NEW DELHI: Thousands of students from over 80 schools in New Delhi, Gurgaon and Sonepat had filed onto the main ground of Convent of Jesus & Mary today, to hear wisdoms on ‘Compassion and Ethics’ from the leading spiritual leader, His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
His Holiness was received by authorities of the Convent of Jesus & Mary and members of the ITIHAAS society–the duo organisers of the talk. As His Holiness made his way towards the stage, he shook hands with a number of students who had lined up on the path to greet His Holiness.
“Young brothers and sisters,” he greeted the pool of students. “Whenever I talk, I always start with words brothers and sisters. The reason is we are all part of the seven billion human beings on this planet. The entire human beings start their life in the same way, we are born the same way and are also same in receiving love from our mothers. In the end, the way we die is same. Therefore, mentally, physically and emotionally, we are same on that fundamental level.”
His Holiness pointed that conflicts in our society and world were largely due to too much emphasis on the secondary levels of differences and resorting to violent actions.
“The only method to solve the conflicts is go to the fundamental level of human equality. When we accept that, there is no reason to harm each other… When we were young, we didn’t differentiate colour, religions or nationality. Then gradually as we grow, our mindsets change towards accepting these differences of positions, beliefs and nationality. But these are only secondary levels of differences.”
The optimistic Dalai Lama said, “United Nations alone can’t do much. It is the people’s movement that can bring change. People means combination of individuals. One individual with proper vision and effort can do. For example, one student can share with the another student. Then ten students can another ten, making it hundred and so on, it will build more and more.”
His Holiness made a stirring appeal to the youth to not remain indifferent to the crises in world and individually act towards promoting a century of dialogue and peace.
“All our hope is on you. Please think on building happier and compassionate world. Through education, we must make united efforts, not through religion or prayers. The generation of 20th century have created many problems which must now be corrected by the generation of the 21st century. If we start today and make an effort, you will see a different, peaceful, more compassionate world in the future.
“We need disarmament at both national and international levels. Whenever there are differences or possibility of conflict, try to solve that through dialogue based on mutual respect and sense of equality. That way, we can create meaningful dialogue.”
Human Intelligence combined with its basic nature of compassion and warm heartedness is the key to creating a genuine peace and happiness, the 81-year-old world icon said. “Those troublemakers in the world do have intelligence. But their intelligence is combined with hatred and anger which leads to destruction. We must use our intelligence with a far sighted vision.”
Promoting secular education of values and ethics, His Holiness said, “Modern education with its focus on material goals and a disregard for inner values is incomplete. Secular education should be included in modern education. The teachers must educate the values of warm heartedness, compassion, sense of oneness of humanity in the current education system.”
“At individual level, practice of love, warm heartedness and compassion will give you a happier environment. At national level, we must strengthen these values to promote happiness in the world,” he called.
His Holiness highlighted his unique outlook on belief systems in the world and the need for flexibility in that system to suit the changing time. He criticised the caste system in Indian society and the Sharia law which was created for a nomadic society as remnants of the old backward era. “Many of the old religious system were founded in the feudal system of society. Today we live in a democratic society so, there should be some modifications made.”
His Holiness added that he had “proudly and happily ceased the centuries-old tradition of Dalai Lama as temporal head of the Tibetan people.”
To a student who asked for one takeaway from the hour-long talk, His Holiness simply put, “Be kind, be compassionate. Use your intelligence with warm-heartedness.”
A special feature at the event was a live painting of His Holiness the Dalai Lama by Vilas Nayak, a self-taught artist.
Some of the schools participating in the talk were the Army Public School, Dhaula Kuan, Delhi Public School, Sonepat, Navy Children’s School, Summer Fields School, Khaitan Public School, Father Angel School, Noida, K R Mangalam World School GK 2, Sanskriti School, Meera model school, Delhi Public School, Gurgaon.
A total of over 1300 students and 300 delegates including educators, principals, historians, archaeologists and scholars attended the talk.
Later in the afternoon, His Holiness was invited for an interview on the Off the Cuff program with Shekhar Gupta, NDTV.