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Dalai Lama hears delegates on their dialogue on Buddhist canons

His Holiness the Dalai Lama addressing the gathering of delegates to the Second Dialogue on Vinaya during their meeting in New Delhi, India on July 1, 2018. (Photo courtesy: Jeremy Russell/OHHDL)
His Holiness the Dalai Lama addressing the gathering of delegates to the Second Dialogue on Vinaya during their meeting in New Delhi, India on July 1, 2018. (Photo courtesy: Jeremy Russell/OHHDL)

(TibetanReview.net, Jul03, 2018) – Tibet’s exiled spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, on Jul 1 morning met with delegates who had participated in a Second Dialogue on Vinaya, the Buddhist rules of discipline, in New Delhi. He had taken part in the first dialogue held in Mar 2015, also in New Delhi. The dialogue is a confederation of Buddhist masters from Sri Lanka, Burma, Thai, Vietnam, Taiwan, Indian and Tibetan Buddhist Traditions.

A senior Elder belonging to the Thai Forest Monk’s tradition, had expressed his approval of the spirit of the meeting but regretted that since the dialogue was being held in a hotel it was inappropriate for him, as a Forest Monk, to attend it. Nevertheless, he encouraged the other delegates by quoting what the Buddha had told his chief disciple Ananda, that after his passing away, the Vinaya would be the disciples’ guide. As long as the Vinaya prevailed, the Buddha’s teachings would survive, he had pointed out.

That was part of one of the reports from the gathering. Other reports made it clear that in the discussions that took place in the dialogue, the delegates had recognised that although the various Vinaya traditions may vary in the numbers of specific precepts, they shared the seven fundamental divisions of the Vinaya.

Proposals were stated to have been made for holding further such dialogues.

In his remarks, the Dalai Lama, among other things, acknowledged the fundamental importance of the teachings of the Four Noble Truths and the Thirty-seven Factors of Enlightenment, as preserved in the Pali Tradition. He has also noted that the writings of great masters such as Nagarjuna and Aryadeva, who based their insights on the second Turning of the Wheel of Dharma at Rajgir, were also very useful for sharpening the mind.

Representatives from Burma, Taiwan and India were stated to have presented gifts to the Dalai Lama, who in turn, reciprocated with gifts of statues of the Buddha to the Elders who were seated with him.

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