Guest / Limited Access /
His official titles are "Jetsun Jamphel Ngawang Lobsang Yeshe Tenzin Gyatso," meaning "Holy Lord, Gentle Glory, Eloquent, Compassionate, Learned Defender of the Faith, Ocean of Wisdom."

After Pope John Paul II and Billy Graham, he is probably the most recognized religious figure on our planet. He is the voice of Buddhism to the nations and is often called the "god-king" of Tibet. He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989. His recent books, Ethics for a New Millennium and The Art of Happiness became best-sellers. He is treated with immense respect by secular media and draws crowds up to 300,000 at his public talks.

These titles and accolades belong to Buddhism's leading apostle, the Dalai Lama. Born as Lhamo Thondup in 1935 in northeast Tibet, he was chosen as the 14th Dalai Lama (Tibet's highest religious figure) at age 2. He was enthroned in 1940 and became political leader of Tibet at age 15, just after Mao's armies began their takeover of Tibet. In exile since 1959, the Dalai Lama has become a world leader in ethics, politics, and religion.

He has also become the de facto leader of millions of spiritual seekers in the West. Christians who want to evangelize our culture do well to understand the extent of his influence, especially in pop culture, as well as the nature of his beliefs. To this end Christianity Today sent me to the Dalai Lama's home-in-exile in Dharamsala, India, to ask him about the popularity of Buddhism, his faith's relation to other faiths, and, most of all, what he thinks about Jesus.

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

From Issue:
Read These NextSee Our Latest
Also in this Issue
Subscriber Access Only
Plus: Blood and Tears in Tibet
The Dalai Lama says he appreciates Christian attempts to address persecution in his homeland
RecommendedHow I Escaped the Mormon Temple
How I Escaped the Mormon Temple
After being in the LDS Church for 30 years, I began reading the New Testament. What was there shocked me.
TrendingBlessed Are the Agnostics
Blessed Are the Agnostics
How I learned to see my unbelieving husband through God’s eyes.
Editor's PickWhy the Local Church Is Trending Up
Why the Local Church Is Trending Up
We needn't be afraid about the future of our congregations.
Christianity Today
Hollywood's Idol
hide thisJune 11 June 11

In the Magazine

June 11, 2001

To continue reading, subscribe now for full print and digital access.