Dalai Lamas are important monks of the Gelug school, the newest school of Tibetan Buddhism which is nominally headed by the Ganden Tripas. They adopt and teach a very spiritual, peaceful, and simplistic way of living.
If you’re not learning from the Dalai Lama’s way of life, then you’re missing out, and to be honest, the world as a whole is missing out. We can learn so much about our minds, mastering our emotions, and becoming better individuals in general from the teachings of the Dalai Lama.
12 Spiritual Lessons from The Dalai Lama
These are 12 spiritual lessons we can all learn from the Dalai Lama:
1. Remember that sometimes not getting what you want is a wonderful stroke of luck
We regularly become frustrated when we’re unable to get the things we want, or when situations do not go our way. This causes us to become angry and upset, but it also causes us to dig deeper, to improve, to develop our skills further. Until we finally reach the level required to succeed.
And often, not getting what we wanted causes us to realize that we don’t truly want those things. We can end up realizing that we desire something else.
2. Sleep is the best meditation
Sometimes all we need is quality sleep. You can take all the measures you like in an effort to try and improve yourself, but if you’re not getting enough sleep, then your health is going to suffer. Not only in the mental sense, but physically as well.
3. True spirituality is a mental attitude you can practice at any time
Spirituality is all about connecting to something bigger than ourselves. And not just something, but all things and beings. You can have spiritual experiences wherever you are in the world, and whatever you’re doing.
It all depends on your mindset, and your attitude. There is no one place to have a spiritual experience. They can occur as long as you have the mental attitude.
4. Love is the absence of judgment
This is a lesson to stop being so quick to judge other people. If we’re able to gain the ability to stop judging others as soon as meet them, we give ourselves the chance to get to know them first.
Living without judgment spreads love, because we don’t give ourselves any reasons to write people off before we’ve even engaged with them, and the world can connect a whole lot more.
5. Where ignorance is our master, there is no possibility of real peace
Ignorance occurs for many reasons, often because of fear and the fear of change. Where ignorance exists, there will always be a divide among the people. Many will not want to listen to or accept the truth, and that leaves half of the world on one side, and half on the other.
Peace can never exist where ignorance does.
6. My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness.
With religion often causing conflict these days, perhaps things have become far more complicated than they need to be. The simplest, and easiest thing to do in life is to be kind, and kindness makes the world go around.
7. The goal is not to be better than the other man, but your previous self
Stop comparing yourself to other people and their success. Don’t set goals purely because they’re the goals of people around you. If you focus on what other people want and have, you will never be grateful for what you have, and you will never go after the things you want.
Always strive to be better than you were the day before. This is the only way to ensure you live a happy, rich and fulfilling life.
8. Share your knowledge. It is a way to achieve immortality
The lesson here is that knowledge always lives on, only if it is first shared from the holder. The knowledge you hold can live on forever through the people you teach it to, and the people they teach it to, and so on.
It’s your duty to pass on your knowledge to the next generation.
9. A disciplined mind leads to happiness, and an undisciplined mind leads to suffering
One’s level of discipline will determine whether the actions they carry out daily, are focused towards short term happiness or long term happiness.
If you have a disciplined mind, you will do what seems hard in the short term, but pays off in the long term. If you have an undisciplined mind, you will make quick and rash decisions to make yourself happy in the present moment. However, long term, you will suffer from misery.
10. Through violence, you may ‘solve’ one problem, but you sow the seeds for another
Violence is an endless cycle. When you win the battle, the war only becomes longer. And that’s why you can’t use violence to solve all the world’s problems; because as soon as you solve one, another pops up.
There’s always another way, start looking for it.
11. If you think you are too small to make a difference, try sleeping with a mosquito
This is one of my favorite lessons from the Dalai Lama. How many of us refrain from trying to make a difference in the world, because of how small we are in comparison?
A lot of us do this, and yet look at a single mosquito, and how much pain it can cause during the night. You’re never too small to be making a big difference.
12. I defeat my enemies when I make them my friends
If you really want to defeat your enemies, hurting them is not the only way to do it. You can defeat enemies by making them your friends. It might seem harder to do at the time, but there’s no reason not to try.
I advise everyone to read some of the Dali Lama’s books, if you are serious about mastering your mind and transforming your life. These lessons featured above only briefly touch upon the ways of the Dalai Lama.
If you want to learn more, check out this awesome morning ritual from the Dalai Lama!