China has been warning world leaders and politicians against meeting the Dalai Lama, saying it would be perceived as a ‘major offence’!

I smile every time I hear this: I’d seen the Dalai Lama many years ago; a man whose very personality exuded such peace and tranquility, one came away feeling blessed and sanctified. I’d not seen any Tibetan army around him, no soldiers with machine guns, not seen any sign of bullet proof vest. Everything around him was about calm and quiet, and then I had watched videos of the Chinese army; marching in brutal formation to scare the living daylights of the viewer. Faces impassive, trying to feign harshness, cruelty and glazed warlike look, jaws jutting in defiance, mouths curled in surly grimace. Ready to take down any foe who stood in their way.

He fell! The pavement had been unkind to him, he hadn’t seen the sharp stone sticking out, uneven, arrogant, catching his worn out, treadles soles and throwing him forward with a lurch. He lay quietly on the ground, waiting for arms he knew would come to help him up, but there were none.

He thought of friends, men and women who would have rushed gladly to lift him up from cruel, callous ground, but knew they were not there anymore; they’d also fallen into deeper pits called graves or had been laid on cremation fire that had smoked their souls away.

Times will change my friend, and thoughts expressed here today are written for you and you alone. Whatever you are going through now, it will pass!"

These are words of comfort I need to share. Four words, you should engrave upon mind and soul and never, ever forget. Whatever, your situation today, whether you be filled with sadness or despair, whether there is boredom in your life, unease or restlessness, maybe grief, pain or hurt, 'all this will pass'..

As governments in India pass laws on religious conversion, and political leaders create disharmony by talking about allurement and inducement in changing religions, a poor man who had converted from the religion of his forefathers to that of a so called foreign god, stood in front of a judge in a courtroom somewhere in India wearing a dhoti and a torn, worn out discarded shirt from someone else’s wardrobe.

I sat in my seat next to the window, in the airbus that was taking me from Bangalore to Bombay yesterday, and heard the voice of the pilot over the PA system, “Ladies and gentlemen,” he said, “We will be hitting turbulence for a while, but trust me, I will take you up, just above the clouds!”