From the Library

"Of you desire happiness, you should seek the causes that give rise to it, and if you don't desire suffering, then what you should do is to ensure that the causes and conditions that would give rise to it no longer arise."
-The Dalai Llama

The subtitle to this book, "A Handbook for Living", intrigued me, so I checked it out. What I love about the wisdom of the Dalai Lama is that it is so simple. It almost seems too simple. The first few chapters are devoted to the idea that the ultimate goal in any life is, or should be, happiness. Simple, right? Who doesn't want to be happy? And yet when I began to examine my life, there were so many things standing in the way of pure happiness, and they could all be changed by my attitude, actions, words. And so began the cleansing of this home.

I don't know where I got this need to collect stuff and hold on to things that are useless and unsentimental. I have this fear of wastefulness that would better fit a war survivor or someone who had gone through the Great Depression. I hate waste. But when the kids were at their grandparents for the night I went through and cleared out closets, toys baskets, rooms. I believe in the Montessori approach to learning and play: simple is better, less is more. But you would never know it to look at my home. I felt stressed because the house always seemed messy, stressed because my ideals weren't in line with my reality, stressed because there was just too much stuff. And now that stress is slowly lifting. What in your life is standing in the way of your happiness? And what can you do to change it?

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