a man in a red robe is pointing at something.

90+ Inspiring Dalai Lama Quotes to Change Your Outlook on Life

Rachel Sharpe

The Dalai Lama is one of the world’s wisest people. Over the years, his words of wisdom have become notable Dalai Lama quotes that’ll inspire you to look at the world from a different perspective. Since he meditates, he is able to offer a fresh perspective on life with his clear and thoughtful mind. In this article, we’ve compiled some of the most beautiful Dalai Lama quotes on life, love, health, compassion, happiness, and more. 

90+ Inspiring Dalai Lama Quotes to Change Your Outlook on Life

Dalai Lama Quotes

  1. “Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful stroke of luck.”
  2. “If you think you’re too small to make a difference… try sleeping with a mosquito in the room.”
  3. “There are always problems to face, but it makes a difference if our minds are calm.”
  4. “Silence is sometimes the best answer.”
  5. “Optimism doesn’t mean that you are blind to the reality of the situation. It means that you remain motivated to seek a solution to whatever problems arise.”
  6. “Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can’t help them, at least don’t hurt them.”
  7. “As you breathe in, cherish yourself. As you breathe out, cherish all beings.”
  8. “If you feel ‘burn out’ setting in, if you feel demoralized and exhausted, it is best, for the sake of everyone, to withdraw and restore yourself.”
  9. “Choose to be optimistic, it feels better.”
  10. “Through violence, you may ‘solve’ one problem, but you sow the seeds for another.”
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14th Dalai Lama Quotes

  1. “People were created to be loved. Things were created to be used. The reason why the world is in chaos is because things are being loved and people are being used.”
  2. “Hard times build determination and inner strength. Through them we can also come to appreciate the uselessness of anger. Instead of getting angry, nurture a deep caring and respect for troublemakers because by creating such trying circumstances they provide us with invaluable opportunities to practice tolerance and patience.”
  3. “The time of greatest gain in wisdom and inner strength is often the time of greatest difficulty.” 
  4. “There are only two days in the year that nothing can be done. One is called yesterday and the other is called tomorrow, so today is the right day to love, believe, do and mostly live.”
  5. “Our visit to this planet is short, so we should use our time meaningfully, which we can do by helping others wherever possible.”
  6. “We have to make a sustained effort, again and again, to cultivate the positive aspects within us.”
  7. “Judge your success by what you had to give up in order to get it.”
  8. “When you realize you’ve made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it.”
  9. “I find hope in the darkest of days, and focus in the brightest. I do not judge the universe.”
  10. “If you shift your focus from yourself to others, extend your concern to others, and cultivate the thought of caring for the well being of others, then this will have the immediate effect of opening up your life and helping you to reach out.”
The Dalai Lama speaking with a monk

Dalai Lama Quotes on Life

  1. “Once a year, go someplace you’ve never been before.” 
  2. “Nothing is permanent.”
  3. “Just one mall positive thought in the morning can change your whole day.”
  4. “Open your arms to change but don’t let go of your values.”
  5. “Someone else’s actions should not determine your response.”
  6. “When you think everything is someone else’s fault, you will suffer a lot. When you realize that everything springs only from yourself, you will learn both peace and joy.”
  7. “Know the rules well, so you can break them effectively.”
  8. “It is our collective and individual responsibility…. To preserve and tend to the world in which we all live.”
  9. “Remember that the best relationship is one in which your love for each other exceeds your need for each other.”
  10. “Every day, think as you wake up, ‘I am fortunate to be alive. I have a precious human life. I am not going to waste it.”

Dalai Lama Quotes Health

  1. “There is no benefit in worrying whatsoever.”
  2. “Happiness is the highest form of health.”
  3. “Compassion suits our physical condition, whereas anger, fear and distrust are harmful to our well-being. Therefore, just as we learn the importance of physical hygiene to physical health, to ensure healthy minds, we need to learn some kind of emotional hygiene.”
  4. “Material development only gives us sensory pleasure, but to be lastingly happy we need to develop our minds. We need calm minds.”
  5. Calm mind brings inner strength and self-confidence, so that’s very important for good health.”
  6. “The Dalai Lama, when asked what surprised him most about humanity, answered, ‘Man. Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.”

Dalai Lama Quotes on Love

  1. “Give the ones you love wings to fly, roots to come back, and reasons to stay.”
  2. “The more you are motivated by love, the more fearless and free your action will be.”
  3. “If you don’t love yourself. You cannot love others.”
  4. “The planet does not need more successful people. The planet desperately needs more peacemakers, healers, restorers, story tellers, and lovers of all kind.”
  5. “What is love? Love is the absence of judgment.”
  6. “Take into account that great love and great achievements involve great risk.”
  7. “Real change in the world will only come from a change of heart.”
  8. “Having a smart brain is not enough, we also need a warm heart.”
  9. “When you practice gratefulness, there is a sense of respect towards others.”
  10. “To be aware of a single shortcoming within oneself is more useful than to be aware of a thousand in someone else.”

Dalai Lama Quotes Compassion

  1. “Anger and hatred are signs of weakness, while compassion is a sure sign of strength.”
  2. “A good friend who points out mistakes and imperfections and rebukes evil is to be respected as if he reveals the secret of some hidden treasure.”
  3. “In the practice of tolerance, one’s enemy is the best teacher.”
  4. “Suffering should make us angry. This type of anger moves us towards a wrathful compassion to take action to end suffering.”
  5. “Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them, humanity cannot survive.”
  6. “True change is within; leave the outside as it is.”
  7. “If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.”
  8. “We can reject everything else: religion, ideology, all received wisdom. But we cannot escape the necessity of love and compassion. This, then, is my true religion, my simple faith. In this sense, there is no need for temple or church, for mosque or synagogue, no need for complicated philosophy, doctrine, or dogma. Our own heart, our own mind, is the temple. The doctrine is compassion. Love for others and respect for their rights and dignity, no matter who or what they are: ultimately these are all we need.”
  9. “Hatred expressed as anger will lead to destructive action, compassion expressed as anger leads to positive change.”
  10. “Compassion is the radicalism of our time.”
Dalai Lama speaking in front of an audience

Dalai Lama Happiness Quotes

  1. Happy people build their inner world, unhappy people blame their outer world.”
  2. “If you make others happy, you’ll be happy. If you make others unhappy, you’ll be miserable.”
  3. “I believe compassion to be one of the few things we can practice that will bring immediate and long-term happiness to our lives. I’m not talking about the short-term gratification of pleasures like sex, drugs or gambling (though I’m not knocking them), but something that will bring true and lasting happiness. The kind that sticks.”
  4. “The purpose of our lives is to be happy.”
  5. “Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions.”
  6. “Human happiness and human satisfaction most ultimately come from within oneself.”
  7. “People take different roads seeking fulfillment and happiness. Just because they’re not on your road doesn’t mean they’ve gotten lost.”
  8. “The ultimate source of my mental happiness is my peace of mind. Nothing can destroy this except my own anger.”
  9. “Everything you do has some effect, some impact.”
  10. “When we feel love and kindness toward others, it not only makes others feel loved and cared for, but it helps us also to develop inner happiness and peace.”

Find other happiness quotes by other authors.

Dalai Lama Quotes on Kindness

  1. “My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness.”
  2. “Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.”
  3. “If you have to choose between being kind and being right, choose being kind and you will always be right.”
  4. “One of the basic points is kindness. With kindness, with love and compassion, with his feeling that is the essence of brotherhood, sisterhood, one will have inner peace. This compassionate feeling is the basis of inner peace.”
  5. “There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness.”
  6. “When we feel love and kindness toward others, it not only makes others feel loved and cared for, but it helps us also to develop inner happiness and peace.”
  7. “Foolish, selfish people are always thinking of themselves and the result is always negative. Wise persons think of others, helping them as much as they can, and the result is happiness. Love and compassion are beneficial both for you and others. Through your kindness to others, your mind and heart will open to peace.”
  8. “Whether or not we follow any particular spiritual tradition, the benefits of love and kindness are obvious to anyone.”
  9. “The true essence of humankind is kindness. There are other qualities which come from education or knowledge, but it is essential, if one wishes to be a genuine human being and impart satisfying meaning to one’s existence, to have a good heart.”
  10. “The more you nurture a feeling of loving kindness, the happier and calmer you will be.”

Dalai Lama Quotes on Peace

  1. “Every morning when I wake up, I dedicate myself to helping others to find peace of mind. Then, when I meet people, I think of them as long term friends; I don’t regard others as strangers.”
  2. “Do not let the behavior of others destroy your inner peace.”
  3. “If you wish to experience peace, provide peace for another.”
  4. “Where ignorance is our master, there is no possibility of real peace.”
  5. “We can never obtain peace in the outer world until we make peace with ourselves.”
  6. “The true hero is one who conquers his own anger and hatred.”
  7. “If every eight-year old in the world is taught meditation, we will eliminate violence from the world within one generation.”
  8. “The question of world peace, the question of family peace, the question of peace between wife and husband, or peace between parents and children, everything is dependent on that feeling of love and warmheartedness.”
  9. “World peace must develop from inner peace. Peace is not just mere absence of violence. Peace is, I think, the manifestation of human compassion.”
  10. “When we have inner peace, we can be at peace with those around us. When our community is in a state of peace, it can share that peace with neighboring communities.”
Dalai Lama waving at crowd

Dalai Lama Quotes Never Give Up

  1. “There is a saying in Tibetan, ‘tragedy should be utilized as a source of strength.’”
  2. “To remain indifferent to the challenges we face is indefensible. If the goal is noble, whether or not it is realized within our lifetime is largely irrelevant. What we must do therefore is to strive and persevere and never give up.”
  3. “When we meet real tragedy in life, we can react in two ways – either by losing hope and falling into self-destructive habits, or by using the challenge to find our inner strength.”
  4. “This generation has a responsibility to reshape the world. Start the task even if it will not be fulfilled in your lifetime. Even if it seems hopeless now, never give up. Offer a positive vision, with enthusiasm and joy, and an optimistic outlook.”
  5. “Sometimes things go wrong, that’s normal, but we have a saying in Tibetan, ‘Nine times fail, nine times try again.”
  6. “If we are demoralized, sad and only complain, we’ll not solve our problems. If we only pray for a solution, we’ll not solve our problems. We need to face them, to deal with them without violence, but with confidence – and never give up. If you adopt a non-violent approach, but are also hesitant within, you’ll not succeed. You have to have confidence and keep up your efforts – in other words, never give up.”
  7. “Never give up. No matter what is happening, no matter what is going on around you, never give up.”


We hope that these inspiring Dalai Lama quotes offered you a new perspective on life. In this article, you discovered some of the best Dalai Lama quotes on kindness, never giving up, life, peace, happiness, and much more. We hope that you take some time to reflect on these quotes to help you live a more mindful and peaceful life.

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