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20 Best Books About Dalai Lama That Will Change your Life

Dalai Lama speaking

Books about Dalai Lama: Dalai Lama s a title given by the Tibetan people to the foremost spiritual leader of the Gelug or “Yellow Hat” school of Tibetan Buddhism, the newest of the classical schools of Tibetan Buddhism. The 14th and current Dalai Lama is Tenzin Gyatso, who lives as a refugee in India. The Dalai Lama is also considered to be the successor in a line of tulkus who are believed to be incarnations of Avalokiteśvara, a Bodhisattva of Compassion.  Please enjoy our list of the 20 best books by Dalai Lama.

Common Questions about Dalai Lama

How was the 14th Dalai Lama discovered?

The 14th spiritual leader of Tibet was recognized as the reincarnation of the 13th lama when he was just a child. Lhamo Thondup was just a 2-year-old boy, one of seven children living on a farm in a small Tibetan village, when a search party declared him the 14th Dalai Lama.

Who will replace the Dalai Lama?

In a 2004 interview with Time, the current Dalai Lama stated: The institution of the Dalai Lama, and whether it should continue or not, is up to the Tibetan people. If they feel it is not relevant, then it will cease and there will be no 15th Dalai Lama.

Is Tibet free from China?

The People’s Republic of China (PRC) claims that Tibet is an integral part of China. The Tibetan government-in-exile maintains that Tibet is an independent state under unlawful occupation. … Instead, it bases it claim to Tibet solely on the theory that Tibet has been an integral part of China for centuries.

Books About Dalai Lama

The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World by Dalai Lama , Desmond Tut

Nobel Peace Prize Laureates His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu have survived more than fifty years of exile and the soul-crushing violence of oppression. Despite their hardships—or, as they would say, because of them—they are two of the most joyful people on the planet.

In April 2015, Archbishop Tutu traveled to the Dalai Lama’s home in Dharamsala, India, to celebrate His Holiness’s eightieth birthday and to create what they hoped would be a gift for others. They looked back on their long lives to answer a single burning question: How do we find joy in the face of life’s inevitable suffering?

They traded intimate stories, teased each other continually, and shared their spiritual practices. By the end of a week filled with laughter and punctuated with tears, these two global heroes had stared into the abyss and despair of our time and revealed how to live a life brimming with joy.

This book offers us a rare opportunity to experience their astonishing and unprecendented week together, from the first embrace to the final good-bye.

The Art of Happiness by His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Howard C. Cutler M.D

The Dalai Lama is probably one of the only people who, if you ask him if he’s happy, even though he’s suffered the loss of his country, will give you an unconditional “yes.” What’s more, he’ll tell you that happiness is the purpose of life, and the “the very motion of our life is toward happiness.” How to get there has always been the question. He’s tried to answer it before, but he’s never had the help of a psychiatrist to get the message across in a context we can easily understand.

Through meditation, stories, and the meeting of Buddhism and psychology, the Dalai Lama shows us how to defeat day-to-day depression, anxiety, anger, jealousy, or just an ordinary bad mood. He discusses relationships, health, family, work, and spirituality to show us how to ride through life’s obstacles on a deep, abiding source of inner peace. Based on 2,500 years of Buddhist meditations and with a healthy dose of common sense, The Art of Happiness is a program that crosses the boundaries of all traditions to help listeners with the difficulties common to all human beings.

Our Only Home: A Climate Appeal to the World by Dalai Lama, Franz Alt

Saving the climate is our common duty. With each passing day, climate change is causing Pacific islands to disappear into the sea, accelerating the extinction of species at alarming proportions, and aggravating a water shortage that has affected the entire world. In short, climate change can no longer be denied – it threatens our existence on earth.

In this new audiobook, the Dalai Lama, one of the most influential figures of our time, calls on political decision makers to finally fight against deadlock and ignorance on this issue and to stand up for a different, more climate-friendly world and for the younger generation to assert their right to regain their future.

The Tibetan Book of the Dead: First Complete Translation (Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition) by Graham Coleman , Thupten Jinpa

Graced with opening words by His Holiness The Dalai Lama, the Penguin Deluxe Edition of The Tibetan Book of the Dead is “immaculately rendered in an English both graceful and precise.” Translated with the close support of leading contemporary masters and hailed as “a tremendous accomplishment,” this book faithfully presents the insights and intentions of the original work. It includes one of the most detailed and compelling descriptions of the after-death state in world literature, practices that can transform our experience of daily life, guidance on helping those who are dying, and an inspirational perspective on coping with bereavement.

An Introduction to Buddhism Part of: Core Teachings of Dalai Lama by Dalai Lama, Roger Allum

There is no one more suited to introduce beginners – and remind seasoned practitioners – of the fundamentals of Tibetan Buddhism than His Holiness the Dalai Lama. 

Speaking to an audience of Western students, the Dalai Lama shows us how to apply basic Buddhist principles to our day-to-day lives. Starting with the very foundation of Buddhism, the Four Noble Truths, he provides the framework for understanding the Buddha’s first teachings on suffering, happiness, and peace. 

He follows with commentary on two of Buddhism’s most profound texts: The Eight Verses on Training the Mind and Atisha’s Lamp for the Path to Enlightenment, often referring to the former as one of his main sources of inspiration for the practice of compassion. 

With clear, accessible language and the familiar sense of humor that infuses nearly all of his work, the Dalai Lama invites us all to develop innermost awareness, a proper understanding of the nature of reality, and heartfelt compassion for all beings.

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Perfecting Patience: Buddhist Techniques to Overcome Anger (Core Teachings of Dalai Lama) by The Dalai Lama and Thupten Jinpa

All of the world’s major religions emphasize the importance of love, compassion, and tolerance. This is particularly true in the Buddhist traditions, which unanimously state that compassion and love are the foundation of all paths of practice. To cultivate the potential for compassion and love inherent within us, it is crucial to counteract their opposing forces of anger and hatred. In Perfecting Patience, the Dalai Lama shows how, through the practice of patience and tolerance, we can overcome the obstacles of anger and hatred. He bases his discussion on A Guide to the Bodhisattva Way of Life, the classic work on the activities of bodhisattvas—those who aspire to attain full enlightenment in order to benefit all beings.

Be Happy by Dalai Lama

Nobody wakes up in the morning wishing for more trouble that day. However, emotional trouble–unhappiness–is essentially our own creation. This book explores two things you need to know about unhappiness and how to replace it with joy. The first is the failure to understand reality, and the second is egotism. Together they result in distress, dis-ease, and a failure to take personal responsibility.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama counsels readers to take responsibility for their thoughts and actions; to understand that our problems are of our own making and not the result circumstances or the actions of others. He presents a path for taking charge of our lives.

Accessible, direct, and down-to-earth, this slender volume is for fans of the Dalai Lama, as well as anyone looking for an easy-to-understand guide to an authentic and joyful life.

My Land and My People: The Original Autobiography of His Holiness the Dalai Lama of Tibet by The Dalai Lama

Schooled behind ancient palace walls to become the leader of Tibet, the Dalai Lama has become a spiritual leader to the world and a leading civil rights advocate. My Land and My People tells the story of his life.

The Dalai Lama's Cat by David Michie

Not so much fly-on-the-wall as cat-on-the-sill, this is the warmhearted tale of a small kitten rescued from the slums of New Delhi who finds herself in a beautiful sanctuary with sweeping views of the snow-capped Himalayas. In her exotic new home, the Dalai Lama’s cat encounters Hollywood stars, Buddhist masters, Ivy-league professors, famous philanthropists, and a host of other people who come visiting His Holiness. Each encounter offers a fresh insight into finding happiness and meaning in the midst of a life of busy-ness and challenge. Drawing us into her world with her adorable but all-too-flawed personality, the Dalai Lama’s cat discovers how instead of trying to change the world, changing the way we experience the world is the key to true contentment.

The Seed of Compassion: Lessons from the Life and Teachings of His Holiness the Dalai Lama by His Holiness The Dalai Lama and Bao Luu

One of today’s most inspiring world leaders was once an ordinary child named Lhamo Thondup. In a small village in Tibet, his mother was his first great teacher of compassion. In everyday moments from his childhood, young readers begin to see that important lessons are all around us, and that they, too, can grow to truly understand them.

With simple, powerful text, the Dalai Lama shares the universalist teachings of treating one another with compassion, which Bao Luu illustrates beautifully in vibrant color. In an increasingly confusing world, The Seed of Compassion offers guidance and encouragement on how we all might bring more kindness to it.

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The Dalai Lama’s Cat and the Four Paws of Spiritual Success by David Michie and Bolinda Publishing

“If you’re wondering how being in the presence of an enlightened person may be communicated on the pages of book written by a flawed and complex—if extremely beautiful—cat, let me confess that my only job here is to offer you a mirror. A looking glass of a particular kind. One that reflects back not the contours of your nose or the arch of your brow, but which provides a much deeper reflection of who and what you are.

Look closely, dear reader, there’s no need to be afraid. For what you will discover, if you ever doubted it, is that your own true nature is quite different from whatever flecks and imperfections may temporarily obscure it. At heart you are a being whose pristine nature is nothing other than pure, great love and pure, great compassion.

Beyond Religion: Ethics for a Whole World by Dalai Lama and Alexander Norman

Ten years ago, in the best-selling Ethics for a New Millennium, His Holiness the Dalai Lama first proposed an approach to ethics based on universal rather than religious principles. With Beyond Religion, he returns to the conversation at his most outspoken, elaborating and deepening his vision for the nonreligious way—a path to lead an ethical, happy, and spiritual life. Transcending the religion wars, he outlines a system of ethics for our shared world, one that makes a stirring appeal for a deep appreciation of our common humanity, offering us all a road map for improving human life on individual, community, and global levels.

The Dalai Lama's Big Book of Happiness: How to Live in Freedom, Compassion, and Love by Dalai Lama and Renuka Singh

Everyone wants to be happy. Here in this profound volume is a road map for discovering a life filled with happiness, joy, and a sense of purpose. The Dalai Lama’s basic premise is that each of us is responsible for our own health and happiness and for the health of society. He further asserts that health and happiness are within our reach–both individually and collectively.

How a person thinks, behaves, and feels ultimately impacts not only their own lives, but also the society in which they live. If you desire to attain happiness, you must understand that the journey begins with you. It is only then that you can reach out and touch the lives of others and change society.

In this anthology, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, with characteristic wisdom, humor, and kindness, directs readers toward a happy, healthy, and peaceful life. Talking about universal themes such as compassion, peace, non-violence, secularism, and the pursuit of a healthy mind and body, he reminds us that the responsibility to change our thoughts, actions, and lives lies within our power.

HumanKind: Changing the World One Small Act At a Time by Brad Aronson

Brad Aronson’s life changed in an instant when his wife, Mia, was diagnosed with leukemia. After her diagnosis, Brad spent most of the next two and a half years either by her side as she received treatment or trying to shield their five-year-old son, Jack, from the worst of Mia’s illness. Amid the stress and despair of waiting for the treatment to work, Brad and Mia were met by an outpouring of kindness from friends, family and even complete strangers.
 
Inspired by the many demonstrations of “humankindness” that supported their family through Mia’s recovery, Brad began writing about the people who rescued his family from that dark time, often with the smallest of gestures. But he didn’t stop there. Knowing that simple acts of kindness transform lives across the globe every day, he sought out these stories and shares some of the best ones here.

No-Nonsense Buddhism for Beginners: Clear Answers to Burning Questions About Core Buddhist Teachings by Noah Rasheta

How is an awakening different from enlightenment? Can agnostics and atheists be Buddhist? Am I supposed to stop thinking when I meditate? In No-Nonsense Buddhism for Beginners, renowned Buddhism teacher and host of the popular Secular Buddhism podcast, Noah Rasheta, delivers an easily accessible introduction to the teachings of Buddhism that answers these common questions and many more.

With No-Nonsense Buddhism for Beginners you’ll gain a fundamental understanding of Buddhism and how to apply the philosophies in your everyday life, through:

  • A simple 4-part structure addressing the different aspects of Buddhism―the Buddha, key Buddhist concepts, the Buddha’s teachings, and current Buddhist practices
  • Straightforward Q&A’s that simplify the vital concepts of Buddhism into easy-to-understand ideas
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Dalai Lama: 365 Selected Quotes on Love, Life, and Happiness by Nico Neruda

This book is a categorized collection of selected quotes by Tenzin Gyatso (14th Dalai Lama), the foremost spiritual leader of the Gelug or “Yellow Hat” school of Tibetan Buddhism. Buddhists are followers of Gautama Buddha (c. 563–c. 483 B.C.E. ), who believed the troubles of this life can be overcome through moral and mental discipline.

  • Quotes categorized into wide variety of subjects
  • Inspirational and uplifting quotes, deep and profound, short, wise and enlightening, love, god and religion, life and mortality, etc.)
  • Perfect for daily reading
  • TIP: 1) Absorb the wisdom and ponder at a leisurely pace. 2) Practice

Freedom in Exile: The Autobiography of The Dalai Lama by Dalai Lama

In this astonishingly frank autobiography, the Dalai Lama reveals the remarkable inner strength that allowed him to master both the mysteries of Tibetan Buddhism and the brutal realities of Chinese Communism.

The Four Agreements by by don Miguel Ruiz, Peter Coyote

In The Four Agreements, don Miguel Ruiz reveals the source of self-limiting beliefs that rob us of joy and create needless suffering. Based on ancient Toltec wisdom, The Four Agreements offer a powerful code of conduct that can rapidly transform our lives to a new experience of freedom, true happiness, and love

How to See Yourself As You Really Are Dec 5, 2006 by Dalai Lama , Jeffrey Hopkins , Jeffrey Ph.D. Hopkins

Like the two wings of a bird, love and insight work cooperatively to bring about enlightenment, says a fundamental Buddhist teaching. According to His Holiness the Dalai Lama, we each possess the ability to achieve happiness and a meaningful life, but the key to realizing that goal is self-knowledge. In How to See Yourself As You Really Are, the world’s foremost Buddhist leader and recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize shows readers how to recognize and dispel misguided notions of self and embrace the world from a more realistic — and loving — perspective.

Step-by-step exercises help readers shatter their false assumptions and ideas and see the world as it actually exists. By directing our attention to the false veneer that so bedazzles our senses and our thoughts, His Holiness sets the stage for discovering the reality behind appearances. But getting past one’s misconceptions is only a prelude to right action, and the book’s final section describes how to harness the power of meditative concentration to the service of love, and vice versa, so that true altruistic enlightenment is attained.

My Spiritual Journey: Personal Reflections, Teachings, and Talks by Dalai Lama and Sofia Stril-Rever

In this elegant self-portrait, the world’s most outspoken and influential spiritual leader recounts his epic and engaging life story. The Dalai Lama’s most accessible and intimate book, My Spiritual Journey is an excellent introduction to the larger-than-life leader of Tibetan Buddhism—perfect for anyone curious about Eastern religion, invested in the Free Tibet movement, or simply seeking a richer spiritual life. The Dalai Lama’s riveting, deeply insightful meditations on life will resonate strongly with readers of Pema Chodron, Thich Nhat Hanh, or the His Holiness’s own The Art of Happiness and Ethics for the New Millennium.