My Chest Tightens:
As I log into twitter, I see Dalai Lama trending. “Cool, the world is awakening, what a pleasant surprise?” Well, it didn’t take my joy to turn into dismay in a few minutes. This tweet fell into my feed.
I scroll down to the replies to see what this was all about. I see a video posted over and over again. I watch as the child is kissed on the lips by his “Holiness”. “Suck my tongue”, he says to the child who is probably around 8 or 9 years old.
My chest tightens instantaneously, as I watch an 87 year old “God-like” man doing what he is doing. The child can be seen withdrawing himself from Dalai Lama many times as he is fondled repeatedly. The sadness I feel hearing the cheers and claps of the mostly adult audience almost paralyses me.
I feel I have to assume the burden of the trauma the child might have just experienced. The child might not be able to fully comprehend what has happened, so I am going to feel and show my outrage on his behalf.
The World Copes:
Others have reacted and coped with the situation in ways we all know how to in this digital age. By meeting his actions with horror, humor and justification.
Case 1: Horror:
Case 2: Humor:
Case 3: Justification:
Links to articles like these where sticking out one’s tongue as a mark of respect or reverence have been part of some replies. Oh, give me a break. It is beyond my comprehension, how such an act can even been justified.
Tibetan greeting: Sticking out one’s tongue is a sign of respect or agreement and was often used as a greeting in traditional Tibetan culture. According to Tibetan folklore, a cruel ninth-century Tibetan king had a black tongue, so people stick out their tongues to show that they are not like him (and aren’t his reincarnation).
Source: The Institute Of East Asian Studies @ UC Berkeley
Kindness And Wisdom Is Not Lost:
For me, Dalai Lama’s teachings, either through his speeches and books he wrote or cowrote with others, have been a lifeline through some tough times in my life. This site you are on right now is filled with quotes and book recommendations of him.
I need to cleanse. I need to purge myself of any references to him I still carry. Our collective sense of safety and love have been tarnished. The world needs to heal for the sake of the child who has been thrust into a limelight, the shadow of which will haunt him for the rest of his life.
In the end, its the words of my 14 year old that come to my rescue. “It is sad amma, people in power do extremely disappointing things sometimes, that’s why I don’t want to become powerful.”
I was looking for wisdom everywhere, even in the heart of a self proclaimed Holiness, when all the world’s kindness is right here at home.
“Children are not the people of tomorrow. But, they’re the people of today.” – Janusz Korczak, the man who wrote books like How to love a child, said.
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About The Article Author:
I see myself as an advocate for bringing social, emotional and character development to families, schools and communities. I never want to let this idea out of my sight – Our children are not just GPAs. I’m a Writer and a Certified Master Coach in NLP and CBT. Until 2017, I was also a Big Data Scientist. In December of 2044, I hope to win the Nobel. Namasté.
Write to me or call me. Tell me what support from me looks like.
Program Director & Essential Life Skills Coach for Kids and Busy Parents
Essays On Life
Why We See Outrage, How Hope Helps And Handling The Stressors Of Life
True heroism is minutes, hours, weeks, year upon year of the quiet, precise, judicious exercise of probity and care-with no one there to see or cheer. This is the world. ~ David Foster Wallace
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