Dalai Lama Visits Ise Shrine, Lectures On Religious Harmony

November 18th 2007

His Holiness Dalai Lama of Tibet pays respect to the Ise
His Holiness Dalai Lama of Tibet pays respect to the Ise's Shinto Shrine on Sunday as part of his commitment to promote religious harmony in the world. The Shrine's Chief Priest Ven. Toshiya Wada, left, and His Holiness' Tokyo representative Mr Lhakpa Tshoko (R) are seen in the photo. (Photo by Tenzin Dasel/Phayul)
Ise, Japan, 18 November 2007 (Phayul) - His Holiness the Dalai Lama visited Japan's holiest Shinto Shrine in Ise City, Mie Prefecture this morning as part of his commitment to promote religious harmony by paying respect to religious holy places around the world.

Upon arrival at the Ise Jingu, the Tibetan spiritual leader was escorted by the shrine's Chief priest Ven. Toshiya Wada through the wooded Shrine complex composed of a large number of Shinto shrines. On the way Dalai Lama purified himself with water from a river inside the site before paying respect to the main Naiku shrine.

The Tibetan spiritual leader bowed at the main shrine and offered prayer.

His Holiness on Saturday said 'promotion of religious harmony' was one of his key commitments in his life during a press briefing ahead of attending a religious forum at Kogakkan University here.

'Wherever I go, if time permits, I always pay my respect or pilgrimage to all different religious temples,' His Holiness said.

'His Holiness first visited this shrine four years ago (in 2003) and he was very much impressed by our unique spiritual tradition and Singu ritual of transferring the kami to a newly built shrine performed after every twenty years. So that's how His Holiness wanted to revisit the Shrine, and he actually did it today' an elated looking Ven. Wada told Phayul after His Holiness left the site.

Tibetan Spiritual leader the Dalai Lama takes part in interfaith Forum at Kogakkan University which was participated by Shinto religion, Buddhists and Shugendo on Sunday evening. His Holiness addressed a huge auditorium full of audience on
Tibetan Spiritual leader the Dalai Lama takes part in interfaith Forum at Kogakkan University which was participated by Shinto religion, Buddhists and Shugendo on Sunday evening. His Holiness addressed a huge auditorium full of audience on 'Religious Harmony'. (Photo by Tenzin Dasel)
The Dalai Lama later in the evening arrived at the main Kogakkan University auditorium to give lecture on 'religious harmony' at the interfaith forum with participation of panelists from Shinto religion, Buddhist and Shugendo and attended by large public audience.

Stressing on the need of religious harmony, the Dalai Lama today said promotion of unity and closer understanding among different religious faiths is extremely important.

'Religious faith can sometimes create problems and divisions due to lack of understanding. But all religions carry potentially same universal message of love and compassion,' the Dalai Lama told the gathering.

During the panel discussion on inter religious faith, His Holiness on the need to make clear all religious differences and contradictions through more discussion and thinking and find new ideas and knowledge that would help serve humanity in better ways in the long run.

'Humanity needs different approach to promote different human values and philosophies,' the Dalai Lama said, emphasizing 'Faith and reason must go together'.

Taking his own case, the Dalai Lama said, 'If humanity is happy, I get maximum benefit. If humanity (is) not happy, then I also suffer'. 'The responsibility for our future lives lies on our own shoulder. That is clear,' His Holiness said. 'So we must think, (and) think on this,' His Holiness added.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama will leave for Yokohama tomorrow morning where he will visit schools and is scheduled to give talk to some 5000 plus audience on November 20.
 

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