“I have found both freedom and safety in my madness; the freedom of loneliness and the safety from being understood, for those who understand us enslave something in us.”
― Khalil Gibran
What does it mean to be happy? Is it by finally having “it all” – the career, the money, the house, the car, the husband/wife, the child, the friends? We go by our lives always seeking, searching and ticking off that list forming societal rules and acceptance, yet we are never satisfied.
Most of us haven’t truly ticked off any of those societal “norms” of acceptance and perceived happiness. This world is filled with competition, comparisons and continuous search for social acceptance, especially in the age of the Internet, where we can peak into each other’s lives and observe. It is of course understandable how we constantly doubt ourselves, our standing and purpose in life.
We forgot to appreciate what we have already and succumb to the baseless desires that are fuelled by the propaganda of celebrity culture and advertising.
“Much of your pain is self-chosen” – Khalil Gibran
Therefore, is happiness contentment and peace of mind, appreciation for the blessings the universe has given us? To be happy and at peace is a choice we have to make each day.
No matter our standing in life and what it throws at us, we should stop and contemplate our strengths and beauty and the beauty that surrounds us amidst the chaos. Standing in the middle of tranquil, green park, full of beautiful roses. Hearing your loved ones laugh, seeing them smile. Delving into an interesting mind-opening book. Swimming in quite blue ocean, or diving beneath it and observing the colorful civilizations. That’s knowledge, that’s happiness.
We can be truly happy and at peace when we seize to be too attached to the material world and its desires, be it public image, status, career, money, belongings, physical pleasure or even people. The severity of our unhappiness and pain is in direct proportion to the degree of attachment we have to worldly concepts and objects. But by having life experiences, giving back to the world, and broadening the mind and heart within us, we retain something long-lasting and priceless.
The material world is temporary illusion. We forget that this world is not our final abode, we have an ultimate destination we should strive for – our Lord our Creator. By being detached from worldly desire we can ultimately live in it at peace with ourselves.
“My soul is from elsewhere, I’m sure of that, and I intend to end up there.”