Evictions of Buddhist monastics at Larung Gar, the largest Tibetan Buddhist institute in the world, are underway, and according to Radio Free Asia, those evicted must sign a pledge to never return to the center.
As Lion’s Roar previously reported, government-sanctioned population cuts and demolitions of over half of the inhabitants and monastic dwellings at the center, situated in southwestern China’s Sichuan province, began in July. The demolitions aim to reduce the monastery’s population, estimated at over 10,000 people, to a maximum of 5,000. Demolition and eviction demands must be met by by October 2017, displacing over half of the center’s monks and nuns, who must now vow to never return.
Radio Free Asia received news from sources in the region that upon eviction, monastics must sign documents pledging to “uphold the unity of the nation and not to engage in behavior opposing government policy in the area.”
A petition on change.org collecting signatures from those who stand in solidarity with Larung Gar has been updated with a photograph of the pledge evictees must sign.
Videos uploaded to Facebook by Tsering Kyi this week show visibly upset monastics leaving Larung Gar:
Read more about the historical and cultural importance of Larung Gar Buddhist Academy on Lion’s Roar here.