Saturday, October 3, 2015

The Dalai Lama Had A Mother

Of course he did. 
Biologically, the Dalai Lama, the spiritual leader of the Tibetan people, originated in the womb. Once I embraced the idea that The Dalai Lama was once an embryo, I became fascinated with the thought:
Who was the woman that was his mother? 
What kind of woman can produce a son who is so radiant, wise and spiritual that he changes the world through his mere existence
What maternal skills did she possess to pass these gifts down to her biological child, born to her in 1935 in northern Tibet? 
If the Dalai Lama's mother, wife of a farmer, could give the world such a gift in the way of this transformational son, what life-changers, spiritual leaders, or world leaders are other mothers capable of raising, if they had the resources available to them? 


What would Sylvia's only son (Left), one of seven children, do with his innate sweetness and gentle spirit if he were allowed to dream his perfect life into existence? If his mother could provide proper nutrition, stimulating education, and adequate shelter, could he be a village leader; a man of integrity who might lead people to do the correct thing for the well-being of the community? Would he guide his politically unstable country to a place of diplomatic leadership? Or more simply, if William were allowed to access adequate higher education, perhaps he would become financially self-sufficient and raise children who had their basic needs met, thus creating a family built on a solid foundation.


Meet Adonias, his brothers Pablo and Alejundro (right). If their mother were free of her daily concerns over her five children's health, educational and nutritional needs, how would she parent? The stress of unrelenting poverty robs the spirit of a mother and leaves little emotional or physical reserve for dealing with the many needs of her children. 
The Dalai Lama, and indeed the majority of the  spiritual leaders of the world, hold steadfast to the basic tenants of the promotion of basic human values, happiness, and a culture of peace. There is nothing so profound in these belief systems that any child who grows to be a man under the guidance of a sustained mother could not carry forward into his family, community and country; given the proper support system. 
The World Bank reports that almost 60% of rural northern Guatemalans live below the poverty line, which is defined as the ability to purchase a basket of food. Those of us working in these areas would argue that the actual statistics are much higher, especially in the population of widows we serve. The lack of nourishment, physically and otherwise, rob this current generation of the ability to change the future of Guatemala in any significant way. 


The world is a poorer place for the loss of this potential.
How many life-changers, spiritual or community leaders and future fathers are languishing within the bodies of nutritionally and emotionally deprived children in developing countries? The number is impossible to calculate. 
Even one is too many.