Science, Spirituality and Education
International Conference organized by the
Namgyal Institute of Tibetology
Under the Auspices of the Government of Sikkim
Gangtok, Sikkim, India
20 – 23 December 2010
In December 2010, His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama visited Sikkim and presided over the opening of an international conference on Science, Spirituality and Education (20-23 December 2010). The conference, organised by the Namgyal Institute of Tibetology under the auspices of the Government of Sikkim, laid the foundations for Sikkim’s efforts to formally introduce concepts of moral ethics in its school curriculum. It provided a forum for scientists, Buddhist scholars, educators and representatives from local schools and government to explore and begin to understand the brain and its plasticity, the mind and its possible transformation, the art and science of meditation together with the importance of social emotional learning and moral ethics in the field of education. The conference was followed by a workshop on how the presented findings could best be implemented in order to bring about positive changes in the modern education system.
As stated in a press release: “The inauguration of the conference by His Holiness is apt because he has always evinced a keen interest in science, and drawing from his advanced understanding of theosophical matters, often commented that science and spiritualism are not contradictory to each other and could in fact collaborate to explain things more completely. He is a leading proponent of Mind & Life Sciences and has consistently reiterated that complete education requires a sound rooting of students in spiritualism and the concepts of morality and ethics… In fact, one of the reasons which convinced His Holiness to make time to visit Sikkim for the Conference was the State Government’s interest to implement the findings of the Conference to schools in Sikkim.”