'The Way to Freedom' by the Dalai Lama
The Way to Freedom
By his holiness, the Dalai Lama of Tibet

This book, a primer on Tibetan philosophy and Buddhist teachings, addresses in a very straightforward way the elements of unhappiness. In the introduction, the Dalai Lama talks about the struggle between the negative and positive forces in our brains. I took from the book that we can work to eliminate the causes of our suffering. If, for instance, negative thoughts are preventing you from feeling happy, can you practice for 20 seconds a day not having a pessimistic thought? The minute you try, though, an onslaught of negativity runs into your brain. But I found it to be a very interesting exploration of how our minds work. You sit there for 20 seconds and go, Hmm, can I not have a negative thought? Of course, I can't—that guy yesterday did that f---ing thing. Then you realize how, through meditation, you can control those thoughts, and you can do it longer and longer.