In this small book His Holiness the Dalai Lama presents a completely comprehensive, easy to understand explanation and discussion on The Four Noble Truths, which are the foundation of the Buddhist teaching. Yet the book transcends religious beliefs and is actually a book on living happily and peacefully no matter what one's beliefs are. This book, therefore, is for anyone and everyone who is interested in living a more peaceful life. His Holiness explains the most complex issues of human existence in a form that is so simple anyone can understand. He readily gives examples and compassionately faces all alternative arguments to the issues. Everything makes sense. He includes a complete glossary and recommendations for further reading. The last chapter focuses on compassion, complementing the teaching on The Four Noble Truths, and beautifully illustrates how the teachings can be applied to daily life. One completes the reading with no unanswered questions and a profound feeling of peace. It is an inspiring, uplifting, informative little book that will be read over and over again.
PS: Great for gift giving too.
Besides offering a thorough exposition of Mahayana belief, and indeed practice, with an anything but common traversal of the Four Noble Truths by a master, in these four videos one is invited to spend a few intimate hours in the presence of the Dalai Lama, always an ennobling experience. The camera work in this film is especially fine, making of the camera one's own eyes, as it were, and lifting the hours even lighter than they already seem. With respect to another of the reviews on this page, I found the necessary translation from the stage handled superbly, and clearly with a great deal of thought and natural reverence. In Thubten Jimpa, the Dalai Lama employs a beautifully adept translator, an interpreter not only brilliantly attuned to the words and thoughts of the Dalai Lama, but one so obviously loved by him, and who responds with a special kind of faithfulness, that a marvelous duet is often played out, only enhancing thereby this great teacher's magisterial presentation. I would add that one feels as well the 'Englishness' of the audience, so eager to quietly offer their accepting energy, so ready to listen, far more so than might be a gathering of Americans usually so conscious of themselves in the moment. The humor that ripples often between the Dalai Lama and his listeners throughout the evening is so generous and unaffected, one is returned again and again to the meaning behind the words, the experience behind the event. This is a film of the highest achievment, fortunately within the reach of us all. An unforgettable few hours!