Kalon Tripa Visits Himalayan Institute
Tuesday, 29 July 2008, 11:04 a.m.
Dharamshala: Kalon Tripa Prof Samdhong Rinpoche delivered Monday a keynote address on his book titled “Uncompromising Truth for a Compromised World: Tibetan Buddhism and Today’s World with Professor Samdhong Rinpoche”, at the Himalayan Institute in northeastern Pennsylvania.
The book is a series of in-depth dialogues discussing the importance of preserving tradition and heritage and discussing the role of Buddhism in the age of technology.
Kalon Tripa spoke on issues such as happiness and suffering, nuclear proliferation, economic disparity, pollution, and religious intolerance, Wayne Independent website reported.
Some 150 people gathered in the auditorium to attend his talk, while others sat in two separate rooms with projection screens.
Speaking on war and poverty, Kalon Tripa said, “There are people dying of hunger, or because of a lack of medical facilities, yet billions of dollars are spent on weapons that can destroy the globe many times.” However, “All the world’s problems can be faced squarely with Buddhist traditions,” he added.
“The fly has a consciousness,” he said, “…[but] the human being has the ability to analyze reality, and realize his own unhappiness.” “It is the separation between [the realization] of the self and others [that] is the root cause of unhappiness,” he added.
In closing, Kalon Tripa reflected on the role of religious intolerance in the fueling the major international conflicts of the world. “The phrase (religious intolerance) doesn’t make any sense,” he said. “If you are religious, you are not intolerant. If you are intolerant, you are not religious….Ghandi once said, ‘I am a good Hindu; therefore I am a good Muslim.” He further said, “Religions are subject to each other. They are not competitors.”
Following the talk Kalon Tripa answered questions submitted by attendees. On Tibet’s relationship with China, he remarked, “In the 70’s people thought it was we opposed communism. It’s not that we’re against communism, or for capitalism. It’s about tradition and heritage.”
Earlier during his US visit, Kalon Tripa attended a long life prayer ceremony for His Holiness the Dalai Lama co-organized by the North American Tibetan Associations and Deer Park Buddhists Center.
He also joined His Holiness the Dalai Lama in attending the three-day symposium on the celebration of Tibetan culture in Aspen Institute.
Kalon Tripa will return to Dharamshala on 31 July.