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July 25, 2011

The Dalai Lama Comes To Ann Arbor

This morning, as I was watching a story about an earthquake that hit my neck of the woods, I got a phone call. On the other end of the phone was a good friend telling me that he got tickets to see the Dalai Lama this Sunday! The Dalai Lama has long been a leader that I have studied and read up on and seeing him speak in person will be wonderful.

Over the past few weeks the Dalai Lama has been in the news because of the violence in his homeland of Tibet. Unfortunately, I know a few people that did not know who he was before the upheaval in Tibet started. Actually, I even had a friend today ask me who the Dalai Lama was. I find this interesting because if I had spoken the name of a leader who is, well, less than positive, I know that everyone would know the person. But this person with a positive message is overlooked by so many.

I am not a very religious person, which really doesn’t matter when it comes to Bhuddism, as much as other religions, because it seems as though the original Bhudda was trying to teach philosophies more so than religion. However, whether Bhuddism is a religion or not, the teaching of the Dalai Lama can be useful for religious folks or those that do not believe.

My interest in the Dalai Lama began to grow after he won the Nobel Peace Prize. I began to wonder who this man was and why he was so important to the world. As I began to read and learn about his story, I became endeared to his philosophies and teachings. A few years ago I bought a book called “To Live in a Better Way”. It was a collection of speeches that the Dalai Lama had given at various stops around the world. I keep the book handy and refer to it now and then when I am feeling negative about someone else or can’t see that the glass is half full. The teachings in the book are encouraging and inspire me to move past the bad and back to the good.

I think that this is the perfect time for people to see the Dalai Lama. The world is in turmoil in many parts of the world, including the Dalai Lama’s home of Tibet. This is the time for those that truly support peace to join hands and converse, no matter what their backgrounds are. I have a few friends that are..well, very Christian and they are shocked and very skeptical of my going to see the Dalai Lama. There is a misconception that his entire speech will be some type conversion ceremony. I am a firm believer that a person that has a good healthy message, no matter where they are from or what differences they may have is worth listening to. I can not wait to hear what message the Dalai Lama has to pass on this time.

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