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HH Karmapa speaks of environmental stewardship at Yale University

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On April 7, His Holiness Karmapa spoke about the role the heart plays in helping to protect the environment during his Chubb Fellowship Lecture on “Compassion in Action: Buddhism and the Environment” at Yale University.

On April 7, His Holiness Karmapa spoke about the role the heart plays in protecting the environment during his Chubb Fellowship Lecture on “Compassion in Action: Buddhism and the Environment” at Yale University in New Haven, Conneticut.

 

As a child living in a rural area in eastern Tibet, His Holiness the 17th Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje recalls a natural environment that was pristine and untarnished by modern development. It was there, he said, that he first experienced a feeling of “intimate connection” with and respect for the natural world.

“Where I was born, we regarded and experienced our environment as a living system, a living being: The mountains, the sources of water were all regarded as the dwelling places of what I would call holy spirits of various kinds,” the Karmapa told the packed audience in Woolsey Hall. “We therefore respected every aspect of the environment as part of a living system. We didn’t wash our clothes or even our hands in flowing water sources. We didn’t cast any kind of garbage or any kind of other pollutant into our fire in our hearth. We regarded the entire environment as innately sacred.”

Today, the Buddhist leader hopes to inspire others to see the interconnectedness of humans and their environment, and discussed that theme in the lecture on “Compassion in Action: Buddhism and the Environment.”

– From the Yale News article “Protecting the environment begins in the heart, says Buddhist leader”  Read the full article

For a report on HH Karmapa’s meeting with environmental activists at Yale, Read the full article