Dalai Lama


    In News

    The Dalai Lama, the spiritual head of Tibetans, marked his 87th birthday by inaugurating a library and museum in his hillside Indian headquarters.

    The Dalai Lama

    • The Dalai Lamas are believed by Tibetan Buddhists to be manifestations of Avalokiteshvara or Chenrezig, the Bodhisattva of Compassion and the patron saint of Tibet. 
    • Bodhisattvas are realised beings, inspired by the wish to attain complete enlightenment, who have vowed to be reborn in the world to help all living beings.

    14th Dalai Lama

    • His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, describes himself as a simple Buddhist monk. He is the spiritual leader of Tibet. 
    • He was born on 6 July 1935, to a farming family, in a small hamlet located in Taktser, Amdo, northeastern Tibet. 
    • At the age of two, the child, then named Lhamo Dhondup, was recognized as the reincarnation of the previous 13th Dalai Lama, Thubten Gyatso.

    Leadership Responsibilities 

    • In 1950, after China’s invasion of Tibet, His Holiness was called upon to assume full political power. 
    • In 1954, he went to Beijing and met with Mao Zedong and other Chinese leaders, including Deng Xiaoping and Chou Enlai. 
    • Finally, in 1959, following the brutal suppression of the Tibetan national uprising in Lhasa by Chinese troops, His Holiness was forced to escape into exile. 
    • Since then he has been living in Dharamsala, northern India.

    Democratisation Process

    • In 1963, His Holiness presented a draft democratic constitution for Tibet , followed by a number of reforms to democratise the Tibetan administration. The new democratic constitution was named “The Charter of Tibetans in Exile”.

    Peace Initiatives

    • His Holiness proposed a Five-Point Peace Plan for Tibet as a first step towards a peaceful solution of the worsening situation in Tibet.

    Universal Recognition

    • His Holiness the Dalai Lama is a man of peace. In 1989 he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his non-violent struggle for the liberation of Tibet. He has consistently advocated policies of non-violence, even in the face of extreme aggression. He also became the first Nobel Laureate to be recognized for his concern for global environmental problems.