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Dalai Lama tells Legislature to be compassionate

Spiritual leader praises democracy

MADISON, Wis. - His Holiness the Dalai Lama began his 9th visit to Wisconsin by speaking to elected leaders.

He spoke of transparency and living a successful life to members of the Wisconsin State Legislature and other state officials in a brief speech in the Assembly Chamber Tuesday afternoon. 

"Here in this chamber every person in Wisconsin is represented," said Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Burlington, in his introduction.  "As you speak to us today you are speaking to the entire state of Wisconsin."

The spiritual leader said he was honored to be speaking to leaders in a democratic nation, but added that whether politician or person on the street, he believed everyone was the same.

"Six billion human beings are basically the same, mentally, emotionally and physically," said the Dalai Lama. 

"More important, everyone want happy successful life.  And the chosen people here are very much concerned about a successful life.  At least the next election. ...Ultimately, the source of a successful life is not money, not power, but inner value. If you have inner value, that means more sense of others well-being."

That message of valuing others was not lost in the chamber, as Democrats and Republicans try to mend fences.

Dalai Lama tells Legislature to be compassionate

"This session we're trying to work together better on both sides of the aisle," said Rep. Dean Kaufert, R-Neenah.  "We're trying to understand each other a little bit better, work together, and be better stewards to each other.  I think he brings that message and it's probably good to reinforce that with republicans and democrats once in a while."

The Dalai Lama invited lawmakers to "watch him from time to time" to hear more about his message of honoring human value.

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