BEIJING — Tibet have fully respected citizens’ right to freedom of religious belief, and given equal attention and protection to all religions and sects, a government white paper issued on Sept 6 said.
Religious activities are respected and protected. Currently, there are 1,787 sites for different religious activities in Tibet, and more than 46,000 resident monks and nuns, the white paper titled Successful Practice of Regional Ethnic Autonomy in Tibet said.
In Tibet autonomous region, religious festivals are celebrated in the same way they always were. They include more than 40 major religious activities, such as pilgrimages to holy mountains and lakes, the Saga Dawa Festival, the Buddha Exhibition Festival, and the Lamaist devil Dance Festival, all of which are protected and inherited, the paper said.
Temples are maintained and protected. Since the 1980s, the state has allocated funds, gold, and silver to maintain, renovate and protect temples. More than 1.4 billion yuan has been spent on restoring Tibetan cultural relics and refurbishing key monasteries, it said.
A total of 6.7 million yuan, 111 kg of gold, 2,000 kg of silver, and a large amount of jewelry has been used to renovate stupas and prayer halls from the Fifth Panchen Erdeni to the Ninth Panchen Erdeni. The state budget to build these for the 10th Panchen Erdeni was 66.2 million yuan and 650 kg of gold, it added.
The Living Buddha reincarnation is proceeding well. Through traditional religious rituals and historical conventions like drawing lots from a golden urn, in 1995 Tibet autonomous region sought out and identified the reincarnation of the 10th Panchen Erdeni, and conferred and enthroned the 11th Panchen Erdeni, with the approval of the State Council, according to the paper.
Tibet now has 358 Living Buddhas, more than 60 of whom have been confirmed through historical conventions and traditional religious rituals, it added.