Once my Guru said to me, “If you are not happy as you are, where you are, you will never be happy.” The statement seemed to me something strange. If I were not happy as I am, where I am, why should I have been trying to labor hard so many years? Just for being happier! If I look upon my friends, my relatives, my neighbors and those whom I know a little bit, I feel they are happier than I am. I am lurking about the happiness, which seems to be just around the corner. Keep in mind always that there is still some hope to revive yourself. We need to locate out where is our happiness.
Many times, it happens that no sooner one target we achieve, we find that another problem or target is there requiring our immediate attention. We are again on our heels to attempt upon. We start to work again and feel that we are short of time – we are sorry on our state of affairs. What the hell is our life! We have no time for our children, our family and even for our own enjoyments! The list of our sorrows, or you say disappointments, gets lengthened.
How can I give up my sorrows? Truly, those sorrows which came into existence due to some death of a close relative, due to loss of some benefits or due to un-success in our efforts, can not be forgotten easily, can not be ignored. But we can try! How? Very easy – if someone dies, we may have to consider that the death occurred under system of the universal truth that who took life on this earth will have to go back, there is some expiry date for each one of us – some might have sooner or some may have later. If someone is ill, we can delay the expiry of that person by arranging good treatment but cannot make that person immortal. It is true that vacuum created by the death is not made up immediately, that takes time for healing up but the time teaches us to proceed on for next step in the life – we must re-adjust with the changed circumstances and care for what is still with us.
Similarly, if we suffer some loss, we can go through the circumstances why such loss happened. It is possible that we might have lagged behind somewhere or some issues might have not been attended to by us well in advance and that caused us the loss. In our next attempt, we can improve. What we can not do is gambling which we must not undertake if we have a weak heart. If we loose something in gambling or for which we have taken some risk, we should not mind as we were already determined by our psychology for face such loss.
In other words, you must choose to be happy in all the circumstances, in the worst of the circumstances. You must fill happiness in your mind – that will work as lubricant to your brain engine. When your mind is tranquil, you will be happy. When you are fighting with some trouble, you must not permit any unfamiliar thought to enter into your mind – such thoughts work as virus to derail your thinking process.
Unfortunately, most of us remain in the constant state of unrest which is in existence due to the feelings of inadequacy. Here, you need to have a look upon those things which are available with you sufficiently – you must care for your two hands when you can see that someone had lost one hand in some accident. You must care for your eyes when you see that someone has only one eye. God has given you shelter, good employment, good wife, good children – think about those who do not have such additions to their lives. If you are not satisfied with what you have, you cannot be satisfied with what you wish to achieve. Once you achieve something you wish, there would come up other things you may need further. It is endless list of your needs. You must keep some check over your needs. You may do efforts to get more and more but don’t take them to your heart.
When you signify your possessions, you will feel a little bit comfortable and that cool mind will energize you for further fighting. If you do not do it, your mind will get turbulent with the unfulfilled desires and your efforts for the further fighting may get tired. You may carelessly entertain the needs without realizing that the havoc they are playing with your peace of mind may destroy you physically too. Then, what is the use of fighting for all such things which you can not enjoy with your sound health.
Vedanta asks you to be careful about your needs. You must remain the master of your needs. Vedanta gives you a unique formula to be happy. Happiness is the number of the desires fulfilled divided by the desires harbored. If you keep the number of the needs harbored lesser, your happiness would always be closer to you. You should not be in the mindless pursuit of fulfilling desires focusing the numerator. As you fulfill one, the other will come up. The denominator increases to reduce your happiness. You may kindly keep care of denominator. Keep reviewing your needs as to how they can be reduced further.
Yes, to restore your happiness, your first step is to eradicate your needs – divide them into three classes:
1. Your Essential Needs which you can call your basic needs like your food, clothing and housing. Once you have your meals, appropriate clothes and proper housing, your next needs can be reviewed. The basic needs are those which are essential for your survival. These needs can not be ignored. If you satisfy them on priority, it would give you mental satisfaction and real happiness.
2. Your Social Needs which you can harbor to suit your status in the society. After gathering the essential food, clothes and house, a person thinks beyond. He may have better food full of nutrients, designer clothing and good bungalow. He must aspire for higher standards of life but for such things, he must care for the fact that he has already gathered the essentials for his life. If he tries after that, it is good otherwise he is definitely going to loose his life too in due course of time. In comparison to the essential needs, these needs can be overlooked for betterment of life. If you do, it may give you happiness.
3. Your luxurious Needs are always preferred when a person gets plenty of money and opportunities to display his possessions in great abundance, his rich profusion. It can be your personal choice or power-show to others. For social harmony, it should be avoided in larger interests as it creates divisions into the society. If you have plenty, you may enjoy but kindly don’t hurt those who can not afford the style you wish to display.
Meet your essential needs first, social needs at the second stage and try to avoid your luxurious needs to the maximum possible. For applying this method, you can ask yourself first: Is this need really justified? Is it going to help your goal of life? If it helps, fulfill otherwise press the ‘delete’ button.
The next step is to reduce your needs. How? I may discuss in my next post. Till then, we may try to reduce our sorrows. I would welcome if you apprise me of your thoughts on this topic.
Be Happy – Give Up Your Sorrows