Dalai Lama Urges Australian MPs to Visit Tibet

December 10th 2009

Melbourne, Australia, 9 December 2009 (phayul.com) - The exiled Tibetan leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama on Wednesday addressed Victorian MPs in the Parliament House and spoke at the 2009 Parliament of the World's Religions in Melbourne.

The Dalai Lama, who is currently towards the last leg of his 11-day tour of Australia and New Zealand, spoke to 100 people, including 10 MPs, in a private address organised by the informal group Victorian MPs for Tibet this morning, according Australian media report.

In a speech to MPs that lasted more than 30 minutes, the Dalai Lama promoted peace, harmony and secularism, AAP reported.

The exiled Tibetan leader also urged Australian MPs to visit Tibet to test Chinese claims about Buddhist practices and the Chinese government's transparency.

"Trust with the outside world is essential,'' he said

It was the Tibetan leader's only address at an Australian parliament during this visit. He spoke in a committee room and did not address the chamber.

But Victoria State Premier Mr John Brumby was noticeably absent when the Dalai Lama addressed the MPs at the Parliament House this morning.

Mr Brumbby reportedly blamed a scheduling issue for his failure to meet the exiled Tibetan leader and said he had met the Dalai Lama on three or four occasions in the past decade.

He said it had nothing to do with damaging relations with China.

"I've met the Dalai Lama a couple of times before and once when I was opposition leader back in the 1990s, I think on his first visit to Melbourne," he told reporters.

"I just wasn't able to today ... my program is often busy and booked out well in advance."

The Dalai Lama was introduced to Opposition Leader Ted Baillieu, saying he always sides with the "minority", to which Mr Baillieu replied: "We are the strongest but we are the minority."

The Dalai Lama later told the media he was not fazed by politicians that had not met with him.

"My visit (is) non political," he said.

The Nobel Peace Prize winner maintained that the main purpose of his was to meet the Australian public.

The Dalai Lama also addressed the closing session of the week-long 2009 Parliament of the World's Religions conference in Melbourne today.

In his speech, His Holiness said said that while humans enjoyed great material development they suffered from a moral and ethical crisis.

The parliament drew about 5000 people from around the world representing 228 religions.

"Unless human emotions change to reason and we experience a holistic view, then these problems won't be solved," he told the gathering of about 2000 people in Melbourne.

"The global economy is stuck in emotions such as greed - too much greed - and short sightedness that affects environmental issues and sees national interest take more priority than global interests.

"Some areas are materially much advanced but the rate of suicide is increasing.

"Some people describe this as a crisis of moral ethics. Without development of our inner brain and compassion, concern for others, sense of community, this crisis which humanity is facing will not go."

The colourful closing ceremony treated the crowd to musical and artistic performances and speeches representing major religions and indigenous peoples including Australian Aborigines.

The speakers reportedly said all of the world's religions brought the same message of peace but had different styles of doing so and should collaborate more.

 

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