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Islam misunderstood: Dalai Lama at Jamia

One’s understanding of Islam should not be “generalised” and based on the activities of a few people,the Dalai Lama said.

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi |
November 24, 2010 4:39:17 am

One’s understanding of Islam should not be “generalised” and based on the activities of a few people,the Dalai Lama said on Tuesday.

The Tibetan spiritual leader was speaking at Jamia Millia Islamia’s convocation after receiving the Degree of Doctor of Letters (Honoris Causa) from Jamia’s Vice-Chancellor Najeeb Jung.

“Islam has been misunderstood due to some mischievous people who happened to have an Islamic background,” he said,referring to the September 11 “event”.

The Dalai Lama,who began his speech in Tibetan,switched over to English,prefacing it with a lengthy apology for his broken English.

Newsline had reported on Tuesday that the Ministry of External Affairs finally gave its assent to awarding the Dalai Lama,winner of the 1989 Nobel Peace Prize,with a doctorate. “His humanism has always triumphed over politics — his message of compassion,altruism and peace has made him a statesman for our troubled times,” states the degree citation.

A total of 3,529 diplomas were awarded to students who have successfully completed post-graduation,graduation and diplomas from different Jamia centres in 2008-09. The university also handed out 147 gold medals to the toppers of different courses and awarded 127 PhD degrees.

The Dalai Lama,who easily established a rapport with his audience,devoted much of his time emphasising the importance of morals. The graduates should have their vision and moral principles intact if they are to be successful,he said. “This is your century; I belong to a different century. We have had only ten years in this century,the next 90 years are yours. I keep telling people that you should have vision and moral principles,” the Dalai Lama told youngsters. In his address,V-C Jung talked of the global stature of the spiritual leader and his similarity to Mahatma Gandhi. “The Dalai Lamas have historically been the spiritual and temporal leaders of the Tibetan people,but in exile and adversity,the 14th Dalai Lama’s aura has grown to encompass the world,” Jung said in his speech.

“He is the true inheritor in the contemporary world of the message of peace and non-violence pioneered by Mahatma Gandhi. “If there is anyone who has stood for the power of non-violent persuasion in the contemporary world,who has restored our faith in the moral critique,it is His Holiness the Dalai Lama,” said Jung.

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