Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama on Thursday interacted with staff and students of the Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Rohtak via video conferencing and asserted that India is a country with thousands of years of tradition that promotes Ahimsa (non-violence) and Karuna (compassion).
The session on the topic “Facing Challenges with Compassion and Wisdom” was attended by thousands of people across the world. Expressing his delight at the opportunity to speak with Indian friends, he said that people of many religions coexist in harmony here.
“I came to India as a refugee due to conflict in Tibet. I was really captivated by the religious harmony of this nation. I believe that India is a living example of religious harmony across the world,” said Dalai Lama.
He further stated that the age-old tradition and religious peace of the country can help make significant contributions to religious harmony on this planet.
Earlier, he said the western world thought of India’s way of life as backward but now they are changing their view. The western world too realizes that the Indian way of life is best for maintaining world peace and harmony, he added.
He also encouraged students not to focus on what they can get but focus on what they can give.
He stated, “We need to rekindle our own age-old Ahimsa and Karuna traditions. In order to create a peaceful and joyful environment, human nature needs to be more sympathetic. Together, Ahimsa and Karuna in our culture may teach the world a path of tolerance, thoughtfulness, and compassion.”
Talking about his affection for India, he said, “I was born in Tibet. The culture of Tibet is highly based on Buddhism and more specifically, on Nalanda tradition. I have been staying in India for many decades now. I really enjoy Indian freedom and religious harmony. Thus, culturally, I really feel I am an Indian.”
Responding to the questions of students, he emphasized the need for oneness among seven billion people and broad thinking.
He said, “Today, we are more focused on the short-term goals. As members of the larger society, we only focus on ourselves. We should be more empathetic towards everyone, irrespective of faith, race, or nationality.”
His Holiness’s words echoed in everyone’s mind: “Show consideration for other individuals, not just for ourselves, but for the environment, for everybody on this planet to coexist.”
A student asked, “Many youngsters feel that in order to have scientific temper they must detach themselves from religion”.
He replied that the pursuit of truth cannot come without being a good person and a good person must have strong values. “Religious teaching can often provide the strong values needed to engage in scientific pursuits,” said Professor Dheeraj Sharma, Director, IIM Rohtak.
He added, “Thoughts shared by His Holiness shall allow us to think differently about how we see the world and change our attitudes.”