Golden Urn
Chinese name
Traditional Chinese金瓶掣籤
Simplified Chinese金瓶掣签
Literal meaningDrawing Lots from the Golden Vase
Tibetan name
Tibetanགསེར་བུམ་སྐྲུག་པ

The Golden Urn is a method for selecting Tibetan reincarnations by drawing lots or tally sticks from a Golden Urn introduced by the Qing dynasty of China in 1793. After the Sino-Nepalese War, the Qianlong Emperor promulgated the 29-Article Ordinance for the More Effective Governing of Tibet, which included regulations on the selection of lamas. The Golden Urn was introduced ostensibly to prevent cheating and corruption in the selection process but also to position the Qianlong Emperor as a religious authority capable of adducing incarnation candidates. A number of lamas, such as the 8th and 9th Panchen Lamas and the 10th Dalai Lama, were confirmed using the Golden Urn. In cases where the Golden Urn was not used, the amban was consulted. Golden Urn was exempted for Lhamo Dhondup to become the 14th Dalai Lama in 1940.

History

Qing dynasty

The Golden Urn originated in a decree issued by the Qianlong Emperor in 1792, after the Qing victory in the Second Invasion of the Sino-Nepalese War. Article One of the decree, the 29-Article Ordinance for the More Effective Governing of Tibet, was designed to be used in the selection of rinpoches or lamas and other high offices within Tibetan Buddhism, including the Dalai Lamas, Panchen Lamas and Mongolian lamas.[1][2] In Qianlong Emperor's article The Discourse of Lama (Chinese: 喇嘛说) which was published also in 1792, he explained the history of lamas and the reincarnation system, he inferred that the reincarnation system is only man-made, and creating rules is only to facilitate those monks, and to eliminate drawbacks associated with the man-made reincarnation.

The 29-Article Ordinance for the More Effective Governing of Tibet allows the Qing emperors of China to control the selection process, to prevent the Mongol and Tibetan nobles from taking advantage of the reincarnation process to seize religious power and to prevent the great lamas from combining with secular forces.[3][4]

Two Golden Urns were issued by the Qianlong Emperor: one is enshrined in Jokhang Temple in Lhasa and is to be used for choosing Dalai and Panchen Lama reincarnations; the other is in Yonghe Temple in Beijing for choosing Mongolian Lama, known as Jebtsundamba Khutughtu, reincarnations.[5]

The specific ritual to be followed when using the Golden Urn was written by the 8th Dalai Lama, Jamphel Gyatso.[1] The names and dates of birth of each candidate were to be written in the Manchu, Han, and Tibetan languages on metal or ivory slips and placed in the golden urn. After prayers before the statue of the Jowo in the Jokhang temple in Lhasa, a slip was drawn. The 7th Panchen Lama, Palden Tenpai Nyima, used the Golden Urn for the first time in 1822 to choose the 10th Dalai Lama, Tsultrim Gyatso.

Republic of China

On 12 August 1927, the Central Government mandated that before the publication of new laws, all laws in history regarding Tibetan Buddhism should continue unless there were conflicts with new doctrine or new laws of the Central Government.

In August 1929, the Supreme Court of the Central Government stated that before the publication of new laws, laws in history regarding Tibet and regarding the reincarnation of rinpoches or lamas were applicable.

In 1935, the Ordinance of Lama Temple Management (Chinese: 管理喇嘛寺廟條例)[6][7] was published by the Central Government of China. Article 2 states that reincarnated lamas are limited to those who were reincarnated previously in history, unless it was approved by the Central Government. Article 5 states that all monasteries/temples and lamas must be registered with Mongolian and Tibetan Affairs Commission. Article 7 states that the methods for reincarnation, appointment, rewards and punishments, registration, etc. of lamas shall be drafted by the Mongolian and Tibetan Affairs Commission and submitted to the Executive Yuan for approval.

In 1936, based on articles 2 and 7 of the Ordinance of Lama Temple Management (Chinese: 管理喇嘛寺廟條例), the Method of Reincarnation of Lamas (Chinese: 喇嘛轉世辦法)[8] was published by the Mongolian and Tibetan Affairs Commission of the Central Government.

Article 3 states that the death of lamas including the Dalai Lama and the Panchen Lama should be reported to Mongolian and Tibetan Affairs Commission, soul boys should be found, reported to and checked by Mongolian and Tibetan Affairs Commission, and a lot-drawing ceremony with the Golden Urn system should be held separately. Article 6 states that local governments should invite officials from the Central Government to take care of the sitting-in-the-bed ceremony. Article 7 states that soul boys should not be searched for from the current lama families.

The Method of Reincarnation of Lamas (Chinese: 喇嘛轉世辦法)[8] was abolished in 2004.

People's Republic of China

In 2004, the Religious Affairs Regulations (Chinese: 宗教事务条例) [9] was published by the Central Government. Article 36 states that the reincarnation system must follow religious rituals and historical customs, and be approved by the government.

In 2007, the State Religious Affairs Bureau Order No. 5 (Chinese: 国家宗教事务局令第5号) was published by the Central Government. Article 7 states that no group or individual may carry out activities related to searching for and identifying the reincarnated soul boy of the Living Buddha without authorization.

Article 8 states that a lot-drawing ceremony with the Golden Urn is applicable to those rinpoches, or lamas who were reincarnated previously in history. Requests for exemption are handled by State Administration for Religious Affairs, and for those exemptions that would have a significant impact, requests for exemption are handled by the State Council.

Usage

Dalai Lamas born after 1792

Name Golden Urn Used? Approval process from the Central Government
9 Lungtok Gyatso No Exemption from using Golden Urn was approved by the Emperor.[10]
10 Tsultrim Gyatso Yes Lot-drawing result was reported and approved by emperor.[10][1]
11 Khendrup Gyatso Yes Request to proceed with the lot-drawing ceremony was approved in December 1840.[10]
12 Trinley Gyatso Yes Lot-drawing ceremony was approved by the Emperor [11]
13 Thubten Gyatso No In 1877, request to exempt the 13th Dalai Lama from using lot-drawing process was approved by the Central Government.[12]
14 Tenzin Gyatso No On 26 January 1940, the Regent Reting Rinpoche requested the Central Government to exempt Lhamo Dhondup from lot-drawing process using Golden Urn to become the 14th Dalai Lama.[13][14] The request was approved by the Central Government.[15]

Panchen Lamas born after 1792

Name Golden Urn Used? Approval process from the Central Government
8 Tenpai Wangchuk Yes Lot-drawing result was reported and approved by Xianfeng Emperor in October 1860.[16]
9 Thupten ChokyiNyima Yes Lot-drawing process was approved by Guangxu Emperor on 14 January 1888.[17]
10 Choekyi Gyaltsen No Exemption of using lot-drawing process was approved on 3 June 1949 by the Central Government.[18]
11* Gedhun Choekyi Nyima[19] No Method of appointment on 14 May 1995 differed from that authorized by Central Government; Tibetan government-in-exile claims its method involves using possessions of the former Lama to identify his reincarnation, as the new child incarnate will reportedly recognize his past items amid miscellaneous ones.[20]
11* Gyaincain Norbu Yes Lot-drawing ceremony was held on 29 November 1995, and Gyaincain Norbu was approved by the Central Government on 8 December 1995 to become the 11th Panchen Lama.[21]

Mongol Lamas born after 1642

Name Golden Urn Used? Approval process from the Central Government
3 Rölpé Dorjé Yes Approved by Central Government of China.[26]
4 Yéshé Tenpé Gyeltsen Unknown Golden Urn use unknown
5 Changkya Yéshé Tenpé Nyima Yes Approved by Central Government of China.[26]
6 Lozang Tendzin Gyeltsen Yes Approved by Central Government of China.[26]
7 Lozang Penden Tenpé Drönmé Yes Approved by Central Government of China.[26]
8 Tendzin Dönyö Yéshé Gyatso No Designated by the Dalai Lama, not approved by Central Government of China.[27]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ a b c "Reincarnation". 14th Dalai Lama. September 24, 2011. Retrieved December 17, 2015.[dead link]
  2. ^ Smith 1997, p. 135.
  3. ^ http://www.tibetology.ac.cn/2018-05/04/content_41720529.htm 这是乾隆皇帝为防止包括西藏在内的蒙藏上层贵族利用活佛转世之机夺取宗教权力和防止大喇嘛与蒙藏世俗势力结合而采取的一项重要措施 This was an important measure taken by Emperor Qianlong to prevent the Mongol and Tibetan nobles, including Tibet, from taking advantage of the reincarnation of the living Buddha to seize religious power and to prevent the great lama from combining with Mongolian and Tibetan secular forces.
  4. ^ Dash, Mike (April 10, 2012). "Murder in Tibet's High Places". Smithsonian. Retrieved December 15, 2015.
  5. ^ Foster 2008, p. 171.
  6. ^ 管理喇嘛寺廟條例  [Regulations on the Management of Lama Temples] (in Chinese). 1935 – via Wikisource.
  7. ^ 廢 管理喇嘛寺廟條例 [(Abolished) The Regulations on Management of Lama Temples]. Laws & Regulations Database of The Republic of China. June 11, 1992.
  8. ^ a b 廢 喇嘛轉世辦法 [(Abolished) The method of reincarnation]. Laws & Regulations Database of The Republic of China. February 20, 1993.
  9. ^ "宗教事务条例 - 维基文库,自由的图书馆". zh.wikisource.org. Retrieved 28 March 2023.
  10. ^ a b c ChenQingying (2005). The System of the Dalai Lama Reincarnation. 五洲传播出版社. pp. 80–. ISBN 978-7-5085-0745-3.
  11. ^ Biography of the 12th Dalai Lama
  12. ^ 光绪三年(一八七七年),由八世班禅丹白旺秀和摄政王公德林呼图克图、三大寺和扎什伦布寺的全体僧俗官员,联名要求驻藏大臣转奏朝廷,以只选定了一名灵童,且经各方公认,请免予金瓶制签。当年三月,光绪帝谕旨:"贡噶仁钦之子罗布藏塔布开甲木措,即作为达赖喇嘛之呼毕勒罕,毋庸制签,钦此。" [In the third year of Guangxu (1877), the eighth Panchen Lama Danbai Wangxiu and the regent Delin Hutuktu, all monks and lay officials from the Three Great Temples and Tashilhunpo Monastery jointly asked the Minister in Tibet to transfer to the court. Since only one soul boy has been selected, and it has been recognized by all parties, please be exempt from signing the golden bottle. In March of that year, Emperor Guangxu issued a decree: "Lob Zangtab, son of Gongga Rinqin, opened Jiamucuo, that is, as the call of the Dalai Lama, Bielehan, there is no need to make a lottery."]
  13. ^ Goldstein 1991, p. 328–.
  14. ^ "Report to Wu Zhongxin from the Regent Reting Rinpoche Regarding the Process of Searching and Recognizing the Thirteenth Dalai lama's Reincarnated Soul Boy as well as the Request for an Exemption to Drawing Lots". The Reincarnation of Living Buddhas. Museum of Tibetan Culture of China Tibetology Research Center. 1940.
  15. ^ "Executive Yuan's Report to the National Government Regarding the Request to Approve Lhamo Thondup to Succeed the Fourteenth Dalai lama and to Appropriate Expenditure for His Enthronement". The Reincarnation of Living Buddhas. Museum of Tibetan Culture of China Tibetology Research Center. 1940.
  16. ^ "金瓶掣签制度在清朝的实行_宗教_手机中国西藏网".
  17. ^ 《名僧录》经过光绪帝批准,定于 1888 年正月十四日举行九世班禅灵童金瓶掣签仪式
  18. ^ 《历代班禅与雍和宫》黄崇文著, "1949年6月3日聪明睿智、灵异显著的贡布慈丹经国民政府批准,并由代总统李宗仁颁布命令,成为第十世班禅额尔德尼,免于金瓶掣签"
  19. ^ "United States Commission on International Religious Freedom: Gedhun Choekyi Nyima – The Panchen Lama." https://www.uscirf.gov/religious-prisoners-conscience/current-rpocs/gedhun-choekyi-nyima-panchen-lama
  20. ^ "Reincarnation". 2 March 2023.
  21. ^ People's Daily [dead link]
  22. ^ Wong, Edward (1 July 2010). "China Asserts Role in Choosing Dalai Lama". The New York Times. Retrieved 5 August 2010.
  23. ^ Norman, Alexander (2008). Holder of the White Lotus: The Lives of the Dalai Lama. London: Little, Brown. p. 165. ISBN 978-0-316-85988-2.
  24. ^ Arjia Rinpoche (2010). Surviving the Dragon: A Tibetan Lama's Account of 40 Years Under Chinese Rule. New York: Rodale Books. p. 207. ISBN 978-1-60529-754-5. ...When we made our selection we left nothing to chance. In the silk pouches of the ivory pieces we put a bit of cotton at the bottom of one of them, so it would be a little higher than the others and the right candidate would be chosen.
  25. ^ Arjia Rinpoche (2010). Surviving the Dragon: A Tibetan Lama's Account of 40 Years Under Chinese Rule. New York: Rodale Books. p. 207. ISBN 978-1-60529-754-5. We had to prostrate to the so-called Panchen Lama...we had neither the respect for nor faith in this chosen child... I felt soiled by this gesture.
  26. ^ a b c d http://www.tibet.cn/cn/rediscovery/202007/t20200720_6821558.html 第四世、第五世、第六世、第七世章嘉呼图克图转世灵童都是通过雍和宫的金瓶掣签产生的 The reincarnation of the fourth, fifth, sixth, and seventh Zhangjiahutuktu reincarnations were all produced by drawing lots from the Golden Urn in Lama Temple
  27. ^ a b Lcang skya rin po che'i sku phreng rim byon gyi ngo sprod rags bsdus // Bod kyi dus bab, 20 October 1998:3. See Kevin Garratt, "Biography by installment: Tibetan language reportage on the lives of reincarnate lamas", 1995-99; in P. Christiaan Klieger, Tibet, self, and the Tibetan diaspora: voices of difference ; PIATS 2000: Tibetan studies: proceedings of the ninth seminar of the International Association for Tibetan Studies (Leiden 2000). P. 89[permanent dead link]-90.
  28. ^ 藏傳佛教在台灣的發展 Archived July 8, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
  29. ^ a b 达赖喇嘛确立的第20世章嘉活佛访问日本 (20th Changkya as recognised by Dalai Lama visits Japan), Radio Free Asia, 2017-03-01
  30. ^ Samuel, Geoffrey (2012). Introducing Tibetan Buddhism. Introducing World Religions. Abingdon: Routledge. p. 249. ISBN 978-0-415-45664-7.

References