"The battle for happiness is fought and won or lost primarily within the mind. The mind is the absolute key, both to enlightenment and to life. When the mind is peaceful, aware, and under your command,you will be securely happy. When your mind is unaware of its true nature, constantly in turmoil, and in command of you, you will suffer endlessly."
Robert Thurman, "Infinite Life: Awakening to Bliss Within" (Riverhead books, New York: 2004, p. 35). Robert Thurman, a close friend and student of the Dalai Lama, was the first Westerner initiated as a full monk in the Tibetan Bhuddist tradition, before doffing the monk's robes and returning to New York where he is a prolific author, lecturer and tenured Professor at Columbia University. Mr. Thurman's efforts on behalf of humanity in spreading the Bhudda's great message of liberation and on behalf of the Tibetan people struggling to preserve their culture and their message for humanity about Tibet's millennia old experiment in inner spiritual and cultural transcendence have been tireless. It was Mr. Thurman who first turned the Wheel of the Dharma for me as I struggled towards a near fatal life-crisis, when I viewed a recording of the second of his three-part lectures for Tibet House on the Bhudda, the Dharma and the Sangha.