I remember standing against the very act of self-immolation in school debate a long time ago and I can still trace that vivid nervous feeling. Even before eventual debate session, I knew I was going to get killed for going against immolation that (since) was becoming the definition of martyrdom.Almost everyone in school gave no second thought on it because it was valorized and made heroic. I lost the debate for propounding my nonsensical condemnation policy with nervous sounding voice. Maybe this shivering voice forgot to express admiration for these brave potential brothers and sisters or maybe listeners in their focus on “condemnation” did not hear the one propounding(me) isn’t considering and putting the act of immolation down right as suicide and is instead in-fact very much struck by the gravity with which these immolators are willing to go.
This mere pain that goes through family’s emotion and the immolators’ body is in itself unexplainable and most of the immolators are all tender in age attempting something to attract this dubious uncaring world. I truly admire their courage and bravery. I can empathise with their desperate feeling of being in a state of no freedom at all( this case being a refugee). I salute their patriotism and willingness to do something for Tibet where many Tibetans don’t even care; even at this grave hour. I pay my humblest of condolence and prayers to their family.
Tibetans inside Tibet lack basic human rights and suffer immense inequality. This rather cliché saying “desperate times leads to desperate measures” relates here to Tibetan issue more than anything. Tibetans inside Tibet has no resort but to set themselves ablaze for the world to notice and see what is going with them inside Tibet. Tibetans in exile diaspora do not need to resort to such dire means and measure. They can tune their anguish in other ways.
Growing up in turmoil of identity, I have read and often many times glanced at books my mother used to read. Everything she read ranged from philosophy, protest to polemical writing. I wish, instead of glancing at my mother’s book I should have grabbed romantic or merely descriptive books and should have remained unaware of any political loyalty that later has turned me into polemical writer myself. To quote Orwell;
“Polemicists themselves often regret their past, unwillingly yet truthfully agreeing about their craft being a hasty channelling of emotion which would have been better spent elsewhere.”
Salman Rushdie is another emanation of Orwell- maybe one with lesser regret, Whether Jamyang Norbu is, is another question for some years later. For Rushdie regret is imminent with his growing age lesser hair. I will leave mine for years to come.
Not fluffing away from the topic, my method might hurt some of you but many others will also agree although part of them will want to disagree that immolation is not the nearer perfect method to strive for our rights.
People can do more while living than they are dead and whatever is boiling Tibetans, we have to accept and look clearly towards a better approach.
Tibetans have burned themselves in numbers and this fag world is not caring for the lives. The generic hearing of economy triumphing over issues of morality is very visible from the case such as Tibetans. Seeing the picture of this 16- year-old kid shivers me down the spine with immense remorse and anger. We have failed him. We, Tibetans, in our disunity and petty politics have failed these immolators.
Face of this kid that looks extremely tender with so much fun, laughter and potential is now dead. Yes, we can romaticise their deaths by glorifying and valorising them but we have to accept nonetheless that those who die, die and never come back again.
The world tangled in strings of confusing politics is equally responsible for his death and Tibetans will no longer remain silent. Tibetans will not like they always did- rely on gods or deities this time. They will not anchor the prospects of life after death and will not eventually content themselves with rituals after every tragedy with the hope that their gods will fight for them.