Los Angeles, California, 4 May 2011 - On the last day of his current visit to California, on May 4, 2011 His Holiness the Dalai Lama received an award from Amnesty International and spoke at two universities on human rights, compassion and global responsibility.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama is presented with Amnesty International's "Shine a Light" award in Long Beach, California, on May 4, 2011. Photo/Don Farber
In the morning he left for Carpenter Performing Arts Center of California State University in Long Beach where members of Amnesty International received him. He first met around 100 activistsand made some brief remarks in which he expressed his appreciation of Amnesty’s work.
Thereafter, he entered the stage and was welcomed with great applause by over 1,000 guests and members of Amnesty. Ms. AnnBurroughs, former prisoner of conscience from South Africa, made the welcome remarks.
She was followed by Mr. Larry Cox, Executive Director of Amnesty International USA, who gave an overview of the human rights situation and the role AI was playing. He said Amnesty had decided to use the occasion of its 50th anniversary to “honor and celebrate those whose lives and words and actions challenge, inspire andmove us to never give up, to continue to do what we can, to grow our nonviolent actions on behalf of the freedom and dignity that belong to each and every individual human being.”
He continued, “There is no more powerful voice for human rights, for peace, and for non violence than the unique voice of His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso. For over a half a century he has, with boundless energy, tirelessly and peacefully defended the rights of people everywhere, while leading the peaceful struggle to defend the right of the Tibetan people to enjoy their own culture, language and religion.”
Talking about the impact of His Holiness, Mr. Cox said, “It is oftensaid that His Holiness is a symbol, a symbol of the power of truth, andnon violent action but he is much more than a symbol. He is an example, an example from which all peoples can learn. “
Mr. Cox along with three members of a Amnesty student group presented the first “Shine A Light Award” to His Holiness the Dalai Lamasaying, “At a time when people around our world are increasingly and atgreat risk rising up in the hope of a better world, at a time when his wisdom is needed more than ever, Amnesty International USA is honored topresent to His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama with the first ever “Shine aLight on Human Rights” award.” He said the award, designed by a Tibetandesigner and artist, Tenzin Mochoe, is modeled after the title of “Dalai Lama,” which means Ocean of Wisdom. Mr. Cox said, “The ripple represents the scope and reach of His Holiness’ unceasing compassion andthe potential of every human being to make a difference in the world.”
His Holiness the Dalai Lama delivers his keynote address at Amnesty International's "Shine a Light" Award Ceremony in Long Beach, California, on May 4, 2011. Photo/Don Farber
In his keynote address, His Holiness said he felt honored to receive the award and recalled that when the Nobel Committee announced the award of its Peace Prize to him, His Holiness had remarked then that personally he was just a simple Buddhistmonk, no more, no less, but that the award was a recognition of his small contribution.
His Holiness felt that the world was moving to a positive direction and talked about his conversation with the late Queen Mother in England in 1996. Since she had lived through the 20th century, His Holiness asked her whether humanity was getting better or worse. His Holiness recalled the Queen as saying unhesitatingly that it was moving in a better way saying that in the early part of the 20th century there was not much of awareness of concepts like human rights and self-determination, but that in the latter part of the century these awareness were increasing.
His Holiness said that Amnesty International is one of the sources of inspiration and hope. He said he wanted to thank AI on behalf of theTibetan people as well as on behalf of the millions of Chinese for taking up their cases. His Holiness likened the work of AI to one of giving the generosity of freedom from fear.
Asking the AI members not to give up His Holiness said that their work did have some impact even among those who did not care about human rights. His Holiness said that the power of force is temporary, but that the power of truth always remained.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama answersquestions from the audience during Amnesty International's "Shine a Light" Award Ceremony in Long Beach, California, on May 4, 2011. Photo/Don Farber
After his address His Holiness answeredquestions from five individuals, including one by Tenzin Dorjee, Executive Director of Students for a Free Tibet, who wanted to know how American students could play a role in bringing peace, harmony, justice and reconciliation to the Tibetan people. In his response His Holiness emphasized on the need to promote closer contact between Tibetans and Chinese and outlined his efforts at reaching out to the Chinese people. Another question was from Mr. Hussam Rafic Ayloush, Executive Director of the Council on American Islamic Relations in Los Angeles who asked for advice on challenging anti-Muslim sentiments and creating a more inclusive society in the United States. His Holiness said the tendency of generalizing the mischievous acts of a few individuals to a whole community was wrong and asked people to know the issue thoroughly beforecriticizing the community. He talked about his efforts at promoting better relations between Muslims and Buddhists in India.
Another question was by Asif Chowdhury, a gay rights activist, who asked what can the youth do to ensure that all young people, especially those picked on because they appear to be different, feel safe and secure? His Holiness responded that finding a legal recourse was one way. Additionally, he said there was the need for greater understanding and education in moral ethics and concern for others. He jokingly said that some times legal recourse may become more of a problem with people without knowledge or education liable to be manipulated. Here he quoted aTibetan saying about “Gods turning demons and medicine becoming poison.”
In the afternoon, His Holiness left for the University of CaliforniaIrvine. He first met with University Chancellor Michael Drake and UC Irvine XIV Dalai Lama Scholars, a group of students who demonstrate knowledge of, academic work and belief in leadership as it relates to ethics, peace and positive national and global relations.
His Holiness then gave a public talk in the University’s Bren Events Center on Compassion and Global Leaders. His Holiness was introduced by Chancellor Drake who welcomed him back after his 2004 visit. The Chancellor also said that the Dalai Lama Scholarship was being made international.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama greets the audience before his public talk at the University of California Irvine on May 4, 2011. Photo/Cindy Love
HisHoliness addressed the crowd of over 5,000 by expressing his appreciation of the Dalai Lama scholars saying this was an indication that his words about educating in compassion were being taken seriously.
His Holiness then talked about the need to develop a calm mind, which was needed to cultivate compassion. He said a calm mind couldn’t be developed when individuals have fear and anger. He said it was related to self-confidence and inner strength. His Holiness then talked about three different ways that could bring about warm heartedness; through a theistic belief of total submission to the will of God; through a non-theistic belief in the law of causality; or through a secular way by promoting secular ethics.
His Holiness said being warmhearted was a criterion of leadership, which also involved being long sighted, full of vision and being practical.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama speaking at the University of California Irvine on May 4, 2011. Photo/Cindy Love
His Holiness then answered a few questions submitted by the audience. These included what would be one change he would choose if he had the capability (His Holiness responded that this was unrealistic) to best way to promote inter-religious harmony. His Holiness talked about four ways to do this; by encouraging discussions among scholars so that they can think about commonality in purpose of all religions; by having meetings among practitioners such as the one hehad with the late Trappist monk Thomas Merton that enabled him to have good understanding of Christianity; by having summits of religious leaders like the one convened by the former Pope in Assisi; and by goingon group pilgrimages to sacred places of the different religions.
His Holiness then went to address a youth summit that involved bringing together youth for positive service to the community. The session began with a special music titled Diversity composed in honor ofHis Holiness by a nine-year old piano prodigy Emily Bear.
In his remarks, His Holiness said he was happy to see young boys andgirls actively involved in compassionate activities. His Holiness talked about the youth being those who will direct where the 21st century heads as he and some of the others gathered belonged to the 20thcentury.
His Holiness said much of the tragedy in today’s world is on accountof emphasis on secondary values like nation and religion instead of having a global outlook. He called for the need to inculcate a feeling of global responsibility and to incorporate teachings in moral ethics inthe education system.
Among participants in this session included Will.I.Am from the musical group The Black Eyed Peas, World Surfing Champion Kelly Slater, and some others. His Holiness’ next program is in Minnesota.
The story of the murder of a law ex-student named Raskolnikov is told in Dostoevsky’s “Crime and Punishment”. After suppressing his crime for several days in tremendous agony and terrible suffering in his conscience, Raskolnikov resolved to confess his wrongdoing to his companion, Sonia. In his confession, Raskolnikov reveals some motives for his crime, but he does not explain exactly why the elderly woman ought to be murdered. The tale then presents a mystery, a crime, as a result of Raskolnikov’s predestination. The purpose of this article is to prove that the motive of Raskolnikov’s crime is not his destiny, but rooted in his mind.
The Eight Precepts with Right Livelihood as the Eighth (Ājīvatthamaka Sīla) Dhamma Teachers Certificate
EN074 -__ Feb2010 5 8 Precepts Diacritials
Requirements and Ceremonies for the Five Precepts (Panca Sila),
The Eight Precepts with Right Livelihood as the Eighth (Ajivatthamaka Sila),
Dhamma Teachers Certificate, issued by the Buddhist Group of Kendal
(Theravada) and Ketumati Buddhist Vihara at Wesak 2006).
Updated February 2010
Venerable Rewata Dhamma born in Myanmar [Burma], was head of the Birmingham Buddhist Vihara until his death in 2004. His book Maha Paritta: The Discourses of the Great Protection (With the Threefold Refuges, Precepts, Salutations to the Triple Gem, Dependent Origination and Metta Bhavana), gives the formula in Pali and English for requesting Ajivatthamaka Sila (The Eight Precepts with Right Livelihood as the Eighth). (pages 9-12)
Venerable Balangoda Ananda Maitreya Mahanayaka Thera Abhidhaja Maharatthaguru Agga Maha Pandita (1896-1998)
Venerable Balangoda Ananda Maitreya, born in Sri Lanka, attended the Sixth Buddhist Council held in Myanmar [Burma] (1954-56). In 1956, during the third session of the Council, he served as Chairman of the Convocation for a few weeks. The Council was convened by the Myanmar [Burmese] government to prepare an authorized re-edit and reprint of the entire Tipitaka (the Pali Canon) and its commentaries. Venerable Ananda Maitreya was appointed the Sri
The BEP Buddhist Embroidery Project was started by attendees of the London Buddhist Vihara (Monastery) in 1994. The BEP decided to teach embroidery to people who had not learnt it in childhood. The late Venerable Apparakke Jinaratana, a Theravada Buddhist Bhikkhu (monk), who lived in a cave in Sri Lanka, near a very poor village, was using very old newspapers (supplied by villagers) as tablecloths. The BEP decided to embroider tablecloths, wall hangings and sitting cloths for his use. Although items are given to one monk, they actually belong to the whole of the Bhikkhu Sangha [Order of Buddhist Monks] according to the Vinaya (Buddhist Monastic Discipline). In Asian villages, washing is done in streams and waterfalls, and hung to dry in the hot sun, so items do not last as long as they do in the west.
by Venerable Dr Balangoda Ananda Maitreya
Mahanayaka Thera Abhidhaja Maharatthaguru Aggamaha Pandita DLitt DLitt (1896-1998)
and Jacquetta Gomes Bodhicarini Upasika Jayasili.
Introducing Buddhism was originally published by The Buddhist Society London in 1988, to accompany The Buddhist Society’s Introducing Buddhism Course, on which Jacquetta Gomes was one of the teachers.
Introducing Buddhism has subsequently been published by Buddhist organisations in England, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Taiwan, and the USA. Introducing Buddhism is available on several websites including Access to Insight, CBE Chinese Buddhist Encyclopedia and Google Books. Introducing Buddhism was launched by the BCC Buddhist Cultural Centre in Sri Lanka with 24 other books under the patronage of Venerable Dr K. Sri Dhammananda Chief Sangha Nayaka of Malaysia and Singapore, in December 1997.
As a child, my mother Enid often said to me, “There is no such thing as a silly question,” and then would add, “unless.” This latter word was left hanging, and I eventually realised that it was up to me to learn the depth of its meaning.
At the same time that Enid was planting seeds for reflection, my first spiritual teacher, Ven. Lama Senge Tashi, encouraged me to cultivate more skilful thoughts, speech and actions. Sometimes I would try to verbally assert “I” or “Me,” and Lama would respond with, “Who is speaking?” or “Who is asking?”
During the Covid-19 pandemic a dharma sister passed from this life. Her name was Robyn. Although she did not call herself a Buddhist, nevertheless, Robyn had a special connection with the deity Medicine Buddha.
Over the six years that I worked with her, in my role as a hospital chaplain, Robyn frequently asked me to chant the mantra of Medicine Buddha and guide her through the visualisation. During her many stays in hospital, this particular practice brought comfort to her while she was experiencing chronic pain, anxiety and fear of the unknown. The medications she took would sometimes cloud her memory, so I would guide her through the details of the visualisation and begin chanting:
Once, as I was about to hold a summer Dharma class on a beach, as the first students began to arrive for the session I picked up two rocks and carefully placed them, one on top of the other, on to a much larger rock base. Observing what I had just done, three students approached: a young married couple and their five year old son.
Nguyện đem công đức này, trang nghiêm Phật Tịnh Độ, trên đền bốn ơn nặng, dưới cứu khổ ba đường, nếu có người thấy nghe, đều phát lòng Bồ Đề, hết một báo thân này, sinh qua cõi Cực Lạc.
May the Merit and virtue,accrued from this work, adorn the Buddhas pureland, Repay the four great kindnesses above, andrelieve the suffering of those on the three paths below, may those who see or hear of these efforts generates Bodhi Mind, spend their lives devoted to the Buddha Dharma, the Land of Ultimate Bliss.