Last week, a major announcement was made in Alabama that is going to bring someone very special to the Birmingham Metro. On October 24-27, the Dalai Lama will come to the Birmingham Metro, and this is going to spur a lot of great things, along with the media wanting to get every second available with His Holiness. Here is video of the Dalai Lama giving the opening prayer at the US Senate a few weeks ago.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama will be visiting several events all across the Birmingham Metro from October 24th to October 27th later in 2014. The biggest event featuring the Dalai Lama will be the public event at Regions Field on October 26th. Other than some people commenting on other sites about how a visit from the Dalai Lama is a bad thing for the Christian South, the visit from this special leader is a great thing for Alabama, and if done right, it could bring some good things for Alabama in the terms of great publicity.
First off, if you don’t know the Three Main Commitments from the Dalai Lama, read this below.
Firstly, on the level of a human being, His Holiness’ first commitment is the promotion of human values such as compassion, forgiveness, tolerance, contentment and self-discipline. All human beings are the same. We all want happiness and do not want suffering. Even people who do not believe in religion recognize the importance of these human values in making their life happier. His Holiness refers to these human values as secular ethics. He remains committed to talk about the importance of these human values and share them with everyone he meets.
Secondly, on the level of a religious practitioner, His Holiness’ second commitment is the promotion of religious harmony and understanding among the world’s major religious traditions. Despite philosophical differences, all major world religions have the same potential to create good human beings. It is therefore important for all religious traditions to respect one another and recognize the value of each other’s respective traditions. As far as one truth, one religion is concerned, this is relevant on an individual level. However, for the community at large, several truths, several religions are necessary.
Thirdly, His Holiness is a Tibetan and carries the name of the ‘Dalai Lama’. Therefore, his third commitment is to work to preserve Tibet’s Buddhist culture, a culture of peace and non-violence.
The upcoming visit from His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet is a great thing for Alabama. The leader is not going to be pressuring people to convert to Buddhism. Alabama is already a deeply religious state, the leader wants people to continue to be religious, no matter what domination of religion a person practices. Another thing that makes the Dalai Lama visit to Alabama very special, is the history with civil and human rights in Birmingham. As people already know, Birmingham was the hot bed of violence back in the 1960’s with racial segregation. The Dalai Lama preaches on peace and equal human values. If Birmingham can show off how much it has grown since the dark days, it could mean a great sign of things to come!
Mayor William Bell and other leaders in Birmingham are wanting to show off how much the city has changed with its “50 Years Forward” incentive. Mr. Bell has called the upcoming visit by the Dalai Lama significant as the city works to showcase Birmingham and its history on a national and international stage. The Dalai Lama has mentioned Dr. King’s ‘Letter from Birmingham Jail‘ as a significant inspiration of his. And the entire weekend is going to stress a theme of human rights and include participation from schools, libraries, and museums.
If Birmingham plays its cards right, the upcoming visit from the Dalai Lama could show people from around the world that Birmingham and the state of Alabama is not a bad place to visit. Yes, there are still some people out there who are skeptical of Alabama, and they have never stepped foot inside the state. After all the pictures, videos, and articles from the Dalai Lama visit, people could become more favorable of people from Alabama. And it could mean more people visiting, more people relocating, more people creating jobs, and increasing the overall quality of life of people living in Alabama.
I can’t wait to see the Dalai Lama visiting Alabama. I hope Geek Alabama and me Nathan Young gets a chance to visit this special leader! Welcome to Alabama His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet!
Learn more about the Dalai Lama at: http://www.dalailama.com/
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