SALUGARA,1 APRIL: ‘Dalai’ is a Mongol word meaning ocean. The highest Lama is supposed to be as vast and deep as ocean. The institution was introduced in Tibet after the Gelug-pa sect struck roots in the snowy land in the 14th century. It has been under attack since 1950, but the aura that is associated with it has remained undimmed in course of the vicissitudes of history. That the reverential awe-the hallmark of the institution- has remained alive came into evidence when the 14th of the Dalai Lama linage visited Kalachakra temple at Salugara near Siliguri last week. The institution has remained an icon of world peace and inter-religious harmony and the present incumbent’s struggle and sacrifice to keep the flame alive seems to have added grandeur to it.
“The Dalai Lama is a pulsating part of world history. He embodies peace and fraternity. The philosophy that the institution espouses would grow more and more relevant as the world is moving towards a living unity. He visited Europe and United Kingdom several times. But I missed. Today I am lucky to have a glimpse of him and also to listen to his sermons that enlighten and give succor to the deeper soul, helping us to survive the whips of fate, the anguish and defeat- the daily portions of our mundane life,” said Ms Joana Breslstaff from the UK last Wednesday.
Mr Benjamin Witcombe, also from the UK, said the Dalai Lama has transcended his role as the supreme leader of a particular religious sect. “To me, he is above what we might call religious sectarianism. He stands for an expansive universalism. The unrest and strife that have been going on in the name of religious identities pale into insignificance in his vivacious presence. His message is futuristic as we are heading, albeit a bit stumblingly, towards the luminous consummation-oneness of the world and of humanity,” Mr Witcombe said.