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Recently, after my client Joan had her hair done at juju, I invited her to join me for a trip to nearby Garland of Letters.  Garland of Letters, you ask? Well, THE place for Inspirational literature: New Thought, Spirituality, Self-Help- generally for seekers of self knowledge of any and all disposition.  Garland of Letters has been offering Philadelphians everything from yoga to incense for the last 30 years. In a word, “bliss.”  Joan, a fellow soul-mate/soul-seeker needed no convincing – we were off!

Happier, by Tal Ben-Shahar, Ph.D., fell from the shelf as I wished for guidance. “Oh! I gave this book to a few friends for Christmas last year.” My friend assured me this was more than just happenstance. ‘Learn the Secrets to Daily Joy and Lasting Fulfillment…’ it promises.  Sold.

Once again, I am reminded, as I chapter through Ben-Shahar’s pages, that “Happiness depends upon ourselves” (Aristotle).  As suggested, I’ve committed to a gratitude journal, my meditation practice and exercises to simplify and de-stress my life.

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I can’t believe my eyes…right there, on the back of a bus, bigger than big, is this wonderful image: Persepolis reading Persepolis!  My family LOVES Persepolis: we’ve watched the movie 100 times, Santa filled the stockings with Persepolis books 1 and 2…now it seems, Persepolis fever has infected not only my family, but the whole city.  The Philadelphia Free Library (god love them) has chosen Marjane Satrapi’s The Complete Persepolisas the featured selection for 2010’s One Book, One Philadelphia.   This “is a joint project of the Mayor’s Office and the Free Library of Philadelphia that promotes reading, literacy, library use, and community building by motivating tens of thousands of people to read an annual featured selection. Marking the eighth consecutive year for One Book, the 2010 program runs from January 20 to March 17, 2010.”  Previous books featured in this project included Steve Lopez’s The Soloist.

Persepolis, a graphic novel…er…comic book, is Ms. Satrapi’s personal story about growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution.  Favorite parts include ‘Margie’s’ young adult life in exile in Paris, befriending, hanging out and trying to fit in with sophmoric Euro-poseurs. The Free Library’s One Book Committee chose this tale, in part, because of recent election protests in Iran.

Read this now! You’ll have Persepolis fever too, I promise.

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