Most of the spiritual teachers or practitioners like us feel that spirituality has the answer or solution to every problem. I believe that spirituality prepares our mind to see the world in a more complete way, but in terms of practical solutions, we still need material or mundane support. Maybe I am wrong, very often I feel that mundane or material support is badly needed to nourish spirituality. I don’t believe that we have to sacrifice spirituality for mundane development, or sacrifice mundane progress for spirituality. Both have to be developed or progress together in order to achieve balance in life.
If I am allowed to say, I think that a lot of chaos, problems or disasters we are experiencing today are due to a lack of balance between spirituality and materialism. We can explain these two in many different ways. For example, spirituality is the wholesome kindness that includes well being of everyone, materialism deals more with the individual success. But if we are able to be successful individually for the sake of others, then the world will be improved, won’t it?
Anyway, the point is that spiritual understanding has to be there in our mundane life, and mundane support has to be there in our spiritual development. Both are very important in making sure that our life will not be in trouble.
In the last couple of months, I have been meeting many different people, aspiring scientists, successful businessmen, well-connected politicians and celebrities, movie stars and singers, as well as many, many other people from a variety of backgrounds. I met them at the different UN meetings, CERN, WHO, Green Cross etc. The world is made up of different people. This is what makes our short life here very interesting and full of colours. Imagine if there are only one kind of humans, one kind of animals, I think there won’t be much creative for us to do, because we will be like robots.
I daringly said in one of the TV interviews in America that being united doesn’t mean that a leader has to be putting everyone under him or her control. It may work in the short term, but it will be very painful in the long term, because everyone is different. Respect and appreciate the different backgrounds, the different cultures, the different origins, different traditions, through mutual understanding and exchanges, I think this will gradually bring us closer to the world peace we all are longing for. Inner peace can only be developed through genuine appreciation of others and of the differences. The power of genuine appreciation and respect brings freedom and a contented sense of fearlessness. Fearless because of freedom, fearless because of self confidence.
We as spiritual practitioners talk and preach a lot about benefiting all sentient beings. I am sorry to say that sometimes I feel that we are not putting enough of our words into action. When I visited the headquarters of WHO and CERN, I was so moved by the amount of practical effort these doctors and scientists have put together to find solutions to our problems. We have a lot of problems in this world. Even though as advanced or experienced meditators, we realise that all phenomena are empty in nature, Shunyata, Great Union, etc, and even though as some people say, we have accomplished spiritual enlightenment and we have full understanding of karma, I don’t know if we have done as much work as these scientists and doctors. They are really the people out there doing a lot of work and finding solutions for us. CERN has more than 200 world’s most respected scientists working day and night to find solutions for our problems today and tomorrow. The 3 “w” we see in front of all the websites: www or World Wide Web were invented by CERN scientists to link information together.
When I was visiting their offices in Geneva, I could only see happy faces and smiles on the face of everyone working there. I think this is because there is a very clear purpose in the life they live and in the work that they are doing for others. Happiness comes naturally when you live a life benefiting more than just yourself. This is a natural law of the universe. When we are able to benefit not only ourselves but also others, we naturally glow with a sense of confidence. Your life becomes useful, you are less selfish, this is the path to happiness.
I am very proud that they have invited us, as representatives of Live to Love, to visit and share our very limited experience. But the fact that we have something to share is a great news, isn’t it? Every being has something to contribute, nature has given so much to us, we should again respect and appreciate this. Therefore, I really look forward to being able to work with scientists and doctors. I am quite sure that there is a very strong connection between spirituality and science. It is not my world, but our world that we have to be working together to make better. Increasing spiritual understanding should not be threatening scientific development, and a progress in scientific development also should not be sacrificing spiritual understanding. Both are badly needed, they compliment each other.
I want to take this opportunity to thank all my students and friends working at the different Live to Love chapters, for becoming a bridge between spirituality and materialism. I can see that we are making some progress, but we still have a long way to go. I especially would like to give credit to Live to Love International in New York and Live to Love Germany for taking the lead in organising the different activities. I am also grateful and happy that Live to Love France and Live to Love Switzerland have taken up the responsibility to organise my visit with our kung fu nuns there. It’s amazing that Live to Love France managed to put together the Pad Yatra movie screening in the largest theatre in France with thousands of people. When people work without any personal agenda and genuinely using their effort to benefit others, the results would shine. The most obvious positive result was the harmony among the members and volunteers. There was not one single complaint about anyone, everyone was supporting each other because everyone was purely working from their heart wishing to help others. Their own self interest was not important. Whether appreciation came to them or not was not important. The important thing was the message and activities of Live to Love. I am therefore very proud of the organisers and the volunteers.
So taking the lead is very important. Taking the lead means that we are not afraid of failures or obstacles, we are going ahead no matter what. Most of you have received “Jigme” in your names from me, it means “fearless”. Only genuine fearlessness to take the lead in turning impossibility into reality will eventually give us the opportunity to help and benefit all the beings, beyond religions, beyond traditions, beyond cultures, beyond nationalities and one day, beyond realms of existence. I look forward to seeing great progress in the activities and results of Live to Love.
Whatever good and positive actions we are doing, I hope this is an example for others who have more resources and ability than us to do better and bigger job, much more than what we are doing. This is from the bottom of my heart.