Who Are You, and What Are You?

What Is Your Real Purpose in Life?

What Is Happiness and Why Do I Want It?

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Happiness is something we all want. The desire for happiness is hard wired into the human nervous system. We all want it. But it seems to come in different forms for different people. What is it exactly?
On many occasions, I’ve noticed that I was especially “happy” and, some of those times, I’ve taken the time to go inside myself to see what was going on to create the condition. Here are some samples from just within the last month:

One: Lying on the beach in the warm sunshine, listening to waves lap on the shore. Two: Putting my book down and listening to a soft symphony playing in the background. Three: Pausing whatever I’m doing to notice my breath and heartbeat. Four: Cruising my bicycle through a path in the woods. And five: The most common instance was sitting on my meditation cushion with my mind stilled.

From forty years ago, I remember a few periods of sublime happiness after using marijuana. Another noticeable occasion (only once) was after taking a powerful pain killer following surgery. While the chemical approach to happiness is bad for many reasons, I want to be honest about the times I remember when it happened for me.

Looking back, what is the most common thread of all these experiences? I’ve tried drilling down inside myself many times to answer that question And the answer I found was simple: My mind was stilled. Bingo.

Slowing the body and mind down, and then stopping my mind from thinking produced a condition that I identify as happiness. Some people will laugh at me and say, “Well, of course, you dummy! Everybody knows that.” Other people won’t get it at all and won’t agree with me, because they have other reasons and conditions they associate with happiness.

Thus, my answer may not be for everybody. But it might work for you. From my experience, getting into the pure meditative state (however you may choose to do it) is the most common means of creating “happiness.”

Written by Eduardo Mitchell

March 11, 2014 at 10:11 am

One Response

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  1. Tranquility and happiness are often synonymous with each other, particularly as you have described your current and past experiences. For me, happiness resolves from other things like the completion of a task, the warmth of a smile from a friend, the security of a paid financial obligation, the comfort my bed after a tiring day, the sound of birds singing, the fragrance of spring flowers, the aroma of pie baking, the exhilaration that comes from romance and exercise, and so many other pleasantries I could never list them all. But in the perspective you have taken, the quiet mind, certainly happiness is achieved there and there is a safe, comfortable place to be, routinely, occasionally, and most certainly a place we should go to achieve inner peace. Chemically, the volume of dopamine in the brain will determine how happy we feel in all circumstances, I think, maybe; oh hell what do I know! In every case I enjoy reading your blog because it makes me happy.

    Arnette Crocker Tressel

    March 12, 2014 at 4:22 pm


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