I beleave this book was insightful. It was fairly simple to read, and was worded well. however, reading this, and several other books for an honors project, i must say that it takes a different reader to enjoy. i also read invading tibet, which i thought was much more fun to read. Dalai lama my son is a good book, but to me it seemed flat.
This is a magnificent autobigraphy. Also, a very upsetting one. The "Tibet in Exile" website claims that Tibet had women's rights. This book by the Dalai Lama's mother claims otherwise. In Amdo, which is Eastern Tibet, they had a custom that seemed to work for adultery. But not for women. The family of the woman who was the offender were required to kill her. Dike Tsering goes into more detail. Also, if a man died leaving his wife alone, she was required not to marry for three years. Then the family would conduct "secret negotiations" for profit. This caused many Tibetan women to commit suicide. The book also displays the tremendous impact of astrology. How you got married, who you married, and so forth. The astrologer was consulted on all matters of importance in the family. And there were ghosts. One ghost was resposible for the deaths of four of her children. In Lhasa, there were tremendous class distinctions! And Diki Tsering displays them simply as horrible snobs. This applys to the aristocrats who lived off their "bonded laborers". And wouldn't even call them by name. They also acted like Diki Tsering was nothing but "a farm hand". The two regents who controlled Tibet while the Dalai Lama was growing up were Reting Rinpoche and Taktra Rinpoche. Reting was the first regent, until he was supposedly assasinated by Taktra Rinpoche. The author also believes, as did the people of Tibet, that Taktra Rinpoche poinsoned her husband, the father of the Dalai Lama, because he was friends with Reting Rinpoche. Nevertheless, Reting Rinpoche was not without violence. A Tsipan Lungshar led a movemovement for reform. Reting Rinpoche had his eyes goughed out as punishment. I find the testimony of Diki Tsering very good. She is really strong and seems to speak with great truth. I believe her about the ghosts and the astrology. But about the other issues, and as a follower of Tibetan Buddhism, I am more depressed than usual! But I do feel that this is a must read for people who do want to save Tibet. We have to know our "weakspots" so that they don't come back later to haunt us. And I don't mean ghosts! Please buy and read the book. Thank you very much.