“How do you find joy in a world full of chaos when you are feeling alone and confused?” a woman who was attending an all day workshop at Well for the Journey asked. The program was based on The Book of Joy. If you haven’t read the narrative it’s about two wise sages with a deep reverence for one another and their friendship. Through their discourse the Dali Lama and Desmond Tutu tell of how they have turned adversity in their lives into great joy.
Both men point out by the very nature of being human, life does not always come up roses. Just like death, no one is exempt from trials and tribulations. In learning to see opportunity in life’s twists and tangles we are able to self-cultivate joy which goes much deeper than happiness. As Henri Nouwen says, “joy doesn’t just happen to us, we have to chose it every day.”
If we can adjust our perspective and our reaction to difficulty beauty abounds in every situation. Joy does not always arrive in big moments. Even in the little things there are blessings and by cultivating them we help ourselves.