For a long time i’e had this little internal joke with myself: for dancer / photojournalist / activist / writer / website producer / event producer Lobsang Wangyal, i am his “BBB”:
- Best friend
(He doesn’t know anything about this as far as i know. Unless he reads this page some day! 🙂 )
- I have been working with LW, mostly as his copyeditor on his websites, since 2002. In my opinion, we have the best author/editor relationship — at least in McLeod Ganj. Possibly in the whole world! Well, most definitely in whatever real/virtual space we are communicating in.
- Being a rather scrawny old fart, with no martial arts training, my bodyguard functions would mostly consist of huffing and blowing, and very likely some yelling. But my defense of him would be tremendously sincere!
- Best friend:
- Am honored to be his friend, traveling companion, eating-and-working partner for these many years. I might be pushing it to be saying “Best friend” — but he’s one of the longest-lived friends i have ever had in my entire rather longish life.
Lobsang doesn’t fit in a “sector” or a niche, so hasn’t been able to attract mainstream recognition, funding, or support. Then, there is hesitance to ask, as Tibetan culture looks down on tooting your own horn. As alternative as LW is, he is still very much a product of his culture!
So here i am tooting it for him. 🎉 🎉 🎉
All Lobsang’s works are for Tibet and for dharma. I have been working and traveling with him for many years, and i can vouch for it — this is all he does, and it comes from his heart.
My intention here is to show some of the more subtle aspects of his work that have earned my admiration and support. And, i hope, yours.
- Tibet Sun news portal
- Tibet Sun covers stories of importance in the Tibetan community, mostly exile, as well as international stories that are relevant to Tibetans’ lives today.
Unique opinion pieces.
A thriving comment section that has become, as far as i know, the only one of its kind in today’s Tibetan web world, in English or any other language.
- Activist – Passport for Tibetans
- In 2016 he initiated a successful PIL (Public Interest Litigation) for implementation of the Indian Citizenship Act for Tibetan refugees in India. You can read the details of the suit on the formal Lobsang Wangyal page on this website.
One outcome of this legal action, is that Indian government was ordered to remove impediments to refugee Tibetans born in India obtaining Indian passports. Another was that he became an informal “passport advisor” to exile Tibetans, as a source of information for them, as well as receiving reports of problems which he then took to Indian authorities, and even, again, to successful court resolution. He is still doing this work up to the present day.
- Activist – Democracy for Tibetans
- As a journalist LW reports the doings of the Central Tibetan Administration in exile and of other organisations, activists, and persons in the Tibetan community.
He hosts a lively forum on Tibet Sun where people are free to present their views, and where the concepts of free speech and debate are being developed for their world.
- Activist – Justice in exile Tibetan community
- When he sees injustice being done, he goes beyond writing articles, to writing emails, making phone calls, and talking with people, and rarely fails to carry an issue to some resolution.
- There is more.
- I will take a breath for a day or two, and put it all here!
- In the meantime, there is …
- The dancer
- LW loves to dance, and no one dances like LW!
These services and activities take up most of LW’s time, but he receives no funding, and very little monetary support from a few people. They are, in my opinion, of great benefit not only to the Tibetan people, but to other people and the world at large, as example and as action.
I know that he gets discouraged. I know that if he didn’t have to worry about money, he could and would do even more than he already is! He is divesting himself of some of his productions, and the time is probably right for those — but he is even thinking about dropping Tibet Sun, because he just can’t keep up and still stay alive — and i think that would be a terrible loss.
- At GoGetFunding you can support his general works, and his work enabling Indian passport for Tibetans.
Written 26 November 2019; revised 26 November 2019.