Close this search box.


Dalai Lama Invited to Major Buddhist Conference in Mumbai after Urging Non-Violence in World Affairs


Leading Dalit activist and India’s minister for social justice and empowerment Ramdas Athawale this week invited His Holiness the Dalai Lama to “Dhamma Diksha,” an international conference on Buddhism to be held in Mumbai on 15–16 December.

The two-day conference commemorates the life and work of Dr. B. R. Ambedkar, the legal scholar and Dalit activist who converted to Buddhism in Nagpur on 14 October 1956. Dr. Ambedkar had planned to organize a Dhamma Diksha—a large initiation ceremony for Buddhists—to take place later that year, but he passed away on 6 December, before it could be carried out.

Suggesting that the Tibetan spiritual leader would attend this year’s event, Indian media company NDTV stated: “Besides the Dalai Lama, Sri Lanka prime minister Dinesh Gunawardena, Thailand prime minister Srettha Thavisin, Bhutan Princess Kesang Wangmo Wangchuk and Buddhist leaders from Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand and other countries will also attend the event.” (NDTV)

Thus far, the event has not been added to the Dalai Lama’s published calendar, which states that he will give one-day teachings in Gangtok, Sikkim, and Saugara, West Bengal, on 12 and 14 December, respectively.

Earlier in the week, the Dalai Lama released a message aimed at promoting non-violence and compassion in the world as conflicts seized news headlines on the 75th anniversary of the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

“The declaration affirms that all human beings have the right to freedom from want and freedom from fear. These human rights are inclusive, interdependent and universal,” he said, expressing optimism that people today were increasingly aware of the value of human rights. (Central Tibetan Administration)

The Dalai Lama expressed his wish to see more people choosing non-violent means to resolve conflicts, in particular utilizing dialogue: “We need effective international action to address global issues from the perspective of the oneness of humanity, and from a profound understanding of the deeply interconnected nature of our world.” (Central Tibetan Administration)

He referenced the Buddhist teachings on loving-kindness as a practice for breaking down sharp divisions between “us” and “them.” Importantly, he urged people to avoid distinctions based on political or religious differences and pointed to the economic roots of social disharmony, poor health, and violence, noting that the gap between the “haves” and “have-nots” was a major problem.

“The aspiration for democracy and respect for fundamental human rights are as important to the people of Africa and Asia as they are to those in Europe or the Americas,” His Holiness said. (Central Tibetan Administration)

Dr. Ambedkar, who held doctorates in economics from Columbia University in New York and the London School of Economics, had a number of plans to benefit the people of India through economic means. Dr. Ambedkar had seriously considered Marxism as a possible path forward for India before later rejecting it and embracing Buddhism.

See more

Union Minister Meets Dalai Lama, Invites Him For Conference On Buddhism (NDTV)
Union minister invites Dalai Lama to major int’l Buddhist event in Mumbai this month (Tibetan Review)
His Holiness the Dalai Lama Emphasises Non-Violence and Compassion To Resolve Conflicts (Central Tibetan Administration)
His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet

Related news reports from BDG

Dalai Lama Congratulates Mongolia’s New Khamba Lama, Pledges Financial Assistance for Nepal after Deadly Earthquake
The First B.R. Ambedkar Statue Erected in the United States Unveiled in Maryland
Thousands of Dalits Embrace Buddhism in Gujarat on Birth Anniversary of Dr. B. R. Ambedkar
Dalai Lama Expresses Solidarity after Deadly Flooding in Sikkim, Pledges Financial Support
Dalai Lama Points to the Heart of the Buddhadharma as Buddhists Around the World Observe Vesak
India Honors Dr. B. R. Ambedkar with New Statue, Circuit Train, and Calls for Social Change
Buddhist Reformer B. R. Ambedkar to be Honored with New Statue at Temple in England

Related features from Buddhistdoor Global

Related news from Buddhistdoor Global

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments