The “Buddha was born in Nepal” controversy has gone a long way when the Tibetian religious leader Dalai Lama told that Nepali people’s claim of Buddha’s birthplace is nonsense. The office of Dalai Lama has responded by a statement in their website that says: “We are concerned to know there was misunderstanding of the intent of his answer, and would like to clarify that His Holiness meant no disrespect towards his Nepalese brothers and sisters.” Read the full statement here.
What did Dalai Lama Say?
Dalai Lama was answering some questions raised by students in Meerut, India on 16 October 2017. One asked where was Buddha born, in India or Nepal. In response, Lama told that the statement that “some Nepalese people” made about Buddha’s birthplace being Nepal is a “nonsense”. He told, although the birth place now falls in Nepal – in ancient time, it was under greater Bharat. So, Buddha wasn’t born in Nepal or China or Tibet but in India.
Watch the video:
Now, a lot of people have interpreted what Lama had told and have their own views on the issue. Some say he had given the statement to make officials in India happy. That is because, at the time of the birth of Buddha, Kapilbastu wasn’t India or Nepal but a separate country. In between the time of now and then it might or might or might not have been in the Indian jurisdictions. As of now, the place falls in Nepal.
Others are supporting Lama’s statement and give their views on the issue. For example, Lobsang Rigsel Sherpa says, “It’s very clear; His Holiness didn’t mention Buddha was born in India, though He mentioned calling Buddha a Nepali is nonsense. And He also mentioned Buddha was not a Chinese and Tibetan, but He mentioned Buddha was an Indian, for His Holiness always claims himself a son of India as well.”
Rigsel adds, “His Holiness was neither born in India nor he is from India, but the reason why He claims Himself as a Son of India, is because most of his time in his life has spend in India.”
In my previous post, I wrote about Rajesh Hamal’s statement on the issue. (Read Rajesh Hamal’s take on Dalai Lama’s statement)
Even after Dalai Lama’s clarification, some are still concerned the way Lama had stated it and that he didn’t acknowledge Lumbini to be located in Nepal. My personal opinion is that – it doesn’t really matter what Dalai Lama or anybody else says. Their statement doesn’t change the history and the facts can’t be changed that Buddha is one of the greatest soul in the history of human civilization. There are much pressing and important issues to be concerned about than what others say about Buddha or Nepal. Please comment.