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Today’s letter is very simple.

I want to recommend a lovely book to you.

It’s “Search Inside Yourself” by Chade-Meng Tan.

The reason I like it is because it is written so simply, clearly, and with a good dose of humor.

The humor is already evident in the title since he’s one of Google’s earliest engineers and personal growth pioneer. (“Search” and Google is the greatest search engine in the world!)

Basically, it’s about happiness.

He so clearly explains the importance of noticing the difference between stimulus and response.

If we can learn how to distinguish these, to separate them, and see that, as the Buddha taught, the suffering is in our response to pain and pleasure, not the pain and pleasure itself.

The suffering in pain is our aversion to it.

The suffering in pleasure is our grasping onto it.

A trained mind distinguishes these two moments.

There may be nothing we can do about the stimulus.

But there is certainly something we can do about our response.

Jon Kabbat-Zinn, in his highly influential book, “Full Catastrophe Living”, talks about the issue of mindfulness and how this method can actually help us cope with pain. Kabbat-Zinn actually wrote the forward to Tan’s book.

So clear.

So simple.

And so effective if we can learn and apply this powerful truth.

I’m recommending it to everyone so I thought I’d share it with you.