The Telegraph
Tuesday , February 4 , 2014
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Dalai Lama: Ancient wisdom best

- Spiritual leader says modern education has led to degradation of values

Shillong, Feb. 3: At a time when citizens are in a state of retaliation against corrupt leaders, Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, today pointed out that “a lot of corruption” is taking place in India, a country viewed by the world as “religious”.

On his maiden visit to this hill city, the Dalai Lama was addressing the sixth convocation of the Martin Luther Christian University at U Soso Tham auditorium.

“This country is considered a religious country, but a lot of corruption is taking place. There are many corrupt people and, I think, the corrupt people are also highly educated,” the 14th Dalai Lama told the gathering.

Amid the presence of a galaxy of politicians and bureaucrats, including governor K.K. Paul and chief minister Mukul Sangma, his words met with thunderous applause from the audience which mainly comprised young students.

The Dalai Lama went on to say that some people offer prayers “to make their corrupt life more successful”. At the same time, he stressed that modern education, although highly crucial, has contributed to the degradation of values, giving rise to vices like corruption.

He, therefore, felt that ancient Indian knowledge must find place in modern Indian education system. Religion has become an instrument to cheat people, he added.

Despite the grim scenario, the Dalai Lama said, “India is my home” and that he was simply a “messenger of India”. The spiritual leader has been living in exile since 1950.

“Modern India is multi-cultural, multi-linguistic and multi-racial. It is like the United Nations. I feel the greatness of India. Its people are harmless and it is an example to the rest of the world as people are living together happily,” the 78-year-old Nobel laureate said.

From among the countries, he said China should learn from India.

“I tell my Chinese friends that they should learn from India. Some Chinese hardliners see Tibet as a source of danger. But we are not seeking separation from China,” the Dalai Lama asserted.

He said that for economic development, Tibet will remain with China provided the Chinese government respects Tibet’s unique language, script, culture and ecology. “They must be preserved,” he said.

While China can help Tibet develop, the Dalai Lama said, Tibetan Buddhism would help China.

Earlier, he applauded the ancient Indian education system and the teachings of non-violence and respect for other religions.

“You must gain experience through non-violence. Try to resolve differences through dialogue and make it a part of your life,” he said.

On the power of truth and the power of force, he said the latter is “very decisive in the short period” while the former may not be “immediately powerful”, but effective in the long term.

The Dalai Lama, who is being accompanied by the sikyong (prime minister) of the Tibetan government-in-exile, Lobsang Sangay, was bestowed with an honorary doctorate by the private university.

“Whatever I felt, I have expressed. I think that is all. This is my first visit here and on the first day I got a degree,” he said before receiving a standing ovation from the audience.

Tomorrow, the Dalai Lama will pay a visit to the Tibetan monastery at Upper Lumparing here. He will also conduct a spiritual teaching session at Polo Grounds.

An inter-faith meeting has been convened on Wednesday at the U Soso Tham auditorium that the Dalai Lama will attend.

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