It was a soft September evening. Magic hour. Four years ago. Vicky, my mother, and I were sitting in her garden, talking about love, light and enlightenment. Three days before that she’d been coaching me about the breakdown of my marriage. Suddenly she’d said something of such spectacular insight that it flipped me into a state of enlightenment. For almost seventy-two hours my mind was silent, my heart was full, and I was just supremely happy.

On the third day I fell back to earth with a bump. Vicky asked me what happened and I replied that it was: “men, money and chocolate”. The words just came to me. We both knew what they meant and we laughed, despite the rather tragic fact that most people fearfully believed, as I now, did that love, success and pleasure were essential sources of happiness, without which they’d be miserable.

For three days I’d known this wasn’t true and, whenever I started slipping back into the fear that it was, I’d had Vicky there to coach be back to reality. Not the usual reality of course, not the one that most of society believes is true, but the reality my heart knew to be true: that I already had everything I needed to be happy inside me.

Unfortunately Vicky couldn’t monitor me all the time and, my state of enlightenment still fresh and fragile, it soon succumbed to the fearful thoughts that still lingered in my mind. But, the insight and inspiration of those three days never left me and four years later I wrote this book, Men, Money & Chocolate, about my experiences.

Over the years, as this book was simmering inside me, it became my mission to share these experiences of enlightenment with other people, to show them that life doesn’t have to be lived in fear, to show them happiness secrets about spiritual living in the material world, about how to live from your heart instead of your head. I got most of those secrets from Vicky, who continued to coach me along the way, and now I share them with you.

Menna van Praag is a writer on psychological and spiritual topics. She has been published in magazines and newspapers across the world. Her first book, Men, Money & Chocolate, will be published by Hay House in the spring. It's a spiritual fable about a young woman who finds that true happiness isn't to be found where she thinks...

Men, Money & Chocolate is currently available on Amazon.

Author's Bio: 

Menna van Praag is a freelance writer and journalist. When she was twenty she decided to be an author. Then she fell in love, got married and went to Oxford university. Ten years later, after lots of writing, waitressing, and sticking to her dreams at all costs, she finally published her first book. A year later that book was picked up and published by Hay House. Now Menna no longer waitresses but spends her time writing, leaping around Lindy Hopping, belting out Abba off-key and vainly attempting to master simple yoga positions. She lives in Cambridge with her husband Artur and their ever-expanding collection of books and films.