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His Holiness The Dalai Lama Of Tibet

The Dalai Lama is a monk of the Gelug or "Yellow Hat" school of Tibetan Buddhism,

the newest of the schools of Tibetan Buddhism founded by Je Tsongkhapa.The 14th and current Dalai Lama is Tenzin Gyatso.

The Dalai Lama is considered to be the successor in a line of tulkus who are believed to be incarnations of Avalokitevara,

the Bodhisattva of Compassion, called Chenrezig in Tibetan.

The name is a combination of the Mongolic word dalai meaning "ocean" and the Tibetan word (bla-ma) meaning "guru, teacher, mentor".

The Tibetan word "lama" corresponds to the better known Sanskrit word "guru".

From 1642 until the 1950s (except for 1705 to 1750), the Dalai Lamas or their regents headed the Tibetan government or Ganden Phodrang

which governed all or most of the Tibetan plateau from Lhasa with varying degrees of autonomy, up to complete sovereignty.

This government also enjoyed the patronage and protection of firstly Mongol kings of the Khoshut and Dzungar Khanates (1642 1720)

and then of the emperors of the Manchu-led Qing dynasty (1720 1912).

Despite his humble beginnings, being born on a straw mat in a cowshed to a farmer's family in a remote part of Tibet,

the 14th Dalai Lama had become the joint most popular world leader by 2013, according to a poll conducted by Harris Interactive of New York,

which sampled public opinion in the USA and six major European countries.

The 14th Dalai Lama was not formally enthroned until 17 November 1950, during the Battle of Chamdo with the People's Republic of China.

In 1951, the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan government were forced to accept the Seventeen Point Agreement for the Peaceful Liberation of Tibet

by which it became formally incorporated into the People's Republic of China.

Fearing for his life in the wake of a revolt in Tibet in 1959, the 14th Dalai Lama fled to India, from where he led a government in exile.


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