Vammel serving of Lama

Power and Care. Toward Balance for our Common Future – Science, Society and Spirituality
Forfatter: Tania Singer ,Matthieu Ricard
Forlag: MIT Press (USA)
SPIRITUALITY: When defending our common future, more than flatness is needed about the importance of harmony and the assumption of power.


This book was written after a conference on power and care in Brussels in January 2018, where the Dalai Lama, among many others, was a participant.

The book was my first written encounter with His Holiness, and it did not add flavor. What is it? First and foremost, the exaggerated belief that a Buddhist monk is so infinitely wiser than the rest of us. What he is really doing is letting go of ignorant generalities and flatness. This obviously just depends on it whose who talks, not on what that is said. Of course, if you and I had said the same thing, it would not have had the same effect.

He has no clue

This book is partly an interview book, and the Dalai Lama constantly emphasizes that he does not have enough knowledge of what he is saying, but the interviewees do not believe him. Well, I believe him. In fact, the man has no clue. He is quite similar to the pope in the way he pronounces: soaring, inaccurate and without knowledge. He expresses himself in a knowledge void, with a hollowness that one has to be rather nosy admiring to interpret as wisdom. I wonder why so many people around the world admire this man. He is probably far more exciting as a speaker. He probably has great personal charisma, but in written form this charisma does not appear.

Everything said in this book is clothed in the kitsch of the kitsch: "Through material development alone, there is no guarantee that one can develop into a happy person or that one can create a happy family." , so true. The problem with literary kitsch is that what it says there is lifeless – even though it is so true.


All of the Dalai Lama's statements rendered are so correct. The worst thing, though, is that he gradually begins his – I'll call it preaching - to wish for a completely conflict-free society. Hello: Who wants one conflict-free society? Okay, no one wants death and misery, though a society without conflicts? No thanks. Conflict does not necessarily mean war. Even worse is when the Lama claims that if women had occupied all positions of power, the Earth would have been a much better place to live. Here he flirts with all kinds of feminine trendsetters.



This book is structured as a two-part text: part is a scientific part, which examines the relationship between animals and humans. Here, several interesting questions are asked, not least from an evolutionary perspective. Why do the female primates continue to live after they can no longer have children? Why don't they just die out? Here the term "postmenopause" is included. "Menopause" is the same as menopause or menopause, and "postmenopause" is the time women live after they are no longer able to reproduce. The answer is that it has to do with the important meaning of caring role like women also fills after menopause.

Fair enough that no one wants death and misery, but a society without conflicts? No thanks.

On this basis, the authors try to explain to us the great role of thoughtfulness and cooperation in nature. Many evolutionary psychologists and biologists have completely overlooked this aspect and almost exclusively emphasized the importance of reproduction and the struggle for existence. The book also informs us about what happens in the body of both women and men when we see the face of a cute baby. Prolactin levels rise while testosterone levels decrease. Among other things, we are used to acting more carefully and less aggressively. Based on this research, the Dalai Lama is then drawn into the discussion, as if he has any basis for commenting on history and biology – something he obviously does not have. Instead, he becomes a kind of messy care professional who serves us with general statements of the type King Harald brings on New Year's Eve.

Aggression and care

It should nevertheless be admitted that the book offers interesting glimpses. It revolves around mindfull ness, how our minds are the cause of all the world's problems, and how we can make fruitful connections between aggression and care. It's not at all unattractive. For example, psychologist Alexandra M. Freund says that part of our problem is that we consider ourselves powerless to face the global problems. Many feel that the problems will survive us and that we do not have the strength to change them. She cites many good examples of change being possible, such as how we got rid of the hole in the ozone layer. We proved that it was possible to repair it and did what it took to get rid of the problem. We banned the use of certain gases, and the ozone layer was repaired in relatively few years. Had we not thought that this was possible, the hole would only continue to grow.

Conflict can create balance if the various forces are equally strong.

However, I get both tired and annoyed when the llama begins to boast about the importance of living in harmony with oneself and others. Harmony? Why? Isn't it true that conflict is part of human nature and that this creates a kind of dynamic that keeps the world in balance? In other words, conflict does not mean the same thing as war. Conflict can create balance if the various forces are equally strong. This does not mention the Dalai Lama. Rather, we must learn to live with the conflicts. Conflict management is not about removing conflicts, but about accepting them. I'm a little disappointed that the Dalai Lama has not realized this.

The best thing about this book is the parable of two people sitting at one end of a small boat. Suddenly, one of them starts drilling a hole in one end of the boat. The other says, "What are you doing? We're going to drown. "The answer he gets is," Don't worry. I just make holes in it min end of the boat. ”

Subscription NOK 195 quarter