• Sushma Ramesh

His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama, by Tenzin Geyche Tethong

  • Book Name: His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama

  • Author: Tenzin Geyche Tethong

  • Publisher: Rolibooks India

  • Price: 1295 INR

  • Available On: Amazon

About the Book:

This beautifully illustrated chronicle presents an in-depth, first-hand narrative of the Dalai Lama’s life story and the Tibetan saga. From remembrances of those close to him, and a treasure trove of over 400 images of Tibetan visual heritage, it preserves a record of what it was like to create a nation from nothing, in exile, and how his Holiness rallied endlessly for his people. A rich blend of biography, history, and legacy, it captures a detailed account of the tumultuous events through which the Dalai Lama was forced to chart a path, leading to his emergence as an international figure. It illuminates as well his initiatives in the wider world to relieve suffering, overcome global challenges, and foster human flourishing through compassionate universal ethics, working hand-in-hand with Science and ingenuity. Tendzin Choegyal was thirteen years old when he accompanied his elder brother, the Dalai Lama – twenty three at the time – on his dangerous 1959 escape to India. Decades later, he began encouraging his lifelong personal friend, Tenzin Geyche Tethong – for forty years his Holiness’ personal aide – to record their people journey. As ‘elders’ in the Tibetan community, they have collaborated with photo archivist Jane Moore and a creative team to produce a memorable, comprehensive, and close-up portrait. It provides, in these uncertain times, an uplifting retrospective of an iconic leader, a heritage, a cause, and a creative vision that have won the attention and hearts of people around the world.

About the Author ( taken from Amazon):

Tenzin Geyche Tethong has been a trusted companion and aide to His Holiness, the Fourteenth Dalai Lama, for over four decades and is part of a legacy of service; his own father was second in command of the Thirteenth Dalai Lama’s bodyguard and his forefathers were officially commended by the Dalai Lama for their service to Tibet. Born in 1943 in Lhasa, Tethong first joined the Tibetan administrative service in 1961 before being deputed to the Private Office of His Holiness the Dalai Lama three years later. He served in the Private Office until retiring in 2007 as Secretary (English Section). As part of his role, he worked as the Dalai Lama’s personal assistant, accompanying him on several official international visits, including his meeting with Pope Paul VI at the Vatican in 1973, his historic first trip to America in 1979, and the Nobel Prize ceremony in Oslo in 1989. In addition, he was Deputy Director of the Department of Information and International Relations and also established its first Department of Health in the 1980s. This is the first time that he has written about his remarkable years as one of His Holiness’ closest aides.

My take on the Book:

I’m sure there is no one in this world who doesn’t know about The Dalai lama. He is the highest spiritual leader of Tibet and is considered a living buddha all over the world. But, how many of us know the tale of his recognition as the 14th Dalai Lama, from being called Tenzin Gyatso. How many of us know his exile story to India. How many of us know his story of becoming the peacemaker in world history. Certainly, not all.

‘His holiness the fourteenth Dalai Lama’ is one such Biography about the most powerful Buddhist monk in the world where it puts light on all the things one should know about if he/she wants to learn more about his holiness’s life in depth. Not just that, this memoir also talks about Tibetan heritage, culture, and a Buddhist monks’ lifestyle very precisely. Written by someone very close to his holiness himself, this book makes it a wonderful memoir about the greatest Buddhist monk in the world.

What distinguishes this biography from the rest of other biographies written on his holiness is that it is completely illustrated. Even though it’s a huge book, because of these illustrations, it doesn’t make you feel uninterested even for a bit. Some of the illustrations are so realistic that it made me gasp and stare at its magnificence, and because of these same illustrations, this book becomes extremely beginners friendly. One other thing that caught my eyes is the quotes written by his holiness himself before the start of each section that I absolutely loved and this book is a complete package of beauty to behold.

Looking back at this biography, it is not an exaggeration to say that his holiness is truly one of the greatest living inspirations in this world, and the way he led his life dedicating it to his people, his country, and his culture is legendary. Just holding this book, reading about the portrayal of this influential international leader made me uplift my mood in these critical times, and I have this strong zeal in me to contribute things to my people and country now. Recommending it to everyone!

Overall Ratings: 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟