Swans Commentary » swans.com April 23, 2007  



Lies And Other Untruths


by Milo Clark





"The power of guns is not often compatible with truth and very much depends on untruths or lies. So, with guns, there are usually lies and destruction. When governments keep so many state secrets, this is a sign of weakness, despite military strength. If a government is compelled to keep secrets from its own people, this is a sign of weakness."
—Tenzin Gyatso, Fourteenth Dalai Lama


(Swans - April 23, 2007)   The once United States of America now suffers under the most secretive executive administration in its history. This administration depends strongly on military strength, perhaps secretly understanding their weaknesses. It has led the country into two presently ongoing wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. The reasons given for these wars are heavily burdened with specious rationales, now lying exposed. Even the most rabid of supporters are now questioning them.

These wars exact a terrible burden on the nation. Alternative uses for untold billions are spurned. Repair infrastructure? No. Build schools? No. Improve healthcare? No. Expand social services? No. Take care of veterans? No.

Tenzin Gyatso, fourteenth Dalai Lama, is of my generation in terms of years, although far, far removed from whatever concerns most Americans have. After more than fifty years in exile, he holds firmly to truth as the path that will free Tibet from the Han Chinese of PRChina who invaded in 1949-50.

His views on history and most everything are conditioned by his Buddhism. He was intensely educated and drilled in Buddhism, maturing with an equivalent of a doctoral degree in his religion. At age 16, he was thrown into the temporal world as administrative leader of a Tibet under invasion.

Throughout his life, from childhood forward, he has meditated many hours each day. The perspectives gained allow him to view people and events on many levels, common and uncommon.

Two cardinal facets of Buddhism are wisdom and compassion. Tenzin Gyatso holds tenaciously to non-violent perspectives, firmly believing that violence solves nothing. Equally firmly, he is unbowed in holding compassion for those who have so brutally decimated Tibet.

Understanding the history of Tibet and its neighboring regions opens perspectives rarely available to Americans. For the last several centuries, China was not controlled by Chinese but rather by Manchus. The Manchus (remember Manchuria?) swarmed down from the north and overwhelmed China installing their emperors who held sway for nearly 300 years until Sun Yat Sen led a revolt in 1911. The Chinese then fought each other -- warlords, nationalists, communists -- until 1949 when Mao emerged victorious. Almost immediately, Mao launched armies to the north and west, south and southwest. He installed PRChinese provinces in most areas. Mongolia was set up as an autonomous enclave. Tibet was enslaved most viciously.

A strong manifestation of PRChinese world power is the weak-backed denial of nearly all nations, UN included, related to Tibet. America, Great Britain, Soviet Russia, India, et al., bought the PRChinese lies and made them their own. Shame is sacrificed to greed as now all bow and scape, kowtow, to the PRChinese economic juggernaut.

Can you think of any other world figure who stands for truth more strongly than Tenzin Gyatso?

In the years since the PRChinese invasion of Tibet, a people once so insular has burst out spectacularly. Tibet's Buddhism now circles the globe in adherents, temples, and monasteries abound, works are translated and widely available. In 1989, the Nobel Peace Prize went to Tenzin Gyatso.

He looks out to the uncommon side of realities and sees a future within which once again truth may prevail. We who appear buried by rampant untruth may also look to a brighter future.


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Milo Clark on Swans (with bio).



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Swans -- ISSN: 1554-4915
URL for this work: http://www.swans.com/library/art13/mgc206.html
Published April 23, 2007