Dalai Lama visits D.C. sukkah

The Dalai Lama said he had much to learn from Jews during a Shemini Atzeret visit to the Adas Israel Congregation sukkah in Washington on Oct. 10, 2009. He is flanked by Rabbi Gil Steinlauf, left, and Cantor Jeffrey Weber. (Consolidated News Photos)

The Dalai Lama said he had much to learn from Jews during a Shemini Atzeret visit to the Adas Israel Congregation sukkah in Washington on Oct. 10, 2009. He is flanked by Rabbi Gil Steinlauf, left, and Cantor Jeffrey Weber. (Consolidated News Photos)

WASHINGTON (JTA) — The Dalai Lama visited the sukkah of a Washington synagogue.

The Buddhist spiritual leader met with the congregation’s worshipers in the sukkah of Adas Israel Synagogue on Saturday, Shemini Atzeret, Ynet reported.

The Dalai Lama told the crowd that it was his first time inside a sukkah, and that he admires Jews very much for their perseverance through years of oppression.

He said he has "a lot to learn from the Jews" and sees them as an example for his own Tibetan people, who have been in exile for 50 years.

President Obama declined to meet with the Dalai Lama during his time in Washington for fear that it might aggravate the Chinese government ahead of the president’s upcoming visit to Beijing. The president hopes to convince China to impose sanctions on Iran in the U.N. Security Council.

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