For five decades, the Dalai Lama has embodied the spiritual and political aspirations of generations of Tibetans in Exile. But just last month he gave up the political job, giving increasing power to a Harvard educated exile named Lobsang Sangay. Tibet's new Prime Minister in Exile has his own views of China's control. Will a new political strategy change the game for Tibetans anxious for an autonomous homeland?
(Photo credit: AP Photo/Ashwini Bhatia)
Part Three of The Current
Game Changer: Lobsang Sangay
Last month, a Harvard educated lawyer did something no one else has ever done. He replaced the Dalai Lama as the political leader of the Tibetan people.
The Dalai Lama remains the spiritual head of the Tibetan people. But Lobsang Sangay is the new Prime Minister of the Tibetan Government in Exile. Many Tibetans begged the Dalai Lama not to give up his political role.
Few people on earth have his charisma and perceived moral authority. Nevertheless, he felt it was time to leave politics. And now it's up to a relatively unknown exile to fight for Tibet's freedom. It's a potentially game-changing move for Lobsang Sangay and the Tibetan people.
Lobsang Sangay joined us from Delhi, India as part of our project Game Changer.
Last Word - Lobsang Rampa
We've been speaking this morning with the new Prime Minister of Tibet, Lobsang Sangay. If you're of a certain age, the name Lobsang may sound vaguely familiar. Bookstores in the 1970s often prominently displayed a number of pocketbooks on spirituality, written by another man named Lobsang. Lobsang Rampa claimed to be a Tibetan lama and his bestsellers were said to be inspired by his youth in a monastery.
His tales of mountain Yeti struck some people as decidedly odd however and the British press tracked him down in Ireland. Turns out his name was Cyril Hoskin and he was an English plumber. He didn't deny any of this-- he explained he had once fallen out of a tree and while unconscious, the spirit of a Tibetan monk moved into his physical self. That physical self eventually moved on -- to Calgary.
Like Grey Owl, another Englishman dissatisfied with his birth identity, Rampa adopted Canada as his home. He died in 1981 -- or maybe we should say moved on again. So, for today's Last Word, he shared a few of his thoughts on the limitations and unreliability of prayer. They are idiosyncratic to say the least.
Other segments from today's show: