Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama, spiritual leader of the Tibetan people, awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989, a popular world leader and seen as the reincarnation of compassion. Who would not want to listen to a few words from him?
Grabbing an opportunity
To attend a teaching with the Dalai Lama was one of my hopes for my journey to Dharamsala. He is just a very special person. But he travels a lot, does not make public appearances so often and when I checked his schedule before I came to Dharamshala I noticed that there were no teachings planned here that were possible for me to attend. But suddenly I heard a word on the street that a new event had come up and that he would make a short teaching on the 16th of May. No time to loose, I decided to try to get a spot. In order to attend the event one need to register with the security office beforehand. He is a popular person and the day before his planned appearance I waited in line for four and a half hour to get my clearance.
In Dalai Lamas presence
At the day of the event there was also a bit of waiting. I wanted to have a reasonable good spot so I passed through security shortly after it opened in the morning, around two hours before the teaching was to start. Waiting is a good practice of patience and I also had some small talk with my fellow listeners. The fact that we were also served bread and tea (not bad considering we must have been a couple of thousand people there) also made time pass quicker. And then he was there! Smiling and waving as I have seen on TV before. He starts to look a bit old but has a very sharp mind and a great sense of humor. Seeing him in real life and listening to him talk was definitely an experience for life. I am really glad I got this opportunity.
“My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness.”
/14th Dalai Lama
Note: Camera was not allowed for visitors at the event and all photos in this post come from the official Dalai Lama webpage. Photos by Tenzin Phuntsog.