By Saransh Sehgal
DHARAMSALA, India - China arranged for the 11th Panchen Lama to visit Labrang monastery, the home to the largest number of monks outside of the Tibet Autonomous Region, as it prepares its choice for leader in the fight against the Dalai Lama over the succession of Tibet's foremost religious leader.
Gyaltsen Norbu, the Beijing-appointed Panchen Lama
whom most Tibetans regard as illegitimate
Excerpt from Asia Times Online:
While the 11th reincarnation of the Panchen Lama remains controversial, it now seems the 15th reincarnation of the Dalai Lama will become an even greater controversy when the current 76-year-old 14th Dalai Lama passes away. Recognizing that this will affect their future, Tibetans in exile now give their full support to the Dalai Lama and are prepared to fight Beijing over the issue.
Tibetans believe the high lamas are reincarnations of religious figures in an unbroken line that can be traced back to the Buddha himself, whose soul never disappears. Reincarnation is believed by some religions to occur when the soul comes back to life in a new physical form after death. Both the Dalai Lama and the Panchen Lama, of the same sect of Tibetan Buddhism, the Gelug, play a role in choosing each other's next reincarnation.
As the Dalai Lama recently devolved his political power, both Tibetan society and China are concerned about what will happen when he dies. Many believe his eventual passing away will mark another turning point in the history of Tibet.
For complete text please visit: China plays Dalai Lama succession card, Asia Times Online