Dalai Lama Essay, Research Paper
The Dalai Lama
By developing a sense of respect for others and a concert for their welfare, we reduce
our own selfishnes. which is the source of all problems, and enhance our sense of
kindness which is a natural source of goodness.
-14th Dalai Lama
His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, is the spiritual
leader of the Tibetan people. He was born on July 6, 1935 in a small
village called Taktser in north-eastern Tibet. He was named Lhamo
Dhondrub, and at the age of two he was recognized as the
reincarnation of the 13th Dalai Lama.
In 1935, the regent of Tibet went to the sacred lake of Lhamo
Lhatso where he had visions of where to search for the 14th Dalai
Lama. The secret visions included many signs, among them a
monastery with roofs of jade green and gold, and a house with
turquoise tiles. Lama Kewtsang Rinpoche of Sera Monastery was put in
charge of a search party. They found a place which matched the
description of the secret vision seen in the waters of Lhamo Lhatso; the
place was called Amdo. Kewtsang Rinpoche disguised himself as a
servant, and wore a mala that had belonged to the 13th Dalai Lama.
The junior official Lobsang Tsewang was disguised as the leader.
The search party found the house with turquoise tiles and asked
to meet the special little boy. Immediately, upon seeing the mala, the
little boy recognized it and asked that it be given to him. Kewtsang
Rinpoche promised to give him the mala if he could guess who he
was. The boy replied that he was “Sera aga,” which in the local dialect
means “a lama of Sera. ” The boy also correctly identified and named
the leader and a servant. Then the boy was put through a series of
tests that included identifying various articles that had belonged to the
13th Dalai Lama. All other signs of the secret vision also fit perfectly,
and the search party was convinced they had found the reincarnation
of the 13th Dalai Lama. The 14th Dalai Lama was enthroned in 1940.
His Holiness The Dalai Lama started his education at the age of
six. At 24, he successfully completed the preliminary examinations at
the following three universities: Drepung, Sera, Ganden. At 25, he took
his final examination in the Jokhang, Lhasa, and was awarded the
highest Geshe Lharampa Degree (Doctorate of Buddhist Philosophy).
His Holiness assumed political power in 1949 and 1950. He went
to Beijing in 1954 and participated in peace talks with Mao Tse-Tung
and other Chinese leaders, including Deng Xiao-Ping. After Chinese
troops suppressed the Tibetan National Uprising in Lhasa in 1959, The
Dalai Lama was forced into exile. Since then, His Holiness has been
living in Dharamsala, India, the seat of the Tibetan
In the interest of promoting peace, His Holiness appealed to the
United Nations on the question of Tibet. The UN General Assembly
adopted three resolutions in 1959, 1961, and 1965, calling on China to
respect the human rights of Tibetans and their desire for
self-determination. In 1992, His Holiness issued a Policy document
which states that he will give up his historical and political authority
and live as a private citizen when Tibet regains its independence.
In 1987, His Holiness proposed a Five Point Peace Plan as a
peaceful solution to the deteriorating conditions in Tibet. His vision is to
make Tibet into a world sanctuary — a peace zone in the heart of Asia
where all beings can exist in harmony, and where the environment is
protected and can flourish for generations to come.
In 1989, His Holiness was awarded The Nobel Prize for Peace for
his policies of non-violence and his peaceful struggle for the liberation
of Tibet. He is the first Nobel Laureate to be recognized for his concerns
for global environmental problems.
The Tibetan Government-in-Exile was established in Dharamsala,
India by His Holiness, and contains many reforms. The
Government-in-Exile is based on modern democratic principles, and
has three branches of government: executive, legislative, and judicial,
with a clear separation of powers.
There is a Kashag (Council of Ministers), which in the highest
executive authority. The Kashag comprises various departments, such
as: Home, Education, Finance, Health, International Relations, etc. The
Assembly of Tibetan People’s Deputies (ATPD) select the members of
The ATPD (Parliament) is the legislative branch of the Tibetan
Government-in-Exile. It established the Charter of Tibetans in Exile, the
current constitution of the Tibetan Government-in-Exile. The Tibetans in
exile have universal suffrage and directly elect the ATPD.
The Tibetan Supreme Justice Commission is the highest judicial
branch and guardian of the Charter of Tibetans in Exile. This
commission address all grievances that are made against the
Administration. In 1963, His Holiness presented a democratic
constitution as a model for a free Tibet. This constitution is based on
Buddhist principles and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
During the past 36 years in exile, he has continually stressed the need
to further democratize the Tibetan Government-in-Exile, and has
introduced various democratic reforms. There are over 130,000
Tibetans in exile, many living in India and Nepal and in more than 33
different countries in the West. Tibetans in exile have endeavored to
gain experience in the democratic system of government, and have
worked hard to establish various religions and cultural institutions to
preserve and promote their identity.
The Central Tibetan Administration, with the assistance of the
government of India and various international voluntary organizations,
has successfully rehabilitated Tibetan refugees in agricultural centers,
agro industrial settlements, and handicraft centers throughout India
and Nepal. There are Tibetan schools in India, Nepal and Bhutan, with
a student enrollment of 23,000.
The Norwegian Nobel Committee awarding the prize to The
XIVth The Dalai Lama, said : “The committee wants to emphasize the
fact that The Dalai Lama in his struggle for the liberation of Tibet
consistently has opposed the use of violence. He has instead
advocated peaceful solutions based upon tolerance and mutual
respect in order to preserve the historical and cultural heritage of his
His Holiness, accepting the Nobel Peace Prize, remarked: “The
prize reaffirms our conviction that with truth, courage, and
determination as our weapons, Tibet will be liberated. Our struggle
must remain non violent and free of hatred.”