As of September 1, China is tightening control over Tibetan Buddhism with a new law requiring government permission for the reincarnation of lamas. Tibetan activists say this is another attempt by communist Chinese leaders to undermine Tibetan culture and even absurdly to control the religious afterlife. VOA's Heda Bayron has more on the story from our Asia News Center in Hong Kong.
The new law bans Tibetan lamas, or monks, from reincarnating without Chinese government approval.
China, which has ruled Tibet for more than half a century, says anyone outside China cannot influence the reincarnation process and only monasteries in China can apply for permission.
Experts and activists say the law is clearly aimed at excluding the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, from selecting reincarnated lamas or Living Buddhas - which form the core of Tibetan Buddhism's leadership. Read More.