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Tibet Oral History Project: Interview with Lobsang Wangdu on 4/8/2010

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Published on Jan 5, 2018

The interpreter's English translation provided during this interview is potentially incomplete and/or inaccurate. If you are not fluent in Tibetan, please refer to the interview transcript for the complete and correct English translation. Read the interview transcript in English at http://tibetoralhistory.org/Interview...

** This interview about life in Tibet was conducted by the Tibet Oral History Project. This non-profit organization aims to preserve the history and culture of the Tibetan people by interviewing elderly Tibetan refugees about life in Tibet before and after the Chinese invasion. Learn more at http://www.TibetOralHistory.org.

** Interview Summary: Lobsang Wangdu was born in Duktsa in eastern Tibet. The main livelihood of his village was farming and harvesting of several types of mushrooms. Lobsang Wangdu became a monk at the age of 2 or 3 years old, but lived with his family most of the time rather than at the monastery in order to continue helping his parents. Lobsang Wangdu explains that taxes in his region were paid to the Chinese authorities instead of the Tibetan Government because they lived on the eastern side of the Yangtse River. When he was older Lobsang Wangdu was admitted to Gaden Monastery near Lhasa. He outlines a typical day in a monk's life as well as how food is arranged for the monks by the chanzo 'business manager' and what their daily meals included. Lobsang Wangdu describes the role of Chushi Gangdrug [Defend Tibet Volunteer Force] in resisting the Chinese forces and escorting His Holiness the Dalai Lama to India. Lobsang Wangdu left his monastic life to join the Chushi Gangdrug and describes his training and battle experiences. He left Tibet immediately after the escape of His Holiness the Dalai Lama in 1959. His group arrived in Mon Tawang [Arunachal Pradesh, India] with no food or money and had to sell the small number of horses and mules that survived the journey over the mountain pass.

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