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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."

"I am not seeking independence," reconfirms His Holiness

November 6, 2009

By Sherab Woeser
Phayul
November 3, 2009

Matsuyama, November 3 -- On his arrival at the
provincial capital of Matsuyama early morning
today, His Holiness the Dalai Lama interacted
with the local media at Funaya Hotel for over an hour.

"I am not demanding independence for Tibet. I am
only seeking genuine autonomy as enshrined in the
constitution of People’s Republic of China," said
the exiled Tibetan leader in response to a
question. Expressing his hope in the Chinese
people, His Holiness said that the number of
articles and commentaries, critical of China’s
policies on Tibet in the past one year by Chinese
scholars and intellectuals were encouraging signs.

The Chinese Government accuses the Dalai Lama of
being a ‘splitist’ and violently suppressed last
year’s anti-government protests that spread all across the Tibetan plateau.

The Nobel Peace Laureate on his first visit to
the largest city of Japan’s Shikoku Island said
that he felt fortunate at being able to make
pilgrimage to the holy temples in Japan and
appreciated the ‘beautiful natural scenery’.

"There were many people at the temples yesterday
when I offered prayers. They looked happy, I am also happy," said His Holiness.

Responding to a question, the exiled Tibetan
leader said that the last five decades in exile
has proved as an opportunity to preserve the
Tibetan cultural heritage, which remains in a
‘more pristine form in exile than in Tibet’.

"At present, there is a healthy community of over
1,60,000 Tibetans in exile and a new younger
generation, equipped with basic modern education
is emerging to take responsibilities," said His
Holiness. "Personally, I met a lot of people in
the last 50 years and learned a lot from them. It
has been a very rewarding experience," added the exiled Tibetan leader.

Stressing that the world today is giving ‘too
much importance’ on the ‘secondary aspects of
faith, nationality and social background,’ His
Holiness said, "Wherever I go, I always feel I am
meeting one of my own. All human beings are part
of the same human family and our happiness depends on each other’s well-being."

Compassion brings the will to help others

In the afternoon, His Holiness the Dalai Lama
gave a public talk at the Ehime Budokan stadium
on ‘The ways of leading a happy life’.

A grand reception was accorded to the exiled
Tibetan leader with traditional Buddhist prayers
and live performances by Tenzin Dhondup, a
Tibetan artiste living in Japan and his partner Yuka Kawabe.

"When you have compassion, your basic mental
state becomes strong and stable. Just like a
strong immune system which fights away disease,
with a stable mind you can confidently face
problems and dangers," said His Holiness to a capacity crowd of 5,300 people.

The Nobel Peace laureate stressed on the need for
compassion in developing a ‘sense of global
responsibility and a wholistic point of view’ to
confront the challenges of war and conflict.

"The entire world is a part of ‘we’.
Economically, environmentally we are
interdependent. Looking only after the interest
of yourself, your family and your nation creates
problems," said the 74 years old Tibetan leader.

His Holiness encouraged the audience to cultivate
‘infinite compassion’ through practice and
advocated new means of fostering moral ethics by adopting ‘secular means’.

"These days people spend lots of money on
cosmetics. Put some effort in bringing inner
beauty. There is no expenditure in making your
inner beautiful," advised the exiled Tibetan leader.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama is scheduled to visit
Japan’s southern-most island of Okinawa, tomorrow.
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