SANTA CLARA (CBS SF) —Â The Dalai Lama bought his spiritual message of compassion Monday to about 4,000 people inside an arena at Santa Clara University as about 100 protesters made noise outside.
The Dalai Lama, the 78-year-old Buddhist spiritual leader whose jovial manner and warm laugh amused the crowd, spoke in general terms about the subject of compassion and ethics in business at the universityâs Leavey Event Center.READ MORE: San Francisco DA Boudin Files Charges Against SF Sheriff’s Deputy Accused of Sexual Assault, Threats
âDepend on honesty and truth and you will be successful,â he said. âFeel with conviction. Faith must (be) inside.â
âGive more happiness to others, you get maximum happiness,â he said.
The spiritual leader was invited to be the keynote speaker for a program titled âBusiness, Ethics and Compassion,â with James Doty, director of the Center for Compassion and Altruism Research at Stanford University, and Dignity Health chief executive Lloyd Dean.
Doty introduced the Dalai Lama, praising his emphasis on fostering compassion in the workplace.
Silicon Valley technology companies offer their engineers employment perks such as free meals but many employees report seeking treatment for stress, anxiety and depression due to overwork, increasing health costs and lowering productivity, Doty said.
The Dalai Lama âhas been in the forefront of the neuroscience research related to the effects of meditation on the brain and the effects of compassion on the brain and this has stimulated a revolution in science and we are starting to see the reality, that being compassionate increases oneâs health and oneâs well-being and oneâs longevity,â Doty said.
The Dalai Lama, dressed in a traditional red Tibetan Buddhist robe, was at times difficult to understand between his thick accent and the amplified sound of his voice echoing in the arena.
He declined to comment specifically on the effects Silicon Valley tech firms have on their employees, but said that businesses should show more âempathy and concern.â
âA compassionate mind creates self confidence and strength,â he said. âAnxiety brings anger…Compassion brings inner peace.â
The Dalai Lama, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989 for his quest to liberate his native Tibet from China, said that China is âsupposed to be a socialist countryâ based on compassion but still has many poor people.
He also said that Indiaâwhere he livesââis a very religious nation and (has) a lot of corruptions.âREAD MORE: Los Gatos School Teacher Convicted Of Molesting Students Sued By Victim's Family
Of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, head of civil war-torn nation of Syria, where thousands of civilians have died in recent years, the Dalai Lama said, âI think he needs some compassion.â
âThis is just the beginning of the 21st century,â he said. âIt could, could be a more compassionate society.â
After the event, Maribel Alcazar, 20, a second year sociology major at Santa Clara, commended the Dalai Lama for raising awareness about morality at the workplace.
âHe touched on subjects you can relate to, how us as students could choose professions that donât compromise on our values,â Alcazar said.
John Muller, 58, an information technology architect from Chicago, said he thought the leaderâs message was âwonderfulâthe need for businesses to start emphasizing compassion as part of their business models.â
People in businesses are seen as âhuman capital,â Muller said. âI think that the influence of money is so great today that people get afraid for their livelihood, and voices like the Lamaâs get drowned out.â
A Tibetan Buddhist, Thupten Gyaltsen, 41, of Richmond, dressed in a red robe, said he was âvery excitedâ to be there and âmy important thing is the daily life, to think what you can do to help other people, try to balance your life, control your anger and make other people happy.â
A group of about 100 protesters gathered shortly before 8 a.m. across El Camino Real from the event center to protest what they say is the Dalai Lamaâs persecution and banning of Tibetan-exiles who make prayers to the Buddhist deity Dorje Shugden.
âHeâs enforcing a ban that affects millions of people,â said Len Foley, 46, spokesman for the group International Shugden Community.
âWe want the Dalai Lama to end this discrimination, to end this religious abuse,â Foley said.
The group held up signs reading âDalai Lama Stop Lyingâ and âDalai Lama Give Religious Freedomâ and chanted slogans through bullhorns.
The Dalai Lamaâs visit to Santa Clara ended three days of public events in the Bay Area. He also attended events in San Francisco on Saturday and Berkeley on Sunday.MORE NEWS: UPDATE: 'Non-Specific' Online Threat Shuts Down San Francisco State Campus
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