Friday, January 18, 2013

Human Potential

I have always loved His Holiness the Dalai Lama. I even have a (large) framed picture of him in my kitchen. I have hung prayer flags across my porch, between trees, in windows, and in the back of my car. I have studied Buddhism and have a sister-in-law that is 100% Tibetan. Taking none of that away, I find myself a little pissed off with him right this minute.

I am re-reading his book, THE DALAI LAMA'S LITTLE BOOK OF WISDOM. I'm using it a part of a daily practice, just reading a few pages a day and trying to meditate on them. His wisdom and guidance is profound, and until a few days ago, I thought faultless. But here's what he said that got me, and granted, it's kind of a "thing" with me: "As humans, we all have the same human potential, unless there is some sort of retarded brain function. The wonderful human brain is the source of our strength and the source of the future, provided we utilize it in the right direction. If we use the brilliant human mind in the wrong way, it is really a disaster."

Could NOT agree more about that last part - try to think of a sinister person now, or in our history that isn't/wasn't brilliant. You'll be hard pressed. But to say that those with less brain function do not have the same human potential for our strength and our source of the future, is just plain wrong. I think I know what he means, and no question about it, we need the brilliant minds of the world to reach and strive for good, they will impact our future, for sure, but so too can those whose brain function is, well, let's go with "different."

The people I know who have a "different" brain function are the leaders of the world, they are pointing us where we all need to go. They get it on a level others don't. They are here for a reason and have much to teach. Their "potential" is not the problem, our view of it is the problem.

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Carrie is a parent and advocate of a child with special needs and even more special gifts. She blogs at where this is pretty much her favorite topic. Carrie’s book, WIL OF GOD: Embracing the Relentless Love of a Special Child, is available in print on Amazon and all e-readers.


  1. I'm betting a lot of this has to do with things getting lost in translation. "Retarded" to him might mean functioning from a lack of love.

    I'm just guessing, based on his track record.

  2. I'm hoping that Michelle is on the right track, but I also think that it negates the effect of the soul, which I see as a tremendous source of strength. I think you should email him with your thoughts. I'm betting he would love to see things from your perspective and I don't know of anyone who could teach him better than you.