When I happened to come across a passionate Instagram post singing the praises of one the latest spiritual book releases “The Book Of Joy” I was pretty unconvinced that it would differ much from the many others you can find in your local Waterstones. Though intrigued by the offerings of wisdom that both 14th Dala Lama and The Archbishop Tutu could undoubtedly give, I purchased the book.
With the full title being ‘Book Of Joy: Lasting Happiness In A Changing World’ the chapters follow a week of philosophical and unscripted conversations between both the holy men, as they discuss their own beliefs on how they successfully obtain happiness in times of adversity. They journey through their own religious attitudes and honestly recall their own times of lost faith. Within the 1st chapter, the reader is put at ease by the childish humour both the men share with one another, mirroring a conversation between two old friends, rather than two men who have both won the Nobel Peace Prize. As the book continues, it rejects any of the stereotypes often paired with spiritual reads and quickly cements itself as a universally relatable book within the following 4 chapters. Refreshingly, the book advocates an attitude which eradicates the importance of knowing what religion holds or does not hold the answers to happiness and focuses more on the need for universal compassion throughout all religions, races, and nationalities.
Arguably a book of huge relevance for today’s modern world, the light-hearted but fundamental attitude that runs throughout, showcases the infinite benefits of thinking, loving and giving outwardly. Despite their prestigious titles and political positions, the book fails to reflect anything but love, friendship, and wisdom, rather than any superiority or tunnelled opinions. On the days when the glass seems rather empty, The Book Of Joy really does offer some salvation and perspective in an often challenging world, acting as a welcome reminder that Love can really conquer all.