(TibetanReview.net, May18’19) – The Dalai Lama on May 17 expressed optimism that he will live to be at least 110 during a ceremony of long-life offering made to him in the Tsuglakhang before a gathering of some 7,500 devotees. He said this was not a wishful thinking but that it also required that he got enough rest and leisure.
Noting that at 84 he was now as old as the longevity of the First Dalai Lama, the Gyalwa Gendun Drub, he said he was still able to be of practical benefit to this world to a fair amount of measure and therefore looked forward to living for another 10-15 years.
In this connection he said that although one should not rely all that much on dreams, he did have a dream which, along with other factors, had buoyed his confidence about his longevity. He said: “Once I had a dream that I was swimming, even though I can’t swim, and Palden Lhamo was riding on my back. She remarked, ‘There’s no doubt you’ll live till you’re 110 years old’.”
He also spoke of previous dreams as well as prophesies which suggested that he would live to be 113. He said it was therefore not just some empty hope on the basis of which he was remarking about his expectations about his longevity.
He also felt that his own prayers as well as prayers made for him by his devotees would have a positive effect on his life and referred to his recent recovery from an incident of chest infection.
The Dalai Lama made it clear, however, that – as also advised by many – he needed good enough rest and leisure to be able to live longer. “As I told people in Ladakh, what would you prefer: that you keep asking me to come here and there, or that I live long?” he said with a laugh.
The Dalai Lama earlier began his address by thanking “the people from the Three Provinces, representatives of our spiritual traditions and protector deities oath-bound at the time of King Trisong Detsen” for making the Long-Life Offering.
Present in the front rows during the ceremony were top representatives of Tibet’s religious traditions: Menri Lopon Trinley Nyima Rinpoché from the Bön tradition; Jangtsé Chöjé Gosok Rinpoché, Ganden Tri Rinpoché Jetsun Lobsang Tenzin, and Sharpa Chöjé Lobsang Tenzin from the Gelug tradition; Ratna Vajra Rinpoché, the Sakya Trizin; Situ Rinpoché from the Karma Kagyu tradition; and Ringu Tulku from the Nyingma tradition.
The ceremony was conducted by monks from Namgyal, Gyutö and Kirti Monasteries.
Sikyong Lobsang Sangay and the Sakya Trizin made the mandala offering.