Dalai Lama's theme: 'science of emotions'

By Jeff Diamant and Maura McDermott, The Mercury News, October 31, 2005

PISCATAWAY, N.J. (USA) -- Sharing the spiritual lessons that have become his calling card, the Dalai Lama drew the largest crowd for a non-athletic event in Rutgers University history last month with a wide-ranging speech on what he called the ``science of emotions.''

From a massive stage in the Rutgers Stadium, the spiritual leader of Tibetan Buddhism -- who speaks Friday at Stanford Memorial Church during a two-day visit to the university -- focused on inner peace and world peace and the connection between them.

With occasional help from a translator, the man regarded as the 14th incarnation of the Buddha of Compassion joked with the crowd of nearly 36,000 and answered questions on morality submitted earlier via e-mail.

At Stanford, tickets are already gone for the three public events involving the Dalai Lama, but the Memorial Church presentation (2:30-4:30 p.m. Friday) and the other programs will be broadcast live on the university station, KZSU-FM (90.1), and also Webcast via the Internet (check http://dalailama.stanford.edu for details, which were not available before publication).

The Rutgers turnout -- people began arriving hours before the speech -- exemplified the popularity of the 1989 Nobel Peace Prize winner among Christians, Hindus, Muslims and Jews. Little in the speech was specific to Buddhism, and the Dalai Lama urged listeners to think of his message not as religious but rather as ``a science of emotions, the science of mind.''

The chief themes in the talk, titled ``Peace, War and Reconciliation,'' were the importance of being compassionate and of controlling negative emotions, because doing so helps improve the world. Compassion, he said, drives peace, and true compassion ``is not just a mere feeling'' of pity but a sense of concern for others that stems from feelings of equality with them. That feeling, he said, contributes to an ``inner disarmament'' that can help people get along and eventually lead to world peace. Negative emotions such as anger and hatred, he said, can cloud one's vision and judgment.

The Dalai Lama, known as ``His Holiness'' to followers, made his points with stories of two Tibetan Buddhist monks. The first monk, he said, had spent nearly 20 years in a Chinese prison and when released to speak with the Dalai Lama in the 1980s, told the spiritual leader he had been in danger on a ``few occasions.'' Asked to elaborate, the monk responded that he had been in danger of losing compassion for the Chinese: ``He considered forgetting compassion as very serious and dangerous,'' the Dalai Lama said.

The second monk, by contrast, was so angry at Chinese rulers for their actions in Tibet that ``his face became red'' when talking about them. ``This kind of hatred brings more suffering to yourself,'' the Dalai Lama said.

It was a message that held special significance for people in the crowd such as Lara Brewche, who was paralyzed from the waist down in a car accident at age 16. ``I knew enough to let the anger go, and I made a wonderful life for myself,'' said Brewche, 34, who grew up Roman Catholic and embraced Buddhism a year ago.

Urging Americans to help narrow the worldwide gap between rich and poor, the Dalai Lama asked his young listeners to grow into adults willing to help people outside U.S. borders. ``You must look from wider perspective, not just talk America, America, America, like that.''

He also made the crowd laugh repeatedly. Overall, the Dalai Lama was a hit.

``You felt you were talking to a friend and listening to a friend,'' said Rajul Shah, 58. ``What he preached here wasn't religion; it was very spiritual.''

We Need Your Help to Train the
Buddhist AI Chat Bot
(Neural Operator for Responsible Buddhist Understanding)

For Malaysians and Singaporeans, please make your donation to the following account:

Account Name: Bodhi Vision
Account No:. 2122 00000 44661
Bank: RHB

The SWIFT/BIC code for RHB Bank Berhad is: RHBBMYKLXXX
Address: 11-15, Jalan SS 24/11, Taman Megah, 47301 Petaling Jaya, Selangor
Phone: 603-9206 8118

Note: Please indicate your name in the payment slip. Thank you.

Dear Friends in the Dharma,

We seek your generous support to help us train NORBU, the word's first Buddhist AI Chat Bot.

Here are some ways you can contribute to this noble cause:

One-time Donation or Loan: A single contribution, regardless of its size, will go a long way in helping us reach our goal and make the Buddhist LLM a beacon of wisdom for all.

How will your donation / loan be used? Download the NORBU White Paper for details.

For Malaysians and Singaporeans, please make your donation to the following account:

Account Name: Bodhi Vision
Account No:. 2122 00000 44661
Bank: RHB

The SWIFT/BIC code for RHB Bank Berhad is: RHBBMYKLXXX
Address: 11-15, Jalan SS 24/11, Taman Megah, 47301 Petaling Jaya, Selangor
Phone: 603-9206 8118

Note: Please indicate your purpose of payment (loan or donation) in the payment slip. Thank you.

Once payment is banked in, please send the payment slip via email to: editor@buddhistchannel.tv. Your donation/loan will be published and publicly acknowledged on the Buddhist Channel.

Spread the Word: Share this initiative with your friends, family and fellow Dharma enthusiasts. Join "Friends of Norbu" at: https://www.facebook.com/groups/norbuchatbot. Together, we can build a stronger community and create a positive impact on a global scale.

Volunteer: If you possess expertise in AI, natural language processing, Dharma knowledge in terms of Buddhist sutras in various languages or related fields, and wish to lend your skills, please contact us. Your knowledge and passion could be invaluable to our project's success.

Your support is part of a collective effort to preserve and disseminate the profound teachings of Buddhism. By contributing to the NORBU, you become a "virtual Bodhisattva" to make Buddhist wisdom more accessible to seekers worldwide.

Thank you for helping to make NORBU a wise and compassionate Buddhist Chatbot!

May you be blessed with inner peace and wisdom,

With deepest gratitude,

Kooi F. Lim
On behalf of The Buddhist Channel Team

Note: To date, we have received the following contributions for NORBU:
US$ 75 from Gary Gach (Loan)
US$ 50 from Chong Sim Keong
MYR 300 from Wilson Tee
MYR 500 from Lim Yan Pok
MYR 50 from Oon Yeoh
MYR 200 from Ooi Poh Tin
MYR 300 from Lai Swee Pin
MYR 100 from Ong Hooi Sian
MYR 1,000 from Fam Sin Nin
MYR 500 from Oh teik Bin
MYR 300 from Yeoh Ai Guat
MYR 300 from Yong Lily
MYR 50 from Bandar Utama Buddhist Society
MYR 1,000 from Chiam Swee Ann
MYR 1,000 from Lye Veei Chiew
MYR 1,000 from Por Yong Tong
MYR 80 from Lee Wai Yee
MYR 500 from Pek Chee Hen
MYR 300 from Hor Tuck Loon
MYR 1,000 from Wise Payments Malaysia Sdn Bhd
MYR 200 from Teo Yen Hua
MYR 500 from Ng Wee Keat
MYR 10,000 from Chang Quai Hung, Jackie (Loan)
MYR 10,000 from K. C. Lim & Agnes (Loan)
MYR 10,000 from Juin & Jooky Tan (Loan)
MYR 100 from Poh Boon Fong (on behalf of SXI Buddhist Students Society)
MYR 10,000 from Fam Shan-Shan (Loan)
MYR 10,000 from John Fam (Loan)
MYR 500 from Phang Cheng Kar
MYR 100 from Lee Suat Yee
MYR 500 from Teo Chwee Hoon (on behalf of Lai Siow Kee)
MYR 200 from Mak Yuen Chau

We express our deep gratitude for the support and generosity.

If you have any enquiries, please write to: editor@buddhistchannel.tv