Did You Know That The Dalai Lama Was Here?
By Cultural Limits on February 23, 2014 • ( 3 )
Don’t you lecture me young man
In what has to be the most under-reported story of the past week, the Dalai Lama was in Washington Thursday and Friday, attending a seminar at the American Enterprise Institute titled “Happiness, free enterprise and human flourishing: a special online event featuring His Holiness Dalai Lama,” stopped by the White House to see Barack Obama where BO embarrassed us yet again, and China threw a temper tantrum over the visit.
What, the Dalai Lama, non-Christian religious leader that he is, is suddenly unfashionable? Multiple outlets did not see fit to report that journalists were not allowed into the MAP ROOM – not even the Oval Office – for a photo op? Hello? McFly! Is the American Media really that out of it?
It is true that the man is a thorn in the side of China. He still is the main leader for the Tibetan autonomy movement. Predictably, China claimed that receiving the Dalai Lama at the White House was interfering with internal Chinese affairs. SOURCE And ANOTHER SOURCE
If one takes the Dalai Lama for who he claims to be – a world-wide religious leader of a religion that doesn’t worship a deity – then there is no real issue with him visiting another world leader of a religiously free people. That Obama insulted him by receiving him in a less than formal manner when several other presidents have afforded him that honor…that’s embarrassing and probably a way to compromise with not just the Chinese, but whoever is in charge of the muslim world. (Although why we care what China or muslims have to say on this is a mystery.)
But what is more interesting in light of a couple Townhall articles today is the AEI event which explores free enterprise and human happiness.
If we are to believe progressives and the messages that have infected the west for over a hundred years now, happiness is all about self-fulfillment and having the resources to play to our heart’s content. That implies no sacrificing, work as a means to an end, and so on. About the only people applauded for great sacrifice anymore are veterans and members of the military. Very much deserved, but sacrifice is not a part of the overall culture. Not anymore.
Anymore, we expect life to hand us happiness and fulfillment through a career and putting ourselves first. If we are religious, we expect religion to exist for us, not us for it. Faith is to be effortless. That really, in the end, is not so spiritually fulfilling. There is no triumph in a hard won battle.
That is where columns like Doug Giles’ offering this morning, “Lessons from God via ‘Dude You’re Screwed’” are so refreshing. Maybe it is just that he is a former special forces member and recognizes that life is not a bed of roses and never will be, but his forthrightness when he says, “This test from hell is on purpose” in relation to life and what we go through just to be a part of the human race is refreshing.
True, we probably do not share the same brand of Christianity, but Giles’ lessons from God in this morning’s column are part of the teaching of my brand even if we use different reasoning and Scripture passages. Always be ready because you REALLY don’t know what God has in store.
And then there was the headline that screamed “Are couples happier without kids?” That such a sentiment is taylor made for the global overpopulation doomsayer crowd is obvious. Demonstrating that sacrifice in the name of anything other than self is no longer a jaw dropping occasion in America – yeah, we’re there.
Which circles back to the Dalai Lama being a guest at a capitalistic think tank’s special event on happiness, free enterprise and human flourishing. Is this a shorthand way of saying that money doesn’t buy happiness or by itself money and financial achievement are not fulfilling? Or is it the argument that morality applied to the open market is the best way toward advancing economics? (Rerum Novarum anyone?) It sounds like the AEI is trying to justify the practice of religion – any religion – as an integral part of a free market. If that is the case, what a waste of time and money. This was settled long ago.
The event abstract is pretty much flowery gobbledygook, so who knows. It is telling, though, that AEI had the Dalai Lama rather than the leader of any other faith to discuss this. In Buddhism, there is no deity involved, peaceful as the religion may be. It’s very much an observation of the human condition in the world as I understand it.
And what is with the White House insulting the man by not even having a photo op? Does relations with China, a human rights violations machine, trump manners?
This is the state of America today. Where an economic think tank has a discussion on human fulfillment and free enterprise, sacrifice is more or less scoffed at unless one is in the military, faith is done at one’s leisure and the president has no trouble insulting one of the world’s most renowned leaders.
It’s really enough to make a patriot weep.http://constitutionclub.org/2014/02/23/did-you-know-that-the-dalai-lama-was-here/