Reflections on a Wandering Life.....

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Heard a discussion on the BBC today regarding the 11th Panchen Lama. The 11th Panchen Lama was chosen by the Dali Lama. But the government of China did not accept this, so they named their own choice, and kidnapped the one chosen by the Dali Lama. The eleventh Panchen Lama, who is now 15 years old, has been held under house-arrest, or some such confinement since he was kidnapped in 1995.

It was interesting to hear the interview with officials in Beijing, who insisted that the boys parents really don't want to speak to foreign reporters. As if they could possibly express any other preference. But more absurd is the idea that an atheistic government could take it upon itself to select the Panchen Lama. One would think they would just disavow the one selected by the Dali Lama. But they chose their own.

This whole thing is just one more reminder that China is a controlled society, and that the government believes that it has the responsibility to control the belief patterns of the Chinese people.

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