Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Dalai Lama to visit Sun Valley

September stay here will kick off U.S. tour

Express Staff Writer

His Holiness the Dalai Lama is scheduled to visit the Wood River Valley in September, announced Kiril Sokoloff, a Ketchum resident and prominent investment researcher.

A personal friend of the Dalai Lama, Sokoloff said Monday that His Holiness would bring his message of compassion to Sun Valley during the anniversary of 9/11. Sokoloff said the formal invitation was offered by Idaho Gov. Dirk Kempthorne and was accepted by His Holiness.

In the letter Kempthorne expressed a desire for Idaho children to be able to meet with His Holiness, and he agreed to hold a special session with children during his visit, Sokoloff said. The dates of the Dalai Lama's visit here will be Sept. 10 through Sept. 15. The visit will mark the beginning of a tour in the United States.

Sokoloff said he intends to invite corporate CEOs to an audience with His Holiness in an effort to "restore trust in large corporations." The Dalai Lama also will address a general audience, conduct private audiences and hold a press conference.

During his stay, the Dalai Lama will bless a prayer wheel that will stay in Sun Valley, Sokoloff said. Tibetan prayer wheels, or Mani wheels, are devices for spreading spiritual blessings and well-being.

Sokoloff is the president of 13D Research, an investment research group, based in Boca Raton, Fla., and Ketchum.

In 2003, Sokoloff hosted the Dalai Lama's sister Jetsun Pema, the director of the Tibetan Children's Villages in India, during a visit to the valley.

His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, is the spiritual and temporal leader of the 6 million Tibetan people. Born Lhamo Dhondup on July 6, 1935, to a peasant family, His Holiness was recognized at the age of two as the reincarnation of his predecessor the 13th Dalai Lama. His Holiness is an incarnation of Avalokiteshvara, the Buddha of Compassion.

Because of the Chinese invasion of Tibet in 1949, there are more than 120,000 Tibetan refugees in India, Nepal, Bhutan, and in the West. Since 1960, His Holiness has resided in Dharmasala, India, which serves as the seat of the Tibetan government-in-exile.

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