“ The young all have the same dream : to free Tibet. Some quickly forget this dream, convinced that there are some important things to do, like having a family, earning money, Career etc. Others, though, decide that it really is possible to make a difference in society and to shape the Nation we will hand on to future generations. ”
How can we be so arrogant?

The planet is, was and always will be stronger than us, We can't destroy it, if we overstep the mark, the planet will simply erase us from its surface and carry on existing.

Why don't we start talking about not letting the planet destroy us?

Because saving the planet gives a sense of power, action and nobility. Whereas not letting the planet destroy us” might lead to feelings of despair and impotence, and to a realization of just how very limited our capabilities are.
Whereas, Americans and Europeans, in different shades and sizes, prefer to walk the crowded by lanes in pairs or alone. Notice Western individualism and Asian groupism at work. Or, should this be interpreted as Western unilateralism and Asian cooperation?

All this gives Majnu Ka Tilla the ambience of a new Silk Road oasis town. The original Silk Road was once the world’s greatest thoroughfare, along which travelled much of the ideas and commerce that have shaped the West and Asia. Majnu Ka Tilla gives the same cosmopolitan air of commercial activities accompanied by rigorous spiritual pursuits. In keeping with its new big city image, a variety of languages work here: Tibetan, Hindi, English and Nepalese. But when there are teachings in Dharamsala, many tongues wag on the streets and pass through the refugee camp: Chinese, Japanese, Russian, Italian, French and German. There are restaurants that have their menu translated into Chinese.

As a mark of how good things are going in Majnu Ka Tilla, the place is graced by a fairly big parking lot. Globalization has taken a free-ride into the refugee camp and a variety of expensive brands advertised globally sit self-importantly on the lot.

Majnu Ka Tilla is certainly going up-scale. As a mark of its new repute, the place is bestowed three new names, two officially and one informally. His Holiness the Dalai Lama has named the place Samyeling, and the chief minister of Delhi, Shiela Dixit, recently gave the place the name of Aruna Nagar. The MTV generation of Tibetan exiles refers to the place as MT.

The inhabitants of Majnu Ka Tilla take all this attention very seriously. By six in the morning, they are up and running and humming. They water the footpaths, sweep them with certainly brooms but also with a conscientiousness and civic sense that would make the mayor (if there is one) of Singapore very proud.

Other neighbour, Punjabi Basti, across the Road. A wide iron bridge high above the Road connects the two neighborhoods. Punjabi Basti has expanded and smells of money. Gone were the groveling hutments. The same spirit of enterprise animates the place. Majnu Ka Tilla, in the true spirit of globalization, has outsourced many of its important services and commerce to Punjabi Basti, including the printing and sale of prayer flags, khatas and smaller, cheaper and laminated thangkas to its neighbor. The cloth and garments shops are full of Tibetan customers. Despite the talk, hanging heavy like the heat of the city, of the danger of avian flu, the chicken shops do a brisk business. Majnu Ka Tilla and Punjabi Basti, two neighbors, once shared the same degree of poverty. Now they are linked by the same kind of uncertain prosperity.

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Copyright @ 2009 Yungdung Dhargye