5 Thought-Provoking Teachings from the Dalai Lama
Society teaches us that happiness is something difficult to obtain and that when we manage to feel it, it is for too limited a time. Due to the way we understand life and our happiness, we act apathetic, waiting for it to arrive on its own because we believe that we cannot go get it ourselves.
“Remember that sometimes not getting what you want is a wonderful stroke of luck.”
One of the most complicated parts of this teaching on “how to be happy” is that they don’t teach us to recognize happiness and value it as such, thereby starting and continuing a loop that will always lead to us becoming frustrated, without touching on our inner, existential fulfillment.
Thanks to positive psychology and ancient philosophies like Buddhism, we can think of happiness as being nearby, very possible in our lives, that necessary sensation in the lives of human beings.
Today we will examine the words of a person who is a role model on the path to true happiness: the Dalai Lama.
The fundamental purpose of our life is to seek and obtain happiness.
You will agree that people often consider it more important to increase their material wealth than their spiritual depth. It seems that the first is urgent and the other has to do with bits of free time that can be put off and, in the end, done without in most cases.
If we base our lives on this way of perceiving and understanding the world, it is easy for us to only want to “amass” riches, seeking material security that is never going to be real security. We can always imagine another hypothetical situation where we could need more money.
Even so, reading this quote opens our minds, making it possible to understand our existence and goals in a completely different way from our current one, or the one “they have told us to have” until now.
If you want happiness for yourself and those around you, practice compassion.
One of the most complicated rules to apply in a person’s life is compassion. Being a compassionate person means doing everything in your power to take away others’ suffering and, by extension, your own.
Compassion is made up of understanding, acceptance, and change. If we develop a compassionate attitude toward others and ourselves, we can obtain happiness.
When we suffer something tragic, we can follow two paths: losing hope and practicing self-destructive habits or using the challenge to find inner strength.
We often find ourselves with people who have a tendency to feel sorry for themselves because their life is filled with failure, constant regret, or a lack of opportunities As such, they don’t notice that they are continuously tying themselves to their past, using it as an excuse to stop and not move forward in their present and future. Obviously everyone has had a different life experience from everyone else, but if we get stuck in the past and spend our days thinking about what we did or could have done, we are no longer aware of the here and now.
This here and now is absolutely necessary to keep improving ourselves in every aspect, to keep growing and therefore to achieve happiness.
If your mind is calm and balanced, your ability to enjoy a happy life will be greater.
When we can be the master of our mind, we can be happy. Why? All of the thoughts and fears that hold us back perform actions that let us “touch” and experience happiness originate in our mind. If we can keep our mind calm, we can invest our energy, without restraints, to find the best solution and know how to handle our own internal conflicts and overcome them in a safe and levelheaded way.
If we live with a mind that we can’t or don’t know how to control, we will go on causing problems and building obstacles that don’t exist and that make it more difficult to achieve happiness.
Most of our problems stem from our attachment to things that we wrongly believe to be permanent.
Detachment is one of the most basic and important principles of Buddhism. Of course, much of our suffering comes from the attachment that we have to certain material things, situations, or people. We believe that we will suffer and not feel right if we lose these things. Within Buddhism, detachment means not feeling this necessity created by an emotional connection, being aware that our happiness does not depend on the affection of other people or the number of things that we have in our possession.
Going with the flow is one of the most fulfilling tools that you can start practicing if at some time you feel it becoming difficult “to let go” of certain situations.