Dalai Lama talks about how to have a happy life at Berkeley event
BERKELEY, Calif. (KGO) -- Thousands of people in the Bay Area are feeling more enlightened after spending part of the day with the Dalai Lama. But his message of peace was met with shouts of protest.
The Dalai Lama's last stop of the day Sunday was the Ritz Carlton Hotel in San Francisco. Before that his biggest public event of the day was in Berkeley where he talked about how to be happy, but not everybody there was.
The auditorium at Berkeley High School was packed with those who paid $50 to hear the Dalai Lama speak.
When his holiness took the stage, he complained the lights were too bright; so, with a laugh, he put on a sun visor.
The soft-spoken Tibetan spiritual leader talked about how to live a happy life.
"Mentally, emotionally, physically, we are the same," he said. "And more important, I want a happy life, you also want a happy life."
Achieving happiness, he says, includes forgiveness and compassion for others and society
"We all really need to work together, and a sense of oneness of humanity," said the Dalai Lama. "To me, that is very very important."
The two hour talk left Walnut Creek resident Ugyen Dolma energized. Like the Dalai Lama, she fled Tibet when she was very young.
"I was so blessed to see him," she said. "How wonderful it is we have this wonderful leader of the world, I am ready to die tomorrow with no regrets."
Fellow Walnut Creek resident Robert Mulder added, "The word compassion really tops the list. And to walk out and to carry that notion day in and day out, I feel like he set a journey, a journey for all of us today."
Nearby, protesters who are Shugden Buddhists, we're not as enlightened to see the Dalai Lama. They say he has excommunicated thousands of Shugden Buddhists because he claims their faction harms and divides his followers.
The group provided us with video of protesters confronting the Dalai Lama about religious freedom.
"This is not religion, this is worship of spirit, so that's wrong," said the Dalai Lama in the video.
Earlier in the day on Sunday, a large crowd of supporters came out as the Dalai Lama made a stop in Richmond, where he blessed the Tibetan Community Center. He briefly spoke to the crowd inside, had some tea, and then addressed a larger audience outside.
And later in the day, the Dalai Lama honored local unsung heroes of compassion. An awards ceremony was held at the Ritz Carlton Hotel.
The Dalai Lama is scheduled to be in the U.S. for another two weeks.
dalai lama, protest, religion, berkeley, local news
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