Press release

Press release May 6th, 2018

Dalai Lama to visit The Netherlands in September

The visit will include a Buddhist teaching, a public lecture, a conversation with Richard Gere, all in the Rotterdam Ahoy, and a special dialogue during the opening of the exhibition ‘Het leven van Boeddha, het pad naar nu’ (Buddha’s Life, Path to the Present) in De Nieuwe Kerk, Amsterdam.

The Dalai Lama (82), Nobel Peace Prize laureate and spiritual leader of the Tibetan people, will visit The Netherlands this autumn. On September 16th and 17th he will give two public lectures in the Rotterdam Ahoy. The first lecture will be preceded by a conversation between the Dalai Lama and Richard Gere, in his role as chairman of the International Campaign for Tibet (ICT). This part of the program is in honour of the 30th anniversary of ICT.

The theme of the Dalai Lama’s visit to The Netherlands on 14-17 September will be compassion, and why it is so essential in these turbulent times. The Dalai Lama: ‘Developing compassion and understanding for others will bring us what we are all looking for: peace and happiness.’

The Dalai Lama is visiting The Netherlands at the invitation of De Nieuwe Kerk Amsterdam and the Foundation for the Visit of the Dalai Lama (Stichting Bezoek Dalai Lama). This foundation consists of representatives of all the Tibetan Buddhist traditions in The Netherlands, the Tibet Support Group and International Campaign for Tibet Europe. The Dalai Lama visited The Netherlands for the last time in 2014. Paula de Wys, the foundation’s chair: ‘More than 10.000 people were able to listen to his practical and inspiring words. The Dalai Lama says: ‘My religion is kindness’ - and that is what he puts into practice.’

Program components of the Dalai Lama’s visit that are currently confirmed are:

• September 15th:
De Nieuwe Kerk Amsterdam will organize a special dialogue during which the Dalai Lama will speak with, amongst others, scientists and youth about compassion and technology. This is the opening ceremony of the exhibition ‘Het leven van Boeddha, het pad naar nu’. This part of the program is by invitation only. More information on the exhibition can be found on

• September 16th:
o Meeting with the Benelux Tibetan community.
o Public lecture by the Dalai Lama, preceded by a conversation between Richard Gere and the Dalai Lama, in honour of the 30th anniversary of International Campaign for Tibet.
o Lecture ‘The power of compassion in daily life’ by Geshe Thupten Jinpa, the Dalai Lama’s main translator and author of the book 'A fearless heart: how the courage to be compassionate can transform our lives'. This part of the program will be hosted by Richard Gere: the Dalai Lama will not be present.

• September 17th:
Buddhist teaching by the Dalai Lama on how to develop compassion, entitled ‘Eight Verses of Training the Mind in Compassion’. The program on September 16th and 17th will take place in the Ahoy Rotterdam.

On Sunday May 6th 10 am, ticket sales for the public program on September 16th and 17th will commence on The meeting with the Tibetan community is not included. Profits from the ticket sales will be used to cover the costs of the visit. Any surplus will be donated to projects for Tibetans, inside and outside Tibet.