Name: Lobsang Wangdu
Interview Age: 74
Date of Birth: 1936
Birthplace: Duktsa, Kham, Tibet
Year Left Tibet: 1959
Political Prisoner: No
Interview No.: 8M
Location: Doeguling Settlement, Mundgod, Karnataka, India
Categories: Buddhist Traditions
Keywords: childhood memories, Chushi Gangdrug guerrillas, Dalai Lama -- escape, environment/wildlife, escape experiences, Kham, monastic life, taxes
Lobsang Wangdu was born in Duktsa in eastern Tibet. The main livelihood of his village was farming and harvesting of several types of mushrooms. Lobsang Wangdu became a monk at the age of 2 or 3 years old, but lived with his family most of the time rather than at the monastery in order to continue helping his parents. Lobsang Wangdu explains that taxes in his region were paid to the Chinese authorities instead of the Tibetan Government because they lived on the eastern side of the Yangtse River.
When he was older Lobsang Wangdu was admitted to Gaden Monastery near Lhasa. He outlines a typical day in a monk's life as well as how food is arranged for the monks by the chanzo 'business manager' and what their daily meals included.
Lobsang Wangdu describes the role of Chushi Gangdrug [Defend Tibet Volunteer Force] in resisting the Chinese forces and escorting His Holiness the Dalai Lama to India. Lobsang Wangdu left his monastic life to join the Chushi Gangdrug and describes his training and battle experiences. He left Tibet immediately after the escape of His Holiness the Dalai Lama in 1959. His group arrived in Mon Tawang [Arunachal Pradesh, India] with no food or money and had to sell the small number of horses and mules that survived the journey over the mountain pass.
- Marcella Adamski (Interviewer)
- Tenzin Yangchen (Interpreter)
- Pema Tashi (Videographer)