DHARAMSHALA: Tibetan spiritual leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama on Saturday called for ancient Indian traditions to be integrated with the modern education system to usher peace, understanding and more resourceful humanity.
Speaking to a group of over 2700 foreign and Indian tourists at the courtyard of Tsuglagkhang, His Holiness the Dalai Lama heaped praises on the ancient Indian civilisation that gave rise to the Nalanda tradition of Buddhism.
“Great Indian master, Shantarikshita introduced Buddha dharma, based on the Nalanda tradition, in Tibet. The Tibetan language itself was developed and enriched in the process of translating these great works of Nalanda masters into Tibetan. Since Tibetan is probably the classical language closest to Sanskrit it remains the most accurate means available to us today for expressing Buddhist ideas.
“Although the Nalanda Tradition has been somewhat neglected in India, it was kept alive in Tibet,” he said, reiterating his lifelong commitment to revive the ancient Indian knowledge in modern India.
He explained that while modern education brings physical comfort, the ancient Indian tradition focusses on inner wellbeing. He reasoned that reintroducing these fundamental inner values in the education system purely in secular context could bring spectacular scope for lasting peace on earth.
“As we grow up and pursue our education, we learn to disregard our basic human values. Instead, we pay disproportionate attention to secondary differences. Entire generations have been brought up with a materialistic outlook, in a materialistic culture and way of life. These observations give rise to a lot of problems, especially in light of the fact that essentially human beings are physically, mentally and emotionally the same.
“Ofcourse materialistic life is important, with that education of science, economy and technology are also important. But at the same time, ancient Indian knowledge of how to develop peace of mind, a mind with realistic, practical and wider perspective, that’s equally important”.
His Holiness drew attention to ancient Indian traditions that deal with concentration and insight, shamatha and vipassana, that have accumulated a profound understanding of the workings of the mind.
“Through education and training we can extend our basic human nature. This brings self-confidence, which is important and allows us to be more transparent, leading to trust, which is the foundation of firm friendship. It’s true to say that loving kindness is of value right from birth up to the time of our death.”
The Tibetan spiritual leader further described India as the spiritual home of Tibetans. “India is our home, not just for the past 60 years but all our knowledge and tradition has come from India”.
In his closing remarks, he said that a meaningful life is living one’s day to day life in helping others, and if that’s not possible, atleast restraining from harming others.
“Don’t be a slave of anger, be a master of your own emotions not through prayers but using your reason. All of us are equipped with loving and kind nature. These are the counterforce of destructive emotions. Through practicing reasoning you will get a conviction in this practice, then follows enthusiasm and further familiarisation with this practice, then compassion and compassionate mind will become part of life.
“I consider all of you as part of 7 billion human being. I myself consider as one of the 7 billion human beings. Future of oneself depends on each other. If we carry our lives in harming others, we will have to face negative consequences.
“So my brothers and sister, please think seriously. Each of you has the opportunity to make some contribution to a better humanity, better world,” His Holiness said.