"St. Valentine's Day began as a liturgical celebration of one or more early Christian saints named Valentinus. The most popular martyrology associated with Saint Valentine was that he was imprisoned for performing weddings for soldiers who were forbidden to marry and for ministering to Christians, who were persecuted under the Roman Empire..."- from Wikipedia
Today, 14 February 2013, it feels like the story has turned another terrible full circle : news arrives of the 100th self-immolation by a Tibetan seeking freedom for Tibet :
This morning we received the sad news that the 100th self-immolation by a Tibetan living under Chinese rule has taken place. Lobsang Namgyal, a 37-year old Tibetan monk from Kirti Monastery, was known as a serious and exceptional scholar. He set light to himself and died in Dzoge on 3 February.
Due to the security clampdown in Tibet, this news only reached us, via the exiled Kirti monks, on 13 February, the same day that a young monk set light to himself in Nepal. The monk, who has not been named and whose status is unknown, staged his protest near Kathmandu's Boudhanath stupa on the third day of Losar (Tibetan New Year).
- Australia Tibet Council email
CLICK HERE to view a (non-violent) 3 minute video of the 100.
Here, from the video, a few of these portraits...
"Twenty-year-old Tenzin Wangmo, a nun at Dechen Chokorling near Ngaba town, called for religious freedom in Tibet and the return on the Dalai Lama as she set herself on fire outside of the nunnery. She died at the scene after less than 10 minutes. Sources have reported militarization intensified at Dechen Chokorling nunnery and the surrounding areas. She is the first woman to self-immolate in the history of Tibet."
A Person Looks At A Work Of Art/
someone looks at something ...
In further such news today, this report from SBS :
China blocks Aussie official's Tibet visit
14 FEB 2013, 2:03 PM - SOURCE: AAP
Foreign Minister Bob Carr says Australia's ambassador to China has had no luck getting Beijing's permission to visit Tibet.
Australia's top diplomat in China has been unable to win Beijing's permission to visit Tibet after almost a year of trying.
Foreign Minister Bob Carr announced in March 2012 that Ambassador Frances Adamson would seek to travel to Tibet to talk to locals and look into why a growing number of Tibetan pro-independence protesters were setting themselves on fire.
"Unfortunately I'm not able to share encouraging news," Senator Carr told a Senate estimates hearing in Canberra on Thursday.
Ms Adamson had made several requests but so far to no avail.
"I regret that I can't report progress," he said.