WISDOM FOR SENIORS FROM THE DALAI LAMA

Oct 24th, 2011 | By Sharon Shaw Elrod MSW EdD | Category: Lifestyle, Health & Fitness

The Dalai Lama, Universal Symbol of Peace

The Dalai Lama posted a message on his website recently that deserves to be shared around the world.  He is the universal symbol of peace in our world today, and his teachings and writings reflect his ability to bring differing ideologies together at the Peace Table.

This is what he said recently:

“It is time to develop a big ‘US’, rather than the old ‘us and them’ that lets us to (SIC) exploit and bully others on a personal level, and on an international level to wage war. The East must see the West as part of ‘US’ and the North must come to feel that the South is part of ‘US’. We should include the entire world in our concern, wishing all humanity well. If we can do that there will be no room for hatred, thinking of others as enemies. And we will achieve this through education, not through prayer.”  (Dalai Lama 10/14/2011)

The Dalai Lama’s emphasis on education cannot be overstated. That is not to say we should stop praying for peace and unity of the world’s family.  Many seniors know the power of prayer.  However, he is saying the human family needs to learn about and understand, through education, the forces that bring us all to the Peace Table with a desire to create daily lives based on the common universality we all share.

Education is the Safeguard of Liberty

Edward Everett said, “Education is a better safeguard of liberty than a standing army.”  Everett’s statement (from the 1800s, by the way) is a reminder that learning, separating fact from fiction, challenging and questioning others’ opinions (as opposed to facts that are proven and documented), engaging in productive discourse about differences moves US further down the road of universal peace than armies on the battlefield trying to out-shoot each other.

Those who choose to live without challenging their belief systems are in danger of remaining on the wrong track socially, personally and spiritually. Just because someone believes it or posts an opinion on a blog does not make the statement/belief true.  Opinions must be separated from facts that are documented.  Research must be scientifically conducted so observations and conclusions can be tested over and over and over again.  Sitting comfortably entrenched on a belief system may feel good, but ultimately makes no contribution to US coming together around the world.

So, Seniors, educate yourselves.  Separate fact from fiction from opinion.  When you read a blog, realize it is an opinion.  When you read a ‘fact’, find the documentation. When you hear, “I believe…”, honor the belief without making it a fact, a universal truth that has been documented.  Keep your mind open to learning something new every day.  Doesn’t mean what you learn is true, but it does help you understand where it came from and why someone else might believe it. Always search for the common ground that contributes to US around the world.



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