His Holiness about COVID-19

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In order to give us his boundless support, His Holiness who has confined himself                           at Druk Amitabha, has sent this messages for all to read:

 

« What is taking place today is the result of our collective karma and its source is to be found in the lack of respect we have for our planet and all sentient beings, including animals.
This is a fact, and one should have no fear, but on the contrary trust in the Dharma, practice, pray to the Three Jewels, perform the practices of Tara, Guru Rinpoche, Riwo Sang Tcheu and the prayer by Thangtong Gyalpo, bearing in mind that we are doing so for the sake of all beings.
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Reckless human behavior has resulted in the destruction of nature and our poor animals. For thousands of years, nature has been begging us for kindness and reciprocity. Now that we have been forced to step down off our usual roles that pollute and destroy other beings, the world is suddenly able to begin healing again. Although we are all suffering immensely from this coronavirus, look how much we can learn about our impact on the world. This is an encouragement for all of us to contemplate and give thanks to nature, to animals, and to the humbling lessons we can learn from this health crisis.

I become speechless when I think of this coronarvirus. True teachings of Lord Buddha come at a practical level. Now, it’s time to practise renunciation and also it’s time to generate the understanding of impermanence, no matter who you are and what sort of lifestyle you may have. No choice! We always think about ourselves as being superior over everything, especially all the poor animals. It’s no longer reality anymore. Our negative actions that harm animals have created the conditions for illness and harm to our own bodies. Now, it’s time to contemplate on the teachings of nature and not just the Buddha. It’s time for us to respect the law of nature and the right of all beings! It’s never too late unless we are suicidal by nature.
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We always go around the world to introduce people to the interdependent nature of our existence and how we should respect co-existence with nature, by giving oral teachings and by setting examples of the humanitarian activities of Live to Love. But very few have bothered to listen. Now the COVID-19 pandemic has put the fear of death in all of us – from heads of states to the poor homeless people on the streets. Death is a natural process of life, but hardly anyone feared it as much as they do now during the panic caused by COVID-19.

Following the cancellation of international flights and the closure of factories in China, our pollution levels have dropped. Dolphins are returning to the coasts of Italy after the closure of cruise ships, swans are appearing in the canals that were once populated by gondolas. In Singapore, otters are roaming freely. These are just a few examples that show us how human greed has disrupted the natural balance of coexistence between nature and humans, and how nature is now reclaiming its space.

The lesson we can learn from the COVID-19 pandemic is to respect the law of nature and the philosophy of interdependence. It gives us – people of all political hues, creeds and colour – an opportunity to come together and join hands. Not only to fight this pandemic, but to also restore the natural order for a better, safer, and healthier future for the coming generations.

 

16.04.2020

While we trace the origins of Covid-19 to the animal markets, we must also remember that the virus itself was born from human acts of destruction. Devastation of natural resources, diminishing wild lands, poaching, and smuggling have all created the conditions for the virus to be born, take hold in animals, and ultimately be passed on to humans. To prevent future pandemics, we must contemplate how to preserve and cherish our earth and a whole.

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28.04.2020

This experience that we are going through with the pandemic is not just one problem that will be over soon. It is just the beginning, and we must make wiser decisions. While all these regions are experiencing the pandemic differently for many reasons, there is also an element of ‘collective karma.’ When we harm animals and nature for example, it creates conditions for our own harm and sickness. Now we are in a situation where our karma is forcing us to give the world a little rest after all these years of abuse. This is like a small test for all of us, whether we are rich or poor, powerful or simple, educated or not, telling us not to abuse or bully other beings.

We need to understand that we are all part of one family with the planet and its beings. Abusive and arrogant behavior, like factory farming and torture of animals, has led to so many fatal viruses and diseases for humans. But if we choose to behave well and kindly, this leads to a happier life, a healthier environment, and conditions for speedier recoveries for things like this virus. This is the kind of karma we should strive for throughout our lives.

After this coronavirus pandemic ends, we don’t want to go back to the same style of living where we bully, harm, and excessively eat animals while lying to ourselves. This pandemic is only a beginning for us, and a very good opportunity for us to change our harmful behaviours for a better future.

 

29.04.2020

This morning some of my friends asked me the same question again, “How is everything with you all in Nepal?” This is because they are quite concerned and very worried about me and my people here in Kathmandu. Perhaps they can’t believe that the situation in Nepal in general, and Kathmandu in particular, isn’t so bad during this period of global COVID-19 pandemic.

This particular friend said that she is very surprised and very happy that Nepal government could control and contain the pandemic crisis so well. I told her that it may be partially due to the steps taken by the government, but partially it is just the result of collective Karma. I really believe so. Otherwise, how can one explain why Kathmandu is in a better position? Why Italy is so bad and London as well? Now New York is like a hell. Why Wuhan needs to suffer that much? All these questions can never be answered truthfully. There may be answers based on on-going scientific studies, some may be political answers, some are racists and some based on religions. I only believe in Karma. This is happening because nature needs a little bit of rest to heal. Karmic reactions can provide some succour to the world. Our cyclic existence is the result of Karma.

Karma to me is the outcome of people’s behaviour, people’s mentality and people’s lifestyle. No matter what sort of luxurious lifestyle you may have, no matter how rich you are or your country is, no matter how successful you or your country is – regardless of all these conditions. If you deserve to be sick, you will be infected. This is quite visible from how this coronavirus works. It is as though this pandemic has a mind of its own – where to go, how to go, and whom to attack. It seems that the virus is attacking those countries whose people are educated, arrogant and full of themselves, caring less for nature and social values. Such negative behaviours and lifestyles cause the collective karma resulting in all the unnecessary problems, like the current pandemic, the society as a whole has to face it.

While it is important that at the individual level, we follow rules such as social distancing, washing hands, and wearing face masks but more importantly we need to respect the law of karma, that is, follow harmless behaviours and engage in helpful day-to-day activities. This will definitely help us to prevent recurrence of the pandemic.

This message should neither be seen as a political nor religious message. It’s just my observation of the ground reality.

 

~ The Gyalwang Drukpa
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His Holiness highly recommends to strictly abide by the confinement instructions implemented by our respective governments. We must be very disciplined.
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März 25, 2020 • Posted in: Aktuelles