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The first authorised biography of His Holiness the Dalai Lama in 25 years, bringing his unique life fully up to date

The definitive biography

One of the best-known and respected public figures of modern times, The Dalai Lama’s message of peace and compassion resonates with people of all faiths and none. And yet, for all his worldwide fame, he remains personally elusive.

Alexander Norman, acclaimed Oxford-trained scholar of the history of Tibet and the Dalai Lamas, draws on his thirty years of special access to His Holiness to deliver the definitive biography – unique, revelatory, controversial.

Norman gives unparalled insights into the Dalai Lama's life, from being chosen as a young boy, his exile from Tibet and his involvement in political negotiations, to the present day. He confronts a dark history, revealing the spiritual and political leader as never seen before.


[Alexander Norman] knows the Dalai Lama probably better than any Englishman alive


Unlike the plethora of Hollywood meditators who claim friendship with the Dalai Lama, [Norman] has known him well for decades

Sunday Times

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Formats & editions

  • EBook


    September 7, 2017

    Ebury Digital

    464 pages

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