Today is the eighty-first birthday of the fourteenth Dalai Lama, the pope-like figure to many of my fellow Buddhists. I have always admired his equanimity and compassionate demeanor while he has lost his country, home, loved ones, and everything while the Chinese station troops in his native Tibet, drain its resources, set up missiles, overwhelm with Chinese immigrants, and impose abortions and sterilizations on its women-in contrast to Westerners living relatively comfortab...le lives fighting each other on-line, and demanding safe spaces and trigger warnings whenever they are presented with views they disagree with when they are college students expected to take part in intellectual discourse, but judge based on a person's number of followers on social media. I think I will forever admire this man as a model to Buddhist practitioners everywhere long after he is gone from this earth, happy that, after that time, he will (according to Tibetan Buddhist belief) be reborn as the next Dalai Lama from a series of reincarnations going back to Tibetan Buddhist saint Chenrizig. Namaste.
|Photo from United Nation's for a Free Tibet (UK)'s Facebook page|