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The Fifth Dalai Lama and his First three administrators

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This book is an attempt to elucidate some aspects of the political life of the Fifth Dalai Lama (1617-1682) who established the Ganden Phodrang, his government in the 17th century in Tibet, and especially his relations with the first three administrators (Desi). For the elucidation the book draws mainly from the English translation of the autobiography of the Fifth Dalai Lama (The Illusive Play, Serindia Publications 2014) and contains a vivid account of the lives of the first three administrators of the Fifth Dalai Lama that had remained until now very little known.

The author's historical account of the lives of these monk officials is based on the personal observations made by the Fifth Dalai Lama in his autobiography.

Desi Sonam Rabten, the first administrator, the architect of the Gelug rise, was doctrinaire and sectarian. He was succeeded by Depa Norbu, next of kin, who rebelled against the Ganden Phodrang government. However, Desi Trinle Gyatso, the third one, was a faithful follower of the Fifth Dalai Lama's non-sectarian ecumenical policy.

Author: Sean Jones