Developing Yourself:

Happiness

Buddhism about Happiness

Happiness Is a State of Mind

Vadim Kotelnikov personal logo Vadim Kotelnikov

Founder, Ten3 Business e-Coach Happiness, Achievement,  Inspiration and Innovation unlimited!

Author of the Smart & Fast mini-course Happy Victor

 

 

 "There is no way to happiness. Happiness is the way." ~ Buddha

 

 

 

Buddhism about Happiness

"The first step in seeking happiness is learning. We first have to learn how negative emotions and behaviors are harmful to us and how positive emotions are helpful. We must also realize that these negative emotions are not only very bad and harmful to one personally, but are also harmful to society and the future of the whole world," teaches Dalai Lama.

Everyone wants to be happy and no one wants to suffer, but very few people understand the real causes of happiness and suffering. We tend to look for happiness outside ourselves, thinking that if we had the right house, the right car, the right job, and the right friends we would be truly happy. We spend almost all our time adjusting the external world, trying to make it conform to our wishes. All our life we have tried to surround ourselves with people and things that make us feel comfortable, secure, or stimulated, yet still we have not found pure and lasting happiness.

It is time we sought happiness from a different source. Happiness is a state of mind, so the real source of happiness must lie within the mind, not in external conditions. If our mind is pure and peaceful we shall be happy, regardless of our external circumstances, but if it is impure and unpeaceful we can never be truly happy, no matter how hard we try to change our external conditions. We could change our home or our partner countless times, but until we change our restless, discontented mind we shall never find true happiness.

 

 Case in Point  The Dalai Lama's Approach

"There are two kinds of happiness - the temporary pleasure derived primarily from material comfort alone and another more enduring comfort that results from the thorough transformation and development of the mind. We can see in our own lives that the latter form of happiness is superior because when our mental state is calm and happy, we can easily put up with minor pains and physical discomforts. On the other hand, when our mind is restless and upset, the most comfortable physical facilities do not make us happy/"

Dalai Lama believes that happiness can be achieved through compassion and training the mind.

From his perspective there is an inextricable link between one's own personal happiness and kindness and caring and compassion towards others. It's not only from the Dalai Lama's perspective from his particular view of life and Buddhist philosophy but also from the scientific standpoint that shows that happy people are much more likely to show compassion.

What's remarkable is this amazing link between happiness and kindness towards others. Happier people are more likely to help the other person. But the Dalai Lama feels that it works the other way around as well. That the deliberate cultivation of kindness and compassion and caring and tolerance and forgiveness and these type of things will make one a happier person.

Dalai Lama's approach to achieving happiness begins with distinguishing between spirituality and religion. To have a spiritual dimension in your life, you should appreciate your potential as a human being and recognize the importance of inner transformation through a process of mental development.

The art of happiness has many components. It begins with developing an understanding of what are the truest sources of happiness and setting your priorities in life based on the cultivation of those sources. "It involves an inner discipline, a gradual process of rooting out destructive mental states and replacing them with positive, constructive states of mind, such as kindness, tolerance, and forgiveness."1 Balance is a key element of a happy life. 

   

 

 

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References:

  1. The Art of Happiness, HH the 14th Dalai Lama of Tibet and Howard C. Cutler