Dalai Lama – Brothers and Sisters – Nobel Lecture

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The 14th Dalai Lama

Nobel Lecture

Dalai Lama Brothers and Sisters:-

Dalai Lama – Brothers and Sisters – Nobel Lecture:- It is a privilege and honor to be here today. I am overjoyed to see so many old friends who have traveled from all over the world and to meet so many new friends who I hope to see again in the future. 

At the point when I meet individuals in various regions of the planet, I’m constantly reminded that we are fundamentally similar: All of us are human beings. It’s possible that we wear different clothes, have different skin tones, or speak different languages. That appears to be the case. However, fundamentally, we are the same people. We are connected to each other by that. That is what enables us to comprehend one another and cultivate friendship and closeness.
After considering what I might say today, I decided to share some of my thoughts about the issues that we all face as human beings. We must learn to live in peace and harmony with one another and the natural world because we all share this tiny planet. 
That isn’t simply a fantasy, yet a need. We can no longer live in isolated communities and ignore what is happening outside of those communities because we are so dependent on one another in so many ways. We must share the good fortune that we enjoy. I am just another human being when I speak to you; as an ordinary monk. I hope you will try to put what I say into practice if you find it useful.
I also want to express my feelings to you today regarding the suffering and aspirations of the Tibetan people. For their bravery and unwavering determination over the past forty years of foreign occupation, they are deserving of the Nobel Prize. I believe it is my responsibility to speak out on behalf of my imprisoned fellow citizens as a free spokesperson.
I do not speak out of resentment or rage toward the people who are to blame for our people’s immense suffering and the devastation of our land, homes, and culture. They, too, are human beings who struggle to find contentment and deservingly receive our compassion. I’m here to tell you about the sad situation in my country right now and the hopes of my people because the truth is our only weapon in the fight for freedom.
It is very helpful in developing a sense of brotherhood and sisterhood to realize that we are all basically the same human beings who strive for happiness and avoid suffering; a warm sense of love and empathy for other people. In turn, this is necessary if we are to survive in this ever-diminishing world. Because if we each pursue only what we believe is in our own best interest without considering the needs of others, we run the risk of causing harm to both ourselves and others. 
Throughout this century, this fact has become very clear. We are aware, for instance, that waging a nuclear war right now would be suicide; or that we are destroying the very foundation of our survival by polluting the oceans or air for short-term gain. Therefore, as interdependent, we must cultivate what I refer to as a sense of universal responsibility.
We are truly a global family today. What occurs in one region of the planet might influence every one of us. This, obviously, isn’t just valid for the negative things that occur, however, is similarly substantial for the positive turns of events. Because of extraordinary modern communications technology, we are not only aware of what takes place elsewhere. 
Even things that happen far away have an impact on us directly. When children in Eastern Africa are starving, we feel sad. Essentially, we feel a feeling of bliss when a family is brought together following quite a while of division by the Berlin Wall. When a nuclear accident occurs thousands of miles away in another nation, our crops and livestock are contaminated, and our health and means of subsistence are at risk. When warring parties on other continents make way for peace, it improves our own safety.
But peace or war; the destruction of nature or its preservation; the upholding or encouraging of democratic freedoms and human rights; material prosperity or poverty; the absence of moral and otherworldly qualities or their reality and advancement; and the development or breakdown of human understanding are not distinct phenomena that can be analyzed and dealt with separately. As a matter of fact, they are particularly interrelated at all levels and should be drawn nearer with that comprehension.
If there is no war, peace is of little use to someone who is starving or freezing to death. A prisoner of conscience will still feel the agony of torture. It does not offer any consolation to those whose loved ones were killed in floods brought on by careless deforestation in a neighboring nation. Where human rights are upheld, people are fed, and nations and individuals are free, peace can only last. 
Genuine harmony with oneself and with our general surroundings must be accomplished through the advancement of mental harmony. Similar interrelationships exist between the other phenomena mentioned earlier. As an illustration, we see that, in the face of war, particularly nuclear war, a clean environment, wealth, or democracy are of little use, and that material advancement alone is not sufficient to guarantee human happiness.
Naturally, material advancement is crucial to human development. We made the mistake of paying far too little attention to economic and technological advancement in Tibet. At the same time, material growth without spiritual growth can also lead to serious issues. In some countries, people focus too much on external things and not enough on inner growth. 
In my opinion, both are significant and must be developed simultaneously to strike a good balance. Visitors from other countries always describe Tibetans as cheerful and happy people. This is a characteristic of our nation that is shaped by cultural and religious beliefs that emphasize the significance of achieving mental peace by cultivating love and kindness for all other living sentient beings, including humans and animals. 
The key is inner peace: Problems on the outside won’t affect your deep sense of tranquility if you have inner peace. You can handle situations calmly and rationally while maintaining your inner happiness in that state of mind. This is very significant. Without this inward harmony, regardless of how agreeable your life is really, you might in any case be stressed, upset, or despondent in light of conditions.
Therefore, it is evidently crucial to comprehend the connections between these and other phenomena and to approach and attempt to solve problems in a balanced manner that takes these various aspects into account. Naturally, it’s not easy. However, attempting to resolve one issue only serves to exacerbate others that are just as serious. 
Thus, we really have no other choice: We need to cultivate a sense of universal responsibility not only in terms of geography but also with regard to the various issues that our planet faces.
The people who have been chosen to do a particular job or the leaders of our nations are not the only ones who bear responsibility. Each of us is responsible for it individually. For instance, peace begins with each of us. We can be at peace with those around us when we have inner peace. Peace can be shared with neighboring communities and so on when our community is peaceful. 
Not only does it help others feel loved and cared for when we show kindness to them, but it also helps us cultivate inner happiness and peace. Additionally, we can actively cultivate feelings of love and kindness in a variety of ways. For some of us, engaging in religious practice is the most efficient approach. Non-religious practices may be the culprit for others. What is significant is that we each put forth a genuine attempt to get a sense of ownership of one another and the regular habitat we live in truth.
I’m exceptionally supported by the advancements which are occurring around us. The world’s political leaders are now beginning to take meaningful steps to address this issue after the young people of many nations, particularly in northern Europe, repeatedly demanded an end to the dangerous destruction of the environment that was being carried out in the name of economic development. 
The Brundtland Report, which was presented to the Secretary-General of the United Nations by the World Commission on the Environment and Development, was a significant step toward informing governments of the urgency of the problem. Serious endeavors to carry harmony to war-torn zones and to execute the right to the self-assurance of certain individuals have brought about the withdrawal of Soviet soldiers from Afghanistan and the foundation of free Namibia. 
Numerous places, from Manila in the Philippines to Berlin in East Germany, have seen dramatic transformations brought about by persistent nonviolent popular efforts. People all over the world live with renewed optimism as the Cold War seems to be coming to an end. Unfortunately, in June of last year, the brave efforts of the Chinese people to bring about a similar change in their country were brutally crushed. However, their efforts are also encouraging. 
The military could want an opportunity and the assurance of the Chinese nation to accomplish it. I find it especially admirable that these young people, who were taught that “power grows from the barrel of a gun,” decided to use nonviolence as their weapon instead.
These positive changes indicate that reason, bravery, perseverance, and the unquenchable desire for freedom can prevail in the end. Peace, reason, and freedom are gaining ground in the conflict between war, violence, and oppression on the one hand, and peace, reason, and freedom on the other. We Tibetans are encouraged by this realization and hope that one day we will also be free.
We Tibetans are also filled with hope when I, a humble monk from faraway Tibet, receive the Nobel Prize in Norway. It indicates that we have not been forgotten, even though we have not raised our plight through violence. It also indicates that the values we hold dear, such as our belief in the power of truth and respect for all forms of life, are now acknowledged and embraced. It is also a tribute to Mahatma Gandhi, my mentor, whose example inspires many of us. 
The award this year is a sign that this sense of shared responsibility is growing. The sincere concern that so many people in this part of the world have for the suffering of the Tibetan people touches me deeply. That is a source of hope for all oppressed people, not just Tibetans.
As you probably are aware, Tibet has, for quite some time, been under an unfamiliar occupation. Over a quarter of a million Chinese soldiers are currently stationed in Tibet. According to some estimates, the occupation army is twice as large. During this time, Tibetans have been denied their most fundamental common freedoms, including the right to life, development, discourse, and love, just to specify a couple. The Chinese invasion and occupation directly resulted in the deaths of more than one-sixth of the six million people who lived in Tibet. 
Indeed, even before the Social Unrest began, a significant number of Tibet’s cloisters, sanctuaries, and notable structures were obliterated. During the Cultural Revolution, almost everything that was left was destroyed. I don’t want to dwell on this well-documented point. 
The fact that the Tibetan people’s fundamental human rights are still being systematically violated despite the limited freedom granted to rebuild parts of some monasteries and other liberalization gestures after 1979 is important to remember. This dire circumstance has gotten even worse over the past few months.
Our nation would be nothing more than a shattered remnant of a people today if it weren’t for our community in exile, which was generously housed, supported, and assisted by organizations and individuals from all over the world. 
Our national identity, religion, and culture would have been effectively eradicated. In order to serve our people and safeguard the foundations of our civilization, we have established democratic institutions as well as schools and monasteries in exile. 
With this experience, we plan to carry out a full vote-based system in a future free Tibet. As a result, as we modernize our exile community, we also cherish and safeguard our own culture and identity and offer hope to millions of Tibetans.
The massive influx of Chinese settlers into Tibet is the most pressing issue at this time. Although a significant number of Chinese were relocated to the eastern parts of Tibet during the first decades of occupation, most of them to the Tibetan provinces of Amdo (Qinghai) and Kham (most of which have been annexed by neighboring Chinese provinces), the Chinese government has encouraged an unprecedented number of Chinese to migrate to all parts of Tibet since 1983, including central and western Tibet, which the People’s Republic of China refers to as the “Tibet Autonomous Region.” In their own country, Tibetans are rapidly becoming an insignificant minority. 
It is still possible to halt and reverse this development, which poses a threat to the Tibetan nation’s very survival as well as its culture and spiritual heritage. However, this must be done immediately, before it is too late.
The new pattern of dissent and brutal constraint, which began in Tibet in September of 1987 and finished in the burden of military regulation in the capital, Lhasa, in the Spring of this current year, was by and large a response to this huge Chinese convergence. 
Despite the severe punishment and inhumane treatment of Tibetans detained for expressing their grievances, information reaching us in exile indicates that protest marches and other peaceful forms of protest are continuing in Lhasa and a number of other locations in Tibet. 
It is not known how many Tibetans were killed by security forces during the March protest or in detention, but it is likely to be more than two hundred. Torture is common, and thousands have been detained or arrested, and imprisoned.
I proposed what is generally referred to as the Five-Point Peace Plan for the restoration of peace and human rights in Tibet in the context of this worsening situation and to prevent further bloodshed. In a speech I gave in Strasbourg last year, I talked more about the plan. The plan, in my opinion, provides a reasonable and attainable framework for negotiations with China. 
However, China’s leaders have resisted constructive responses up to this point. However, the brutal suppression of the Chinese democracy movement in June of this year reinforced my belief that any solution to the Tibetan issue will be fruitful only if it is backed by sufficient international guarantees.
The major and interrelated issues that I mentioned in the first part of this lecture are addressed in the Five-Point Peace Plan. It calls for the following: 
(1) the transformation of all of Tibet into an Ahimsa (nonviolence) zone, including the eastern provinces of Kham and Amdo; 
2) the Surrender of China’s populace move strategy; 
( 3) Respect for the democratic liberties and fundamental rights of the Tibetan people; 
4) Restoring Tibet’s natural environment and safeguarding it, and 
(5) The beginning of serious negotiations regarding Tibet’s future status and relations between Tibetans and the Chinese. In my Strasbourg speech, I proposed that Tibet become a democratic political entity with full self-government.
I would like to take this opportunity to talk about the Five-Point Peace Plan’s central concept, the Zone of Ahimsa, or peace sanctuary. It is, in my opinion, extremely significant not only for Tibet but also for Asia’s peace and stability.
My aspiration is for the entire Tibetan plateau to become a safe haven where people and nature can coexist peacefully and in harmony. It would be a location away from the stresses and tensions of most of the rest of the world where people from all over the world could go to find the true meaning of peace within themselves. Tibet could without a doubt turn into an imaginative community for the advancement and improvement of harmony.
Tibet is perfectly suited to serve as a sanctuary of peace in the strategic center of Asia due to its height, size (the same as the European Community), unique history, and profound spiritual heritage. It would likewise be with regards to Tibet’s verifiable job as a serene Buddhist country and cushion district isolating the Asian mainland’s perfect and frequently rival powers.
Mr. Gorbachev, the President of the Soviet Union, proposed demilitarizing the borders between China and the Soviet Union and turning them into “a frontier of peace and good-neighborliness” in order to ease tensions in Asia. The Nepal government had before suggested that the Himalayan nation of Nepal, verging on Tibet, ought to turn into a zone of harmony, albeit that proposition did exclude neutralization of the country.
The establishment of peace zones to separate the continent’s largest powers from potential adversaries is essential for Asia’s peace and stability. The proposal by President Gorbachev, which also included a complete withdrawal of Soviet troops from Mongolia, would help to lessen tension and reduce the likelihood of a conflict between China and the Soviet Union. China and India, the two nations with the most people in the world, must undoubtedly be separated by a genuine peace zone.
India and Nepal would also be able to withdraw troops and military installations from the Himalayan regions bordering Tibet in order to establish the Zone of Ahimsa. This would be necessary for the establishment of the Zone of Ahimsa. In order to accomplish this, international agreements would be required. It would be beneficial to all Asian nations, particularly China and India, as it would reduce the financial burden of maintaining large troop concentrations in remote areas and improve their security.
The first strategic area to be demilitarized would not be Tibet. The Egyptian territory that divides Israel and Egypt, the Sinai Peninsula, has been demilitarized for some time. Naturally, Costa Rica is the best illustration of a nation that is completely demilitarized. Additionally, Tibet would not be the first region to be designated a biosphere or nature preserve. 
The world has seen the creation of numerous parks. Natural “peace parks” have been established in a few strategically important locations. The Si A Paz project on the Costa Rica-Nicaragua border and the La Amistad Park on the Costa Rica-Panama border are two examples.
When I went to Costa Rica earlier this year, I saw how a country can grow into a stable democracy committed to peace and the preservation of the natural environment without using an army. This affirmed my belief that my future vision of Tibet is a real plan and not just a dream.
Permit me to conclude with a private note of appreciation to all of you and our friends who are not present today. We are all deeply moved by your concern and support for the Tibetan people’s plight, which continues to inspire us to fight for freedom and justice: not by using weapons, but rather with the potent weapons of truth and determination. 
When I express my gratitude to you and ask you not to forget Tibet at this crucial point in the history of our nation, I am aware that I am speaking on behalf of all the people of Tibet. We also hope to play a role in the creation of a world that is more peaceful, kind, and beautiful. The goal of a free Tibet in the future will be to assist those in need all over the world, preserve nature, and foster peace. 
I believe that we Tibetans are able to make a significant, if insignificant, contribution by combining spiritual qualities with a pragmatic and realistic outlook. I hope and pray for this.
Let me conclude by sharing a brief prayer that inspires me greatly and motivates me:
I will continue to work to alleviate the suffering of the world for as long as space and living things exist.
Thank you.
 

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