Lines of cars were backed up along Sheridan Avenue. Traffic in the area reflected more than your typical commute to work during April —end of school year or not. People were scattered outside of campus selling merchandise that proclaimed “Free Tibet.” IDs were checked. Conversations about peace and petitions for peace were plentiful.
I didn’t have the chance to be there in person, but all you had to do was walk around campus and you got the picture. The live broadcast was heard via our own WLUW FM 88.7 and I enjoyed listening to the Dalai Lama’s comments. Our students even had the chance to get in on the action with some thought provoking questions at the end of his remarks. His answers were thorough and insightful.
What did I take away?
First, His Holiness commented that the ultimate source of happiness does not come from money, big cars, fame, power, etc. Peace of mind and joyfulness comes from an inner peace and self-confidence. He talked about how we all come from different religious traditions and philosophies, but we all have the same goals in life: to find meaning in life and celebrate a level of joyfulness and human dignity.
I also enjoyed his discussion on ethics. The Dalai Lama proposed that ethics is not a faith based discipline, because if it were, ethics would not be universal. Regardless of background or faith, he said that individuals ultimately have an inner voice, an inner self discipline that guides what one should or should not do.
Nicole Caddo, a senior anthropology major, asked about what advice He would give to a student who wants to act as an advocate for peace? He distinctly noted that peace starts with oneself, one’s family, and one’s friends. But most importantly, peace doesn’t happen through prayer or meditation, but rather through actions and efforts to educate others. To illustrate, the Dalai Lama commented about people releasing pigeons as a sign of peace. While releasing a pigeon might be a nice thing to do, he stated “a pigeon never brought peace.”
Thank you to our special guest, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, for joining us at Loyola and letting us all take a very much needed ‘time out.’