I was invited yesterday for a private event held at Kualoa State Park on Oahu, where His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet blessed the Polynesian Voyaging Society’s Hokule’a canoe and then answered questions for invited media folks in Hawaii.
His Holiness arrived at Kualoa Park today for a private blessing ceremony for the Hokule’a. As he was escorted to the blessing by Nainoa Thompson and John DeFries, the Dalai Lama was greeted by the sound of conch shells and chants. The Dalai Lama’s earth blessing led into the consecration of the Hokule’a. At the end of the ceremony, the Dalai Lama boarded the Hokule’a with his entourage. The Dalai Lama’s gift of a scarf was tied to the mast, drawing a close to the poignant blessing. (photos courtesy of Pilars of Peace)
After His Holiness did the blessing, he moved over to a tent where His Holiness fielded questions from the media that was invited… I almost tripped moving to my seat knowing he was coming so close to me!
He spent about 30 minutes talking to reporters and I just kind of was stunned in amazement that I was sitting right across from him!
Here are some of the pictures I took during the question and answer period with His Holiness (Click for larger view):
Here is His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet’s answer to a couple of the questions asked:
And a more serious question regarding the military presence here in the State of Hawaii:
After the question and answer session… His Holiness actually held my hand for about five seconds!!!! I still haven’t washed my hand!
ABOUT HIS HOLINESS THE DALAI LAMA
His Holiness the Dalai Lama was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his nonviolent struggle for Tibet and received the U.S. Congressional Gold Medal in recognition of his “many enduring and outstanding contributions to peace, nonviolence, human rights and religious understanding.” He recently won the 2012 Templeton Prize for his work in spiritually relevant scientific research. Author of more than 72 books and the recipient of numerous awards and honorary doctorates, His Holiness describes himself as a simple Buddhist monk. For more information about the Dalai Lama, please visit: www.dalailama.com.
ABOUT THE HAWAI’I COMMUNITY FOUNDATION
With 95 years of community service, the Hawai’i Community Foundation is the leading philanthropic institution in the state. The Foundation is a steward of more than 600 funds, including more than 160 scholarship funds, created by donors who desire to transform lives and improve communities. In 2011, more than $43 million in grants and contracts were distributed statewide. The Foundation also serves as a resource on community issues and trends in the nonprofit sector. Visit www.hawaiicommunityfoundation.org for more information.
ABOUT PIERRE AND PAM OMIDYAR
Active philanthropists who are guided by their belief that people are inherently capable and basically good, Pierre and Pam Omidyar have committed more than $1 billion to help individuals improve their lives and ignite change across a variety of sectors and geographies. The Omidyars received the 2011 Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy in recognition of the lasting impact of their work and generosity. In 2009, Pierre and Pam made an historic $50 million commitment to the Hawai’i Community Foundation to establish the Omidyar ‘Ohana Fund, which is being used to launch several community initiatives. To learn more about the Omidyars’ commitment to Hawai’i and ongoing philanthropic interests around the world, go to www.pillarsofpeacehawaii.org/hosts.
Filed under: aloha, Announcements, Environment, Hawaii, Hawaiian, Oahu, Something New?, Unexplained Phenomenon Tagged: | 14th Dalai Lama, Dalai Lama, Damon Tucker, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Hokule'a Blessing, Nainoa Thompson, Polynesian Voyaging Society