Holiness Shamar Rinpoche, who is a lineage holder of the Karma Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism and the mind manifestation of Amitabha Buddha had an interaction with isikkim.com. In the first part of interview he told us about the Karmapa controversy. In this part he talks about the Tibetans and their movement to gain independence from China
Part I interview
H.H the Dalai Lama was forced to migrate to India and now there is a Government in Exile in India. Many Tibetans are living here and in other parts of the world. Isnâ€™t it a difficult situation where you being a spiritual leader have to perform political duties too and fight the Tibetan struggle for freedom?
Ofcourse it is a difficult situation. But I am not involved so much into Tibetan politics. So far I was not in the exile government and never involved in the affairs of the exile government. I was at Rumtek and during late Karmapaâ€™s time there was not so much cooperation between Rumtek and Dharamsala. Rumtek has always functioned completely as a separate body.
I donâ€™t know what the late Karmapas intention was but he did not involve so much in it. But as far as my knowledge is concerned, he used to say that it is very difficult for Tibetans to be free from Chinese control.
Does that mean Tibetan community will never return to Tibet?
Tibetans do visit to Tibet but they donâ€™t stay there because it becomes difficult for them to adjust in the climate now. Majority of the Tibetans are young and born in India and Nepal. When they go back they donâ€™t have any problem. Now-a-days Tibetan people in China live quite comfortably. They are doing business and becoming richer than those who are here. Monasteries are also doing well in Tibet.
What do you foresee the future of Tibetan struggle for independence or for the autonomous region?
I would say that Dalai Lama administration made one biggest mistake. Former US president George Bushâ€™ relations with Dalai Lama were good. Bush administration was very supportive to Dalai Lama. But Dalai Lamaâ€™s govt. in exile completely relied on Bush administration. US government needs some really strong reasons to support Tibetan cause. Bush government helped because of his relations with Dalai Lama and not because of strong reasons. When Obama administration came in power they couldnâ€™t find any solid reasons. So they couldnâ€™t find enough ground to support the Tibetan cause. China is very important for even US because of many reasons.
Then, Tibetans created problem during Olympics. This annoyed Chinese a lot. Once Chinese get angry they never forget it. Itâ€™s the Chinese nature. So it was a very big mistake to tease China that way. Even if China government had some intentions to relax restriction on Tibet, because of this they got back to their old position.
But when someone forces a large part of community to desert their homeland and migrate, they also have anger issues. Tibetans are refugees not out of choice.
Chinese government is not chasing Tibetans away. This they donâ€™t do. Talking to them peacefully and convincing the leaders of China to give more freedom and autonomy is much better way of dealing with them. But Tibetan exile government already made China government angry and effectively harmed them. Now they will not forget it and will not cooperate for anything.
So what next?
Next everything is result less. No autonomy and no freedom.
China is a threat to India too but instead of taking tough stand Indian Government position on Tibetan issue is also now getting more pro-China
I donâ€™t know much of Indiaâ€™s stand on that but that they have too. Even US government have to please China so India would ofcourse do.
I think Indian government will not tease China. Chinese are angry with India because they allowed Dalai Lama to have exile government here in India.
But Chinese claims large part of Indian Territory as theirs.
China claims on one hand but on the other hand they will not try to capture it. Chinese follow the Mao Zedong directions and their policy is that we will not take one inch of land of others and we will not give one inch of our territory for others. They will never invade any other country if there is no historical record that it belongs to them. Chinese did not manage to claim the Indian territories as theirs during the British rule. Mao already gave up these territory but they still claim it because Indian government allowed Dalai Lama government to function.
What options do the Tibetans have now? What you think they should go for?
All the Tibetans should follow the directions of H.H Dalai Lama and they are doing quite well. Dalai Lamas directions are the only solution. He is the only capable leader for religion and politics. He is the one who feels most about the Tibetan issue. It is very clear to me that whatever direction Dalai Lama is giving is the best any way.
His Holiness thanks a lot for talking to isikkim.com