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Sunday, 31 August 2014

Dalai Lama

The Dalai Lama is a religious figure in Tibetan Buddhism. He is its highest spiritual teacher of the Gelugpa school.

"Dalai" is original from Mongolian which means "ocean" and "Lama" is original from Tibetan which means "the highest principle".

A new Dalai Lama is said to be the re-born old Dalai Lama. The line goes back to 1391.

Between the 17th century and 1959, the Dalai Lama was the head of the Tibetan government.

The current Dalai Lama is His Holiness Tenzin Gyatso (b July 6, 1935). He was born Lhamo Dondup on July 6, 1935 on a straw mat in a cowshed to a farming and horse trading family.

He was formally enthroned on November 17, 1950, during the Chinese invasion of Tibet.

In 1959, the Dalai Lama had to flee from Tibet to Dharamsala, India. This is still his base today.

The Dalai Lama was on the CIA's payroll from the late 1950s until 1974, reportedly receiving $180,000 a year.

The Dalai Lama shook hands with Pope John Paul during a private audience in Vatican City on October 9, 1980.

The Dalai Lama was awarded the Noble Peace Prize on October 5, 1989, for his nonviolent campaign to end Chinese domination of Tibet.  He accepted it "on behalf of the oppressed everywhere and all those who struggle for freedom and work for world peace and the people of Tibet."

The Dalai Lama has a hobby of collecting and repairing watches and loves photography, and developing his own photographs.

Dalai Lama in 2012 by *christopher* - Flickr: Wikipedia Commons
Unlike most Buddhist monks, the Dalai Lama is a meat eater. In the 1960s, he tried being vegetarian for a bit but had to give it up after he got sick with hepatitis.

The Dalai Lama alternates between vegetarianism and meat eating. If he is in the company of meat-eaters, he is happy to eat meat. The White House once offered him a vegetarian menu and he declined.

The Dalai Lama is frightened of caterpillars.

Even though the Dalai Lama can’t swim, his greatest fear is being eaten by a shark.

Source Wikipedia

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