Glastonbury 2015: Dalai Lama joins Patti Smith on Pyramid Stage

"Because the Night" singer takes opportunity to celebrate exiled Tibetan spiritual leader

Matilda Battersby
Monday 29 June 2015 09:40
Dalai Lama thanks Glastonbury for birthday messages with Patti Smith on Pyramid Stage
Dalai Lama thanks Glastonbury for birthday messages with Patti Smith on Pyramid Stage

The Dalai Lama was treated to a rendition of “Happy Birthday” from tens of thousands of Glastonbury-goers after he was invited onstage by ‘70s music legend Patti Smith.

The exiled leader of the Tibetan Buddhist order joined Smith, 68, on the Pyramid Stage where she paid tribute to him ahead of his 80th birthday, on 6th July, and read "a little birthday poem" in his honour.

The pair held hands and Smith led the crowd in “Happy Birthday” as a the spiritual leader clapped his hands together in apparent thanks before blowing out the candles on his cake.

“Thank you, thank you. Dear sisters and brothers, I really appreciate so many peoples’ expression of well feeling. I very much appreciate. I dedicate my body, space and mind to my daily practice. So when people show me years of warm feeling that gives me more enthusiasm,” he said.

But it wasn’t all seriousness, as the Buddhist leader joked: “These singers and musicians - most of you have white hair. When I looked at you, you all have white hair. But when you hear their voices and physical action they seem very enthusiastic. So that gives me encouragement that I, at 80, should be more active.”

Smith interjected the Dalai’s message with “Your voice is better now than mine ever was” before the Tibetan continued his message of compassion to a rapt crowd.

Earlier today the head monk of Tibetan Buddhism took to a small wooden stage in front of the Tibetan flag in the King's Meadow to share a message of "love and tolerance and fairness" with his supporters.

The 14th Dalai Lama spoke primarily about the problems caused when extremists, such as ISIS, although he didn’t mention the terrorist organisation directly, use these religious ideologies to create conflict.

"In Syria and Iraq and some other places they're killing other human beings," he said. "Unthinkable. The worst thing is the killing of others in the name of faith. Unthinkable".

Prior to his visit China warned “strongly against” his invitation to Worthy Farm, Somerset.

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