Dalai Lama Calls Himself a Marxist

The Dalai Lama speaks during during a press conference after the first of his teaching sessions May 20, 2010 at Radio City Hall in New York. The Dalai Lama is on a four-day visit to New York. AFP PHOTO/Stan Honda

Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama says he is Marxist because the economic system has what he calls a "moral ethics."

The Dalai Lama told reporters in New York Thursday that capitalism is only about how to make profits.

However, he credits capitalism for bringing new freedoms and better living standards to Communist China. He said as the Chinese people become richer they want more freedoms, including an independent judiciary and a free press.

The Dalai Lama is in New York to give a series of lectures. When asked why tickets to his teachings are selling for high prices online, he said the cost of the teachings is set by the organizers and none of the money goes to him personally. In addition, he said some of the money goes to charities.