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“Entering the Middle Way”

By Vasudha Bhatia  /  October 9, 2017;

His Holiness giving White Tara Long Life Empowerment
Photo: OHHDL

His Holiness the Dalai Lama conducted a four day long teaching at the main temple in Dharamshala, Tsuglagkhang, on the mornings of October 3 to 6.The teaching was based on Chandrakirti’s Entering the Middle Way, which, said His Holiness, is studied by all schools of Tibetan Buddhism, and had been organised at the request of the International Association of Tibetan Buddhist Dharma, Taiwan. 1,300 Buddhists from Taiwan attended, coming from 22 cultural organisations all associated with the Association.

Over 6,000 people gathered in the temple from 69 different countries, including India, Nepal, Korea, Japan, Russia, Vietnam, Israel, Spain, Germany, France, the United Kingdom and America. The teachings were translated live and available by radio, the languages included Chinese, English, Korean, Japanese, Vietnamese, Hindi, Thai, French and German.

In his introductory speech on the first day, His Holiness said, “While following any religion, including Buddhism, the practitioners should have a full understanding of the methods and concepts about that tradition”. He mentioned that he was deeply grieved over the tragic shooting the previous day in Las Vegas in which around 58 people were killed and others injured, and expressed his sympathies to everyone affected. He said that such things happen due to shortage of compassion and lack of respect for life.

Members of the audience welcoming His Holiness

His Holiness asked his followers to maintain emotional hygiene along with physical hygiene saying, “If you keep harbouring anger or jealousy towards others, it will be you who is at the losing end, because you will remain mentally disturbed unless you resolve it”. He also spoke about religious harmony, giving India as a“shining example” and saying, “India is a land of diverse cultures and religions. Despite isolated incidents, all major religious traditions of the world exist peacefully in India which is a matter of great pride”.

On the first morning of the teaching, lunch was provided for everyone in attendance: the Taiwanese members of the International Association of Tibetan Buddhist Dharma were offered lunch in the temple courtyard while members of the wider public were given food from the general kitchen.

On the final day, His Holiness began by performing preparatory rituals for the White Tara Long Life Empowerment before the start of the day’s teaching, and just prior to the conclusion he read aloud the transmission of the Prayer to the Twenty-One Taras at the request of a nun.

As the teaching ended, members of the Taiwanese group took the opportunity to have their photographs taken with His Holiness.

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