teaching and is held at a holy site that’s believed to be where Buddha attained his enlightenment. China has been showing particularly sensitivity to Tibetans from Tibet attending Kalachakra teachings in India by the Dalai Lama. According to Tibetan exile media reports, hundreds of Tibetans recently traveled to India, but the Chinese officials summoned them back to Tibet before the teaching began. In 2012, thousands of Tibetans were believed to have been detained upon returning from the Kalachakra teaching. Chinese officials did not reveal the number of detainees, but according to International Campaign for Tibet, about 8,000 people from Tibet had attended the teaching in that year. Tightening controls in Tibetan border areas has long been backed by Chinese President Xi Jinping. In 2012, at the 18th Party Conference, Xi said, “To govern the nation, one must govern the borders; to govern the borders, we must first stabilize Tibet.” This statement has since been seen as the foundation of Xi’s Tibet policy.