Washington DC, USA, 13 July 2011 - On July 13th His Holiness left for the teaching venue very early in the morning to undertake the self-generation prayers, part of the Kalachakra preparatory rituals.
Later in the morning, His Holiness visited Capitol Hill to meet members of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Speaker Penpa Tsering, KalonTripa-elect Lobsang Sangay, Special Envoy Lodi Gyari and Secretary Tenzin Taklha accompanied His Holiness. Chairman of the Committee, Senator John Kerry, and 11 members of the Committee were present.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama with Senator John Kerry (D-MA) and Kalon Tripa-elect Dr. Lobsang Sangey during his visit to the US Capitol on July 13, 2011. Photo/Tenzin Choejor/OHHDL
Senator Kerry formally welcomed His Holiness saying‘Tashi Delek”. He said he admired His Holiness’ message of peace. Senator Kerry said that Congress had the greatest respect for His Holiness as indicated by the Congressional Gold Medal bestowed on him in 2007. Senator Richard Lugar, the Ranking Member, spoke next. He, too, expressed his admiration of His Holiness and assured him that he had strong friends in the Senate.
Senator Kerry also welcomed Kalon Tripa-elect Dr. Lobsang Sangay. Speaker Penpa Tsering was also introduced to the membersof Congress.
In his remarks, His Holiness explained the devolution of his authority. He then talked about people being importantsaying that just as the world belonged to humanity, China belonged to the Chinese people. His Holiness also talked about his deep admiration of democratic principles and about how the Tibetan people appreciated the democratic freedom in the United States. His Holiness said he wantedto thank the United States Senate for the good support to the Tibetans.He reiterated that Tibetans were looking for a solution that did not involve separation of Tibet from China.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama with Senators Ben Cardin (D-MD) and Tom Udall (D-NM) during his visit to the US Capitol in Washington DC on July 13, 2011. Photo/Tenzin Choejor/OHHDL
His Holiness also talked about the situation in Tibet where there were increasing control in the people’s ability to preserve and promote their identity and culture. He said one source of encouragement was the growing interest in Tibetan Buddhism in the Chinese community. His Holiness highlighted the right of the 1.3 billion in China to know reality as also their having the ability to judge what is right and wrong. Therefore, His Holiness said that censorship was immoral and transparency was needed in China.
Dr. Lobsang Sangay informed the Committee members of the situation in Tibet and how there was a form of undeclared martial law in Tibet. Healso laid emphasis on the need to support education of the Tibetan people and to help them have economic sustenance. The senators and the Tibetan leaders discussed what the Senate could do to help the Tibetan people.
Following this meeting, His Holiness attended a separate function within the Capitol complex, where he was presented with the Mother Teresa International Caring Award for dedicating his life to promoting the values of caring, compassion and public service by former senators Robert Dole and Tom Daschle, honorary co-chairs and Mr. Val J. Halamandaris, executive director of the Caring Institute.
His Holiness speaking after receiving the Mother Teresa International Caring Award during his visit to the US Capitol in Washington DC on July 13, 2011. Photo/Tenzin Choejor/OHHDL
"Today we were honored to recognize the peaceful work that one man has accomplished because he truly cares for the peoplehe serves," said Senator Daschle.
"His Holiness is driven by a sincere compassion for people," said Senator Dole. "The Caring Institute was founded upon this same concept. Its mission is rooted in Mother Teresa's directive that we must reverse the poverty of spirit that exists in our world today."
"In Tibetan Buddhism, a Bodhisattva is anyone who is motivated by compassion and seeks enlightenment. The Tibetan name Dalai Lama means Ocean of Wisdom. His Holiness is the personification of caring, compassion and kindness," said Mr. Halamandaris. "Our goal is to highlight incredible people who give back to society in outstanding waysand who are truly making a difference in our world."
In his communication informing His Holiness of the award, Senator Dole had said, “No one better personifies the value of caring than you. Caring is, after all, a synonym for compassion – a value which is central to your religion. You have devoted your life to promoting this value worldwide.”
Mother Teresa was among those who had been honored with this award by the Caring Institute, which was “founded in 1985 to honor and promotethe values of caring, integrity, and public service.” The Institute draws its inspiration from Mother Teresa, about whom a documentary was shown at the beginning of the award ceremony.
His Holiness expressed his appreciation of the work of the late Mother Teresa and said he was honored to be receiving this award.
His Holiness then returned to the Verizon Center, the venue of the teachings.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama giving the Kalachakra preparatory initiation in Washington DC on July 13, 2011. Photo/Tenzin Choejor/OHHDL
The afternoon session began with the recitation of the Heart Sutra in English. (On July 11, 2011 the session had begun with the recitation of the Heart Sutra in Japanese and Vietnamese.) Following the recitation, His Holiness explained that in the Chinese translation of the Heart Sutra, the word “too” was not there in the following sentence, “the fiveaggregates, too, are by their nature empty.” He said it was there in the Tibetan version as well as in Sanskrit. He said the word “too” was critical in giving a profound meaning to the sentence as it emphasized the selflessness of the person as well as the selflessness of phenomena.
Thereafter, His Holiness completed the preliminary initiation for students, which included generation of Bodhicitta and the distribution of the protective string and the Kusha grass to study the dreams.
Smartphone Overuse, Youth Suicide and Buddhism as a Healing Source,
Youth suicide is disturbingly rising. Ashley Welch, in her article “What’s behind the rise in youth suicides?” (2017), gave some insights into the trend. The author mentioned potential causes for this trauma and notably pointed to “the correlation between the rising popularity of smartphones and increased rates of suicide and depression among young people” (para. 17). Although Welch did not offer a clear reason for the correlation, this point raises an awareness of an irony. We, as readers, may wonder, “How can such a wonderful entertaining device cause that terrible thing?” In this paper, I will discuss the roots of this pain, and then suggest Buddhism as a healing source.
Why Aren't We Teaching You Mindfulness?
AnneMarie Rossi, Founder and CEO of BeMindful
Harvard conducted a research study and they tracked more than 1,000 people from birth until age 32 looking for what made someone successful. What common characteristic or trait was seen in a successful individual? It wasn't their race, what language they spoke, what neighborhood they grow up in, or how much money their parents had. It wasn't how well they did on standardized tests or even their IQ. It was self-control; those who were successful, who had good careers, financial stability, loving relationships, and physical health. Those who were successful, were the ones who could focus, pay attention, and regulate their emotions.
The Buddhist community is extremely upset by the inappropriate and disrespectful use of the image of Buddha, The Buddhist community is extremely upset by the inappropriate and disrespectful use of the image of Buddha, in a display at the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) entitled the 'Eternity-Buddha in Nirvana, the Dying Gaul, Farnese Hercules, Night, Day, Sartyr and Bacchante, Funerary Genius, Achilles, Persian Soldier Fighting, Dancing Faun, Crouching Aphrodite, Narcisse Couché, Othryades the Spartan Dying, the Fall of Icarus, A River, Milo of Croton'. It can also be seen at: https://www.ngv.vic.gov.au/explore/collection/work/131149/
Although this display has been in place for some months, we have only just been made aware of its' existence. We are not usually outspoken, but this display desecrates the image of Buddha by placing images of these mythical images on him and in doing so, showing no apparent regard or respect for Him.
Prior to sharing some thoughts on the question, 'According to 2010 statistics, the number of Buddhists around the world is consistently increasing by approximately 5% to 10% per annum. What do you think are the main causes for this increase?', I should mention that I'm often 'open-mindedly skeptical' about such surveys, and the statistics gathered during such surveys. For where does the information come from and how is the information gathered, and for what purpose, and so on and so forth.
To give the briefest conclusion that I can think of to the question- 'Do you think that sectarian diversity affects the stability of Buddhism as a whole?', I would have to say, 'Yes' and 'No'.
My intention here is not to give a definitive answer, but to give readers 'food for thought', to enable each of us to be responsible and maintain pure intentions, to think for ourselves and develop genuine wisdom and compassion.
In the spirit of the Dharma, rather than dwelling on any possible problems, we should mainly focus on solutions to any such problems. With the hope of maintaining the integrity and purity of Buddhism in this world.
Why is Buddhism so diverse ? Andrew Williams, I think we can all agree that the reason for the many diverse traditions and paths within Buddhism is that all sentient beings, in one way or another, are different, both mentally and physically, and therefore each individuals needs are also different.
The Buddha explained that we sentient beings all have different and limited levels of understanding of this or that, and even if we focus on the very same thing, we will perceive it according to our own perspective. From our own limited viewpoint.
We tend to perceive things and others based on our own preconceived ideas and past experiences. It's as if we judge the whole ocean based on the small part of the ocean that we may think we know. The whole sky based on a few clouds.
As this Thursday 9 and Friday 10 November, Ven Chi Kwang Sunim will talk on "Women in Leadership" as part of the Prevention of Violence Against Women Leadership Program, BCV would like to invite you and members of your organisation to attend this important program which runs at two places.
Thursday 9 November 2017@ Hoa Nghiem Temple, 442-448 Springvale Road, Springvale South, VIC 3172
Friday 10 November 2017 @ Coburg Library Meeting Room, Coburg, VIC 3058
Time: 12.30-2.30 pm.