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Tibet exhibition opens in Taipei

July 6, 2009

By Loa Iok-sin

Taipei Times, Jul 04, 2009

LIFE IN EXILE: The exhibition at National Taiwan Democracy Memorial Hall
features more than 400 photographs, more than 20 documentaries and many rare

A month-long special exhibition on the culture, religion, life and political
system of Tibetans living in exile was inaugurated in Taipei yesterday. The
exhibition commemorates the 50th anniversary of the flight of the Dalai Lama
and tens of thousands of his followers into exile in India.

"In 1959, more than 80,000 Tibetan farmers and cattle drivers - most with no
knowledge of living outside Tibet or in a modernized place - fled into exile
in India with the Dalai Lama to escape the Chinese occupation," Dawa
Tsering, chairman of the Tibet Religious Foundation of His Holiness the
Dalai Lama, told a news conference.

The foundation is the organizer of the exhibition at the National Taiwan
Democracy Memorial Hall in Taipei.

After moving from one of the coldest places in the world to one of the
hottest, the Tibetans had to not only quickly adapt to their new
environment, but also had to start a new life from nothing, Dawa said.

Although some people had been farmers all their lives, "they had to learn
about new crops and plants they had never seen before," he said.

"Through more than 400 photographs and more than 20 documentaries - most
being shown for the first time in Taiwan - we will present to visitors how
Tibetan culture and religion are preserved in exile, how they live their
life in exile and how Tibetan history is seen through a Tibetan
perspective," Dawa said.

Besides pictures, visitors can also see many rare objects, such as coins,
banknotes and stamps issued by the Tibetan government before the Chinese
occupation, as well as traditional Tibetan handicrafts, such as thangka
paintings and a display of sand mandalas.

The sand mandala is a Tibetan Buddhist tradition involving the creation and
destruction of a mandala made from colored sand. A sand mandala is destroyed
once it has been completed in a ceremony that symbolizes the Buddhist belief
in the transitory nature of material life.

The exhibition will be open until July 30, and more information can be found
on the Internet at
CTC National Office 1425 René-Lévesque Blvd West, 3rd Floor, Montréal, Québec, Canada, H3G 1T7
T: (514) 487-0665
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