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This link recently saved by puzz on July 20, 2010
So what is it about Tibet that has led to it being viewed, in the words of one Tibetologist, as a ‘country that is somehow outside the rest of the world’? ... Ironically, it originates in large part with British imperialism ... British forces invaded Tibet in 1904 and administered it until 1947. Their aim was to create what they self-consciously called a ‘buffer state’ to protect their immense interests in Indi
This link recently saved by puzz on August 20, 2009
Buddhism holds an exalted place in the half-informed Western mind. Whereas Christianity, Islam, Judaism, and Hinduism are each associated, in addition to their thought, with a rich material culture and a defended territory, Buddhism, despite its great monuments and architectural tradition throughout the Far East, is somehow considered purer, more abstract, and almost dematerialized: the most peaceful, austere, and uncorrupted of faiths, even as it appeals to the deeply aesthetic among us. .... Yet Buddhism, as Kandy demonstrates, is deeply materialistic and demands worship of solid objects, in a secure and sacred landscape that has required the protection of a military.