The Book of Joy review

Vitaliy Mokosiy
3 min readFeb 23, 2022

I have finished reading the book in deep gratitude. The thoughts of Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu turned into one of the most life-changing things personally for me. I also think, considering the current anxiety level caused by the pandemic and politicians, the book is never better to come in handy and help transform your negative emotions.

Here are my top 10 takeaways from the book.

1. Inner radiance

Inner radiance (shining) — calm joy arising from a sense of deep well-being and benevolence towards the world.

It’s one of the best spiritual and emotional states I’ve ever had.

2. We are creators of our negative experience

We build ourselves many of the obstacles that prevent us from rejoicing. The causes are:

  • tendency to negativism
  • impulsiveness
  • inability to see and use our internal resources

We cannot avoid natural disasters, but we can make sure that other problems do not affect us. We are the creators of our own bad experience and, logically, we can be the creators of our own happiness.

3. Why be sad…

  • Why be sad if nothing can be corrected?
  • And why be sad if everything can still be improved?

4. Happy Brain theory

Richard Davidson, an American neurobiologist, formulated the Happy Brain theory in his book. The brain states mainly depends on 4 abilities, which you can develop:

A. Ability to be positive, optimistic
Stay in a positive spirit to continue to seek a solution to any given problem. Recognizing that any situation has many different aspects — positive as well as problematic.

B. Your resilience after negative emotions
How quickly you recover after something unpleasant or even dramatic happens with you.

C. Focus
Ability to concentrate on something + get into so-called state of flow.

D. Generosity
When you give, you emotionally receive much more in the long term. This is the way to buy happiness!

5. Psychological immunity

Psychological immunity is the ability to prevent the emergence of destructive emotions and cultivate positive ones.

It’s pretty much like physical immunity and viruses. If a person has good mental health, then in difficult times he experiences little anxiety.

Be like an ocean. You can have many small waves on the surface, but under them, there is a calm depth.

6. Chronic stress ages you dramatically and causes diseases

Elizabeth Blackburn and two others, who received the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 2009, found that stress wears out telomeres, the ends of DNA that protect cells from disease and aging. The way we think also affects the telomeres.

7. Eight pillars of joy

Mental pillars:

  • Looking from the outside — the ability to see the good in every situation
  • Humility
  • Sense of humor
  • Acceptance

Spiritual pillars:

  • Ability to forgive
  • Gratitude
  • Compassion
  • Generosity

8. Don’t overfocus on yourself

I, I, I… Too much focusing on “I” feeds your Ego growth. And that causes discontent, anxiety, fear and even aggression. A self-fixated person will not be happy.

9. Humor is trust

Healthy humor is about trust. It invites you:

Stand next to me and let’s laugh first at me, and then at you.

10. Forgive your enemies

Without forgiveness, we remain in prison, where our offender is the jailer. He holds the keys to our happiness. We are tightly bound by the chains of resentment. Forgiveness gives us back control over our destiny and emotions. We free ourselves.

I hope I made you curious enough to get into the Book of Joy :)


You made it to this line! As a reward for you, here’s the new 3-minute video with Dalai Lama. He is so fun! :)

May the joy be with you!

Vitaliy Mokosiy



Vitaliy Mokosiy

CTO in Atola Technology. Gamification enthusiast. Agile proponent