In an attempt to undermine the true identity of Tibetans, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has started tweaking policies and rules related to the reincarnation of the Lamas, thus hampering the religious practices of the community.
The reincarnation custom is a very old tradition of Tibetan Buddhism and is a very private and personal custom & practice of the Buddhist devotees and preachers.
According to Tibetan Buddhism, there are numerous lamas, Tulkus, and Rinpoches. And these individuals were always a reincarnation of their previous forms. Since Dalai Lama is the holiest spiritual leader of Tibet, he used to recognize Lamas and tulkus. His Holiness the Jetsun Dampa is considered the third-highest lama in the Tibetan Buddhist hierarchy.
As of now, the 10th Jetsun Dampa was already recognized by His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama. But his identity has been kept a secret due to CCP’s threats, interferences, and the fear of their involvement. Some experts claim that the Jetsun Dampa becomes the next potential person who could recognize the next Dalai Lama. Because as of now the Panchen Lama is not there, Jetsun Dampa will be a very crucial figure in this matter. Many people who understand the unique spiritual relationship between the Mongolians and Tibetans would consider this fact of the utmost importance. As stated above, the 10th Jetsun Dampa is not revealed mainly due to China, The Singapore Post stated, citing sources.
China started interfering in the Tibetan religious sphere thinking that this would undermine their true identity and the major concern of China lies in His Holiness’s reincarnation. Their absurd claim includes their role in recognizing the next Dalai Lama and saying only their approval of the 15th Dalai Lama would be the legitimate Dalai Lama.
CCP gradually started initiating policies and rules concerning the reincarnation of Lamas which hurt Tibetan sentiments and religious beliefs.
According to a local media, China passed a national legislation law with regards to reincarnation in 2007 and under this, they not only controlled the Tibetan religious activities but ultimately meddled in the selection of reincarnate lamas.
The law basically excludes any foreign organizations or individuals from the reincarnation selection process in an attempt to legitimize China’s authority and exclude the Tibetan diaspora on this matter, the local media added.
Under the regime, the individuals are required to submit an “application for reincarnation” for government approval as this is aimed at His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama and his future reincarnations.
China has always interfered in the matters of Tibet and has strongly condemned them from exercising their spiritual practices. However, for the Tibetans and the believers of Tibetan Buddhism, His Holiness is their ultimate spiritual guide, so the Chinese government’s game of planning to interfere in this matter means nothing.
China continues to sinicize Buddhism in Tibet as the Chinese authorities recently imposed a ban on sharing religious content on social media, including the app WeChat.
President Xi Jinping had also called for action against those who speak against the government policy on religion and asked for punitive action against those who use social networks for religious purposes.