A bipartisan U.S Congressional delegation during their meeting with His Holiness the Dalai Lama at his residence in Dharamshala, HP, India on August 3, 2019. Photo: Tenzin Choejor

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Dharamshala, India — 'I think America is a strong supporter of Tibet' His Holiness the Dalai Lama said during his meeting with six members of the House Democracy Partnership, a bipartisan commission of the US House of Representatives, at his residence in Dharamsala, HP, India, August 3, 2019.

A six bipartisan Congressional delegation of U.S House of Democracy Partnership received a special audience with His Holiness the Dalai Lama at his residence Saturday afternoon. The delegation led by Congressman and Chair David Price and Vice-chair Vern Buchanan engaged in hour-long interaction and discussion with His Holiness the Dalai Lama followed by a luncheon reception for the delegation with His Holiness.

The meeting was attended by Dr Lobsang Sangay, President of the Tibetan government in-Exile and Pema Jungney, Speaker of the Tibetan Parliament in-Exile.

“I think America is a strong supporter of Tibet. Our hope also entirely and mainly depends on America’s support. Then, in 1973 I visited Europe and then in 1979 in America. So I felt strong support, not just for political reason, but for moral principles,” the spiritual leader of Tibet told The members of the bipartisan congressional delegation.

On the relationship between Tibet and the U.S., His Holiness said that “there were a number of people who know about Tibet and they support Tibet. They also have a very warm feeling toward Tibet. Since then America become the main supporter of Tibet and now today, members from both houses and parties, also US Ambassador to Delhi came here and you are most welcome.”

“This place is my home, around since after 1959, I have spent one year in Mussoorie and then came to Dharamshala. The Government of India has arranged all these things. So I have been living here for over sixty years. Therefore, I want to welcome you all to my home,” His Holiness added.

The US Congressman David Price raised His Holiness the Dalai Lama for his teachings all over the world. “Freedom for you to teach and relate to of-course the Tibetan community, But, to people all over the world and you have so much to offer and we should all value that freedom.”

David Price then handed over a letter from Nancy Pelosi is the Speaker of the House of Representatives. He said, “you have mentioned our Speaker Nancy Pelosi; I want to first to bring you greetings from her and to give a letter which just expressing her esteem.”

His Holiness responded as saying, “she visited China, meantime in Tibet.  After that, she helped your visit?” “Yes, after she has arranged our visit to Tibet,” David Price replied.

"One of my beliefs, source of inner strength and source of peace, I consider myself one of the human beings and all the seven billion human beings, mentally, emotionally and physically— we are the same. We all want a happy life,” said His Holiness the Dalai Lama, describing himself as a simple Buddhist monk.

“As I already mentioned basic human nature is more positive. So now, I have a critical view of the existing education system, which very much oriented about material values. We should include in education how to bring inner peace, without touching religious faith, but secular way,” His Holiness said, adding: “That is my commitment”.

“To think about these things and to be stimulated to think about what really motivates us and what we believe in that so I thank you for that and be happy to turn my friend and Co-chair HDP, Congressman Vern Buchanan of Florida,” David Price responded.

“Thank you, Your Holiness, Chairman put it very well. We are six members of the Congress; we want to quickly just add. We want to continue to build our friendship and our partnership is going forward. I would like to get your thoughts at some point what more we can do and I did want to touch on you mentioned about and you talked a lot of different things,” Congressman Vern Buchanan said.

“Its child welfare, it all starts there, in my mind, there’s a saying that goes: I went to boys and girls clubs. Children make up 25% of the population in the U.S. but a 100% of the future, so I appreciate you weighing in on all the other points that you made your inspirational and leadership, is incredible. I just can’t imagine anybody else on the planet that adds more to the conversation than what you do,” Buchanan added.

“So I can tell you when this came up as an opportunity to be with you and the Tibetan people in your presence. David and I thought about it for about 30 seconds, we really feel special to being in your presence to have this opportunity and know that we are going to continue to build friendship and like to get your thoughts when you can about how we can take it to another level,” he further added.

The bipartisan congressional delegation of House of Democracy Partnership consisting of L-R: Congressman Neal Dunn, Congressman Vern Buchanan (Co-chair, HDP),Congressman David Price (Chairman, HDP),Congressman John Rutherford, Congresswoman Susan Davis, Congressman Gerry Conolly, accompanied by the head of the Office of Tibet in Washington, DC, Ngodup Tsering, who in this capacity is the Representative of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to North America.

His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama is known throughout the world as a leading advocate for world peace and non-violence. His message is one of kindness and compassion to all sentient beings. Over the past 60 years, he has traveled around the world spreading a message of Peace and Universal Responsibility.

He also believes that the common aim of all religions, an aim that everyone must try to find, is to foster tolerance, altruism and love. He retired from politics in 2011. But, as one among six million Tibetans, His Holiness said he will continue to serve the cause of Tibet.

In 1959, His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama along with thousands of others escaped to India, where he was given political asylum. The spiritual leader has set up a government and rebuilt monasteries where masters pass on their teachings to young monks. Tibetans in exile have succeeded in gradually rebuilding their monasteries, preserving their culture, restructuring their society and keeping it alive, in spite of the extremely difficult circumstances.