SAJA member Mayank Chhaya has a new book out, a biography of the Dalai Lama. The publicity material describes the book thus:
Written with the full cooperation of the Dalai Lama, this fascinating, up-to-date biography at once captures the public persona and enduring mystery behind one of the world's most important spiritual leaders.
DALAI LAMA: Man, Monk, Mystic (Amazon link)
By Mayank Chhaya, Doubleday
See below for the publicist's contact for review copy and interview info. Post your reax in the comments section.
Attn: Members of the Working Press:
LAMA: Man, Monk, Mystic, please contact Rudy Faust at Doubleday via e-mail at
rfaust [at] randomhouse.com - please be aware that Rudy will ONLY be able to
up-to-date biography at once captures the public persona and enduring mystery
behind one of the world's most important spiritual leaders.
In 1997, the Indian journalist Mayank Chhaya was authorized by the Dalai Lama
to write about his life and times. The only authorized biographer who is not
a Buddhist, Chhaya conducted more than a dozen personal interviews with the
Dalai Lama in McLeod Ganj in India's Himalayan north, home to Tibet's
government-in-exile. In Dalai Lama: Man, Monk, Mystic he presents an
in-depth, insightful portrait of a figure of perennial interest to people all
over the world.
Chhaya writes about Tibet and the Buddhist tradition from which the Dalai
Lama emerged, helping readers understand the context that shaped his beliefs,
politics, and ideals. Adding depth and nuance to his portrait, Chhaya depicts
the Dalai Lama in the light of his life in exile and the various roles he has
had to assume for his followers. He sheds light on the highly complex
conflict between China and Tibet, and offers insights into the growing
discontent among young Tibetans who are frustrated with the nonviolent
approach to Chinese occupation that the Dalai Lama advocates.
A balanced, informative view of the Dalai Lama and his work, this biography
is both a compelling profile of a remarkable spiritual leader and his
mission, and an engaging look at how the current unrest in his country will
affect its future.
About the Author...
MAYANK CHHAYA has been a journalist for the past twenty-five years and has
reported extensively on India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and now the United
States. He is a widely read commentator on South Asian affairs for the New
Delhi-based Indo-Asian News Service and also runs www.dailysub.com, a news
and current affairs site. He is based in Chicago and divides his time between
Washington, D.C., and New York.
Advance praise for DALAI LAMA: Man, Monk, Mystic
"In examining the life of His Holiness the Dalai Lama as an individual in the
context of his different roles as man, monk, and mystic, Mayank Chhaya has
succeeded in presenting an engaging portrait of one of the world's great
leaders." -Desmond Tutu
"In this meticulously researched biography of the Dalai Lama, who describes
himself as embodying "three equal and at times competing elements of man,
monk, and mystic," Chhaya carefully presents diverse viewpoints of the
Tibet-China conflict while simultaneously drawing an insightful portrait of
this enigmatic personage."
"This is an authorized biography by an Indian journalist who did his research
homework and had access to the Dalai Lama. The author also brings a
familiarity with Asian politics, an essential frame of reference for
understanding the complex situation of the Tibetan spiritual and political
leader who has spent close to fifty years in exile in India. The end product
is balanced-neither debunking nor hagiographic, but taking a Buddhist-style
Middle Way toward its subject, even though the author is not himself a
Buddhist. Particularly fascinating and demystifying is the account of the
Dalai Lama's earliest years." -Publishers Weekly
DALAI LAMA: Man, Monk, Mystic
By Mayank Chhaya
Published by Doubleday
Publication date: March 13, 2007
352 pp, 19 color illustrations, 5-1/2 x 8-1/4"
ISBN: 978-0-385-51945-8 (0-385-51945-1)
o o o o o
Syndicated Article from the Indo-Asian News Service
US-based Indian scribe pens Dalai Lama biography
By Ashok Easwaran, Indo-Asian News Service
Chicago, Jan 24 (IANS) An authorised biography of the Dalai Lama, 'Man, Monk,
Mystic', by Chicago-based Indian origin journalist Mayank Chhaya is being
published simultaneously in nine countries.
The book will be published in India in February, followed in March by
releases in the US, Australia, Brazil, France, Germany, the Netherlands,
Taiwan and Russia.
Chhaya's literary agent Lynn Franklin told IANS: 'I am quite sure we will be
going to other countries soon.'
The journalist was granted complete access to the Buddhist spiritual leader,
whom he interviewed for several hours over a period of time. During the
course of his research he spoke to over 200 people in India and outside.
Franklin said the book is being published in English, German, Portuguese,
French, Dutch, Russian and Complex Chinese.
The book has already got a favourable review in the bible of the publishing
industry, the Publishers Weekly.
'The author also brings a familiarity with Asian politics, an essential frame
of reference for understanding the complex situation of the Tibetan spiritual
and political leader who has spent close to 50 years in exile in India. The
end product is balanced - neither debunking nor hagiographic, but taking a
Buddhist-style Middle Way toward its subject, even though the author is not
himself a Buddhist,' the Publishers Weekly said in a starred review.
Another endorsement has come from Nobel Laureate Desmond Tutu: 'In examining
the life of His Holiness the Dalai Lama as an individual in the context of
his different roles as man, monk and mystic, Mayank Chhaya has succeeded in
presenting an engaging portrait of one of the world's great leaders.'
Said Franklin: 'The attraction of the book is that it is an authorised
biography of a popular leader written in a way that will make him accessible
to a lot of people.'
The biography puts the Dalai Lama within a frame of reference, which ranges
from his spirituality to his role in the geopolitical situation of the
region, she said.
The book attracted bidding in both India and Taiwan. Franklin said she was
particularly pleased at the response to the auction in Taiwan.
Chhaya has been a journalist for two and a half decades, having extensively
reported on India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and the US. A former chief
correspondent for South Asia of IANS, he was authorised by the Dalai Lama in
1997 to write the book.
This is his second book, the first being a 1992 best-selling biography of
Indian technology guru Sam Pitroda.
The Dalai Lama, who is the supreme spiritual leader of Tibetan Buddhists, has
been living in India since 1959 after fleeing his homeland following an
uprising against Chinese communist rule.
His government-in-exile, which is not recognized by any country, is based in
the Indian hill town of Dharamsala. India is also home to about 100,000
Copyright Indo-Asian News Service