Ask most people what they want, and eventually they’ll tell you that they want to be happy.
Ask them what they want for their loved ones, eventually the answer will be the same.
Yet most things we attempt to make us happier turn out to fail.
Why is that?
Because happiness is a spiritual matter, it exists in the mind and body, it does not exist in the material world. Unfortunately, most of our attempts at happiness are material in nature.
I believe that happiness is something that is uncovered. It is the outcome of a process, rather than a goal. It is a result of training our minds to see life more clearly, in particular to acknowledge the role of fear and grasping, and to see how life is one continual process of change.
I think that my story reflects this idea.
I was a happy child upon until hormones kicked in. The teenage years were particularly difficult due to social hierarchy and the unfortunate fact that humans have a tendency to understand our own lives through comparisons with others. Low self-esteem issues developed and these struggles lasted until I was 28 years old.
At 28, I was working an IT job, which I hated. I felt like I was wasting my life doing a thankless job in which I was not appreciated in the least. I actually had interests, too many interests really, so I had retreated into a safe job with benefits and regular salary.
In May of 2005, my father unexpectedly died at the age of 65. This had a profound impact upon me. Even though you know that life can be short, and that parents die, you don’t expect it to happen to you. Parents or loved ones dying earlier than they should is something that happens to other families. Not yours.
But it did happen.
This event was the defining moment of my life, which as it turns out, is a major theme in human mythology, out of death comes new life. Well, my father’s death gave me new life.
I quit my IT job and struck out on my own.
You are unique. Your path will be unique. Your path won’t always be well illuminated. This too is typical of the human experience. The great unknown, the dark forest, the desert, the deep dark ocean, all of these are symbols that represent a path that is uncertain and scary.
It’s important to keep in mind that I didn’t quit my job to be happier. Happiness wasn’t my goal. I quit my job because I couldn’t live the way I was living.
Increased happiness was a result of learning; years of reading, studying, trying new things, opening myself up to experiences instead of running scared from them.
My happier self came about through an inner transformation. My happier self did not come through any type of material acquisition.
My happier self is a result of a more authentic experience of life.
But I Can’t Do What You Did
But what if you aren’t in a position to quit your job and pursue your dreams and passions?
Well, you have some work to do. You’ll have to take time and figure things out, how you can live a more authentic life experience within the context of your life as it is presently constructed.
My experiences aren’t unique to me. Only my path is unique to me. So the things I write about are applicable to most people, they just have to fit into the context of your life. And only you can do that, no one else.
And that is the point of this site. This is why I write. If I have the ability to live a happier life, then anyone can.
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