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Posts Tagged "his holiness the dalai lama"
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FPMT Mexico, representing the FPMT students in Mexico, met with His Holiness the Dalai Lama during His Holiness’ four-day visit to Mexico City. His Holiness taught on Shantideva’s The Bodhisattva Way of Life and spoke to over 15,000 in Mexico City on the importance of teaching secular ethics. More news and photos from His Holiness’ visit to Mexico City can be found on His Holiness’ website dalailama.com.
FPMT Mexico posted the above photo on their Facebook page, writing:
El Mandala FPMT con Su Santidad el Dalai Lama en la Ciudad de México. Gracias a todos por su servicio a los seres, por abrir su corazón, fomentar la armonía y por cultivar la mente de la iluminación. Ahora, a seguir las instrucciones que Su Santidad recomendó para los Centros y Grupos de Lama Zopa Rinpoche FPMT Mexico.
The FPMT Mandala with His Holiness the Dalai Lama in Mexico City. Thank you all for your service to all beings, for opening your heart, promoting harmony and cultivating the mind of enlightenment. Now, follow the instructions that His Holiness recommended for FPMT Mexico, the centers and study groups of Lama Zopa Rinpoche.
According to dalailama.com, on October 13, “Immediately after he had arrived at the Arena Ciudad de Mexico this morning His Holiness the Dalai Lama met with representatives of two local Buddhist groups. He was keen to explain to them that performing rituals and saying prayers is fine up to a point, but in the 21st century it is important to understand what Buddhism is about, which requires study. He also told them that scientists and others are taking greater interest in Buddhism for what it can tell them about the mind. A project is underway to compile materials from the Kangyur and Tengyur related to Buddhist science, philosophy and religion, which will make them easier to study in an academic way. He encouraged the making of such provisions in Dharma centers too.”
Mandala brings you news of Lama Zopa Rinpoche and of activities, teachings and events from over 160 FPMT centers, projects and services around the globe. If you like what you read on Mandala, consider becoming a Friend of FPMT, which supports our work.
Choe Khor Sum Ling (CKSL) is an active and enthusiastic FPMT study group in Bangalore, India. In June 2013, several CKSL members attended teachings by His Holiness the Dalai Lama in Dharamsala, India. It was a special teaching for Indian students on Shantideva’s Bodhicharyavatara (Bodhisattva’s Way of Life).
In August, study group coordinator Shanti Yajnik sent Mandala a piece written by one of the group’s members about his experiences receiving teachings at CKSL. Nidhi Aggarwal first came into contact with FPMT in November 2010 at the “Introduction to Buddhism” course at Tushita Meditation Centre in Dharamsala and has continued develop his understanding of lam-rim and other Buddhist teachings at CKSL. Nidhi writes:
Just to let you know, the first turning of the Wheel of Dharma for me in this lifetime was back in 2001, when I visited Sarnath and picked up a booklet on four noble truths. So, I shall call FPMT the second turning in this life!!! As I see it, the visit to Sarnath left an imprint in my mindstream, which ripened when I fell in love with His Holiness Dalai Lama’s autobiography, Freedom in Exile. I was never able to associate with a sect or guru, however, His Holiness’ smile, compassion and sense of humor went straight to my heart. His teachings were so logical to my deluded mind that I wanted to explore the teachings of the Buddha.
CKSL holds weekend teachings in Bangalore and I have been quasi-regular at the center for one and a half years now. What brings me back each time are the teachings from the venerables [who are Sangha members living at IMI House and studying at Sera Monastery]. They have made me question the mistaken view of grasping at ‘I’ and phenomena. The teachings on the stages of the path to enlightenment have engrossed me intellectually and as a way out of cyclic existence of samsara. Most of the other teachings that I have attended have focused on the nature of the mind, mind’s infinite potential or mind transformation. The teaching style of the venerables is commendable. If I was ever taught with so much dedication, perseverance, patience and motivation in engineering school or management college, I certainly would be working with NASA or McKinsey.
The Mahayana motivation of enlightenment for the sake of all mother sentient beings is at the core of the teachings. This conceptually annihilates my twenty years of education and another over ten years of work experience, competing each day for self-serving motives. Another teaching that deserves mention herein is the guru devotion – seeing our guru in the aspect of the Buddha. … It is extremely important to have living examples of our highest aspirations and His Holiness the Dalai Lama, is a living buddha of our times. I have been fortunate enough to receive his blessings in the way of teachings and initiations directly from him. I see him as father taking care of all my future lifetimes. I wish that all his holy aspirations be fulfilled spontaneously without a moment’s delay and wish him a very long and stable life for the benefit of all sentient beings.
Mandala brings you news of Lama Zopa Rinpoche and of activities, teachings and events from over 160 FPMT centers, projects and services around the globe. If you have news you would like to share, please let us know.
DALAI LAMA’S ADVICE: BOOK EXCERPT
By His Holiness the Dalai Lama
Our general condition in human society is that we all depend upon each other. We are social animals, and we must live and interact with one another. Yet it seems that we have lost any feeling of basic human affection or a sense of relatedness and closeness to others. Our society does not place any value on the idea of love or indeed show much interest in it. With material things being prized above all else, nothing is said, is it, about the importance of love for our fellow human beings?
Lacking any such feeling of love, instead we put all our energy into making yet more money. And if we are concerned solely with exploiting others whenever possible, exerting control over them whenever we can, forever hoarding and competing, we will end up using any kind of situation whatsoever to further our own ends. In such an eventuality, the principle of loving our fellow human beings will have no currency whatsoever. Yet without this ideal of human affection, there is no happiness in the family, no happiness between couples, and no happiness between parents and children. However many millions of us there are all living here together, in our hearts each one of us will feel lonely and isolated.
What about the feeling of joy in one another’s company? What about caring for other people and feeling they are our friends? What about trust and confidence in our dealings with others? They all seem to be cooling off. They seem to be lacking, don’t they? …
By Kathy Vichta
I have the best job in the world – especially for an old hippie! I get to buy some of the most exquisite objects imaginable, from some of the world’s best craftsmen, sometimes travelling to exotic places to find them because they must be as beautiful as possible. Working with some of the wisest and most precious people in this world, I organize to have these objects offered in a moving and wonderful ceremony. In doing this I am able to work with groups of Dharma students around the world, coming together with a common purpose, following the wishes of our teacher, and working for the benefit of His Holiness the Dalai Lama. What more could a girl want?
Since 1996, when I fell into the role of organizing the Long Life Puja with which we followed the Kalachakra Initiation that His Holiness gave in Sydney, Australia, it has been my great delight to have the responsibility of organizing the FPMT’s annual offering of this lovely event. At that time I had no idea what was involved but jumped in feet first and, with valuable help from old friends Ven. Thubten Donyo, Ven. Thubten Gelek and [Education Department’s] Merry Colony, everything fell into place remarkably well.
… The Long Life Puja involves many prayers and offerings requesting the lama not to leave us for the pure realms, but to stay in this realm to teach and inspire us. Ritual offerings steeped in profound symbolic meaning are presented to the lama in a gorgeous and very moving procession to the chanting of prayers and mantras. It has taken years for me to understand even the most superficial level of this symbolism, and deeper I go, the more levels there seem to be. …
DHARMA IN THE MODERN WORLD
By Phillipa Rutherford
On June 8, His Holiness the Dalai Lama returned in Christchurch, New Zealand, the earthquake-struck city he visited just after the February 2011 quake. At that time, His Holiness brought hope, courage and loving kindness, as well as words of wisdom about how to build in the future to a very emotional audience.
This year, His Holiness gave two two-hour teachings in Christchurch, with public talks also in both Dunedin and Auckland. In Dunedin, His Holiness visited the Dhargyey Buddhist Centre founded by the late Geshe Ngawang Dhargyey in 1985 and shared a very intimate time with sincere Dharma practitioners.
The main theme of His Holiness’ teachings was secular ethics and the need for inner values such as love, compassion, patience, tolerance and forgiveness. His Holiness spoke of these inner qualities everywhere he went. He was a special guest invited by the students at both the University of Canterbury and Otago University, where he answered the prepared questions from students in a relaxed conversational manner. His Holiness reminded the young people they were the future generation, encouraging them to develop compassionate responsibility for the well-being of the whole world, including the environment.
Due to the small number of people and it being a safe place, we are so fortunate in New Zealand that His Holiness’ visits are always very intimate with everyone receiving a personal blessing and greeting. The highlight was visiting the Dhargyey Centre in Dunedin, where His Holiness gave pith instructions on preserving the Tibetan culture, especially Tibetan medicine, which he sees as one of the most valuable forms of medicine available. His Holiness also gave specific advice to the geshes on what to teach at their Dharma centers.
His Holiness is like a ray of light wherever he goes, and it is amazing to watch the people and their reactions to this living bodhisattva.
Phillipa Rutherford serves as co-director of Chandrakirti Meditation Centre in Richmond, New Zealand.
DHARMA AND THE MODERN WORLD
By Cynthia Karena
His Holiness the Dalai Lama had arrived. Standing near the stage, organizing committee member Karen Mayer overheard the conversation on the security person’s headpiece.
“A whisper started, ‘he’s arrived.’ I can remember feeling this burst of emotion traveling through my body, and I looked at the woman next to me who was crying. There was such an energy coming from everyone around me,” Karen said.
His Holiness was invited by Geshe Sonam Thargye from the Drol Kar Buddhist Centre in Geelong, an hour’s drive from Melbourne, to teach on the Heart Sutra and the Eight Verses of Mind Training.
Ven. Phuoc Tan kindly offered his temple, the Quang Minh Temple in Braybrook, Melbourne.
Karen often drove for over an hour from her house near Geelong to get to Melbourne and beyond to attend seemingly endless meetings in preparation for His Holiness’ only Melbourne teaching for 2013.
“I am not a diligent Dharma practitioner as far as meditation and study, so another way to practice the teachings is to work and offer your time.”
Karen was part of a small group that had to be at the venue well before sunrise in order to be ready to welcome and register volunteers.
“The breaking of dawn across the silhouette of the large white Buddha statue in the garden was a memorable moment, as was sitting on top of the shrine room steps looking down at all the excited Tibetan audience thinking how special this must be for them to meet His Holiness.”
The Vietnamese volunteers at the temple worked tirelessly and with a minimum of fuss.
“The generosity of the Vietnamese community was a humbling experience. They worked very hard, fed us all delicious meals with smiles, and seemed to work around the clock to make the day successful. They opened their hearts and offered their space with warmth. It is an inspiring community.
“[I remember] the exhale at the end of the day, smiling faces, people happy and joyous, knowing everyone enjoyed the day and it was worth the effort,” Karen said.
“At the end of the day you can dedicate and rejoice that you benefited a few thousand sentient beings by being part of an event that that gave them contact with His Holiness’ wisdom and compassion. I don’t think I could say that about many of my other activities!”
What struck stage manager Elyjah McLeod is the Dalai Lama’s exceptional ability to draw together such a mix of people. “I love seeing the love in the eyes of the people when they see him. My mother was in attendance for the first time and also a young man that I have known since he was a dot on the ultrasound machine,” Elyjan said.
“It’s all like a dream state now and I’m waking up out of it. I feel fortunate and lucky to have been able to help in the smallest way that I did.”
The most memorable moment for Sangha care volunteer Carol Amos was when the Dalai Lama first stepped out of the car and looked over everyone standing there. “He connected with each and every one of us. He brought us all into his world, which I found incredible.”
Carol, despite no Vietnamese language skills, was laughing and working with the Vietnamese volunteers who tirelessly prepared food for Sangha and volunteers. “Seeing the dining room abuzz with Sangha of all different nationalities was memorable,” Carol said.
“But the biggest highlight for me is seeing how people are transformed after being in teachings with His Holiness. It’s incredible – the sense of community is very much alive and I feel extremely blessed to be able to be a part of this.”
Volunteering is an opportunity to apply the teachings, said volunteer and chair whisperer Brian McTaggart, who moved chairs and managed to transform the seating plan into reality.
“What I get out of volunteering is knowing I’m being the change I wish to see of the world. Every day I pledge to be of benefit to all beings,” Brian said.
“One day in service to His Holiness is a life well spent. It’s also great to work with like-minded others to bring about a great event. Making new friends and connecting with some I only see at such events. What a community. I wish there was an opportunity to do this sort of work more often.”
Cynthia Karena lives in Melbourne and contributes regularly to Mandala.
DHARMA AND THE MODERN WORLD
“His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s [four-city] tour of Australia went very well and very smoothly,” reported Tony Steel, director of Vajrayana Institute, the FPMT center in Ashfield, New South Wales, which organized the “Young Minds” and “Happiness & Its Causes” conferences with His Holiness in Sydney and Melbourne, respectively. “His Holiness seemed pleased with the tour and appeared to be well and energetic. At the end of the tour, we requested His Holiness to return. He agreed to come back to Australia in June 2015 to give Gyalwa Gyatso initiation and commentary on the five stages of Guhyasamaja.”
His Holiness the Dalai Lama completed his ninth visit to Australia June 13-23, 2013. The tour’s theme was “Beyond Religion, the 14th Dalai Lama on the Benefits of Living Ethically.”
During the 10-day visit, His Holiness traveled to Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, and, for the first time, Darwin, the capital city of the Northern Territory. He was warmly welcomed everywhere and particularly in Darwin, where the Sunday Territorian’s front page read “Dalai Charmer: His Holiness Wins Over Top End Crowds.” It continued, “The Buddhist spiritual leader had a strong message for Territorians: ‘We need to truly consider the oneness of humanity.’”
He spoke about the importance of indigenous and non-indigenous Territorians “living together” to create a happier and more harmonious culture. “Harmony is very possible – this is something that is not impossible,” he told the Darwin media.
During June 14-16, His Holiness gave a two-and-a-half-day teaching in Sydney on Jewel Lamp: A Praise of Bodhichitta, a relatively recent text by Khunu Lama [published by Wisdom Publications under the title Vast as the Heavens, Deep as the Sea].
His Holiness gave a sold-out public talk in each of the major cities he visited. The public events throughout the visit carried the message from His Holiness’ recent book, Beyond Religion: Ethics for a Whole World. Auxiliary events with Buddhist communities, the Tibetan community and other partner groups were included in the schedule. His Holiness attended and spoke at the “Young Minds Conference” [attended by 1,700] in Sydney and “Happiness and its Causes Conference” [attended by 1,800] in Melbourne.
In this most recent tour, more than 50,000 people heard His Holiness speak during his 10 days in Australia in the course of 20 events. Of these, 25,000 people heard him speak about compassion, kindness and secular ethics. Almost 10,000 attended Buddhist teachings in Sydney, Melbourne and Darwin. He met with 2,500 Tibetans, Mongolians, Vietnamese and Chinese people in different parts of the country and online streaming reached a further 100,000.
Dalai Lama in Australia (DLIA), which has managed His Holiness’ last six tours to Australia, is a not-for-profit company formed in 2001 by George Farley and Alan Molloy, both students of Lama Zopa Rinpoche. DLIA’s role is to assist the Tibet Information Office in Canberra to coordinate His Holiness’ tours to Australia. DLIA works out of a small office in Paddington and brings together staff prior to the visit. Lynn Bain, general manager, and the board of DLIA oversee the operations and keep the organization alive between visits.
His Holiness has now visited Australia nine times. Each tour has been of a very different flavor, context and purpose, but all have affected the Australian society in a deep and moving way. In addition the extraordinary success, each tour has helped His Holiness further his own goals of promoting human values, inter-religious harmony and bringing the Tibet issue to public prominence.
Sally Dudgeon is an active member of the international FPMT community.
You can see photo galleries from the tour on DLIA’s website.
During His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s visit to Portland, Oregon, in May 2013, His Holiness spoke on the situation in China at a press conference. His Holiness told the media that while things have been very difficult for Tibetans, he is hopeful for the future.
His Holiness cites as an example how many mainland Chinese are now coming to see him in Dharamsala, India and that they are showing genuine interest in Tibetan Buddhism. In addition, His Holiness said there is growing recognition that censorship in China is ultimately self-destructive.
“1.3 billion Chinese people have every right to know the reality. Once they know reality, 1.3 billion Chinese people also have the ability to judge what’s right and what’s wrong,” His Holiness said. “So, censorship is morally wrong and very harmful. … Trust is the basis of harmony and unity. Censorship destroys that trust.”
His Holiness also called for improvement of the Chinese legal system, saying it must come up to the level of international legal standards.
You can listen to His Holiness’ complete response to the question of Tibet and China:
“It’s very sad,” His Holiness the Dalai Lama told ABC News in April 2013, responding to questions about the reported role of Buddhist monks in violent and deadly attacks against Muslims in Myanmar (also known as Burma). “All the major religions teach us the practice of love, compassion and forgiveness. So a genuine practitioner among these different religious traditions would not indulge in such violence and bullying of other people.”
An April 2013 report by Human Rights Watch describes “the role of the Burmese government and local authorities in the forcible displacement of more than 125,000 Rohingya and other Muslims and the ongoing humanitarian crisis. Burmese officials, community leaders, and Buddhist monks organized and encouraged ethnic Arakanese backed by state security forces to conduct coordinated attacks on Muslim neighborhoods and villages in October 2012 to terrorize and forcibly relocate the population. The tens of thousands of displaced have been denied access to humanitarian aid and been unable to return home.”
ABC News asked what His Holiness would say to the Burmese Buddhist monks, if he had an opportunity to address them directly. “We are religious people,” His Holiness replied. “Buddha always teaches us about forgiveness, tolerance, compassion. If from one corner of your mind, some emotion makes you want to hit, or want to kill, then please remember Buddha’s faith. We are followers of Buddha.”
In May 2013, Reuters reported His Holiness called acts of violence perpetrated by Buddhist monks against Muslims in Myanmar “unthinkable.” “I think it is very sad,” he said, during a public talk at the University of Maryland, “I pray for them (the monks) to think of the face of Buddha.”
Archana Bharatee, a student of FPMT’s Choe Khor Sum Ling Study Group in Bangalore, India, reported to Mandala that several Choe Khor Sum Ling members attended teachings by His Holiness the Dalai Lama in Dharamsala June 1-4, 2013.
“It was a special teaching for Indian students on Shantideva’s Bodhicharyavatara. Every morning the teachings began with the recitation of Prajñaparamita Sutra and praises to the Seventeen Nalanda Masters. This teaching was focused on the first three chapters of the text.”
During the teachings, His Holiness emphasized the need for all people to practice love and compassion, gave an overview of the four noble truths, and discussed bodhichitta drawing from Shantideva’s writings. On the final day of teaching, His Holiness offered a Chenrezig initiation.
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Mandala Publications is the official publication of the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT), an international charitable organization founded by two Tibetan Buddhist masters, Lama Thubten Yeshe (1935-1984) and Lama Thubten Zopa Rinpoche. FPMT is a vibrant international community, with a network of 160 affiliate centers, projects and services, and members in more than 30 countries.
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