Let’s explore happiness. Since my last two blog entries have been written, it has come to my attention that perhaps happiness ought to be addressed. Happiness, it is elusive, isn’t it? It seems to me that happiness is this place that we want to get to. And we aren’t there right now? And when we do get “there”, we become filled with fear on how to stay?
Life needs to work out a certain way for us to be happy, it appears. Let’s say that a new piece of jewelry is something you’ve been eyeing up. You think about the new hardware, what it will look like, how much you are going to enjoy wearing it. Then, you start saving up for it. Work a little extra harder till you’ve saved up the cash. You are finally able to purchase the item, you feel so happy! But then the mind comes in to do its work… “What if it breaks?” and “This is important; I need to put it in my jewelry box for a special occasion.” For me personally, I wonder how long it will be till the kids get their hands on it…
The list of excuses to truly be able to enjoy it just gets longer and longer.
Life is the special occasion! Wear the piece of jewelry! Easier said than done?
When we make seeking happiness from external conditions our focus, we are constantly deceived. Worldly attainments are not the real essence of our precious human life. This brings me to why we must practice the Dharma. By practicing the Dharma, we cut through our deluded views and add meaning to our life.
We learn how to just wear the jewelry but at the same time not be attached to the jewelry. I use jewelry loosely here as it could pertain to anything that we are attached to. For some folks in my life, it might be a new power tool! So, the “goal” if you will isn’t happiness per say… but rather a mental equanimity. Mental equanimity could be described as peace of mind, calm, appreciation. As the Dalai Lama has said “We can never find peace in the outer world until we make peace with ourselves”.
Would you describe happy as a destination? Are you there yet? Please share with me how you bring about peace of mind in your life. I’d love to hear your thoughts…
~On Ji, Becky Kuczer