The Dalai Lama Just Told the World to Stop Praying for Paris


By Carey Wedler at


In the Western world, the Dalai Lama is best known for promoting consciousness, self-evolution, and inner peace. Though he is an outspoken activist for freedom in his native country, Tibet, he rarely speaks on global political affairs. In the wake of the Paris terrorist attacks, however, the Buddhist leader shared an astute and vital perspective on the state of the world—one reached through spiritual beliefs rooted in peace and humanity.

Asked about Friday’s terrorist attacks during an interview with German broadcaster Deutsche Welle, the Dalai Lama downplayed the power of pleading with deities. “We cannot solve this problem only through prayers,” he said, possibly referencing worldwide calls to #PrayForParis. “I am a Buddhist and I believe in praying. But humans have created this problem, and now we are asking God to solve it. It is illogical. God would say, solve it yourself because you created it in the first place.”

Noting that people want to live peaceful lives, he dismissed Friday’s terrorist attacks as “short-sighted,” suggesting this contributes to many suicide bombings. Though the Dalai Lama did not further analyze the causes of last week’s attacks, he acknowledged the problem of chronic aggression around the world.

The twentieth century was a violent one, and more than 200 million people died due to wars and other conflicts. We now see a spillover of the previous century’s bloodshed in this century,” he said. One estimate suggests his figures are low and that governments killed over 250 million of their own people alone last century.

When the interviewer suggested his sentiments of peace, love, and compassion have fallen on deaf ears around the world, the Dalai Lama declined to entertain a pessimistic view. “I disagree. I think that only a small percentage of people subscribe to the violent discourse,” he said. “We are human beings and there is no basis or justification for killing others. If you consider others as brothers and sisters and respect their rights, then there is no room for violence.”

Rather than dwell on the small minority of violent instigators, the Dalai Lama focused on solutions. “If we emphasize more on nonviolence and harmony, we can herald a new beginning,” he said. He also cautioned against failing to work toward this ideal: “Unless we make serious attempts to achieve peace, we will continue to see a replay of the mayhem humanity experienced in the 20th century.”

The Tibetan native was forced to flee his homeland amid a 1959 uprising against the Chinese government, which invaded the region in 1950. He still lives in exile in India but has long been an advocate for peaceful resolution of the conflict—even as Chinese authorities have attempted to replace him with a “communist-approved alternative.” Discussing the Tibet-China conflict, he maintained his view that “we are living in the 21st century and all conflicts must be resolved through dialogue, not by force.”

Living by his own words, he expressed that if Tibetans decide they longer want his leadership, he will step aside. “In 2011, I officially announced that it was up to the Tibetans if they wanted to keep the institution of the Dalai Lama,” he said. “If the people think that this institution is no longer relevant, it should be abolished. I am no more involved in political matters. I am only concerned about Tibet’s well-being.”

In spite of his distance from politics, he continued to emphasize the importance of peace to the survival of humanity:

We need a systematic approach to foster humanistic values, of oneness and harmony. If we start doing it now, there is hope that this century will be different from the previous one. It is in everybody’s interest. So let us work for peace within our families and society, and not expect help from God, Buddha or the governments.

He also echoed an inclusive sentiment the world undoubtedly needs to hear, saying “the problems that we are facing today are the result of superficial differences over religious faiths and nationalities. We are one people.”

This article (The Dalai Lama Just Told the World to Stop Praying for Paris) is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Carey Wedler and Anti-Media Radio airs weeknights at 11pm Eastern/8pm Pacific. Image credit: Yancho Sabev. If you spot a typo, email[email protected].


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  1. Given that the Dalai Lama has already said that “religion is no longer adequate” I am not surprised by his latest statement. Even in WikiLeaks Cables it shows that the CIA were using him to marginalise religion. But to tell Christians and Muslims to stop praying to God, that is a truly insane statement.

    • Well it’s not like praying to all the gods that people pray to has helped at all…. at least he’s being pragmatic about it. Quit begging for peace from some “MAN IN THE SKY” and create peace, starting from within… that is totally in line with Buddhist teachings and, I mean, he is Buddhist…

    • humans have always depended on God. to state that we should solve our problems on our own is typical Buddhist. Christian and Muslim and Jewish teaching say that God enjoys it when humans ask for his help.. humans don’t do that often. Buddha gained enlightenment by fighting his demons himself, without help of God. He gained a place in heaven for that, a low place. Stop praying and God will turn away. Buddah didn’t understand much about this concept. His words were: humans are the last resort of humans.. sounds like someone who has given up every hope of the existence of God.

    • If you want to prey maybe you should prey for every person dying and suffering on this planet instead of just preying for who the media tells you to.. Now because of a magic Syrian passport that survived a suicide bomber exploding, France is bombing the fuck out of Syria and dropping bombs on innocent families and little kids. I have seen the footage.

    • The Lord Jesus tells us to pray without ceasing . I,as well as most understand wanting peace.This guy calls himself “His holiness”! REALLY ? Over the years,what I have read about all the Dali Lama they take Scripture turn and twist it a bit,then take credit for it and call it his own.Also what has he or his followers done for victims of these murders?Franklin Grahams team of chaplains etc…are over in Paris!

  2. This is true, we need to do something, if there such a powerful entity it would probably just be rid of the humans once and for all, as I would seeing the state of my beloved planet. The Dalai Lama in my books is ahead in the race to solve world problems that we created, and the Pope is second only to the Dalai Lama. We really need to listen to them and not just hear them, and say to yourself, that is a great ideology, them turn on the TV and forget it happened, and start watching the horrors going on and wonder why everything isn’t good now… We need to make example of what kind of world we want to live in, and this shit is not working.

    • Yeah you would know what God would or wouldn’t be thinking, an insect like you who hates the human race so much that he assumes a moral being would exterminate us instead if transforming us and elevating us.

      You are less than a piece of bacteria or virus compared to a being that is of infinite intelligence and capacity. A piece, not even a whole microbe, less than a ribosome.

      Screw this authors infantile views on “dieties” his contempt for other peoples beliefs mirrors that of Mao and Stalin.

      Shame on anonymous for promoting this kind of intolerant self-righteous garbage; make you wonder about anonymous’s agenda.

      • Lol. Let me guess you are a bible thumper.
        Read it again he wasn’t saying you shouldn’t believe in your God. He is saying its up to us to make this world better not your make believe God.

  3. HE SAID “Rather than dwell on the small minority of violent instigators, the Dalai Lama focused on solutions. If we emphasize more on nonviolence and harmony”… but if all they want to do is kill you…. where do you go then? you can’t negotiate with something that hates you….

  4. “I am a Buddhist and I believe in praying. But humans have created this problem, and now we are asking God to solve it. It is illogical. God would say, solve it yourself because you created it in the first place.”

    I can understand what he means, or at least present my interpretation. One of the reasons for rising atheism has invariably been given as the growing injustice and events of atrocities around the world, that invalidate the presence of a god, a ‘saviour’; as most people consider the entity to be omniscient, omnipresent, just. People sometimes tend to blame their problems on god, thus presenting a distorted image of an entity whose existence isn’t verified, about whom we know nothing about other than the over-simplified, obvious answers provided by religion that is distorted and torn itself. It should be clear by now that most of our problems are self-constructed, direct results of our actions. And I think this is a better way to approach our problems, deal with them, by taking responsibility on ourselves and never having to blame anyone or anything.

  5. You people understand that humans HAVE NOT always had religion, nor is ‘god’ real, right? Likewise, ‘god’ is not required to live a good life and treat others with kindness, respect and dignity, right? And that the key to peace is equality, a key not held by ‘god’ or religion in any way shape or form, right?
    *calls parents to thank them AGAIN for not saddling mind with disease of religious dogma*

  6. the metaphysical motorcade
    comes into sight
    bearing the latest
    greatest master fresh
    from his latest
    incarnation and his
    blessed favorite celebrities
    path bedecked with
    streamers and bunting
    gaily coloured blowing
    in the breeze
    the buzzing crowds
    overblown with piety
    impatient with emotion
    expecting the light
    expecting the rush
    expecting the flash
    expecting always
    always expecting
    demanding from
    a position of
    assumed entitlement
    but with such
    palpable humility while
    insisting that their
    very presence and
    solemn demeanor
    rightly qualifies them
    to enter the
    gardens of paradise

  7. it is wise for people who care and are not so skilled t follow experienced perspectiveness, consciousness and expertise… everyone can just improve their ideologies by earing the right opinions that exist, and close or best available… 😀


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