Redding Center Sponsors Dalai Lama Visit To WestConn

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His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet is coming to Western Connecticut State University in Danbury next month.
His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet is coming to Western Connecticut State University in Danbury next month. Photo Credit: Flickr user abhikrama

DANBURY, Conn. – His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet will present talks Oct. 18 and 19 at Western Connecticut State University in Danbury, the college announced this week.

The Dalai Lama’s visit – which culminates a nearly two-year initiative to bring him to WestConn – is made in conjunction with Do Ngak Kunphen Ling, the Tibetan Buddhist Center for Universal Peace in Redding.

According to WestConn, the Dalai Lama will speak at public forums to be held from 1:30 to 3 p.m. Oct. 18, and from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Oct. 19. Both appearances will be in the Feldman Arena in the O’Neill Center on the Westside campus, 43 Lake Ave. Ext.

The events will be open to the public, and tickets will go on sale soon.

“In forging friendships that will bring His Holiness the Dalai Lama to our university, we have made many friends with our new colleagues from DNKL, and from the Office of Tibet,” WCSU President James W. Schmotter said in a statement. “We know that His Holiness will become a new friend as well when he comes to see us at the university.”

DNKL officials and two WCSU faculty members — Dr. John Briggs, professor of writing, linguistics and creative process, and Eric Lewis, professor of music and music education — were instrumental in bringing the Dalai Lama to WestConn.

“We have been working with the university to develop this project for the past year-and-a-half, and we appreciate the university’s help and support in this effort to arrange for His Holiness’s visit to the community,” Janine Coover, vice president and events coordinator at DNKL, said in a statement. “We at DNKL are very excited about working together with the university for the visit of His Holiness and our future endeavors with WCSU.”

The Dalai Lama is the spiritual leader of Tibet and has lived in exile since 1959 in the northern Indian city of Dharamsala, seat of the Tibetan political administration in exile, according to the university.

Born in 1935 to a farming family in northeastern Tibet, he was recognized at the age of 3 as the 14th Dalai Lama and completed his monastic education in Tibet before going into exile after the 1959 Chinese suppression of a Tibetan uprising.

Over more than half a century, the Dalai Lama has visited more than 60 countries on six continents, meeting with political and religious leaders, addressing the United Nations, and delivering teachings and talks at colleges and other public forums worldwide.

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