16 Quotes from the Dalai Lama to Inspire You
The 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, was born on 6th July 1935 to a farming family in North-eastern Tibet. The Dalai Lama was originally named Lhamo Dhondup but was recognised as the reincarnation of the 13th Dalai Lama Thubten Gyatso. Dalai lamas are believed to be the manifestation of Chenrezig, Bodhisattva of Compassion and the patron saint of Tibet. The Dalai Lama began his monastic education at the age of six, he graduated at the age of 23 and was awarded the Geshe Lharampe degree, the highest degree which is equivalent to a doctorate of Buddhist Philosophy. After the Chinese invasion of Tibet in 1949/50, the Dalai Lama was given full political power, he went to Beijing for peace talks. When the brutal Chinese suppression of the Tibetan National uprising took place in Lhasa in 1959, The Dalai Lama had to escape into exile, since then he has lived in Dharamsala, Northern India.
The Dalai Lama presented a democratic constitution for Tibet which was reformed quite a few times. The new democratic constitution is called the “Charter of Tibetans in Exile” and it enshrines freedom of speech, belief, assembly and movement, it also provides guidelines on Tibetan administration keeping in mind those living in exile. After May 1990, Kashag, the Tibetan cabinet which was appointed by the Dalai Lama was dissolved along with the Tibetan People’s Deputies (Parliament in exile) and on a one-man one-vote basis the Eleventh Tibetan Assembly was elected by the people of Tibet, including those in exile in other countries. Since then, the Dalai Lama described himself as semi-retired.
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Here are the most notable quotes from the Dalai Lama.
"There is no need for temples, no need for complicated philosophies. My brain and my heart are my temples; my philosophy is kindness."
"In the practice of tolerance, one's enemy is the best teacher."
"Judge your success by what you had to give up in order to get it."
"When you talk, you are only repeating what you already know; But when you listen, you may learn something new."
"Whether one believes in a religion or not and whether one believes in rebirth or not there isn't anyone who doesn't appreciate kindness and compassion."
"Sleep is the best meditation."
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On March 14th, 2011, the Dalai Lama requested the Assembly of Tibetan’s People deputies to devolve him of political power, this would bring a historic end to the Dalai Lama having both spiritual and political authority, and like the first four Dalai Lama, the 14th Dalai Lama would only be a Spiritual leader of Tibet. This meant the democratically elected cabinet would have formal political control and the Ganden Phodrang, the institution of the Dalai Lama would continue and remain intact. On 29th May, the Dalai Lama signed the formal transfer and this brought an end to 368 year old tradition of the Dalai Lama being the spiritual and Political leader.
The Dalai Lama has always been a man of peace. In September 1987, in his address to the members of United States congress he proposed a Five- point Peace Plan for Tibet for a peaceful solution to Tibet’s worsening situation. In the year 1988, in an address to the European Parliament he once again suggested peaceful talks between the Chinese and Tibetans leading to a self- governing democratic political entity for all three Tibetan provinces. For his non- violent struggle for the liberation of Tibet, the Dalai Lama was awarded the Noble Peace Prize in 1989. He is the first Noble Laureate recognised to be concerned for global environmental problems. The Dalai Lama has received over 150 awards, honorary doctorates, prizes and such for his message of peace, non- violence, inter- religious understanding, universal understanding and compassion.
"The first step toward living a happy life is to treat every other human with kindness. There are several steps after that, but I can't remember right now."
"If a problem is fixable, if a situation is such that you can do something about it, then there is no need to worry. If it's not fixable, then there is no help in worrying. There is no benefit in worrying whatsoever."
"When you think everything is someone else's fault, you suffer a lot. When you realize that everything springs only from yourself, you will learn both peace and joy."
"Change only takes place through action, not through meditation and prayer alone."
"Today is the right day to love, believe, do, and mostly, live."
"Do not let the behaviour of others destroy your inner peace."
"If you don't love yourself, you cannot love others."
"I think that true religion is the kind heart."
"Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions."
"Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them humanity cannot survive."