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Happiness Resides Within May 29, 2011

Posted by nrhatch in Happiness, Humor, Mindfulness.
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Happiness is the goal behind all goals.  We all desire more happiness and less suffering. 

But, when we look for happiness in “all the wrong places,” we cause unnecessary suffering to ourselves and others. 

Reading this week’s posts reminded me that we will not find lasting happiness:

* In diamond engagement rings . . . costing a whopping $2 million!  

Spending money to buy symbols of status to impress others with our material success may buy “external approval” . . . but it’s apt to evaporate in short order. 

* In portraits with opulent jewels (diamond rings, a diamond necklace, emerald bracelets, a ruby brooch, and a gold Rolex) painted into place.   

Allowing greed and jealousy to blossom will not create lasting happiness.  We cannot add to our happiness by causing suffering in others.

* In judging and condemning others for their addictions and all-too-human frailties, rather than offering kindness and compassion.

People who say and do stupid things are worthy of our compassion.  Their stupidity is what makes them human . . . even if we can’t understand how they ended up “that way.”

* In taking life too seriously and forgetting to laugh.

We do not laugh because we are happy . . . we are happy because we laugh.

* In “righteous indignation” and anger when others don’t say or do what we want and expect them to do.

Anger is a signal.  If we remain mindful, we can choose how best to respond:  (1) observe the anger and do nothing, allowing it to dissipate; (2) share the anger with others in a constructive way; or (3) share the  anger with others in a destructive way.  Sometime we sacrifice our happiness by insisting that we are “right.”

* In failing to accept ourselves as and where we are . . . even when we are having a bad hair day.  

The goal of life is not to be better than anyone else . . . but instead to be better than our previous self.  When we accept who we are right now, we have the energy to become “the best” that we can be. 

* In forgetting to count our blessings.  Simple pleasures are life’s treasures:  getting a good night’s sleep . . . having a house to call “home”. . . our faithful companions . . . the wonders of nature . . . surviving Mother Nature’s wrath . . . life’s miracles and mysteries . . . enjoying freedom of choice.

There is no one-size-fits-all life.  No one can “have it all.”  Every choice we make precludes other choices.  

We alone must decide where our priorities lie.

Look deep. The answers lie within . . . 

As does happiness.

Quote:  It is interesting to me that people don’t see any connection between their misery and their complaints ~ their feeling of being a victim; the feeling that everyone is doing something to them. It’s amazing. How many times has this connection been pointed out in the dharma talks? How many? And yet because of our fear we won’t look.

~ Charlotte Joko Beck, Everyday Zen, Love & Work

For more inspiring quotes like this, visit The Blue Lotus Cafe

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