Greetings to the Year 2011, which is Iron Hare year, or year of the Rabbit in Tibetan calendar. It is one more year which has ended and another year which has begun in our life. It is meaningful for us to reflect back at the year which we have lived and make genuine, sincere assessment of what we have achieved, which is beneficial for us, and beneficial for everyone. At the same time, we also should identify if there is any, which I think many of us will have quite few, what shortcomings that we have encountered or surfaced in our life in this past year. This way, we get a very good perspective of ourselves and what we can contribute to the humanity and sentient beings at large. And also, what do we need to do to make ourselves more efficient and more beneficial and positive for ourselves and for everyone else. At the same time, then we can make and renew our commitment or aspirations and inspirations for the coming year. In this coming year, we will do our best to complete those good things that we have started and those cannot be completed, then we will continue and make a good, meaningful progress. So we should make that clearly, intentionally.
Now another thing that we should recognize which is absolutely crucial, whether you are Buddhist or not, whether you consider yourself religious or non-believer or whatever you consider yourself, it is crucial for everyone. We are interconnected to each other, everyone of us, we are interconnected not only to each other, but to the entire universe. The universe, the environment, the container and what is being contained in it, all sentient beings, all of us, we are part and parcel of each other. We are interconnected. By knowing this, the unnecessary obsession, sometimes even, with due respect, neurotic about the differences, the bias, and all kind of discrimination, they become irrelevant, absolutely irrelevant. Because if we are biased to each other and discriminating against each other, or we are abusing the environment, we are abusing the nature, then we are being biased to part of ourselves, as well as we are abusing part of ourselves. It will all come back upon each and every one of us, it wouldn't take lifetimes or even centuries, it will happen right now. We remember the cost when we experience the result. Therefore, it is absolutely crucial to know this, know this not only intellectually, but know this personally and clearly and be convinced about this.
Nowadays, all of you, everybody exposes to so many things, and we know what is happening in another part of the world right from our living room. And this way, almost all of us, in fact, large percentage of humanity on this earth are directly exposed to the information about what is happening in this world, different parts of the world. And we can't just sit back and watch it but we know this is happening to our fellow human beings, our fellow sentient beings, at our home, the planet earth. This way, there is so much each and every one of us can do to make this thing better, if not totally prevent but we can make those things not so bad. As I always tell everyone that I know, I say, we should not think I am just one person, in the billions of human beings on this earth, therefore what can I do, what effect would there be if I do something, because I am so small, just one, there are billions. My brothers and sisters, I tell you, every one of the billions is just one of us, if each one of us say the same thing and have this kind of attitude, what can I do, my effort will be meaningless, useless, then we have no future. What I mean by no future is we don't have bright future. Our future will deteriorate day by day in every possible scenario. Therefore, each one of us should do our level best to make ourselves more useful, more meaningful and take care of immediate vicinity in which we dwell. If this is done by one percent of the humanity, how much difference would there be. And that is bound to affect another few percentage of the humanity who are close to us, and that will definitely affect many others who are close to each and every one of them. So think about this, everyone on this earth is dear one to somebody, known to somebody, close to somebody, this way, our future is bright. Sometimes we see so much negativity so that we get discouraged, and we think there is no hope; everything is too late. I don't believe that, long as we can talk about it, long as we are breathing, long as we are walking, long as we are able to talk to each other and talk about things, and live just like we do right now, it is not too late.
Therefore, we definitely should have this awakening, awakening of the connectedness and oneness of the entire humanity, as well as all living beings, as well as entire universe and the beings that dwell in it. We are one of them. Have a very good year and very meaningful year. Happy New Year.
I want to add one more thing; that is very personal to myself. My Vajradhara, the Guru, supreme guru, Gyalwang Karmapa, Rangjung Rigpei Dorje, he is the sixteenth Karmapa, his incarnation is the seventeenth Karmapa, who is seventeenth Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje, This year, the Year 2011, is the birth anniversary of the first Gyalwang Karmapa Dusum Khyenpa, who was born in area known as Teshö, or sometimes written as Teshu. This is very special year for me personally. Anyway, have a very good, meaningful year, and as I told you earlier, make your life beneficial and meaningful, that will make you happy, you will be a very happy person if you can say to yourself: I have done my level best in every possible way; there is no reason for you to feel unhappy, there is no reason for you to feel guilty. There is no reason for you to feel that you have failed something. If you have done your best, you will be content, you will be happy; contentment is joy, contentment is happy. And you enjoy life, enjoy life by making the best of your life, use your life to make yourself better, use your life to make others better,
use your life to make everything better for many generations to come.