At 80, Tenzin Gyatso is still an international icon, but the future of his office — and of the Tibetan people — has never been more in doubt.
On a wet Sunday in June at the Glastonbury Festival, more than 100,000 people spontaneously burst into a rendition of “Happy Birthday.” Onstage, Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama, blew out the solitary candle on a large birthday cake while clasping the hand of Patti Smith, who stood beside him. The world’s most famous monk then poked a thick finger at Smith’s silvery mane. “Musicians,” he said, “white hair.” But “the voice and physical action,” he added in his booming baritone, “forceful.” As Smith giggled, he went on: “So, that gives me encouragement. Myself, now 80 years old, but I should be like you — more active!” NY Times