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The Wisdom Of Forgiveness

4.16 of 5 stars 4.16  ·  rating details  ·  664 ratings  ·  61 reviews
The great leader as we've never seen him before.

This is the extraordinary documentation of the evolving friendship between the Dalai Lama and the man who followed him across Ireland and Eastern Europe, on a pilgrimage to India's holy sites, and through the Dalai Lama's near fatal illness. On this remarkable journey Victor Chan was awarded an insight into His Holiness-his
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Published (first published 2004)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,462)
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Laurie
I am really enjoying this book about the Dalai Lama.

My favorite points are:

1. "Giving and Taking"--a meditation where you learn how to send kindness and compassion to your "enemies" or people who hate you or people who you hate. It is a fascinating process.
The point is to learn how to be more compassionate for all beings.

2. The concepts of interdependence and emptiness. They are both related. We are all interdependent on each other. What happens to others affects us. I don't completely understan
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treehugger
Jan 30, 2008 treehugger rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Buddhists, spiritual seekers, and those who still believe in the inherent goodness of humans
I really enjoyed this book - I couldn't believe the depth of the issues into which the author delved with the Dalai Lama. Sometimes I even felt a little embarassed, like perhaps I shouldn't even be reading such personal accounts of such a high lama's spiritual experiences. The author was not very likable - he never really expounded on WHY he followed the Dalai Lama around the world and had so many private interviews with His Holiness - not until the last few minutes of the book do we even know v ...more
Angel
Compared to the other book of his I read (The Art of Happiness at Work , which I have to add here yet. I really liked that one.), this one was really a letdown. It was not bad; it just was not as engaging. Lukewarm would be a good way to describe it. I think I was expecting more of the Dalai Lama's points of view and thoughts and less on the biographical/travel details. Anyways, I am sure the book would be good for some people, but I would probably recommend other works by the Dalai Lama rather ...more
Ed Patterson
Emptiness...can you find it? The Dali can and knows it. Forgiveness is the first step to many more insights of being emotionally truthful and strong. Why is he so inspirational? The human"kind"ness is his temple. He has found how to live the outer realms of his emotions and his inner thoughts for a unified communication of the human soul. Soul to Soul breathes in the pages. Take the journey with the Dali and you will be moved, too.
Sarah
This is a good book if you want to learn more about the daily habits of the Dalai Lama, or learn a bit more about Buddhism or Tibet.

The author is of Chinese descent, and one of the highlights of the book is when the author asks if there is any animosity toward the Chinese due to their takeover of Tibet. The Dalai Lama speaks about forgiveness.

A large portion of the book is devoted to the Dalai Lama's views on 'emptiness'. This is the Buddhist term for interconnectedness. Because each person or o
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Roberta
This is a quiet book based on interviews of the Dalai Lama by Victor Chan, a Chinese journalist. I like the mixing of Chan's personal thoughts, feelings, and experiences in his own life with the responses from and experiences with the Dalai Lama over several years time. They had an evolving friendship. All of this made the book richer and more real than a simple transcript of the interviews. One part that was especially memorable to me was Chan's description of how animated and changing the Dala ...more
Angel
Being witness to the deepening relationship between the journalist Victor Chan and the Dalai Lama was very pleasurable and enlightening. It's the first book I ever read by / with the Dalai Lama and I think it will be my favourite one, after a quick glance through others in a bookstore recently. There is something incredibly appealing about Victor's process of trying to understand the Lama's teachings, as well as getting to hear snippets of their casual conversations and journalistic asides. Vict ...more
Jason
Victor Chan's book about the Dalai Lama is simple but enlightening. The book itself contains selections from numerous interviews Chan conducted with the Dalai Lama. Chan also writes down numerous anecdotes about what he has seen from observing the Dalai Lama in different settings.

Some of the people who are familiar with the Dalai Lama will recognize many of the teachings contained in this book. There are strong passages concerning the importance of compassion, wisdom, and forgiveness. The salie
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Sean Kwon
Mar 22, 2011 Sean Kwon rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who like the Dalai Lama
Recommended to Sean by: Katie Kwon
My sister suggested i read this book a while back and since most recently it sat on my shelf calmly waiting. Lately, I've been edging towards reading books about buddhism and this book's cover looked great: the Dalai Lama calmly sitting in his red shawl meditating deeply about something. I know this book isn't directly about buddhism but I thought it would be a good way to learn about one of it's worldly figureheads.

For some reason i assumed that the conversations in this book were going to be i
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Leanna Manuel
Many of my friends and acquaintances already know that I am intrigued by the Dalai Lama. I was privileged to hear him speak once and have been very moved by most interviews and books I have read about him. What I have found most compelling is the apparent congruity between his teaching and his life. The Wisdom of Forgiveness: Intimate Conversations and Journeys by His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Victor Chan describes the congruence beautifully.

The Dalai Lama teaches about emptiness, interdepenen
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Bridget
I liked how this book touched on ideas that are applicable to improving one's life as well as contributing to the greater consciousness. Where this book explains forgiveness as a path to further enlightenment, it shines. Unfortunately, it is short on explaining these ideas and heavy on memoirs of Victor Chan's personal relationship with the Dalai Lama. I agree with a recent reviewer that it isn't what I expected. I prefer to read books written by the Dalai Lama in first person, meant to inform t ...more
Melani
It was light and heavy. I especially like how Chan shows the Dalai Lama's compassion towards all people, including himself. Able to be introspective without self-deprecation, able to be kind and yet still tease and have fun, able to be empathetic and yet not crippled by grief, the Dalai Lama and those monks that work with him seem to apply their deep compassion with a light touch... I learned a lot, including the fact that the Dalai Lama likes to joke around, eat lots of jam on his toast, and si ...more
Ileana
The book was quite delightful. Victor Chan follows the Dalai Lama for a number of years and writes what he has learned from the Dalai Lama about life, happiness, forgiveness, compassion, hatred, etc. I enjoyed reading how the Dalai Lama laughs easily and much.

"To the Dalai Lama, suffering and adversity are the necessary conditions for developing patience and tolerance. These qualities are vital if we want to reduce negative emotions like hatred or anger. When things go well, we have less need to
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Shawn
A simply great book. Words to live by. The best explanation of the concept of emptiness. If every one read this books and followed its meaning, the world would be a better place.
Chelsea
Aug 04, 2008 Chelsea rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: no one really
I expected this book to be a learning experience for me and I was looking forward to learning about His Holiness's methods of compassion and forgiveness. This book only went into those virtues breifly and instead was a glorified account of the Author's relationship with The Dalai Lama. The book was basically the author's bragging rights about his close and personal relationshop with His Holiness and how privilaged he was to be allowed into certain parts of the Dalai Lamas daily practices. If you ...more
Siobhan
I was attracted by the title but I wasn't happy with how the author spent alot of time "meandering" with descriptions of the surrounding environment and filling in empty spaces. This was one of those books that I quickly skimmed through to get to the meat and the nitty gritty.
I don't enjoy a book that wastes my time alot before getting around to actually discussing the subject matter of the book in reference to the title.
It should've been called " My Interviews With The Dalai Lama" and then a
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Elaine Gardner
I was unsure of this book, but borrowed it from the library anyway. I was afraid that, as a Christian, I would not be able to relate to the teachings of Buddhism. What I found truly surprised me. The main message is love and forgiveness, something that transcends religion and goes straight to the heart of relationships. This book was thought provoking and life altering. Forgiving yourself and accepting forgiveness are not things that are learned once. They are lessons to learn over and over agai ...more
Tony
Jun 09, 2010 Tony rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: no one really
This book would be like a small slice of to-die-for steak set in front of some poor starving man on a desert island. I agree with one reviewer who said this was simply a glorified account of Victor Chan's relationship with the Dalai Lama. However, this book was interesting enough to keep me coming back for more despite a lack of real sustained depth. That may be the real purpose of Mr. Chan: to invite us to see how Tibetan Buddhism may be of help to our own lives.
Mallory
Apr 04, 2008 Mallory rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
I really enjoyed this book. It was the first i've read of his holiness' and I can't wait to read more. It really opened my eyes into this whole idea that I really like and find myself ready to practice. The only part I wasn't thrilled with was some of the extra narrative of the authors. I wish it had been more concentrated on his holiness instead of some of the details that happened to the narrator. Still a lot of great ideas and knowledge
Shannon
Forgiveness is HARD. Ow. But pent up, simmering anger and resentment are worse. So I bought this book.

I was surprised by the format - it's one man's take on the Dalai Lama, with a focus on themes of forgiveness. There's a lot of biography going on.

It's still hard for me to understand how the Dalai Lama preaches non-violence and forgiveness after all the Chinese government has done to his people. That alone is an inspiring story.
Craig
"We have to make every effort to promote human affection. While we oppose violence or war, we must show there is another way- a nonviolent way. Now look at humanity as a whole. Today's reality: whole world almost like one body. One thing happens some distant place, the repercussions reach your own place. Destruction of your neighbor is essentially destruction of yourself. Our future depends on global well-being"
Kayla
It is always a good use of time to read HH the Dalai Lama's thoughts on compassion and emptiness. This book was about the friendship between the author and the Dalai Lama and his numerous conversations with him. I prefer books that the Dalai Lama has written himself but this one captured a more down to earth side of a great spiritual leader.
Kerri Veitch
I love this book. For the longest time I've felt that I'm a sucker or an idiot for truly forgiving people for wronging me. This book validated my position of true forgiveness and letting go. Living this way is true freedom and it doesn't make you an idiot. It brings you closer to who you are and to God.
Tsewang Rinzin
It was really a book which is necessary for all to read specially the Tibetan and the Chinese. Victor Chan, a chinese friends of Dalai lama writes about his early meeting with His holiness in 70s talking about his fears while meeting with Dalai lama caring a name of anti-chinese and a separatist.
Nicole Fraser
For instruction in the practice of tonglen, key to the Dalai Lama's wisdom of forgiveness, I recommend the Pema Chodron CD set "Be Grateful to Everyone: An In-depth Guide to the Practice of Lojong" and the book "Training the Mind and Cultivating Loving-Kindness" by Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche.
Bill
A view of the Dalai Lama as a man and a long-practicing monk, the only two ways he characterizes himself. Victor Chan, the co-author, tells the story of his visits and conversations with the Dalai Lama. Overall, the book is about a man with deep compassion and immeasurable forgiveness.
Spider
Liking the irrepressible Dalai Lama's wisdom- not as thrilled with how pleased with himself Victor Chan is for getting close to D. L. Still, as my New Year's resolution is finding joy through forgiveness, this book is insightful & inspiring.
Jane
This book is an account of a Chinese man's friendship with the Dalai Lama. It's not a book of the DL's straight teachings. Still it's entertaining and gives some nice glimpes behind the scenes while
emphasizing a primary teaching on how to forgive.
Mariana
Victor Chan tells about his experiences interviewing and traveling with the Dalai Lama who seems to be a happy person who practices forgiveness even toward the Chinese. We must practice forgiveness before we achieve peace of mind.
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Jetsun Jamphel Ngawang Lobsang Yeshe Tenzin Gyatso (born Lhamo Döndrub), the 14th Dalai Lama, is a practicing member of the Gelug School of Tibetan Buddhism and is influential as a Nobel Peace Prize laureate, the world's most famous Buddhist monk, and the leader of the exiled Tibetan government in India.

Tenzin Gyatso was the fifth of sixteen children born to a farming family. He was proclaimed the
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“If we think only of ourselves, forget about other people, then our minds occupy very small area. Inside that small area, even tiny problem appears very big. But the moment you develop a sense of concern for others, you realize that, just like ourselves, they also want happiness; they also want satisfaction. When you have this sense of concern, your mind automatically widens. At this point, your own problems, even big problems, will not be so significant. The result? Big increase in peace of mind. So, if you think only of yourself, only your own happiness, the result is actually less happiness. You get more anxiety, more fear.” 162 likes
“To the Dalai Lama, suffering and adversity are the necessary conditions for developing patience and tolerance. These qualities are vital if we want to reduce negative emotions like hatred or anger. When things go well, we have less need to be patient and forgiving. It's only when we come across problems, when we suffer, that we truly learn these virtues. Once we internalize them, compassion flows naturally.” 16 likes
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