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His Holiness The Fourteenth Dalai Lama: An Illustrated Biography

Nominated | Book Awards 2021 | English Non-fiction

His Holiness The Fourteenth Dalai Lama: An Illustrated Biography

Full Title: His Holiness The Fourteenth Dalai Lama: An Illustrated Biography

Author: Tenzin Geyche Tethong
Publisher: Roli Books

Award Category: English Non-fiction
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: 

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.


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