Grey light of the day

Ugyen Gyalpo

Ugyen Gyalpo

By Ugyen Gyalpo

NEW YORK, US, 13 November 2017

Once King Songsten Gampo reigned supreme over Tibet, riding upon his victorious horse, his people striding with valour and pride. He would have never imagined to see this grey light of day, when his people would fall to this diminishing grace. That one day his proud race would succumb to the fear of those from whom he had once claimed submission. Karma is a bitch and would come and bite you, couldn’t be closer to the truth, when the kinsmen of Songsten, that once gloriously reigned are subdued by the ones they once ruled.

Even the supposedly “heavenly chosen emperor of the Middle Kingdom”, as China was known through centuries, where other rulers were considered inferior, until Tibet’s King Songsten Gampo reigned, that the Tang Dynasty of China gave their princess Wencheng in marriage, hoping for a peace accord and a political alliance that would guarantee peace between the empires.

In a parallel universe, when His Holiness the Dalai Lama was both the political and the spiritual leader of Tibet, under his harmonious breath, the Tibetan people claiming ancestry from all three provinces and religious sects, fluttered in peace without mantras of shenanigans and manipulation, like the tranquil colours of the prayer flags sewn on a single string. The lungta horse xeroxed on the colours of elements, would gallop upon that high pure wind, where our long-necked cranes would take flight.

His Holiness, under the cover of that ever-shining warm joyful smile, would actually be welled in pain, to witness the evolution of the sad state of our polity, bred upon a government initially formed with forthright vision of achieving a common goal under His wing. A goal that has now faded into the optical illusion of a mirage ever since His Holiness left his political role, paving the way for democracy, that is now wrecked in internal turmoil between elected representatives from the highest orders.

A full-fledged government, but ironically without a country. A government chaired by its elite bureaucrats not only soaked into the cultural assimilation of its host country, but which would also go on to emulate the corruptness and vagaries of the dirty Indian politics. Corruption, if not necessarily measured in greenbacks, but at least in thoughts and poisonous divisive acts.

A government where its elected leaders under His Holiness nose, would spur the growth of cronyism and nepotism, where humility of a patriot is stoked as character of a traitor, where misalignment to their structured ideology are stoned and berated by abhorrence and vilification.

United we stand, divided we fall, couldn’t echo louder enough to stir on many deaf ears stuffed with cotton balls of political egos. Instead of brainstorming from all ideologies and fuelling a joint think tank, unlike the recent conference held behind closed doors, to embolden the goals of achieving freedom or finding a solution for the greater cause of Tibet through the propounded genuine autonomy, we have but a few entrenched as egoistic, almost shy of becoming intellectuals, whom I desperately wished should have shouldered the mantle of our cause, then trumpeting and harping once every solar eclipse and then disappearing into the shadows of anonymity. For me at least, they have now become like the metamorphosing cocoon fighting for the light of recognition every so often.

With the degraded state of our politics hovering over our shoulders now, where everyone seems to be cutting others’ throats for a score — to the great joy of our nemesis — history will judge for sure the actions of our elected leaders under the microscope for their intentions.

About the author

Ugyen Gyalpo lives in Woodside, New York, and works as an insurance agent for United Health Group, New York.

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