Supporting Community Thro​ugh Reading

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​​​​​​​​​The Book of Joy 

by HH Dali Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu

with Douglas Abrams                             

Co-author Douglas Abrams summarizes a rich and delightful week-long conversation between His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu, who came together in April 2015 in Dharamsala, India, to celebrate the 80th birthday of His Holiness.  In the midst of laughter and tears, the two spiritual leaders grapple with the enduring question:  How do we find joy in the face of life’s inevitable suffering?

Despite their years of hardship--decades of exile (for the Dalai Lama, from his homeland of Tibet) or violence and racism (as Tutu experienced in South Africa), these two Nobel Laureates nonetheless lead lives of exceeding joy.   In The Book of Joy, the two men emphasize a shift in perspective—from oneself and toward others, from anguish to compassion, from counting your burdens to counting your blessings.  They also share the daily Joy Practices that anchor their own spiritual and emotional lives.

It is the authors' hope that their time together, and this book, will create a lasting gift for others.  In selecting this book, the VYCR hopes to inspire conversations we might otherwise not have. Please join us this year in reading The Book of Joy.

Click HERE for an interesting review of The Book of JOY.




​Tibetan Monks from Gaden Shartse Sacred Arts

The Virginia Read was excited to host visiting monks from Gaden Shartse Monastic University while they were on their 2017-18 tour in the West.  The monks brought aspects of this year's VYCR selection to life as they shared the Tibetan Perspective of the Buddha's teachings through ceremony, presentation and Q&A sessions. All events were held at the Colusa County Library, 738 Market Street, Colusa. 

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

​7:00 pm,  Slide Show Presentation/Discussion: A Monk's Life 

The visiting Tibetan Monks shared slides and video that taught us about their way of life at the Gaden Shartse Monastery in South India. Question & Answer session followed.

Wednesday, March 27, 2018
​3:00 pm, Family Activity: Sand Mandala Painting and Calligraphy 

Children of all ages created miniature sand mandalas and practiced the art of Tibetan calligraphy with the visiting Monks at the Colusa County Library.  

7:00 pm, Presentation: World Peace and Unity of all Religions
The Colusa County Library hosted a special evening with the monks from Gaden Shartse. They presented an intellectual and philosophic discussion on the quest for world peace and the unity of all religions. A Question & Answer session followed.


Friends of the Library Book Club Meeting

Thursday, April 5, 2018 

6:30 pm, Morse Conference Room, Colusa County Library

The Friends of the Library Book Club read The Book of Joy and discussed the book at their April meeting. This book club is open to the public, and everyone is welcome. 

Virginia Read Day

Saturday, April 28, 2018 

9:00-11:15 am, Sankey-Elmwood Park, 4th and Webster Streets

Yoga and Meditation Morning

Yoga Alliance teacher Wendi McCaskill and Lindsay Miguel from Urban Soul Yoga visited Colusa to lead us in a special yoga and meditation exercises. Two different classes were given:

  • 9:00-9:30 Mindful Movement  This class was for families! Children and parents participated in active story time, partner yoga poses and imaginative play. Teacher Wendi McCaskill is a trained and certified Baptiste Yoga teacher. She teaches yoga and meditation in Davis, and she works throughout Northern California as a mediation coach and consultant. 
  • 10:00-11:15 Yoga/Meditation    This class was geared for all levels, and was the perfect opportunity to explore how a yoga and meditation practice may bring joy to our lives.  Teacher Lindsay Miguel is the owner and lead instructor at Urban Soul Yoga in Woodland. Her studio specializes in Vinyasa, Acrovinyasa, Yin Yoga, and Stretch Yoga. 

2:00-3:30 pm, Colusa County Library, 738 Market Street

Panel Discussion

What are the common denominators across religions regarding the true nature of joy?  How do other cultures view the right to pursue happiness?

Many community members joined us at the library on Virginia Read Day as we posed these and other questions to Chico State University professors from the Comparative Religion Department,  Kate McCarthy,  Micki Lennon, and Joel Zimbelman


Thanks to generous donations from our community, Virginia Read events are free of charge.  


“There are going to be frustrations in life. The question is not: How do I escape?

It is: How can I use this as something positive?” 

​“Suffering is inevitable...but how we respond to that suffering is our choice. Not even oppression or occupation can take away this freedom to choose our response. Right” 

Dalai Lama XIV, The Book of Joy