New Read: Don’t Believe Everything You Think

“Don’t believe everything you think” That seems like good advice, don’t you… think?!

See what I did there?

don't believe everything you think

Thubten Chodron’s book “Don’t Believe Everything You Think: Living With Wisdom and Compassion” is my first spiritual/self-help kind of book of 2023. I’m usually reading at least two books at the same time; one non-fiction and one self-help. Sometimes I add in a third one, usually a work of fiction, something to dive into with a cup of tea in the afternoon as a break from my day.

This one is going through The Thirty-seven Practices of Bodhisattvas, each with a commentary and a few personal stories to illustrate each one. While I read the introduction, I wondered how I would use this book for my own journey and have decided that I’ll read one of the thirty-seven verses and its commentary each day. If I find that verse resonating, maybe I’ll write some personal story of my own.

The following are lines that stood out to me in the introduction.

“The Buddha didn’t talk of suffering so that we would get depressed. Feeling depressed is useless. We think about the cyclic existence and its causes so that we will act to free ourselves from it.”

You can’t fix something you don’t know is broken, and we are clearly very much broken these days. Just spend some time in a public group on Facebook and you’ll find one instance after another. It’s almost overwhelming. Something I’ve been rolling around in my mind this past year has been, “How do I do my part to stem the tide of negativity and nastiness I find there?”

I’m not sure what the answer is, but I do know that the place to start is with myself.

“Our happiness depends on what is going on in our mind. If our mind is contaminated with ignorance, the result is cyclic existence. If the mind is imbued with wisdom and compassion, the result is enlightenment.”

I’ve come across so many examples of this in my own daily existence. One day it’s fine that you commented on something, the next day there is murder on my mind because you dared. It has nothing to do with what you said or did, it’s me. The trick for me is to learn a way to keep the wisdom and compassion foremost in my mind so that I react in a peaceful way that calms the water around me, instead of riling it up even more.

That’s all I have on this book today, but I know there will be more in the coming weeks. I’m looking forward to learning and sharing as I go!


  1. I’ll look forward to your learning and sharing as you go too! I enjoyed this blog and salute your resolve to calm the waters rather than stirring things up. That, in and of itself, will go a long way toward adding peace and love to the world (and maybe Facebook too). By the way, your ‘like’ button still doesn’t work. But I guess you know that, huh?

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