When Dalai Lama faced a ‘deadly’ question!March 10th, 2009 - 5:20 pm ICT by IANS
Dharamsala (Himachal Pradesh), March 10 (IANS) “When would you want to die?” is not the kind of question that most people would like to face. But when Tibetan Buddhist spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, was asked this ‘deadly’ one Tuesday, he was hardly annoyed.
“I have no power to control my death. I don’t know when but certainly not tonight. That is 99 percent sure,” the Dalai Lama, 73, laughed in his trademark child-like style in his reply to the question asked by a Swedish mediaperson in Mcleodganj near here Tuesday.
“Death is out of my control. Last year, I went through surgery after the gall bladder stone went out of control,” he said. But the Tibetan leader asserted that he would like to live and serve the Tibetan cause for “as long as I can”.
Another surprise for the Dalai Lama was when a Chinese journalist, who got up to ask a question, instead ended up showing support for the Tibetan cause, even referring to the Dalai Lama as “father”.
The journalist said he had been part of the Tiananmen Square protest by Chinese students in 1989 and had migrated to New Zealand in 2002. “But I continue to hold my Chinese passport,” the journalist said as he held it for everyone to see during his 10-minute conversation with the Dalai Lama.
“I have said it before that even I am ready to hold a Chinese passport provided the Chinese leadership gives genuine autonomy to Tibetans in their territory. I am not seeking independence,” the Dalai Lama said.
Dharamsala in Himachal Pradesh is the abode of the Tibetan-government-in-exile headed by the Dalai Lama, who has lived in India since 1959. Tuesday marked the 50th anniversary of a Tibetan uprising against Chinese rule.