For Immediate Release
Canada Tibet Committee launches resource centre for Buddhists with message from Dalai Lama
(Montreal, Wednesday, 20 January 2010) – “Unless there is freedom in Tibet, then a flourishing Buddhism in Tibet is impossible” is the message that His Holiness the Dalai Lama brings to a new resource centre for Canadian Buddhists launched today by the Canada Tibet Committee (CTC).
The CTC spoke at length with the Dalai Lama last October on the critical role Buddhists can play in helping to bring religious freedom to Tibet. The CTC’s resource centre hopes to respond to a misconception among a few that Buddhism is incompatible with political activities.
Resources on the CTC website include a short video presentation and the full audio of the CTC’s interview with the Dalai Lama, and reports and news articles on the dire state of religious freedom in Tibet today. The centre is at www.tibet.ca/dharma
“With organizations like the CTC and other similar groups, every Buddhist in Canada has a shared duty with us to help bring religious freedom to Tibet,” said CTC executive director Dermod Travis today.
“Six million Tibetan Buddhists deserve no less from us. Whether it’s attending a vigil, helping to organize an event, speaking at a temple or writing your MP, Tibetans desperately need to hear our collective voice now.”
And in 2009, the U.S. State Department’s International Religious Freedom Report detailed the extent to which Chinese authorities interfere in the depth of study of Tibetan Buddhism, including limiting the number of monks at monasteries, limiting where monks can travel for religious training, co-opting the education of young reincarnated lamas and pressuring government employees to withdraw their children from all forms of religious education.
It detailed severe restrictions on religious freedom for ordinary Tibetans, including sanctions against people for displaying spiritual devotion to the Dalai Lama, or to the 11th Panchen Lama, and the numerous cases of monks, nuns and lay people, who were “subjected to extrajudicial punishments, such as beatings and deprivation of food, water, and sleep for long periods.”
The Canada Tibet Committee is an independent non-governmental organisation of Tibetans and non-Tibetans living in Canada, who are concerned about the continuing human rights violations and lack of democratic freedom in Tibet.
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