UCSB announced on Thursday that the Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama, will honor the school with his fourth visit on April 29, 2009. The exiled Tibetan leader will deliver two public lectures. This will be the Dalai Lama’s first visit to UCSB since the XIVth Dalai Lama Chair in Tibetan Buddhism, an endowed professorship, was created in 2001. This stop at UCSB’s events center will be the Dalai Lama’s only one in Southern California in 2009.
The Dalai Lama was invited by Jose Cabez³n, the first holder of the Dalai Lama Chair and a professor of religious studies at UCSB. “This is an extraordinary opportunity for members of the university and of the broader Santa Barbara community to learn from the world’s most renowned and revered Buddhist teacher,” Cabez³n explained in a press release. UCSB Chancellor Henry Yang also expressed his enthusiasm, saying, “The visit by the Dalai Lama offers students and faculty across the University the opportunity to deepen their knowledge of Buddhist traditions and scholarship.”
In honor of the visit, the College of Letters and Science will be organizing a series of events related to Buddhism and Tibetan culture and history, including lectures, films, and concerts as well as an exhibit of Tibetan art. These will coincide with the Dalai Lama’s visit in April, and the department of religious studies will release further details as the date nears.
Previously, the Dalai Lama visited UCSB for the first time in 1984 and returned in 1991, two years after receiving the Nobel Peace Prize. His presence inspired the creation of the Tibetan Cultural Studies endowment in June 1991, mainly supported by donations from citizens of Santa Barbara and its surrounding communities. He visited UCSB again in 1997.
Tickets for the event are scheduled to go on sale Saturday, December 6, at Ticketmaster and at the Arlington Theatre box office. Tickets for the morning talk from 9:30-11:30 a.m. (The Nature of Mind) are $40, $60, or $100 depending on seat location, and tickets for the afternoon talk (Ethics for Our Time) from 2-4 p.m. are $40, $60, or $200. All UCSB student tickets will be sold at the Arts & Lectures box office on campus to students who possess valid ID for $20 and must be bought before Friday, February 13.