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We’ve all had regrets in life.

My first major regret happened when I was seventeen years old although I did not realize my missed opportunity until a decade later.

On a Friday in November 1976 during my grade twelve world religions class, our teacher announced that he had an extra curricular activity that he wanted us, his class, to participate in.

Our mission was to find our way downtown to St. John’s Anglican Church that Sunday evening where the Dalai Lama would be making an unprecedented appearance.

Did I go?


I had never heard of the Dalai Lama, nor did I have any interest in learning about the Buddhist religion.

Older and wiser now almost forty years later, and I have yet to forgive myself.

Several years back I told a coworker this story.

She then told me that her young daughter along with her school choir had been recently invited to sing for the Dalai Lama during his visit to Canada.

She then told me that she did to allow her daughter to go because she did not want her daughter’s Christian beliefs confused by anything that the Dalai Lama had to say.

I told her that was a very bad call on her part. There is a good chance that her daughter will have issues about her Mother’s decision not to let her sing with her school choir for the Dalai Lama.

Think of the insight she would have gained by listening to his live and engaging message on peace, love and forgiveness. His life’s experiences alone carry lessons that we can all learn from.

Several years ago, I had a problem with any parent who forbade their children from reading J.K. Rawlings HARRY POTTER series. Similarly, they were not allowed to see the movies either.

I grew up in a Baptist family. My grandfather was a Baptist Minister. All my cousins regularly attended Sunday School, no exceptions.

However, our entire family revelled in fairytales and movies even if the storyline included witches and spells and potions.

I am grateful for the fact, that all the adults in our family had enough confidence in us, their children, nieces and nephews that we would accept the offered movie or storyline for what it was:

A work of fiction.

There was never any question of what was reality and what was sheer imagination.

So began the lessons to maturely make decisions for ourselves.

And these lessons continue to this day.

I hope the same for you and yours.