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Buddhist Blessing for Hamburg

Jane Masumy, Hamburger Morgen Post, click here to download original German news in PDF format - The spiritual head of the Drukpa Order meets Ole von Beust and gives him a blessing scarf.

Does Buddhism makes you blissful? Already at 9 a.m. His Holiness chuckles with the mayor, as he had taken schnaps, pads Ole von Beust on the arms and clinks glasses with Mineralwater: "I rarely drink alcohol, it makes you crazy in your head." The Gyalwang Drukpa, representative of Tibetan Buddhism, on his first visit to Germany, is also good humored without the drink.

The 46-year-old is the spiritual head of the Drukpa Order which has more than 800 monasteries in the Himalayas (including Tibet, Bhutan, Nepal) and four million followers worldwide. On invitation, he is giving two days of teaching in the Hanseatic city.

"The Dalai Lama, my spiritual leader, told me that the Hamburg people are peace-loving. The people here are lucky, being born in a good country like Germany," says the spiritual head.

Hamburg people, who have not yet appreciated their good fortune, would perhaps need some blessing. "Let love and compassion rise to the sky, and fall down as beneficial rain," wrote the disciple of the Dalai Lama in the Golden Book at City Hall.

"I see the Dalai Lama three times a year, but I don't want to disturb him too often," says His Holiness, who wakes up each day at 4 o'clock and lives in a monastery in Nepal.

With von Beust, he talks about some serious issues, "Nature is on the verge of collapsing. We need to preserve it." And he gives the mayor a scarf representing a blessing and a healing incense. "Everyone may need a bit of healing - me too," says the Gyalwang Drukpa and then he smiles.

Today (at 10:00 and 14:00), he will be teaching at Curio-Haus (Rothenbaumchaussee 11) on the topic: "What is life worth? More information can be found at: