Dear readers, question. Should ATG have facebook? also, here’s another, how many Tibetans read my blog?
I love love love love this video of Tibetan faces young and old, of immigrants and americans, of nannies and vendors, of cashiers and nurses, of Tibetans being very human and very Tibetan, of New York. Living in a home away from home away from home. Creating and maintaining a sense of self, a sense of community.
an imagined relationship becomes real attachments to a land never touched.
Submission: An non-Tibetan outsider’s perspective on the Dorje Shugden Controversy
The tittle and content was submitted by Kalaya’an Mendoza:
I am not a Tibetan, I was not raised in the Tibetan community or with Tibetan Buddhism as my primary faith. I do not know much about these Shugden worshippers or their faith apart from the literature they pass out, their failed efforts to bring in human rights organizations to verify their allegations of abuse and from the horrid interactions I’ve had with their members. Many if not all of them White/Non-Tibetan. I do not know anything about the nuances in the worship of Dogyal versus other Deities. I don’t understand their stance, their tactics or their unsubstantiated claims of torture and ill treatment by the Tibetan government in exile. In short, I’m an outsider looking in on this issue. But there is one thing that I do know, the people behind these “protests” are worse kinds of agitators and instigators who intentionally provoke the Tibetan community into a furor. They seek to make Gyalwa Rinpoche vis a vis the Tibetan community look bad. They want a photo op, they want a YouTube clip of Tibetans looking angry and yelling and waving Pangdens in the air. They basically want to trigger and incite an oppressed and displaced peoples to be fodder for their self produced “proof” of their so-called repression.
Back in 2008 I saw with my own eyes the insidious nature of these people and their approach, as they baited and trolled Tibetans coming out of a teaching by His Holiness at Radio City Music Hall in NYC. This all happened months after the trauma of a renewed crackdown inside Tibet. Tibetans young and old were looking for solace and peace from the Chinese government occupation in the teachings of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. But instead found mostly White protestors and a few Tibetans holding incendiary and accusatory signs calling His Holiness a “Liar” and a “Dictator”.
What sort of reaction would anyone have to such an attack on the symbol of their faith? Naturally it was shock and hurt, pain that turned into rage. The Shugden worshippers knew exactly what they were doing. When I confronted one of their Inji “nuns” about being completely irresponsible and trying to start a riot, she smiled at me and had one of her fellow “nuns” point a camera at me and an Ama-la who was hysterically crying and screaming at them. It took a line of young Tibetans, Elders and a few allies to hold back the crowd, which soon built up into hundreds of furious people. As soon as the “protesters” got enough footage and photographs they packed up and left in a yellow school bus with a smile leaving nearly a thousand people angry, sobbing and confused.
It was after this incident that I realized their aim was to create a staged atmosphere of being marginalized and bullied. They provoked, manipulated and emotionally scarred nearly a thousand people just to make themselves look like victims to the media. This is absolutely disgusting and all out reprehensible behavior. After this happened I learned from a Nyingmapa friend of mine that to say the name of Shugden is to give him power. I think that falling into the trap that his worshippers laid out gives them power and fuel to defame and derail. Like I said earlier, I am not a Tibetan and as an Ally have no right to prescribe a course of action, but I what I would like to humbly suggest that if and when you see these sad and lost individuals with their idiotic signs, do not respond in kind. Walk past them with dignity knowing that their propaganda and lies are just that. The more they provoke the more we should ignore. They only win, if we let them win.
Feminism is having a wardrobe malfunction.
Does your brand of feminism remove barriers for women, or simply move them around? Does is expand options for women, or does it just shift them? You don’t liberate women by forcing them to choose option B instead of option A. What is comfortable for you might not be comfortable for someone else, and it’s entirely possible that what you see as oppressive, other women find comfortable or even downright liberating.
Before you think the girl in the middle is a strawman, let me tell you I used to be her, back in my misguided youth. I considered myself the standard to which other people should adhere. But that was stupid. It’s not up to me to tell people how to dress, and it’s much nicer to let everyone choose for themselves.
Some women would feel naked without a veil. Some women would find it restrictive. Some women would feel restricted by a bra. Some women would feel naked without one. Some women would feel restricted by a tight corset. Others love them. Some wear lots of clothes with a corset. Some only wear the corset and nothing else. What makes any article of clothing oppressive is someone forcing you to wear it. And it’s just as oppressive to force someone not to wear something that they want to wear.
For the Adele Wild-Blavatsky's (aka Lhasa Apso/@ChomeRinglug the Tibetan blogger poser who turned out not to be Tibetan)of the world that are busy trying to save black women, muslim women and Tibetan women by saving them from themselves by belittling us one stupid blogpost or facebook rants at a time to tell us how savage our cultures and we are. Oh and also to prove how superior her white knowledge (white superiority) is. Proving that they’re promoting their white supremacy and not women like they originally claim.
His Holiness says it’s Ok to be Gay, time to pull the “HH approves” card
In a sit down interview for Larry King Now, His Holiness says same-sex marriage is fine—it’s really bullying and homophobia that is morally wrong.
When asked about homosexuality in general and gay rights (with a lead in from Russia’s current War on Gays), the Dalai Lama responds:
"That’s a personal matter. People who have a special tradition, you should follow according to your own tradition. … But non-believer, that’s up to them. Different form of sex? So long as it’s safe, okay! And fully agreed, okay! Bullied? Abused? That’s what is wrong. That’s a violation of human rights."
When asked about same-sex marriage rights, the Dalai Lama replies:
"That’s up to the countries’ laws. It’s okay, I think individual business. If a couple really feels that way, practical, satisfaction … if both sides fully agree, then okay!"
HH has made his point. Any Tibetan that faces homophobia from here on from other Tibetans, start with, “HH doesn’t approve your homophobia.”
Those at the top use his name for more insidious things, I don’t see anything wrong with us using HH’s position on the bottom also. Besides, using HH’s approval is a pretty useful tool to either shut down harassment or begin a conversation, just sayin…
Submission: Stigma against Tibetan Dorje Shugden practitoners
Hello Angry Tibetan Girl,
This message is in regards to your recent post on the travesty that was the recent Dorje Shugden/Dalai Lama incident. I’d like to point out that I am not a particularly religious person to begin with (that’s a whole other can of worms in the Tibetan community as I’m sure you know) but I am a very socio-politically minded person.
I have been growing increasingly disappointed in the CTA as of recent years but this new information I came across about CTA’s stance on Dorje Shugden really incensed me. I was shocked to learn that the CTA had the balls to go ahead and openly discriminate against Dorje Shugden practicers in the 90s (in the name of Dalai Lama) in direct opposition to the democratic tenet of religious freedom. I can’t accept that we Tibetans can claim to be proud of our democratic practices while openly propping up a regime that continuously leans on religion to guide itself. On top of that, our government has no diversity of ideas which only continues to weaken our stumbling experiment in democracy. Every candidate at the last election had very similar stances on popular issues and many issues that affect the day to day lives of tibetans-in-exile weren’t even recognized. Those in the LGBTQ, minority religious, gender, disabled, and economically disadvantaged communities have no real voice or power in Tibetan politics and it’s a damn shame.
I recently found out that my father’s side of the family are followers of Dorje Shugden. While I knew that there was some sort of controversy regarding Dorje Shugden, I hadn’t realized what it really was or how much it affected my family. As I’m doing more research into it, it infuriates me to learn about the stance many Tibetans, including my friends’ families, have against those who follow Dorje Shugden. After the whole “rude lady shouting at the Dalai Lama” scandal there has been an upswing of comments made by people I know on Facebook, twitter, etc… making disparaging comments against ALL Dorje Shugden followers (not making any distinctions between the W.S.S. and those Tibetans who have practiced it quietly for centuries).
I hate that the CTA and many non-followers class those who follow Dorje Shugden as against the Dalai Lama and as terrorists. Actually, Dorje Shugden is a protector of the Gelug-Pa sect. Thus, Shugden followers are under the Dalai Lama. My father believes the Dalai Lama is above Dorje Shugden, as he was taught by his master. He does not protest against Dalai Lama and he practices quietly. In fact, many Shugden followers do not openly protest (though I’ve always believed in fighting for your rights), or even openly worship. If it were possible to see the true number of Dorje Shugden followers, I’m sure many of those who continue to persecute their fellow countrymen-in-exile would be shocked.
I get really ANGRY that the CTA and those in Dalai Lama’s camp are citing religious sectionalism as a reason to ban Dorje Shugden. It is clear that banning it (through social and political means) is what’s really creating the divide in the exile communities in the first place. The fact that those discriminating are claiming that Dorje Shugden followers are actually on China’s payroll is infuriating as it’s just trying to distract from the issue our society is actually facing by bringing up a more remote possibility. Can’t we as a society own up to our own issues without making everything about the Tibet/China debate or vilifying those who dare to disagree with Dalai Lama? As many have pointed out before, we can’t grow as a society if we lean on the Dalai Lama as a crutch for every issue.
In any case, I just really needed a space to rant about the issues I believe in and I was hoping you could let me know how you feel about this whole issue in terms of tibetan followers (I kind of already get a sense of how you feel about the non-tibetan followers). This message is really rough draft and I’m not quite sure how all the points I’ve made go together but I put it all out there regardless. :)
Another Angry Tibetan Girl
This is sooo complex and complicated. I mean you’ve pretty much laid out how complicated it is for Tibetan practitioners and contrary to the popular belief that Tibetan shugden followers are against HHDL, it seems, from what you’re saying, that Tibetan followers are in fact not against him, and that some even have the same love and respect the rest of us do. I’m sorry that you and your family have to face so much stigmatization regarding a practice that some of you have practiced for centuries.
I personally don’t know much on the subject of shugden except for what i’ve heard here and there about the fucked up shit that’s been taking place on both extreme ends, those against and those for the practice. What I haven’t heard so much is what you are describing, Tibetan practitioners who are in the middle who don’t really relate to the extreme side that wishes harm upon HH nor is this the type of story that the conservative element that stigmatizes shugden followers pay attention to. What you’ve just shared makes me think that the conversation on Tibetan shugden practitioners and what they face need to be had in a mutually respectful and safe environment, instead of all these extreme elements from both sides.
I personally think anyone who wants to follow anything whether it’s deemed beneficial or harmful should have the right to practice whatever they want. But I also think HH has a right to lay down the rules for his own teachings and requesting that those who follow Sugden not attend his teachings. What I don’t agree with is the extreme elements it the Tibetan community that uses his message to attack Tibetan shugden followers. I also don’t agree with the extreme followers of shugden practitioners that attack HH like these white followers who have NO SKIN IN THIS GAME. This is why I find the white followers and their antagonistic behavior towards HH not only harmful for Tibetans but also Tibetan shugden followers.
White shugden followers, such as that woman who harassed HHDL, hijack Tibetan shugden follower’s experience of marginalization in the Tibetan context to serve their own project to humiliate HHDL. This obviously rubs Tibetans the wrong way, some of whom take this offense and rage against Tibetan shugden followers who (such as yourself) had nothing to do with this bullshit in the first place. In the end, these white practitioners action against HHDL offend Tibetans, some of whom use it to further harm Tibetan followers. In the end the white practitioners harms HHDL, Tibetans, and Tibetan shugden followers. That’s what I hate about these followers.
It’s fucked up that in the end you guys get further marginalized not only by the extremists in the Tibetan community but also from the shugden extremist such as this white woman and other white practitioners who picked HH. Their action costs all of us. In the end, they have no stake in this whole thing, its’ us, the Tibetans, non-followers and followers, but the conversation on shugden has unfortunately been shaped by extreme sides on both camps. Thanks for sharing your experience, it complicates how the shugden issue is being talked bout by the extremists in both camps. If anything, it opens my eyes to the complicated nature of some follower’s complex but dedication towards HHDL and also all the bullshit stigmatization you guys have to face.
Excuse me while I take a break from all the food to serenade myself with Wang Gyal and pretend my name is Methok Dolkar.
Ex-pat business owners, quit the “I do it for the people” act
I’ve just about had it with Ex-pats that set up entrepreneurial businesses in communities like Ladakh, Dharamsala, Delhi, Tourist towns in Tibet and try to sell their business as if it’s not there for profits but to uplift community or community members. As if their business is different from other businesses owned and operated by other community members. Somehow their business is different because they’re good at making it seem as if their profit has nothing to do with them but people in the community.
You know, they say stuff like it’s “Fair Trade,” that they create jobs and ethically treat these workers and pay them fairly. There are also those that start businesses that take on political objectives, you know, the types that say they are doing this on behalf of the community to empower community members or pushing forward political agendas of the community. Bla Bla Bla. All the while making a profit at a higher rate because they’re not just selling you a product, they’re selling feel-good bullshit, meaning, buyers are not only buying a product (that they can buy from another local) they get to also buy moral superiority. Because thats what these ex-pat business sell, a product plus the feeling that your money was spent to “help” the community. As if the money doesn’t somehow directly go into their pockets.
But here’s what I don’t get about these do-good Ex-pats. Why do you need to start a business, of which you are the boss, in the first place if your objective is to empower community members? You could use your western influence, networks, connections, currency inflation by investing in community owned and operated co-ops that already exist there. That place community members in empowered roles. Rather than start your own business and place yourself as the one running the show.
Also, all this morally superior high ground that these ex-pat businesses espouse end up stifling workers. How are workers allowed to make grievances if these ex-pat business operate under the message that the business is there in the first place to “help” community members or them directly (even though the profits go in their pockets)? It’s seems a bit awkward if I was a worker who has issues with the boss but can’t say shit because the boss is telling me that his business is there in the first place to help me. That leaves very little room for me to disagree nor does it allow me to bring up issues I may have with the boss or the work or if i feel like something unfair is taking place. How are you suppose to tell someone that may be doing things you’re uncomfortable with (like making you the face of the business to attract more customers) but you’re not allowed to say anything because I’m suppose to feel thankful the whole time. This kind of emotional blackmail is what I mean by the fucked up power dynamic involved in these feel-good businesses that sell their business as if its good for the community and has nothing to do with them (ex-pats) wanting to make a living for themselves.
I personally don’t find anything wrong with Ex-pats owning businesses to make a living
(Even if you do come with western capital in the form of currency, network and even if the money you make (by selling things in the west for example) circulate only within the business you own and not so much in the community….)
But be fucking honest. Why can’t you guys just open a business like anyone else in that community without all these mumbo jumbo bullshit about turning a profit FOR the community. That shit is bullshit and I’m personally tired of it, it’s also insulting that you don’t think some of us can smell the bullshit. You can quit the moral superiority bullshit that you sell with your business. Your cover has been blown to a lot of us, some of us just haven’t told you to your face.
And when I say ex-pat, its not exclusive to white people, its for anyone coming from the west that can use their unfair currency advantage in these places to turn a profit by making it about humanity.
PS helping a few people here and there financially doesn’t change the fact that that “help” you provided in the first place came from the sum you accumulated by selling the community or hijacking their message.
The Shuggie boogie woogies fake Buddhists are baaaaccckkkk
Remember my post rant against white shugden worshipers? Well they’re up to no good again, I know, no surprise there. Ok fine I won’t generalize them, but the ones picketing HH’s visit need to seriously get their shit together. Especially during a sensitive time for Tibetans. Basically its not the right time to antagonize the one person that brings us all together during a tough time.
Anyways, Jamyang Norbu recently wrote this blogpost on one Suggie nun harassing His Holiness which, as you would expect, pissed most of us Tibetans off. I actually saw the video several days back and thought about writing on the subject but then I decided not to, because see, I didn’t want to participate in spreading the hate this nun, calling herself peaceful, is obviously hurling at the one person that so many self-immolators are calling out to as they went up in flames inside Tibet. BUT Jamyang Norbu has a point, where the hell is his security team?
Or more to the point, what security arrangements were there in place to ensure His Holiness’s safety? We all know that over the last decade Western Shugden supporters have picketed his Holiness’s talks and appearances in the West. It was no secret that this time around they would do the same on his California visit. So why weren’t adequate precautions taken. I have written on a number of occasions that Dharamshala should be extremely careful in vetting visitors to the Dalai Lama, not only to ensure His Holiness’s physical safety but also to ensure that nothing untoward, unseemly or embarrassing could happen. One speculation I picked up over the exile grapevine was that the nun managed to get access to His Holiness because she was an inji, a Westerner, it being a given that Tibetans have a harder time getting access His Holiness than a Westerner does.
Ex-pats in non western countries
Along with living in a beautiful place, does it have something to do with wanting to live out colonial dreams accompanied by the unfair advantage of currency inflation and wanting affordable maids and servants that don’t accompany workers rights, that are unavailable in the west? And oh yes, is it also the adulation and civilization and superiority assumed to accompany the white skin by those who are white and the poor?
White supremacy accompanies not only white people, but non-whites from the west that come with currency advantages instituted by imperial institutions (WTO) that champion western capital interest. China’s not far behind. I hear there are a lot of Chinese and White ex-pats living in parts of Tibet nowadays.
My dear Tibetans, Losar Tashi Delek. May this new year bring us closer to freedom
A rising new aristocracy. Competition for power within our political systems. Finding scapegoats to promote themselves (Rangzen). Seems being displaced STILL hasn’t stopped some of us from scheming for power in exile. It’s the same old story.
Submission by heliosphile:
1. Perfume called Sikkim girls- by the way Lush is known as this ethnical, vegan company etc, huge competition to Body Shop. To stereotype Bhutia girls (could be argued not strictly Tibetan depending on semantic and anthropology debates) - heck imagine if it was called Khampa girls or any other type of Tibetan girl.
-also check out the comments
story behind perfume: http://www.gorillaperfume.com/uk/products/10/sikkim-girls
there are loads more blogs, articles etc on the story of the perfume creation and how exotic ppl feel . Oh they’ve made it into a body cream too.
ew WTF. seriously WTF? This is in no way degrading at all. So according to this company, all you have to do to smell like a Sikkimese girl is to buy a perfume named just that? It doesn’t sound objectifying at all. Heck how is it objectifying when you can sell a whole ethnic group, and to top it off, they’re all “girls,” it doesn’t suggest anything lewd at all.
It seems Sikkimese men, women, boys, and old people are not cool or ethnic enough to be sexually objectified by this cool “ethical and vegan” company.
Next time you want to satisfy your exotic and gross fantasy of smelling a Sikkimese girl, i mean girlS, just buy the bottle. Thanks LUSH!