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News & Events for the Smith College Community
Events April 6, 2015

Smith to Join Amherst, UMass in Hosting His Holiness the Dalai Lama

Dalai Lama speaking

In collaboration with the Hadley-based Mind & Life Institute, Smith will join Amherst College and the University of Massachusetts Amherst in hosting a three-day visit by Tenzin Gyatso, His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet. Both Smith and Amherst College will host events with the Dalai Lama for their communities, and the visit will culminate in a public lecture at the Mullins Center at the University of Massachusetts Amherst on October 25, 2015.

Smith is finalizing details for an Oct. 23 community event. An all-campus announcement will be sent as soon as the event is confirmed and a registration system is in place.

The purpose of the visit, from October 23 to 25, 2015, is to focus on education, secular ethics and, specifically, an approach to incorporating care and compassion into the framework of education from K-12 through postgraduate education worldwide. This topic is one on which the Dalai Lama has been working with the Mind & Life Institute for several years, resulting in a global framework entitled Call to Care. (www.mindandlife.org/care). The visits to area colleges will include campus dialogues and presentations with faculty, national experts and students. His visit will culminate in a public presentation and forum at the Mullins Center open to students, faculty and staff of the Five Colleges as well as the general public.

“We are very honored to bring His Holiness the Dalai Lama to the area, and we are especially pleased to partner with our colleagues at Amherst, Smith and UMass on a topic that is so important to education at all levels, namely how to bring altruism and compassion more fully into the heart of our collective work,” said Dr. Arthur Zajonc, President of the Mind & Life Institute. Dr. Zajonc was an Amherst College professor of physics for more than 30 years prior to his leadership of the Mind & Life Institute. Mind & Life has been working on the Call to Care project with Smith College’s Department of Education as well as with global partners in Europe, Israel and Asia.

Since 1987 the Mind & Life Institute has been committed to building an integrative scientific understanding of the mind by fostering interdisciplinary, cross-cultural dialogue among science, philosophy, the humanities, and traditions that foster rigorous first-person contemplative inquiry. Insights from these dialogues and associated research can be used to help reduce suffering and to promote human flourishing, which are twin goals for the Mind & Life Institute.