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Buffs One Read 2023-2024 : Book of Joy

Book Cover: Profile photograph of the Dalia Lama and the Archbishop facing each other

The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World

In celebration of the Dalai Lama's 80th birthday, Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Douglas Abrams journeyed to the Dalai Lama's home in Dharamsala, India. Abrams facilitated a dialogue between two "mischievous spiritual brothers", Desmond Tutu and the Dalai Lama, to uncover how to live a life of joy. The two men have led astonishing lives full of hardships; nonetheless, these international icons have acted tirelessly for freedom, justice, and peace and have done so with warmth, laughter, and joy.

In the Book of Joy, readers are invited to explore their wise teachings on joy, the science of joy, and joy practices. The stories exchanged provide a glimpse into their long lives and offer inspiration for finding joy in "the face of life's inevitable suffering."

Despite coming from two different spiritual traditions, the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Tutu approach the cultivation of joy in similar ways. Both believe that suffering is inevitable and serves as an obstacle to experiencing joy... Joy, for them, is manifested internally and transcends happiness, which is often dependent upon external circumstances.

They outline eight pillars of joy, divided by mind (perspective, humility, humor, acceptance) and heart (forgiveness, gratitude, compassion, generosity). The question may be timeless, but their answer has urgent significance.

This book is a one-of-a-kind teaching, a rare delight for those who want to live their lives more fully, with the ability to look adversity in the eye and find their first reaction is to breathe deeply and smile.

This sparkling, wise, and immediately useful gift to readers from two remarkable spiritual masters offers hope that joy is possible for everyone even in the most difficult circumstances, and describes a clear path for attaining it.

Through stories about their world-changing actions, their various intensive spiritual practices, and their respect for contemporary science and other fields of knowledge they guide the reader through the complexities of finding happiness and joy in a profoundly “changing world.”



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