A lot of, well, weirdness, has been taking place in regard to the Australian visit of the Dalai Lama. The spiritual leader of Tibet has been touring Australia recently, and there has been a lot of rather confused thinking surrounding the event – both in political and religious terms.

The Prime Minister refused to meet with him. I suppose as an atheist that would be expected; and also because she does not want to upset a major trading partner: China. But even more bizarre was the reaction of the Greens leader Bob Brown.

He was quite irate about Ms Gillard not meeting with him. He met with the spiritual leader, and said, “There is more to this place than simply people with big money.” The inference is that maybe such things as religion are also important – which would be a strange admission coming from Bob Brown the atheist.

Of interest is all the immense attention paid to the spiritual leader when he comes here – or to other parts of the West. One simply cannot imagine a high ranking, Bible-believing Christian getting so much adoration and attention. Indeed, quite the opposite would be the case.

But the Dalai Lama gets invited all over the place, has plenty of media attention and appearances, meets with all sorts of VIPs, and basically gets a free ride in terms of being allowed to do and say anything that he wants. He is given rock star status alright. He is right up there with Hollywood celebs and other big cheeses.

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