There are two things to aim at in life: first, to get what you want; and after that, to enjoy it. Only the wisest of mankind achieve the second. ~Logan Pearsall Smith
The Pursuit of Happiness
One of my favorite artists Bob Marley sang one of the most meaningful phrases in music with “Don’t Worry, Be Happy”. With anyone you speak with and ask them what their goal or purpose in life is most respond by saying they just want to be happy.
Of course everyone wants to be happy, but the reality is that most people on this planet are unhappy. They stay unhappy so long that they even forget what it means to be happy, they are unhappy and simply know they would like to be happy.
Happiness now becomes such an elusive journey that all people have is the “hope” of one day being happy. So in Bob Marley’s famous words what does “don’t worry, be happy” really mean, and more importantly how can we live that phrase.
It seems that the modern man cannot be happy; they learn to simply make things more comfortable. Happiness is unnatural and unhappiness becomes the norm. Just watch, go into your local Star Bucks coffee shop, be happy, laugh, joke, have a big smile on your face. People look at you like your crazy, crazy for being happy?
Something has gone terribly wrong when being happy in public is perceived as something being wrong with you. Everyone always looks so serious. I don’t mean to sound discouraged, but if you really observe the world this is how most people are operating.
The only thing that makes us human is that we have a consciousness. We can all be happy, being a conscious being you have the ability to choose to be happy or unhappy, it’s your choice. It’s your life; it’s your responsibility to be happy.
How To Be Happy
People who reach happiness are so engrossed with whatever they are doing. They are integrated with their life and their joy. From this state of being nothing distracts you, when you do become distracted that only shows you that you are not interested in those things.
Take an objective look at the modern world, with time you have been distracted into living an unnatural life, full of preoccupations like: money, fame, and power.
Ultimately people who lead truly happy lives are people who take the leap of faith to move with the things that make them happy. Whenever you become consumed with money, fame, and power you are no longer happy with yourself. You begin to forget your life, happiness, joy, and fulfillment.
Just keep in mind that if external things become your sole focus you bargain for it with something from the inside whether you realize it or not. That’s why people who have gained the whole world, come to find that they gained nothing because in the process they lost everything, they lost their soul.
This is why it is important to always be aware of your inner motives. If you are unhappy, you need to understand why you are unhappy. This is a serious matter; your happiness is at stake. Yet many people choose to hold on to the familiar no matter how uncomfortable they might be. They have nothing to lose, but so afraid to lose it.
The reason many people have a hard time is because they have been so deeply conditioned by society. The motivations you have learned and accepted as yours are not yours if they don’t fulfill your destiny.
“We refuse to be
What you wanted us to be;
We are what we are:
That’s the way (way) it’s going to be. You don’t know!
You can’t educate I
For no equal opportunity:
(Talkin’ ’bout my freedom) Talkin’ ’bout my freedom,
People freedom (freedom) and liberty!
Yeah, we’ve been trodding on the winepress much too long:
Yes, we’ve been trodding on the winepress much too long:
Rebel, rebel!” – Bob Marley
Great teachers through the times have advised to “follow your bliss”, it sounds great, makes intellectual sense, but why don’t people follow the advice? The reason is that they don’t know what their bliss is, they have been hiding behind the identity they have been conditioned to have.
You have to drop all the inner patterns that have been forced on you. Unless you find your bliss, the element in you that activates your spontaneity, you will not be truly happy.
People meditate to be happy, but when you are happy you don’t need to meditate because being happy is being in a meditative state.
The level of your happiness depends all on your level of awareness and consciousness. Someone who is not very aware and caught up in his falsely conditioned beliefs will not know what happiness really means.
A person with a low awareness will associate being happy with superficial pleasures, pleasures that deal with your senses. They are only trying to achieve happiness through the body. These moments of pleasure are momentary, and always have the opposite feeling. You party and indulge in your physical senses only to regret it the next day.
Pleasure is a drug because it is dependent on external things and based on physical needs. Happiness is different in that it does not depend on simple physical pleasures. Happiness deals more with satisfying psychological needs, not as dependent because it does not need simple pleasures. Bliss on the other hand is free from circumstance, not dependent on anything; it is your very being.
Once you transcend simple pleasures, you will learn to be happier. Your happiness will lead you to joy because you will have a happy mind. Acting from your joy which is spiritual in nature, will lead to your very being which is pure bliss. Reaching bliss means you have discovered the innermost part of your being, the part of you where the ego can’t exist.
When you observe people who reach their dreams and who follow their bliss, you will see that many times these are the people who are artists, musicians, poets, dancers, and people whose nature is creative. They are able to create something of real beauty that we all admire because they allow their bliss to work through them unfiltered.
The ego belongs to worldly pursuits, things that are outside of us. Creating through our ego does not produce things of extraordinary lasting beauty. The ego simply creates things that are ordinary; the ego blocks your natural creative abilities. Once you acknowledge how your mind works and your negative tendencies you can learn to let go, transcend those tendencies and start a new positive pattern.
Happiness cannot be practiced it is simply that you have to allow to happen in your life. Happiness is something you cannot create, if you could everyone would create happiness.
You can allow happiness right now if you really choose to; you have to learn to quit searching for happiness. Searching for happiness which many people do all their lives is pointless because there is no need to search for something that you already have.
Understanding is the Secret to Happiness
Enlightenment is not trying to escape pain but a deep understanding of your pain. When you are able to have insight into the causes of your pain, have the clarity to see those causes you will be free from them. You are free to live a life of fulfillment.
When you understand the things that make you feel miserable, you no longer need to escape your pain with superficial entertainment. You live a life that is centered in your being. The moment you learn to face your mental anguish it will begin to disappear and you will start becoming a more joyful being.
You will come to find that much of your pain comes from society, because society teaches you to be ambitious, it nourishes you to be ambitious. The problem with ambition is that it keeps you from living in the present. You are taught that happiness is something that you achieve after you accomplish what society lays out for you.
You can’t achieve or compete for happiness, happiness is your nature. The best example is a young child; they really know how to live. They live their life mostly by feeling not thinking. Feeling is ecstasy, thinking is not. This is why many people like extreme sports, because it requires that you “live in” the present moment, no thought, just feeling intensely alive.
In your pursuit for happiness don’t let other people keep you from achieving it. You will realize that unhappy people don’t like a happy person. It hurts an unhappy person to see a happy person just being themselves.
Just remember that to be happy is to be an individual; to be unhappy is to be a part of the crowd. The crowd is unhappy because they are conformists; it is easy to be a conformist because you don’t stand out. To stand out is to call attention to yourself.
To Be Happy With Yourself You Need To Understand Your Ego:
In becoming who you really are you will need to learn to let go of false beliefs and conditioning. Letting go of things that previously defined you require you to forgive. If you are to truly let go and move on you need to really forgive yourself. If you don’t understand how your ego works you will try and forgive but it will not be real forgiveness if your ego is involved.
Your mind is very clever; your ego will try and convince you that you have forgiven. If you keep committing the same mistakes you have not really forgiven. Life is all about learning from experience, there will be struggles, embrace them, learn from them so you don’t repeat it, forgive, forget, and keep it moving.
How do you forgive and forget? You need to have a higher awareness, awareness of your ego to rise above it. Awareness to live in the present moment to stop remembering the past, and fantasizing about the future. You keep these fantasies in your mind because at a deep level they provide some form of pleasure or hope of something better.
Living like this will cause you to feel that your life is meaningless and empty. It only seems like this because your mind is conditioned to always crave more. Learn to drop your cravings and watch as you go through an amazing transformation.
People feel that if they drop their desires and cravings that life will lose its meaning. Your very wanting of your desires is the obstacle in you reaching your desires. Learn to drop your desires from your mind and you will become open to receiving them. A good example is the saying “the grass is always greener on the other side”. You only think of what you don’t have and in your mind always seems better than what you have. Then when you get it, you are not fulfilled because the mind always wants more.
If you are single learn to love and accept who you are, then only will you be able to truly love someone else and will not be using them for your ego. Learn to watch the desires that rise up within you, simply by watching them they disappear. When I am in a public place and I see an attractive woman, I observe as the desire rises up within me. Watching it and not letting it consume me, I do not become attached to the desire.
In reaching happiness you will need to learn to face boredom. How you deal with boredom will impact your growth. Learning to face boredom is learning to be with ones own being with out running away from it with simple entertainment. Many people can’t face boredom and that is why they have the TV, Video Games, Internet, anything that keeps them from experiencing their true nature. If you are happy in complete silence, you have learned to be happy with your being. True happiness with no conditions needed to feel happy.
While you are alive enjoy everything the world offers you, take life head on with out clinging to anything. Be a kid again, the world is your play ground. When it’s all said and done the only thing that will matter is how you played the game.
If you enjoyed this post please help me out by passing it along to your friends and ‘like’ our Facebook Page. Also, if you have any of your own insights please share them in the comments section.