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A: Spiritually speaking, many people assume that the Dalai Lama is like the pope of Buddhism. For one thing, the Dalai Lama is the highest-ranking lama in Tibetan Buddhism, but he is not officially recognized as a leader among the other schools of Buddhism.For example, although Tibetan Buddhism is the state religion of Bhutan, the last independent Buddhist kingdom in the world, Bhutan has its own head lama.which grew to become the largest monastery in the world, a spiritual training ground for as many as 8,000 resident monks.This master later came to be known as the First Dalai Lama, in honor of his extraordinary attainments.
In each of the last 10 years, he has visited 50 or more countries on his mission of peace, nonviolence, and human rights.
Beyond fulfilling their political duties, the Dalai Lamas have included great poets, scholars, and adepts who have brought ever higher honor to the title.
Since the 17th century, when the term came into use, each Dalai Lama has been regarded as the incarnation of Avalokiteshvara (Chenrezig, in Tibetan) and is considered the reincarnation of the previous Dalai Lama.
We even had a vegan wedding in Chinatown in Philadelphia (thanks to Peter Fong at Singapore Vegetarian/Kosher Restaurant as well!
) and our friends and family got to experience how wonderful vegan food can be!
Other schools of Buddhism have their own chief monks or sangha leaders.