More from and about
The Dalai Lama
(biographical info at bottom of page)


Genuine compassion is based on the recognition that others have the
right to happiness just like yourself, and therefore even your enemy is
a human being with the same wish for happiness as you, and the same
right to happiness as you.  A sense of concern developed on this basis
is what we call compassion; it extends to everyone, irrespective of
whether the person's attitude toward you is hostile or friendly.


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.

If one's life is simple, contentment has to come.  Simplicity is extremely important for happiness.  Having few desires, feeling satisfied with what you have, is very vital:  satisfaction with just enough food, clothing, and shelter to protect yourself from the elements.
Every day, think as you wake up, today I am fortunate to be alive, I have a precious human life, I am not going to waste it. I am going to use all my energies to develop myself, to expand my heart out to others; to achieve enlightenment for the benefit of all beings. I am going to have kind thoughts towards others, I am not going to get angry or think badly about others. I am going to benefit others as much as I can.
Human potential is the same for all.  Your feeling, "I am of no value", is wrong.  Absolutely wrong.  You are deceiving yourself.  We all have the power of thought -- so what are you lacking?  If you have willpower, then you can change anything.  It is usually said that you are your own master.

Genuine human friendship is on the basis of human affection, irrespective of your position.  Therefore, the more you show concern about the welfare and rights of others, the more you are a genuine friend.  The more you remain open and sincere, then ultimately more benefits will come to you.  If you forget or do not bother about others, then eventually you will lose your own benefit.


In the present circumstances, no one can afford to assume that
someone else will solve their problems.  Every individual has
a responsibility to help guide our global family in the right direction.
Good wishes are not sufficient; we must become actively engaged.


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We live very close together.  So, our prime purpose in this
life is to help others.  And if you can't help them,
at least don't hurt them.


Genuine compassion is based on the recognition that others
have the right to happiness just like yourself, and therefore
even your enemy is a human being with the same wish for
happiness as you, and the same right to happiness as you.
A sense of concern developed on this basis is what we call
compassion; it extends to everyone, irrespective of whether
the person's attitude toward you is hostile or friendly.


This is my simple religion.  There is no need for temples;
no need for complicated philosophy.  Our own brain, our
own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness.


His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, is the head of state and spiritual leader of the Tibetan people. He was born on 6 July 1935, to a farming family, at the hamlet of Taktser in north-eastern Tibet. At the age of two the child named Lhamo Dhondup was recognized as the incarnation of the 13th Dalai Lama, Thubten Gyatso.

Dalai Lama is a Mongolian title meaning "Ocean of Wisdom" and the Dalai Lamas are manifestations of the Bodhisattva of Compassion, Chenrezig. Bodhisattvas are enlightened beings who have postponed their own nirvana and chosen to take rebirth to serve humanity.

Education in Tibet

His Holiness began his monastic education at the age of six. At 23 he sat for his final examination in the Jokhang Temple, Lhasa, during the annual Monlam (prayer) Festival in 1959. He passed with honours and was awarded the Lharampa degree, the highest level geshe degree (a doctorate of Buddhist philosophy).

Leadership Responsibilities

In 1950 His Holiness the Dalai Lama was called upon to assume full political power after China's invasion of Tibet in 1949. In 1954 he went to Beijing for peace talks with Mao Zedong and other Chinese leaders, including Deng Xiaoping. But finally, in 1959, with the brutal suppression of the Tibetan national uprising in Lhasa by Chinese troops, the Dalai Lama was forced to escape into exile. Since then he has been living in Dharamsala, north India, the seat of the Tibetan Government-in-Exile.

Since the Chinese invasion, His Holiness has appealed to the United Nations on the question of Tibet. Three resolutions were adopted by the General Assembly, in 1959, 1961 and 1965.

Democratization Process

In 1963 His Holiness the Dalai Lama presented a draft democratic constitution for Tibet, following this with a number of reforms. However, in May 1990, the radical reforms called for by His Holiness saw the realization of a truly democratic government for the exile Tibetan community. The Tibetan Cabinet (Kashag), which till then had been appointed by him was dissolved along with the Tenth Assembly of Tibetan People's Deputies (Tibetan parliament in exile). In the same year, exile Tibetans on the Indian sub-continent and in more than 33 other countries elected 46 members to the expanded Eleventh Tibetan parliament on a 'One man one vote' basis. The parliament, in its turn, elected new members of the cabinet.

The new democratic constitution promulgated as a result of this reform was named "The Charter of Tibetans in Exile". The charter enshrines freedom of speech, belief, assembly and movement. It also provides detailed guidelines on the functioning of the Tibetan government with respect to those living in exile.

In 1992 His Holiness the Dalai Lama issued guidelines for the constitution of a future, free Tibet. In it, he announced that when Tibet becomes free the immediate task will be to set up an interim government whose first responsibility will be to elect a constitutional assembly to frame and adopt Tibet's democratic constitution. On that day His Holiness will transfer all his historical and political authority to the Interim President and live as a ordinary citizen. His Holiness also stated that Tibet comprising of the three traditional provinces U-Tsang, Amdo and Kham will be a federal and democracy.

Peace Initiatives

In 1987 His Holiness proposed the Five Point Peace Plan for Tibet as the first step towards a peaceful solution to the worsening situation in Tibet. He envisaged that Tibet will become a sanctuary a zone of peace at the heart of Asia where all sentient beings can exist in harmony and the environment can restore and thrive. China has so far failed to respond positively to the various peace proposals put forward by His Holiness.

The Five Point Peace Plan

In His address to members of the United States Congress on 21 September 1987, His Holiness proposed the following peace plan, which contains five basic components:
  1. Transformation of the whole of Tibet into a zone of peace
  2. Abandonment of China's population transfer policy which threatens the very existence of the Tibetan people
  3. Respect for the Tibetan people's fundamental human rights and democratic freedoms
  4. Restoration and protection of Tibet's natural environment and the abandonment of China's use of Tibet for the production of nuclear weapons and dumping of nuclear waste
  5. Commencement of earnest negotiations on the future status of Tibet and of relations between the Tibetan and Chinese people.

Revered By Tibetans

Every Tibetan has a deep and inexpressible connection with His Holiness the Dalai Lama. To the Tibetans, His Holiness symbolizes Tibet in its entirety: the beauty of the land, the purity of its rivers and lakes, the sanctity of its skies, the solidity of its mountains and the strength of its people.

Universal Recognition

His Holiness the Dalai Lama is a man of peace. In 1989 he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his non-violent struggle for the liberation of Tibet. He has consistently advocated policies of non-violence, even in the face of extreme aggression. He also became the first Nobel Laureate to be recognized for his concern for global environmental problems.

His Holiness has traveled to more than 52 countries and met with presidents, prime ministers and crowned rulers of major nations. He has held dialogues with the heads of different religions and many well-known scientists.

From 1959 to 1999 His Holiness has received over 57 honorary doctorates, awards, prizes, etc., in recognition of his message of peace, non-violence, inter-religious understanding, universal responsibility and compassion. His Holiness has also authored more than 50 books.

His Holiness describes himself as a "simple Buddhist monk". In his lectures and tours around the world, his simplicity and compassionate nature visibly touches everyone who meets him. His messages are of love, compassion and forgiveness. 

(adapted from Wikipedia)



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Yes, life can be mysterious and confusing--but there's much of life that's actually rather dependable and reliable.  Some principles apply to life in so many different contexts that they can truly be called universal--and learning what they are and how to approach them and use them can teach us some of the most important lessons that we've ever learned.
My doctorate is in Teaching and Learning.  I use it a lot when I teach at school, but I also do my best to apply what I've learned to the life I'm living, and to observe how others live their lives.  What makes them happy or unhappy, stressed or peaceful, selfish or generous, compassionate or arrogant?  In this book, I've done my best to pass on to you what I've learned from people in my life, writers whose works I've read, and stories that I've heard.  Perhaps these principles can be a positive part of your life, too!
Universal Principles of Living Life Fully.  Awareness of these principles can explain a lot and take much of the frustration out of the lives we lead.


Other people: 

Alan Watts
- Albert Einstein - Albert Schweitzer - Andy Rooney - Anne Frank
Anne Morrow Lindbergh - Anne Wilson Schaef - Annie Dillard - Anthony Robbins
Ari Kiev - Artur Rubenstein - Barbara Johnson - Benjamin Disraeli - Benjamin Franklin
Benjamin Hoff - Bernie Siegel - Bertrand Russell - Betty Eadie - Booker T. Washington
Charlotte Davis Kasl
- Cheryl Richardson - Cristina Feldman - C.S. Lewis - the Dalai Lama
Dale Carnegie - Deepak Chopra - Don Miguel Ruiz - Earl Nightingale - Elaine St. James
Eleanor Roosevelt - Elisabeth Kuebler-Ross - Ralph Waldo Emerson - Emmet Fox
Frederick Buechner
- George Bernard Shaw - George Santayana
George Washington Carver - Gerald Jampolsky - Harold Kushner
Harry Emerson Fosdick - Helen Keller - Henry David Thoreau - Henry James
Henry Van Dyke - Henry Wadsworth Longfellow - Henry Ward Beecher - Hugh Prather
Immanuel Kant
- Iyanla Vanzant - Jack Canfield - James Allen - Jennifer James - Jim Rohn
Joan Borysenko
- Joan Chittister - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe - John Izzo John Ruskin
Joni Eareckson Tada
- Joseph M. Marshall III - Julia Cameron - Kent Nerburn
Khalil Gibran Leo Buscaglia - Leonard Jacobson - Leslie Levine - Lucinda Bassett
Lydia Maria Child - Lynn Grabhorn - Marcus Aurelius - Marianne Williamson
Martin Luther King, Jr. - Maya Angelou - Melody Beattie - Michael Goddart - Mitch Albom
Mohandas Gandhi
- Morrie Schwartz - Mother Teresa - M. Scott Peck - Nathaniel Branden
Nikos Kazantzakis
- Norman Cousins - Norman Vincent Peale - Og Mandino - Oprah Winfrey
- Orison Swett Marden - Pau Casals - Peace Pilgrim - Phillips Brooks
Rabindranath Tagore
- Rachel Carson - Rachel Naomi Remen - Rainer Maria Rilke
Ralph Waldo Trine - Richard Bach - Richard Carlson - Robert Frost - Robert Fulghum
Robert Louis Stevenson
- Russell Baker - Sarah Ban Breathnach - Shakti Gawain
Soren Kierkegaard - Stephen Covey - Stephen C. Paul - Sue Patton Thoele - Susan L. Taylor
Sylvia Boorstein - Thich Nhat Hanh - Thomas Carlyle - Thomas Kinkade - Thomas Merton
Tom Walsh
- Victor Cherbuliez - Wayne Dyer - Wilferd A. Peterson - Willa Cather
William James - William Wordsworth - Zig Ziglar - Rhonda Byrne - Neale Donald Walsch
Carl Jung
- Desmond Tutu - Paulo Coelho - Jon Kabat-Zinn - Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Walt Whitman