The Book of Joy

The Book of Joy is by the Dalai Lama and Arch Bishop Desmond Tutu. Yes, a Christian and a Buddhist co-authored a book.  Anyway, there is a lesson about togetherness which I think will benefit you, especially if you are dealing with anxiety.


The word used in the book is Ubuntu which describes the idea of community and togetherness. Ubuntu is often translated to mean “I am because we are”.

Growing up, I heard people say “the world is becoming a global village” a lot. Then, the internet was just becoming and I really didn’t understand the saying. Now I do and quite agree with it. But in our actual lives, we are becoming more disconnected from one another. Everybody living in the city (whether it is Lagos or New York) seems to be living singly; facing the problems of urban living on their own.

Becoming One

The idea of togetherness really is not about becoming dependent on other people, it is about acknowledging that other people exist in your immediate environment. More importantly, it is about focusing on our shared humanity. That is, how similar we are than how different we are.

You are never actually alone. whatever the situation, you can bet that there are millions of other people in the world standing in your shoes at that very moment.

There is research to back up the claim that saying we instead of I can reduce your chances of having a stroke. I mean, can you believe that? But really, since I learned about this, I have applied it to my 9-5 where I manage a team in a pharmaceutical company. The truth is that the responsibilities can sometimes be overwhelming but now I don’t say “I have all of these things to do”, I use “we” instead. And this little change is helping me cope with work better.

All Life is Synergy

Ubuntu is the understanding that in life, synergy is important. In church today, we were reminded that fulfilling God’s purpose for our lives depends on our interactions with the people in our families and communities.

Liverpool F.C’s motto is “you will never walk alone”. It’s kind of like that line from Maya Angelou”s poem, Our Grandmothers: “I come as one, but I stand as ten thousand.”

Believe this. 


-Tobi Amokeodo