Dalai Lama says female successor needs to be more attractive, slams Trump

The Dalai Lama, praised for his compassion, made some controversial comments on a woman taking his place and changed his tune on President Trump during a wide-ranging interview.

The 83-year-old spiritual leader from Tibet, who has been in and out of the hospital recently, doubled down on a sexist comment he made in 2015.

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"If a female Dalai Lama comes, she should be more attractive," he told the BBC, explaining further that in Buddhism outward and inward beauty matter.

And while he said in 2016 that he had "no worries" about Trump becoming the leader of the Free World, the Dalai Lama, who hasn't met or received a call from him, said the U.S. president has a "lack of moral principle."

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The Dalai Lama's shift on Trump could be in part because of the president's relationship with China's Xi Jinping. The Dalai Lama was forced to flee Tibet 60 years ago after a failed uprising against Chinese rule, and, in the past, he has traveled for months teaching Buddhism and highlighting Tibetans' struggle for greater freedom in China. He has cut down on travel recently due to his health.

The Dalai Lama slammed Trump for pulling out of the Paris climate accord and for his handling of the humanitarian crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border.

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"When he became president he expressed America first," he said. "That is wrong."

However, he did praise Vice President Pence's support for the Tibetan people in regard to religious liberty.

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The last time the Dalai Lama met with a sitting president was in 2016 with President Barack Obama, angering China. The two met up again in New Delhi, India in 2017 as two Nobel Peace Prize laureates. He described it as a meeting of "two old trusted friends."