【中国日报专访】索达吉堪布:我希望在余生中,尽力向年轻人传讲佛法

向世界青年递出手

——中国日报对索达吉上师的专访

13日,香港,藏传佛教学者索达吉堪布返回旅馆时,是晚上八点。

他刚刚在国际展览馆为超过11000人传授了两天的佛法。

“法”在佛教里意味着宇宙的法则和规律,也就是佛陀所宣讲的内容。它其实是一种心灵教育。

索达吉堪布把自己的一生都献给了传法。“大约70-80%的听众是佛教徒,剩下的是既有信仰其他宗教的,也有无信仰的人。”

52岁的堪布用一种带着浓重口音的普通话低沉地说到。他左手的大拇指慢慢地捻着自己的念珠,整个采访期间一直没有停。索达吉堪布,来自于中国西南部四川省甘孜州的大山之中,走遍了全球传讲佛法。他第一次的国外之旅是1993年去美国。从那时开始,他就陆续被世界各地邀请讲学,面对的主要是大学师生。

他的演讲丰富多彩,但总是包含某种形式的心灵教育。 他说:“由于缺乏心灵教育,引发了不公平不安全等许多问题,这些问题在佛教中可以找到解决方法。

“这是我演讲的主要内容。”“精神的发展跟不上物质生活的增长之路。”他补充道,并说这是许多国家共同面临的问题。

他回忆说曾有人问他对恐怖主义的看法。“我研究过伊斯兰教。我发现它的教义并不会给世界带来危害,但有些人却以宗教的名义把它操控了。”堪布继续说道。

2015年,他访问了纳米比亚,南非和莱索托。在那里他告诉年轻人应如何以正确的态度面对苦难。他去了孤儿院,近距离地看到了饥荒。

他回忆到自己当时如何被告知,由于艾滋病和疟疾,纳米比亚人的平均寿命只有37-42岁。而年轻人,包括大学毕业生找不到工作也是一个问题。

“当时的感觉是,当地人对未来几乎不抱什么希望,”他说,“因此,我演讲的主题是永远不要失去信心……当地人其实非常聪明而且精力充沛。如何激发他们的潜力非常值得考虑。”

堪布在16岁上小学之前,一直是一个放牛娃,几乎没接受过任何正规教育。小学毕业后他进入当地的初中和师范学校继续学习。接下来他面临一个选择:是在家乡当一名教师还是选择一种完全不同的专学佛法的生活。他说自己在很小的时候就对宗教有一种强烈的信心。

23岁时,索达吉来到四川喇荣佛学院求学,成为晋美彭措堪布的一名学生。晋美彭措堪布是这个佛学院的创建者,被公认为是藏传佛教一名具有影响力的上师。经过闻思修和讲辩著的训练,索达吉很快成为一名堪布。

所谓堪布是一种对经过高级修行的佛教高等僧侣授予的头衔。索达吉堪布谈到,去过世界上这么多国家,他发现近年各个地区接受藏传佛教的人越来越多,增长非常快,特别是年轻人和知识分子。2015年末,他在英国剑桥大学做了一场演讲,参加的人当中有许多教师,学生和信徒。

他指出国外大学有许多人对藏传佛教非常熟悉,包括很专业的宗教术语,都很清楚。“有些人对藏传佛教的理论研究得非常深,提出的问题很有深度。

“我很惊讶,他们的水平和我所在寺院(在四川)里那些出家人已经差不多。”堪布说西方很多人发现学习藏传佛教很有意义,因为它是理性的宗教,可以帮助我们训练心灵达到内在的和平。讲座并不是索达吉堪布弘法的唯一途径。他用中文写了好几本书,介绍佛教思想。

这些书在互联网上都能找到。他还有一个英文网站,里面用简单的语言解释佛教思想。他的新浪微博(相当中文推特)的粉丝达到200多万。

谈到未来时,索达吉希望在自己的余生中,尽力向年轻人传讲佛法。

他说:“我觉得人类非常需要心灵的训练,”他希望更多的90后和00后通过系统的训练成为“真正具有智慧的人”。

原文链接:http://usa.chinadaily.com.cn/epaper/2016-01/25/content_23236189.htm?bsh_bid=981661599&from=timeline&isappinstalled=0

原文如下:

Reaching out to the world’s youth

By Zhang Haizhou In Hong Kong(China Daily USA)

It was already 8 pm on Jan 3 when Sodargye, a Tibetan Buddhist scholar, returned to his hotel from AsiaWorld-Expo in Hong Kong, where he had just finished two days of delivering dharma lectures to more than 11,000 people.

Dharma – cosmic law and order in Buddhism – is applied to the teachings of Buddha and is the form of spiritual education to which Sodargye has dedicated his life.

“Between 70 and 80 percent of the audience were Buddhists, with some from other religions, and some without a religion,” the 52-year-old says in a low voice in heavily accented Mandarin. His left thumb moved slowly along his prayer beads throughout the interview.

Sodargye, from the mountainous Garze county in Southwest China’s Sichuan province, has traveled the globe to talk about dharma. His first trip abroad was to the United States in 1993. Since then, he has been invited to talk all over the world, mainly to university students and faculties.

His speeches vary, but they always include some sort of spiritual education.

“The lack of a spiritual education has led to problems of unfairness and insecurity, and some solutions can be found in Buddhism. This is the theme of my talks,” he says.

“Development of the spirit cannot match the pace of the growth of material life,” he adds, saying that this is a common issue in many countries.

He recalls that he was once asked for his views on terrorism and responded that he supports Islam.

“I’ve studied Islam, and its doctrine does not bring any harm to the world,” Sodargye says. “It has been manipulated by some people in the name of religion.”

In 2015, he visited Namibia, South Africa and Lesotho, where he offered advice to young people on how to face hardship with the right attitude. He visited orphanages and saw famine up close.

He recalls how he was told that the average life expectancy in Namibia is just 37 to 42 because of HIV and malaria. A lack of jobs for young people, including university graduates, is also a problem.

“The feeling is that local people have little hope for the future,” he says. “So the theme of my lecture was never lose confidence … The locals are actually very intelligent and energetic. It’s worth considering how to boost their potential.”

A former cowherd, Sodargye had little formal education until the age of 16, when he entered elementary school. He then studied in secondary school and a normal college, both locally.

Later, he was faced with a choice – to work as a teacher in his hometown or a vastly different life of studying Buddhism.

He says he had a strong interest in the religion from a young age.

When he was 23, Sodargye went to study at the Larung Gar Buddhist Institute in Sichuan and became a student of its founder, Jigme Phuntsok, who is considered an influential Tibetan Buddhist master.

Through learning, debating and writing, Sodargye soon became a khenpo, the title given to senior Buddhist monks with high discipline.

Having traveled across the world, Sodargye says acceptance of Tibetan Buddhism has been growing rapidly in recent years, especially among younger generations and intellectuals. His lecture at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom in late 2015 was attended by dozens of faculty members, fellows and students.

He points out that many people in overseas universities and colleges are familiar with Tibetan Buddhism, including some of the religion’s terminologies.

“Some even do very deep research on the theories of Tibetan Buddhism and have raised very thoughtful questions. I was amazed, feeling they are on the same level with monks in my temple (in Sichuan).”

Sodargye says many in the West find it meaningful to study Tibetan Buddhism, as it is a relatively logical religion that can help people train their spirit to reach inner peace.

Giving lectures is not the only way Sodargye popularizes his religion.

He has written several books on Buddhist philosophy in Chinese and is active on the Internet.

 

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Sodargye has won a huge number of fans through his books and lectures about Tibetan Buddhism.Provided To China Daily

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He has a website in English where he explains Buddhist philosophy in simple terms, while his blog on Sina Weibo, the Chinese equivalent of Twitter, has more than 2 million followers.

Speaking about the future, Sodargye aims to spend the rest of his life teaching Buddhism to young people.

“I feel that human beings need spiritual training badly,” he says, adding that he hopes more people born in the 1990s and 2000s become “truly intelligent people” through systematic training.