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People's Daily Online>>Opinion

Tibetan self-immolation violates Buddhism

By Li Decheng (People's Daily Overseas Edition)

17:04, December 01, 2011

Edited and translated by People's Daily Online

Several Tibetan monks recently set fire to themselves in Tibetan-inhabited areas of Sichuan province. It is astonishing that the monks, who shoulder the responsibility of doing good deeds in society and aiding all beings, have adopted such uncivilized, cruel and extreme means. Their suicidal practices have not only seriously violated the core Buddhist code of ethics but also have trampled on basic tenets of Buddhism.

No killing is the first precept of Buddhism and must never be violated. Whatever the causes are, both the commitment of suicide and the incitement or encouragement of suicide are against this principle and constitutes a serious crime.

Therefore, the self-immolations of the monks were against natural and social ethics as well as the first tenet of Buddhism. In Buddhism, particularly Tibetan Buddhism, scripture has never encouraged killings and suicide, nor has Buddhist dogma incited others to carry out killings or commit suicide.

After the incidents, certain people with ulterior motives deliberately misinterpreted the fundamental principles of Buddhism and argued that self-immolation is “absolutely not in violation of the Buddhist tenet of not killing.” However, it has been clearly stated in Buddhist scriptures that taking lives, including killing others and oneself, runs counter to the fundamental Buddhist principle of not killing. The ridiculous statement by those with ulterior motives has fully exposed their vicious intentions.

Cherishing life and opposing suicide have become principles upheld worldwide. Self-immolations by religious believers and followers have become a symbol and embodiment of evil and are disallowed and condemned in most countries.

It is the common aspiration of people of all countries to combat religious extremism as well as terrorist activities in the name of region. All upright and kind people will denounce the monks who did not cherish their own lives and burned themselves to death.


Leave your comment4 comments

  1. Name

Deepak at 2011-12-03218.186.9.*
Tibetans self immolate themselves when they have a grievance. The likes of Lashkar and Jaish Mohammed do that to others in the situation. To club the two even under the banner of religious extremism is crazy if not downright mad.
Genuine Buddhist at 2011-12-03221.127.44.*
Look up Buddhist scriptures and read it says about suicide: it is specifically prohibited. Only those under some spell commit the crime of killing, including the killing of oneself.
Chipmunk at 2011-12-02182.72.150.*
Communists taling about religion?
SL at 2011-12-01113.210.100.*
The Chinese Govt should check to see if the temple have been compromised by some kind of subliminal brain washing to induce these monks to self-immolation. Mind control is nothing new. Check MK Ultra...etc.

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