Dalai Lama: Larger than life, profoundly human
October 20th, 2010
10:04 AM ET

Dalai Lama: Larger than life, profoundly human

I try to make it a practice not to name drop, but on Monday I spent a half-hour talking to the Dalai Lama. It wasn’t exactly a private affair—2,000 people more or less were in the audience listening, but one of the remarkable things about big meetings with the Dalai Lama is that once you start talking with him you get this eerie feeling that he and his translator are the only people in the auditorium.

Why are so many of us profoundly moved in his presence?  Well, first off, one of his most often used titles is “kundun” which in Tibetan simply means “presence."  So that’s the first thing. But on a more down-to-earth level, I think all of our expectations are scrambled when we run into one of the most famous people in the world who says whatever he pleases and acts however he wants.

Before we all went on stage, the Dalai Lama noticed a portly cameraman. Suddenly he escaped the circle of burly Secret Service agents surrounding him and ambled over to the bewildered fellow. The Dalai Lama patted him on the shoulder and then began rubbing his big belly. “Happy Buddha!” he shouted in English, roaring with laughter.

There is a powerful downside to the Dalai Lama’s completely liberated behavior. If he doesn’t like or agree with what you’re saying he’ll tell you so in no uncertain terms. There are stories of famous scientists thinking they were going to get a rave review and instead the Dalai Lama devastated their pretensions with one simple question or observation.  And if what you are saying is not of interest to him you can see his mind drift off to wherever minds like his go. Then he’ll look at his wrist watch to see how much longer he has to endure it.

So I was as prepared as I could be for any type of reception and felt my hands shake when I began showing him our data on how compassion meditation appears to help reduce stress hormones in teenagers in foster care. The data were far from perfect—what would he do? To my immense relief his eyes misted up a little when he saw what we had done and he began to nod enthusiastically. “Yes, yes” he said “Very good, very good.”

I felt the thrill one gets when the ultimate father-figure gives you a smile and pat on the back. In the moments of silence after my talk before I stood up to allow the last speaker to sit next to him in the “hot seat,” I noticed the old scuffed-up brown shoes and purple socks the Dalai Lama always wears. On this day, he quietly untied his shoes while the first speaker was talking and tucked his sock-clad feet up under himself. Then at the end of the day when he figured it was about time to go, and while the last speaker was holding forth, he pulled his shoes out, stuck his feet in and tied his shoe laces. It was such a human act that I found it profoundly moving. What must it be like to have that level of internal freedom and self-confidence?

soundoff (93 Responses)
  1. Suzanne

    I hate Twitter – but I subscribe to the Dalai Lama's feed because everything that gets posted is uplifting without being Pollyanna-ish, observant without being patronizing, and constructive without being critical. This man has a grasp of the human spirit like no other. I admire him.

    October 20, 2010 at 10:38 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Brian

      Agreed. His twitter feed is what makes a bad day good, and a good day better.

      October 20, 2010 at 13:17 | Report abuse |
    • Grant

      Where do I find the Dalai Lama's twitter feed?

      October 20, 2010 at 13:23 | Report abuse |
    • Lew

      I don't care for Twitter, either, but based on your comments, I may actually consider using it...just to see his daily feeds.

      October 20, 2010 at 13:28 | Report abuse |
    • Constantine

      Nice – am following him now

      October 21, 2010 at 00:08 | Report abuse |
  2. john stebila

    discard your ego and come from a place of compassion and you to can be like this person.

    October 20, 2010 at 10:49 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Hubman


      October 20, 2010 at 13:20 | Report abuse |
    • Constantine

      Easier said than done – but worth it

      October 21, 2010 at 00:09 | Report abuse |
    • W247

      Agreed about discarding your ego and loving others compassionately more than loving yourself. This attitude was defined for me very simply when I study the life of Jesus.

      October 22, 2010 at 12:40 | Report abuse |
  3. Linda D.

    I thank the Supreme for having sent the Dalai Lama to be with us on this planet. His leadership is evident on all levels, emotional, mental, physical, & spiritual. He embodies compassion and wisdom and is like a lighthouse, shining its beacon for those who choose to follow his light hearted example of how to be.

    October 20, 2010 at 11:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Jason

    this business about taking off this shoes and tucking his feet under.. ..I could understand a western observer thinking it a big deal or unusual, but to Asians who find bear feet comfortable and normally sit cross legged, it is nothing special. Dr. Charles is so awed that every little thing seems special.

    October 20, 2010 at 11:59 | Report abuse | Reply
    • john stebila

      Indeed Jason, when we idolize such people their true meaning is lost

      October 20, 2010 at 12:16 | Report abuse |
    • SanFranGirl

      yes i agree that tucking/sit cross legged is 2nd nature to us, but i think what the author is trying to convey is the simplicity/informality of His Holiness.... no barriers... the approachability factor.

      October 20, 2010 at 13:08 | Report abuse |
    • Justsit

      It is not the unusual (to Western eyes) nature of sitting cross legged that elicited the author's comments. Rather, he recognized the very basic human goodness behind His Holiness' actions. Indeed, every little thing IS special, if one lives in awareness.

      October 20, 2010 at 13:22 | Report abuse |
    • Hello Dali!

      My feet, as far as I know, aren't interchangeable with bear feet. Otherwise I'd try it!

      February 1, 2011 at 19:20 | Report abuse |
  5. runswithbeer

    Yes, the Dalai-Lama is, in my personal experience, the only person I have ever had the good fortune to see in person who I would deem a truly special person. If the Universe has a creator(s) then this person has a link the rest of us have trouble understanding. If I were a devote Christian I would most likely believe that this person could well be Jesus in modern times. He has the aura of the Buddha around him. The Prophet would have loved him. He is a simple man of peace and understanding.

    October 20, 2010 at 12:43 | Report abuse | Reply
    • W247

      But the good news is that we all can have that link to the Creator of the universe. It is not just in "one man". If one takes the time to truly understand the love that the Lord has for them, then the peace that surpasses all – ALL – understanding will hit your heart as well. The problem is that we get caught up in the things of this world. that we allow to come in and aggravate us.

      October 22, 2010 at 12:45 | Report abuse |
  6. matt

    A big hitter the lama is......................

    October 20, 2010 at 13:13 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Constantine

      familiar with the force – he is

      October 21, 2010 at 00:10 | Report abuse |
  7. WTH

    Seriously, enough with the Dalai Lama lovefest. The greatest trick the Dalai Lama ever played on the world was convincing everyone that he was some sort of enlightened spiritual leader. What he really is, is a deposed head of state who wants to be running Tibet again, with the priesthood calling the shots and the peasants fetching and carrying.

    And by the way, I am in no way supportive of China's occupation of Tibet – I'd like to see them gone as much as the next guy. But for the average Tibetan, expelling the Chinese and putting the Dalai Lama back in power would just be replacing one supreme leader with another.

    October 20, 2010 at 13:23 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Shane

      I imagined an elegant response to your post. Instead, I realized that those who read your words and are educated about the issues you raise already know what I would say. Those who are not, and who chose to agree with you, would not be persuaded by any elegance to change their mind.

      October 20, 2010 at 13:50 | Report abuse |
    • LD

      I wish you could be in his presence with an open mind. Who knows what you might think? Negativity is the polar opposite of his existence. Maybe he'd help you out.

      October 20, 2010 at 14:04 | Report abuse |
    • Dechen

      you sound so dump. Dalai Lama is considered God to 99% of Tibetan People. Although He call himself simple bhuddist monk.
      Next time if you dont know the feelings of Tibetan people you should comment rubbish..

      October 20, 2010 at 14:05 | Report abuse |
    • Therese

      Lol, if you were to ever actually meet the Dalai Lama, you would realize that this man is not at all concerned with politcs and power. Most likely he would fetch you a cup of tea, then try to help you understand and overcome your anger.

      October 20, 2010 at 14:27 | Report abuse |
    • WTH

      Shane, you are right, there's no point to you posting, because I've read it all before. There is no end to the Dalai Lama lovefest.

      Prior to being deposed by the Chinese, the Dalai Lama was the theocratic ruler of stratified caste-defined society in which social mobility was essentially impossible. Tibet was a feudal society, with the peasants lorded over by the priesthood and the nobility.

      Of course, being under the thumb of the Chinese is probably not an improvement for the average Tibetan, but rest assured that if the Chinese could be expelled tomorrow, life for the average Tibetan would not change much. It doesn't matter if the head guy in charge is called "Comrade Leader" or "Your Holiness", you're still going to fetch and carry if you're a farmer or herder.

      The Dalai Lama's great genius was in understanding, and tapping into, the "new age" mentality of the Western world, and garnering a never-ending stream of sympathy and support from people who wouldn't be fit to wash his feet if they were his subjects in the country he used to rule. Seriously, I doubt the man can even belch or scratch his nose without an army of Western sycophants fawning over him, and trying to interpret the "enlightened" meaning of his latest word or gesture.

      I mean, feel free to swoon over a half-Marxist homophobic autocrat all you want, but I think I'll pass.

      October 20, 2010 at 16:19 | Report abuse |
    • Constantine

      See the good – in the usual suspects movie quote

      October 21, 2010 at 00:11 | Report abuse |
    • norbu

      dalai lama is not homophobic. http://ilga.org/ilga/en/article/782

      October 21, 2010 at 10:07 | Report abuse |
    • Hello Dali!

      You mean this isn't about Salvador Dali? 'scuse me, my bad.

      February 1, 2011 at 19:23 | Report abuse |
  8. Tanya

    Read Dalai Lama's books, and you'll find a clue to a happy life.

    October 20, 2010 at 13:26 | Report abuse | Reply
    • W247

      I would encourage you to study the bible and the life of Jesus Christ. A lot of the postings that I read from Dalai Lama are so very similar to what the Lord has already spoken to us about in the Bible. Already there, waiting for us to accept them and come to Him.

      October 22, 2010 at 12:47 | Report abuse |
  9. Grant

    What would you recommend as the definitive book on Buddhism.

    October 20, 2010 at 13:27 | Report abuse | Reply
    • diver


      October 29, 2010 at 18:06 | Report abuse |
    • Samara

      I know exactly what you mean. But, I do have my psnroeal views on this. When i look at Christ, I don't see it as Christianity . When i see Christ, I view it as the prime example of how a human being should be. living after Christ is being your purest form fully conscious of who you are and what your purpose is in life. Jesus was the first to understand this, then he became Christ. It would be dope if every human understood what Jesus understood.

      September 12, 2012 at 04:21 | Report abuse |
  10. vman

    thx for this article, good to read about something positive, and somebody inspiring, even you didnt say much..

    October 20, 2010 at 13:28 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. WolfsInSheepClothing

    Beware of Wolfs in sheep clothing.
    There's none righteous NO not one.

    October 20, 2010 at 13:37 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Neither-Wolf-nor-Sheep

      No one claimed he was perfect or righteous. He seems to be enlightened but since I haven'y met him, I don't know that as it relates to me. You might give God a bit of credit at times for using good people who are not of your faith to do His work. I'm sure God isn't constrained by your little box.

      October 20, 2010 at 13:50 | Report abuse |
    • Dechen

      you sound like communist puppet

      October 20, 2010 at 14:07 | Report abuse |
    • norbu

      little kid, don't sleep, don't rest. run far away fast, for the wolfinsheepclothing is coming to eat you. boo.

      October 21, 2010 at 09:20 | Report abuse |
    • W247

      I think I have mentioned this in a previous post but alot of the "Sayings" that i have seen attributed to the Dalai Lama can actualyl be found and should be rightly attributed to the life of Jesus Christ.

      October 22, 2010 at 12:49 | Report abuse |
  12. wow

    A few things:

    1- The Dalai Lama uses Twitter.

    2- @ matt- funny

    3- @WTH. You ignorance is appalling. But yea, I can see that warm, kind Lama really giving it to the "peasants" in Tibet, as that kind of behavior seems completely in line with every action or word eminating from him since he was young. FOOL

    4- As for the adoration of the DL, tell me WHO BETTER than somebody who extols peace, humanity, kindness and enlightenment? If you all are looking to the DL for 'conspiracy" you are a whack-job. In this country we've been so diluded that we give the real crooks a free pass, while we crap all over somebody who is actually doing their best to spread goodwill and enlightenment for their ENTIRE LIVES! please.

    October 20, 2010 at 13:44 | Report abuse | Reply
    • W247

      4. Explore having a relationship with Jesus, it's about the relationship, not about the religion. Peace, harmony, enlightenment for your soul, strength for your life.

      October 22, 2010 at 12:51 | Report abuse |
    • Doppleganger

      In an article about a Buddhist, why are you pressing your personal belief in Christianity so hard? There's no more evidence for your God than any of the other ones.

      The assault on the Dalai Lama in the discussions is appalling. He may not have a connection to any God, he may have been born into his role, doesn't change the fact that he is careful, cautious, and preaches tolerance and kindness to everyone. He has done enough to earn anyone's respect.

      October 27, 2010 at 03:22 | Report abuse |
    • Hello Dali!

      Diluded? Or diluted? Or maybe Deluded? Oh, I know, dilaudid!

      February 1, 2011 at 19:27 | Report abuse |
  13. ichigo

    i find it funny that people dont believe in god or jesus etc but somehow believe this guy is a reincarnation...same people dont even believe in spirit or host or reincarnation. he might be a good dude but i aint giving noone who breath air like me any special treatment unless they are some god and can prove it. he is just a human being, he is no god neither reincarnation...

    October 20, 2010 at 13:45 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Carter

      one thing and religion says aotnher in their minds. I can see how it causes many internal conflicts but gays shouldn't be the target of their words or acts as religion is about ones internal path and experience not about judging someone elses. There is no war on religion there is only the desire to live free from being dragged to death behind a pickup truck, free from being beaten in the streets, and free from being harassed in the work place which many Christian pastors, especially televangelists, contributed to by their unkind words and misinterpretation of the Bible's intentions. Nazi's didn't mind killing Jews either even though the Ten Commandments clearly says Thou shalt not Kill and certainly didn't think it was wrong until there was suddenly a price to pay and people were held responsible for atrocious acts of violence. Pastors need to and have a responsibility to make a clear, profound, and distinct division between the treatment of PEDOPHILES AND GAYS as they are not the same in any form or relational context and they have been falsely and wrongly portrayed as equals for eons. Kirk Cameron's must now take responsibility for the karma and his desire to voice his public opinions about gay rights being ultimately destructive . Those statements remained unexplained and unsupported from the media clips I have seen.

      September 13, 2012 at 23:25 | Report abuse |
  14. richard

    Q. Grant: What would you recommend as the definitive book on Buddhism.?
    A. "Buddhism Plain & Simple" by Steve Hagen – very readable, accurate, interesting. There are many other good books too.

    October 20, 2010 at 13:45 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mark

      i would second that, very good basics

      October 20, 2010 at 13:48 | Report abuse |
    • tinyprof

      Yes, that book is very good for an overview. Good place to start.

      October 20, 2010 at 16:06 | Report abuse |
    • wann2know

      A wonderful read is "Old Path, White Clouds" by Thich Nhat Hanh. Shows clearly that the Buddha was human, therefore offering us all hope of a little enlightenment.

      October 20, 2010 at 22:36 | Report abuse |
  15. nuts

    ...Cue the religious whack-jobs who try to make a devil out of one of the most Christ-like people on the planet.

    October 20, 2010 at 13:46 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Rendia

      "I will never understand why soomnee would go to a designated building on a designated day on a schedule to be close to their spirituality. I go to the temple when I need strength in numbers, but I live my spirituality every day. I don't need a building to tell me that." I'm not Buddhist, but I identify with it more than other religions. If you're ever in Chicago I'll gladly take you to my favorite temple if you're interested. It's a teaching temple, and their door is always open.

      December 17, 2012 at 11:15 | Report abuse |
  16. Mimi G of Toronto

    His Holiness the Dalai Lama always teaches every individual to be responsible. His message: Everyone has a responsibility in this world. To create world peace, one must always start from within oneself first, have a good heart, show compassion for all santient beings. Sadly, China feels threatened by this man of peace, whose main message is for peace and concern for human rights for all, not just for his people in Tibet.

    October 20, 2010 at 13:48 | Report abuse | Reply
    • W247

      Matthew 12: 29"The most important one," answered Jesus, "is this: 'Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one.[e] 30Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.'[f] 31The second is this: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'[g]There is no commandment greater than these."

      October 22, 2010 at 12:54 | Report abuse |
    • W247

      Matthew 22:36 36"Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?" 37Jesus replied: " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.'[b] 38This is the first and greatest commandment. 39And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'[c] 40All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."

      October 22, 2010 at 13:13 | Report abuse |
  17. Lisa

    Wow some people just don't get it. How sad for them...anyway.

    Grant..although this isn't a book on Buddhism "365 Dalai Lama: Daily Advice from the Heart" is a great book. It covers many different topics and when I don't know exactly how to deal with something or need a little something to put my day in a more positive light this book usually does the trick.

    October 20, 2010 at 13:54 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Hello Dali!

      Why quote Jesus and talk about Gawd? Buddhism is a philosophy, not a religion. Oh...maybe THAT'S why.

      February 1, 2011 at 19:32 | Report abuse |
  18. cel

    He is a most wise man. He has thought greatly about things most people wouldn't take the time to think about. Shame on us, bleesings on him.

    October 20, 2010 at 14:00 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Maz

      actually you do see my point now. cause that has been my point, if they adhere to the Lama's theacings then they become his followers. you initially said the contrary, that the Buddha himself said, don't take my word for it. Go find out for yourself. i'm simply saying that i wouldn't consider myself a devout follower. but you can if you'd like, i'm not here proselytizing or trying to convert otherwise. this is all very lively and i like exchanging thoughts with deep thinkers.

      September 11, 2012 at 04:37 | Report abuse |
  19. partly luminated

    The past 2 yrs of my life I lost all physical posessions [ execpt vehicles] the important thing is my family my children I begged for them to be left to me during this time, my wish granted. I still have performed random acts of kindness many times and these repay me with much satisfaction .. I believe I should study some more of Kunduns wisdoms to help keep the path of enlightenment and pass the light and peace to my children. I have some distance to go

    October 20, 2010 at 14:03 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Hello Dali!

      Enlightenment is the process of gradually uncrossing one's eyes. So, I'm guessing you're still wearing glasses?

      February 1, 2011 at 19:37 | Report abuse |
  20. Jon

    I went to go see the Dalai Lama speak at the University of Wisconsin – Madison a couple years ago. Even though I'm an atheist, I still appreciate meeting people from different cultures and people that are historically interesting. I don't buy his reincarnation story, and I don't think he is in any way divine, but I agree the world could always use a little more compassion.

    I can see what the author is getting at though, the Dalai Lama doesn't seem to act like most world leaders.

    October 20, 2010 at 14:10 | Report abuse | Reply
    • sanjosemike

      As another atheist, I do agree with you. However, this man's stature is the result of a highly and well organized public image campaign, which the Media has bought, hook, line and sinker. I'm sure he is a decent man. But we need to put him in perspective: China is simply waiting for him to die, to help take pressure off of efforts to free Tibet. Non-violence will NEVER free Tibet...and that's a real pity. sanjosemike

      October 20, 2010 at 16:04 | Report abuse |
  21. Therese

    The only time in my entire lifetime that I have felt true peace was at a sunrise meditation with His Holiness in Central Park. My mind was free from negative thought, my spirit was unburdened, and I felt at one with every living thing in the universe. It was the most amazing, surreal experience I've ever had. After meditation, as my boyfriend at the time and I were leaving the park, we walked in front of the car the Dalai Lama was riding in, he looked out the window at me, I looked at him, he smiled, and the essence of kindness, compassion, and joy permeated my being. I could do nothing but smile in return. I do not subscribe to any specific religion, but I know that there is something special and sacred about the Dalai Lama. If you are ever in his presence, you will know the same.

    October 20, 2010 at 14:15 | Report abuse | Reply
    • sanjosemike

      I'm glad for you. But the result of your adulation is from a highly managed marketing of this person. He is only human. You ascribed features to him that are the direct result of this marketing. I'm happy for you, but you have been the victim of a type of hypnosis. But..it's not illegal...and you should just enjoy it. But realize what it is. sanjosemike

      October 20, 2010 at 16:01 | Report abuse |
    • Max

      Well all of this is embedded into deep study. But herniag the Dali Lama's teachings would in essence require following him. It's the same with Christ's message. You hear it, understand it and act upon it. Remember what Jesus said, Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness and then again, the Kingdom of God is within you.

      September 13, 2012 at 23:04 | Report abuse |
  22. Mioh

    We all have Buddha nature. The Dalai Lama's job is to show us the way to recognize it in ourselves. He embodies the values of the Buddhist Way, and he does this in order to help us learn the values of compassion and how to live together. That is what the Dalai Lama's presence is and all the writer of the article is reacting to. Nothing in this has anything to do with God; even Buddha said so in his earliest writings. Anyone, regardless of religion or culture, can learn to live from their Buddha nature. So simple, and so profound.

    October 20, 2010 at 14:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. sanjosemike

    By all accounts, he is a decent man. His message of "non-violence" however will NEVER free Tibet from China. I'm not advocating a (new) war, but in fact, it is often those very "wars" that result in liberation. Tibet could never win a war with China, and it is unlikely that the West will pitch in, so I guess Chinese rule is here to stay.

    I tire of all the adulation afforded this person. He is (only) a human being. He is also an expert at "marketing" himself. If I met him, I'd simply like to call him by his given name. I don't mean to sound unreasonable, but the Chinese are simply waiting for him to die...and any efforts to free Tibet will just disappear. There is is no god and no gods. Human beings, no matter their illustrious behavior and adulation...are only human beings. When we're gone...we're gone. sanjosemike

    October 20, 2010 at 15:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. rossitta

    I have never seen him but I like the way he dresses and he wears no jewerly on the contrary to other religious people with expensive clothes, jewerly, etc. His message is of peace although sometimes peace is not enough to defeat the enemy.

    October 20, 2010 at 19:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. John

    I have no interest in a god-king who seeks to rule over serfs once again. Tibet has been a disaster when eft to rule themselves. The DL is a fraud.

    October 20, 2010 at 19:51 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Hello Dali!

      Well then being a Fraudian, you should follow him!

      February 1, 2011 at 19:39 | Report abuse |
  26. Good Guy, Bad Headline

    I'm a practicing Buddhit, love the Dalai Lama, but the headline on the homepage is so awful it sounds like it was written for The Onion:

    Dalai Lama: Apparently Not a Robot

    October 20, 2010 at 19:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. SopheapAng

    Dalai Lama, the former serfs owner (currently a CIA employee employed to bad mouth China) came up with a theory and supposed to have proved that reincarnation does exist. As a result, he was awarded a Nobel prize in BSting. Oba Mao, on the other hand, received his Nobel prize for his sending U.S. soldiers to commit crimes against humanity in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    October 20, 2010 at 21:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. wann2know

    When I attended the Dalai Lama's talks several years ago I was inspired by his wisdom and humility. But a much more accessible Buddhist achieved master is Thich Nhat Hanh, who offers poetic practical guidance for mindful living. The humans will need to learn to live mindfully for a future to be possible.

    October 20, 2010 at 22:33 | Report abuse | Reply
    • TD

      Used to be an admirer of Thich Nhat Hanh but no more. What a fraud he is. He had ruined the laborious work of many activists who had given their all to keep communist Vietnam on the list of CPC (countries of particular concern) by his ceremonious and widely publicized visit to the country in order to prove that it has religious freedom so it could be removed from the list to join the WTO. Even the Thich Quang Do, a Nobel Peace Prize nominee who has been put under house arrest since the 90's by the Vietnamese government refused Thich Nhat Hanh's request for a meeting. Even a good person would not lend a hand to such a regime let alone a Buddhist monk of Thich Nhat Hanh's stature. I urge everyone to do some research on this person before deciding to accept him as a mentor.

      October 21, 2010 at 22:49 | Report abuse |
  29. Constantine

    Geez – cant say im not jealous

    October 21, 2010 at 00:05 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. lola

    The Dalai Lama is both a political and spiritual leader. This causes many problems. Imagine if Pres Obama
    had authority in both areas. There are currently many problems created by the absolute authority of the Dalai
    Lama.This is not reported in the mainstream press for obvious reasons, or if it is not obvious than know that
    we are spoonfed by the press and to say anything against the Dalai Lama would never be reported. Do your own research. Buddhist understanding of wisdom is that the way things appear and how they actually exist are very different.

    October 21, 2010 at 01:57 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Zenere

      Ho letto attentamente i colnsgii. Gi per il primo mi ha messo in crisi. Io non ho per nulla il senso dell umorismo. Gi da bambino ero un disastro. L unica volta che ho fatto ridere i miei compagnetti stato quando sono andato sotto il tavolo per dare colpi con testa verso l alto. Loro hanno riso, ma mia mamma no perch poi ha dovuto portarmi al pronto soccorso con la testa rotta. Con le ragazze poi appena provo a fare una battuta l unica loro reazione una volgarit : "che cagata" (chiedo scusa). Se avessi tempo di pensarci a cosa dire forse sarei anche simpatico perch quando le cose me le dico da solo le trovo divertenti. Ma solo forse perch non ho ancora un mio senso dell umorismo.

      December 21, 2012 at 06:13 | Report abuse |
  31. alex65

    The headline of this article is misleading: The Dalai Lama is a God not human.

    October 21, 2010 at 16:37 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Hello Dali!

      Nope, no understanding here!

      February 1, 2011 at 19:41 | Report abuse |
  32. capnjammer


    It is wrong to idolize anyone, because no one is perfect.

    I may have never sat under the Dalai Lama, but I have been in the presence of a man whose eyes were cut out under the order of this supposed "holy man." You are all fools when you refuse to believe the facts that are put in front of your faces, and yet there was one commenter who called him God. All of your empty sycophantic drivel can't hold back the fact that this man has more blood on his hands than many who are alive today. Nevertheless, whether it be Jesus, or Abraham, or the Dalai Lama, or Mohammed, or Buddha, or Ghandi, or Mother Theresa, no one is willing to disbelieve when they hear something bad. Maybe more people should research someone before they choose to call them God. If everyone did that, this would be a better, more peaceful and happy world.

    October 21, 2010 at 17:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. NoHumanIsGod

    Buddhism and Dalai Lama are two different things. Buddhism is a philosophy like any other out there while Dalai is a human being like you or me. Mind you, there are at least four different sects in Buddhism and Mahayana being the one Dalai belongs to. Therefore it is logical to point out that Dalai Lama cannot be considered the supreme leader of Buddhist faith. . Moreover, when it came to succeeding the first to the fourteenth Dalai Lama how come it is always a Tibetan who get born as the next Dalai while there are millions of other Non-tibetan Buddhists among whom one could be picked the next Dalai. You see a bias right there.
    In order to understand what Tibet was like you have to read recorded account of history like Marco Polo's, to get a non-prejudiced knowledge of that land. Back then, It was a caste-based society with prosperous high-ranking monks, powerful warriors who thrived in symbiosis with the monks, and then the vast majority of poor peasants who lived hand-to-mouth. The dominant world media has painted such a saintly image of Dalai that it's hard for the public to shake it off. But when it comes to humanity perhaps, in recent times, the world has not seen the great ones to the likes of Gandhi, Mother Teresa or Pope John Paul II, to name a few.

    October 21, 2010 at 21:52 | Report abuse | Reply
    • capnjammer

      Gandhi = sexually deviant, although he is admittedly the best humanitarian on the list.

      Mother Theresa = obsessed with pain and death. Believed that by suffering her patients were getting closer to God, and she was getting closer to God by being around them. Stopped members of her team from working on children who could have been saved with extremely mild complaints, but who died because of the squalor she forced them to live in. Had millions of dollars available to her yearly in the Vatican coffers and instead of using it to buy medicine and hire doctors she started more of her Death Cults around the world. When touring the Killing Fields, she said "All is as it should be."

      John Paul II = helped child molesters escape their due and hid them in other child-rich parishes. Propagated the myth that homosexuality is evil and killed thousands by decrying prophylactic methods.

      No one is God. No one can claim to speak for God. No one is even close.

      October 21, 2010 at 23:34 | Report abuse |
  34. mike evans

    A peace that passeth understanding

    November 1, 2010 at 13:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. Mark

    The Dalai Lama does not present himself as god and is not seen by Tibetans in that way. There are no gods in Buddhism; hence the term "non theist religion"; the Buddha was just a man who reached spiritual enlightenment; Buddhists believe there have been many such Buddhas over time and that every person has at least some natural inclination in that direction, even if it may be hard to see.

    Tibetan Buddhists believe that he is the latest reincarnation of a great teacher of Buddhism, not a god. Other Buddhists who do not believe in reincarnation believe that he is simply a great teacher of Buddhism himself.

    November 2, 2010 at 12:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. sonam

    Nice article about his holiness. As i went about reading all d post n comments, i would like to clarify, he does not seek power if tibet will be free one day,n he never claims to be a god, one of d post says he will only believe if he shows some kinda power, what a silly thought. His holiness has never asked ppl to follow him, he is jus preaching basics of humanity, peace n love. being a tibetan it might sound a lil bit biased, but if you think from a simple human point of view its too hard to ignore his teachings.rest its all up to ya, if you want to contemplate about making dis world a lil bit better place to live or jus bragging about being atheist n passing silly comments. May god bless you all.

    November 26, 2010 at 07:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. TC

    The essential difference between Buddhism and other religions is that Buddhism teaches that enlightenment is within each of us and we have only to find it ourselves. Other religions teach that salvation comes from without; through Jesus or through God or Jehovah or Mohamed. To Buddhists, neither the Dalai Lama nor Buddha himself can save us. They are revered teachers but they are not, themselves, the way.

    January 4, 2011 at 19:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. TKAMB

    Coming from an Atheist who has studied religion: Dalai Lama has written extensively about his view on science. He is quoted to have said "This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness." The belief is that the mind is where everything originates. This is NOT a spiritual viewpoint. It is an explanation, backed up by psychology, that your mind holds the key to all life's questions. We are tied to nature yes, but not by some mystical force. We are creatures that have evolved with the planet. Live a stress free life will make you happy. It is in this regard that the Dalai Lama does not regard Buddhism as a religion but rather science. It is the evolution of a "Religion" into a Science. That same way that the belief of our solar system evolved from naive concepts of the planet being flat, to the current scientific evidence we see today. There is NO greater truth than the world outside. Take a look and actually think to yourself: "How would adding god to this make it better?" It wouldn't. God and religion complicates the natural beauty that has intrinsically been included in this planet.

    As a side note I do not want to see any comments about "How can the world be so beautiful unless it was created by some God". Just think to yourself this one concept. We are part of this system. We have evolved with it. It would inherently be beautiful to us. We are one and the same as nature. We see our lives through the lens of the evolution that has taken place in our minds. The word beauty is created by our minds and by the "evolution" of society. It is a term that we use to describe something.... natural or "beautiful". Just take a step outside your "worldly" view of religion and see the "world" as it is.

    January 23, 2011 at 13:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. Jessica

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  40. Jitendra

    I'd even further say that Christ is eynrvthieg that we see and what sustains life in itself, moreso than a savior. Jesus was the first to understand this and act on it, thus he became one with the Father. I like what the Dali Lama teaches but in my opinion he doesn't go further than that. Christ also taught conquering yourself, the world and ultimately the universe. If anything Jesus was quite the egotistical man. Unless of course i haven't looked much into the Lama's teachings

    September 11, 2012 at 21:23 | Report abuse | Reply
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  43. Tunglma

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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.

October 2010
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