Sao Paulo, Brazil, 16 September 2011 - Today, His Holiness the Dalai Lama participated in a full-day open symposium on ‘States of Consciousness: Traditional Knowledge Meets Neuroscience’ heldat the Golden Hall of World Trade Center in Sao Paulo, Brazil. The symposium was co-hosted by Federal University of Sao Paulo and the Albert Einstein Research Hospital’s Brain Center.
The Golden Hall of the World Trade Center, venue for the neuroscience symposium with His Holiness the DalaiLama in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on September 16, 2011.
Before attending the symposium, His Holiness met privately with Dr. Walter Manna Albertone, Dean of the Federal University of Sao Paulo (UNIFESP) and Dr Claudio Lottenberg, President of the Albert Einstein Research Institute, as well as the panelists of the symposium which included Dr. Luiz Eugenio de Mello, Prof. Edson Amaro, Prof. Elisa H. Kozasa, Dr. Caroline Schnakers, Dr. Adrian Owen, Dr Tamara Russell, and Geshe Lobsang Tenzin.
Dr. Luiz Eugenio A. M. Mello, a former Dean of the Federal University of Sao Paulo, opened the symposium by giving a brief background of the UNIFESP-Tibet Partnership Program started during His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s previous visit to Sao Paulo in April 2006. Dr. Walter Manna Albertone, Dean of the Federal University of Sao Paulo (UNIFESP) and Dr Claudio Lottenberg, President of the Albert Einstein Research Institute, highlighted the importance of the symposium and welcomed the panelists of the symposium as well as audience.
The morning session of the symposium focused on a panel discussion on Minimal and Unusual States of Consciousness. At the session, Dr. Caroline Schnakers of the University of Liegue, Belgium, gave a presentation on Minimally Consciousness State—clinical implications; Dr. Andrian Owen, Canada Excellence Research Chair in Cognitive Neuroscience and Imaging of the University of Western Ontario,spoke on Minimally consciousness state—Neuroimaging research; and GesheLobsang Tenzin Negi of Emory University in Atlanta spoke on Consciousness from the Buddhist perspective. After the presentation His Holiness the Dalai Lama gave brief remarks. This was followed by discussion among the panelist. This session was moderated by Dr. Luiz Eugenio A. M. Mello.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama speaking to members of the press in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on September 16, 2011.
In the afternoon, His Holiness the Dalai Lama had aPress Meeting with the Brazilian media. At the press meet His Holinesssaid that too much attention is being paid to a secondary level of difference between people and neglected the basic oneness of human beings. Similarly, he said, not only in the past but even today there are conflicts in society based on religious traditions. Therefore, he said, he makes an effort to highlight these values and the oneness of human beings as well as promoting harmony among various religious traditions. He said that the media too has equal responsibility to spread information about these things, apart from reporting sensational news about day to day events.
Since Brazil is an emerging economy and it is growing rapidly, he said, there may be possibility that some mischievouspeople may want to take advantage and exploit the situation. As such, he said, it is important for the media to be alert and report objectively on the unhealthy practices in the society including corruption.
While commenting on question about His Holiness’ observation about progress in ecological protection and social development since the Rio de Janeiro World Environment Summit in 1992, His Holiness said in general, there is more awareness on the ecological issue and more enthusiasm among governments to redress the ecological destruction, which, he thinks, are positive signs, although some governments want to put the individual nation’s interest before the global interest, which, he thinks, is not a sound approach.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama with panelists at the neuroscience symposium in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on September 16, 2011.
After the press meet, His Holiness went to the Golden Hall of World Trade Center to join the second session of the openSymposium on ‘States of Consciousness — Traditional Knowledge meets with the Neuroscience. The second session of the symposium focused on panel discussions on Brain Plasticity and Contemplative Practice. Duringthe session, Dr. Adison Amaro of the Unviersity of Sao Paulo and Director of the Brain Center of the Sao Paulo based Albert Einstein Research Hospital, gave his presentation on brain plasticity implications in cognition and emotions; Dr Tamara Russell of London King’s College, spoke about clinical applications of contemplative practices; and Geshe Lobsang Tenzin Negi of Emory University spoke aboutbrain plasticity and contemplative practice. After presentations, His Holiness gave a brief remark and this was followed by lively discussionsamong the panelists including His Holiness. Later, His Holiness also responded some questions from the audience. The session was moderated by Dr. Elisa H. Kozasa.
Ideally, education is the principal tool of human growth, essential for transforming the unlettered child into a mature and responsible adult. Yet everywhere today, both in the developed world and the developing world, we can see that formal education is in serious trouble. Classroom instruction has become so routinized and pat that children often consider school an exercise in patience rather than an adventure in learning.
SIT COMFORTABLY ERECT, without leaning forward or backward, left or right. Close your eyes and think thoughts of good will. Thoughts of good will go first to yourself, because if you can't think good will for yourself—if you can't feel a sincere desire for your own happiness—there's no way you can truly wish for the happiness of others.
Yae-Hong Hsu, better known by his Buddhist name Chin Kung Shi, was born in February of 1927 in Lujiang County, Anhui Province of China. He attended the National Third Guizhou Junior High School and Nanjing First Municipal High School. In 1949, he went to Taiwan and worked in the Shijian Institution.
In the year 563 B.C., on the border of modern day Nepal and India, a prince was born to a ruler of a minor kingdom, the Sakyan. His name was Siddhartha Gotama and, at the age of thirty five, he attained, after six years of struggle and through his own insight, full enlightenment or Buddhahood. The term 'Buddha' is not a name for a god or an incarnation of a god, despite Hindu claims to the contrary, but is a title for one who has realised through good conduct, mental cultivation and wisdom the cause of life's vicissitudes and the way to overcome them. Buddhism is, perhaps, unique amongst the world's religions in that it does not place reliance for salvation on some external power, such as a god or even a Buddha, but places the responsibility for life's frustrations squarely on the individual.
This handbook, Buddhism 101—Questions and Answers, is a selected collection of Buddhist basic teachings for beginners. While composing this book, we thought in particular about those Buddhists who just initiatively started to study and practice Buddhism in environments of multiple religions and multiple cultures. Therefore, the basic themes introduced here serve to provide readers with a general view of the Buddha’s teachings in regard to both theory and practice. Given the limitations of a handbook, we dare not go further into intensive issues of Buddhist philosophy as doing so may lead to difficulties for beginners. However, the selected questions discussed here are the core teachings of Buddhism. As a beginner, you need to master these teachings firmly and precisely before going further into the Buddhist studies. We hope that this handbook will be a useful ladder to help you along the way in your learning and practicing.