Incorporate secularism in education system: Dalai Lama

Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama on Friday critiqued the modern education system for not doing much about moral ethics.

PTI| Updated: Mar 20, 2015, 20:32 PM IST

New Delhi: Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama on Friday critiqued the modern education system for not doing much about moral ethics.

"The 21st century is dealing with problems of faith. Unfortunately, our education system today has no place for moral ethics. When the West is waking up to the idea of incorporating secularism in the education system; in India, where the concept has existed since the past 3,000 years, nothing is being done," he said.

The 80-year-old Nobel Laureate was addressing a gathering of high-school students, 'School Teaching Session with His Holiness', organised here by the Foundation for Universal Responsibility of His Holiness The Dalai Lama along with the Taj Mahal hotel.

The spiritual leader talked about "honesty, friendship and love" in his talk.

"We are at the mercy of others' care. While growing up, you should remember that entire humanity's future depends on each other.

"You should inculcate good friendships, devoid of any biases, because without a friend, you feel lonely from inside. Do not let the world colour your vision," he told hi rapt audience.

Dressed in his trademark yellow-maroon robe, the Buddhist leader asked students to choose reason over blind faith.

"I love science because it is based on experimentation and investigation. I have had many serious discussions with scientists in the past 30 years. That has only made me believe that science and religion can go together," he said.

The Dalai Lama also also touched upon evolving science

that was today "delving into subjective experiences".

"Even the scientists today agree to the importance of peace of mind. That is why we started having brain specialists in later 20th century," he said.

On being asked whether the institution of the Dalai Lama will cease with him, the 14th Dalai Lama said, "Like any other institution, it will also cease some day. To have a permanent institution of the Dalai Lama is not a necessity.

"But yes, if there is a next Lama and that too a woman, I want her to be attractive," he added with a hearty laugh.

The spiritual leader answered a volley of questions from his enthusiastic audience.

Asked about his views on homosexuality, he said, "It is considered sexual misconduct in Buddhism. But I feel that it is an individual choice. If you are sure and safe, you are entitled to practice your choice."

He was also asked how he could teach the lesson of peace to a set of hardened criminals like terrorists.

"Terrorism is a result of past mistakes and negligence. We should have concentrated on teaching inner peace and helpfulness. But we restricted all these ideals to temples or mosques. We wouldn't have seen this day if we would have acted in the past. Mere prayers do not lead to results, but actions do," he said.

Lastly, he spoke about China's claim to Tibet.

"If we consider someone as our enemy, that is self- destruction. Today's enemy can be tomorrow's friend. All of us have to live in this planet. I even see the Muslim fundamentalists as my brothers," he said.