When the Dalai Lama comes to Capitol Hill, he gets the full celebrity treatment. So when he delivered the opening prayer on the Senate floor this morning, the members couldn’t pass up the opportunity to snap photos with His Holiness.
— Chuck Schumer (@SenSchumer) March 6, 2014
— Mark Warner (@MarkWarner) March 6, 2014
— Senator Mazie Hirono (@maziehirono) March 6, 2014
— Sen. Patrick Leahy (@SenatorLeahy) March 6, 2014
Security at the Capitol was noticeably boosted prior to the Dalai Lama’s arrival, and visitors piled into the Senate gallery, which is normally close to empty during the early morning hours, to hear His Holiness pray.
“With our thoughts we make our word. Our mind is central and precedes our deeds. Speak or act with your pure mind and happiness will follow you like a shadow that never leaves,” the Dalai Lama prayed, apparently his first-ever over the Senate. “May there be joy in the world with bountiful harvest and spiritual wealth. May every good fortune come to be and may all our wishes be fulfilled.”
The Dalai Lama then recited his “favorite prayer” that he said he prays daily to provide him with “inner strength.”
“As long as space remains, and as long as sentient beings remain, until then may I too remain,” he said, “and help dispel the misery of the world.”
The Dalai Lama also visited with House Speaker John Boehner and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi. A local sandwich shop even offered to deliver sandwiches for Boehner and His Holiness.
— Taylor Gourmet (@Taylor_Gourmet) March 6, 2014