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Thursday, November 7, 2013

Think About It

Happiness

“I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little.”
(Philippians 4:12)

Happiness is something that is learned and as such, must be caught. It is not guaranteed nor is it a right in spite of what some people think. It can be elusive while at the same time right at our fingertips. Ultimately, it is a choice.

I recently heard a person complaining about what other people were doing to them. In a moment of despair, they were crying out for relief yet was not recognizing how their own behavior and choices were a contributing factor in this despair and unhappiness. Sadly, this person was viewing life as a victim and as such was relinquishing their power to others. When we have no power, we feel helpless and hopeless. We blame others for taking it away when in reality; we’ve given it to them.

Paul stated that he had “learned the secret of living in every situation”. What does this mean? How could he live in a manner that no matter what befell him, he was content? What is this secret that he refers to? Can we too have this secret and can others learn it as well?

Let me point out that it was a secret that was learned. If you were to explore the life of Paul you would find that it was not an easy life. It was full of hardships and near death experiences, and yet he was content. I’m not so sure that we want to take the time to learn. Instead we often feel more comfortable in blaming others for the dire straits that we are in. If only they would stop, our life would be much more pleasant and we could give a contented sigh of happiness. The truth be known, your unhappiness is not the result of what’s happen, but rather your view of what’s happened. What was Paul’s secret? For that you will have to learn it too. Check out his writings, it’s part of the learning. Think about it.
bjknef@yahoo

4 comments :

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed this very much. It is so true! Thank you for sharing

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing this wisdom

Anonymous said...

So very true. Hapiness is not given to you by the government. In fact entitlements slowly erode your hapiness and slf respect.

Anonymous said...

Happiness:
1. Happiness is by definition the state to which all aspire. For most, that state is one of deep and lasting pleasure.
2. Such pleasure is not to be confused with transitory pleasure, which comes and goes, while happiness, to be truly happiness, must be a state that is far more stable and certain.

3. Nor should such pleasure be confused with the avoidance of pain, for those who strive to avoid pain must also of necessity avoid happiness, which lies in the same direction as pain and is part of the same landscape.

4. Although most pursue transitory pleasures and seek to avoid pain, we know well that such behavior does not bring us happiness.

5. The deepest and most lasting pleasure is derived from the act of being, and is available to all at all times and under all circumstances.

6. Happiness therefore comes about through continuous awareness of the beauty and goodness of being. Such awareness, however, is difficult to sustain.

7. The principles of wisdom are inborn faculties that bring us to an awareness of the beauty and goodness of being and help us to sustain it.

8. To the extent that we are happy, we have the will to survive despair. Paradoxically, however, those who are most happy have the least fear of death.

Hope:
1. Since consciousness cannot imagine its own demise, we live in eternity even as we recognize that time bears us swiftly towards death.
2. This moment-to-moment sense of endless possibility is the basis for hope.

3. From time to time, of course, the fabric of hope is torn and we see the blackness beyond. But in time the rent is repaired, and we return, however shaken, to a life of purpose and meaning in which the future, whether before or after death, retains its eternal promise.

4. Hope is not faith but the breath that propels faith up through the larynx to where it may be shaped by the tongue.

5. There are many faiths--in social progress, for example, or in the power of reason or prayer or love, or in the extension of one's existence through tomorrow or beyond death--but one common source, which is hope.

6. Certainty is the end of hope, both in the sense of goal and, paradoxically, in the sense of demise. For if one were certain that all that lay between one and death were unbearable pain, and that death were an absolute end, there would be nothing to hope for, and one would no longer wish to live. Similarly, if one were certain of one's own personal salvation, one would no longer hope to be saved, any more than one who was tall would hope to be tall, or one who had three children would hope to have three children.

7. A faith, then, that retains its connection to the hope that produced it must also embrace doubt, acknowledging that it is not certain, that it is faith and not knowledge. Otherwise it will be cut off from its source of energy and become rigid and lifeless.

8. Since hope comes from a contradictory vision common to all, all cannot help but hope, though to a greater or lesser degree. In fact, if one were honest one could deny neither hope nor despair, and would have to live accordingly.

9. Faith therefore should be seen not as wishful thinking but as wishful living, something all humans do, though the content of their faith may vary.

^Borrowed from; Nicholas Gordon ^

This is mine>

We make a heaven or hell of our own existence. According to how we perceive our current situation. We all have moments of despair. So when someone says "Well at least you got this or that." Or "its not as bad as so and so has it." Its not to belittle you. Or to make lite of your problems. It is to attempt to change your perception for a moment. In the hope that a change in perspective will instill hope again in you. It is not wrong to lose hope. It is however wrong not to search for it. Same goes for happiness we may not be "entitled" to it. But we are entitled to pursue it. Life, Liberty, and The Pursuit of Happiness........