Daily life can be made happier. It is a matter of choice. It our attitude that makes us feels happy or unhappy. It is true, we meet all kinds of situations during the day, and some of them may not be conductive to happiness. We can choose to keep thinking about the unhappy events, and we can choose to refuse to think about them, and instead, relish the happy moments.
All of us constantly go through various situations and circumstances, but we do not have to let them influence our reactions and feelings. If we let outer events influence our moods, we become their slaves. We lose our freedom. We let our happiness be determined by outer forces. On the other hand, we can free ourselves from outer influences. We can choose to be happy, and we can do a lot to add happiness to our lives.
Happiness is a feeling of inner peace and satisfaction. It is usually experienced when there are no worries, fears or obsessing thoughts, and this usually happens, when we do something we love to do or when we get, win, gain or achieve something that we value. It seems to be the outcome of positive events, but it actually comes from the inside, triggered by outer events.
For most people, happiness seems fleeting and temporary, because they allow external circumstances to affect it. One of the best ways to keep it, is by gaining inner peace through daily meditation. As the mind becomes more peaceful, it becomes easier to choose the happiness habit. Everyone thinks happiness is to be found in objects and experiences. Everyone thinks, “If I could only attain certain objects, if I could only possess them, if I could experience them, I will get happiness”.
Human life is a mission, a struggle for happiness. Man’s search for happiness could be traced from the primitive age when they started living in caves to shelter them from the scorching sun rays or from the incessant drops of rain. From that period till date, there has been a drastic change in human lifestyle and character; but, the eternal search for happiness has remained the same.
Happiness has its own law of growth and this law demands individual strive to earn self respect at the first. Self respect is a deeper realisation of the inner self, the better understanding of the real entity. Happiness is a human right which should not wait for social approval. We should not judge ourselves depending on the social perspective. Every individual is born with several distinctive qualities to fulfill certain objectives.
There are people, who fear that if they experience happiness, it will be soon taken away from them. They regard it as a temporary state, and are afraid to experience it, lest they lose it. In this way, they avoid the pain that might follow when it goes away. They believe that happiness is always followed by unhappiness. Others might go to the extreme of not seeking it at all, because they feel unworthy of it, and prefer to avoid it.
There are also people, who always look behind their back, wondering wherefrom will come the blow. The physical world is always in a state of flux. At each moment, a new thing is being is being created, sustained, changed, transformed and then destroyed. This is the normal state of affairs, and no one can change it. If we attach ourselves to a certain situation, we are bound to experience unhappiness sooner or later. No situation remains as it is. These are the laws of nature.
The secret of true happiness is to look for it within your own life. You will never be happy if you wait for happiness to fall in your lap. Your happiness and contentment is up to you, not someone else, the weather or your bank account. Only you can determine how will feel in any situation and that includes how happy will be in your life. So take a look around you, just exactly what do you have to be happy about?
The love of family and friends and being surrounded with joy and laughter are what makes a life great. These are things that cannot be purchased. They are products of a good life and a rich life. May be not a life in dollars, but one that is rich in experience. If you spend all your time trying to earn enough money to get the material things you want, you will be sacrificing the things that will bring you true and everlasting happiness. True happiness comes from the associations we make in this life, not the collection of things we will eventually leave behind.
This article is an ‘Ashirvachana’ given by His Holiness Late Sri Balagangadaranatha Mahaswamiji, 71st Pontiff of Sri Adichunchanagiri Mahasamstana Math