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Shadow Tibet: Jamyang Norbu's Blog

April 8, 2008

I released a book titled Shadow Tibet (a collection of my essays from
1989 to 2004) on 8th March in New York City at a Tibetan Youth Congress
organized symposium. The roughly 1000 strong Tibetan audience was so
surprisingly outspoken, savvy, and raring to do something that I
realized I had to find a way to maintain some kind of discussion with
them, which was when I seriously thought of starting a blog. I have a
tendency (as my long suffering readers will know) of writing ponderously
lengthy essays) so I had to find a medium which would force me to be
more pithy and readable. Then 10th March happened. I knew I had to start
the thing asap. The designer of my website, Ambum Golok of Geneva,
thought that Shadow Tibet would be a good title for the blog, since that
was the territory I was exploring in my writings. What do you think?
Here is the blurb from the book:

Like alternate worlds in science fiction, two distinct Tibets co-exist
these days. One flourishes in the light of celebrity patronage, museum
openings, career opportunities, pop spirituality and New Age fashions.
This is the Tibet that has captured the romantic fantasy of the West and
which has drawn much of the interest that the Tibet issue receives at
the moment. Here, Tibet is far more than the issue of Tibetan freedom
and represents the millenarian aspirations of the affluent and the
established for spiritual solace, ecological harmony and world peace.
Here the problems of Tibet: the nation of the Tibetans, is nowhere as
relevant or important as that of Tibet: the repository of a secret
wisdom to save a materialistic and self-destructive West.

The other Tibet exists in the shadow of a cruel and relentless Darwinian
reality. Under Chinese Communist occupation it is a world of paid
informers, secret police, prison walls, torture, executions,
unemployment, racism, threat of extinction, and overwhelming cultural
loss; revealing itself in individual lives families, violence and
growing hopelessness. In exile, it manifests itself, especially in the
leadership, in cynical apathy, intellectual confusion, religious
bickering and complete loss of political direction. Yet, this is also a
world, unacknowledged perhaps, of selfless service, loyalty, love of
country — and when called upon — of heroism and sacrifice. This is the
world I have attempted to write about. This is Shadow Tibet.

Check out the blog at www.jamyangnorbu.com some of the entries are still
quite long, but give me time. I will learn to be succinct. My longer
pieces will appear on Phayul.com and WTN as before. Bhod Gyalo! Rangzen!
CTC National Office 1425 René-Lévesque Blvd West, 3rd Floor, Montréal, Québec, Canada, H3G 1T7
T: (514) 487-0665   ctcoffice@tibet.ca
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