Dalai Lama Preached Peace in Central Park
From The World Journal
September 22, 2003

Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama prayed for those killed in Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks during his speech at Central Park on Sept. 21. He also emphasized war and violence could not resolve problems and called on people to build trust, make compromise and pursue a happy and peaceful life through non-violence, compassion and love.

The Dalai Lama’s speech at Central Park at noon yesterday drew tens of thousands of listeners. Among them were Tibetan civilians and lamas in traditional costumes, who had come from all over the world. There were also young students as well as parents with their children. When the Dalai Lama appeared and greeted the audience with his palms pressed with each other, he was given a prolonged standing ovation.

The Dalai Lama emphasized the importance of peace and compassion. “Peace is the expression of kindness,” he said. He pointed out the key to a happy and peaceful life lies in kindness and love, and that only compassion can help reduce hatred and suspicion. “But the problem is that people do not emphasize forgiveness or compassion,” he said.

He said it does not matter whether a person is religious, and that the most important is to have compassion. He acclaimed the way New Yorkers behaved during the blackout in April. “People helped each other out in streets. New Yorkers have become more compassionate, caring and spiritual minded,” he said.

The Dalai Lama called on people to resolve issues through non-violent means. “War is legalized violence,” he said. He pointed out man must reduce hatred and suspicion, build trust and care through compassion and love and, through peaceful means, prevent more violence and terror attacks from happening again. He called on people to respect each other’s interests and make compromise to pursue a happy and peaceful life.

The Dalai Lama also commented on Sept. 11 terror attacks. He suggested people respecting and mourning the victims, sympathizing their families and accepting the facts. He warned people against hatred and vengeance. He then completed his speech by reading aloud a Tibetan poet in a pray for the lost during the Sept. 11 attacks.

Mrs. Chen from Wisconsin arrived at New York on Sept. 17 to attend the Dalai Lama’s preaches. Having studied the Tibetan Buddhism for seven years, she said had learned how to get over worries and adversity. She said she also learned to be optimistic, treasure lives and understand the truth of sequential relations between the cause and the result. “I was even more moved by the Dalai Lama’s compassion after listening to his speech,” she said.

Miss Hu, who has been living in New York for more than 30 years, said passionately she felt relieved, peaceful and happy after listening to the speech. “The love and forgiveness the Dalai Lama mentioned is what we need the most,” she said.

Tibetan compatriot Lobsang Nylosang came with his family of three. They migrated to Canada fleeing political prosecution 31 years ago and drove to New York yesterday to attend the speech. “His words are always touching. He has taught us to have compassion and live with it,” he said. His families said they hoped more people would carry out the Dalai Lama’s conceptions, and that the issue of Tibet could be resolved peacefully. “We hope our compatriots back home will no longer suffer, and that we will return to our homeland as soon as possible,” they said.

This is the Dalai Lama’s fifth visit to the United States, which was arranged by movie star Richard Gere. This was his third tour to New York. He last made a speech at Central Park in 1999.

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Translated from Chinese by Shasha Dai

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