Tibetan Culture Week planned before Dalai Lama visit

Oxford Press: Miami University is holding a Tibetan Culture Week March 22-26 in preparation of the Dalai Lama’s visit in October.

The week will offer a series of lectures, meditation sessions and a prayer flag ceremony that are free and open to the public.

Tibetan monk Geshe Kalsang Damdul, assistant director of the Institute of Buddhist Dialectics under the direct administration of the Dalai Lama, will lead the events.

The programs come ahead of the Dalai Lama’s visit to Miami University on Oct. 20-22 to recognize a program that takes students to Dharamsala, India for an entire semester.

“The success of the program is what promoted the Dalai Lama to accept the university’s invitation,” said Professor Deborah Akers. “He receives hundreds of invitations so we’re very lucky he accepted ours.”

The College of Higher Tibetan Studies has taken 65 students to Dharamsala with the semester-long program last fall and summer sessions during the last five years.

Students live among Tibetan refuges and take courses on Buddhist philosophy, Tibetan medicine and meditation, as well as an intensive sequence of language courses in Chinese, Tibetan and Hindi.

“The students return with a broader view on life. It’s a very unique program,” Akers said.

During Tibetan Culture Week, the public will be invited to a prayer flag ceremony at noon March 22, at the Hub near Upham Hall. During prayer flag rituals, a monk recites prayers, burns incense and makes offerings to the gods.

On March 24, Geshe Damdul will present “An Introduction to Tibetan Meditation” from 9 to 10 a.m. and a lecture “Toward a Compassionate World in the 21st Century” from 3 to 4 p.m. in 212 McMillan.

Throughout his visit, Geshe Damdul will meet with faculty and students to discuss Buddhist philosophy and issues between China and Tibet.

On March 25, “Global Women’s Day: Tibetan Women” will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Shriver Center and a showing of the film “Kundun” will take place from 7 to 9 p.m. in 101 Bachelor Hall. The Association of Women Students is sponsoring the events. The film is co-sponsored by Students for a Free Tibet.


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