The communists sit in regional governments, Topolánek is trying to hunt down Bém, Bém is trying to hunt down Topolánek, Klaus has crossed all the boundaries and started calling the Irish “Lisbon” rebels dissidents. These are the not so merry, events and news of the past weeks in a nutshell. And then one man arrives and it suddenly seems that everything else is unimportant. His holiness the Dalai Lama, in his orange robe and peak, smiles, watches his discussion partners with calm eyes and listens carefully. He himself does not say much. He encourages spiritual peace without which there is no happiness and asks for dialogue and sympathy. It all looks very plain and simple on the surface and sceptics have a tendency to mocking this. But all this is being said by a man who has been living without a home for almost 50 years and all the time speaks on behalf of the Tibetans killed by the Chinese, supports human rights and undergoes a constant fight with Chinese propaganda and threats while not wanting any coups or revolutions. All he wants is a little bit of freedom and autonomy. He has also recalled recent heated discussions on the summer Olympic Games in Beijing. The fact that the Games took place in a country where personal freedom does not exist and where they have recently executed a scientist no longer causes surprise. There was not one sportsman among the thousands who would mention Tibet at least in passing. And despite the fact that the sportsmen certainly achieved breathtaking results nobody, except for the statistics tables will remember them in few months. It is, however, hard to forget such an achievement and strong and positive will as Dalai Lama displays. All it takes is to know one’s own mind and smile.
Translated with permission by the Prague Daily Monitor.