(TibetanReview.net, Sep24, 2015) – The Dalai Lama has said Sep 21 that he, the 14th, might be the last, although not ruling out the possibility that he may yet appoint a qualified lama as his successor before he goes. Speaking in an interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour while continuing his tour of the UK, he has said the Buddha’s teaching had survived for 2600 years without there being a recognised reincarnation of the Buddha to make the point that the continuance of the religion was not dependent on the existence of the Dalai Lama institution.
As far as Tibetan Buddhism is concerned, the 10,000 monks and nuns who are studying and practising today will be able to preserve it, he has added.
Asked what he would tell Mr Xi Jinping in case there was a meeting, as the latter was visiting the UK and US shortly, the Dalai Lama has replied that he would tell the Chinese President that Tibet though historically independent was no longer seeking it but only to “preserve our language, culture and Buddhist traditions” as a part of the People’s Republic of China. He has also said he would remind Mr Xi that last year in Paris and Delhi he had said Buddhism plays an important role in Chinese culture. “Buddhist values can be of help at a time when the injustice and corruption he seeks to contain are widespread,” he has added.
The Dalai Lama’s main agenda for the day was an Interfaith Meeting organized by the Buddhist Society at the UK’s House of Lords. Christians, Muslims, Buddhists and Hindus of various denominations and a Sikh attended the meeting.
The Dalai Lama has said interfaith meetings were opportunities to build and nurture friendship and trust among different religions and peoples especially in times of conflict such as the present.
The Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, has said he had spoken in the House of Lords about the need to encourage the Chinese authorities to acknowledge and respect the Dalai Lama as a spiritual leader in a spirit of tolerance and respect for people’s faith.
Archbishop Kevin McDonald has conveyed greetings to the Dalai Lama and members of the gathering from Cardinal Vincent Nichols, leader of the Roman Catholic Church in the United Kingdom.
Others who had spoken included Baroness Berridge, Chair of the All Party Group on International Religious Freedom, and the Bishop of Coventry, Christopher Cocksworth.
The meeting has expressed dismay at the way violence continued and a determination to work for dialogue.
Later in the afternoon, the Dalai Lama has spoken to an audience of more than 2000 at the Lyceum theatre. He was reported to have been welcomed on stage by his old friend Lord Richard Layard and the Director of Action for Happiness, Mark Williamson. The latter has explained that a new course of training called ‘Exploring What Matters’ was being launched that day, which was the World Peace Day.
After a conversation with Prof Layard on the topics of happiness and peace, the Dalai Lama, who is the patron of the Action for Happiness, has answered questions from the floor.