Book cover of The Path to Happiness

The Path to Happiness

This book is a compilation of Dharma talks given at the Jade Buddha Temple in Houston, Texas on practical Buddhism in daily life, dealing with anxiety, and Buddhism in modern society.


© Thubten Chodron, 1999. Strictly for free distribution and not to be sold. First published in 1999 by Amitabha Buddhist Centre, Singapore and based on Dharma talks given at the Jade Buddha Temple in Houston, Texas.


  • Introduction by Caroline Chen, Editor
  • Practicing Buddhism in Daily Life
  • Dealing with Anxiety
  • Buddhism in Modern Society
  • Questions and Answers


It is very good for children to see their parents sit still and be calm. That gives them the idea that maybe they too can do the same. If Mom and Dad are always busy, running around, talking on the phone, stressed out, or collapsed in front of the TV, the kids will also be like this. Is this what you want for your children? If you want your children to learn certain attitudes or behaviors, you have to cultivate them yourselves. Otherwise, how will your children learn? If you care about your children, you have to care about yourselves as well and be mindful of living a healthy and balanced life for their benefit as well as for your own.

You can also teach your children how to make offerings to the Buddha and how to recite simple prayers and mantras. Once, I stayed with a friend and her three-year-old daughter. Every morning when we got up, we would all bow three times to the Buddha. Then, the little girl would give the Buddha a present — a cookie or some fruit — and the Buddha would give her a present also, a sweet or a cracker. It was very nice for the child, because at age three she was establishing a good relationship with the Buddha and at the same time was learning to be generous and share things. When my friend cleaned the house, did chores or went places with her daughter, they would chant mantras together. The little girl loved the melodies of the mantras. This helped her because whenever she got upset or frightened, she knew she could chant mantras to calm herself down.