The datebase will strike a heavy blow to the Dalai Lama, as he has been utilising his religious status to ratify Living Buddhas at will in an attempt to control Tibetan monasteries and divide the country—Zhu Weiqun
China will soon come out with its first database with biographies of over 1,300 Living Buddhas living in the Communist nation, which the state media and analysts say could "strike a heavy blow" to the Dalai Lama, living in exile in India.
The online registration system contains the profiles of 1,311 individuals recognised as reincarnated Buddhas to help the public differentiate between "real religious figures" and "fraudulent ones", Global Times quoted the Buddhist Association of China (BAC) as saying.
The BAC first published details on 870 Living Buddhas in January.
The organisation said that there will not be major changes to the database's inquiry system in the near future, noting that their only responsibility is to update information on the reincarnation and Parinirvana of the Living Buddhas.
The online system gives detailed information on Living Buddhas, including their photos, legal names and the number of Living Buddha certificates they have received. Daily views of the system since its launch in January have reached a peak of 98,000, according to the BAC.
"The system will strike a heavy blow to the Dalai Lama, as he has been utilising his religious status to ratify Living Buddhas at will—which is against religious tradition—in an attempt to control Tibetan monasteries and divide the country," Zhu Weiqun, chairman of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference's Ethnic and Religious Affairs Committee, previously told the Global Times.
Reincarnation of Living Buddhas is a unique inheritance system in Tibetan Buddhism that originated in the 13th century. The BAC began issuing certificates to Living Buddhas in 2010. The Living Buddhas included in the database are scattered throughout provinces and autonomous regions in China's north, northwest and southwest, with many concentrated in southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region, the BAC said.
China calls the 80-year-old 14th Dalai Lama "a political exile who has long been engaged in activities to split China under the pretext of religion."
The Dalai Lama fled his Himalayan homeland to India in 1959 after a failed uprising against Chinese rule in Tibet. He received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989.