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"On my part, I remain committed to the process of dialogue. It is my firm belief that dialogue and a willingness to look with honesty and clarity at the reality of Tibet can lead us to a viable solution."

Dalai Lama's Buddha-like charm attracts celebrities

December 15, 2008

B K Upmanyu
Merinews - New Delhi,India
14 December 2008, Sunday
IAN MAFALAET, from Cape Town of South Africa is the office bearer of South African Friend of Tibet (SAFT) says. When asked by merinews why he wishes to go to Dharamsala, he said: “I have been in India for four months now. I would like to go to Dharamsala once because the Dalai Lama stays there and he looks like the kind of man who can actually bring world peace. He is also quite a charmer, from what I have gathered from all the articles I have read about him and quite witty too! But besides that, I have also heard that Dharamsala is a beautiful place! Some of my friends from Israel praised it a lot.”
Dharamsala, a northern Indian town attracts people from all over the world – many of whom are prominent personalities in their own fields. People come here with the hope of getting a glimpse of the Dalai Lama and then return to their countries and tell their friends, that they met the Tibetan spiritual leader.
And what will he do if he does happen to have a glimpse of the Lama? “Wow! I really cannot imagine that because I doubt if I am so lucky. But if I do, well, I will try and get his attention and shake hands with him. Maybe even bow to him,” he replies with a glint in his eyes.
Frank de Brun is from France and has recently landed on the Indian soil. Here to do a project, de Brun plans to travel the country before he settles down for work. Ask him if he plans to visit Dharamsala, and he answers knowingly, “I have heard about this place. Isn’t it where the Buddha stays?” On being told that that’s right, he continues, “Before I came here, me and my girlfriend were discussing where all I should go and this was one of the places that we listed.” Ask him what is it that brings him to Dharamsala and he replies, “I want to see where the Dalai Lama stays. Besides that, I am sure Dharamsala will also be about a lot of Tibetan culture and Prayer flags and prayer wheels.” That it is, this charming valley has statuesque and colourful monasteries.
While meeting the Dalai Lama is the attraction of some, for the others, this place is a spiritual haven, energising people against the difficulties and stresses of life. Ryan Rodriguez, of Spain candidly added, “I went to Dharamsala, primarily for the beauty of the place and because it is a famous hill-spot. But now, when I look back, I realise I did not know anything about the place.
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