New Delhi — Speaking to the 5th convocation 549 graduate students, including the first PhD, at the Ambedkar University in Delhi, His Holiness the Dalai Lama recommended more attention being given to understanding the workings of the mind and emotions.
The spiritual leader of Tibet participated in two such events in New Delhi, on Friday – one, the 'fifth Annual Convocation' at Ambedkar University, focused on peace and non-violence, the other,' Awakening the sanctity of life: Healthy Mind, Healthy Body' organised by the Tibet House and Men-tsee-khang.
His Holiness was Chief Guest at the 5th Annual Convocation of Ambedkar University in Delhi, on December 9, 2016. He was welcomed by the Vice-chancellor Shyam Menon to the campus in Old Delhi, where he joined the convocation procession.
Chancellor Najeeb Jung, who is also Lieutenant-Governor of Delhi, praised the steady progress the University has made. Welcoming His Holiness as Chief Guest, he recalled what he had said in his Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech when he acknowledged Mahatma Gandhi, leader of the movement for non-violent change, as a mentor.
Najeeb Jung said that our country is land of Lord Buddha and land of Guru Nanak, Kabir and Gandhi. He also said that the Almighty resides in each one of us.
In his introduction to the event the Vice-chancellor mentioned that the University had been functioning for 8 years and that at this 5th convocation 549 students would graduate, including the first PhD. He also noted that 66% of this year’s graduates were women. Diplomas and degrees were awarded to their respective recipients.
In his address, His Holiness congratulated all the graduates, teasing them that if they were anything like him, they would have had to work really hard at the end of their studies to get through their exams. He referred to the special amenability of the human brain to education. However, noting that simple warm-heartedness is a clear source of happiness, he recommended more attention being given to understanding the workings of the mind and emotions.
“Ancient Indian knowledge has much to say about this. Modern Indians tend to neglect this aspect of their heritage, but we Tibetans have kept it alive for more than 1000 years. If it doesn’t interest you, forget it, but if it does, think about how you can put it into effect.
“If you are honest, truthful and transparent, you’ll be a good human being able to contribute positively to society. These are good grounds to be optimistic.”
The programme ‘Awakening the sanctity of life: Healthy Mind, Healthy Body’- marked the celebration of 50th Anniversary of Tibet House and Centenary of Men-Tsee-Khang at the Thyagaraj Stadium in New Delhi, the capital of India, on Friday, December 9, 2016.
Gifts of images of the Buddha were presented to His Holiness and his fellow guests, Lt. Governor of Delhi, Najeeb Jung, Minister of State for Home, Kiren Rijuju, Kalon for Religion and Culture, Karma Gelek Yuthok and former director of the Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, Kapila Vatsyayan.
In his introductory remarks, Tibet House Director, Geshe Dorji Damdul paid tribute to the erstwhile Nalanda tradition that informs Tibetan Buddhism. He expressed the wish that His Holiness live long and that his vision shall be brought to reality.
Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju also attended the public lecture by His Holiness on ‘Meaning of life and secular ethics’.
Speaking on the above occasion, Kiren Rijiju said that it is very important occasion and he feels blessed in the presence of His Holiness Dalai Lama. He congratulated the Tibet House on completing 50 years and Men-Tsee-Khang for completing 100 years.
His Holiness 'Dalai Lama’s teachings are relevant for today’s situation, specially for the coming generation. His Holiness’ teachings are ancient, but relevant to time,' Rijiju said, adding that 'we should look for happiness from inside and not from outside.'
Director of the Men-tsee-khang, Tashi Tsering Phuri spoke of the institution’s slogan ‘healthy body, healthy mind’. Dr Lalit Kumar commended Tibet House’s launch of a Master’s course in Nalanda Buddhist Philosophy, an opportunity to study the Nalanda tradition in English at your own pace. Geshe Dorji Damdul presented His Holiness with a summary of the course material.
Tibet House is the Cultural Centre of His Holiness the Dalai Lama in New Delhi and Men-Tsee-Khang is Tibetan Medical and Astro Institute (TMAI), Dharamshala.
His Holiness Dalai Lama delivered a public lecture on – Meaning of life and secular ethics. He said that compassion should be the virtue of mankind. He said that love and compassion are helpful to the other person and should always be practised.
“I appreciate your enthusiasm and energy, which is what we need if we are to change the world. I want to thank Tibet House and the Men-tsee-khang for organizing this occasion.”
The Nobel Peace Laureate alluded to the prominent role education had had in Tibetans’ lives since they came into exile. His Holiness told his listeners that he regarded the Buddha as an ancient Indian scientist and that he regards himself as half Buddhist monk, half scientist.
“Sensory gratification alone does not put the mind at ease. To do that it is necessary to engage directly with the mind. This is why it is so important to understand the workings of the mind and emotions, as described in ancient Indian thought. Just as we need physical hygiene, we also need emotional hygiene if we are to be really well.”
His Holiness spoke of a reassessment of the contents of the 300 volumes of the Kangyur and Tengyur in terms of science, philosophy and religion. He stated that it was not necessary to be either Buddhist or religious minded to study the science and philosophy from an academic point of view. He cited nuclear physicist Raja Ramana’s lauding Nagarjuna’s thought as having pre-empted views now expressed in quantum physics.
Likewise, the Tibetan leader said, cognitive therapist Aaron Beck’s assessment that feelings of anger and attachment are 90% mental projection correspond to what Nagarjuna advised. He insisted that much of what the ‘Nalanda professors’ had to say continues to be of relevance to us today.
In answering questions from the audience His Holiness clarified the demarcation between violent and non-violent action as being in the motivation. He also touched on the important role of giving and taking, exchanging self and others in training the mind and achieving lasting happiness.