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Eight Steps to Happiness
By Geshe Kelsang Gyatso

Review: What better gift to gift than happiness? I have read plenty of books that begin with “Five Steps to…” or “Seven Essential Stages to…” but none really delivered…until I read Eight Steps to Happiness.  Honestly, I haven’t found a clearer set of instructions to achieve personal and collective happiness anywhere.

Geshe Kelsang Gyatso was ordained as a Buddhist monk in Tibet at the age of eight. He is a fully accomplished meditation master, prolific author, and international teacher
who has lived in the West since 1977 and has founded over 1,100 Kadampa Buddhist meditation centers and groups around the world.  His writing is different from most Buddhist teachers I have encountered–the instructions are so clear, and direct, that it’s hard NOT to understand his teachings.  For me, this is a great advantage since clearly understood instructions are easier to implement.

While the examples given in the book (of how to apply his principles) draw heavily on Buddhist teachers and students from the past, the book feels like a tome for readers of any faith. Like most Buddhist teachings, the source is Buddhist but the applications are broad.

Some people enjoy spiritual books written using personal stories, others like to read about historical figures and others prefer scripture.  This book is a mixture of all three–and for that reason (and the teachings themselves!) has been a profound book in my life.

This book can be passed around on Thanksgiving and might inspire the year’s best conversations around the table.

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