His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama. Photo: TPI

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Dharamshala, India – “The media should always be honest and fair, and remain unbiased in its news reporting,” said His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama on the 140th foundation anniversary of news outlet, The Tribune on February 2, 2021.

Being asked to speak on the anniversary, His Holiness firstly expressed his gratitude and talked about the sustainment of national identity. “I am glad to have this opportunity to share some of my thoughts with your readers. I am pleased to learn that the newspaper was established because its founder understood the importance of educating the Indian community and saw the role that education could play in sustaining a sense of national identity when India was under British rule,” he said.

He then talked about the role of the media in these scenarios, and said that the role it plays in societal development is immensely crucial, while also giving a humorous analogy about the field of work. “I have even jokingly said on occasion that people in the media should have long noses like elephants, so that they can smell, and then expose, both the good and the bad,” he stated.

His Holiness also praised the news outlet on its longevity. “The media should always be honest and fair, and remain unbiased in its news reporting. The fact that this newspaper has been in existence since 1881 is an indication that it is making a valuable contribution to society,” reminded the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet.

After talking about the media and its influence, he showed his admiration towards India and said that it has continued to maintain a certain degree of democratic stability since its Independence. He then also shared his thoughts on what the country as a whole could focus on in the future, and shed light on the revival of ancient Indian wisdom.

“It is wonderful that the country, despite many challenges, is growing at a rapid rate. There is, however, one area in which I would like, if I may, to offer some encouragement. That is in reviving interest in India’s ancient wisdom, especially in relation to such principles as ahimsa and karuna; non-violence and compassion. If we can develop such values, we can make a tremendous contribution not just to India but also to the entire world.”

“We Tibetans are profoundly grateful to India for giving us aid during our current crisis, and also for providing us with spiritual knowledge, knowledge that has substantially benefited our people over the course of centuries. I am convinced that the rich ancient Indian understanding of the workings of the mind and emotions will be of great relevance in today’s world,” affirmed the Tibetan spiritual leader.

His Holiness also touched upon the concept of morale, by laying focus on the principles people need to follow in order to attain true happiness, telling individuals to prioritize emotional hygiene, as much as physical hygiene.

“People need the qualities of non-violence and compassion if they are to live happily together. These principles not only make logical sense, but are also of immediate practical benefit, whether you are a religious person or not. I have no doubt that if people paid more attention to compassion and non-violence in their day-to-day lives, the world would be a better place. Just as many of us work to protect our physical hygiene, I believe we need to cultivate emotional hygiene. We must learn how to deal with anger, anxiety and fear and reduce them all. The key is learning how to cultivate peace of mind,” he explained.

He ended, talking about India again and expressing hope towards the fact that the country can take great benefit from its ancient knowledge, further expressing the same for the world. “I truly believe that India is the only country that can combine modern education with the ancient Indian understanding of the workings of the mind, and that the whole world urgently needs this. If we all work together, we can make a fresh contribution to the welfare of the entire planet,” addressed the Tibetan spiritual leader.