A dialogue with Father Ceyrac — Part 1

By Matthieu Ricard on August 07, 2011

Father Ceyrac is now 97 years old and still lives in India close to those to whom he gave so much help and so much love. With limited means, this French Jesuit Father, who has lieve in the Indian Tamil Nadu region for nearly half a century, has succeeded in rescuing from a state of utter neglect 45,000 poverty-stricken children, whom his netw...

The tragic flaws of torture

By Matthieu Ricard on July 31, 2011

Torture is still widely practice all over the world as a supposedly efficient way of extracting confessions from allegedly guilty people. Torture certainly works to obtain confessions, the problem being that such confessions have, more often than not, not much to do with the truth. In countless cases, the target confesses something as the onl...

Dialogue with Jane Goodall -- Part 3: The Endless Killing of Animals

By Matthieu Ricard on July 21, 2011

Matthieu: Human intelligence can produce Gandhi and can also produce Hitler. But a superior intelligence does not give humans the right to slaughter at will billions and billions of animals every year. It seems that the value of an animal is practically zero compared to that of a human. During the episode of the Hoof and Mouth Disease, for in...

Dialogue with Jane Goodall : Part 2 Becoming Aware of the Suffering behind Eating Meat

By Matthieu Ricard on July 16, 2011

Matthieu: It seems also that slaughterhouses are guarded as if they were top-secret military facilities. You can't see anything. But if it were shown even a little bit to people, they would find it intolerable. Jane: There is a wonderful woman in America. She got a job in an abattoir and managed to secretly film what was going on. But th...

Dialogue with Jane Goodall -- Part1 How Animals are Treated.

By Matthieu Ricard on July 11, 2011

Matthieu: There is an unbroken connection and continuity between the various animal species and humans. The reality of this continuum should make humans re-examine the way we treat other animals Jane Goodall: There is of course no question that there is a continuity of feelings and emotions. There is no question that animals feel pain. I ...

Dealing with craving

By Matthieu Ricard on July 07, 2011

Desire is a mainly a drive. You may desire to save the planet or to free all sentient beings from suffering. But when desires become entangled with craving and powerful attachments, our experience shows that they lead to suffering. Desire usually starts with an image. If the image is enticing and promises pleasure, it triggers a chain rea...

‟One has never seen a safe on a coffin.”

By Matthieu Ricard on June 25, 2011

Recently, I met an elder person who was expressing her sadness that many of her friends where so attached to their money, even as death was coming near. She concluded: ‟What is the point? One has never seen a safe on a coffin. » What would we like to leave to our children? An embellished image of ourselves? Material possessions about whic...

Silent Spring

By Matthieu Ricard on June 19, 2011

In France, according to a report by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), 26% of the breeding birds (568 species) are considered to be endangered. Urban concentration and the massive use of pesticides are deemed to be the main causes. Due to a careful study that was conducted by a thousand ornithologists, the ‟Suivi tempo...

Children no longer climb trees

By Matthieu Ricard on June 13, 2011

I recently visited a friend who lives in Franche-Comté and whose parents, now retired, were the last independent farmers of that region. Now, there are no more. As we travelled across the countryside, my friend told me, ‟In the past, during the cherry-picking season, we were all in the trees feasting. Now, cherries remain on the branches. Tod...