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Peter Goodspeed: Dying as a political act: Centuries-old Buddhist tradition of self-immolation continues in China

“This was not the random act of a disturbed individual, but rather a single manifestation of a deeply rooted set of ideas and ideals in Chinese Buddhism that blossomed again and again in the history of pre-modern China.”

Photo: Tibetan exile Janphel Yeshi, 27, runs as he is engulfed in flames after he set himself on fire to protest an upcoming visit to India by Chinese President Hu Jintao, March 26, 2012, in New Delhi. Yeshi suffered life-threatening burns. (AFP/Getty Images)

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