Crowd of thousands excited to see Dalai Lama - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Crowd of thousands excited to see Dalai Lama

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by Danielle Wagner

CEDAR FALLS (KWWL) About 5,400 tickets were sold for the panel discussion at UNI McLeod Center. Ticket holders waited in line for their chance to see and hear the Dalai Lama.

"To be able to see an example of somebody who holds so much compassion and kindness in their heart. It just inspires me because it helps me realize those capacities are in me as well," said Darcy Bloss.

Darcy Bloss is from Kansas City. She found out about the Dalai Lama's visit to UNI at a Buddhist center she attends. She's been looking forward to this day for months.

"So back in January I purchased my tickets, made hotel arrangements and was basically excited to find him in my backyard," said Bloss.

Debbie Thompson is from Fairfield. Being here is fulfilling one of her goals.

"It has been a personal goal of mine for many, many years to see the Dalai Lama in person. He has a very compelling story about his country, and also he is a true spiritual leader," said Thompson.

Vendors selling traditional Tibetan merchandise filled a grassy area in front of the McLeod Center. Denzing Dhargayn is originally from Tibet and now lives in India. He has relatives in the U.S. but this is his first trip to Iowa. He follows the Dalai Lama when he can.

"I just like to be in his presence. It has a very wonderful feeling," said Dhargayn.

He said most people know the Dalai Lama teaches tolerance and compassion, but for the people of Tibet, the Dalai Lama is a sort of identity.

"He is everything for Tibet. You identify Tibet and Dalai Lama," said Dhargayn.

Many people we spoke with certainly view this visit as a once in a lifetime opportunity to see and hear the Dalai Lama.

Reporter: Danielle Wagner

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