Dalai Lama regales Delhi students with teachings on compassion

NEW DELHI, Mar 22: Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama has exhorted students to practise genuine compassion and a sense of respect for others in order to create a peaceful world which shuns war and violence.
“The 21st century belongs to the young. You have the opportunity to create a peaceful world by developing compassion for others. People should develop inner peace which will lead to a peaceful community, a peaceful nation and, finally, a peaceful humanity,” said the Dalai Lama.

His Holiness was addressing over 250 students from 13 prominent schools, including GD Goenka, Bluebells, The Sriram School, Springdales and Salwan from across Delhi and the national capital region.

The special talk on ‘Ethics and Compassion for Young Minds’ at the Taj Mahal hotel here was part of his annual teaching sessions in the national capital, which is in its third year.

Several institutions across the world, including MIT and Stanford, have now included training credit courses in Compassion based on the Dalai Lama’s teachings.

During his interaction, which lasted for over an hour, the spiritual leader spoke about religious values, equality amongst humans and various cultural philosophies.

Dressed in his signature maroon-and-yellow monk’s robes, the Dalai Lama seemed to enjoy interacting with his young audience which queried him on a variety of issues ranging from his spiritual practice to the role of technology and even one on whether he ever wanted to be somebody else.

The Tibetan spiritual leader dipped into the wealth of his experiences in interacting with various personalties and institutions during his travels across the world.

The Dalai Lama, who has officially retired from politics to lead the life of a simple monk, often used himself as the subject of his jokes during the talk.

“I never felt lonely. Loneliness is entirely a mental creation. I never think that I am special, I am some kind of great person because I am the Dalai Lama. I make it a point to meet everybody because I am also one out of the 7 billion people in the world and have the same emotions,” he said in response to a question.

Talking about the materialism of people in modern society, the Dalai Lama said, “Many times, I have seen some people from rich families sporting many rings on their fingers. Often even two or three rings on one finger. What use is it?”

“If they had 100 fingers, it would be okay; but they have 10 fingers, so why?” he quipped.

Referring to a frontpage newspaper advertisement he said, “One advertisement said that a new jewellery shop is going to come up in Delhi. When I saw that, I thought what a waste of money. While millions of Indian people are so poor… I think morally, it is not right.”

Talking about the inner beauty of women, the Dali Lama said he found that some women used make-up and applied eye colour which ended up making them, “look terrible and not necessarily beautiful”.

“Young people should not look at some jewellery and say, ‘oh, I want that kind of jewellery. Real beauty is inner beauty,” he said.

Stressing on the importance of practising a simple lifestyle, he said, “Taking adequate nourishing food and not too much drink will help for the better.”

When asked about the utility of technology in the modern world, he said, “I think technology is important but technology should be for humans and not humans for technology.”

Talking about the war and destruction unleashed in the world in the 20th century, including the nuclear bombing of the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the spiritual leader said, “War is part of history today.”

“A deeper knowledge of the mind is part of the ancient Indian psychology, which is much ahead of modern psychology,” he said as he entreated the students to not neglect the teachings of ‘ahimsa’ and ‘karuna’ as developed by ancient Indian civilisation.

The nearly 79-year-old spiritual leader said he was happy to meet young people because they were the future.


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