Opinions on the 14th Dalai Lama.


#1

I am not sure about the Dalai Lama, sometimes he seems like a genuine spiritual leader, but then he goes and says that modern science takes precedence over ancient religions. Am I the only one who does not trust him?


#2

Could you provide a quote and source for your claim that he said that modern science should take precedence over ancient religions?


#3

Why would I trust a Buddhist for religious instruction at all?


#4

dalailama.com/news.5.htm
boston.com/news/globe/ideas/articles/2003/09/14/the_buddha_of_suburbia/


#5

I suppose this quote from the first link is the quote in question:

If science proves some belief of Buddhism wrong, then Buddhism will have to change. In my view, science and Buddhism share a search for the truth and for understanding reality.

I think the key phrase here is “proves”. Science would find it hard to “prove” that things that supposedly lie outside of the energy-matter physical universe don’t exist. It’s not capable of proving things like that.

Having said that, if a scripture refers to things that exist in this physical universe, then science might indeed have something to say. In Tibetan Buddhism, there are scriptures that talk about the structure of the earth and of the universe; and modern science might “disprove” those elements of Tibetan Buddhism. But geology and cosmology aren’t the central teachings of those scriptures; similarly, the exact process of the appearance of living beings isn’t the central teaching of Genesis. The Dalai Lama is referring to the need to be able to distinguish, for instance, a particular Buddhist text’s incorporation of 14th-century ideas of the earth and cosmos, from that text’s central Buddhist message, which is outside of Western-scientific manipulation.


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