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Dalai Lama’s fifth visit to Indiana over the past 20 years


A Rare Spiritual Light, Teacher, and Humanitarian of Our Times

Nearly a thousand people – religious, civic, and community leaders, dignitaries, students, and Tibetan Monks warmly and enthusiastically welcomed His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet at a colorful and moving Inter-Faith Prayer Service in “Commemoration of the visit of His Holiness to Bloomington, Indiana.” Some of the guests at the Prayer Service had travelled long distances to attend the Prayer Service and see His Holiness. Others were there to attend special Teachings by His holiness at Indiana University or participate in other functions organized around the 6-day visit His Holiness to Indiana. This was The Dalai Lama’s fifth visit to Indiana over the past 20 years.

At the Inter-faith Prayer service leaders and representatives of many faith traditions – Christian, Catholic, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Baha’i, Unitarian Universalist, American Indian, and Sikh offered in their traditional styles prayers, chants, sacred songs, and messages of harmony and unity. Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels issued a special Proclamation for the occasion and declared October 23, 2007 as “A Day of Peace.” A wonderfully-assembled Choir offered rich and spirited renditions of sacred and special musical compositions in English and Tibetan, in vocals and with a variety of musical instruments. The beautiful and memorable Inter-Faith Prayer Service at the St. Paul’s Catholic Center in Bloomington was organized and directed by Brother Benedict, O.P., and assisted by Gyatso Arjia Rinpoche, Director of The Tibetan-Mongolian Cultural Center, and members of Inter-Faith Prayer Service Planning Committee.

His Holiness attended and participated in the Inter-Faith Prayer Service. He blessed several of the Prayer Service presenters with sacred traditional Tibetan silk scarves. During his brief remarks, His Holiness offered his message of peace and compassion, forgiveness and tolerance. His Holiness exuded incredible reverence for all faiths, advocated respect for our own embraced spiritual traditions, and added, “All religions use different methods and different ways of approach. But they have the same end.” It was a truly moving experience to be in the presence of His Holiness and receive his blessing.

A specially designed colorful Mandala created by Gyatso Arjia Rinpoche and the Tibetan Monks proclaimed a spirit and passion for Peace and Unity of all faiths and the sanctity of our shared planet Earth. The beautiful sand Mandala, with a ring of interlocking hearts and religious symbols of each faith and the word ‘peace’ in different language scripts was installed in the Lobby of St. Paul’s Catholic Center for everyone to see as a reminder and representation as our universal hopes and prayer, our interconnectedness and collective spiritual heritage. The Mandala, an unmistakable icon of unity, invited us to honor our many diverse faiths, cultures, and traditions as a source of inspirations and blessings.

His Holiness arrived in Indiana after receiving the Congressional Gold Medal at the U.S. Capitol in Washington on October 17, 2007. His schedule in Indiana included public talks at Indiana University and Purdue University, three days of Teachings at the I.U. Auditorium in Bloomington to thousands of followers of Tibetan Buddhism and other faithful and interested students, and attending several private events with major sponsors and supporters of the Tibetan-Mongolian Cultural Center in Bloomington. His Holiness inaugurated the newly designed entrances to the Tibetan-Mongolian Cultural Center.

His Holiness, venerated as the god-king by the Tibetan Buddhists, has resided in India since 1959 when he fled his country following the Chinese occupation of Tibet.

Kanwal Prakash “KP” Singh
Indianapolis, Indiana USA














Oct. 2007

The Inter-Faith Prayer Service in commemoration of the visit of His Holiness The Dalai Lama to Bloomington, Indiana.