It is with great pleasure that we present our friend Richard Gere’s message. Richard, a Buddhist and a longtime friend of Tibet, has contributed to Norbulingka both in spirit and in action since its very beginning. We first met in 1997, following the purchase of land where my husband Kalsang Yeshi, then working in the Department of Religion and Culture in the CTA, and I planned to build an Institute for Tibetan Culture. It was just a dream, comprising four acres of fallow rice paddies and tea plants, and no means for anything else. Richard was sitting by me at a teaching by His Holiness, and I told him about our dream, offered to show him the land. We rode in a jeep, the type with the narrow facing seats at the back, and took him on a tour, explaining what would be going where. A Japanese architect had already made a model, of which I showed him a photograph. As we left, he looked towards the land and asked me “Can you imagine it?” I closed my eyes, and said “yes”.
Over the years, Richard visited Dharamsala to attend teachings and Mind and Life Conferences. There was always time for a dinner at our house and a visit to Norbulingka, which he saw evolve from its very beginning. He showed his support through his orders of important religious pieces and financial backing for several projects related to the Institute.
Recently, when Covid hit, Richard offered his support with this message that expresses so well what Norbulingka means to him and how everyone can help by visiting Norbulingka virtually, through its website. Thank you Richard, for your thoughtfulness and support !!
Kim Yeshi, Norbulingka co-founder