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"We Tibetans are looking for a legitimate and meaningful autonomy, an arrangement that would enable Tibetans to live within the framework of the People’s Republic of China."

Three Reasons to See 10 Questions for the Dalai Lama

April 3, 2009

By Sam Rolens
Santa Barbara Independent
April 2, 2009

When Rick Ray traveled to India with nothing more
than a dream of meeting the Dalai Lama, he found
hope in strange places. He calls India a place
where things get done “from the ground.” What did
this mean for Ray? In the end, it meant finding a
kindred spirit who happened to have the Dalai Lama’s email address.

With 10 questions he compiled with help from
friends and supporters, the fruition of Ray’s
dream to meet His Holiness was captured in his
film along with his journey across India. Ray’s
humbling quest to find a few simple answers will
screen Tuesday, April 7, at 7 p.m. at the Santa
Barbara Natural History Museum (2559 Puesta Del
Sol Rd.) to compliment His Holiness’s S.B.
arrival on April 24. Here are three reasons to
check out Ray’s film, 10 Questions for the Dalai Lama.

The Dalai Lama

1) His Holiness Himself: His charm has not been
exaggerated. Even when speaking of violent crimes
common in the West, the Dalai Lama wears his
iconic smile, changed subtly into one of
understanding and pity. He believes sentient life
may exist on other planets, and that picnics can
do a lot to bring peace between people.

2) A New Perspective on Change: "At heart," Ray
says, "he’s really a practical man. He really
believes that if our religious doctrine doesn’t
match up with scientific investigation, the
doctrine should change—not the science." Not a
man to discard his beliefs or hard evidence, the
Dalai Lama is all about consolidation. When the
Earth was proven not to be the center of the
Universe, as it was believed to be for countless
generations in Tibet, Ray says the Dalai Lama was
the first to suggest a compromise. “We need to
change the book, not throw it out.”

3) Humility: No mystic answers to ancient
questions can be drawn from the religious leader,
who purports to be nothing more than a common
man. "He combines Buddhist wisdom with every day
truisms,” explains Ray. His answers -- much like
Ray’s film -- are simple, seemingly obvious, and elusively profound.
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