Published in France as Dalai Lama: Pas si Zen (Dalai Lama: Not so Zen) by Maxime Vivas, a French journalist, blogger, the book was later translated into English and published as The Hidden Side of the Dalai Lama. This political commentator goes where no other journalist dares to go by showing how, over the course of the last half century, the 14th Dalai Lama’s writings and teachings cannot be reconciled with his behind-the-scenes political manoeuvering. On the one hand he is the spiritual leader to millions; on the other he has played a masterful game with western media in swaying public opinion in his favor while glossing over the facts of history and leaving China with egg on its face in a decades-long public relations war. Fascinated by the discord, Vivas travelled to Tibet in 2010 where he delved into the genesis of the China-Tibet split and the how the 14th Dalai Lama himself was transformed from a 19-year-old “living god” at the centre of one of the world’s most isolated and repressive theocracies into a Nobel Peace Prize winner and pop culture icon.
Tibet appears as the land of monasteries where Buddhist monks meditate in peace and serenity amid snow-capped mountains. In reality, the truth is far more sinister. Behind the Smile is a stunning indictment of the 14th Dalai Lama and how he is portrayed by Western media as a benevolent religious leader persecuted by a ruthless socialist power. Based on his personal observations on the ground in Tibet and detailed analysis and interpretation of the Dalai Lama’s own writings, author Maxime Vivas reveals the opportunistic variations, omissions, lies, and stratagems demonstrated by the Dalai Lama in a decades’-long public relations struggle with China. From his ban on Shugden worship to his own ties with the United States Central Intelligence Agency, as well as Tibet’s tacit relationship with Hitler’s Germany, the true image of the Dalai Lama is hidden behind the public persona of an untouchable spiritual leader to millions, pop culture icon, and Nobel Peace Price recipient. This portrait of the Dalai Lama flies in the face of popular media, and represents the vanguard of a growing movement to provoke awareness of the complex agenda of the Dalai Lama and his followers in dealing with Tibet’s relationship with the rest of the world.
He reveals how the Dalai Lama, Free Tibet issue is a complex weaving-together of government and non-government interventions, the CIA, and the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), and tens if not hundreds of millions of dollars. The book perfectly highlights this Dalai Lama – CIA – NED connection and how this money is still used to subsidise the Dalai Lama’s political activities. “Those are just the tip of the iceberg” concluded Vivas.
- Bodkyi Translation & Research House $15,000
- Consultations Samdup $50,000
- Gu-Chu-Sum Movement of Tibet $43,675
- International Campaign for Tibet $50,000
- International Tibet Support Network $45,000
- Khawa Karpo Tibet Culture Centre $25,000
- Students For a Free Tibet $22,506
- Tibet Museum $15,000
- Tibetan Centre for Human Rights & Democracy $50,000
- Tibetan Institute for Performing Arts $15,000
- Tibetan Literacy Society $35,000
- Tibetan Parliamentary & Policy Research Centre $15,000
- Tibetan Review Trust Society $25,000
- Tibetan Women’s Association, Central $15,000
- Voice of Tibet $33,600
- Welfare Society Tibetan Chamber of Commerce $15,000
Since Vivas visited Tibet in 2010 as a journalist for alternative news site Le Grand Soir, and his book The Dalai Lama: Not So Zen was published, he has endured much animosity:
“The Dalai Lama’s French friends insulted, disparaged, threatened me, and even tried to have a television channel which had invited me to appear, sanctioned.”