RELIGION
07/07/2014 03:46 pm ET Updated Jul 07, 2014

Dalai Lama Delivers Kalachakra Buddhist Teaching To Thousands Of Devotees (PHOTOS)

The Dalai Lama spent his 79th birthday and the days surrounding it delivering a Kalachakra for world peace in a small Himalayan town in the Ladakh district of India-administered Kashmir.

In the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, a Kalachakra is an extended ceremony centered around a mandala that aims to initiate and empower disciples. Roughly 150,000 devotees reportedly converged for the event, including Hollywood actor Richard Gere -- a longtime student of the Tibetan leader.

During the Kalachakra the Dalai Lama urged Buddhists in Myanmar and Sri Lanka to halt violence against Muslims.

"I urge the Buddhists in these countries to imagine an image of Buddha before they commit such a crime," the Dalai Lama said. "Buddha preaches love and compassion. If the Buddha is there, he will protect the Muslims whom the Buddhists are attacking."

Take a look at the gathering that drew tens of thousands of devotees to receive the Dalai Lama's teachings:

PHOTO GALLERY
Dalai Lama Delivers Kalachakra
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Happy Birthday, Dalai Lama!
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