Tibet’s exiled spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, warned not to
generalize Muslims as a negative force and
called on believers of different faiths to reach out to one
On a lecture tour of the United States, the world’s best-known
Buddhist monk said that every religion including his own had
“mischievous” people and that he has made efforts to reach out to
Muslims since the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.
“Due to some mischievous
action or destructive action carried out by some mischievous
Muslims, due to that, to generalize the whole of Islam as
something negative is totally unfair, unjust,” he said to
“We need more effort to reach out to other faiths,” he
said at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia.
Historically, in most cases of conflict in the name of religion
“the real reason is not religious faith, but economic reasons” or
power struggles, he added.
The Dalai Lama, who has lived in exile
in India since fleeing Chinese rule in Tibet in 1959, said that
Buddhists had suffered under Muslim rule in India but that he
believed “the past is past.”
He voiced admiration for the ability
of different religious communities to live together in India.
“I think, really, a thousand years
religious harmony (is) already there. So I think the rest of the
world should learn from India’s experience like that,” he said.
The Dalai Lama is spending two
weeks touring the eastern United States for public talks on some
of his favorite themes, including compassion, religious harmony