Piers Morgan interviews His Holiness the Dalai Lama for CNN’s Piers Morgan Tonight originally broadcast on April 25, 2012. (www.dalailama.com)
Deva Troy is Renaissance Woman; singer song-writer, interfaith minister, hypnotherapist and the ‘new mother’ of a recently birthed CD entitled Light of Seven Mornings. She as an articulate spokeswoman for engaging in a Vivid Life and and beckoning others to join her in it as well.
How do you live your Vivid Life?
By being myself as wholeheartedly as I can muster in the moment with each experience life brings me. Obviously creating and writing songs that move and inspire me and others is high on the Bliss List as well. When I see and feel people getting the essence of a song they are hearing from me, I get pretty blessed out myself! Writing Sacred Ceremonies gets me pretty blessed out too…
How long has music been a part of your life?
Music runs thru my ancestral veins. My siblings and I were influenced by my Mother’s love of music and each of us were born with some musical abilities. My sister and I started singing Beatles harmonies in our teens and I was a song leader in my youth group in High School. I was also Religious Services Chairperson in my youth group and was in charge of writing services for the holidays and services. That was my earliest interest in blending ceremony with moving music and I am sure this connection influenced me in my 30’s to become an Ordained Interfaith Minister with The New Seminary. It was as natural as breathing for me. Those early experiences writing ceremonies and singing also informs my tendency to write inspirational music where I am often calling out to Spirit in my lyrics in some way. I was in Concert Choir in High School and started teaching myself guitar at 14 years old.
My mother’s side of the family was very musical. My maternal grandmother, whom I never met, was a concert pianist in Czechoslovakia before the war. Many years ago I learned that there were a few musicologists in my family tree and my mother always had the Metropolitan Opera on in the back round on Saturdays when I grew up. She sang in the temple choir and played piano by ear and was never afraid to get behind the piano, find the chords to any popular song and lead a room full of people in a song together. I taught music to kids at my synagogue growing up and in my job at summer day camps when I was a Counselor too. Music has always been my favorite language!
Please tell me about The Muse:
The Muse shows up in different ways for me. I often feel the Muse tapping me on the right shoulder, don’t know why since I am left handed, but I am fairly ambidextrous! It often starts with a phrase, a chorus, a song title. This is my first clue that there is a “download” coming soon. Sometimes it feels urgent and I sit down or pull out my recorder. Sometimes I just record the idea and it surfaces later. It’s funny, I often feel the Muse (or whatever it is) behind my right shoulder when I am in a Transformational Healing session with a client. Then I will hear ideas or phrases that often concur with what my client is feeling, or needing help with. The source of this “Guidance” is a true mystery to me but I think the creative force is there whenever one turns off the critical faculty and opens to the right brain flow of ideas and expression.
Sometimes the flow of lyrical ideas, phrases or music is a direct response to my needing to process an emotional event I have just been thru or witnessed in another that I later see other people will be able to relate to.
I do have the sense that there is a “pool of creative ideas, solutions, answers to problems and more that exists as consciousness around our planet.” When we are tuned in we get to “catch” some pretty cool stuff! In that sense I often feel like songs do “write me.” But there are times where the opposite is true too.
What is the origin of “Light of Seven Mornings”?
The title song “Light of Seven Mornings” comes from the song of the same name and is a line in the poem that I put to music. The poem is not my creation but comes from a 13th century Spanish poem that speaks about the “Shekinah”, the feminine presence of G-d in Judaism. I heard this poem many years ago at a High Holy Day service and its beauty moved me to tears. I asked the rabbi afterwards who wrote it and when I learned its origin I told her that I was going to put the poem to music. It was one of the first songs I wrote.
The name of the album comes from the line in the song that goes “ Take care of your soul my friend she is turquoise, agate and jasper, her light is like the light of the sun, like the light of seven mornings in one, like the light of seven mornings.”
The album name ended up coming to my friend and lead guitarist on the cd, J.B. Kline, whose studio “Riverdog” I recorded the album in. Nearing the end of the recording sessions I was beginning to get nervous about the name of the CD. My producer, Kevin Joy kept reassuring me that the name would show up at the right time and in the right way. In one of the last sessions as we were nearing completion, Jeff came into the studio and blithely announced “I have the name of your CD!” I said “What!” He said “Yes! I dreamed it this morning, then I forgot it and when I was in the shower, it popped back in again!” Thank goodness for warm water! He said it’s “Light of Seven Mornings!” and I said “Yup, that’s it! so you never know when and to whom the muse will strike!
“Hands of Light” began it’s genesis in my psyche the night a dear friend was passing and our community of friends were taking turns staying with him. I have been called to sing it often at memorial services which I am also I asked to do with “Light of Seven Mornings.” As a matter of fact, several years ago I sang at a family funeral and as my husband and I were leaving the parking lot in our car, two women ran up to the car and asked me “Do you have a CD of those songs you wrote? We never hear songs like that anymore and we miss hearing music like that!” It was the first time my world called out to me to record my songs and put them out there. It took a while to get there but I am thrilled to have finally gotten a dozen of them recorded.
“Summer time” is a new song I wrote last summer about how we love those summertime days and wish they’d never end. It’s a sentiment I know I feel especially as the winter winds begin to blow and we are driven indoors to stay warm.
“Gentle Sister” is a song I wrote about a woman friend I had who suddenly found herself going thru major surgery and her resulting healing journey. She was an inspiration to me and I felt others would be inspired by those in their lives who go thru an illness and recover from it stronger than before.
“Help Me Stay Humble” is a song I wrote as a chant for myself and then rewrote the lyrics before the last presidential election in the U.S. I had read an article speaking about how the writer had observed that presidents all start out looking healthy and bright and over their terms become faded, grey and devoid of life. It struck me so I rewrote the song as if Barak Obama was calling out to G-d for help in doing his job and staying connected to himself, his family and G-d. G-d certainly knows he needs a lot of help…
When I wrote my song “My Father Said” I was feeling strong feelings I needed to put someplace and I wanted my Dad to know that even though we haven’t always agreed on things I appreciated how solid he was for me in my life all of these years. It turned out to be a song that wrote me but not without great feeling as the lyrics and then music flowed in. I had to sing that song about thirty times alone before I could sing it in public so I wouldn’t break down. Now I can do it, but I didn’t sing it at my CD Release party because my sister was there and I knew if I looked at her while I sang it, my composure would vanish and I’d probably have “lost it.” “My Father Said” was based on one of my Dad’s favorite sayings I heard as a kid, which I later learned was a common saying in the 60’s and 70’s, “Where there’s a will, there is a way.” I added “You can do anything if you put your mind to it, my father said” which was my Dad’s real message to his children.
“The Meaning of Life” I wrote for a friend of my community, the Peaceweavers who passed away in the early 90’s. I needed to put together a memorial service for Ken and this song came to me to share. I don’t mean to be presumptuous writing a song with this title. It’s not that I have figured life out, or anything like that. But I have learned that these words: “The meaning of life, at the core, is to love unconditionally more, to accept all the lessons as the gifts and the blessings that make this life worth living for”
seems to be the core of why we are here and what we do during our time on earth.
“Raging Hormones” is my humorous song on the CD and I am finding that women of a certain age and the people who love them are getting a big kick out of it. It speaks to my journey of dealing with “the change” and all of its little and not so little implications.
“Hold Me Mother Earth” is one of my oldest songs on the album and is still a big hit in the “Peaceweaver Parade.” It is sung a lot with a big Native American drum at the Peaceweaver Retreat Center in upstate New York. It is an earth oriented song with a Native American energy that also honors the qualities of the four directions which is part of Native American cosmology. It is a letting go song in that it calls out to the “mother energy” to help us to let go of whatever we are holding onto that no longer serves us.
The “Women Honoring Song” has a Native American title and came to me as a result of witnessing how the Lakota people traditionally honor women because they are a matrilineal society. It made me wonder what our American culture would be like if we also respected and honored women similarly. This song honors the human feminine in our lives which gives and teach us so much.
“We Are the Ones” is my most recent response to the deep frustration and outcry from people of all ages, religions and socioeconomic groups that we are witnessing around the world. This song asks us to look within to put prejudices and self righteousness behind us and realize that what we have in common is our earth, our desire for basic freedoms, health, happiness, love and peace and the ability to make enough money to raise our families in a good way. The song calls out to us all to awaken to the fact that it’s us, “we are the ones we’ve been praying for” to create real change.
Finally “What if Peace Broke Out” I always dedicate to Grandpa Harry Blue Thunder who was the chief of the Ring Thunder Clan on the Rosebud reservation in Mission, South Dakota. Grandpa called us (the Peaceweaver community that traveled out to Rosebud for eight consecutive years in the 1990’s to do service and offer healing work) his “grandchildren” Harry had a vision that one day when he picked up his morning paper he would open it and the headlines would proclaim “Peace breaks out all over the world!” When I heard that I knew I would have to write a song about such a vision becoming reality and “What if Peace Broke Out” was channeled through soon thereafter. The line in this song that speaks to many is “I know its not easy to be the change that we seek to be happening everywhere, these are conscious choices to only raise our voices when we stand together in love and care.” We are much greater together than as the sum of our parts than we are when standing singularly alone. Even the word alone when cut down the middle implies we are “al-one!” I pray that this song becomes a Peace Anthem for our time and envision it taking off on You Tube as the perfect Holiday song to play and sing during our winter holy-days since we seem to be more focused on peace on earth at this time of year.
I know that you have long been part of a wonderful group of folks called The Peaceweavers. Please describe them and their purpose.
The Peaceweavers are an intentional community I was a co-founder of in 1990. We originally came together around the time of the Persian Gulf Crisis and rented a beautiful home in the woods we called the Roundhouse in Lambertville, New Jersey. We lived together as community there, offered workshops, talking stick circles, sweat lodges and healing work.
We attracted other like minded souls who were oriented towards peace, consciousness and personal and planetary healing. I was fortunate to be one of several sourcing energies of our community in the 90’s. We began having meetings to look for a permanent home and when land in upstate New York became available to us a handful of our core founders moved to the Finger Lakes region of New York and the Peaceweaver “Thunder Mountain” Retreat Center in Bath was born. The crew at Thunder Mt. offers ongoing Peace Retreats, Fasting and Cleansing Retreats, Silent Meditation Retreats, Natural Building Colloquims. Teen Coming of Age Ceremonies, Kid’s Peace Camp and much more. www.peaceweavers.com
Our community has always been involved with music of all kinds but singing and chanting especially around a large native American drum as a community is something we learned from our elders when we went out on caravans in the 90’s to the Rosebud Reservation. We learned the magic and healing power of sacred songs while there and also from a dear spirit brother of ours named Eryn Paul Sackmann, who taught us many sacred songs he had learned from Hawk Little John, his teacher. Eryn was my dearest friend for many years and sang harmony with me for several years until he moved to Texas. After he moved I took a musical hiatus because it didn’t feel right to sing without him and when he suddenly passed away in 2005 I found it hard again to sing knowing that we would not sing together again in this life. When I had my CD Release Party I could feel him smiling down on me delighted that I had finally recorded my music and would have a musical legacy to share that would be my “progeny” since I did not have children this life.
What impact would you like your music to have?
I would like my music to accomplish the following things for my listeners. To engage their minds to new possibilities, to open their hearts to feel compassion, love, and the whole breadth of human feelings we are capable of and to soothe and feed their souls with stories and messages about life, peace, hope and the possible universal humans we can be.
I would like my songs to be emotional connectors for people to persons, places and things that deeply matter to them.
I see my music being performed in spiritual, inspirational milieu’s such as “New Thought Interfaith churches”, Yoga , Holistic and Transformational Centers, Peace, Healing, Consciousness Raising and Earth Supportive Events and Festivals that celebrate the Possible Humans we can be. Basically anywhere that people come together to be moved, empowered and awakened to the power of love, connection and truth is where I want to share my songs.
I feel called to be a voice for the people whose voices are being unheard. Songs like “We Are The Ones”, “What If Peace Broke Out” and others not on my first CD that still need to be recorded like “The Path to Peace” a song about the message of peace the Dalai Lama brought to listeners at Rutgers College a few years ago, “G-d’s Love” a song that speaks to the universality of G-d’s love for all humans regardless of race, religion or creed and “The Wake Up Chant” which is the perfect “Occupy wherever” chant.
I will also continue to write and sing songs for special ceremonies I am called to facilitate as an Interfaith Minister of the New Seminary. That has been with me as I mentioned at the beginning of the interview since being in a youth group in my young teens and is still very strong in me to write and perform meaningful ceremonies that celebrate life’s passages with story, song and prayer.
Recently I became aware that my music has a soothing quality that is deeply stress reducing to some listeners so I guess my other impact will be to be a “chill pill” for those needing deep relaxation and soothing. That’s perfect too because of how it fits into my Transformational Troy Method Healing and Hypnotherapy work with clients. There is great healing power in a voice. I am here to heal this life so if that can be accomplished thru listening to a song or doing a healing session, either way I am “on purpose” and happy to serve the greater whole always and in “all ways!”
I’m sometimes amazed and embarrassed by how critical I can be both of other people and of myself. Even though I both teach and practice the power of appreciation (as well as acceptance, compassion, and more) when I find myself feeling scared, threatened, or insecure (which happens more often than I’d like it to), I notice that I can be quite judgmental. Sadly, as I’ve learned throughout my life, being critical and judgmental never works, feels good, or leads me to what I truly want in my relationships and in my life. Can you relate to this?
I’ve recently been challenged by a few situations and relationships that have triggered an intense critical response – both towards myself and some of the people around me. As I’ve been noticing this, working through it, and looking for alternative ways to respond, I’m reminded of something I heard Louise Hay say on a number of years ago. She said, “It’s important to remember that people are always doing the best they can, including you.”
The power of this statement resonated with me deeply when I heard it and continues to have an impact on me to this day. And, although I sometimes forget this, when I do remember that we’re all doing the best we can given whatever tools and resources we have, and the circumstances and situations we’re experiencing, it usually calms me down and creates a sense of empathy and compassion for the people I’m dealing with and for myself.
Unfortunately, too often we take things personally that aren’t, look for what’s wrong, and critically judge the people around us and ourselves, instead of bringing a sense of love, understanding, acceptance, forgiveness, and appreciation to the most important (and often most challenging) situations and relationships in our lives.
When we take a step back and remember that most of the time people aren’t “out to get us,” purposefully doing things to upset or annoy us, or consciously trying to make mistakes, disappoint us, or create difficulty (they’re simply doing the best they can and what they think makes the most sense) – we can save ourselves from unnecessary overreactions and stress. And, when we’re able to have this same awareness and compassion in how we relate to ourselves, we can dramatically alter our lives and relationships in a positive way.
Here are some things you can do and remember in this regard:
1) Give people the benefit of the doubt. Most of the time people have good intentions. Many of us, myself included, have been trained to be cautious and suspicious of others, even seeing this as an important and effective skill in life and business. However, we almost always get what we expect from people, so the more often we give people the benefit of the doubt, the more often they will prove us “right,” and the less often we will waste our precious time and energy on cynicism, suspicion, and judgmet.
2) Don’t take things personally. One of my favorite sayings is, “You wouldn’t worry about what other people think about you so much, if you realized how little they actually did.” The truth is that most people are focused on themselves much more than on us. Too often in life we take things personally that have nothing to do with us. This doesn’t mean we let people walk all over us or treat us in disrespectful or hurtful ways (it can be important for us to speak up and push back at times in life). However, when we stop taking things so personally, we liberate ourselves from needless upset, defensiveness, and conflict.
3) Look for the good. Another way to say what I mentioned above about getting what we expect from other people, is that we almost always find what we look for. If you want to find some things about me that you don’t like, consider obnoxious, or get on your nerves – just look for them, I’m sure you’ll come up with some. On the flip side, if you want to find some of my best qualities and things you appreciate about me, just look for those – they are there too. As Werner Erhard said, “In every human being there is both garbage and gold, it’s up to us to choose what we pay attention to.” Looking for the good in others (as well as in life and in ourselves), is one of the best ways to find things to appreciate and be grateful for.
4) Seek first to understand. Often when we’re frustrated, annoyed, or in conflict with another person (or group of people), we don’t feel seen, heard, or understood. As challenging and painful as this can be, one of the best things we can do is to shift our attention from trying to get other people to understand us (or being irritated that it seems like they don’t), is to seek to understand the other person (or people) involved in an authentic way. This can be difficult, especially when the situation or conflict is very personal and emotional to us. However, seeking to understand is one of the best ways for us to liberate ourselves from the grip of criticism and judgment, and often helps shift the dynamic of the entire thing. Being curious, understanding, and even empathetic of another person and their perspective or feelings doesn’t mean we agree with them, it simply allows us to get into their world and see where they’re coming from – which is essential to letting go of judgment, connecting with them, and ultimately resolving the conflict.
5) Be gentle with others (and especially with yourself).
Being gentle is the opposite of being critical. When we’re gentle, we’re compassionate, kind, and loving. We may not like, agree with, or totally understand what someone has done (or why), but we can be gentle in how we respond and engage with them. Being gentle isn’t about condoning or appeasing anyone or anything, it’s about having a true sense of empathy and perspective. And, the most important place for us to bring a sense of gentleness is to ourselves. Many of us have a tendency to be hyper self-critical. Sadly, some of the harshest criticism we dole out in life is aimed right at us. Another great saying I love is, “We don’t see people as they are, we see them as we are.” As we alter how we relate to ourselves, our relationship to everyone else and to the world around us is altered in a fundamental way.
As the Dalai Lama so brilliantly says, “If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.” Everyone around us – our friends, co-workers, significant other, family members, children, service people, clients, and even people we don’t know or care for – are doing the best they can, given the resources they have. When we remember this and come from a truly compassionate perspective (with others and with ourselves), we’re able to tap into a deeper level of peace, appreciation, and fulfillment.
http://www.DalaiLamaFilm.com – This is the first film trailer for “Dalai Lama Renaissance,” a new documentary about the Dalai Lama (which is narrated by actor Harrison Ford, whose film “Indiana Jones 4” is being released in May 2008).
Thus far, “Dalai Lama Renaissance” has won over 6 awards worldwide, and is being screened at over 24 film festivals around the world.
More information, photos and screening dates and times can be found at:http://www.DalaiLamaFilm.com
The film also features Michael Beckwith (from the film “The Secret”), and Quantum Physicists Fred Alan Wolf and Amit Goswami from “What the Bleep Do We Know.”
Looking for something to hold on to in these crazy, rapidly changing times? Then you will love PeaceJam’s new film, ‘2012: The True Mayan Prophecy’. Rigoberta Menchu, The Dalai Lama, Desmond Tutu and others tell you what you DON’T need to worry about, and the five things we all need to be doing right now in order to best survive this change in time.
Download Movie here: http://www.westword.com/mayan2012prophecy
This movie has been created to dispel the Fear about our future and help to share the Peace that we are creating everyday. What do the Maya really say about 2012? Is the world going to end on December 21, 2012? Learn more from the most famous Maya in the world, 1992 Nobel Peace Laureate Rigoberta Menchu Tum of Guatemala, and her Mayan elders. Filmed over a period of five years, this 50 minute documentary film takes you deep into the Guatemalan highlands, where a small group of elders have preserved the traditions of the ancient Mayas, passing this deep knowledge down from generation to generation in an unbroken lineage of over 2,000 years.
Today is the day that PeaceJam together with Peace in OUR Lifetime invite YOU to watch this movie with us.
Download Movie here: http://www.westword.com/mayan2012prophecy
We would be honored to hear your thoughts after watching the video … https://www.facebook.com/pages/PEACE-in-OUR-Lifetime-Im-a-Dreamer-AND-Were-Creating-it-NOW/27735287269?ref=ts
Marcia & Lynne
We all know that feeling, the sudden knot that tenses in our stomach when an extreme and negative emotion arises. These emotions often arise with good reason, the seed could be an encounter with a rude or aggressive person, some bad personal news, a surprising and disappointing reaction from a loved one or a heartbreaking headline on the news. How do we deal with these sometimes devastating emotions? Here are my thoughts on this and a simple meditation to help you cope the next time a strong emotion strikes.
Let’s begin by seeing these emotions for what they are, disturbances of the mind. We’re all seeking peace of mind by many and varied paths and these extreme emotions are obstacles to our progress. His Holiness the Dalai Lama says,
“The ultimate source of my mental happiness is my peace of mind. Nothing can destroy this except my own anger.”
So how can we return to a peaceful state of mind in the face of what might be a major life crisis? Bereavement, redundancy, accident or even abandonment?
It’s not helpful to deny what’s happening or repress our emotions. As we all know, they’ll usually come back later in more extreme and painful ways. What we can aim to do is deal with the emotions and the situation in a healthy and positive manner without evasion.
One immediate way to do this is to ‘drop the storyline’. That is, sit with the emotion, let it take it’s course but don’t feed it by replaying the ‘seed event’ over and over in your head. This way we’re not denying how we feel but we’re not amplifying it either. The space that we create allows us to respond rather than react. Connecting to this witness state is one of the many reasons to meditate.
Next time you find yourself in a situation that arouses strong emotions try the following simple Tonglen meditation to transform those emotions into love and joy:
- Sit comfortably with an upright spine.
- Settle yourself and become present to the emotion you’re experiencing, be it fear, anger, anxiety or whatever else is coming up for you.
- Let go of the storyline around the emotion. Stop thinking about the circumstances that caused your reaction and just sit with the emotion.
- Focus on your breath, making it slow and even.
- With each inhale visualize drawing the negative emotion into your heart.
- See your heart as a powerful centre of energy which transforms the negative emotion into love and joy.
- As you exhale see that love and joy flowing out with your breath and dissolving into the air.
With practice, I hope that this simple technique will assist you in finding more peace and space in your life.
Wishing you joy, love and an easeful life.
Learn more on how to create joy and love…Join me for our next session of:
Learn to Meditate – Delving Deeper: A Six Week Path to Peace
Learn to quiet your mind and find stillness, peace and calm. Allow me to help you discover your own personal meditation practice.
In this class we will investigate simple but profound meditation techniques to help you live a happier, healthier and a freer life. We will discuss the fundamentals of meditation and draw from a vast array of methods to assist you in finding, not only peace and calm, but own your personal practice.
$99 for six weeks. Go to www.balancedlifeyoga.ca to pre-register or call 905-428-2300.
Balanced Life Yoga, Ajax – Tuesday, March 1 to April 5 from 8.00 – 9.00 pm
Balanced Life Yoga, Uxbridge – Wednesday March 23 to April 27 from 7.30 – 8.30 pm.
Jacquelyn is a 500 hour RYT and Reiki Level Two practitioner. Yoga has helped her to overcome paralyzing fears and chronic pain and find her true purpose in life. Her focus is on encouraging those around her to have patience, kindness and compassion for themselves and the courage to stand, fearless, in their own light. Jacquelyn teaches Gentle Yoga, Flow Yoga, Beginners Yoga, Seniors Yoga, Learn to Meditate and a variety of workshops.
We are connected to virtually every being in the universe in some way, whether it’s indirectly or directly. Our souls are each on a mission to drive closer to the meaning of life. Though we are each on a separate journey, we realize that we need each other.
The 14th Dalai Lama once said, “if you kill your enemy, you kill yourself.” In his infinite wisdom he knows that even in the face of persecution, we must stop the cycle of fear and discord. Once we have done this, we then become closer to our own center we call the heart.
Many cultures around the world treat guests to tea and welcome them into their own personal group, before asking questions. Maybe we all need to reach out first without judgement. What is life about anyways?
Before we can have healthy connections with others, we must first become connected to self.
Each one of us has to care for that special inner being; eating the right foods, mindful meditation, plenty of clean water, regular walking/stretching, and using organic products are a good place to start. Our bodies are temples, which will not last the journey if we do not take care.
Lastly, the most important ingredient in self care is love. This love can be shared with the world. There is no greater human need.
For more information about my blogs please visit me at www.sandiee.com
The Dalai Lama (in an excerpt from the film “Dalai Lama Renaissance”) speaking about Inner Peace, Happiness, God and Money. http://www.DalaiLamaFilm.com. “Dalai Lama Renaissance” is produced and directed by Khashyar Darvich
My recent posts have highlighted two very powerful, yet opposing forces in the human heart: in a traditional metaphor, we each have a wolf of love and a wolf of hate inside us, and it all depends on which one we feed every day.
On the one hand, as the most social and loving species on the planet, we have the wonderful ability and inclination to connect with others, be empathic, cooperate, care, and love. On the other hand, we also have the capacity and inclination to be fearfully aggressive toward any individual or group we regard as “them.” (In my book – Buddha’s Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love and Wisdom – I develop this idea further, including how to stimulate and strengthen the neural circuits of self-control, empathy, and compassion.)
To tame the wolf of hate, it’s important to get a handle on “ill will” – irritated, resentful, and angry feelings and intentions toward others. While it may seem justified in the moment, ill will harms you probably more than it harms others. In another metaphor, having ill will toward others is like throwing hot coals with bare hands: both people get burned.
Avoiding ill will does not mean passivity, allowing yourself or others to be exploited, staying silent in the face of injustice, etc.
Conversations with Rajiv Mehrotra
His Holiness the Dalai Lama describes himself as “a simple Buddhist monk.” However, to millions of people around the world, he embodies the highest human aspiration: to be happy. His messages of compassion, altruism, and peace are articulated in a unique secular ethic for our times and supported with techniques and practices that can help us achieve these ideals.
He is the Dalai Lama—or simply, His Holiness—the epitome of the Buddhist model of loving-kindness and an incarnation of Avalokitesvara, the bodhisattva of infinite compassion and mercy. Evoking global respect and admiration, he is both a prophet and a statesman for our troubled times, yet he’s intensely human and accessible. He’s an inspiration to millions, yet many feel as if he touches and speaks to them personally. He is a Buddhist but belongs to all humanity. His Holiness is one of the most recognizable—and recognized—faces in the free world.
This remarkable book is an edited compilation of mostly personal conversations spanning nearly 20 years between the Dalai Lama and Rajiv Mehrotra, one of his early disciples who’s now the trustee and secretary of the Foundation for Universal Responsibility, which was established with the funds from the Nobel Peace Prize. Here, the Dalai Lama is a teacher to a spiritual aspirant; a divine master and a temporal leader; an ambassador for Tibet and a lovable guru-philosopher to the whole world; a practitioner of the 2,500-year-old teachings of Buddhism; a Tibetan Buddhist and an interfaith ambassador; and an intense practitioner of mind-training and an inveterate optimist. His multiple hats may appear contradictory at times, but he balances them all, living his life with ease and happiness.
Within these pages, the Dalai Lama’s disarming candor, his deep empathy for his student’s quest, and his wisdom—garnered not just from texts and scriptures, but also from an active engagement with life—offer invaluable insights to us all on how we may find true happiness in our lives.