The Dalai Lama was honored today with International Freedom Conductor Award

Posted by Zotta Rendevouz

October 20, 2010, by the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, in Southwest Ohio, with the presentation of the "International Freedom Conductor Award". The Dalai Lama, exiled Tibetan spiritual leader, donated the prize of $25,000 that came with his award, back to the Duke Energy Convention Center. There were nearly 2,000 people packed in the center. The National Underground Railroad Freedom Center gives the award to those who are "conspicuous and effective champions of freedom."

CEO and President of the center, Donald W. Murphy, said the Dalai Lama was specifically chosen because of his tireless efforts on behalf of Tibet and his life-long advocacy of freedom and peace for all people.

In his speech at the luncheon, he mentioned that he was moved by the current exhibition on display at the Freedom Center, Invisible: Slavery Today. The Dalai Lama stated more than once that it was important for the United States to remain a strong leader, keep up its "self-confidence" and focus on the future. He told the audience that he was a Marxist when it came to economics.

The Dalai Lama is the fourteenth leader in a line of Buddhist spiritual and political leaders of Tibet. Buddhists are followers of Gautama Buddha (c.563-c.483 B.C.E.), who believed the problems in this life can be overcome through moral and mental discipline. He fled his country and took safety in India in 1959 during the revolt against Chinese control of Tibet. Since that time, while still in exile (forced or voluntary absence from one's country), he has promoted Tibetan religious and cultural traditions.