The Dalai Lama has proved remarkably adept at separating what in Tibetan Buddhism is universally valid from what was merely dispensable "Himalayan dogma." He has been known to stop in midsentence, and reverse a millennium of Tibetan precedent almost without blinking an eye. When some gay reporters quizzed the Dalai Lama about his stance on homosexuality, he voiced the typical Buddhist condemnation of it. Then he paused, reconsidered, and sent centuries of prejudice out the window: "If the two people have taken no vows [of chastity], and neither is harmed," he said, "why should it not be acceptable?"
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