>> good morning. this is a very special program. we are going to explore tibetan buddhism. we are joined and honored to have you with us, a good friend of mosaic, professor of buddhist art aesthetics and culture at the graduate theological union. i have asked ron to help us. in these first two segments we will share a little bit about the broad nature of tibetan buddhism to remind us of the aspects and the history and what it is. in the last two segments we'll talk a little bit about his life and the amazing story that
brought him here. ron, if you would act as a little bit of a host here and kick us off. what do we need to know about tibetan buddhism? >> i think it is best that we ask venorable here because he is from the tradition and the culture. can you tell us a little bit about the history of of tibetan buddhism, how it changed a little bit and maybe talk about the three ms, mudra, mandela, mantra. it could be very prominent in the practice of tibetan buddhism buddhism. >> it is the buddhism in india, 2500 years in india and in
tibet the buddhist tech came very early. generally speaking tibetan buddhism -- came to tibet and then just covered it with the tibetan school. we have four different schools of buddhism, red hat. we have black hat. we have yellow hat. also there is traditionally tibetan as a buddhist culture with another aspect. it is integrated with the buddhism cultures. so we have this tibetan
buddhist culture fully involving tibetan life in tibet. so tibet is not different than india buddhism philosophy, but we have a different cultural aspect. we have a different lineage. they have a different way to practice. we have a lot of levels. one is for the community, the general people and another one for the monestic traditionals. in another one we do the mantras and mandelas, those initiations. these are very fully involved. the interesting thing is when you look, it looks like a lot
of chanting, mantra. but it is a very high level practice. it is one of the highest tibetan practices. it has so much meaning and detail. bottom line is according to the tibetan buddhism, there is so much into the mind of buddhism. you have developed your mind to benefit from all things and beings, not only for yourself being happy. this is all involved for the whole community. sense and being is not only like human being. it is all beings. animals are included. tibetan buddhism is one of the highly involved with all
beings. this is also not only for tibetan -- since little boy we have the understanding of no harm to any beings because that is the understanding. >> that's fundamental. >> yes. >> to cultivate one's self and then through that cultivation, whatever we learn, we help other people. >> yes. >> this is fundamental to all of buddhism. >> yes. >> can you tell us a little bit about the recent history of tibetan buddhism? we know that in 1959 the dali llama came to india and you at
other is mahana. teraboda is movement of the elders and mahana is great vehicles. tibetan buddhism is a branch or another manifestation of mahana buddhism. in all the schools we have two primary missions. one is to acquire wisdom for one's self and once acquiring wisdom, one is to share this. this is called compassion. wisdom and compassion. another great virtue is what we call upia. it's how we use wisdom in the process of compassion and one of the manifestations of compassion is to be able to
share one's compassion through multiple generations, multiple lifetimes. this is where in tibet they have fully developed what they call a clinical system of reincarnation of one life to another to share one's great wisdom. we will talk more about that later. can you say something about the system in tibet? >> yes. in tibet, it started in like year 11,000. >> 11. >> it became very significant with the tibetan buddhists because it's two groups and responsibilities are becoming for the preservation of the monastic very seriously and the leadership became into the power involved with the
community and the community, how it connected. basically the turko, monastery and lay people community connected by the relationship and wisdom. what i mean is because tibetan buddhism, like the professor says, tibetan buddhism is mainly mayan practice. it is benefit for all sense and being. not only your aspect. any aspect, even the lay people culture, we drink tea and first we go like this. this is the method. this is what we call wisdom.
all wisdom and method has to be inseparable to generate any aspect. that's purely compassion and wisdom and that's what we call it. we use that for the lay people. even the kids start that. generally speaking on our practice we do always compassion and love and inseparable. >> it is not only enough to be smart. you have to know how to use your wisdom. >> yes. >> book learning is not enough. >> no, no. human kindness is one of the most important characters. >> so the system of course, we know that the dali llama is the 14th and so he is part of this reincarnation and is a
reincarnation or personification personification. that's why when we go to tibetan shrine we see the image of dali llama not because he represents this wisdom and compassion used skillfully. >> right. >> manifestations of the compassion buddha. we respect him as a compassionate buddha and our main -- generally in tibet like i said before any aspect of family life has to start with the kindness. since you are a first born baby, the first word is going to be kindness.
even when the baby was in your womb for the nine months tibetan tibetans usually count the baby age from before it is born, from when it is conceived. so we have development there. a lot of the rituals with the baby so when the baby comes out the baby is already familiar. this is an atmosphere where mental development is very important and then high academics with reading and passing with your degree. usually tibetan is very down to earth level for your life. >> in tibet, it's a really buddhist culture. >> yes. >> this is just one aspect.
>> yes. >> it is very important, but only one aspect. >> right. it is very important. we have to have some holding where one principal is going to lead and who has a responsibility, being to hold the purulentage. all have a different school lineage and they hold that properly and go in the right direction. >> the right direction here is we are going to need to take a break. when we come back, you will share with us about your life and we thank you for your insight and commentary. hang on. we'll be right back.
thank you again for being on mosaic as a guest and thanks to ron for helping us understand something about the introduction. now we would like to know about you, sir. you are as we understand tibetan. take us back and share something about where you were born, where you grew up, and how you became recognized. >> i was born in 1954 in
accent ] >> he lost his emotional, a recognition, like a best friend. the little boy had no fear of the person. even the mother was surprised. this is the first meeting in the attendance. then i went back and talked to the family. they wanted to come back again. my parents were kind of denying like this is not going to be
but somehow the tibetan families have a full respect of tibetan buddhism culture. they have a happy side. they are very proud if a boy becomes high llama, it's very fortunate and lucky family. on the other hand i am only son for my family and really don't want to be away from them, it is like too much attachment to especially my mother having so much attachment to me. after three months mom came back and say now we went through this and you are one of the candidates. now we have to do the test. then they give me more tests.
you have to choose the items. you have mixed items. those small tests, i think i passed all. then the definitions and especially lesson from the dali llama and high llama they approved. >> it was that easy [ laughter ] >> then you went into a monastery and you have an image here. what are we looking at? >> this is one of the big monasteries of the yellow hat school. i grew up and the three
years, 1957 to '59 with 5000 monks there. this is reestablished in india, south india. >> i think we have another image of you as a somewhat younger man. >> yes. it was 1962. i was six years old. in 1961, home school. it is a very important memory in my life. this is very special for me because this is different for
young llamas all together. young llamas hope school llamas home school for three years. it is well known in a western country. an internationally well known still traveling and is part of the school. >> we have gotten you that far. when we come back, we will learn more about what happened when he came to america. stay with us.
>> it's time to leave tibet and go to schools in india and then you arrive in the united states. tell us what brought you here. then you lived for many years in berkeley. >> yes. in india tibetan life archive as a cultural advisor from 1975 to '80. during that time i worked as a part of joint project with smithsonian institute in washington, dc. that's why i came here. they invited me in 1979 for the first time into washington d.c., part of the project i was on for research. >> catch us up with how you got to the bay area. >> this is after 1980. i went back to india and then i came back in '83 to the bay
area. i found one tibetan who was there at the time. there were only 15 tibets at '83. since we had only a few tibetan tibetans, later we brought more here and now we have about 2000 tibetans here. i served three times as a board member. i was there for seven years back and forth. at the same time we do a lot of involvement with the tibetan preservation culture and new generations of tibetan americans we make sure the
tibetan culture is in our community and at the same time part time i did work as a barista. >> so when you came here, you had to go to work. >> yes. >> that was a new experience will ever yes. >> then you end up in elsarido. i think we have a slide of you as a barista. this is you as a younger monk. next is visual artist. and there you are. >> yes. >> you worked there how long? >> eight years. i had a great time. it was a lot of learning for me. we have a lot of good customers here and we had good time, bad times, stress times, happy times. >> instead of meditating and being head, i remember you
talking in the sacred text lecture that you liked to open but didn't like to close. >> i worked my eight years in albany. many young people, most of the people are young people. you have to wake up at 3:45 to get there. i never missed one day being late. i was very responsible. but i am not good for the closing. >> well so now you are living in santa barbara and visiting here and teaching. i think we have one more image here of you. you are in contact with the dali llama. i think what you are going do is you are going to offer us a tibetan prayer as we go out. in english what would the words be? >> this is generally tibetan
tradition and any aspect of what we do everyday. we dedicate. >> we better start. we have 30 seconds. >> dedicate for happiness. >> compassion to grow for all sense and beings and happiness and peace. >> we are blessed. thank you so much for being on mosaic. >> thank you very much. >> thank you. ,,,,
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