Beyond the Book: Background information when reading Escape from the Land of Snows

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Escape from the Land of Snows

The Young Dalai Lama's Harrowing Flight to Freedom and the Making of a Spiritual Hero

By Stephan Talty

Escape from the Land of Snows
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  • Hardcover: Jan 2011,
    320 pages.
    Paperback: Jan 2011,
    320 pages.

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The Norbulingka and Potala Palaces
Until he was forced into exile in 1959, the Dalai Lama lived and studied in two magnificent palaces in Lhasa that housed the historical and religious treasures of his nation.

Norbulingka
The buildings and gardens of the Norbulingka (the Summer Palace) cover over 89 acres and were at the heart of the 1959 uprising described in Talty's book. Thousands of Tibetans gathered there and risked their lives to protect the Dalai Lama from the PLA (People's Liberation Army) whom they feared would abduct or kill him. "They believed if he was captured, the dharma would be irreparably harmed. Death was a small price to pay if they stopped that from happening," reports Talty in The Huffington Post. The eighteenth century palace of 374 rooms was severely damaged during the fighting and, in 2003, was rebuilt by the Chinese who removed the large open spaces protesters occupied in 1959 to prevent future riots.

Norbulingka
The thirteen-story, thousand ...

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