Book Review: ‘The Art of Happiness’ by H.H. The 14th Dalai Lama

The Art of Happiness, 10th Anniversary Edition: A Handbook for Living
What else needs to be said about a classic?  This book literally changed my life.  When I first read the book I was in a really bad spot in my life and need to “change my perspective” and sure enough this book taught me how.

The 10th chapter of the book is entitled “Shifting Perspective”.  His Holiness explains his philosophy on perspective as such “The ability to look at events from different perspectives can be very helpful.  Then, practicing this, one can use certain experiences, certain tragedies to develop a calmness of mind.  One must realize that every phenomena, every event, has different aspects.  Everything is of a relative nature.”  He goes on to explain that allowing our perspective to be so narrow and self-center just furthers our problems and doesn’t allow us to see solutions.

The book, in my opinion, is required reading for anyone.  It isn’t a Buddhist book, it’s a wonderful self discovery book written by a psychiatrist and a monk.  The discussions are incredibly relevant to our busy, over-loaded society where issues of anxiety, depression, anger far outweigh those instances of true sublime happiness.  We all need to learn this Art of Happiness. ~ Digging_the _Dharma

Inner peace is the principal cause of happiness

It is clear that inner peace is the principal cause of happiness. We can observe this in our daily lives. On days when we are calm and happy, even if difficulties arise or we fall victim to a mishap, we take it well, it doesn’t bother us unduly. But on days when we feel sad or have lost our usual calmness, the least little annoyance will take on enormous proportions and be deeply upsetting to us. ~ H.H. The 14th Dalai Lama

Moral Education begins at home

Whatever the intellectual quality of the education given our children, it is vital that it include elements of love and compassion, for nothing guarantees that knowledge alone will be truly useful to human beings. Among the major troublemakers’ society has known, many were well-educated and had great knowledge, but they lacked a moral education in qualities such as compassion, wisdom, and clarity of vision. ~ His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama

 

…bring about inner transformation

The key to genuine happiness is in our hands. To think this way is to discover the essential values of kindness, brotherly love, and altruism. The more clearly we see the benefits of these values, the more we will seek to reject anything that opposes them; in this way, we will be able to bring about inner transformation. ~ His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama

Our Hopes

Although there is no certainty about what lies ahead, people live with the hope that all will go well for them. It is impossible to fulfill our life when we are utterly discouraged. But if we manage to keep our hopes in the future alive, we will be able to overcome all sorts of difficulties and go on living. ~ His Holiness The 14th Dalai Lama