Your tax-deductible donation will help Tibet House US finish production and publication of Man of Peace: the Illustrated Life Story of the Dalai Lama as part of its educational work on behalf of Tibetan culture.

The story of the Fourteenth Dalai Lama, the world’s foremost proponent of peace and nonviolence, as depicted in this full-color graphic novel, tells in its second and third parts of his educational training in childhood to ascend to the height of Buddhist learning and the political leadership of Tibet. He attains maturity and bodhisattvic power just in time to cope head-on with the invasion and occupation of Tibet by Communist China. The clash of implacably opposed cultural forces over the years of occupation leads finally, in 1959, to the young Dalai Lama’s escape, with his family and closest followers, into exile in India.

The fourth and fifth, concluding parts relate the life of His Holiness in exile, as spokesperson for the vast community of Tibetan exiles now established in countries around the world. Still longing for return to an autonomous, if not independent homeland, the Dalai Lama and his people deal with unrelenting hardships while continuing to live the Tibetan lifestyle of compassion, devotion, and indefatigable good cheer.After trying to maintain an uneasy coexistence with the Chinese for nine years after their invasion of Tibet, His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama, his life in danger, escapes across the Himalayas into India and establishes the Tibetan exile community. In Dharamsala are his monastery, the Tibetan government-in-exile, and its cultural institutions; across the breadth of India is a network of settlements and monasteries preserving the culture and curricula of those destroyed by Tibet’s Chinese occupiers.

Taking Buddha as his mentor, and Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King as his inspiration, he commits his life to mastering the enlightenment teaching, increasing mutual understanding between world religions and scientific humanists, and nonviolently liberating the people of Tibet from the suffering of Chinese colonization. Unable at first to prevent the Tibetan resistance fighters from engaging in violent opposition to the occupation, he feels a deep concern for them. Knowing their cause to be futile, he finally persuades them to lay down their arms, but only when they are abandoned by America and on the verge of being overwhelmed by the armies of China and Nepal.

The realpolitik of Britain, Nehru’s India, and the United States prevents the Dalai Lama for decades from publicly appealing to the world about the devastation of Tibet. President Nixon makes a deal with Mao Tse-tung, and global corporations begin seeking wealth from China, regardless of how the Communist dictatorship treats its own people and the citizens of its colonies. Only after Mao dies is the Dalai Lama able to make the full extent of his nation’s plight known.

Having mastered the most advanced Buddhist teachings and practices, he has come into his full glory as a teacher of the Mahayana Buddhadharma, both to Tibetans and to all humanity. He travels the world, visiting and developing close relationships with spiritual leaders such as Thomas Merton, Pope John Paul II, and Archbishop Desmond Tutu, as well as political heroes like Nelson Mandela and Václav Havel.

When Deng Xiaoping takes the reins in China, there is hope that some agreement can be reached to improve the lives of the Tibetans. Striving to make peace with the occupiers, the Dalai Lama declines to make a forceful claim to regain the historic independence that Tibet once retained on its high plateau.

After Deng ceases to cooperate and punishes those who would support a more liberal policy with Tibet, the Dalai Lama turns
to the U.S. Congress in 1987, proposing a Five-Point Peace Plan
that would establish Tibet as a demilitarized Zone of Peace. In the European Parliament, he definitively renounces any demand for full independence, agreeing formally to remain a part of China for the foreseeable future, provided that his people are granted genuine autonomy to preserve their culture, their freedom, their environment, and their economy. But after the Tiananmen Square massacre and
a period of mass suppression throughout China, the dictatorship of Deng Jiaoping, Jiang Zemin, and Hu Jintao remains determined to exploit the land of Tibet, even if it means destroying its environment and exterminating its people and their culture.

Awed by his extraordinary response to extreme oppression, at a time of almost universal upheavals of violence between nations, the international community honors his life and work with the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989. Throughout the increasingly hopeful 1990s,  with the Berlin Wall going down, the USSR withdrawing from Eastern Europe, the Cold War ending, and apartheid collapsing, he expands his international travels and teachings.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama of Tibet gradually realizes that to save Tibet, he must help to save the world—which needs a culture of peace, nonviolence, and healing to achieve a new, more peaceful, just, and sustainable way of life on earth. Will nonviolence succeed, when violence has failed everywhere so spectacularly? This is the great question of our time! The Dalai Lama’s life of tireless struggle for the good, the intelligent, and the practical stands out as a beacon of hope for us all.

— William Meyers & Robert Thurman