Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Shake Hands With the Octopus: The Fate of Buddhist Treasures After the Quake

I am going to run this rather disturbing series of photos from Xinhua, and then we might append just a wee bit of commentary.

In case you didn't notice, these are what used to be called propaganda photos, and they are intended to make a case. The case is, while we were busy saving lives, we were also busy saving "cultural relics." Any damage done to said "cultural relics" was done by the earthquake and not by us. We are guarding and preserving "cultural relics," and we are making a meticulous record of everything we find.

There is also a darker sub-text. That mani wall you see collapsed and killed a woman. That statue of Guru Rinpoche and the stupas did not protect you. We are protecting them. We are protecting you. We are the ones who make the decisions.

To be effective, a propaganda photo must instantly communicate an obvious point to the target audience, and at the same time, leave a subliminal imprint carrying the propagandist's true message.

Those are armed, paramilitary police in the photographs.

Read as you will.

Nothing is real. 

Note: We are continuously updating links to earthquake coverage at our consolidation page, here.

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3 reader comments:

Anonymous said...

Apart from Buddhist teachings on impermanence, cause and effect, etc, how would you educate "baby" Buddhists who may be misled by "sub-text" and "subliminal imprint" ? By the way, other religions may also capitalise on those photos and tragedy for their ends (although they also have a long history of not receiving "divine" help, but they are ignoring facts) .

History of Chinese Medicinal Wines/w Recipes! said...

Chinese soldiers rescuing Buddha images!?? May every single one of them receive immeasurable blessings.

Propaganda works on both sides. Soldiers seeing these pics will feel that this is their job now. It will probably resonate somewhere deep inside.

I love your blog by the way. If only you could give a few more details about the astrology.

Anonymous said...

Chinese Using Earthquake for Political Purposes

I bet that whole area becomes a Chinese Disneyland Monastery after this...

Carl Jung correctly pointed out that sentamentality usually provides a thin covering for violence.

I am not fooled.

Until the Chinese leave Tibet and pay reparations to Tibet and the victims of Mao, etc., and remove Mao's picture from all their money and Tianenmen Square, etc. their government will continue to be the "fruit of the poisonous philosophical tree" and produce almost nothing but suffering. The infallible laws of interdependent arising...