GOOD

The Dalai Lama is ‘deeply sorry’ for saying a female successor should be attractive

Spiritual beauty should be more important than physical beauty. Unless you're a woman. Then, you gotta make sure your soul is smoking hot, right? The Dalai Lama was recently put on blast for saying a female Dalai Lama should be attractive. But the spiritual leader says that his comments were taken out of context and that he is “deeply sorry" if he came across as sexist.


In a recent interview with the BBC, His Holiness said, "If a female Dalai Lama comes, she should be more attractive." But what the Dalai Lama said isn't what he meant. His office issued a statement saying his comments were misunderstood. "His Holiness genuinely meant no offense. He is deeply sorry that people have been hurt by what he said and offers his sincere apologies," the statement said.

The Dalai Lama first said similar sentiments in 1992 during an interview with Vogue Paris. The Dalai Lama was asked if there could be a female Dalai Lama in the future. “Certainly, if that would be more helpful," he said, joking that she should be attractive.

The Dalai Lama chalks up the misunderstanding to “the contradictions between the materialistic, globalized world he encounters on his travels and the complex, more esoteric ideas about reincarnation that are at the heart of Tibetan Buddhist tradition." The statement says, “However, it sometimes happens that off the cuff remarks, which might be amusing in one cultural context, lose their humor in translation when brought into another." The current Dalai Lama is the reincarnation of his 13 predecessors.

The statement also mentioned the Dalai Lama's history of supporting women. "For all his long life, His Holiness has opposed the objectification of women, has supported women and their rights and celebrated the growing international consensus in support of gender equality and respect for women," said the statement. "His Holiness has frequently suggested that if we had more women leaders, the world would be a more peaceful place." The Dalai Lama also allowed Tibetan nuns to earn Geshe-ma degrees, something which used to be only for male monks.

Unfortunately, there is a tendency to objectify women, even those who are in power. The Dalai Lama's comments might have been a joke, but a female Dalai Lama would probably have to answer the question, “What are you wearing?" or have her physical description discussed in detail by people who are dead serious.

Articles
Screenshot via Sweden.se/Twitter (left) Wikimedia Commons (right)

Greta Thunberg has been dubbed the "Joan of Arc of climate change" for good reason. The 16-year-old activist embodies the courage and conviction of the unlikely underdog heroine, as well as the seemingly innate ability to lead a movement.

Thunberg has dedicated her young life to waking up the world to the climate crisis we face and cutting the crap that gets in the way of fixing it. Her speeches are a unique blend of calm rationality and no-holds-barred bluntness. She speaks truth to power, dispassionately and unflinchingly, and it is glorious.

Keep Reading Show less
The Planet
Ottawa Humane Society / Flickr

The Trump Administration won't be remembered for being kind to animals.

In 2018, it launched a new effort to reinstate cruel hunting practices in Alaska that had been outlawed under Obama. Hunters will be able to shoot hibernating bear cubs, murder wolf and coyote cubs while in their dens, and use dogs to hunt black bears.

Efforts to end animal cruelty by the USDA have been curtailed as well. In 2016, under the Obama Administration, the USDA issued 4,944 animal welfare citations, in two years the numbers dropped to just 1,716.

Keep Reading Show less
Science

The disappearance of 40-year-old mortgage broker William Earl Moldt remained a mystery for 22 years because the technology used to find him hadn't been developed yet.

Moldt was reported missing on November 8, 1997. He had left a nightclub around 11 p.m. where he had been drinking. He wasn't known as a heavy drinker and witnesses at the bar said he didn't seem intoxicated when he left.

Keep Reading Show less
Communities
via Real Time with Bill Maher / YouTube and The Late Late Show with James Corden / YouTube

A controversial editorial on America's obesity epidemic and healthcare by comedian Bill Maher on his HBO show "Real Time" inspired a thoughtful, and funny, response by James Cordon. It also made for a great debate about healthcare that Americans are avoiding.

At the end of the September 6th episode of "Real Time, " Maher turned to the camera for his usual editorial and discussed how obesity is a huge part of the healthcare debate that no one is having.

"At Next Thursday's debate, one of the candidates has to say, 'The problem with our healthcare system is Americans eat shit and too much of it.' All the candidates will mention their health plans but no one will bring up the key factor: the citizens don't lift a finger to help," Maher said sternly.

Keep Reading Show less
Politics
via Gage Skidmore

The common stereotypes about liberals and conservatives are that liberals are bleeding hearts and conservatives are cold-hearted.

It makes sense, conservatives want limited government and to cut social programs that help the more vulnerable members of society. Whereas liberals don't mind paying a few more dollars in taxes to help the unfortunate.

A recent study out of Belgium scientifically supports the notion that people who scored lower on emotional ability tests tend to have right-wing and racist views.

Keep Reading Show less
Politics