On Sunday I joined in a peaceful protest rally in central London to campaign about the situation in Tibet.
This has really struck a chord with me for some reason - I really care about it, and want what is best and right for the Tibetan people. I do believe the majority of Tibetans would like their independence and autonomy - to make their own decisions and not have their culture and identity swallowed up by China.
I personally have nothing against the Chinese people. China is an amazing nation which has experienced an incredible journey through history, and which has so much to offer to the world. It does sadden me, however, when the Government of China appears to dictate and suppress a set of people who simply want to live in peace, without fear or coercion, and want to worship and honour the values and traditions which are so integral and fundamental to their culture and way of life.
I hope that this year's Olympics will be an opportunity for Tibet to gain the recognition and independence which it is striving for. I hope the Olympics are a great success. I hope China can learn to release its grip on the freedoms of individuals and allow human rights and dignity to flourish in its people. Then it really can be the great, proud nation which it so fervently appears to want to be - and the rest of the world can look towards it with respect.
Here are some photos of my time at the rally.
This chap is a Mongolian monk who I saw the previous week at a talk for the Tibetan Foundation which I literally stumbled upon at St James' Church in Piccadilly ! I recognised him, but I don't think he recognised me.... ;)
This chap opened the rally with some bagpipe-playing