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Sort of a diary for myself ... but you can read it too.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Atlanta Visit - Day Three - Part Two

Sunday Oct. 21st

Sunday afternoon we attended the First Emory Summit on Religion, Conflict, and Peace building.

This 3,000 person event featured on-stage, His Holiness the Dalai Lama—in conversation with religious leaders from Hindu, Christian, Jewish, and Muslim communities, including Rabbi David Rosen, Sister Joan Chittister, Professor Rajmohan Gandhi (the grandson of Mahatma Gandhi), and Professor Abdullahi Ahmed An-Na'im.

The Dalai Lama seemed, as might have been expected, to not talk too much about peace building through religion and conflict but rather through brain development, warm heartedness, peace of mind and parental/friend affection. He was his usual joyful self ... full of humor and innocence. it was such a great experience to hear him speak.

Each of the religious leaders also spoke on how the religions of the world could work together to reduce violent conflict and build peaceful, pluralistic societies.

The whole event was incredible and deeply moving, hearing each of these religious 'icons' speak. I especially enjoyed the speeches given by Rabbi David Rosen and Sister Joan Chittister, the latter getting the most reaction and applause from the crowd.

The summit concluded with a short ceremony of the concencration of the Sand Mandala for Peace and Compassion that the Drepung Monks had been working on all week.

The entire summit can be viewed in Realplayer by clicking here (it is very well worth it if you have 2 1/2 hours to spare)

The first 1/2 hour is mostly introductions from Emory Faculty. At the :41 minute mark you can view Rajmohan Gandhi giving the Dalai Lama the Peace Pilgrim award from the Gandhi Foundation. The Dalai Lama's lecture begins at about the :47 minute mark. His description of affection from animals by mimicking their actions is worth viewing.

Rabbi David Rosen can be viewed at the 1:07 mark.

and Sister Joan Chittister can be viewed at the 1:27 mark.

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