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Recession is chance to re-think values: Dalai Lama

July 31, 2009

(AFP) – July 28, 2009

WARSAW — The ongoing global economic crisis is an opportunity to
re-think values related to finance, Tibet's exiled spiritual leader the
Dalai Lama said Tuesday during a visit to Poland.

"Maybe this unfortunate crisis can be a lesson to start to think about
other values of human beings, not only just money," he told a
predominantly student audience at Warsaw University.

"What have we learned? In money matters we need truth, honesty --
transparency is very essential," he said.

"Of course my knowledge, experience in the financial field is zero. Of
course one, thing I know: money is important. Without money you can't
survive," he said, chuckling.

"Yes, of course, money is important, but of course there are other
values, happy family, happy community and more contented," he added.

He said the crisis was rooted in "greed and speculation" and a lack of
transparency in the financial world.

"One thing I think all those business people should learn is that all
their business work should be transparent and clean and honest," he added.

The Dalai Lama arrived in the Polish capital Warsaw on Monday for a
three-day visit during which he is to receive honorary citizenship of
the city.

He will also visit a museum dedicated to the World War II Warsaw
Uprising, a doomed 1944 insurrection by the Polish resistance against
the occupying Nazi Germans.

The 1989 Nobel Peace Prize laureate last visited Poland in December 2008
to mark 25 years since Polish anti-communist icon Lech Walesa likewise
received the prize as leader of the country's Solidarity freedom
movement that peacefully toppled communism here in 1989.

China was enraged by the Dalai Lama's meeting with French President
Nicolas Sarkozy -- then at the helm of the European Union -- during the
Tibetan's visit to honour Walesa.

Beijing argues the Dalai Lama wants full independence for Tibet, a claim
which he himself has called "totally baseless," insisting instead on an
autonomous status for his Himalayan homeland within China.

He has lived in exile in India since fleeing Tibet after a failed
uprising in 1959 against Chinese rule, nine years after Chinese troops
had invaded.
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