The facts behind His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the viral video!
Screenshot of the video / Dharamsala, India 24/02/2023
The video footage of His Holiness the Dalai Lama kissing a boy, which went viral in April, was greatly sensationalized by certain sections of the media. Unfortunately, many commented hastily, which further created a lot of misunderstanding and misinterpretation.
We could never doubt the sanctity and compassion of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, who is the icon of peace and non-violence. For Tibetans and Himalayan Buddhists around the world, he is the manifestation of Avaloketishvara, the Buddha of compassion and patron deity of Tibet. Hasty and salacious disrespectful comments, especially by media and film stars, are unfortunate and blasphemous.
In Tibetan culture, it is common to see the old grandparents not only give a pop kiss to the small children but also give a small candy or piece of food to children from their mouths – directly mouth to mouth. This may not be the norm in (your) other culture, but this is commonly done. After the elder gives a pop kiss and a candy, since there is nothing left in their mouth, nothing left to give, they will say the phrase “OK, now `eat my tongue` (not `suck, ` as His Holiness misspoke due to his less proficient English). The Tibetan phrase is `Che le sa`. They say “I`ve given you all my love and the candy so that`s it – all that`s left to do is eat my tongue.” And it is a playful thing that the children know. This is not really done in the Lhasa region (capital of Tibet) so much, but it is more common in the Amdo region (where HH is from). However, it is definitely a Tibetan custom."
The original article appeared on Tibet Policy Institute`s HP: https://tibetpolicy.net/the-facts-behind-his-holiness-the-dalai-lama-and-the-viral-video/