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Live in a Better Way: Reflections on Truth, Love, and Happiness

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Imbued with a friendly tone and pithy wisdom, this handsome handbook to approaching life "in a better way" includes six of His Holiness The Dalai Lama's most accessible and inspirational public lectures. Following each talk are the original question-and-answer sessions in which His Holiness opens himself up to his listeners and-now-to readers everywhere. His characteristic Imbued with a friendly tone and pithy wisdom, this handsome handbook to approaching life "in a better way" includes six of His Holiness The Dalai Lama's most accessible and inspirational public lectures. Following each talk are the original question-and-answer sessions in which His Holiness opens himself up to his listeners and-now-to readers everywhere. His characteristically candid guidance on living fully and responsibly, especially at the start of a new millennium, focuses on specific themes that range from religious tolerance to compassion and nonviolence. The book also includes a practical and highly readable introduction to Buddhism and The Dalai Lama's own spiritual heritage, written by the renowned Lama Thubten Zopa Rinpoche.


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Imbued with a friendly tone and pithy wisdom, this handsome handbook to approaching life "in a better way" includes six of His Holiness The Dalai Lama's most accessible and inspirational public lectures. Following each talk are the original question-and-answer sessions in which His Holiness opens himself up to his listeners and-now-to readers everywhere. His characteristic Imbued with a friendly tone and pithy wisdom, this handsome handbook to approaching life "in a better way" includes six of His Holiness The Dalai Lama's most accessible and inspirational public lectures. Following each talk are the original question-and-answer sessions in which His Holiness opens himself up to his listeners and-now-to readers everywhere. His characteristically candid guidance on living fully and responsibly, especially at the start of a new millennium, focuses on specific themes that range from religious tolerance to compassion and nonviolence. The book also includes a practical and highly readable introduction to Buddhism and The Dalai Lama's own spiritual heritage, written by the renowned Lama Thubten Zopa Rinpoche.

30 review for Live in a Better Way: Reflections on Truth, Love, and Happiness

  1. 4 out of 5

    Jr

    An informative introduction to Buddhist concepts, however a bit technical and confusing at times.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Dan

    This will be one of my shorter reviews for a simple reason. I was unable to complete this book. Teachings from the Dalai Lama are presented here as transcribed lectures presented at dharma celebrations in New Delhi. I must absolutely plead that my review of this book is in no way a review of the Buddhist faith or sets of beliefs. With that urgent disclaimer established, I have to declare this book utterly unreadable. This is only the second book in my life that I’ve had to set down, unfinished. I This will be one of my shorter reviews for a simple reason. I was unable to complete this book. Teachings from the Dalai Lama are presented here as transcribed lectures presented at dharma celebrations in New Delhi. I must absolutely plead that my review of this book is in no way a review of the Buddhist faith or sets of beliefs. With that urgent disclaimer established, I have to declare this book utterly unreadable. This is only the second book in my life that I’ve had to set down, unfinished. It’s conceivable that the lectures were engaging, satisfying, intellectually stimulating sessions in the presence of the Dalai Lama, but in print form, the lectures read with vastly less connection (to the reader) than a bad college algebra textbook. I do -not- pan this book for any philosophical disagreements or religious bias... I assure you of that. I am genuinely intrigued by His Holiness and I have the utmost respect for him, both as a leader of faith and as a representative of his genuinely repressed Tibetan people. All I can say is that after having spent much of a year trying to digest this albeit brief book, I simply can’t continue. I did endure through page 106 of the lecture “How to Live and Die in a Better Way”, but that’s where my struggle and my patience end, I’m afraid. Because of my respect for this man of peace, I feel sense of embarrassment and guilt as I type this review, but I must be honest about my impressions.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Katie Kenig

    Having gone through trials in the last few months that I never thought I'd have to face, this book couldn't have come into my life at a better time. I find myself in the position of trying to find it in my heart to forgive someone who not only committed completely unforgivable acts against myself and my family, but feels no remorse for it whatsoever. I need to forgive her because the anger is eating *me* up inside. As this book teaches, she is no different for my anger, it does not affect her in Having gone through trials in the last few months that I never thought I'd have to face, this book couldn't have come into my life at a better time. I find myself in the position of trying to find it in my heart to forgive someone who not only committed completely unforgivable acts against myself and my family, but feels no remorse for it whatsoever. I need to forgive her because the anger is eating *me* up inside. As this book teaches, she is no different for my anger, it does not affect her in any way, it only tears apart my own life and well being. I will never have the compassion of the Dalai Lama, but I am trying, walking in his path, to find enough of a portion of it to release the hatred and anger that is festering inside of me. This book helps me not lose sight of that path.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Ann L.

    This book is the Dalai Lama's lectures from the 1980's and 1990's. While I felt it was repetitive within the chapters for me, a beginner Dalai Lama reader may appreciate it more than I did. I have read many Dalai Lama books and the more recent ones are my favorite though, so in my opinion, even if you are a beginner reader, I would read a newer book of his before reading this one. You may find you don't even need to read this one at all. I was a bit bored with this book because of two reasons: I This book is the Dalai Lama's lectures from the 1980's and 1990's. While I felt it was repetitive within the chapters for me, a beginner Dalai Lama reader may appreciate it more than I did. I have read many Dalai Lama books and the more recent ones are my favorite though, so in my opinion, even if you are a beginner reader, I would read a newer book of his before reading this one. You may find you don't even need to read this one at all. I was a bit bored with this book because of two reasons: I've read his words before in other books and many of the chapters were repetitive in nature within the book. There were certain sections of the book where it talked to practicing Buddhists, in which I am not, and so I wasn't really interested in that part of his lectures. It got complicated with fancy Buddhist words/lingo and I kind of lost what he was truly saying because I felt it wasn't for me personally. Over all, I love the Dalai Lama's words of wisdom in how to treat yourself and others around us, how to live in peace and how to have compassion even for our enemies. His words always reminds me of being a better person than I already am, to constantly grow and learn when it is wise to open one's mouth and what to say when doing so. He is someone I truly look up to and there's not many people I do look up to. I see him, I hear him, I sense his being and I see the word "PEACE" all around him. I truly believe he lives what he speaks and he is a great example of a compassionate individual I can learn from.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Tom Vranas

    The book dives more into the Buddhist doctrines than other books by the DL. Luckily the structure of each chapter is such that you can read the first half of each chapter to avoid the more doctrine-related writings. Even with that, another great book.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Susan Ward

    Fair 196 pages

  7. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    i was reading the physical book, at the same time while listening to the audiobook. they do not follow each other well. the audiobook skips parts, and everything is out of order.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Matthew Stolte

    I have a hard time with Dalai Lama XIV's writings, but in this case when I finished I thought I should read it again! I prefer the question/ answer sections. I have a hard time with Dalai Lama XIV's writings, but in this case when I finished I thought I should read it again! I prefer the question/ answer sections.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Zach

    I'm not part of the Buddhist religion, but I find a great deal of peace and understanding in the Dalai Lama's teachings. He is wise and very compassionate. People often misunderstand the Buddhist religion. It is a "godless" religion in the sense of not believing in the same God that Christians do, but it is definitely not atheistic. You see, bodhissatvas are beings that have finally achieved fully enlightenment, recieved full happiness and inner peace, and is an expert at the cessation of suffer I'm not part of the Buddhist religion, but I find a great deal of peace and understanding in the Dalai Lama's teachings. He is wise and very compassionate. People often misunderstand the Buddhist religion. It is a "godless" religion in the sense of not believing in the same God that Christians do, but it is definitely not atheistic. You see, bodhissatvas are beings that have finally achieved fully enlightenment, recieved full happiness and inner peace, and is an expert at the cessation of suffering and has earned their way into Buddhahood. Even once they acheived that status they do not consider themselves "gods" per se, but holy ones that are "god-like" but not fully "Gods". Once they have achieved full enlightenment in the mortal life that we all live, (unlike those who haven't acheived enlightenment and pass away) they go to a Buddhist heaven realm (one of the six and one of the 36 sub-realms) and stay there for eternity, whereas one who hasn't acheived full enlightenment DOES go to either a Buddhist heaven or hell, but their stay is not eternal. For heaven it is roughly around 4,000 human years, but the stay in hell is not known to my knowledge, but it might be the same.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Ben Campopiano

    “Even if a room has been in darkness for a hundred years, when you flick the light on, the darkness goes away.” –HINDU PROVERB You can train your mind by analyzing other people’s experiences. By looking at history. Whenever I examine human tragedy, I find that in most cases it is the result of human behavior – negative emotions such as anger, hatred, jealousy, and extreme greed. When water is sprinkled it can’t move forcefully; when the same amount of water is channeled and focused, its energy or f “Even if a room has been in darkness for a hundred years, when you flick the light on, the darkness goes away.” –HINDU PROVERB You can train your mind by analyzing other people’s experiences. By looking at history. Whenever I examine human tragedy, I find that in most cases it is the result of human behavior – negative emotions such as anger, hatred, jealousy, and extreme greed. When water is sprinkled it can’t move forcefully; when the same amount of water is channeled and focused, its energy or force increases. There are two types of egos (one negative, one positive): 1) The feeling of “strong I” that forgets about others’ feelings, others’ rights, and in which one considers oneself more important than others. 2) This ego makes one feel “I can do this, I can help, I can serve.”

  11. 4 out of 5

    David Nichols

    I took the following lessons from this series of lectures that His Holiness gave in the 1980s and '90s: Be kind to others, practice nonviolence, avoid meat, use birth control, and meditate. I also read a number of passages like this: "If we take up a particular phenomenon and analyze its nature, in the end it cannot be found. For example, if we first analyze the flower to discover its ultimate nature and its reality, we will discover the emptiness or inherent nature of the emptiness, which cannot I took the following lessons from this series of lectures that His Holiness gave in the 1980s and '90s: Be kind to others, practice nonviolence, avoid meat, use birth control, and meditate. I also read a number of passages like this: "If we take up a particular phenomenon and analyze its nature, in the end it cannot be found. For example, if we first analyze the flower to discover its ultimate nature and its reality, we will discover the emptiness or inherent nature of the emptiness, which cannot be found. However, we will find the emptiness of the emptiness (170)." I concluded that in order to fully grasp the author's wisdom you either need to be a Buddhist monk, or Richard Gere. Unfortunately, I am neither.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jessie

    I am not a Buddhist. I read this book as a curious non believer. Large portions of it I ended up skimming as it mostly referred to specific ancient texts or debates on different schools of Buddhism. However, some of the chapters have genuine nuggets of wisdom. The chapter on nonviolence and compassion can be appreciated by anyone, regardless of beliefs. I wouldn't say this book was particularly enlightening for me, but I can now see why so many find the Dalai Lama a source of inspiration. Not a I am not a Buddhist. I read this book as a curious non believer. Large portions of it I ended up skimming as it mostly referred to specific ancient texts or debates on different schools of Buddhism. However, some of the chapters have genuine nuggets of wisdom. The chapter on nonviolence and compassion can be appreciated by anyone, regardless of beliefs. I wouldn't say this book was particularly enlightening for me, but I can now see why so many find the Dalai Lama a source of inspiration. Not a bad read and could definitely be helpful for someone struggling to find inner peace.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Roxanne

    Reading something by the Dalai Lama always makes me wonder if he still feels the same way. Sure, this is what he thought eighteen years ago, but maybe he's more enlightened now. Like when he said he preferred samsara to nirvana, because at least it was activity and feeling and life. So, I'm always looking for His Holiness 2.0. This was okay, maybe a little heavy on the advice to believers (practicing Buddhists), but still a good read. Reading something by the Dalai Lama always makes me wonder if he still feels the same way. Sure, this is what he thought eighteen years ago, but maybe he's more enlightened now. Like when he said he preferred samsara to nirvana, because at least it was activity and feeling and life. So, I'm always looking for His Holiness 2.0. This was okay, maybe a little heavy on the advice to believers (practicing Buddhists), but still a good read.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

    I enjoyed the first few chapters of this book much more than the last few. The great thing about the Dalai Lama is that he is a teacher. He can explain things in a way that anyone can understand. The first chapters were very helpful and gave some great advice. The later chapters dove too deep into dharma and Buddhist texts for the average person to understand. Though it did help spark my interest in Buddhism! I would recoomend this to others.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Viraj

    Interesting read. The main message is, help others as much as possible; if one cannot help, one should at least not harm others. Some things I could consider implementing are: doing breathing exercises, medication, possibly reducing or getting rid of non-veg diet etc. Dalai Lama does NOT advertise buddism much. I was glad about that. He discusses it though, which is what I wanted to know about anyway. I would like to listen to his other books.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

    I like the parts where he talks about getting rid of anger. This is a big deal for me, and I hold grudges and keep anger close to avoid getting hurt. I can't get behind the parts where the self is made a low priority. I work to make myself a priority too. There are some huge lessons you can take from this book, however, even if you are not Buddist. I like the parts where he talks about getting rid of anger. This is a big deal for me, and I hold grudges and keep anger close to avoid getting hurt. I can't get behind the parts where the self is made a low priority. I work to make myself a priority too. There are some huge lessons you can take from this book, however, even if you are not Buddist.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Hannah

    Forced me to look at my life, an where I find happiness in it, and made me realize that some of the ways I find happiness are not really creating happiness, and helping lead a better and more fulfilling life. I am taking the knowledge and awareness this book has brought me and will be utilizing it in my daily life.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Jackie

    I read this in 2001, and it helped me to consider how my life impacts others. The readings help to get in touch with your compassionate side and gain perspective on living outside yourself and your worries. I really need to re-read this again very soon.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Brad

    A couple of his speeches were really informative. Others were less germane to my life as a nonbeliever. The question and answer parts of these books always hit on something. "'What makes his holiness most happy?' 'Sound sleep and good food!'" A couple of his speeches were really informative. Others were less germane to my life as a nonbeliever. The question and answer parts of these books always hit on something. "'What makes his holiness most happy?' 'Sound sleep and good food!'"

  20. 5 out of 5

    Adam Lauver

    A vital, inspirational collection of extremely important and beautiful ideas. A good read even if you're not too interested in Buddhism; the spiritual theses here ought to resonate with all seekers of harmony and truth, regardless of their personal beliefs. Read it! A vital, inspirational collection of extremely important and beautiful ideas. A good read even if you're not too interested in Buddhism; the spiritual theses here ought to resonate with all seekers of harmony and truth, regardless of their personal beliefs. Read it!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Brooklyn James

    Great read. Speaks well to removing suffering from life by rethinking attachment and it's variables. Highly recommend to anyone reflective who may enjoy a thinking read. This books pays tribute to a healthy attitude and enlightenment. Great read. Speaks well to removing suffering from life by rethinking attachment and it's variables. Highly recommend to anyone reflective who may enjoy a thinking read. This books pays tribute to a healthy attitude and enlightenment.

  22. 4 out of 5

    John Jolly

    This was a very in-depth look at Buddhism, being happy, and the Dalai Lama's thoughts on life. It included questions from his seminars and his commentaries on certain topics. This was a very in-depth look at Buddhism, being happy, and the Dalai Lama's thoughts on life. It included questions from his seminars and his commentaries on certain topics.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Cherie

    More wisdom from the Dalai Lama

  24. 4 out of 5

    Christina Jones

    Slightly dry, but very informative. The Dali Lama has such a big heart and it shows!!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Alisha Niehaus Berger

    So many wonderful suggestions on how to reduce my suffering...it's the putting them into practice that's so hard!!! So many wonderful suggestions on how to reduce my suffering...it's the putting them into practice that's so hard!!!

  26. 5 out of 5

    Drinkncoffee

    I found this to be another meaty book on Buddhism. I have to go back and re-read paragraphs in order to fully comprehend and savor the concepts.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Robyn

    If life stresses you out, read this book and it'll put everything in perspective! You don't have to be religious to get something out of this book. If life stresses you out, read this book and it'll put everything in perspective! You don't have to be religious to get something out of this book.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Lynn Manning

    A thoughtful, happy experience

  29. 5 out of 5

    Dana

    I read this to learn more about Buddhism and the Dalai Lama. I had many philosophical "aha" moments as I read this collection of lectures. I read this to learn more about Buddhism and the Dalai Lama. I had many philosophical "aha" moments as I read this collection of lectures.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Cameron

    This is my early morning reading meditative reading. Who better than the Dalai Lama XIV to get your spirit engaged and going in a positive direction?

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