Dalai Lama Decks Photographer
in Disco Melee
NEW YORK — An angry and visibly intoxicated Dalai Lama was arrested early this morning after assaulting a photographer outside the newly revamped Studio 54 discotheque in Manhattan.
Charged with assault and battery, the Buddhist leader, whose real name is Gelong Tenzin Gyatso was released on $1,500 bail. The incident marked his third brush with the law in as many weeks.
According to witnesses, the Precious Sovereign, 61, who had been drinking heavily all evening, punched and kicked New York Post photographer Mike Pallas several times after Pallas attempted to take his picture exiting the famed disco.
"As soon as he saw that camera, he just went off," said bouncer Todd Gehr, who was guarding the exit at the time. "I grabbed him by his saffron prayer robe and pulled him off [Pallas]. He tried chanting for a minute, but then more flashbulbs started popping, and he completely lost it again."
Witnesses say that instead of backing down, Pallas made the mistake of ridiculing the central belief of Lamaist Buddhism — that through reincarnation, the same soul has occupied the bodies of 14 successive rulers.
"That did it," Studio 54 patron Larry Hoffman said. According to Hoffman, the Dalai Lama then yanked Pallas's camera away and wielded it threateningly at him shouting, "You like picture? You want to eat camera, picture boy?"
Signs of trouble came hours earlier, when the 14th religious and temporal ruler of Tibet shouted repeated requests for "[Kate] Bush! I want to hear plenty more Bush!" When the club DJ responded by playing KC and the Sunshine Band's "Shake your Booty" the monk threw a shotglass through the control booth and invited the DJ to "step outside and kiss the five fingers of enlightenment."
In addition to the charges against him, the Dalai Lama was cited for resisting arrest. At first, he refused to give his real name, claiming to be "the protector, the emanation and the presence on earth of Chenrezi," the Buddhist personification of divine compassion. "And if you not believe," he added, "you let me out of these cuffs and you get one-way ticket to Nirvana plenty quick."
When asked where he was born, he responded, "In 1936 in Chija Nangso, Tibet ... and also in 1876 in Lhasa, Tibet, ... and also in Nai-tung, Tibet, ..." before being gagged and taken away.
Two weeks ago, the Tibetan leader was arrested for driving while intoxicated, though his lawyer maintained his client's high spirits were due solely to a "very satisfying night of meditation." Last Friday, he was stopped in his 1994 Lexus by a New Jersey state trooper for "making gestures to a police official that had no connection with the Noble Eightfold Path." Both times he was released on bail.
From The Onion (campus humor magazine) Volume 30, issue 7,
article on front cover, between articles
"New Solar System Discovered Four Feet from Earth", and
"Posters of Naked Women Fail to Draw Real Naked Women to Dorm Room".
Most, but not all readers, will understand that the above is a piece of humorous irreverence which (presumably) was not intended as disrespectful of H. H. the Dalai Lama. I did once receive an email message along the lines of "How dare you make fun of the Dalai Lama!" — clearly from someone who views His Holiness much as a devout Catholic views the Pope. I replied saying that, from what I know of H.H. he would not be offended by this so why should she? And I wished her success in her progress through the ten bhumis of bodhisattvahood.
However, with the passage of years, one has to wonder about the Dalai Lama. While apparently intelligent, wise and compassionate (as naturally befits an incarnaton of Avalokiteshvara), he seems somewhat ineffectual. Along with other Tibetan lamas he recites the usual platitudes about all beings wanting to be happy (how profound!), and how we should all be compassionate toward each other (love those liars, cheats and thieves!) and renounce all violence both in thought and deed, but what has he ever really done to merit the award of his Nobel peace prize? It is not enough simply to be an object of veneration.
So, given his intelligence and enormous sense of compassion, why doesn't the Dalai Lama question the leader of the free world [then George W. Bush] about the downside of globalization? About "Star Wars II" and the Bush administration's flagrant disregard of the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty? About the unlawful attack on Iraq? Civilian body counts? Why doesn't he even pose such questions rhetorically in the media? Could it really be that this esteemed 68-year-old monk is so focused on inner change ... that he hasn't done his homework on the big political issues? When it comes to geopolitical and global economic matters, is the Dalai Lama living in peaceful ignorance in the suburbs of reality?Perhaps the answer is that, for Buddhists, the world is basically an illusion, unreal compared to the ultimate truth of nirvana and shunyata, not worth fighting about because, after all is said and done, it doesn't really exist.
— Adrian Zupp, Why Won't the Dalai Lama Pick a Fight? [Page removed (censored?) but available here.]
Or for those who prefer a more mundane answer, perhaps he knows which side his bread is buttered on. Cash cows are, after all, sacred.
On 2006-03-31 "Pete" wrote from Alaska:
You must be one of the 97% of Americans, who grew up staring at a TV before even entering school age. Too bad. At that rate, you'll never catch up to the likes of the Dalai Lama and will, therefore never be able to comprehend his actions or non-actions. I hope you'll get some drift if not The drift sometime during your life.
Sorry, Pete, when I started school TV had not even been invented, so you began your comment with a false assumption. And then you continued with some stupid vacuous assertion about "The drift". You are not exactly a good advertisement for American school education.
As for the Dalai Lama, the obvious moral issue at present is America's actions toward Iraq. For twelve years the U.S. and Britain imposed economic sanctions against that country, resulting in the unnecessary deaths of a million Iraqis. About this gross immorality did we hear anything from the Dalai Lama?
Well, yes, after twelve years we did. See His Holiness the Dalai Lama's views on war and Iraq conflict [page removed], where we read (11 March 2003, prior to the American invasion of Iraq):
The Iraq issue is becoming very critical now. ... But what can we do? What can we do when big powers have already made up their minds? All we can do is to pray for a gradual end to the tradition of wars. ... Okay, now, let us pray that there be no war at all, if possible. However, if a war does break out, let us pray that there be a minimum bloodshed and hardship. I don't know whether our prayers will be of any practical help. But this is all we can do for the moment.
So "all we can do is to pray". Unfortunately His Holiness's prayers did not prevent the U.S. from invading Iraq two weeks later, embarking on an illegal, immoral and unjust war which has resulted in suffering to the Iraqi people on a scale which most Americans seem incapable of understanding.
Six months after the invasion the Dalai Lama made further comments about Iraq. The New York Times claimed that the Dalai Lama had said that it was too early to tell whether the Iraq War was a mistake. His Holiness corrected this in an interview with Amy Goodman, His Holiness The Dalai Lama Speaks Out On U.S. Foreign Policy, Against the Invasion of Iraq and 9/11, where he says he wrote a letter to George W. Bush after 9/11, urging him not to respond to violence with further violence. (Of course, the Dalai Lama could not know that Bush himself was part of the cabal which produced the mass murders of 9/11.) An admonition to non-violence is fine, but totally misses the root cause of the problem, which is that America is run by psychopaths who have been placed into power within the context of a corrupted political system which builds on the ignorance and stupidity of the American electorate. But such undiplomatic comments would never be uttered by His Holiness, who seldom departs from the tired old boring platitudes of Buddhist doctrine. Politely requesting a psychopath such as George W. Bush to act morally is totally useless.
On 2007-10-17 in Washington DC, before an assembled multitude of the great and the good, the Dalai Lama accepted the Congressional Medal of Honor from the blood-stained hands of Bush, thereby demonstrating that the acclaimed "tolerance" of the famous "spiritual leader" extends to the actions of war criminals and mass murderers. In his acceptance speech he said not one word, of course, in criticism of the psychopath by whom he had just been "honored" (some honor!). Not one word about the suffering of the Iraqis as a consequence of Bush's illegal, unjust and immoral military aggression, not one word about the sixty years of suffering of the Palestinians at the hands of the Israelis, subsidised by the United States to the tune of $3 billion dollars a year, and not one word about the fascist state over which Bush presides, whose capitalist exploitation of most of the world is responsible for the poverty, hunger and ill-health of billions of people. No, just some cute philosophising about self and no-self. The Dalai Lama is (or at least, appears to be) a nice man, kind and compassionate, but as a player on the stage of the world he is an inconsequential fop. He is irrelevant, except as an object of veneration by millions of naïve, gullible Western Buddhists — and as a useful tool with which the Americans can piss off China. Unfortunately the number of those naïve, gullible Western Buddhists has greatly increased in recent years, resulting in the lamas acquiring more money and influence by which to pursue their "buddhocratic" goals (see below).
The Dalai Lama is a great and charismatic spiritual figure, but a poor and poorly advised political strategist. When he escaped into exile in India in 1959, he declared himself an admirer of Mahatma Gandhi’s nonviolent resistance. But Gandhi took huge gambles, starting the Salt March and starving himself nearly to death — a very different approach from the Dalai Lama’s "middle way", which concentrates on nonviolence rather than resistance. The Dalai Lama has never really tried to use direct action to leverage his authority. ...
The International Campaign for Tibet, based in Washington, is now a more powerful and effective force on global opinion than the Dalai Lama’s outfit in northern India. The European and American pro-Tibet organizations are the tail that wags the dog of the Tibetan government-in-exile. ...
Tibet was effectively a sovereign nation at the time of the Communist invasion and was in full control of its own affairs. But the battle for Tibetan independence was lost 49 years ago when the Dalai Lama escaped into exile.
— Patrick French, He May Be a God, but He’s No Politician, The New York Times, March 22, 2008
Right. The Dalai Lama fled the field and China won by default.
While one can sympathize with the Tibetans' desire for freedom from Chinese hegemony (a desire which now has no chance of being realized), those who in 2008 protested Chinese control of Tibet during the relay of the Olympic torch were unwittingly working on behalf of the Western psy-ops boys, who seek to embarrass their geopolitical rival China and to deflect attention from the US's own abysmal human rights record. More amazing hypocrisy from a government which has used its immense military apparatus to bomb and invade two much weaker countries since 2001 and has directly caused immense suffering and the documented deaths of over a million people there (not to speak of the millions that it killed during its bombing and invasion of S.E.Asia in the 1960s and 70s).
And it's not just a matter of hypocrisy. The US-orchestrated campaign against China in the run-up to the Olympics was a propaganda tactic designed to weaken China's geopolitical position. This was explained in detail by Michel Chossudovsky in his China and America: The Tibet Human Rights PsyOp.
Since the Tibetan government-in-exile is funded by the National Endowment for Democracy, which is a CIA front organization, it's not an exaggeration to say that the Dalai Lama is on the CIA payroll (as he was also in the 1960s, at $1.7 million a year). So looks like it's true — nothing is sacred anymore. Gee, what a shame! Welcome to the real world.
Oh, by the way, did you know that the Dalai Lama is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations?
The view of the Dalai Lama among the many pious followers of Tibetan Buddhism in the West is that of a saintly figure whose main teaching is the cultivation of compassion and tolerance and who regularly (and vapidly) says such things as, "Because we all share this small planet earth, we have to learn to live in harmony and peace with each other and with nature." (And how to contribute to that? Simple — just become a disciple of the lamas and follow their instructions!) However it is not generally known that the Dalai Lama's presentation is a façade which conceals the real aim of himself and the other lamas, which is to establish a world-wide "Buddhocracy" to rule over the entire planet. This was revealed by the Dalai Lama's premier disciple Robert Thurman in a speech he made at a conference in Bonn in 1996. At this conference thecarefully considered objective of the assembled Tibetologists was demolished by Thurman. In a powerfully eloquent speech entitled "Getting beyond Orientalism in approaching Buddhism and Tibet: A central concept", he sketched a vision of the Buddhization of our planet, and of the establishment of a worldwide "Buddhocracy". Here he dared to go a number of steps further than in his at that stage not yet published book, Inner Revolution. The quintessence of his dedicated presentation was that the decadent, materialistic West would soon go under and a global monastic system along Tibetan lines would emerge in its stead. — Victor & Victoria Trimondi, The buddhocratic conquest of the west (a chapter in their book The Shadow of the Dalai Lama)The pious followers of Tibetan Buddhism in the West may be content to be ruled by lamas (and to remain ignorant of the lamaist ambition of a politico-religious global hegemony), just as pious Muslims may be content to be ruled by mullahs, but the rest of us prefer to retain our individual liberty and our freedom to live our lives as we see fit, unconstrained by self-serving and self-styled "authority", whether or not garbed in holy robes (and muttering pious inanities).
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