|Let's go romp in the woods!|
When people ask what I want to do with my life, I often say that I have a goal of long-term happiness. Then without fail, unless the other person has explored some eastern concepts (like Buddhism or yoga), I will be informed that this is a silly goal because happiness is dull. And furthermore, that happiness cannot exist without sadness, by which to compare it and recognize that it is happiness.
Let's clear some stuff up!
Where is the bore?
What is boringness, dullness? This is when we aren't stimulated enough by what's already before us, so we want something else instead. It means we aren't satisfied with what's there. To me, it seems clear that this is the very definition of unhappiness, this dissatisfaction.
Therefore, to be happy, long-term happy, we would be in a non-boring situation. Otherwise we wouldn't be happy with what we have.
Hahaha, but this is the silly way of explaining things. It is logical and it is true, but really, it's too clinical.
Happiness is AWESOME! It's being exuberant and mellow, alert and calm, vibrant and at peace. AND IT IS FUN! Happy people enjoy life more than miserable people: fact!
Dang, when I get really happy, nearly anything will entertain me, music makes me want to dance, the sky looks beautiful -- and I mean beautiful -- no matter what the weather or time of day, and no occurence large or small will get me down.
Not boring at all!
It's a feeling where adventures are possible -- and in fact everything becomes an adventure, even going to the grocery store! Even getting a glass of water. Even just sitting there and breathing.
Prerequisite of misery?
Do I need to have suffered in order to appreciate this? Good heavens I sure hope not! Two points:
1. Happiness is not a state of mind in which one is really comparing. It's a state of here-and-now. When you're happy, you're not moping over your past misfortunes -- that would be called "moping". Doesn't sound like a good time!
2. We've all suffered to some extent, though, haven't we? And we all also experience happiness, so I guess if there is a prerequisite then we've all already fulfilled it. So, who cares. Kids can be perfectly happy drawing treasure maps and then hiding treasures under the chair and then finding them again by using the map! Hooray! Do they need to have gone through trauma in order to enjoy these little adventures? I may be wrong, but I don't really think so. I'm not sure what makes adults so different, beyond being older.
I'm not 100% certain on this point, only 99% certain. But something about the assumption of a need for prior suffering sure troubles me.
Having suffered, I guess I've crossed whatever low bar there was and I don't care anymore. We've all crossed it, we've all crossed over, we're all in the door now. We are HERE. This is where happiness lives, and we are all present.
Let's relax into this joyful, quirky, strange, laughable, surprising life we have, and feel happy with the chance to experience it!