Dalai Lama Quotes on Life

Known for his wise words about all aspects of life, the Dalai Lama has become one of the most beloved and significant spiritual leaders in this recent century. Full of inspiration and compassion, he has devoted his life to promoting world peace and building bridges between dividing countries and environmental causes. If you could use a little nugget of advice to meditate or sit with, take a peek at these Dalai Lama quotes on how to live your best life mindfully and peacefully.


1. “Share your knowledge. It is a way to achieve immortality.”

2. “Once a year, go somewhere you’ve never been before.”

3. “We can live without religion and meditation, but we cannot survive without human affection.”

4. “Know the rules well, so you can break them effectively.”

5. “Although you may not always be able to avoid difficult situations, you can modify the extent to which you can suffer by how you choose to respond to the situation.”

6. “When we feel love and kindness towards others, it not only makes others feel loved and cared for, but it also helps us to develop inner happiness and peace.”

7. “Whether one is rich or poor, educated or illiterate, religious or non-believing, man or woman, black, white, or brown, we are all the same. Physically, emotionally, and mentally, we are all equal. We all share basic needs for food, shelter, safety, and love. We all aspire to happiness and we all shun suffering. Each of us has hopes, worries, fears, and dreams. Each of us wants the best for our family and loved ones. We all experience pain when we suffer loss and joy when we achieve what we seek. On this fundamental level, religion, ethnicity, culture, and language make no difference.”

8. “As you breathe in, cherish yourself. As you breathe out, cherish all beings.”

9. “If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.”

10. “Sleep is the best meditation.”


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11. “Sometimes one creates a dynamic impression by saying something, and sometimes one creates as

significant of an impression by remaining silent.”

12. “Judge your success by what you had to give up in order to get it.”

13. “As people alive today, we must consider future generations: a clean environment is a human right like any other. It is, therefore, part of our responsibility toward others to ensure that the world we pass on is as healthy, if not healthier than we found it.”

14. “Happiness is not something readymade, it comes from your own actions.”

15. “We begin from the recognition that all beings cherish happiness and do not want to suffer. It then becomes both morally wrong and pragmatically unwise to pursue only one’s own happiness oblivious to the feelings and aspirations of all others who surround us as members of the same human family. The wiser course is to think of others when pursuing our own happiness.”

16. “Give the ones you love wings to fly, roots to come back, and reasons to stay.”

17. “The topic of compassion is not at all religious business; it is important to know it is human business, it is a question of human survival.”

18. “Let us try to recognize the precious nature of each day.”

19. “I believe compassion to be one of the few things we can practice that will bring immediate and long-term happiness to our lives. I’m not talking about the short-term gratification of pleasures like sex, drugs, or gambling (though I’m not knocking them), but something that will bring true and lasting happiness. The kind that sticks.”

20. “The goal is not to be better than the other man, but your previous self.”

21. “My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness.”

22. “Cultivating a close, warmhearted feeling for others automatically puts the mind at ease. It helps remove whatever fears or insecurities we may have and gives us the strength to cope with any obstacles we encounter. It is the principal source of success in life. Since we are not solely material creatures, it is a mistake to place all our hopes for happiness on external development alone. The key is to develop inner peace.”

23. “Our prime purpose in this life is to help others, and if you can’t help them, at least don’t hurt them.”

24. “People take different roads seeking fulfillment and happiness. Just because they’re not on your road doesn’t mean they’ve gotten lost.”



25. “The true hero is one who conquers his own anger and hatred.”

26. “What surprises me most is “Man” because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he doesn’t enjoy the present; The result being he doesn’t live in the present or the future; He lives as if he’s never going to die, and then he dies having never really lived.”

27. “Love and Compassion are the true religions to me. But to develop this, we do not need to believe in any religion.”

28. “If you think you are too small to make a difference, try sleeping with a mosquito.”

29. “Someone else’s action should not determine your response.”

30. “I find hope in the darkest days, and focus in the brightest.”

31. “Remember that sometimes not getting what you want is a wonderful stroke of luck.”

32. “Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them, humanity cannot survive.”

33. “Love is the absence of judgment.”

34. “Through violence, you may ‘solve’ one problem, but you sow the seeds for another.”

35. “It is under the greatest adversity that there exists the greatest potential for doing good, both for

oneself and others.”

36. “When you practice gratefulness, there is a sense of respect toward others.”

37. “I defeat my enemies when I make them my friends.”

38. “Choose to be optimistic, it feels better.”

39. “Our ancient experience confirms at every point that everything is linked together, everything is inseparable.”

40. “Someone else’s action should not determine your response.”

41. “Anger is the ultimate destroyer of your own peace of mind.”

42. “The more you are motivated by love, The more fearless & free your actions will be.”

43. “There is only one important point you must keep in your mind and let it be your guide. No matter what

people call you, you are just who you are. Keep to this truth. You must ask yourself how you want to live your life. We live and we die, this is the truth that we can only face alone. No one can help us, not even the Buddha. So consider carefully, what prevents you from living the way you want to live your life?”



44. “We are the controller of technology. If we become slaves to technology, then that’s not good.”

45. “Compassion naturally creates a positive atmosphere, and as a result, you feel peaceful and content.”

46. “An open heart is an open mind.”

47. “Time passes unhindered. When we make mistakes, we cannot turn the clock back and try again. All we can do is use the present well.”

48. “Those who have little interest in spirituality shouldn’t think that human inner values don’t apply to you. The inner peace of an alert and calm mind are the source of real happiness and good health. Our human intelligence tells us which of our emotions are positive and helpful and which are damaging and to be restrained or avoided.”

49. “I will not propose to you that my way is best. The decision is up to you. If you find some point which may be suitable to you, then you can carry out experiments for yourself. If you find that it is of no use, then you can discard it.”

50. “In order to carry out a positive action we must develop a positive vision.”

51. “Most people prefer a smile to a frown. It’s human nature. Even dogs respond with wagging tails to a smile and other shows of affection.”

52. “Inner peace is the key: if you have inner peace, the external problems do not affect your deep sense of peace and tranquility…without this inner peace, no matter how comfortable your life is materially, you may still be worried, disturbed, or unhappy because of circumstances.”

53. “We all have the power of thought—so what are you lacking? If you have willpower, then you can change anything.”

54. “You must not hate those who do wrong or harmful things; but with compassion, you must do what you can to stop them — for they are harming themselves, as well as those who suffer from their actions.”

55. “Optimism doesn’t mean that you are blind to the reality of the situation. It means that you remain motivated to seek a solution to whatever problems arise.”

56. “Peace does not mean an absence of conflicts; differences will always be there. Peace means solving these differences through peaceful means; through dialogue, education, knowledge; and through humane ways.”

57. “Happiness doesn’t always come from a pursuit. Sometimes it comes when we least expect it.”

58. “Hard times build determination and inner strength. Through them, we can also come to appreciate the uselessness of anger. Instead of getting angry, nurture a deep caring and respect for troublemakers because by creating such trying circumstances they provide us with invaluable opportunities to practice tolerance and patience.”



59. “When we are motivated by compassion and wisdom, the results of our actions benefit everyone, not just our individual selves or some immediate convenience. When we are able to recognize and forgive ignorant actions of the past, we gain strength to constructively solve the problems of the present.”

60. “It is under the greatest adversity that there exists the greatest potential for doing good, both for oneself and others.”

61. “I believe the very purpose of our life is to seek happiness. Whether one believes in religion or not, whether one believes in that religion or this religion, we are all seeking something better in life. So, I think, the very motion of our life is towards happiness.”

62. “Just one small positive thought in the morning can change your whole day.”

63. “Compassion is the radicalism of our time.”

64. “I want to be just a pure spiritual leader.”

65. “If someone has a gun and is trying to kill you, it would be reasonable to shoot back with your own gun.”

66. “Where ignorance is our master, there is no possibility of real peace.”

67. “Irrespective of whether we are believers or agnostics, whether we believe in God or karma, moral ethics is a code which everyone is able to pursue.”

68. “Never give up. No matter what is going on. Never give up.”

69. “Don’t ever mistake my silence for ignorance, my calmness for acceptance or my kindness for

weakness. Compassion and tolerance are not a sign of weakness, but a sign of strength.”

70. “Optimism leads to success; pessimism leads to defeat.”

71. “When we are motivated by compassion and wisdom, the results of our actions benefit everyone, not just our individual selves or some immediate convenience. When we are able to recognize and forgive ignorant actions of the past, we gain strength to constructively solve the problems of the present.”

72. “If you have fear of some pain or suffering, you should examine whether there is anything you can do about it. If you can, there is no need to worry about it; if you cannot do anything, then there is also no need to worry.”

73. “Anger or hatred is like a fisherman’s hook. It is very important for us to ensure that we are not caught by it.”

74. “An open heart is an open mind.”

75. “Smile if you want a smile from another face.”



76. “I believe the ultimate source of blessings is within us.”

77. “Open your arms to change but don’t let go of your values.”

78. “Instead of wondering WHY this is happening to you, consider why this is happening to YOU.”

79. “An eye for an eye… we are all blind.”

80. “A disciplined mind leads to happiness, and an undisciplined mind leads to suffering.”

81. “I have always had this view about the modern education system: we pay attention to brain development, but the development of warmheartedness we take for granted.”

82. “In the practice of tolerance, one’s enemy is the best teacher.”

83. “To remain indifferent to the challenges we face is indefensible. If the goal is noble, whether or not it is realized within our lifetime is largely irrelevant. What we must do therefore is to strive and persevere and never give up.”

84. “Because we all share this planet earth, we have to learn to live in harmony and peace with each other and with nature. This is not just a dream, but a necessity.”

85. “I believe that to meet the challenges of our times, human beings will have to develop a greater sense of universal responsibility. Each of us must learn to work not just for oneself, one’s own family, or nation, but for the benefit of all humankind. Universal responsibility is the key to human survival. It is the best foundation for world peace.”

86. “Compassion is not religious business, it is human business, it is not luxury, it is essential for our own peace and mental stability, it is essential for human survival.”

87. “The creation of a more peaceful and happier society has to begin from the level of the individual, and from there it can expand to one’s family, to one’s neighborhood, to one’s community and so on.”

88. “In order to become prosperous, a person must initially work very hard, so he or she has to sacrifice a lot of leisure time.”

89. “There are two kinds of compassion. The first comes from a natural concern for friends and family who are close to us. This has limited range but can be the seed for something bigger. We can also learn to extend a genuine concern for others’ well-being, whoever they are. That is real compassion, and only human beings are capable of developing it.”

90. “Neither a space station nor an enlightened mind can be realized in a day.”

91. “Action is more important than meditation.”

92. “Old friends pass away, new friends appear. It is just like the days. An old day passes, a new day arrives. The important thing is to make it meaningful: a meaningful friend – or a meaningful day.”

93. “Virtually all of us have benefited from our mother’s affection at the start of our lives. When someone is on their deathbed if he or she is surrounded by loved ones they can pass away peacefully. From birth to death we all need affection.”



94. “I don’t know whether the universe, with its countless galaxies, stars, and planets, has a deeper meaning or not, but at the very least, it is clear that we humans who live on this earth face the task of making a happy life for ourselves. Therefore, it is important to discover what will bring about the greatest degree of happiness.”

95. “All major religious traditions carry basically the same message, that is love, compassion, and forgiveness. The important thing is they should be part of our daily lives.”

96. “Human potential is the same for all. Your feeling, “I am of no value”, is wrong. Absolutely wrong. You are deceiving yourself. We all have the power of thought – so what are you lacking? If you have willpower, then you can change anything. It is usually said that you are your own master.”

97. “To be kind, honest and have positive thoughts; to forgive those who harm us and treat everyone as a friend; to help those who are suffering and never to consider ourselves superior to anyone else: even if this advice seems rather simplistic, make the effort of seeing whether by following it you can find greater happiness.”

98. “A truly compassionate attitude toward others does not change even if they behave negatively or hurt you.”

99. “If a problem can be solved it will be. If it can not be solved there is no use worrying about it.”

100. “Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.”

101. “If you have fear of some pain or suffering, you should examine whether there is anything you can do about it. If you can, there is no need to worry about it; if you cannot do anything, then there is also no need to worry.”

102. “The purpose of all the major religious traditions is not to construct big temples on the outside, but to create temples of goodness and compassion inside, in our hearts.”

103. “Because motivation pervades all action, it is important that we have a positive motivation. Whatever we are involved in, whether it’s politics, education, medicine, law, engineering, science, business or industry, the nature of our motivation determines the character of our work.”

104. “When you realize you’ve made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it.”

105. “Proper utilization of time is so important. While we have this body, and especially this amazing human brain, I think every minute is something precious.”

106. “Let us try to recognize the precious nature of each day.”

107. “Home is where you feel at home and are treated well.”

108. “World peace must develop from inner peace. Peace is not just the mere absence of violence. Peace is, I think, the manifestation of human compassion.”

109. “We all have to live together, so we might as well live together happily.”

110. “Only the development of compassion and understanding for others can bring us the tranquility and happiness we all seek.”

111. “The important thing is that men should have a purpose in life. It should be something useful, something good.”

112. “When we meet real tragedy in life, we can react in two ways–either by losing hope and falling into self-destructive habits or by using the challenge to find our inner strength.”

113. “As individuals, we can influence our own families. Our families can influence our communities and our communities can influence our nations.”

114. “Even an animal, if you show genuine affection, gradually trust develops… If you are always showing a bad face and beating, how can you develop friendship?”

115. “The remedy is to look deeper and recognize that we human beings are physically, mentally, and emotionally the same.”



116. “Calm mind brings inner strength and self-confidence, so that’s very important for good health.”

117. “Every day, think as you wake up, today I am fortunate to be alive, I have a precious human life, I am not going to waste it. I am going to use all my energies to develop myself, to expand my heart out to others; to achieve enlightenment for the benefit of all beings. I am going to have kind thoughts towards others, I am not going to get angry or think badly about others. I am going to benefit others as much as I can.”

118. “Too much self-centered attitude, you see, brings, you see, isolation. Result: loneliness, fear, anger. The extreme self-centered attitude is the source of suffering.”

119. “If we are sincere in taking care of others, if we protect their lives and respect their rights, we’ll be able to conduct our lives transparently and that is the basis of trust, which in turn is the basis of friendship.”

120. “Be honest, truthful, and altruistic. If you concern yourself with taking care of others, there’ll be no room for lies, bullying, and cheating. If you’re truthful you can live transparently, which will enable you to establish trust, the basis for making friends.”

121. “It’s good to remember that other human beings are like us. We are born the same way; we die the same way. While we’re alive it’s better to be able to trust each other as friends.”

122. “Friendship depends on trust, not money, not power, not mere education or knowledge. Only if there is trust will there be friendship.”

123. “The planet does not need more successful people. The planet desperately needs more peacemakers, healers, restorers, storytellers, and lovers of all kinds.”

124. “When we feel love and kindness toward others, it not only makes others feel loved and cared for, but it also helps us to develop inner happiness and peace.”

125. “Even when we have physical hardships, we can be very happy.”



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