The Dali Lama makes it clear from page one in his book “The Art of Happiness”, that he believes the very purpose of life is to seek happiness.
He agrees it is not that simple to be happy all the time- but we need to train our minds to be happy. I agree with this as I have proved to myself that this can be done. I do agree too that it is not a case of once you find it you stay in a happy state forever- but it certainly helps to learn what makes you happy and remind your self constantly. After reading “The Miracle Morning” , I trained myself to have a morning routine which raised my energy, my vibration and started my day off with me being my best self ( by using mediation, affirmations, visualization,exercise,reading and journalling.)
The Dali Lami explains he does not mean training the mind as in one’s cognitive ability or intellect ,but rather the spirit- intellect, feeling, heart and mind.
He says education is the most important thing because it teaches us discipline and that is what is needed to train the mind to keep coming back to its happy place.. We know what things make us happy and what causes us suffering, so why do we continue to do things that make us unhappy? Why not simply eliminate them from our lives and only do what makes us happy? Discipline is the key. For me that especially rings true with my morning routine- I love my affirmations, my reading and journalling but when it comes to exercise I really have to push myself. I know how great I feel afterwards and when my mind is making up excuses – that trained mind of mine reminds me that exercise makes me feel happy afterwards.
“..Whether we live a day, or a century, a central questions always remains: What is the purpose of our life? What makes our lives meaningful?” Howard C Cutler who co-wrote this book asks, ” But isn’t a life based on seeking personal happiness by nature self-centered, even self-indulgent? ”
Well, he explains that it has actually been proven that it is the unhappy people who are more socially withdrawn and more self-focused. Happier people are more sociable, creative, and can handle life’s frustrations easier. They are also found to be more loving and forgiving. It can also be contagious- there is proof that by watching a kind act your mood can be boosted and serotonin released as if you had done the good deed yourself. Happiness, being of service, kindness, and compassion are what the Dali Lama says are key.
“Do unto others as you would have others do unto you”- give love, give time, give money, give praise. We came into this world with nothing and we leave with nothing, so give all you can and the universe matches your vibration by giving you more back! Make connections. People and the moments with them will make you happy not objects and status- that makes your ego happy!