Safe Journey, Tenzin Delek Rinpoche.

 Imagine living in a place where you are starved, beaten, exiled, imprisoned, or even tortured for your beliefs.

Sadly, this kind of barbaric and primitive oppression still exist.

It is with great sadness that I learned of Tenzin Delek Rinpoche dying in a Chinese prison, finally finding his freedom.

Tenzin Delek Rinpoche was born in 1950 in a Tibetan area of Sichuan and stayed in India from 1982 to 1987 to study under the Dalai Lama. It was during this time that the Dalai Lama recognized Tenzen Delek as tulku, or a reincarnated lama.

In 1987 he returned to China where he worked to establish monasteries, clinics, schools and orphanages. For years he worked to develop social, medical, educational, and religious institutions. His efforts had become a focal point for Tibetans struggling to retain their cultural identity in the face of Chinas restrictive policies.

It is said that his relationship with Chinese officials took a turn for the worse when he opposed attempts to clear forests and because of his support for the Dalai Lama, who is now considered a separatist by the Chinese government. Over the course of a decade, he was the target of increased harassment and intimidation by Chinese officials.

In April 2002, Tenzin Delek was arrested by Chinese authorities as was his distant relative Lobsang Dhonup. Both were accused of having involvement with some bombings that had taken place . Longsang Dhondup, a monk, was sentenced to immediate death. Tenzen Delek was sentenced to death with a suspension of two years. Lobsang Dhondup was executed shortly after.

My wish is that he will be able to do in death what he could not do in life: I hope this tragedy will bring light to the ongoing oppression in Tibet.

It is also of great hope that the Chinese will investigate and make public the circumstances surrounding his death.

He is now free.

Author: Mary Rogers

Editor: Khara-Jade Warren

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