Life and Happiness
We read a lot about Life daily in Social media messages. These include thoughts and quotes from Celebrates, Great Thinkers, and Verses from religious books. Shakespeare defined Life as a theatre stage and human beings as characters in the play. According to him, the script of the play is already written by God. Some say Life is a blank canvas and every human on the earth paints its own Life on it. Some consider it as a continuous race.
Similarly, Happiness is defined differently. But most associate happiness with wealth. It is evident from most of the New Year’s wishes, in which we always wish prosperity. But most religious and philosophical books associate it with inner satisfaction.
This is all so confusing that we end up selecting a mentor and accept his/her thoughts.
What is Happiness
Let us relook into these definitions, as this world is very dynamic. There is no Universal Truth, nor is there any Constant in this world.
Let us consider the primitive human. Life for the primitive human was eating, protecting self from predators, reproduction, and ultimately death. That means life for the primitive human was merely survival. Happiness could be at the most finding a safe place to live and to find a source of abundant food.
So initially Happiness was found in satisfying Basic Needs.
Next, humans formed tribes to protect themselves and to find food. Initially, food was sourced by hunting. Hunting in groups made it easier. Later they sourced places on the river banks where natural food was abundant. The human then learned to farm and getting food in large quantities. The human tribes then settled at such places. Their search for food and shelter was over. Then human search for Happiness changed as basic needs were satisfied. They then started looking for enjoyment. This was the start of festivals. People started celebrations after hard work in form of Festivals. The festivals were celebrated after yielding the crops, change of season, etc. As life became easy, more and more occasions for celebrations were found.
In short, Happiness was found in Achievements.
As we progressed, Happiness was found in many different areas. In childhood, we find Happiness in appreciation and love. As we grow, we search for Happiness in Achievements and Success. Achievement and Success bring in Appreciation. Apart from these, being loved always makes us happy.
So finally it boils down to the source of Happiness as “Finding Love and getting appreciation”. Success, Achievement contributes to Happiness. But it is not necessary that every successful person or achiever gets true Love and Appreciation.
Let us see some real-life examples.
All of us have learned the Eureka story of great scientist Archimedes from Greece. For those who do not know or those who have forgotten the true-life story, let me refresh your memory.
A king of Greece asked a Goldsmith artist to prepare a crown of Gold. He provided pure Gold to the Goldsmith. After a few weeks, the Goldsmith came with the crown and submitted it to the King. It was a masterpiece. The King liked it very much. But somehow he became suspicious that the Goldsmith has mixed some inferior metal in it and kept some pure Gold with him.
He asked his scientists to check and see whether his doubt is true are not. They all told him that a piece of gold will have to be broken from the crown for testing. But the King liked the crown so much that he did not want the crown to be damaged. He then gave the task to Archimedes. Archimedes started thinking about a solution and was engrossed in the thought all the time.
One day he went to take a bath. The bathtub was full of water up to the brim. He lowered his body in the tub. Water overflowed from the bathtub. And suddenly an idea flashed in his mind. He had discovered a principle of Physics which was going to solve the problem of testing the purity of the Gold crown without damaging it. He was so happy that he ran out shouting “Eureka, Eureka” meaning “I found it”. He did not even remember that he was fully naked.
Where did this extreme Happiness come from? There was no Appreciation, which was yet to come, there was no love. It was only a discovery that spurged a wave of Happiness. This happiness came from his inner self.
Mother delivering a baby
Take an example of a mother giving birth to a child. She goes through excruciating pain during labor. But when she delivers the baby and sees it, the Happiness she feels is just incomparable. What is this Happiness for? Is it because she has delivered the world’s most beautiful and sweet baby? Only the Mother will know. Probably she would also not know.
These examples prove that true Happiness comes from our inner self. Happiness does exist locked in our inner self. It comes out in patches like the fragrance of a flower. It gets unlocked with some incidence, occasion or happening. It gets obscured by our worries, tensions, responsibilities, and environment. It comes out when these clouds melt.
Search for Happiness is a futile exercise. It exists inside us, we need to unlock it by getting rid of negative thoughts and being positive. Happiness nourishes our Life, like fertilizer to the crop. Happiness brings wonderful changes to our life. Do you feel confused? Wait for my next blog.
I shall like to have your comments, which will help in elaborating better.