A Life of Peace and Hope
It’s not every day that you get to be in the presence of a man who radiates compassion, humility and wisdom with such intensity that you feel if God exists, this is what he must look like. When such an opportunity does arise, it’s difficult to forget this experience till the end of your days. If you know what I am talking about, if you have felt the presence of an angel on earth, then you too have probably been in the presence of His Holiness, the 14th Dalai Lama, for no other man that walks the surface of this earth who can come near this description.
His Holiness assumed the post of Tibet’s Head of State at the age of 15 in 1950, at a time when political turmoil with newly communist China was at its peak. The history and details of the events that followed this succession can be read in the many detailed and well written books on this subject or even on the internet and thus that is not what this post will get into, for this post is dedicated to the years of hope of a better future that the Dalai Lama has given to the entire world. Since his exile in 1959, His Holiness has been striving to fight for the rights of those who were left behind in Tibet and those who went into exile with him. Despite the atrocities faced by him and his people at the hand of the Chinese government, the Dalai Lama had nothing but empathy towards the Chinese in his 1989 Nobel lecture:
“I speak not with a feeling of anger or hatred towards those who are responsible for the immense suffering of our people and the destruction of our land, homes, and culture. They too are human beings who struggle to find happiness and deserve our compassion.”
His continuous efforts led to three resolutions passed by the United Nations in 1959, 1961 and 1965, to ensure the human rights and the rights of self-determination of the Tibetan people. However, the Dalai Lama appealed to the international community for his more holistic consideration of the world that we live in. In the many speeches that he has delivered around the world His Holiness talks of replacing the human feelings of greed, jealousy, etc. with that of compassion, acceptance, and righteousness. His focus on living in harmony with nature and keeping a check on inventions that are pitching fellow humans against one another is what people all around the world relate to.
“But war or peace; the destruction or the protection of nature; the violation or promotion of human rights and democratic freedoms; poverty or material well-being; the lack of moral and spiritual values or their existence and development; and the breakdown or development of human understanding, are not isolated phenomena that can be analysed and tackled independently of one another. In fact, they are very much interrelated at all levels and need to be approached with that understanding.”
It is difficult not to see the Tibetan community as our own brothers and wish for a better future for them with one of the leading spiritual figures around the world at the head of their struggles. On his 82nd birthday, we hope that the Dalai Lama continues to shower his love and blessings on the billions of destitute souls around the world for many more years to come, and sees the liberation of his people and country in this lifetime.