No place is too remote anymore in this age and time. Modern inventions such as the computers and Internet have resulted to easier global communication. Today it is impossible not to know who your neighbor is because the world has fairly shrunk and nations have become connected with one another. As a result, no country can claim pure cultural identity all of its own. Except perhaps, Tibet.
Tibet is one of the very few nations that continue to embrace its cultural history at an almost unadulterated state. Despite its proximity to other countries in the East Asian region, Tibet is the only state that has developed and preserved, to a certain extent, its Buddhist theocracy. Its society as isolated as it is from the mountains where the country sits, successfully upheld its unique and extraordinary customs despite modernization all around. But Tibet was never in full isolation. The highly preserved cultural heritage that it claims today was actually a conglomeration of outside influences from China, Buddhist India and Nepal. China, one of its closest neighbors had put in its political supremacy on Tibet with regard to the traditions and lifestyle embodied by Tibetan people. But on the whole, the authenticity of Tibetan culture remains intact to this day.
The uniqueness of Tibetan way of life is founded on the fusion of the political and religious aspects of other cultures. In other words, the distinct quality of Tibetan culture lies in the very combination of various influences that make up Tibetan culture. It is not pure, yet it is exclusive. It is a composite of several cultures and the fact that all these influences are able to co-exist and stay together to form one distinctive culture is amazing. In many ways, Tibetan people awesomely lead a life that is Chinese, Nepalese, Indian, and Middle Eastern in nature. The very essence of Tibet’s preservation of its culture is founded in the ability of the people to adopt various cultures and yet competently hold on to their own identity.
Sophistication and independence
History will always mark China as a stalwart nation that stood its ground for a long time in the face of many changing conditions worldwide. In recent years however, China has become subsumed into global pressure. Now China is opening its gates and embracing western culture to merge with its predominantly traditional policy. Tibet on the other hand also welcomes modernity in its fold but it does so with a touch of sophistication and independence.
The Dalai Lama of Tibet must have played a big role in making Tibetan culture as cohesive as it is now. The influential leader had brought a plain definition of what the Tibetan people are about. The people looked up to him, believed him and followed him. He would rule but not dictate. Majority of his constituents obeyed his doctrines because they wanted it. There was no force or intimidation notwithstanding political issues that had later beset his leadership.
Isolated but connected
Today Tibet epitomizes life in isolation but it stays connected with the outside world. Tibetans live in high mountains but they are not primitive in their philosophical views. They uphold their traditions but are open to modern innovations. And while the whole world goes scrambling to adapt to the rapid changes in life, Tibetans remain calm, sipping their tea beverage, sitting in the cradle of the mountains that is their home.