Capturing Elusive Happiness
One of the timeless questions is, what about happiness? We all want happiness.
In my investigation of this question, I came to a realization that was really quite confronting at first. I saw how prevalent it was in myself, and so perhaps it is the same with you.
There’s some aspect within us that knows exactly what we need to do to be happy today. Really, the reason we’re not happy is because we’re avoiding happiness.
We’re avoiding it.
My spiritual teacher said to me once, “You want to be happy? Do the things that make you happy.”
So, what are the things that make you happy?
Is it golfing? Spending time with your kids? Working out? Going on adventure tours, traveling, going for walks in the park? What is it?
Making love, creating things, making art?
Do more of it.
That’s it: do more of what makes you happy. Keep going down the happiness tunnel, with all your heart, with all your being, without resisting it, without having to be guilty.
The happiness tunnel is already in front of us. It’s already there.
Why can’t we follow what makes us truly happy right now – not later?
Now, ask yourself fiercely, why are you not going down the happiness tunnel?
What are your “Yeah, but’s”… “If/and…’s?” Could it be this feeling of “Maybe later, when I have enough money,” “When I finish this task,” “When I’ve completed that?”
What are your excuses? Go ahead and list them off. I know I’ve got mine. I have many excuses that come up throughout the day. I have many reasons not to be happy. Yet, I choose to walk the path of happiness.
To do this, we have to stop avoiding our happiness, and to stop doing the things that bring us misery, stop spending time on things that bring us tension.
Why are we wasting our energy? Why don’t we just invest in the time that we have, in this precious life, to enjoy ourselves, being happy?
Let go of spending time on things and people who are bothering and sucking your energy out of you.
Now, if you embark on this journey wholeheartedly, and you tackle setting aside the things that make you unhappy, and you go down that tunnel, maybe even a little bit more every day, you will become more and more comfortable with what it feels like to embody happiness as a way of life.
There’s nothing in the world that’s going to get you happy, you know that already. There’s a thousand books about this; a million gurus have been saying it forever. You don’t search for happiness, you transmit happiness. You create happiness.
What makes you happy today – invest in that. It’s the highest investment you can make.
Yes, it seems selfish. It might appear to be for a few days, but if you keep going down that tunnel with relentless commitment, it’ll start blooming like a beautiful flower and infusing your life with its fragrance, becoming the starting point for everything else you do.
Now, this journey is one that continually deepens. Today, you might ask yourself what would make you happy, and it would be, “I want to eat ice cream – that’d make me happy.”
Okay, eat ice cream. You’ll do that, you’ll fulfill yourself with ice cream, you’ll feel happy, and then you’ll notice there’ll be a hollowness that comes again.
You’ll recognize, there’s a deeper happiness I want, and it wasn’t that ice cream. But you wouldn’t have known it unless you took that ice cream route. This is a good sign.
The key is, you need to be open to what’s at the end of the ice cream route. You need to be willing to ask yourself, what would make you happy that’s even more replenishing to your body, mind, your spirit, your being, your family, your connection to life?
Feel for that with laser-like precision.
Keep going down the tunnel.
As you do that, you’ll discover there’s something else you’re avoiding.
“I’ve been wanting to read that book, I’ve been wanting to attend to that garden, I’ve been wanting to meet this teacher, I’ve been wanting to…” Go down that route, fully, without recourse, without swerving, with full dedication. And when you do that, and you come to the end of that route, and you feel fulfilled, you will meet yet again the next level of your avoidance of happiness.
And if you venture down this path, you’ll eventually come to a deeper recognition.
Ultimately, there’s nothing that keeps us in a sustained state of happiness. You can feel for this truth, and recognize it based on the mass consumption of ideas, thoughts, feelings, food, sex, wine, booze, drugs, entertainment, stimulation, etc.
You can go down the dark route, and try to spend more money on bullshit, and spend money on perhaps harming yourself in some way, because you’re thinking, “Let’s do something that will stimulate me to find the next energy, the next high, the next simulation of happiness.”
But that’s not the depth of happiness, it’s not real happiness, you know it, we know it.
We all know what real happiness is. We’ve all touched on it.
It comes when we evolve, it comes when we start contacting others.
True happiness starts to magnify and deepen when we open ourselves up vulnerably, softening the front surface of our body, and make conscious contact with other beings.
You, you’re a conscious being; myself, I’m a conscious being. Try it with the next person you meet. Feel and know in your being, I’m putting my attention on you as a conscious being with choice.
Can you do this with everyone in your life, throughout the day?
When you start to practice true contact like this, a beautiful, poetic happiness will arise in your soul. It’s a happiness that transcends fluctuation. It’s a sublime happiness, a bliss.
The Yogis call it Sat-Chit-Ananda: the realization of truth, the relaxation of mind, the holding of tranquility and contentment and fullness. It is the recognition, “I am right now already full and absolutely empty.”
This is transcendent happiness, and it’s already beyond all the trappings of the world that could ever take you away from it. In fact, it’s the seed of your soul. Enjoy yourself and true happiness.