By Tenzin Sangmo
His Holiness the Dalai Lama with PM Narendra Modi. file image courtesy - dalailama80.org
DHARAMSHALA, September 17: Wishing the Indian Prime Minister Modi on his 69th birthday, the 84-year-old Tibetan spiritual leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama said he considers himself a messenger of India and that he always commend it for its remarkable and deeply rooted religious pluralism.
“India stands as an example of harmony and stability. The peaceful conduct of elections, both at national and state levels, is a further testament to that tradition,” he added.
After wishing long and healthy life for the prime minister, he said, “As a long-time guest of India, and as someone who cares deeply about this country, I congratulate you on the growing confidence you have brought about. India's success not only benefits the people of India but also greatly contributes to the development of the world as a whole.”
His Holiness, a steady advocate of reviving ancient Indian knowledge system, especially Nalanda tradition of Buddhism, said he is much encouraged by the growing interest young people across India are showing in ancient Indian knowledge “which shines like the sun in the East.”
“I am convinced that the age-old Indian traditions of non-violent conduct—‘ahimsa’, backed by a compassionate motivation—‘karuna’, are not only relevant but are also necessary in today’s world.”
He said these positive qualities, along with a thorough understanding of the workings of our minds and emotions, arose out of the traditional Indian meditative practices for developing tranquility—‘shamatha’, and insight—‘vipashyana’.
“I believe that the way the Nalanda tradition presented these qualities in terms of logic and reason means they can be readily combined with modern education for the wider benefit of humanity.”
In conclusion, he expressed deep gratitude to the government and people of India for providing Tibetans warm and generous hospitality.
“For us Tibetans living in exile, India is not only our spiritual refuge but for more than sixty years has also been our physical home.”