Posted on May 14th, 2012

By Walter Jayawardhana

The Dalai Lama who received 1.1 million Pounds , Templeton Prize money gave the greater portion of it to Save the Children Fund in India and the balance for science, including teaching science for young Tibetan Buddhist monks.

The Templton Prize is the world’s biggest annual award a person could receive and the Dalai Lama was awarded this year’s award for his contribution to “affirming life’s spiritual dimension”.

About £900,000 will go to Save the Children in India, with £125,000 set aside for The Minds and Life Institute.

The Dalai Lama and the late Mother Theresa are the only people in history who won both the Nobel Peace Prize and Templeton Prize.

A small portion of the money will also go towards a fund to educate young Tibetan monks about science.

“The 76-year-old is being awarded the prize for encouraging “serious scientific investigative reviews of the power of compassion”, and its potential to address world problems.

The John Templeton Foundation said he was chosen for exploring these issues – which are key themes of his teachings – with people beyond his own religious traditions.”

Quoting a charity official the BBC said “A million pounds is a big donation, even for an organization of the size of Save the Children. The charity’s chief executive Justin Forsyth said it would go a long way in India, where £100 will train a health worker.”

“But what makes the gift even more valuable for a charity competing for donor money is that it comes from the Dalai Lama. It represents recognition from a religious superstar.”

The Dalai Lama said his generation was now placing its hope in future generations, and by implication organisations such as Save the Children..

It is the 40th anniversary of the Templeton Prize, which was established in 1972 as a global award honouring a living person who affirms “life’s spiritual dimension” – whether through insight, discovery, or practical works.

It also comes with a £1.1 million prize, making it the largest annual monetary award given to an individual.

Foundation president Dr John Templeton said: “With an increasing reliance on technological advances to solve the world’s problems, humanity also seeks the reassurance that only a spiritual quest can answer.

“The Dalai Lama offers a universal voice of compassion underpinned by a love and respect for spiritually relevant scientific research that centres on every single human being.”

The Dalai Lama, 76 – who was born Lhamo Dhondub – won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989 and is believed by Buddhist followers to be the reincarnation of an ancient leader who epitomised compassion.

Other people to have received the Templeton Prize include fellow Nobel laureate Mother Teresa, first recipient of the prize in 1973.

Speaking to reporters before the award ceremony the Dalai Lama said, “China is beset by a moral crisis, widespread corruption and lawlessness, leading millions of Chinese to seek solace in Buddhism.”

“Look at China now, the moral crisis, corruption – immense,” he said, adding that China had “no proper rule of law”.

“Look at China now, the moral crisis, corruption – immense,” he said, adding that China had “no proper rule of law”.

A survey two years ago found that 200 million Chinese followed Buddhism, including many who followed Tibetan Buddhism, he said.


  1. Fran Diaz Says:

    Apart from the Dalai Lama’s other donations, we really applaud this part :

    “A small portion of the money will also go towards a fund to educate young Tibetan monks about science”. What a wise person the Dalai Lama is !

  2. A. Sooriarachi Says:

    Espousing the qualities of a good buddhist, the Dalai Lama has quite wisely chosen deserving charities to donate the Templeton Prize money awarded to him.
    This proves beyond doubt, (if anyone did have such unfounded doubts), that he is a great humanist and this fact China must accept and allow the Dalai Lama to go on pilgrimage to places of buddhist worship situated in countries which are greatly dependent on China and therefore, not welcoming the Dalai Lama to their countries, fearing Chinese wrath and economic sanctions.
    Let us hope China would treat the Dalai Lama more humanely and also as a further gesture, protect the unique Tibetan culture, which existed for thosands of years prior to the relatively recent Chinese invasion of that peaceful buddhist nation.

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