Saturday, August 30, 2008
Statement of the Kashag on the occasion of worldwide fasting and prayer service on 30 August 2008
Today on 30 August 2008, the last day of the sixth month of Earth-Mouse Year in Tibetan Calendar, Tibetan Solidarity Committee appealed the Tibetans, Tibet supporters and peace loving people all over the world to observe a symbolic fasting and prayer service for 12-hours. We are immensely fortunate and grateful that His Holiness the Dalai Lama has consented to take part in person here, but due to a slight indisposition this could not happen. However, His Holiness is observing the fasting and prayer from Mumbai today and we convey our immense gratitude and respect to him.
The Kashag of the Central Tibetan Administration would like to heartily thank all the Tibetans, Tibet Supporters and those believing in non-violence who are taking part to observe this symbolic fasting and prayer service.
This activity is not a protest led by hatred, rancour and anger but by the teachings of the Lord Buddha in all the vehicles to refrain from harming others and do everything to benefit others with love and compassion, which is the essence of spiritual practice. Mahatama Gandhi has shown us with his practical demonstration that this is not only for spiritual practice but it can very well apply to the politics for the benefits of society and nations. Our effort of today symbolises that this method is effectively relevant in the post-modern world also.
Due to the consistent effort and guidance of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to pursue non-violent methods to resolve the Tibetan issue, it has been many years that most of the Tibetan movements remained free from gross physical violence. This garnered immense support from around the world for the just cause of Tibet. Our pursuit of non-violence has not only enabled us to keep alive the Tibetan issue but also compelled the People's Republic of China to respond to our policy of rapprochement irrespective of their sincerity. However, on account of some Tibetans being not able to completely give up violence in vocal expressions and thoughts, all our efforts till today instead of achieving a genuine result, is stuck in a vicious circle. If all the Tibetans have a genuine aspiration to resolve the just cause of the Tibetan issue, we have to strengthen our commitment and reinforce the power of non-violence. It is hard to achieve any results in resolving the Tibetan cause unless anger of the Tibetans subsides. Therefore, we take this opportunity to strongly appeal to all the Tibetans and particularly to the monks and nuns to get rid of any visible hatred and anger, and make every effort to develop undiluted thought leading to the cultivation of non-violence and thereby all our physical and vocal expressions become non-violent.
By observing this symbolic fasting and prayer service if we Tibetans are able to make way to advance a step further in pursuit of our non-violent movement, it is worth observing. Otherwise, if it turns into an opportunity that arouses feelings of hatred and anger, it is then, as the saying goes, "sending ransom to the west when the demon lies in the east".
On this special occasion, we hope that the observation of fasting and prayer by numerous people around the world will help the Tibetans to do away their bad karmic action and enhance meritorious virtues. This virtue may help Tibetans to get rid of their anger and hatred towards all sentient beings, especially the PRC authorities who oppress and torture the Tibetans and instead could help us to respond to them with love and compassion. Our sincere practice of non-violence will ultimately help change the mind of the PRC authorities to more compassionate. We hope and pray that all will firmly believe in non-violence. We strongly appeal to all the Tibetans to put concerted non-violent efforts to bring natural end to the torture and persecution in Tibet.
We pay our condolence and homage to those who lost their lives and those who are imprisoned, tortured and beaten in the recent uprisings in Tibet. We pray that the lives sacrificed by the Tibetans become worthwhile and end the torture to the innocent Tibetans. We also pray and sympathise for the victims of the earthquakes in Sichuan and the one in South-western Tibet recently and the disaster caused by flood in some other part as well. We end with the prayers for His Holiness the Dalai Lama's long life and may the just cause of Tibet prevail.
30 August 2008
N.B. Translated from the Tibetan original