Book Review-"The Book of Joy"

d Geethu Mohan  |   3 mins read March 15, 2022 | 180 eye icon


“As for suffering I do not wish even the slightest;
    As for happiness I am never satisfied.
In this, there is no difference between others and me.
Bless me so I may take joy in others’ happiness. “
                                                               (Panchen Lama, Tibet)

I have begun the write-up with the beautiful prayer from the Tibetan text to cultivate joy. Joy can be found in every moment of life; the only point is that we need to realise it; which many a time we, as humans, do not remember to. 

Every human being in our era is running against time as we are constantly searching for joy. This book tells us what joy actually is and that we need to realise how happy we are. It tries to transform our thought process of viewing life. The book revolves around a conversation between spiritual giants His Holiness Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu, both of whom have survived years of hardship. The leaders have attempted to share their understanding of what life is in its true sense and how we actually miss out on living and breathing when we try to row the boat.

Joy should not be the ultimate goal of one’s life, rather it should be the ambiance of our life. We often pin happiness to various parameters or turning points like getting graduated, achieving a dream job, getting married, having kids – but then what about other moments in our life? Like having dinner with your family on a Sunday night or lying down with your sibling and enjoying the cool downpour while your mom hands over hot cocoa and scolds you for being lazy. Yes, of course, all these are moments that make one feel happy only if you realise it. These are indeed precious blessed moments. Most often, we do not recognize how happy and fortunate we are unless and until we go back in time – that’s when Nostalgia hits.

The book “Joy of Life” is divided into different segments detailing how to deal with the different aspects of life, enriched with experiences and examples from the noted spiritual leaders. It makes one perceive that life is indeed peaceful and happy, it is us who makes it look more and more stressful. Every chapter makes us comprehend and see a parallel side of various events, the one which we could have focused on. Many a time, the conversations amaze us to such an extent that we wonder why we couldn’t find life as simple earlier. It helps one to discover these theories and truly experience them by applying them to one’s life.

This book lights the peaceful path to a life that we could take by reminding us that “Happiness can be even found in the darkest of times if only one remembers to turn on the light.”

Geethu Mohan
Assessor and Faculty
Athena Global Education

Geethu Mohan is a Management professional with rich industry experience. She is a voracious reader and has actively contributed to research and development over the years. Her interest lies in reading, academic and creative writing.

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