THE BUDDHA: “Everybody wants happiness.” says His Holiness the Dalai Lama, the leader of the Tibetan Buddhist people, “the purpose of our lives is to be happy.” In a non-religious way the Dalai Lama proclaimed, “You are your own master,” encouraging each of us to strive for our own highest purpose. Sometimes the most basic of ethical advice makes the most sense, no matter who the person or what their background. A Dalai Lama quote seen on a bumper sticker states “Kindness is my religion.” He further elaborated by saying, “I am convinced that human nature is basically affectionate and good. If our behavior follows our kind and loving nature, immense benefits will result, not only for ourselves, but also for the society to which we belong. I generally refer to this sort of love and affection as a universal religion. Everyone needs it, believers as much as non-believers. This attitude constitutes the very basis of morality.” But even the Dalai Lama takes his cues from the Buddha, whose teachings remain as relevant today as 2500 years ago.