The Dalai Lama talks compassion in healthcare at Saint Marys Hos - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

The Dalai Lama talks compassion in healthcare at Saint Marys Hospital


Mayo Clinic Staff got a special treat Monday afternoon. The Dalai Lama spoke to a crowd at Saint Marys Hospital.

Compassion is a value intertwined with the healthcare world.... and a message nearly everyone can appreciate.

Today, about 500 Mayo Clinic employees got the rare chance to hear the words of peace and respect directly from the exiled Buddhist spiritual leader of Tibet.

The chapel within Saint Marys Hospital is fit to host a king, but the speech came Monday from a humble man with a message of humility.

"Please join me in welcoming, His Holiness, the Dalai Lama,” said Dr. John Noseworthy, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Mayo Clinic, choking up as he spoke.

The Tibetan Buddhist leader, after inviting Mayo Clinic CEO Dr. Noseworthy to sit next to him, opened with a joke.

"Otherwise, [there will be a ]nice empty chair here, maybe for some ghost,” said the Dalai Lama.

The Dalai Lama's gathering was long anticipated. Employees, like Dave Tran, a Vietnamese Buddhist, had to enter a lottery just for the chance to see him speak.

"We actually went to Minneapolis last Sunday to listen to him,” Tran said. “Awesome.”

For those from different walks of faith, it's a chance to hear a message of peace and positivity.

“I don't think I have any words to describe how special and meaningful this opportunity is,” said Alison Sadowy.

The Dalai Lama got interactive, taking questions from the room on the subject of compassion in healthcare.

"The nurse or doctor who tells this patient [a] thing without smile, that will be the patient you see more difficult to accept,” His Holiness said.

His Holiness said said caregivers, instead of feeling helpless treating a terminally ill patient, should focus on nurturing their mind.

"Then at the time of dying, the mental state is very, very important for next life,” he said.

The Dalai Lama did not hold back his sense of humor, poking fun at the wires tangled beneath his robe, and even joking about how he doesn't own a cell phone.

“I love technology!” he exclaimed.

"You love technology?" asked the moderator, Cathy Wurzer of Minnesota Public Radio.

"Yes, Technology bring us here, together,” said the Dalai Lama.

Not straying far, though, from his universal message of humanity that speaks to the Med City.

The Dalai Lama did say Monday that he's saddened to leave Rochester and the Mayo Clinic, speaking good things about his time here.

Mayo Clinic cannot say, however, whether this means His Holiness is done with his treatments.

Powered by Frankly