The Dalai Lama’s My Spiritual Journey presents this Buddhist’s life with extraordinary love, compassion and foresight. It’s amazing to understand how at age two as a child he was discovered through established traditional norms to be the spiritual leader of Tibet. Raised in a monastery under a regent the 14th Dalai Lama assumed his responsibility at the age of sixteen when the Chinese first invaded his ancestral home.
After failed negotiations with the People’s Republic of China the Dalai Lama escaped via the Himalayas Mountains to India. While in Indian Territory with some eighty thousand refugees they re-established Tibet as a refugee nation under the auspices of the Indian government. From their external home in Dharamsala the Dalai Lama persevered in an ongoing campaign with the Chinese officials for Tibet to be returned to Tibetans as an independent country.
All these negotiations failed although the Dalai Lama spelled out a Five-Point Peace Plan and had even agreed to drop its demands of an independence homeland to that of having a truly authentic and autonomous state. But the People’s Republic of China viewed the Tibet-in-exile government with suspicion, and thought that their sole intention was to gain independence for Tibet.
Since the 1950’s to the early 2000’s Chinese brutality has continued with thousands of Tibetans losing their lives, wounded, and imprisoned. Many Tibetans have continued to flee Tibet to neighboring countries, and died as they attempted to make their way via the Himalayas Mountains. And China has relocated many more Han Chinese to the Tibetan region where they have now outnumbered Tibetans whose culture, language, and ecological means of living have been decimated.
But Tenzin Gyasto, Tibet’s spiritual leader has continued his campaign for their homeland. As head of their government-in-exile he has received multiple awards and honorary degrees, including the Congressional Gold Medal and Nobel Peace Prize in recognition of his message of peace, nonviolence, interreligious understanding and compassion.