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"I believe that to meet the challenges of our times, human beings will have to develop a greater sense of universal responsibility. It is the foundation for world peace."

His Holiness the Dalai Lama speaks to KTSF Chinese program

October 18, 2010

Central Tibetan Administration (CTA)
October 16, 2010

His Holiness the Dalai Lama and panel members
holding conference on 'Scientific Explorations of
Compassion and Altruism' at Stanford university,
15 October 2010. Photo/Linda A. Cicero/Stanford
News Service His Holiness the Dalai Lama and
panel members holding conference on 'Scientific
Explorations of Compassion and Altruism' at
Stanford university, 15 October 2010. Photo/Linda
A. Cicero/Stanford News Service Palo Alto,
California: His Holiness the Dalai Lama began his
last day in Palo Alto with an interview with the
Chinese language service of KTSF, “an
independent, full-power station, reaching over
1.4 million Asian-Americans throughout 10 Bay
Area counties.” The interview was conducted by
Mr. Jaron Lin, host of the "Talk Tonight" program.

Questions ranged from Buddhist view on how the
universe came into being, the future of the Dalai
Lama institution as well as on the Tibetan issue.
In response to a question on Tibetan-Chinese
relation, His Holiness said: “Whether the Chinese
government admits or not, there is problem. That
is why the government has to station a large
number of security personnel and military force
in Tibet. There is tight control and censorship,
which means there is something wrong. So now this
problem is neither good for Tibetans or for the
People’s Republic of China as a whole. We have to
solve this problem, as well as the Xinjiang
problem. You have to deal with these problems. So
far, unfortunately those hard liners feel
difficult to face the reality. The reality is
there but they try to avoid it and try to hide
it. That is why they have censorship.

This kind of situation cannot remain for ever. As
Deng Xiaoping stated, there is the need for seeking truth from fact.

Firstly, fact must be genuine fact, not
artificial or official artificial fact. Also, in
today’s world when we are in information era, you cannot hide these things.”

His Holiness said among the top Chinese leaders,
former party secretary Hu Yaobang was very open
minded and had very realistic in his thinking. He
said that in 1980 Hu visited Lhasa and publicly
admitted their past mistake. His Holiness added,
“He was a really wonderful and realistic
communist leader. I always feel if Hu Yaobang had
remained or his policy was carried then today the
Tibetan problem and many other problems would have been solved.”

His Holiness said, “So now it seems the leaders
themselves are facing dilemma on how to solve the
problem. They have already carried lot of
suppressive policy and there is immense resentment from Tibetan people.”

His Holiness said he saw hopeful signs. He added,
“Wen Jiabao publicly praising the thinking of
late Hu Yaobang and his handling of these
problems. Also, Wen Jiabao publicly expressed
that People’s Republic of China now needs some
political liberalization. Economic liberalization
led by Deng Xiaoping really brought about big
change. Now that is 30 years ago and it is highly
necessary to carry out political liberalization.
So these are hopeful signs. In recent years and
particularly in recent months among Chinese
intellectuals and many sensible people voices
have increased for transparency, human rights,
religious freedom, free information and stopping
the practice of censorship. This kind of people’s
wish cannot be stopped. After all, the country
actually belongs to the people, not to one party
or individual leader. Finally people’s wish,
people’s voices makes a difference. Therefore,
basically I am optimistic. Things will change.”

He said, “We Tibetan are not anti Chinese. We
very much respect Chinese people. After 2008
crisis, I publicly stated that as far as
government is concerned my faith is becoming
thinner and thinner, but my faith towards Chinese
people has never shaken. The Chinese people are
cultured people basically, hardworking and realistic.”

“I want to say that the young Chinese brothers
and sisters must study what is reality and how to deal with that reality
realistically,” he added.

Asked what he wanted to convey to the viewers,
His Holiness said, “Basically, the relation
between Tibetan and Han people is thousand of
years old. Sometimes it has been very friendly
and good, and sometimes difficult. So now, at
this moment there is some difficulty. But because
of thousand of year of close relations as a
Tibetan naturally he had genuine sense of concern
about the well being of 1.3 billion of human
beings there. I always pray that one day they not
only material prosperity but freedom as freedom
provides mental peace and mental happiness.
Material development provides physical comfort.
Then billions of people’s life becomes
meaningful. That is my wish and my prayer.”

His Holiness participates in conference on
Scientific Explorations of Compassion and Altruism

Following this interview, His Holiness departed
to the Memorial Auditorium to participate in the
full day academic conference on “Scientific
Explorations of Compassion and Altruism.” This
conference brought together distinguished

researchers under the auspices of the Stanford
Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and
Education (CCARE) to examine issues such as, what
are the key evolutionary and neurobiological
underpinnings of compassion and altruism? What
compels us to take risks at a cost to act on
behalf of others? How does one potentiate such behavior?

The Conference focused on new findings in
psychology and the neurosciences, including the
emerging field of neuroeconomics. It was divided
into four sessions, two in the morning and two in the afternoon.

Before the first session began, Dr. Gary
Steinberg, Director of Stanford Institute for
Neuroinnovation and Translational

Neuroscience (SINTN), Chair, Department of
Neurosurgery, Bernard and Ronni Lacroute-William
Randolph Hearst Professor in Neurosurgery and
Neurosciences, made introductory remarks. He
welcomed the interaction of scientists with His
Holiness the Dalai Lama saying that although he
was not a Buddhist, he admired Buddhism’s
emphasis on reason and seeking empirical facts.

Dr. James R. Doty, Director of CCARE and Clinical
Professor of Neurosurgery, Stanford University,
spoke next and expressed his gratitude to His
Holiness the Dalai Lama for his encouragement.

The Conference Moderator, Dr. Arthur C. Zajonc,
Professor of Physics, Amherst College, first
invited His Holiness to make some remarks.

His Holiness gave a comparative history of
scientific development and his own life and
showed how it had impacted him. He said he was
born around the time when World War II was about
to begin. In the course of that War, the world
witnessed the use of nuclear bombs in Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

His Holiness said nuclear physics was one of the
great advances of science. He said scientific
development continued to impact people’s lives.
Even the September 11 attacks in the United
States witnessed the use of a technological
development of a civilian airplane being used as a weapon of destruction.

His Holiness concluded that it was clear that
scientific and technological development was no
guarantee for happiness and reiterated his call
for scientists to increase attention to the inner mind.

The first session was on “The Role of Compassion
in Education and Wider Societal Context” with Prof. Linda Darling
Hammond, Professor of Education, and Dr. Philip
Zimbardo, Professor of Psychology Emeritus, both
of Stanford University, as panelists.

It focused on the place of compassion, both in
individuals’ lives and in larger societal contexts, such as understanding
across peoples and cultures as well as the future
course of education. It examined how compassion
and altruism can be brought into social and
educational systems and what the benefits might
be. Dr. Hammond spoke about experiments in some
schools in Palo Alto where the students were
given education in compassion and how this has positively impacted them.

The Second session was on “Research and
Experiments on Compassion” with Dr. Karl
Deisseroth, Associate Professor of Bioengineering
and of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences,
Stanford University, Dr. Bill Harbaugh, Professor
of Economics, University of Oregon, and Dr. Brian
Knutson, Associate Professor of Psychology, Stanford University

This session saw the presentation of findings
from CCARE’s research on the neural, genetic and
behavioral mechanisms associated with compassion,
altruism and other pro-social emotions. It
explored the evolutionary origins of mammalian
nurturing as well as neuropsychological and neuroeconomic models of compassion.

The third session was also on “Research and
Experiments on Compassion” with the following
panelists. Dr. Phillipe Goldin, Research
Associate, Department of Psychology, Stanford
University; Dr. Erika Rosenberg, Consulting
Scientist, Center for Mind and Brain, University
of California, Davis; and Dr. Jeanne Tsai,
Associate Professor of Psychology, Stanford
University. Subjects raised included the
potential of altering the brain through altering of genes.

This session saw the presentation of CCARE
research projects on the effects of cultivating
compassion through affective training. It
examined how cultivating qualities of compassion
is possible and introduced a secular protocol for
Compassion Cultivation Training developed by Dr.
Thupten Jinpa, Adjunct Professor, Religious
Studies, McGill University, and Visiting Scholar
and Executive Committee, CCARE, Stanford University, for CCARE.

The fourth session was on “Exploring Scientific
Questions for Future Research on Compassion and
Altruism” with Dr. James R. Doty, Dr. Paul Ekman,
Professor of Psychology, Emeritus, University of
California, San Francisco. In this session the
panelists touched on some of the issues raised in
earlier panels. They talked about a proposed
standard of measuring compassion and the need for more discussions on this.

During his interventions in the course of these
sessions, His Holiness called for the need to understand that cultivating
compassion also had benefit for the self. He said
we need to dispel the misunderstanding that
compassion means sacrificing one’s own interest.

He also talked about efforts he was making in
encouraging the Tibetan community to look at many
of the issues that have been raised in the
conference. He informed the gathering that
currently a project is underway to bring out a
compendium of sciences in Tibetan that
incorporated both ancient Tibetan Buddhist
thoughts as well as modern scientific views. He
said this compendium would include areas found
within Buddhist scriptures so that people
interested in such issues (who may not be
Buddhists) do not have to the Buddhist texts to study them.

Dr. Arthur C. Zajonc gave his concluding
reflections. He talked about the new attention to
the inner mind by scientists as “a new marriage”
between science and spiritualism. He also talked
about the potential for an integrated education
in which external and internal development had
equal importance. He thanked His Holiness for
encouraging scientific research in this field and
recognized the role of Dr. Thupten Jinpa saying
this is a gift from Tibet to the United States and the world.

In his concluding remarks, Dr. James R. Doty said
that today there is a recognition that love and
compassion are no longer a luxury but a
necessity. He expressed his gratitude to His
Holiness for his inspiration that has also
impacted many people throughout the world.

The Stanford School of Medicine, Center for
Compassion and Altruism Research and Education,
and the Office for Religious Life have been the
host of His Holiness the Dalai Lama's visit to the University.

His Holiness departs Palo Alto for Atlanta on
October 16 morning for the next leg of his tour.
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