Dharamshala: Speaker of the Tibetan Parliament in Exile, Khenpo Sonam Tenphel, extends Losar greetings to Tibetans inside and outside of Tibet on the occasion of the traditional Tibetan New year- Losar 2151-the year of Wood-Dragon.
Speaker Khenpo Sonam Tenphel’s message for Losar:
I would like to extend my warmest greetings on the onset of Losar, a year of Wood-Dragon, to all Tibetan brothers and sisters inside and outside Tibet and to all friends of Tibet personally and on behalf of the Tibetan Parliament in Exile. Celebrating the new year is a custom unique to each ethnic group. Therefore, throughout the world, people joyously celebrate New Year with the popular expression “Happy New Year”. New Year is not just a celebration of a day or two, but rather, it is an opportunity for everyone to start better resolutions to make the whole year meaningful.
As for us Tibetans, all because of His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s benevolent leadership and support from the Government of India, the Tibetan culture, religion and language have been brought to prominence, which is a proud moment for us.
In a sense, Tibetans have been divided into two: Tibetans inside and outside of Tibet. Politically, this is a loss for us. However, this is an unusual opportunity for us Tibetans in the twenty-first century, when everyone values freedom and democracy. Political attitudes are changing rapidly worldwide, and China is also undergoing a tremendous transition. In that regard, every Tibetan should be loyal and courageous to strengthen our struggle for the Tibetan freedom movement in the coming years. As our struggle is based on truth and reason, I believe that one day, there will be a situation where we all Tibetans can be reunited.
Similarly, as Tibetans are dispersed throughout various countries, our ancestral Tibetan language, culture, and religion are susceptible to being overlooked. It is essential for all Tibetans, young and old, to take pride in our heritage and incorporate it into our daily lives. Numerous Tibetan associations overseas have set up Tibetan weekend schools to teach the Tibetan language to young Tibetans, and it is an excellent service to our culture. We all must work especially hard to preserve and promote our Tibetan religion, culture and language.
It is also important to note that in this year, His Holiness the Dalai Lama will be ninety years old according to the Tibetan calendar. Thus, we all hope and pray for His Holiness to live a long life. In order to prolong His Holiness’ life, we must all work together to fulfil the noble aspirations of His Holiness and, practice virtues and abstain from committing sins. On top of that, we are preparing for the celebrations, both officially and informally. Likewise, individual Tibetans will undoubtedly have the opportunity to celebrate in various ways, to the best of their ability, to honour His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s noble deeds and showcase our gratitude.
From the general point of view, the Tibetans are a people of intelligence. The glory of our people is that we have a rich language, culture and history because of the bravery and diligence of our emperors. We have developed a sense of oneness among us. From the very beginning of our journey into exile, it has been the wish of His Holiness that, irrespective of our cholka (three traditional Tibetan regions), we all share weal and woe together. As per His Holiness’ successive advice, we must not violate our harmony amongst ourselves on the basis of cholka and religious schools. Thus, I felt it would be fitting to include these few remarks with my Losar greetings. We can secure our people’s prosperity and good fortune if everyone accepts accountability for and works to put the things I’ve mentioned into practice.
Once again, I wish you all a very happy Losar and may you all have long, healthy lives filled with abundance of happiness. May the messages of compassion, love, and kindness prevail and bring about world peace. In particular, long live to our spiritual leader, His Holiness the Dalai Lama and all the upholders of Buddhist teachings and hope their noble aspirations be fulfilled. Above all, I pray for a quick resolution of the Tibet-China conflict.
Tashi Delek and thank you.