Aug 15, 2018 | Updated: 01:42 PM EDT

Tibetan Government on Dalai Lama's Desire Not to Reincarnate: "It's Not His Decision"

Mar 16, 2015 11:35 AM EDT

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The Dalai Lama has been accused by a senior government official of betraying Tibet and Buddhism. This accusation came after the Dalai Lama suggested that he will not incarnate.

According to Tibetan Buddhism, the soul of a senior lama is reborn in a child after death. Therefore, the Dalai Lama has to choose a child in which he will reincarnate after his death.

But Tenzin Gyatso, the present Dalai Lama, has suggested that he will not reincarnate. According to him the Tibetans don't need a Dalai Lama anymore. "If a weak Dalai Lama comes along, then it will just disgrace the Dalai Lama," he told German newspaper Welt am Sonntag. He also said that if he will be reborn, he will never be incarnated in Tibet if the country is not free and no one has the right to choose his heir for political ends. In the statement he also specified the Chinese government. The Dalai Lama has been living in exile since 1959.

This decision of the Dalai Lama has not been accepted by the Chinese government.

"Whether [the Dalai Lama] wants to cease reincarnation or not ... this decision is not up to him," said Mr Padma Choling, the Tibet regional governor. "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."

The followers of the Dalai Lama are afraid that the Chinese government will appoint the heir of the present Dalai Lama after his death as the Chinese government has stated that it has the right to sign off on reincarnations. Previously, the Chinese government has taken away the boy whom the Dalai Lama has incarnated as Panchen Lama and chose their own Panchen Lama, the second highest authority in Tibetan Buddhism. 

"If the central government had not approved it, how could he have become the 14th Dalai Lama? He couldn't. It has a serious procedure," said Mr. Padma to Reuters. "I think that, in fact, he is profaning religion and Tibetan Buddhism".

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