Tibetan Cultural Show in Paris …

Tibetan monks chanting and praying for the martyrs of Tibet

Two days of music and dance were organized and performed by the exiled Tibetan community of France while welcoming the Flame of Truth torch relay on its world tour. The cultural show took place at the Buddhist temple located in the beautiful park Bois de Vincennes. Formerly built as the African pavilion for the World exhibition in 1931 restored in 1977 it now houses a golden Buddha portrayed in a dhyana mudra meditative position. Entering the temple are several Buddhist statues and for this special event are images of self immolate Tibetan martyrs placed around temple walls – a reminder of their sacrifice for the people of Tibet. Just next to the main temple is a small Bhutanese style Tibetan Kagyu Dzong built in 1985 home to the orders of Kagyupa, Milarepa and Karmapas. A cultural event not only bringing together the international community and the exiled Tibetan community of France but also a unique moment to meet up with the Tibetan community who speaks about how they fled their homeland. Students of the Tibetan art school were skillful and performed beautifully – they might be far from their homeland but closer than ever to their ancestral heritage preserving and showing the rich Tibetan culture to the world through traditional dances and music.

Exiled Tibetans living in Paris

This was also an opportunity for me to meet up with Tibetans who have made France their home in exile. Many can never return and those born outside Tibet would probably never see their homeland and they would be lucky if they could go. I met Sonam a lively young man from the Kham province wanting to join the monastic life but disagree with the Chinese regime fled the country in 2001. He walked from Lhasa to the Nepalese border for 22 days and when caught by the Chinese he was sent back to his province. In 2010 he made a second attempt walked from Lhasa to Nepal which took him 27 days. He succeeded in crossing the border and remained in Nepal before coming to France with the help of friends. While enjoying my Momo (Tibetan meat vegetable dumplings) I met Dholma who fled Tibet 11 years ago and now living in exile with her two children in Paris and Kelsang a Tibetan born in India, a talented filmmaker who has never been and probably would never see his homeland. Then this little boy with an inquisitive look approached me and here is the shot …

An exiled Tibetan child at the Tibetan Cultural Show in Paris.
A hopeful look to a bright future but will he one day see his homeland ?

Two days of music and dance for the people of Tibet and their wonderful culture …

Tashi Sholpa traditional Tibetan dance

The cultural show ends with the arrival of the The Flame of Truth which originated from Dharamsala on its way around the world sending a message to the international community on the ongoing crisis and repression endured by the Tibetan people under the Chinese occupation. 51 Tibetans have been confirmed to have self immolate since 2009

The Flame of Truth arrived in Paris to continue its world tour

Here are more images from the Cultural Show organized and performed by the exiled Tibetan community of France …

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Categories: France, Paris

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