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China makes reincarnation without government permission illegal

No, really, you read it right.  The Chinese government has banned reincarnation without government permission.

In one of history’s more absurd acts of totalitarianism, China has banned Buddhist monks in Tibet from reincarnating without government permission. According to a statement issued by the State Administration for Religious Affairs, the law, which goes into effect next month and strictly stipulates the procedures by which one is to reincarnate, is "an important move to institutionalize management of reincarnation."

Actually, despite the article’s claim (and as the article eventually points out), it really isn’t as an absurd of an act as it may seem, even though it is certainly representative of totalitarianism.

In fact, it is all about China’s war with the Dalai Lama.

At 72, the Dalai Lama, who  has lived in India since 1959, is beginning to plan his succession, saying that he refuses to be reborn in Tibet so long as it’s under Chinese control. Assuming he’s able to master the feat of controlling his rebirth, as Dalai Lamas supposedly have for the last 600 years, the situation is shaping up in which there could be two Dalai Lamas: one picked by the Chinese government, the other by Buddhist monks.

We can all figure out how that will work. 

The Chinese communists surface very visibly every now and then as if to remind everyone that China is far from a free country.  And, in such a totalitarian country, no detail is too small for the government to ignore … even something in which it likely doesn’t even believe.

~McQ

Twitter: @McQandO

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10 Responses to China makes reincarnation without government permission illegal

  • I suspect their purpose is to have license to arrest the next child the Buddhists declare to be the Lama for ‘illegally’ reincarnating, rather than setting up one of their very own. They clearly can’t control what the Buddhists do but it’s reasonable to assume they CAN sort of play Herrod the Great and round up the appropriate male children as the testers narrow down who the re-incarnated Lama is.

    “Ah, your re-incarnation permit please, no? You must come with us.” Talk about putting an end to their problem at it’s source… Unless of course the Lama is willing to come back as someone other than a Tibetan on this turn of the wheel, and re-incarnates outside of the Chinese zone of control.

  • Speaking as a lawyer…THAT would be one tough burden of proof…!!! Not that a Chinese court would be troubled by such nit-picking.

    • @Ragspierre They just wait till the monks have gotten together and point him out – there’s the whole testing thing they do, which I don’t begin to understand, but after 600 years they have down to a form of science. They seem pretty confident they’re getting it right. How do the Chinese suddenly inject a bunch of Buddhist ‘experts’ into that mix to claim one of their own. I’m not sure it benefits them to set up something akin to an Avignon Pope if no one is paying attention to it except them. Nor am I not sure they haven’t studied something about Buddhist philosophy that might give them a Buddhist equivalent of a “render unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s and render unto God that which is Gods” sort of situation that makes it acceptable, even to the Buddhists, for the new, young, Lama to become a long term guest of the People’s Republic.

      • Nope, I guess the Chinese have been maintaining only they can select the next Lama for a while. Sounds like they do intend to set up a pretender.

    • @Ragspierre The flip side is – man, how would you like to have to select the new Lama from the world population outside Tibet!

      • @looker They could pull off a coup and name the Pope… THAT would be FUN to watch…

        • @Ragspierre “They could pull off a coup and name the Pope”
          All that currency they been banking gotta be good for sumptin!

          “Now introducing, his eminence Shong Ti Woo the First, Bishop of Rome, Supreme Pontiff of the Universal Church, and President of the United States”

        • @looker I wanna see the Chinese marshals serve the arrest warrant for the Pope on the Swiss Guard. That would be GOLD…!!!

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