Tibetian Schools

Figure 1.--Here we have three Tibetan boys. We think that they are wearing school uniforms. Note the young pioneers red kerchiefs. A reader tells us that when he was in Tibet during 200?, only children from Communist families wore the red kerchief. We do not know if they were treated differently than the other children.

Tibet is a central Asian country which was conquered by China (1720). China has since claimed soverignity, although often only nominally. The Communist government invaded Tibet which was esblishing an independent identity during the Koren War and has since increased its control over Tibet and promoted the migrantion of ethnic Chinese into Tibet. The Tibetian population is very traditional and there have been perodic uprisings put down by the Chinese with force. Tibet is largely Buddhist country. And traditional Tibetian education was controlled by Buddhist religious leaders. The Chinese have developed a modern education system along the lines of the overall Chinese education system. The Tibetian schools are totally controlled by the Chinese Government which attempts to downplay Tibetian culture and national identity and in particular remove any relgious content from the curriculum.

A reader tells us about traditional Tibetian education. "I have done consulting work for some of the higher level Tibetan Lamas and a Harvard Professor working with both His Holiness the Dali Lama and His Holiness Menri Trizin. Children are taken into the Monastary for education at an early age and the difference in the education for children who will become monks and lay people are identical until they reach their teens. Then the person must choose to remain in the monastery as a monk or leave and enter the secular world. That is why the children are treated equally. But the education is a way to continue the Tibetan teachings for these children. There is a good explanation of this in a Tibetan DVD by the Bon Foundation called 'Mustang to Menri'. The Chinese Communists have tried to end the Buddhist control and influence on education regardless of the desires of the Tibetian people. "That is why many of the monasteries have moved to India and outside the Chinese Tibetan borders. The Dali Lama's monastery is in India (Dhamsala) and HH. Menri is now also in India. I am uncertain about the other sects. There is a monastery for Rahob Rinpoche in Far Eastern Tibet that is still active because it is difficult for Chinese to be there, but that is all I know. Rahob, the abbot of that Monastery, which I believe has more than 250 monks lives in upstate New York."


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Created: 8:26 PM 3/27/2009
Last updated: 1:17 PM 12/31/2012