Dalai Lama speaks of compassion and universal responsibility in Utah after meeting with Mormon leaders.
A message of compassion and peace was delivered to thousands by the Dalai Lama on June 21 in Salt Lake City, Utah. A day later, he met two high level authorities in the Mormon Church. The Buddhist leader was in the state for two days. D. Todd Christofferson, the apostle and L. Whitney Clayton, the fellow general authority of the LDS church met the Tibetan monk.
According to a spokesman of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the three held a private meeting. For the Dalai Lama, it was not his first time visit to Utah. He has visited before in 2001. At that time, he had audience with the then First Presidency of the Utah-headquartered faith.
When it came to the audience, the Dalai Lama encouraged University of Utah audience to begin with themselves and with their families when it came to spread the sense of wonder present in humanity. His Holiness said that since humans are responsible for violence and for the destruction of peace and not God. They must take the responsibility to solve such problems.
The Noble Peace Prize winner was, as usual, his self-effacing best. His honorary medal was attached to a thick chain and the audience saw him wearing the distinctive white university visor. The Dalai Lama’s speech was punctuated by hearty chuckles. He even commented on the practical nature of the cap which contrasted his crimson robes.
The Dalai Lama's speech came after his visits in California and Washington D.C. He was greeted by an admiring crowd in front of his hotel in Salt Lake City. The fervor of his arrival was apparent as they waited in almost 100 degree heat. Governor Gary Herbert was his host. Other attendees included Mitt Romney, the former presidential candidate and also the mayors of county and Salt Lake City.
The Dalai Lama is coming to town. He'll have a brief, informal visit with Mormon church leaders. More: https://t.co/r5jFu4ztDf
— Annie Knox (@anniebknox) June 20, 2016
Interestingly, the meetings took place despite a letter of warning from Professor Taowen Le of Weber State University who assisted the Chinese-Utah relations. The letter stated that officials may jeopardize the relationship if they interacted in person with the Dalai Lama. Utah leaders, however, said this China connection does not imply surrendering American core values like freedom of speech. This same sentiment was present when President Barack Obama met the Tibetan spiritual leader earlier in month. The Chinese Government accuses the Buddhist leader of splitting Tibet from China.