Reading, discussion and reception for Why the Dalai Lama Matters with Robert Thurman.
Free event but space is limited. Please register at Tibet House.
Noted in a NY Times Magazine profile as “The Dalai Lama’s man in America,” and having been named by Time Magazine one of the “25 Most Influential Americans,” Robert Thurman has cultivated a worldwide awareness of Tibet through his writing, translation of important Buddhist texts, and activism. He is the co-founder with Richard Gere of and currently serves as the President of its Board of Trustees. Thurman has dedicated his life to the study and preservation of Tibet’s cultural heritage, and is the first American ordained as a Tibetan monk. All this along with his 45-year friendship with the Dalai Lama makes him the perfect voice for Tibet and its quest for freedom.
Thurman is also the President of the , a non-profit affiliated with the Center for Buddhist Studies at Columbia University. Having studied with His Holiness the Dalai Lama personally, Thurman was the first American monk of the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. He is credited with being at the forefront of making Tibetan spirituality, philosophy, and art accessible and understandable in the West. He has a B.A., A.M. and Ph.D. degrees from Harvard and has studied in Tibetan Buddhist monasteries in India and the United States. He is a popular professor in the Religion Department of Columbia University where he holds the Jey Tsong Khapa chair in Indo-Tibetan Studies. Policy makers and the news media often seek Thurman’s knowledge of Tibetan history and culture. In this capacity, he has testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
Time chose Thurman as one of its “25 Most Influential Americans” in 1997, describing him as a “larger than life scholar-activist destined to convey the dharma, the precious teachings of Siddhartha, from Asia to America.”
The New York Times recently said Thurman “is considered the leading American expert on Tibetan Buddhism.”
Daniel Goleman, author of Emotional Intelligence, has called Robert Thurman, “a living treasure, one of today’s most provocative spiritual thinkers.”
Added by Robert Thurman on June 16, 2008