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Library of Congress Receives Special Gifts from His Holiness the Dalai Lama

July 21, 2010

Central Tibetan Administration (CTA)
July 20, 2010

Washington, DC -- The Library of Congress in Washington, D.C.
organised an event on Monday (19 July) during which the Librarian,
Dr.James Billington, received three gifts to the Library from His
Holiness the Dalai Lama from his Special Envoy Lodi Gyari.

The three gifts consist of an 18th century Thangka of the Buddha from
the Paksam Trishing collection; a Mandala offering set; and a golden
butter lamp.

Gyari Rinpoche spoke about His Holiness the Dalai Lama's visit to the
Library in February this year, during which he had expressed his
desire to make some gifts to the Library's collection. Rinpoche
described the significance of the Thangka. He referred to these gifts
as strengthening the bond between His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the
United States, 102 years William Rockhill had received some gifts
from the 13th Dalai Lama, which later became a part of the Library's
collection.

Dr Billington, in his remarks, said he was honoured and humbled to
accept these very special gifts from His Holiness. He said that when
His Holiness visited the Library he had the opportunity to show him
the gifts given by his predecessor, the 13th Dalai Lama, to William
Rockhill in 1908. These included a beautiful thangka and a copy of
the Tibetan text on the perfection of wisdom, both highly symbolic of
the special meeting.

Dr Billington said today's gifts also have special symbolic
significance. He said they reminded him of the Library's core
mission, to offer the light of wisdom and learning to the world
through preserving a universal collection of knowledge and creativity
for future generations. He said this includes the Library's Tibetan
collection consisting of nearly 13,000 volumes.

Librarian Billington requested Gyari Rinpoche to thank His Holiness
for these profound gifts, symbolic also of our friendship, and said
he welcomed His Holiness to visit again and again. Dr Billington
concluded by wishing Gyari Rinpoche Tashi Delek.

Given below are the descriptions (kindly prepared by Dr Thupten
Jinpa) of the special Thangka.
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