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Aug. 23rd, 2007

Orginally found by legless over at lj and posted in DC, but I wanted it here.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/20227400/sit
e/newsweek/

Aug. 20-27, 2007 issue - In one of history's more absurd acts of totalitarianism, China has banned Buddhist monks in Tibet from reincarnating without government permission. According to a statement issued by the State Administration for Religious Affairs, the law, which goes into effect next month and strictly stipulates the procedures by which one is to reincarnate, is "an important move to institutionalize management of reincarnation."

Now granted I know nothing about China's judiciary system, but I'm wondering how this works.  

I know that making such a law doesn't acknowledge that reincarnation exists, it only serves to punish people who claim to be reincarnations.  But my question is how do you prove this? 

I mean let's say that item X was stolen.  I go around town telling everyone that I stole it.  The cops get tipped off and I'm taken in for questioning.  Right at this point all I have to do is deny the claims.  They might be watching me after they release me.  They might search my house or do try to find evidence linking me, but in the end if they can't prove it, as long as I deny that I stole x to the cops or to a judge, it is the police and lawyer's job to find evidence.  

Let's apply this to reincarnation. The Dali Lama passes on and monks start looking for his reincarnation.  They go through a series of tests and find who they believe to be the Dali Lama.  Police swoop in.  Maybe this kid doesn't even believe he is the reincarnation and maybe he does, but either way when questioned he gives some sort of answer like "I don't know" or "no one can say for sure".  Now the police have to prove that he is a reincarnation.  Now they can reference the tests that the monks did to decide he was the Dali Lama, but without an actual admission or claim made by the person and not the public, how can the police act against him. 

On a similar thread, why doesn't all of Tibet resist by all of them claiming to be a reincarnation of X who reincarnated without permission.  I mean can China really throw all of them in jail?  

But those are just my thoughts on it.  Anyone else?