(TibetanReview.net, May 28) — The Dalai Lama has offered to make a personal donation of $ 100,000 as an effort to save the Department of Religious Studies at Florida International University (FIU), according to several local news reports May 25. The department is slated to be closed, along with several others, as part of the state’s $27 million budget cuts for the university.
The 14th Dalai Lama cuts a familiar figure, with his shorn head, hedgerow-thick eyebrows, tinted eyeglasses, smiling visage and loose-fitting maroon and saffron robes.
“I am just a simple Buddhist monk — no more, nor less,” he has said.
But likening the Dalai Lama to “a simple Buddhist monk” is akin to saying the Pope is just another priest….
…Many of us would recognize him on the street, and yet we know little about him….
People sometimes ask me for a blessing because they think I can heal them. Healing power — nonsense! Miracle power — nonsense. I’m just nothing. Just a human being. Just the same as you.”
Hundreds gathered at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology as the Dalai Lama, speaking from the seated, cross-legged position of a sage, officially opened MIT’s Dalai Lama Center for Ethics and Transformative Values.
“The 20th century has been the century of violence. The 21st century should be the century of dialogue.”
Speaking to a packed Events Center this past Friday, His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama’s message was one of compassion and peace for all human beings. During his fourth visit to UCSB, the Nobel Laureate sat cross-legged before nearly 5,600 attendees for two lectures and argued for peaceful solutions to contemporary global problems.
UCSB Religious Studies Professor Greg Hillis delivered a lecture on April 8, 2009 at the Unity Church in Santa Barbara. This event was one of many leading up to the April 24 appearance by the Dalai Lama. (voice only)
In the May issue of In These Times, Stephen Asma takes a decidedly middle path on the situation in Tibet (article not available online), and recommends a cooling of the rhetoric on both sides. He cites problematic “doublespeak” from both China and the Tibetan exiles, influencing how the West has framed the debate: …
With hope of return to Tibet diminishing, Dharamsala takes on the trappings of permanency
After 50 years of exile and an uncertain future at best, this Indian hill city of Dharamsala in the North Indian state of Himal Pradesh is increasingly looking like the last stop for the thousands of Tibetans who settled here after their 1959 flight to escape Chinese domination.
…in a cozy conference room in the middle of a pine forest right under the snow-capped mountains, the Dalai Lama and a select group of neuroscientists, philosophers from some of America’s leading universities and a bunch of dharma followers, including Hollywood star Richard Gere, were locked in intense discussion on the issue of self. For five days, they discussed the concepts of attention, memory and the phenomenological study of the mind as part of the Mind and Life Dialogue – an interface between Buddhist monks and neuroscientists to find cross-cultural ground between the two traditions.
I wasn’t aware that neuroscience was a tradition, but it’s a good article anyway.
Groundhog Buddhism – Mind over Matter
Although he is only 19, the Panchen Lama has already stepped onto the public stage to praise the Chinese Communist Party.
It all began — as good stories often do — in a preposterous way. It was late 1971. Hong Kong-born Victor Chan, who now resides on Bowen Island, was chatting with two young Western women in a teahouse just off Kabul’s famous Chicken Street. It was the place every trans-Asian traveller stopped on the so-called Hippie Highway.
Two men sitting nearby invited the three foreigners to an Afghani banquet the following night and they naively accepted. The next evening, somewhere in the foothills of the Hindu Kush, a rifle was produced, rape discussed, and murder threatened, as the three captives rode with their kidnappers into the mountains. Days passed.
Under these circumstances, Chan, then 26, began a clandestine love affair with one of the women. Cheryl Crosby, a student of Buddhism in New York City, confided to him that she was on her way to India to visit the Dalai Lama. She had a letter of introduction.
Chan agreed that if they escaped their captors, he’d join her on her pilgrimage.
“In the present circumstances, no one can afford to assume that someone else will solve their problems. Every individual has a responsibility to help guide our global family in the right direction. Good wishes are not sufficient; we must become actively engaged.”
— His Holiness the Dalai Lama, from “The Path to Tranquility: Daily Wisdom” (Snow Lion Publications)
Pretoria — The Catholic archbishop of Durban, Cardinal Wilfrid Napier, has sharply criticized a decision by the government to block the entry of the Dalai Lama into the country to attend a peace conference this week.
Mar. 11–DOHA, Qatar — Tibet’s spiritual leader in exile has been seeking his homeland’s autonomy from Chinese rule for half a century.