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24 January 2011

The Dalai Lama again

When I previously posted about the Dalai Lama, I kind of assumed the vacuity of his tweet was an unfortunate one-off. But someone else has retweeted another, similar, fortune-cookie motto, and so I've gone to the source. Here's a selection of some of his wisdom.
With the realization of ones own potential and self-confidence in ones ability, one can build a better world.
Because our own human existence is so dependent on the help of others our need for love lies at the very foundation of our existence.
We need a genuine sense of responsibility and a sincere concern for the welfare of others.
By going beyond your own problems and taking care of others, you gain inner strength, self-confidence, courage, and a greater sense of calm.
 There's one of these every day, eagerly (I assume) read by 1.25 million followers, and frequently retweeted.

It feels a bit like kicking a puppy to criticise. Obviously these are worthy sentiments, and even if you can question the truth or even the meaningfulness of some ("If we develop a good heart, then whether the field is science, agriculture or politics, since motivation is important these will all improve") you can't help hoping they're true and that people become better from reading them.

But it's all so unbelievably trite and unproblematic. The worrying thing is that the Dalai Lama's thoughts fit so well into the 140 character limit. Of all the things Twitter does extremely well, it really doesn't work as a guide to big moral questions.

1 comment :

The Living Dad said...

I have to agree. I'd been troubled by the dreary triteness of what the Dalai Lama has to say, or at least tweet for a while. I struggle to believe that anyone takes it seriously.

I'm disappointed. I expected a smidgen of wisdom. Or even character. It's just dry platitudes of little weight or meaning.

He's certainly no Chris Powell...