Robert Thurman is the Jey Tsong Khapa Professor of Indo-Tibetan Buddhist Studies at Columbia University. Upon the Dalai Lama’s request, he co-founded the American Institute of Buddhist Studies, whose scholars currently are translating and publishing the Tibetan Tengyur collection, volume by volume with Columbia University Press, as the Treasury of the Buddhist Sciences.

Thurman is the translator of The Tibetan Book of the Dead (Bantam Books, Inc., 1993), and author of many other books, including Inner Revolution: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Real Happiness (Riverhead Trade, 1999), The Central Philosophy of Tibet: A Study and Translation of Jey Tsong Khapa's Essence of True Eloquence (Princeton University Press, 1994), Brilliant Illumination of the Lamp of the Five Stages: Practical Instructions in the King of Trantras, The Glorious Esoteric Community (Columbia University Press, 2011), Wisdom and Compassion: The Sacred Art of Tibet (Harry N. Abrams, 2000), and Why the Dalai Lama Matters: His Act of Truth as the Solution for China, Tibet, and the World (Simon and Schuster, 2008), among others.

With Richard Gere and Philip Glass, among others, Thurman co-founded Tibet House U.S., which is dedicated to the preservation and renaissance of Tibetan civilization. He recently founded the Menla Mountain Retreat Center in the Catskill Mountains to advance the healing arts and life sciences of the Indo-Tibetan Buddhist medicine tradition.

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02.22.14

What Can the Dalai Lama’s White House Visit Actually Accomplish?

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On February 21, the Dalai Lama visited United States President Barack Obama in the White House over the objections of the Chinese government. Beijing labels the exiled spiritual leader a "wolf in sheep's clothing" who seeks to use...