Monday, October 22, 2007
I just came back from seeing the Dalai Lama speak here in Atlanta. He has been offered a professorship at Emory University, and so he's been in town for that. There is an Emory-Tibetan Buddhist alliance, has been for years, and it's only recently strengthened with the DL accepting the professorship.
The talk he gave was, of course, incredibly, profoundly moving. I am still basking in his glow - he radiates pure peace, and humility. He is 1000% genuine - no act at all. His sense of humor, childlike charm, humility, peaceful persona, erudition, and pure PRESENCE of mind are deeply inspiring. I was moved to tears several times during his talk, and the audience was held enthralled by his very elegant, simple, POWERFUL message of inner peace and world peace. There's no cliche, and no pedantic agenda in his speech. He radiates warmth and hope and humility. I urge EVERYONE to see him talk if you have the chance, and barring that, rent a video of him speaking. He will transform you if you open your heart and mind to his words.
The thesis of his speech was the necessity of cultivating inner peace, and how we must disarm internally before we can disarm externally. We must dismantle internal weapons of hatred, jealousy, and anger in order to manifest peace outwardly toward other people, and countries.
He also touched on religious harmony, and the necessity of interfaith dialogue in order to strengthen one's own spiritual practice.
Years ago I was transformed by the teachings of Buddhism. I practiced Buddhism for a while somewhat formally.
Then I decided I was better off gleaning wisdom from Buddhist and other teachings on my own, away from Dharma Centers and churches the like. I am fully happy being a spiritual person in my own way.
But the Dalai Lama's speech bolsters my unwavering committment to peace and justice, and I realize that I must tenaciously practice peace within myself in order to push for external peace.