Dalai Lama: ‘I might not be reincarnated’
The Dalai Lama has been accused of offending Tibetan Buddhism by suggesting that he might not be reincarnated after he dies.
According to this report, the head of Tibet’s regional congress, Padma Choling, said that the Dalai Lama has to return, just as he has done for generations.
Whether [the Dalai Lama] wants to cease reincarnation or not … this decision is not up to him. When he became the 14th Dalai Lama, it was not his decision.
He was chosen following a strict system dictated by religious rules and historical tradition and also with the approval of the central government.
Can he decide when to stop reincarnating? That is impossible. What he wants is to distort reality. It’s impossible in my view. Tibetan Buddhism follows tradition. If he goes ahead with this there will be division.
Tibetan Buddhists believe the soul of a senior lama is reincarnated in the body of a child on his death.
The Dalai Lama was chosen as the head of his religion as a boy. He fled his homeland in 1959 after a failed uprising against Chinese rule.
The second most powerful figure in Tibetan Buddhism is the Panchen Lama.
In 1995, the Dalai Lama named a boy in Tibet as the reincarnation of the previous Panchen.
But Chinese officials took the boy away and chose their own Panchen Lama, Gyaltsen Norbu, above.
He was named by Beijing as the reincarnation of the Panchen Lama when he was six, but he is not recognised by followers of the Dalai Lama. The consider him to be a fake.
The Dalai Lama has said his title could end when he dies, signalling to Tibetans that whoever the Chinese government chooses to replace him after his death would be an imposter.
Padma Choling said:
I think [the Dalai Lama] is actually profaning religion and Tibetan Buddhism. He says ‘no reincarnation’, so it’s no reincarnation? The crux of this issue, where the problem really lies, is that he wants to try and take away the central government’s rights on reincarnation.