Dalai Lama Discussion Questions 1

While the Dalai Lama does write about food a little bit in this essay, you should be focused more on what he says about the characteristics of the complex problems (raised by science, technology and industry) that raise ethical concerns and his advice about the qualities ethical thinking must have in order to address those problems. Don’t get lost in his examples; instead, focus on the abstract, concept-language he uses to write and think about them.

  1. What are the characteristics of “the most urgent problems” facing humanity today? Your answer should not reference specific problems associated with genetics. In what ways are they challenging our ability to think ethically about them?
  2. What role can a non-specialist in genetics play in thinking ethically about the implications of genetics?
  3. What, for the Dalai Lama, is the role of emotions in ethical thinking? What would Hal Herzog say about the Dalai Lama’s position on emotions in ethical thinking?
  4. Here try to focus on the implications for your argument about the industrial food production system of the Dalai Lama’s argument about genetically modified food.  What is the Dalai Lama’s view about genetically modified food as a solution to the problems associated with industrial food production?