In his second Louisville appearance this week, the Dalai Lama emphasized the importance of religious tolerance and learning to an estimated crowd of 7,000.
The Tibetan spiritual leader’s discussion Monday at the KFC Yum Center centered around the Buddhist faith and the path to happiness and enlightenment.
“Human friendship is something very essential,” the Dalai Lama told the audience. “We need friends….Trust comes from affection. If you really care [about] others well being then there’s nothing to hide, transparent and you speak truthful, honestly….that creates trust,” he said.
He stressed the importance of affection—and said thatmaterial items, wealth and power don’t compare with that of good family and friends and may actually destroy such values.
(The audio below includes the first part of his two part talk Monday)
On Sunday, the Dalai Lama discussed compassion.
This time, he explained how religions are interconnected and said he believes people should stay true to their faiths, but should be open to learning about others.
“Once you learn more the value of other tradition, then any sensible person then feel, ‘Oh that religion [is] also wonderful. Then mutual respect come,” he said.
“Once mutual respect come there, then mutual learning also come[s]. That’s really very basis of genuine harmony in modern religious tradition. That, I think we need.”
At points the Dalai Lama used personal stories from his travels to connect with the audience and he joked that God must sometimes be confused when people fight wars in his name.
“May be confuse. This side also praying me. This side also praying me. They themselves are fighting, now my bless should go this side or should go this side? So therefore, this is really terrible in the name of religion, killing each other,” he said.
The Dalai Lama also emphasized the need to ensure non-believers have access to the same path to happiness.
“They won’t accept any religion, nobody can force that, and [it’s] difficult to argue. So therefore these people also want happy life, same emotion. So therefore we must find an approach to cover these people also. So [it] should be universally accepted method,” he said.
The Dalai Lama will be in Louisville until Tuesday, when he’ll speak to a group of public and private school students.