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My Land and My People: The Original Autobiography of His Holiness the Dalai Lama of Tibet

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Schooled behind ancient palace walls to become the leader of Tibet, the Dalai Lama has become a spiritual leader to the world and a leading civil rights advocate. My Land and My People tells the story of his life.


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Schooled behind ancient palace walls to become the leader of Tibet, the Dalai Lama has become a spiritual leader to the world and a leading civil rights advocate. My Land and My People tells the story of his life.

30 review for My Land and My People: The Original Autobiography of His Holiness the Dalai Lama of Tibet

  1. 5 out of 5

    Ashley

    I'm kind of torn on what I think about this book. On one hand I feel kind of jipped. The first few chapters were marvelous, and ridiculously interesting, but then it became 100% political. I feel as though I can recount every single detail of the struggle between Tibet & China. I feel as though I bought an autobiography, but ended up reading about politics. On the other hand...I'm not sure I can really fault the Dalai Lama for that. I mean...that is his life, right? Seeing as how I (obviously) si I'm kind of torn on what I think about this book. On one hand I feel kind of jipped. The first few chapters were marvelous, and ridiculously interesting, but then it became 100% political. I feel as though I can recount every single detail of the struggle between Tibet & China. I feel as though I bought an autobiography, but ended up reading about politics. On the other hand...I'm not sure I can really fault the Dalai Lama for that. I mean...that is his life, right? Seeing as how I (obviously) side with Tibet in that struggle, I didn't so much mind- it was very informative & interesting to see it from his perspective...and had it been in another book I probably would have absolutely loved it...but I bought this book- the "original autobiography of His Holiness The Dalai Lama" just for that...the autobiography. I was interested in learning more about him, as a person. But again, that being said, when you're leading a nation like he is, I imagine it's difficult to separate yourself as a person, and as a leader- especially when the vast majority of your life has revolved around your leadership. So yes...I'm not sure what I was expecting, but in that sense it was somewhat disappointing. But, for the record, it was an incredibly interesting account of his early life, and later on his personal struggle while attempting to lead Tibet through their greater struggle. Solid read- I will definitely be continuing my exploration of the Dalai Lama, Tibetan culture, and their struggle under Chinese oppression.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Tenzin Deckyi

    This is one heart-wrenching story. Although I grew up hearing almost every details mentioned in the book, like any other Tibetan kid born into exile, reading the book written by the very man made it a whole new story. It overwhelmed me, tore my heart and had me weep. You come to realize that your life and all those self-acclaimed tragedies that you have so far made a list of, doesn't come as near to what His Holiness had to experience. If anything, you are just an undeviating product of what hap This is one heart-wrenching story. Although I grew up hearing almost every details mentioned in the book, like any other Tibetan kid born into exile, reading the book written by the very man made it a whole new story. It overwhelmed me, tore my heart and had me weep. You come to realize that your life and all those self-acclaimed tragedies that you have so far made a list of, doesn't come as near to what His Holiness had to experience. If anything, you are just an undeviating product of what happened to Tibet and to the Dalai Lama more than 50 years ago. On the one hand, this book has made me aware of my significance, my role as a Tibetan and my belonging to this tragic modern history of my fatherland. Yet, on the other hand, it has humbled me down, almost making me feel negligible to my own eyes, like the meaning of my own life and that of my father’s and mother’s has really come to have nothing if it wasn’t for our Tibet and His Holiness. This is a must read for anyone who is interested in Tibet, His Holiness and our struggle for genuine autonomy.

  3. 4 out of 5

    kista

    An amazing book! Held back tears in every page and let them flow when I was finished. Written in a manner that shows and tells the true emotions and motivations behind the Dalai Lamas actions during the time of the first years of Chinese occupation. His Holiness is such an amazing human, a true inspiration. His softness and kindness is truly something spectacular and extraordinary in this world. Makes you wonder- what would the world be like if we'd all be like this. My favourite book of all tim An amazing book! Held back tears in every page and let them flow when I was finished. Written in a manner that shows and tells the true emotions and motivations behind the Dalai Lamas actions during the time of the first years of Chinese occupation. His Holiness is such an amazing human, a true inspiration. His softness and kindness is truly something spectacular and extraordinary in this world. Makes you wonder- what would the world be like if we'd all be like this. My favourite book of all times- definitely.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Tatum Theaman

    I must first say that this is not the exact version I read (I read an early version printed in 1962), but it's the version of this book I could find. This book was possibly the most incredible, beautiful, and heart-breaking book I have ever read. We've all at least heard bits and pieces of the story of the Chinese invasion of Tibet, but I have never heard it told in such a heart-wrenching manner, and yet, there is no bitterness. The Dalai Lama tells the story of not just the invasion, but of his I must first say that this is not the exact version I read (I read an early version printed in 1962), but it's the version of this book I could find. This book was possibly the most incredible, beautiful, and heart-breaking book I have ever read. We've all at least heard bits and pieces of the story of the Chinese invasion of Tibet, but I have never heard it told in such a heart-wrenching manner, and yet, there is no bitterness. The Dalai Lama tells the story of not just the invasion, but of his childhood and his culture, and I was awestruck by the beauty he describes. The Dalai Lama states clearly in the opening that it is not his intention to make people hate the Chinese. He tells the story from the point of a Tibetan, so you only get one side of the story. However, he expresses no hatred or ill-feelings towards the Chinese. He says many times how much he admires Mao Tse-tung, and the Chinese people, calling them "charming" and "civilized" and saying that they would be "bitterly ashamed" if they truly knew what was happening. He tells his story as honestly as he can, and at times I found myself actually liking Mao Tse-tung, which is an incredible thing for a piece of writing to do: make you change feelings that you believed were set in stone. Hearing the story from any one else, I find myself almost immediately loathing the Chinese and everything they stand for, but the Dalai Lama is so benevolent and kind that I just couldn't bring myself to think the way I had before. Instead I began to feel sorry for them, and even began to understand the reasoning being what they did. I found myself no longer hating, but being almost understanding. The writing was equally as beautiful and painful as the story. He begins by telling the story of his people and his culture. He tells the story of how he came to be recognized as the Dalai Lama, and how he grew up after knowing who he was. You get bits and pieces of explanation about Buddhism: not so much that you find yourself in the middle of a religious lecture, but just enough so that you understand why he and his people think the way they do. Soon he gets into the political side of things. You see things not only through the eyes of a religious figure, but through the eyes of a boy who has never had this much pressure thrust upon him, but who knows he must do good for his people. You follow him through his interaction with the Chinese and you see how he responds, which in itself is surprising, at least, in the sense that most people would not handle that situation as calmly as he did. His diction is one of the most amazing aspects of the writing. He was able to send me on all kinds of emotional roller coasters; from sadness to happiness to joy to pain, and often, to tears. He uses absolutely beautiful language to describe a terrible situation. Just with his words, he has able to sway my view, not to mirror the views of one side or another, but to sway me away from one-sided thinking and to view the situation from both the view of the Tibetan people, and the view of the Chinese. I would absolutely, without a doubt recommend this to anyone. It was incredible and worth the read. It was truly enlightening.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Lora Shouse

    This is the original autobiography of the Dali Lama. Written in the early 1960’s it ends just a few years after he was driven from his native Tibet by the Chinese. The book includes not only his own story, but, of necessity a brief history of the Tibetan people, the Chinese invasion of Tibet, and a recounting of the resolutions filed in the United Nations after the Dali Lama’s exile asking to have Tibet restored to the Tibetan people. The story of the Dali Lama’s early life was especially interes This is the original autobiography of the Dali Lama. Written in the early 1960’s it ends just a few years after he was driven from his native Tibet by the Chinese. The book includes not only his own story, but, of necessity a brief history of the Tibetan people, the Chinese invasion of Tibet, and a recounting of the resolutions filed in the United Nations after the Dali Lama’s exile asking to have Tibet restored to the Tibetan people. The story of the Dali Lama’s early life was especially interesting, as was the account of his attempted kidnapping by the Chinese just before it was decided that he should leave the country for good. The account of the attack on the city and people of Lhasa was particularly vivid. Some years ago, at the time of a further attack on the Tibetan people by the Chinese, some of my friends wondered why the Chinese found it necessary to attack the Tibetans so viciously, a people whose primary form of aggression appears to be debating Buddhist principles. In this book, the Dali Lama gives what he believes to be the reasons for this. They are, in brief, 1. With so many people, the Chinese were looking for more land, and they saw Tibet as a relatively large, sparsely populated country they could use. 2. They thought there was a great wealth of mineral riches in the mountains of Tibet that the Tibetans had never tapped because they saw no need for them. 3. (The main reason) they saw Tibet as a strategic location from which they could more easily dominate other countries in Asia. In addition to the main story, the book contains appendixes covering a short explanation of Tibetan Buddhism and the texts of several documents and letters concerning the early requests for U.N. resolutions relating to Tibet.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Roniq

    The Dalai Lama is coming to Seattle. Woo Hoo!!! This is a truly incredible book for learning about the culture of Tibet and the struggles and domination the country has endured as a result of Chinese occupation, in addition to having an insight into the man who would become the Dalai Lama. I learned so much reading this book. His story is amazing, from a very young age (four and a half) he journeyed to Lhasa and was recognized as the 14th Dalai Lama, the Temporal and Spiritual leader of Tibet. Hi The Dalai Lama is coming to Seattle. Woo Hoo!!! This is a truly incredible book for learning about the culture of Tibet and the struggles and domination the country has endured as a result of Chinese occupation, in addition to having an insight into the man who would become the Dalai Lama. I learned so much reading this book. His story is amazing, from a very young age (four and a half) he journeyed to Lhasa and was recognized as the 14th Dalai Lama, the Temporal and Spiritual leader of Tibet. His upbringing and schooling, the description of the Potala where he lived, how and why the occupation took place and the affect it had on the people of Tibet, and even his letters to the United Nations pleading for help are included here. I found some of this book very sweet in it's own special way, and at moments I was in tears. All in all there is a thread of optimism in it for the future of Tibet. Yet it was hard for me to read and not feel so much emotion and down right anger at times. I highly recommend this book though, especially in light of recent events in Tibet. There is also an Appendix at the back of the book labeled "An outline of the Buddhism of Tibet" which is extremely informative for anyone wanting to learn more about Buddhism in Tibet A Quote from the Dalai Lama in "My Land and My People": "We all have a special responsibility to help create a better world, because material progress alone is clearly insufficient for a happier human society. No one loses, and everyone gains by a shared universal sense of responsibility to this planet and all living things on it".

  7. 5 out of 5

    Catherine

    Although I knew the broad outlines of what happened to TIbet in the mid-twentieth century, I had no idea the exact details, and I'm grateful to have read this book and to have a sense of exactly what was done, what was lost, and who gave their lives under such difficult circumstances. I also value the look at Tibetan life before the Chinese invasion - especially for beautiful moments of contradiction, like the Buddhist belief that it's wrong to take a life, but their commitment to eating meat, r Although I knew the broad outlines of what happened to TIbet in the mid-twentieth century, I had no idea the exact details, and I'm grateful to have read this book and to have a sense of exactly what was done, what was lost, and who gave their lives under such difficult circumstances. I also value the look at Tibetan life before the Chinese invasion - especially for beautiful moments of contradiction, like the Buddhist belief that it's wrong to take a life, but their commitment to eating meat, requiring that certain people live in their communities as butchers (cheerfully labeled as sinners too)! The Dalai Lama seems to narrate the events of 1950-1960 from a distance - not simply the literal one of being settled in Indian by the time the book is penned, but an emotional distance, or at least a narrative one. He tells us that he feels sad, feels despondent, feels frightened (and how glad I am to know that the Dalai Lama struggles with those things too!) but he never shows us - and I think that's what I wanted the book to do; to show me what it felt like to endure Chinese invasion, to try and govern, to search for the best policy, to worry for the lives of the ordinary Tibetans who would ultimately be massacred, and to maintain Buddhist practice - compassion, peace - at the same time. I am perhaps asking too much - after all, the Dalai Lama's exile was fresh as he wrote, and I know only too well how distance is a survival tool to make it through trauma. I am glad to have read this; I'll definitely search out more.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Dmitri

    In addition to being an eyewitness to 20th century history, the 14th Dalai Lama is a central figure in that history. His authorship of this book alone renders it a historical document of some significance. But beyond that, this a well written and captivating description of the life of Tibet and the Lama before and after the revolution of 1949. It traces the events surrounding his birth, youth, education, rule, overthrow and exile without an excess of religious dogma or political polemics. First In addition to being an eyewitness to 20th century history, the 14th Dalai Lama is a central figure in that history. His authorship of this book alone renders it a historical document of some significance. But beyond that, this a well written and captivating description of the life of Tibet and the Lama before and after the revolution of 1949. It traces the events surrounding his birth, youth, education, rule, overthrow and exile without an excess of religious dogma or political polemics. First published in 1962 following his 1959 flight to India, this memoir remains a compelling and readable primary source. There is a political message at the end that seems unnecessary.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Phayvanh

    It's amazing that there are people in the world who have to go through ordeals such as one that the 14th Dalai Lama had to. Exiled since he was 13, but serving his days as a holy man since the day he was born basically, this story, told in his own words, gives a very touching and emotional narrative of his life , leading into exile. I was very moved by his exile story, how reading it gave me more insight into my own parents' story during the American-Vietnam conflict, and how hard it must have be It's amazing that there are people in the world who have to go through ordeals such as one that the 14th Dalai Lama had to. Exiled since he was 13, but serving his days as a holy man since the day he was born basically, this story, told in his own words, gives a very touching and emotional narrative of his life , leading into exile. I was very moved by his exile story, how reading it gave me more insight into my own parents' story during the American-Vietnam conflict, and how hard it must have been for them to have left their homeland and the place they loved so dearly. I was filled with great sadness and empathy for him and all victims, direct or indirect, or politcal wars. This book made me long for another such autobiography, in the years to come, of the Dalai Lama, and his years in exile. I want to hear of his personal story, his life of practice and teaching, so far away from his Tibetan subjects. His outlook, apolitically, of what his future might hold....

  10. 4 out of 5

    PMP

    I thought "Freedom in Exile", the account more widely available in bookstores, was the definitive autobiography by HH the DL, untilI stumbled upon this in Dharamsala. The very last copy in a tiny bookstore was extricated from a dusty window display for me. Far more detailed, pained, immediate, reasoned than anything else I've read from or about HH. A mind-blowing piece of memoir writing in itself, where you can trace Buddhist practice in the very turn of a phrase. After he escaped from Chinese-o I thought "Freedom in Exile", the account more widely available in bookstores, was the definitive autobiography by HH the DL, untilI stumbled upon this in Dharamsala. The very last copy in a tiny bookstore was extricated from a dusty window display for me. Far more detailed, pained, immediate, reasoned than anything else I've read from or about HH. A mind-blowing piece of memoir writing in itself, where you can trace Buddhist practice in the very turn of a phrase. After he escaped from Chinese-occupied Tibet into India, HH was stunned to find hundreds of journalists waiting for him on the other side, wanting to capture "the story of the year." After reading this, I had a strong feeling that I held in my hands one of the greatest stories of the last century. A story that trails into the 21st century with its conclusion unwritten.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Leslie

    Interesting account by the Dalai Lama of his childhood and escape into India. Clear explanations of the political climate. Very objective. He's not a dramatic crybaby whining for his country. He is so dignified and peaceful. I am outraged at what China has done to Tibet. I wonder if the Tibetans will ever get to go home. Interesting account by the Dalai Lama of his childhood and escape into India. Clear explanations of the political climate. Very objective. He's not a dramatic crybaby whining for his country. He is so dignified and peaceful. I am outraged at what China has done to Tibet. I wonder if the Tibetans will ever get to go home.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Passang Dolma

    My land and my people is autobiography of his holiness the 14th dalai Lama. Translation was done by his interpreter Kazi sonam topgay and edited by David howarth. He writes of simple Tibetan life into which he was born and among whom he as the reincarnation of his predecessor , was discovered and declared dalai Lama according to his country ancient customs. In 1938 he was recognised as 14th dalai lama and then taken away  from his family and brought up in Lhasa according to a monastic regime of My land and my people is autobiography of his holiness the 14th dalai Lama. Translation was done by his interpreter Kazi sonam topgay and edited by David howarth. He writes of simple Tibetan life into which he was born and among whom he as the reincarnation of his predecessor , was discovered and declared dalai Lama according to his country ancient customs. In 1938 he was recognised as 14th dalai lama and then taken away  from his family and brought up in Lhasa according to a monastic regime of rigorous austerity and in total isolation. His intellectual curiosity and power of observation led him beyond traditional  Tibetan education system. When he was only twelve he was studying every piece of machinary on which he could lay hands. At same time he had serious and mature interest in the way of the outside world and he had also attempted to learn English.  At age of seven he was enthroned in potala palace as spiritual leader of  a nation with a population of six million and at fifteen ,he become head of the state. Tibet was the home of people  with strong individuality, conscious of their distinctive from neighbour in race and culture. It's historical relationship with China is fluctuating and undefined. And never to have justified the claim that  Tibet was part of China. The dalai lama emphasize that from 1912 until 1950 his country was enjoying real de facto independence. Dalai Lama's  account of invasion in 1950 ,of his visit to China and India and the disturbance and escape in 1959 are especially valuable, so are his comments on personality he met. It is dalai Lama's view that Chinese  seized Tibet with more or less clear aims of securing living space and because of  economics wealth and strategic value for the domination of Asia. In 1959 , finally he was forced into exile (followed by over 100000 refugees). since that time, in exile in Himalayan village of dharamsala , he has devoted himself to the plight of his people and to promoting world peace through unwavering policy of nonviolence.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Letitia

    This was unexpected and worthwhile. I was gifted with this volume when I worked with Tibetan refugees in Nepal. I expected the text to be propagandistic, but it wasn't. In fact, the Dalai Lama speaks of known atrocities with a measure of restraint, never delving into the truly horrible things that China did and is doing in Tibet. It is a controlled, tactful, reserved story of an exceptional person in exceptional circumstances. This might actually be the one weakness of the book. It simply doesn' This was unexpected and worthwhile. I was gifted with this volume when I worked with Tibetan refugees in Nepal. I expected the text to be propagandistic, but it wasn't. In fact, the Dalai Lama speaks of known atrocities with a measure of restraint, never delving into the truly horrible things that China did and is doing in Tibet. It is a controlled, tactful, reserved story of an exceptional person in exceptional circumstances. This might actually be the one weakness of the book. It simply doesn't explore either the personal or individual horrors of the period. I rarely enjoy autobiographies, as I find them self-aggrandizing, tone-deaf, and usually concentrated on minutia that doesn't matter to the reader in the slightest, though the writer clearly views it as important. This one could not be more different. In fact, if Sonam Topgay Kazi and David Howarth (translators and co-writers) want to teach a class on writing nonfiction, I'm sure it would be amazing. I thought frequently during the read that rarely have the words "for such a time as this" been more meaningful. The Dalai Lama leads with a grace and humility that few others would have shown in this historical context. Having read this, I have a greater understanding of Tibet, of China's imperialistic agenda, of the Dalai Lama himself. Enjoyed it far more than I expected to.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Choki Wangmo

    Most of the literature on Tibetan uprising couldn't really put into frame what the central government did during the crisis other than being a Chinese puppet. Many ended up accusing the government of being weak and inattentive to peoples' wellbeing. In his own words, the Dalai Lama, however brings into light what the government did and try to do during those times- the best decision was inaction to save Tibetans from brutal torture and death. It was unsuccessful because the Chinese did it their Most of the literature on Tibetan uprising couldn't really put into frame what the central government did during the crisis other than being a Chinese puppet. Many ended up accusing the government of being weak and inattentive to peoples' wellbeing. In his own words, the Dalai Lama, however brings into light what the government did and try to do during those times- the best decision was inaction to save Tibetans from brutal torture and death. It was unsuccessful because the Chinese did it their way whether the head of the state followed the compassionate way or not. The writer, in a unbiased way doesn't blame anyone for Tibet's fate but collective merit of the Tibetans. He doesn't even blame the controversial figure Ngabo Ngawang Jigme who was said to have betrayed his own country during the invasion. Vivid and engaging, the book is a good read and makes the Tibetan stand clearer, more so because it came from the leader himself, who lived through the atrocities.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Kevin Considine

    A thoroughly engaging read with the Dalai Lama telling the story of his being discovered as the reincarnation of the 13th Dali Lama at the age of 4. I most enjoyed the stories of his boyhood and preparation to be the spiritual and political leader of Tibet and the Tibetan people. The book transformed from an autobiography of the Dalai Lama to more of a history of China’s invasion, oppression, and eventual genocide of the Tibetan people. Sad to think that the Tibetan people will at some point soo A thoroughly engaging read with the Dalai Lama telling the story of his being discovered as the reincarnation of the 13th Dali Lama at the age of 4. I most enjoyed the stories of his boyhood and preparation to be the spiritual and political leader of Tibet and the Tibetan people. The book transformed from an autobiography of the Dalai Lama to more of a history of China’s invasion, oppression, and eventual genocide of the Tibetan people. Sad to think that the Tibetan people will at some point soon be a minority in their own country, without freedom to worship as they choose. Free Tibet! Perhaps the most interesting and useful section is Appendix 1. An Outline of the Buddhism of Tibet. Here the Dalai Lama acknowledges that all followers of religions seek the same goal and thus we should develop tolerance and Unity among religions. And he encourages all of us to learn something of all religions.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Arjun warrier

    There is so much more Tibet than what we read about it.The book elaborates upon a Leaders plight of reflecting upon his people struggle to be recognised as a soveriegn country and the price they had to pay against the Chinese political and armed take over in the 1950s. Despite their own set of troubles,the Tibetan people even today embrace Buddhism as the way of Life and have distanced themselves from their colonialists. It's a fight the Tinetans have been fighting at international forums and co There is so much more Tibet than what we read about it.The book elaborates upon a Leaders plight of reflecting upon his people struggle to be recognised as a soveriegn country and the price they had to pay against the Chinese political and armed take over in the 1950s. Despite their own set of troubles,the Tibetan people even today embrace Buddhism as the way of Life and have distanced themselves from their colonialists. It's a fight the Tinetans have been fighting at international forums and committees for decades. Extracts of letter to UN and other international entities display the pain and agony this peace loving Nation had to go through(and are still experiencing ) in today's Modern World. In a gist, it's a Leaders written testament in which he had showcased the plea of his people to the international forum, which his people face, even today.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Jim Breslin

    Hey guys, I just finished reading this book by the Dalai Lama and I'm starting to think our country isn't on the correct path to achieve Enlightenment. Seriously though, the Dalai Lama's autobiography covers up to the early 1960s and is worth reading. I was fascinated by the selection process that led to their realization that he was the reincarnation they were searching for. It was insightful to read about the invasion of Tibet by China, how the Tibetans formed a Resistance, how the UN failed t Hey guys, I just finished reading this book by the Dalai Lama and I'm starting to think our country isn't on the correct path to achieve Enlightenment. Seriously though, the Dalai Lama's autobiography covers up to the early 1960s and is worth reading. I was fascinated by the selection process that led to their realization that he was the reincarnation they were searching for. It was insightful to read about the invasion of Tibet by China, how the Tibetans formed a Resistance, how the UN failed to help negotiate peace, and how close the Dalai Lama came to being killed by the Red Army before fleeing to India. The story is worth knowing. Check it out.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Ashton

    Interesting perspective on the invasion into Tibet. Truly awful how Tibetans were treated, but it felt less like an autobiography and more a political stance against the Chinese. It also was a bit of a lull in parts because perhaps it’s the religion and nature of being a Dalai Lama but it was written almost as if he did no wrong ever and I think it made the book less interesting because it was hard to see character development.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Philip

    His Holiness' first memoir, written only three years after escaping Tibet and setting up his government in exile. As such, much more "unfiltered" than his later books, such as Freedom in Exile. His Holiness' first memoir, written only three years after escaping Tibet and setting up his government in exile. As such, much more "unfiltered" than his later books, such as Freedom in Exile.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Keith

    Was hoping for more info into the belief system of buddhism. Given to me by a coworker. Started off interesting with how the Dalai Lama is chosen but I started to lose interest once it became more political towards the end.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Subramaniam Krishnan

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. The book was a beautiful insight into His Holiness' early days. He writes about his challenges as a young boy thrust into a leadership position due to political strife. All he wanted was spiritual growth and he got political battles. The book was a beautiful insight into His Holiness' early days. He writes about his challenges as a young boy thrust into a leadership position due to political strife. All he wanted was spiritual growth and he got political battles.

  22. 5 out of 5

    George K. Ilsley

    A text written with the energy and context of unfolding events. There was a youthful idealism here -- that the UN would help Tibet, that China would be amenable to reason.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Csk

    good

  24. 4 out of 5

    Audrey

    I thoroughly enjoyed this book, it was written with such tenderness, love, and kindness.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Tenzin Seldon

    I think that every speech of His Holiness the Dalai Lama's are very useful to our life I think that every speech of His Holiness the Dalai Lama's are very useful to our life

  26. 4 out of 5

    Neil Crowle

    Very good read, full of insights into the whole situation in Tibet following the Chinese entry. The comments on the attitudes of various world leaders to Tibet's situation were also interesting. Very good read, full of insights into the whole situation in Tibet following the Chinese entry. The comments on the attitudes of various world leaders to Tibet's situation were also interesting.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Brett

    This book was written some time ago and although it's often referred to as the sort of quintessential account of the siege of Tibet, I don't think it really stands up to others I've read. It's a good, quick read. It's not a great book. It seems to suffer most from a lack of flow and cohesion. Plus, I think his holiness often has to err on the side of diplomacy and 2nd person accounts because of his position and his perspective on the situation. It may be a result of translation but there is a de This book was written some time ago and although it's often referred to as the sort of quintessential account of the siege of Tibet, I don't think it really stands up to others I've read. It's a good, quick read. It's not a great book. It seems to suffer most from a lack of flow and cohesion. Plus, I think his holiness often has to err on the side of diplomacy and 2nd person accounts because of his position and his perspective on the situation. It may be a result of translation but there is a definite shift half way through in narration and the book feels a bit disjointed. That being said, the first half is a great account of His Holiness's rise to the seat of the Dalai Lama and it's quite interesting to hear from the Lama's mouth what his life was like before and after China, which is what I think the true merit of this book is.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Tad Saffarally

    The life of His Holiness the Dalai Lama of Tibet is very obscure to most people. The Dalai Lama of Tibet is a very prominent and also controversial figure. However many people do not really know about him. 'My Land and My People: The Original Autobiography of His Holiness the Dalai Lama of Tibet' is a very honest story about His Holiness the Dalai Lama. It talks about his upbringings to his life at present day and how the political situation of his country has affected him. I would reccomend thi The life of His Holiness the Dalai Lama of Tibet is very obscure to most people. The Dalai Lama of Tibet is a very prominent and also controversial figure. However many people do not really know about him. 'My Land and My People: The Original Autobiography of His Holiness the Dalai Lama of Tibet' is a very honest story about His Holiness the Dalai Lama. It talks about his upbringings to his life at present day and how the political situation of his country has affected him. I would reccomend this book to anyone interested in learning about and getting insight to the life of the Dalai Lama. I would also reccomend this book to anyone interested in Tibet, its culture and its people. I learned a lot about the Dalai Lama straight from a primary source. After reading this book, I had not a single question left about the Dalai Lama. His autobiography was very thorough.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Megan

    While reading this book, I was struck by several things. First, the Dalai Lama XVI is one of those rare people whose patience and wisdom from such a young age is truly remarkable, and this is an example of the right person at the right time. Second, throughout the book there is a tone of hope that a peaceful solution can and will be found. It's now been over 50 years, and he and 60,000 other Tibetans are still in exile. Third, the power of rhetoric ("reactionaries", "expansionist imperialists") While reading this book, I was struck by several things. First, the Dalai Lama XVI is one of those rare people whose patience and wisdom from such a young age is truly remarkable, and this is an example of the right person at the right time. Second, throughout the book there is a tone of hope that a peaceful solution can and will be found. It's now been over 50 years, and he and 60,000 other Tibetans are still in exile. Third, the power of rhetoric ("reactionaries", "expansionist imperialists") is astonishing and baffling when seen in black and white on the page. Glad to know more about the struggle that Tibet has had, as the original events were before my time. Also glad that this impressive man shared his thoughts and experiences for me to read.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Varsha

    I am a little confused about this book. Though it is an autobiography of the Dalai Lama, I felt I learnt more about Tibet than about the person. A nice succinct history of Tibet- told from his eyes but I did not get a peek into who the Dalai Lama was as a person. It felt like a reluctant biography. Maybe translated versions can never capture the essence of the original and at times the writing seemed like a literal translation which wasn't very captivating. I read somewhere "To preserve a becomi I am a little confused about this book. Though it is an autobiography of the Dalai Lama, I felt I learnt more about Tibet than about the person. A nice succinct history of Tibet- told from his eyes but I did not get a peek into who the Dalai Lama was as a person. It felt like a reluctant biography. Maybe translated versions can never capture the essence of the original and at times the writing seemed like a literal translation which wasn't very captivating. I read somewhere "To preserve a becoming brevity which excludes everything that is redundant and nothing that is significant- that surely is the first duty of the biographer". I felt a lot of significant aspects were missing; ranging from things Iike his birth name to his feelings about his position and his spiritual journey.

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