Concern for others is not just a matter of religious practice; it’s a practical step towards creating a happy society. If you have trouble with your neighbours, try to resolve it. It is possible to transform today’s enemy into tomorrow’s friend. Think about this, discuss it with your friends; try to put it into effect.

Dalai Lama
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For a practitioner of love and compassion, an enemy is one of the most important teachers. Without an enemy you cannot practice tolerance, and without tolerance you cannot build a sound basis of compassion.

Dalai Lama
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The main practice of all major religions is love and to defend it against obstacles we need tolerance and forgiveness. Consequently, all major religions talk about compassion, tolerance, contentment, and self-discipline. The teachers of our various traditions have been realistic in their advice. Because self-centredness often leads to greed, they all advise cultivating contentment and simplicity in our lives.

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Human beings naturally pursue their own interests; however, self-centredness is very limiting. When you’re concerned about others, bullying and exploitation cease. There are two levels of compassion, one a biological instinct, the other the result of awareness. Just wishing to be compassionate, or saying that God or the Buddha wants us to be compassionate is not very effective. What we need is education and training.

Dalai Lama
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Whether we follow a religious path or not, as human beings we all need affection. Warm-heartedness gives rise to the self-confidence and inner strength that supports a calm mind. Peace of mind in turn contributes to our physical health. This is based on the fostering of the basic human values that I promote as secular ethics.

Dalai Lama
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When we see images of the earth from space, we see no boundaries between us, just this one blue planet, where climate change affects us all, where the global economy brings us all together. In the past, Tibet, surrounded by mountains, cherished its isolation. But, such isolation is outdated. Today, we need to take account of the well-being of the whole of humanity and preserving the health of the planet.

Dalai Lama
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External circumstances can contribute to one’s happiness and well-being, but ultimately happiness and suffering depend on the mind.

Dalai Lama
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Man surprised me most about humanity. Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.

Dalai Lama
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All beings want to live undisturbed in peace and happiness. Therefore, the concept of human rights is universal. It should apply to everyone who experiences pain or pleasure. This is why developing sincere concern for others gives us peace of mind; it brings with it trust and a sense of peace. Cultivating warm-heartedness contributes to our own well-being.

Dalai Lama
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As a child I was interested in science and when I was older decided I’d like to talk to scientists to find out more about it. An American Buddhist warned me that science was a killer of religion, but I thought about the Buddha’s admonition not to accept his teachings at face value but to examine and test them, to analyse them and experiment. I decided there wasn’t a risk and 30 years ago began discussions with scientists.

Dalai Lama, 2004
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We must have a pure, honest, and warm-hearted motivation, and on top of that, determination, optimism, hope, and the ability not to be discouraged. The whole of humanity depends on this motivation.

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Today, as we wish each other a Happy New Year, let us determine to be more sincere, compassionate, warm-hearted human beings, trying to make our world a more equal place. That way we’ll actually make it a happy year.

Dalai Lama
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There are differences between us of faith and nationality and within those groups there are individuals who are rich and others who are poor; all of us have a right to live in peace. The idea of human rights is what freedom is about. It takes for granted the idea that human nature is gentle. This is why concern for the well-being of others makes us free.

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We all have the potential to show others love and affection, but as we progress in our materialistic world, these values tend to remain dormant. We can develop them on the basis of common sense, common experience and scientific findings. The response to the recent tragedy in the Philippines is an example of how such values are awakened; people helped simply because others are suffering and in need of support.

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