Dalai Lama, born Tenzin Gyatso

Dalai Lama, born Tenzin Gyatso
1935

Tibetan Buddhist Leader, Awarded Nobel Peace Prize, Author, 14th and current Dalai Lama, head monks of the Gelugpa lineage of Tibetan Buddhism

Author Quotes

To all people, religious and nonbelieving, I make this appeal. Always embrace the common humanity that lies at the heart of us all. Always affirm the oneness of our human family.... Let not your differences from the views of others come in the way of the wish for their peace, happiness, and well-being.

True change is within; leave the outside as it is.

We are born and reborn countless number of times, and it is possible that each being has been our parent at one time or another. Therefore, it is likely that all beings in this universe have familial connections.

We must follow nonviolent principle so that later we can live happily.

What we do and think in our own lives, then, becomes of extreme importance as it effects everything we're connected to.

When you are discontent, you always want more, more, more. Your desire can never be satisfied. But when you practice contentment, you can say to yourself, 'Oh yes -- I already have everything that I really need.

Whether you believe in God or not does not matter so much, whether you believe in Buddha or not does not matter so much; as a Buddhist, whether you believe in reincarnation or not does not matter so much. You must lead a good life. And a good life does not mean just good food, good clothes, good shelter. These are not sufficient. A good motivation is what is needed: compassion, without dogmatism, without complicated philosophy; just understanding that others are human brothers and sisters and respecting their rights and human dignity.

Your friend, your enemy, your neutral all are equal. Genuine compassion is unbiased.

Someone else's action should not determine your response.

The foundation of the Buddha's teachings lies in compassion, and the reason for practicing the teachings is to wipe out the persistence of ego, the number one enemy of compassion.

The rationale for universal compassion is based on the same principle of spiritual democracy. It is the recognition of the fact that every living being has an equal right to and desire for happiness. The true acceptance of the principle of democracy requires that we think and act in terms of the common good. Compassion and universal responsibility require a commitment to personal sacrifice and the neglect of egotistical desires.

The very purpose of our life is to seek happiness.

There is only one important point you must keep in your mind and let it be your guide. No matter what people call you, you are just who you are. Keep to this truth. You must ask yourself how is it you want to live your life. We live and we die, this is the truth that we can only face alone. No one can help us, not even the Buddha. So consider carefully, what prevents you from living the way you want to live your life?

To be aware of a single shortcoming within oneself is more useful than to be aware of a thousand in somebody else. Rather than speaking badly about people and in ways that will produce friction and unrest in their lives, we should practice a purer perception of them, and when we speak of others, speak of their good qualities.

True compassion is not just an emotional response but a firm commitment founded on reason.

We are but visitors on this planet. We are here for ninety or one hundred years at the very most. During that period, we must try to do something good, something useful with our lives. If you contribute to other people's happiness, you will find the true goal, the true meaning of life.

We must improve the relationship between China and Tibet as well as between Tibetans in and outside Tibet. With truth and equality as our foundation, we must try to develop friendship between Tibetans and Chinese through better understanding in the future. The time has come to apply our common wisdom in a spirit of tolerance and broadmindedness to achieve genuine happiness for the Tibetan people with a sense of urgency.

When approaching a technique like the Buddhist training of the mind, we must understand and appreciate the complexity of the task we are facing. Buddhist scriptures mention eighty-four thousand types of negative and destructive thoughts, which have eighty-four thousand corresponding approaches or antidotes. It is important not to have the unrealistic expectation that somehow, somewhere, we will find a single magic key that will help us eradicate all of these negativities. We need to apply many different methods over a long period of time in order to bring lasting results. Therefore, we need great determination and patience. It is wrong to expect that once you start Dharma practice, you'll become enlightened within a short period of time, perhaps in one week. This is unrealistic.

When you lose, do not lose the learning effect.

Whether you call it Buddhism or another religion, self-discipline, that's important. Self-discipline with awareness of consequences.

Your sadness, your anger will not solve the problem. More sadness, more frustration only brings more suffering for yourself... No matter how tragic the situation, we should not lose hope.

Sometimes one creates a dynamic impression by saying something, and sometimes one creates as significant an impression by remaining silent.

The fundamental philosophical principle of Buddhism is that all our suffering comes about as a result of an undisciplined mind, and this untamed mind itself comes about because of ignorance and negative emotions. For the Buddhist practitioner then, regardless of whether he or she follows the approach of the Fundamental Vehicle, Mahayana or Vajrayana, negative emotions are always the true enemy, a factor that has to be overcome and eliminated. And it is only by applying methods for training the mind that these negative emotions can be dispelled and eliminated. This is why in Buddhist writings and teachings we find such an extensive explanation of the mind and its different processes and functions. Since these negative emotions are states of mind, the method or technique for overcoming them must be developed from within. There is no alternative. They cannot be removed by some external technique, like a surgical operation.

The real test of compassion is not what we say in abstract discussions but how we conduct ourselves in daily life.

The very purpose of religion is to control yourself, not to criticize others. Rather, we must criticize ourselves. How much am I doing about my anger? About my attachment, about my hatred, about my pride, my jealousy? These are the things which we must check in daily life.

Author Picture
First Name
Dalai Lama, born Tenzin Gyatso
Birth Date
1935
Bio

Tibetan Buddhist Leader, Awarded Nobel Peace Prize, Author, 14th and current Dalai Lama, head monks of the Gelugpa lineage of Tibetan Buddhism