The Dalai Lama As of February 19, 2010
Origins of the 14th Dalai Lama • Upon the death of the 13th Dalai Lama in 1933, visions and signs pointed to where the next Lama might be found. In the small village of Kumbum, a search party discovered young LhamoThondup (the future TenzinGyatso, above), who displayed familiarity with objects belonging to his predecessor.
Lhamo Thondup was declared the new Dalai Lama in 1939. He was taken to Lhasa, the capital of Tibet, in 1940, where his name was changed to Jamphel Ngawang Lobsang Yeshe Tenzin Gyatso and he began his spiritual education.
In this photograph, the young Tenzin Gyatso poses with his mother. The Dalai Lama's parents had 16 children, 9 of whom survived. His brother Thupten Jigme Norbu is also recognized as the High Lama Taktser Rinpoche.
During the 1950s, the new Communist government of China gradually took control of Tibet. Their refusal to respect the sanctity and authority of the Dalai Lama led to a resistance which was crushed by the Chinese army, forcing TenzinGyatso and his followers to flee across the Himalayas, where this photo was taken, to India.
By 1959, the Chinese assumed complete authority over Tibet. In this photograph, Chinese soldiers block the border with India, part of a failed effort to stop the Dalai Lama's escape.
The Dalai Lama's spiritual home is the Potala Palace. He has not lived there since 1959.
Since his exile to India, Tenzin Gyatso has labored to draw attention to the Chinese occupation of Tibet and bring the message of Tibetan Buddhism to the rest of the world.
Many celebrities, Richard Gere most notable among them, have taken up his cause.
At a 1986 prayer for peace organized by the Vatican in Assisi, the Dalai Lama joins from left: The Archbishop of Canterbury Robert Runcie, Orthodox Archbishop Methodius and Pope John Paul II.
Presently the Dalai Lama resides in Dharamsala, India. In this photograph, he meditates in the offices of the government in exile.
Every year, thousands travel to India to pay their respects to His Holiness. At the core of the Dalai Lama's political message is the belief that global peace cannot begin until each person has attained inner peace.
China strongly protested President Obama’s meeting with the Dalai Lama. Images of his trip to the USA and meeting with President Obama:
His Holiness Comes to WashingtonThe Dalai Lama arrived in the US capital on February 17, where he will begin a trip throughout the United States.
The meeting with the president, held in the Map Room, not the Oval Office, was closed to the press, but the White House released this frame to the media.
After his meeting with the President, the Tibetan leader emerged to speak to the press, pausing to touch the snow that had gathered on the bushes outside the White House.
After touching the snow, the Dalai Lama grabbed a handful and tossed it into the air.
The Dalai Lama told members of the media that he and Obama discussed human rights and the promotion of religious harmony.
During the Tibetan leader's visit, many of his supporters gathered outside the White House.
The Tibetan leader was greeted by members of the Tibetan community outside the Park Hyatt Hotel, where he is staying while in Washington.
According to White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs, the President "stated his strong support for the preservation of Tibet's unique religious, cultural and linguistic identity and the protection of human rights for Tibetans in the People's Republic of China." China has strenuously objected to the meeting.