News / Asia

    China Publishes List of 'Verified Buddhas'

    FILE - Dalai Lama
    FILE - Dalai Lama
    VOA News

    China has published a list of "authentic living Buddhas" of Tibetan Buddhism, saying the move is part of an effort to prevent fraudulent religious leaders from swindling money from believers.

    The Chinese government published a list Monday of 870 "verified" Buddhas on the website of the State Administration for Religious Affairs. The list includes photographs, names, birth dates and resident monasteries.

    China began issuing certificates to what it calls "living Buddhas" in 2010, but this is the first time the information has been accessible on the Internet.

    Critics say the spiritual cataloging is an attempt by the Chinese government to control Tibetan Buddhist leaders as well as the next reincarnation of the Dalai Lama.

    China's state-run Xinhua news agency says the Internet database is an effort to promote transparency in Tibetan Buddhism and to regulate reincarnation issues for living Buddhas.

    Previously, China and the Tibetan government-in-exile have disagreed on the reincarnation of the Panchen Lama, the second most important figure in Tibetan Buddhism, with both appointing different boys to the position in 1995.

    Dalai Lama

    Tibetan Buddhists believe that Buddhas can choose where and when they will reincarnate, or take rebirth in their next life, in order to continue their work of helping people. They believe that anyone can become a Buddha by removing all impurities from the mind through meditation and prayer.

    Previously, the Dalai Lama has said he will decide before he dies on whether the institution of the Dalai Lama should continue. He has said he will consult with the high lamas of Tibetan Buddhist traditions, the Tibetan public and others before deciding.

    However, he said China should have no say in whether he is reincarnated.

    Tibet's government-in-exile has operated from India since 1959, when the Dalai Lama fled Tibet after a failed uprising against Chinese rule.

    China has often accused the Dalai Lama and his followers of advocating Tibetan secession, despite repeated assurances from the Dalai Lama that he is seeking dialogue with China aimed only at establishing Tibetan autonomy.

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    Comment Sorting
    by: Wangchuk from: NY
    January 19, 2016 9:51 AM
    It seems the irony of the atheist CCP establishing a list of "Buddhas" while denying Tibetans freedom of religion & arresting Tibetans who pray to or for the Dalai Lama is lost on the Chinese Govt. We Tibetans are not fooled by the CCP's propaganda & false claims. Tibet will be free again.
    In Response

    by: Anonymous
    January 19, 2016 11:12 AM
    the chinese tried and tried for 1,000 years to invade , to occupy, to make Vietnamese Chinese, yet the Vietnamese threw the nasty agrressor Chinese out time after time .
    One day Tibetans will throw the Chinese invaders out and Tibet will be a free and independent country again.

    by: American Eskimo from: San Jose, USA
    January 19, 2016 12:08 AM
    Tibet was a theocracy with Dalai Lama as GOD and Tibetans were serfs and yet he was awarded a Noble Peace Price by the West.
    Dollar Lama was chased out of town after an INDEPENDENT coup sponsored by CIA. His operation was and is funded by the West.
    Today Tibet is not a democracy but Tibetans are no long slaved to a feudal system, the development initiated by China slowly but surely improve their lives.
    In Response

    by: American Eskimo from: San Jose, USA
    January 19, 2016 12:20 PM
    I stand by my comment. I just received my 50 cents in the mail and laughing all the way to the bank. Comrade Wang of NYC, there is limit to 'freedom' and 'human right' plus USA has her set of house rules and does not apply to John/Jean doe's house. Mr. Anonymous, not to annoy you more, Tibet, Xinjiang, Mongolia, West Philippine Sea, Formosa and those rocks in the East China Sea are all part al will be part of greater China, much like during imperial time.

    Would you agree that Hawaii, Guam, Porto Rico, Alaska and America South West are part of USA? Would you agree that our Native Americans endure worse faith than the Chinese Tibetans? I firmly stand by my comment. Ten-four, over and out.
    In Response

    by: Anonymous
    January 19, 2016 10:32 AM
    Your remark sounds exactly as I would expect from a chinese communist and not from an american . The view is so twisted to fit the Chinese government agenda. The remark also shows your limited knowledge (typical of an ignorant and Chinese comrade ) of the Tibetan's situation and Buddhisms (in this case Tibetan Buddhism)
    -to any Buddhists or Tibetan Buddhists, the Dalai lama is never a God (as per your badmouthing)
    -Tibet a previously independent land and Tibetan a previously independent people ) was invaded and occupied by Chinese around the 1950 until this day.
    -China claiming that it ridding the feudal system in Tibet , but the fact is it imposes itself as the new lord over the Tibetans.
    - what a farce for any government to issue a list and certificates of verified Buddhas , let alone an atheist Communist state to do so. I don't think the Chinese know what shame is anymore .

    In Response

    by: Wangchuk from: NYC
    January 19, 2016 9:49 AM
    Thank you, comrade. Your 50 yuan is in the mail. If old Tibet was so bad why did the CCP sign the 1951 17-Point Agreement guaranteeing the Dalai Lama's traditional rule? Why did Mao greet the Dalai Lama as an honored guest? Why do the majority of Tibetans today revere the Dalai Lama and hate the CCP? The PRC has turned Tibet into a giant police state where Tibetans have no freedom of religion or basic human rights. If you don't believe me, go to Lhasa & hold up a sign for "freedom" or "human rights" & watch how fast you're arrested.

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