Ha Vinh Tho, PhD to Present "From War Zones to the Happiness Country" as 2014 Cobb Peace Lecturer at Naropa University


Ha Vinh ThoBoulder, Colo. (January 8, 2014): Naropa University's sixth annual Bayard and John Cobb Peace Lecture will feature Ha Vinh Tho, PhD, program director of the Gross National Happiness Centre in Bhutan, and founder and chairman of Eurasia Foundation. The free public lecture will take place on Wednesday, February 19, 2014 from 12:00-1:30 p.m. at Naropa's Performing Arts Center, 2130 Arapahoe Avenue, Boulder.

 "From War Zones to the Happiness Country" with Ha Vinh Tho, PhD
WHEN: Wednesday, February 19, 2014, 12:00-1:30 p.m.
WHERE: Naropa University's Performing Arts Center, 2130 Arapahoe Avenue, Boulder
COST: Free and open to the public

How can Gross National Happiness in Bhutan contribute to creating an enlightened society? "From War Zones to the Happiness Country" will explore how engaged Buddhism can contribute to conflict resolution, reconciliation, and healing. "From Vietnam to Afghanistan and Darfur, my life has been intimately linked to war," explains Ha Vinh. "Working with the International Committee of the Red Cross, I have seen most of the armed conflicts of the past decade. As a Buddhist practitioner, I have tried to investigate how inner transformation can lead to social change [...] My endeavor at the GNH Centre is to create transformative learning experiences based on contemplative practices, to support people in finding ways to meet the individual and collective challenges of our time."

As program director of the Gross National Happiness Centre in Bhutan, Ha Vinh Tho is in charge of setting the learning objectives, as well as developing the curriculum and learning process for both Bhutanese and international participants. He also served as the head of training, learning, and development at the International Committee of the Red Cross from 2005 to 2011, and has trained humanitarian professionals working in war zones and emergency response in Asia, the Middle East, Africa, and Europe. Ha Vinh is also the founder and chairman of Eurasia Foundation, a humanitarian NGO developing educational programs for children and youths living with disabilities, as well as advancing ecological projects in Vietnam. Learn more about Ha Vinh Tho at his blog.

Conceived and endowed in 2007 by former Naropa University president John Whitehouse Cobb and his wife, Bayard, the Cobb Peace Lecture is designed to heighten awareness of peace-oriented philosophies and innovative conflict resolution strategies, ranging from psychological perspectives, to religious themes, to socioeconomic activism, and more. The lecture series has supported public talks with such luminaries as the Sakyon Jamgön Mipham Rinpoche; Sister Helen Prejean, CSJ; John Paul Lederach; Susan Griffin; and Claude AnShin Thomas. For more information, please contact Danielle Mason at 303-546-3595, or at .

Naropa University welcomes participants with disabilities. Please contact Danielle Mason at , or at 303-546-3595, to inquire about accessibility and disability accommodations needed to participate fully in this event.

Naropa University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and is a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. Naropa University is a private, nonprofit, nonsectarian liberal arts institution dedicated to advancing contemplative education. This approach to learning integrates the best of Eastern and Western educational traditions, helping students to know themselves more deeply and engage constructively with others. The university comprises a four-year undergraduate college and graduate programs in the arts, education, environmental leadership, psychology, and religious studies.