To mark the 25th anniversary of the award of the Nobel Peace Prize to the Dalai Lama on December 10, 2014, several Chinese writers, lawyers, scholars and political activists have sent messages highlighting his contribution. These have been published on Chinese news websites, including in Boxun. ICT has translated four of them into English.
From Yan Jiaqi, former political advisor to Premier Zhao Ziyang
The Dalai Lama has great love in his heart, with three aspects: one is his selflessness, with over half a century of endlessly striving for Tibetan rights, Sino-Tibetan unity, and peace in China and the world. The second is his compassionate spirit, comprised of the fair and broad-minded way he treats people equally. The third is his spirit of non-violence.
The Dalai Lama’s influence over the Tibetan cultural sphere and the entire world isn’t limited to Tibetan religious faith, but is also related to his personal noble character.
Exile was an option of last resort for the Dalai Lama, but despite this predicament His Holiness has always been able to play his role as Tibet’s spiritual leader, and fifty-five years into his exile he has made three great contributions for Tibetans and all mankind:
First, spreading Tibetan Buddhism across the world.
Second, the Dalai Lama is the defender of Tibetan rights, proposing the Middle Way Approach, the core of which is defending Tibetan rights and maintaining Sino-Tibetan unity. Over 55 years in exile he has pushed Tibetan cultural circles in India and Europe towards the path of democratization and modernity.
Third, the Dalai Lama is an advocate of interfaith dialogue and solidarity, and a defender of world peace.
– Yan Jiaqi, who met the Dalai Lama in Paris less than a week after he received the Nobel Peace Prize, was the first director of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences Political Science Institute, currently living in the Washington area.
From Chen Guangcheng, human rights lawyer
This International Human Rights Day is the 25th anniversary of when His Holiness the Dalai Lama was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Herein I would like to offer my sincere congratulations to His Holiness on the 25th anniversary of receiving this honor! His Holiness has for a long time consistently advocated his peaceful and nonviolent philosophy, proposed resolving the Tibet issue through the Middle Way Approach, thereby protecting traditional Tibetan culture. By continuously promoting the idea of peace across the world, and advocating tolerance and brotherhood, he has made a tremendous contribution to peace in China and the rest of the world.
To date, His Holiness’s idea of peace and tolerance still hasn’t put a stop to the desecration of universal values and human dignity practiced by repressive regimes. But with advances in information technology, I hope His Holiness will put more energy into influencing ordinary Chinese people so that they come to understand the philosophy and tolerance of his position, advocating genuine autonomy under the Chinese constitution for Tibet instead of independence. Fraternal human rights values can reverse the Chinese Communist Party’s media propaganda meant to give common people the erroneous idea that the Dalai Lama is calling for Tibetan independence. This would play a very important role in China’s peaceful turn towards democracy.
– Chen Guangcheng, Senior visiting scholar at Catholic University, Witherspoon Institute Senior Fellow for Human Rights Issues, senior advisor for the Lantos Human Rights and Justice Foundation, currently living in Washington, DC.
From Teng Biao, human rights lawyer
The Dalai Lama is an important leader for the movement to promote peace and nonviolence, and he has made outstanding contributions towards promoting democracy for the Tibetan people, fighting to give Tibetan people autonomy, promoting exchanges and reconciliation between the Tibetan and Chinese ethnicities, advocating ethnic unity and religious tolerance, and promoting the human soul and harmonious self-liberation.
A prelude to the collapse of the tyrannical Communist regime began in 1989, when Chinese students and citizens made their great sacrifice. The Dalai Lama, who had recently been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, said that the efforts of these victims were not made in vain. Over the next 25 years democracies have become more and more numerous, while tyrannical regimes still act perversely. Communist China has a powerful economy and military, but it has rejected political civilization, wantonly abusing the freedom and dignity of all human beings. People of all ethnicities, particularly Tibetans and Uyghurs, are suffering enormous human rights disasters under Chinese Communist rule. Politicians from around the world either treat it casually, or turn a blind eye. In this cynical world, in an international order in need of thorough reform, there are too few world leaders who incessantly call for freedom and human rights like the Dalai Lama.
The awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to the Dalai Lama was an important even which must be remembered. I would like to express my highest respect and sincere congratulations to His Holiness!
– Teng Biao, human rights lawyer, Chinese independent PEN member, Harvard University visiting scholar, currently in Boston.
From Su Xiaokang, writer
The 14th Dalai Lama has performed miracles, not only spreading Tibetan Buddhism to the world before it went extinct, but also using Buddhism to give rise to harmonious ethics between man and nature, a universal value. For China, which is experiencing an exploitative “economic takeoff” by plundering the environment, there is a need for new cultural values and resources to repair the social and ecological damage. Chinese civilization has an old tradition of going west to find the Dharma, and today’s west lies on the Tibetan plateau.
-Su Xiaokang, Chinese exile writer, currently living in Delaware.