Monday, April 16, 2012

The Dalai Lama in Hawaii

Yesterday, I had the privilege of seeing the Dalai Lama speak in Hawaii. 
Photo Courtesy of Honolulu Star-Advertiser
My impressions of His Holiness?  He is just so darn cute (is that wrong to call a spiritual leader "cute?")!  The Dalai Lama has this incredibly adorable childlike quality to him.  He erupts unexpectedly into a contagious case of the giggles.  And his visor!  I loved his charming little maroon visor!  I did a little research and found out that the reason he wears it is to shield his eyes from the bright lights on stage.  Apparently, instead of asking that the lights be dimmed to accommodate him, the Dalai Lama uses it as a lesson to adapt to the way things are.  He's also super funny and he's much more real than I thought he would be.  At one point of the Q&A, he even talked about using the bathroom:
Question:  Your smile makes me smile.  It suggests life is a gift to be enjoyed.  Are you always smiling even when not in public?
Dalai Lama:  Yes.  When I am in the bathroom, and still smiling, that looks silly.  In case, something difficult to come out, you need a little pressure.  No time smiling.  (He then asked the translator, "have you ever experienced that?")
Photo Courtesy of Honolulu Star-Advertiser
Overall, His Holiness delivered an inspiring, personal talk about training your mind, developing inner peace, compassion and education.

Here were some great quotes from his talk:
  • The very purpose of education is to reduce the gap between appearance and reality.
  • Prosperity must come through action, not prayer. Therefore, world peace must come through inner peace, at the individual level also. In order to have a happy life, inner peace is very essential, including a healthy body. Healthy mind, healthy body. Healthy body very much linked with healthy mind.
  • Through training of mind, try to develop proper mental attitude. Any attitude based on mental projection is unrealistic. Any decision made under strong emotion often becomes wrong. Because much emotion is actually a biased view. Through the view, you cannot see the reality.
  • At any level, unrealistic methods never bring satisfactory result.
  • What is the real basis of inner peace? It’s warmheartedness. Once we develop warmheartedness, that means consider all others just like myself. Every one has the right just like me to achieve happy life. With that kind of attitude, we automatically develop respect.
  • The 20th century a wonderful century. But that century became a century of bloodshed.  There’s no other way but to try to build this century as a century of dialogue, peace.  We must find how to tackle when we face problems, not using force, but through talk, with respect, listen to others’ point of view. That’s the only way.
To read his entire talk, see Civil Beat's transcript.
To see photos of the Dalai Lama's visit to Hawaii, please see slideshows by Civil Beat or the Star-Advertiser.

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