His Holiness the Dalai Lama remains in a tense situation in dealing with China where Beijing has labeled him as a trouble maker and separatist. As part of his diplomatic efforts to improve his relations with China the Dalai Lama recently urged the Chinese leadership to think wisely, while praising Mao as a great revolutionary, reported Phayul.com on March 2, 2014.
The Dalai Lama has said, “I knew Mao very well. He was a great revolutionary. He trusted me a lot. He even told me that religion is opium.” He has also said Mao later got himself corrupted by his own power. His Holiness the Dalai Lama has also had some nice things to say about incumbent Chinese President Xi Jinping, saying he is “being very courageous” in tackling corruption in China.
The Dalai Lama has also reaffirmed his commitment to the middle way approach in resolving the Tibet issue with China, saying Tibetans are willing to live under the Chinese government through a system with genuine autonomy. He continued to reinforce that Tibetans were not seeking independence or separation from China.
In reference to tensions with China, the Dalai Lama said, “Everybody loves Chinese food, isn’t it? So similarly, everybody should be able to have a pleasant feeling of China, not fear.” It appears the Dalai Lama has been making some powerful gestures of friendship and reconciliation towards Beijing. The next move in determining the future of Tibetan/Chinese relations appears to be up to Xi.