Oprah: True. Can we talk now about what it's like to be you? When you were first discovered as the Dalai Lama, did you feel that there was something special about you?

Dalai Lama: No.

Oprah: There wasn't a part of you that had always known you were different?

Dalai Lama: Sometimes, I do feel that, yes, I may feel some effect from previous lives. In the early mornings, when I am still half asleep and half awake, my mind is very clear. And when I am in this special twilight state, I have had glimpses of memory from past lives in which I identify with those from, in some cases, one or two centuries ago. I once had a feeling that I might have been in Egypt 600 years ago.

Oprah: Do you feel you're different from most humans?

Dalai Lama: No, no, no.

Oprah: So like every other human, are you your own master?

Dalai Lama: Yes.

Oprah: But you are the master of no one else.

Dalai Lama: That's true, too.

Oprah: Growing up, did you miss having a regular childhood?

Dalai Lama: Fortunately, I had playmates, though most of them were grown-ups.

Oprah: Have you ever wanted a family or children?

Dalai Lama: No. Well, when I was around 15 or 16, I had some interest. That was biological. But then some of my older playmates who were monks later became laypeople, and they told me about some of the complications of leading a family life. Of course, there can be great pleasure in having a family, but there are a lot of problems, too.


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