December 18, 2010

My pursuit of happiness

"There's a seed of god in all of us." said my dad, who is a devoted Buddhist. I do whole-heartedly agree on this.

I am not trying to promote atheism or anything. It's just that I can't really grasp the idea that our existence lies in God's hand.. that He determines everything, included our happiness. I don't know if there's heaven and hell after life.. Not that I care either.. What I believe is that heaven and hell are here on earth.. We just have to look into our heart to find them.

This always comes together with "Happiness comes from within."
I think our goal in looking for God, going to church etc is to experience that particular sense of peace. Now I'm wondering, why do we have to turn to external factors? Why can't peace come from within ourselves? Why do we always put our happiness in other people's hands?

The key of happiness (my own version).
- Stop making such a big fuss about everything
- Forgiving and forgetting
- Emotional detachment

It's all about our mindset, our point of view.
From what I saw, people are such drama kings sometimes.. And sadly, I have to admit, I'm one of them. How many times did we say,"Why is life so unfair?", "Why ME?", etc etc.
Maybe it's time for us to wake up and open our eyes.. seeing that it's not such a big deal and let's not make a fuss of it. The longer we dwell and focus on our problems, the more miserable we'll feel. It's natural to feel sad or disappointed, but what matters most is how long it takes to pull ourselves on our feet again.. How strong we are to bounce back up.

I was disappointed recently, and I said to myself,"It was an honest mistake, and it's not such a big deal either." Guess what, it worked! I forgave and forgot. I'm at peace with myself, and I think that's what matters.. How we create our own happiness and peace of mind, regardless of what people did or how badly they treated us. The more we think about what they did that harmed us or holding grudge against them, the more we torment ourselves. Why can't we free ourselves from that chain that's bearing us down?

Speaking of holding grudge, the german adjective for this is NACHTRAGEND. Nach means after. Tragen(d) means carry. How interesting if you think of it... Someone hurt us, and WE are the one who's carrying the burden after (or behind) them.. How stupid can we be? :)

Emotional detachment: hard as hell!
To be completely honest, I don't get along with my mom. She's such a moody person and if the bad mood strikes, she says things which hurt a lot and somehow I always take it personally..
After our last big fight, my dad said,"It upsets you because you took it to heart. Try to detach and don't let those words affect you."
I was like,"How??"

After some thinking, I can see that he's right.. If we take twisted criticism or harsh words with a grain of salt, then maybe it won't affect our soul balance. I'm still trying hard to get there, and I would have to say I haven't succeeded yet.

Another example..
A friend had a disagreement with a pastor last week. Unfortunately I do have to agree that this pastor is very close-minded, judgmental and arrogant. He invited my friend for a dialogue, but in the end, it turned out to be an indoctrination from his side, instead of a two-way dialogue. He didn't even listen to what my friend said or asked and keep bombarding my friend with his own opinions and theories. Long story short, my friend was very upset and irritated for days. Every time he thought about the 'incident', he kinda exploded and got mood swings. For me, as a spectator, this is very interesting... I mean, why can't he just take everything the pastor said with a grain of salt, shrug his shoulders and let it off his mind.. If I were he, I would probably just simply think,"The pastor is impossible. But it's his lost to be so close minded. None of my business anyway." In this case, he can't detach his emotion and he kinda let this stranger get the best of him. FYI, they are not even close acquintance.

But everything is better said than done.. I think he and I just need more patience and practice in detaching and keeping emotional distance. We are afterall just human beings in our own pursuit of happiness, aren't we?

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