DHARAMSHALA: His Holiness the Dalai Lama today began a four-day teaching on Chandrakirti’s Entering the Middle Way (Tib: uma jukpa) at Thekchen Choeling Tsuglagkhang, the main Tibetan temple in Dharamshala.
The teaching is organised at the request of a group of devotees from Taiwan. Over 5000 devotees from 69 different countries including local Tibetans from Dharamshala are attending the teachings.
In his introductory remarks, His Holiness the Dalai Lama spoke about faith based on reason and logic rather than blindly following the religion that you are born into. “While following any religion, including Buddhism, the practitioners should have a full understanding of the methods and concepts about that tradition,”His Holiness said.
His Holiness also expressed sorrow at the growing violence and destruction in the world caused by a myopic worldview of ‘us vs. them’. He emphasised the oneness of humanity and called for a world based on the notion of universal brotherhood.
“Desire for happiness is universal to all sentient beings. However, unlike animals, we humans have an inborn faculty of thought. Therefore, we should use this faculty to develop happiness through love and compassion,” His Holiness said.
Expressing sympathy with the victims, His Holiness recalled the tragic shooting of innocent public at a Las Vegas hotel recently, and said such tragedies caused by humans on fellow humans are despicable. He said such things arise due to a shortage of compassion and lack of respect for life.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama further encouraged secular education in formal academic courses and said modern education is insufficient to create holistic happiness as it focuses more on material development. He said a person who has studied secular education in school would be more compassionate as compassion will be instilled in his basic outlook on life.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama also recommended maintaining emotional hygiene along with physical hygiene. He said reduction in destructive emotions such as anger and jealousy will come about only if you realise the futility of such emotions. “If you keep harboring anger or jealousy towards others, it will be you who is at the loosing end, because you will remain mentally disturbed unless you resolve it,” His Holiness said.
Speaking about religious harmony, His Holiness the Dalai Lama lauded India for its shining example. “India is a land of diverse cultures and religions. Despite isolated incidents, all major religious traditions of the world exist peacefully in India which is a matter of great pride,” His Holiness said.
The teachings will continue for the next three days and will conclude on 6 October.