Discovering the Profound in Simplicity

The Vancouver Peace Summit has received a lot of press over the last few days and there have been a variety of viewpoints as to the impact of the conference. Personally, the summit left me feeling inspired.

I believe there are many versions of inspiration. There is the kind of inspiration that hits you hard, and I do not think that The Vancouver Peace Summit provoked that kind of inspiration. True to the spirit of Tibetan Buddhism and the Dalai Lama himself, the summit provided a more subtle version of inspiration.

 In my opinion the Dalai Lama is not an intense speaker. Rather, it is his simple message and soft delivery that makes him an influential figure. It is simplicity that makes him profound.

In the West we are constantly looking for a ‘fast fix’. We want instant gratification and the Dalai Lama is not a figure that provides this.

As he sat in the crowded Orpheum Theatre with his bare feet crossed in his lap there was no "put on" with him. Instead of uttering a carefully rehearsed statement his answers were straight and to the point.

If he did not know the answer or did not want to comment his reply was a simple "I don’t know," followed by a joyful giggle.

For this I respect him. We are constantly bombarded with carefully crafted statements, and it felt like a breath of fresh air to witness the humble nature the Dalai Lama conveyed.

Earlier in the conference the Dalai Lama was criticized for saying that technology is aiding in diverting people away from compassion. When I first heard this I thought he was being a little old fashioned in his approach. However, as I watched the lady seated in front of me type away on her Blackberry I wondered, does he have a point?

In this fast paced world where one wants immediate information, people are increasingly caught up in technology. There were world class individuals speaking, yet this woman could not tear herself away from the ubiquitous Blackberry?

I’m not criticizing. I too have a Blackberry and have been know to check it at numerous intervals through the day. But as I watched this woman, I could not help but wonder if she cannot turn off the Blackberry for the Dalai Lama then for whom?!

I did not go in to the summit expecting a quick fix, but I did learn something profound – that there is insight through simplicity.

The Vancouver Peace Summit had the goal of opening up a dialogue to influence change within the world. I believe that the summit succeeded in pointing out that change is possible and that it starts with the individual.

So put down that Blackberry, or at least use it to look up organizations of change, and really take a look at how you can make a difference.

The Vancouver Peace Summit has received a lot of press over the last few days and there have been a variety of viewpoints as to the impact of the conference. Personally, the summit left me feeling inspired.

I believe there are many versions of inspiration. There is the kind of inspiration that hits you hard, and I do not think that The Vancouver Peace Summit provoked that kind of inspiration. True to the spirit of Tibetan Buddhism and the Dalai Lama himself, the summit provided a more subtle version of inspiration.

 In my opinion the Dalai Lama is not an intense speaker. Rather, it is his simple message and soft delivery that makes him an influential figure. It is simplicity that makes him profound.

In the West we are constantly looking for a ‘fast fix’. We want instant gratification and the Dalai Lama is not a figure that provides this.

As he sat in the crowded Orpheum Theatre with his bare feet crossed in his lap there was no "put on" with him. Instead of uttering a carefully rehearsed statement his answers were straight and to the point.

If he did not know the answer or did not want to comment his reply was a simple "I don’t know," followed by a joyful giggle.

For this I respect him. We are constantly bombarded with carefully crafted statements, and it felt like a breath of fresh air to witness the humble nature the Dalai Lama conveyed.

Earlier in the conference the Dalai Lama was criticized for saying that technology is aiding in diverting people away from compassion. When I first heard this I thought he was being a little old fashioned in his approach. However, as I watched the lady seated in front of me type away on her Blackberry I wondered, does he have a point?

In this fast paced world where one wants immediate information, people are increasingly caught up in technology. There were world class individuals speaking, yet this woman could not tear herself away from the ubiquitous Blackberry?

I’m not criticizing. I too have a Blackberry and have been know to check it at numerous intervals through the day. But as I watched this woman, I could not help but wonder if she cannot turn off the Blackberry for the Dalai Lama then for whom?!

I did not go in to the summit expecting a quick fix, but I did learn something profound – that there is insight through simplicity.

The Vancouver Peace Summit had the goal of opening up a dialogue to influence change within the world. I believe that the summit succeeded in pointing out that change is possible and that it starts with the individual.

So put down that Blackberry, or at least use it to look up organizations of change, and really take a look at how you can make a difference.

The Vancouver Peace Summit has received a lot of press over the last few days and there have been a variety of viewpoints as to the impact of the conference. Personally, the summit left me feeling inspired.

I believe there are many versions of inspiration. There is the kind of inspiration that hits you hard, and I do not think that The Vancouver Peace Summit provoked that kind of inspiration. True to the spirit of Tibetan Buddhism and the Dalai Lama himself, the summit provided a more subtle version of inspiration.

 In my opinion the Dalai Lama is not an intense speaker. Rather, it is his simple message and soft delivery that makes him an influential figure. It is simplicity that makes him profound.

In the West we are constantly looking for a ‘fast fix’. We want instant gratification and the Dalai Lama is not a figure that provides this.

As he sat in the crowded Orpheum Theatre with his bare feet crossed in his lap there was no "put on" with him. Instead of uttering a carefully rehearsed statement his answers were straight and to the point.

If he did not know the answer or did not want to comment his reply was a simple "I don’t know," followed by a joyful giggle.

For this I respect him. We are constantly bombarded with carefully crafted statements, and it felt like a breath of fresh air to witness the humble nature the Dalai Lama conveyed.

Earlier in the conference the Dalai Lama was criticized for saying that technology is aiding in diverting people away from compassion. When I first heard this I thought he was being a little old fashioned in his approach. However, as I watched the lady seated in front of me type away on her Blackberry I wondered, does he have a point?

In this fast paced world where one wants immediate information, people are increasingly caught up in technology. There were world class individuals speaking, yet this woman could not tear herself away from the ubiquitous Blackberry?

I’m not criticizing. I too have a Blackberry and have been know to check it at numerous intervals through the day. But as I watched this woman, I could not help but wonder if she cannot turn off the Blackberry for the Dalai Lama then for whom?!

I did not go in to the summit expecting a quick fix, but I did learn something profound – that there is insight through simplicity.

The Vancouver Peace Summit had the goal of opening up a dialogue to influence change within the world. I believe that the summit succeeded in pointing out that change is possible and that it starts with the individual.

So put down that Blackberry, or at least use it to look up organizations of change, and really take a look at how you can make a difference.

- by Lara Howsam

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