Buddhism 'the sweet dew to end suffering'
The first speech outside the mainland by the man Beijing recognises as the Panchen Lama was praised as 'well rounded' and representing mainstream Buddhist thinking by scholars yesterday.
The Panchen Lama, who is not recognised as such by the Dalai Lama, said man's greed was at the root of many woes afflicting humanity, and the solution to ending suffering is to turn to Buddhism.
The Tibetan religious leader called on followers to adopt and develop Dharma, a Buddhist theory revolving around laws of nature.
'Increasing greed in people's hearts has unbalanced the ecosystem, contaminated the environment, caused natural disasters, spread epidemics [and] induced wars ... endangering all sentient beings,' he said.
However, Dharma was the 'sweet dew that ends human suffering and is a way to promote world peace'.
The Panchen Lama, whose name is Gyaincain Norbu, was speaking to more than 4,000 monks and other followers at the World Buddhist Forum at the Coliseum in Hung Hom. The 22-year-old is recognised by Beijing as the 11th Panchen Lama of Tibetan Buddhism.
He cited 'science of the mind' as an answer to problems created by covetousness. 'It is a contemporary trend to put 'materialistic technology' ahead of the 'science of the mind',' he said. 'We should work towards an organic synergy of 'science of the mind' and 'materialistic technology' as it would be contributive to global peace, social harmony, and cultural development.'
The Venerable Sik Hin-hung, acting director of the University of Hong Kong's centre for Buddhist studies, said the speech was 'quite good and well rounded'.
The 'science of the mind' was a scientific way in Buddhism for followers to accumulate knowledge and wisdom, he said.
Dr William Ng Yau-nang, of Baptist University's department of religion, said the speech was in line with mainstream Buddhist thought and showed that the Panchen Lama was concerned about problems in the world. 'He's not totally detached from society,' he said.