Lessons from Splitsville:
A Double Divorcée
BY BENÉE MICKLES
There’s nothing worse than a broken heart.
A humungous wave of emotions overtakes you–grief, anger, confusion, rejection, low self-esteem, jealousy, devastation. And don’t forget the physical symptoms: lack of appetite, chest pains, upset stomach, anxiety, sleeplessness. Your heartache can take over your whole being. How do I know? Sucks to say this but I’ve been divorced.
That wasn’t supposed to be my story. Who gets married to get divorced? My first marriage lasted a decade. He was my high school sweetheart, the father of my beautiful children. When you’re young, forever seems like such an easy thing to do. But in reality, even happily married couples know marriage can be one of the hardest things a person will ever encounter.
Marriage number two? Surely this was my soul mate. I now “got” what marriage takes. After ten years with the first guy, I learned plenty of lessons. Of course I could make this work, especially since this time around I married the man who I was supposed to spend forever with.
Forever ended after two years.
Refer back to the first paragraph and you’ll know exactly where I was and how I felt. So, with all of this wonderful “experience” I have, why not write about how to move on after heartbreak? Yep, I think I can put together a paragraph or twenty about the subject, and maybe help some folks along the way.
Now, if you’re expecting some magical cure, if you’re expecting that by the last period of this article you’ll have a healed and whole-again heart, you can stop reading right here. At the end of the day, what it takes is you. I repeat, YOU. You’re the key. And I’ll be honest–it ain’t easy. In fact, I’m still in the process. I’m still on the path to a happy, healthy, whole me. What keeps me going is I (more…)
Why Suicide By
Continue in Tibet
BY TENZIN THARCHEN
“I am giving away my body as an offering of light to chase away the darkness, to free all beings from suffering, and to lead them—each of whom has been our mother in the past and yet has been led by ignorance to commit immoral acts –to the Amitabha, the Buddha of infinite light. My offering of light is for all living beings, even as insignificant as lice and nits, to dispel their pain and to guide them to the state of enlightenment. I offer this sacrifice as a token of long-life offering to our root guru His Holiness the Dalai Lama and all other spiritual teachers and lamas.”
– Lama Sobha, in his final testimony, after setting himself afire on January 8, 2012. The testimony was found after his death, recorded in a tape cassette, wrapped in his robes
123 Tibetans have set themselves on fire since 2009. All but one of those self-immolations has occurred in the last two years. The latest took place this past November.
The number of self-immolations peaked in 2012, with 85 taking place that year. There were 27 in 2013.
102 of the self-immolators have died.
19 of the self-immolators were women.
The two oldest were in their sixties. The youngest was 15. In all, 31 were teenagers, 59 were in their twenties, 13 in their thirties, eight in their forties, and three in their fifties. 53 were between 18 and 24 years old.
Not many details about the work of the self-immolators have emerged, so the record is incomplete. But what is known is that 40 were monks, 12 were former monks, six were students, four were nomads, three were farmers, one was a forest guard, and one was a writer. 13 have been reported to be parents–nine fathers and four mothers.
But what exactly did these 123 citizens hope to achieve through self-immolation? What difference has it made? And what, if any, change has occurred as a result of the self-immolations?
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All of Tibet is essentially under lockdown. “Tibet” here corresponds roughly to what the Chinese government has designated the Tibet Autonomous Region, plus Tibetan areas of the Chinese provinces of Sichuan, Yunnan, Gansu and Qinghai. It’s a huge area–five times the size of France.
China is the largest country in the world ruled by a dictatorship and has one of the worst human rights records of any country. But at the same time, it’s one of the most rapidly changing societies, and the changes have brought about freedoms inconceivable in the Maoist era. As long as you don’t publicly defy the Communist Party, as long as your pursuits don’t threaten the power or interests of Party (more…)