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Wednesday, September 28, 2005

An Audience with His Holiness


Tuesday, September 27th was an unforgettable day for SFT. His Holiness the Dalai Lama granted an audience to New York-area Tibet Support Groups including SFT, USTC (United States Tibet Committee), TJC (Tibet Justice Center) and others.

His Holiness spoke for a good fifteen minutes, during which he talked about the dangers to Tibetan survival posed by the China-Tibet Railway, the urgency of the Tibet situation, and most importantly, he spoke of hope. The thing that registered most deeply in my mind, as I listened closely to my leader's impassioned speech, was that he was getting old. But he was not giving up! Again and again, His Holiness said, "Work harder." It was as if he was acknowledging the fact that we were already working very hard - but that we need to work even harder if we were to achieve our goal. Although there were not many people in that audience, his message "Work Harder" was clearly intended for everyone working for Tibet and freedom everywhere.

After the audience, the SFT staff, board, and some of our most dedicated members and supporters went to Tibetan Kitchen to eat some momo and drink some beer (those under 21 drank water or soda, of course).

1 Comments:

  • At 12:11 PM, Blogger natdefreitas said…

    One of the things His Holiness said that stuck with me is that our struggle can't just be about Tibet. While we all are focused squarely on Tibet (and should continue to be), we must also extend our peripheral vision to observe connections between Tibet and the global need for non-violence and compassion versus the current trend of wars-without-end and nuclear build-up.

    With that in mind, here's some interesting statistics on the state of the U.S. miltary-industrial complex. Consider the effects this has on China's desire to rapidly grow and modernize their own military, especially in places like the Tibetan plateau.

    From Andy Rooney, last night on 60 Minutes:

    "No other Country spends the kind of money we (the U.S.) spend on our military. Last year Japan spent $42 billion. Italy spent $28 billion, Russia spent only $19 billion. The United States spent $455 billion.

    We have 8,000 tanks for example. One Abrams tank costs 150 times as much as a Ford station wagon.

    We have more than 10,000 nuclear weapons — enough to destroy all of mankind.

    We're spending $200 million a year on bullets alone. That's a lot of target practice. We have 1,155,000 enlisted men and women and 225,000 officers. One officer to tell every five enlisted soldier what to do. We have 40,000 colonels alone and 870 generals.

    We had a great commander in WWII, Dwight Eisenhower. He became President and on leaving the White House in 1961, he said this: “We must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. …"

    Well, Ike was right. That's just what’s happened. "

    full transcript
    |
    video

     

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