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The Search for the Panchen Lama

3.76  ·  Rating Details ·  87 Ratings  ·  17 Reviews
In May 1995, a seven-year-old Tibetan boy, along with his parents and younger brother, was taken from his home by Chinese security services. Neither the boy nor his family has been seen since. His devotees believe him to be the eleventh incarnation of the Panchen Lama, the second most important incarnation in the Tibetan Buddhist hierarchy.In The Search for the Pachen ...more
Hardcover, 335 pages
Published May 3rd 2000 by W. W. Norton & Company (first published 1999)
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Bettie☯
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17:05:2015: China urged to release Panchen Lama after 20 years: Tibetan exiles are calling for China to release a high-ranking monk who disappeared 20 years ago when he was just six years old. The boy was detained by the Chinese authorities just three days after the Dalai Lama declared him to be the reincarnated Panchen Lama.
Laura
Jan 11, 2008 Laura rated it really liked it
Hilton does an excellent job of explaining all the historical and political complexities of the position of the Panchen Lama in Tibet. The book serves as a fascinating biography of the tenth Panchen Lama, and exposes the steps behind the recognition of the eleventh, and the inhumane steps the Chinese government took to discredit the Dalai Lama's true choice. I highly recommend this book for anyone with interest in Tibet.
Anne
Jul 16, 2013 Anne rated it it was amazing
This is a devastating and deeply researched account of how the Chinese government has brutally crushed Tibetan independence and spiritual traditions. I highly recommend this book for anyone who wants to understand the precarious situation of the Dalai Lama. It became clear to me after reading this book that, most likely, the 14th Dalai Lama will be the last.

The Panchen Lama and the Dalai Lama are the two most important spiritual leaders in Tibetan Buddhism. When one dies, the other confirms the
...more
Ambar
The 10th Panchen Lama himself it's a big mystery surrounding Tibetan political scene. He arguably very influential Lama after the Great Dalai Lama. The story really show how China repression into country based religious such as Tibet. He being prisoner since the 1964 until 1977, married and have a daughter. But his political view been swing between supporting Chinese or condemned them as destroying Tibetan cultures.

Isabel Hutton telling this profoundly 10th Panchen Lama to give reader understan
...more
Samantha Artuso
Jul 31, 2015 Samantha Artuso rated it it was amazing
This book is right up there with Seven Years in Tibet. It will make you despise the Chinese Communist Party on so many levels. I slowed down near the end because picking up the book literally made me sad. A good read and full of history!
Janet
Jul 17, 2008 Janet rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Annie
Recommended to Janet by: found while browsing at my favorite used bookstore
A little hard to wade through all the facts at times, but all-in-all a fascinating account. I learned much about Buddhism, the Dalai and Panchen Lamas, Tibet and China.
Chelsea
May 04, 2010 Chelsea rated it really liked it
Really fascinating but one sided. It's so horrible that Tibetans have lost their language, culture, religion, etc. Yet, somehow they have survived.
Heather Goff
Jul 29, 2007 Heather Goff rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of the few non-fiction books that have Really Riveted me.
And about something I (and the rest of the world?) had known little about.
Obio
Dec 20, 2007 Obio rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: anyone interested in Tibetan/China/politics/religion/history stuff
Informative, exciting, enlightening, sad. Good read.
Clarissel
Jul 14, 2008 Clarissel rated it really liked it
Good book on the plight of the current Panchen Lama
Claudia Putnam
I'm not sure how helpful this book would be to those who know little of the history of Tibet or the complexity of its religion and politics. The summaries are perfunctory and do little justice to the realities and may leave readers more confused than ever, or worse, with the belief that they have some actual understanding.

Hilton reveals the shallowness of her own understanding when she lists "Muslims" as among the ethnicities of the region, along with, say, Tibetans and Mongols. She also gives,
...more
Roger
May 19, 2015 Roger rated it it was amazing
At his ordination, the Great 5th Dalai Lama (1617—1682) bestowed the title of Panchen Lama (Great Scholar) on Lobsang Choekyi Gyaltsen, his mentor and spiritual guide. Lobsang Gyaltsen became known as the 4th Panchen Lama as the title was applied posthumously to three of his predecessors. The Panchen Lama was given the Tashilhunpo Monastery which has been the seat of the Panchen Lamas ever since. When Lobsang Gyaltsen died in 1662 at the age 95, the 5th Dalai Lama immediately began a search for ...more
Pradeep
Apr 19, 2015 Pradeep rated it really liked it
I was quite impervious to the tibetan movement prior to reading this and has made me want to read a lot more about their struggle. Their struggle to retain their land, culture, spirituality and identity strikes deep inside. The lack of todays headline news of the missing child is quite understandable considering the clout of the country in current economic and political world.

Though i admit I am reading this book 15 years later, it provides a well researched and quite subjective context to the
...more
Rigzin
Dec 04, 2011 Rigzin added it
The whereabouts of a boy who was recognized as the 11th Panchen Lama is still not known and his disappearance at the age of five made him the youngest political prisoner held in captivity by the Chinese government. It is absurd for someone who denounces religion as poison to be meddling in religious affairs as the Chinese did when they placed a boy of their own choice as the 11th Panchen Lama and then to have kidnapped the real Panchen Lama who was recognized by the search committee and approved ...more
Heather
Aug 18, 2012 Heather rated it it was ok
Shelves: history
This was an informative, well researched book that teaches a lot about Tibetan Buddhism. However, unless you are really interested in the subject, it probably tells you more than you wanted to know. There were probably only about 30 pages of the book that I found compelling to read and I had to wait 200 pages to get to that part. I learned some interesting things along the way, but I had to push myself to read it... and I really like to read. I am impressed at the author's getting so close to ...more
John
Jun 16, 2014 John rated it it was amazing
Shelves: tibet
This is an important (and inside look) book about the Panchen Lama's death and subsequent, politically fraught recognition. The Panchen Lama is the second highest incarnation in Tibet after the Dalai Lama. The two men have had an intimate and interesting relationship throughout history, finally culminating in the latter events of the 20th century when the Dalai Lama's exile government and the PRC fought over Buddhism vs. proper Beijing procedure, leading to the worst tragedy in Tibet since the ...more
Greg Schmidt
Jun 01, 2016 Greg Schmidt rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: buddhist-studies
The author provides deep context for the disappearance of the Panchen Lama - historical, religious, socio-economic. The book is full of first hand interviews, including audiences with the Dalai Lama, as well as other key players - all witnesses to the build-up, execution and/or aftermath of the young lama's disappearance. Fascinating insight into the development of Tibetan lamaism and its unfortunate repression within the tragedy of Chinese domination and aggression, along with a view into the ...more
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