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Tibet Oral History Project: Interview with Dhundup Tsering on 5/3/2013

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Published on Feb 16, 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: Dhundup Tsering describes Tsona, his birthplace as a large town with about 1,000 families. His family earned their livelihood from farming, rearing animals and trade. He describes the different games he played as a child. He states that his family annually moved to Arunachal Pradesh, India during wintertime when it became too cold in Tsona and spent 5-6 months in Mon Tawang in the summertime. Dhundup Tsering's family heard about the escape of His Holiness the Dalai Lama into India in 1959 and decided not to return to Tibet from Mon Tawang that summer. Dhundup Tsering talks about attending his first school at the age of 13 at the Transit School in Dharamsala, India and then the Tibetan School in Mussoorie. After finishing school his first job was the construction of the Library of Tibetan Works and Archives in Dharamsala. Subsequently he served as assistant accountant and assistant secretary for the Library and then the Handicraft Center, serving the Tibetan Government-in-exile for 20 years. Dhundup Tsering believes that Tibetan culture is unique in the way it is interrelated to Buddhist dharma. For him the most important teaching is "If you cannot help someone, do not cause harm." He also explains the Dalai Lama's advice that by "cultivating relations, gradually there will be a change of heart" between the Chinese and Tibetans.

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