Category - Humor & Satire

China’s Tensions With Dalai Lama Spill Into the Afterlife

New York Times, By Chris Buckley, March 11

Hong Kong — Chinese Communist Party leaders are afraid that the Dalai Lama will not have an afterlife. Worried enough that this week, officials repeatedly warned that he must reincarnate, and on their terms.

Tensions over what will happen when the 14th Dalai Lama, who is 79, dies, and particularly over who decides who will succeed him as the most prominent leader in Tibetan Buddhism, have ignited at the annual gathering of China’s legislators in Beijing.

Officials have amplified their argument that the Communist government is the proper guardian of the Dalai Lama’s succession through an intricate process of reincarnation that has involved lamas, or senior monks, visiting a sacred lake and divining dreams.

Party functionaries were incensed by the exiled Dalai Lama’s recent speculation that he might end his spiritual lineage and not reincarnate. That would confound the Chinese government’s plans to engineer a succession that would produce a putative 15th Dalai Lama who accepts China’s presence and policies in Tibet. Their anger welled up on Wednesday, as it had a day earlier.

Zhu Weiqun, a Communist Party official who has long dealt with Tibetan issues, told reporters in Beijing on Wednesday that the Dalai Lama had, essentially, no say over whether he was reincarnated. That was ultimately for the Chinese government to decide, he said, according to a transcript of his comments on the website of People’s Daily, the party’s main newspaper.

“Decision-making power over the reincarnation of the Dalai Lama, and over the end or survival of this lineage, resides in the central government of China,” said Mr. Zhu, formerly a deputy head of the United Front Department of the Communist Party, which oversees dealings with religious and other nonparty groups. He now leads the ethnic and religious affairs committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, an advisory body that meets at the same time as the Legislature, or National People’s Congress.

Catholics don’t have to breed ‘like rabbits’, says Pope Francis

Pope says Catholic church supports “responsible parenting” but criticises ‘ideological colonisation’ of the developing world

Pope defends church’s opposition to artificial contraception

AP, January 20

Catholics do not have to breed “like rabbits” and should instead practise “responsible parenting”, Pope Francis said on Monday.

Speaking to reporters en route home from the Philippines, Francis said there were plenty of church-approved ways to regulate births.

But he firmly upheld church teaching banning contraception and said no outside institution should impose its views on regulating family size, blasting what he called the “ideological colonisation” of the developing world.

African bishops, in particular, have long complained about how progressive, western ideas about birth control and gay rights are increasingly being imposed on the developing world by groups, institutions or individual nations, often as a condition for development aid.

“Every people deserves to conserve its identity without being ideologically colonised,” Francis said.

At that, Francis’ head exploded from the cognitive dissonance and hypocrisy.

Men who take a lot of selfies ‘show strong links to psychopathic tendencies’

Sydney Morning Herald, By Eamonn Warner, January 9

As if we needed another reason to put a stop to selfies.

A new study published in the journal Personality and Individual Differences has revealed that men who take a lot of selfies will score much higher on tests looking for signs of psychopathy.

Conducted by Ohio State University, the research shows that those very fond of a selfie display a wide range of antisocial behaviours.

Overall, 800 men between the ages of 18 and 40 were quizzed on their attitude towards posting photographs of themselves on social media.

Impulsiveness and a lack of empathy were among the most prevalent, while unsurprisingly the responders were also found to possess high levels of narcissism.

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