The Joy of Being
Seek joy! Seek joy until you cause joy! Cause joy until you know you are joy. –C. Teevens
When I urge people to seek joy, usual mind may think that means vacations on sandy beaches, a shiny new car, ecstasy with a lover, or a rich bank account. That is the usual way people try to make themselves happy. The blatant reality is that all of them come and go. All of them are impermanent and unreliable. Because we have needed them, we believe in free will so we can try to make them happen. And it may be that you do get them. Once, twice, or even more. Yet still, they do not stay. And as they say “you can’t take it with you.”
Not only don’t they stay, but they are not the cause of feeling good. There is no happiness in two tons of metal on wheels. The paper in money just lays there, inert. So where does it come from? Even in touch, there is no joy.
Touch one hand with the other. You know how skin and bones feel, right?
Now touch your hand with love.
What just happened? The feeling changed right? What was the difference? Two things: your intention, and your attention looked for the experience you call love. And it is there.
Who created that?
Who did you need to give it to you?
“We don’t want people, things, or events. We want the feeling we mistake them for.” –C. Teevens
You could lay beside someone and generate a feeling of love. You could lay beside the same person and feel disconnected. Even as you lay beside another, YOU are what makes the difference. Otherwise, you would always feel the same laying beside them.
This is the confusion of people, things, or events for the feeling we mistake them for. When we mistake these for feelings, we begin to think we need them in order to feel good. Or we need them to be a certain way or to say a certain thing in order for us to feel good. This is attachment.
This confusion is wanting, and this wanting CREATES a feeling of incompleteness, of loss, of agitation, and stress–of bad feeling, where there was none originally. Of course, it is not true that you are incomplete, however regardless of what is true or not, a feeling of being incomplete can be created and experienced. That is how powerful you are. Feeling is not truth, and bad feeling can blind you to truth.
You can know in your own experience that when you stop hitting your thumb with a hammer, it will feel good. That is the first good feeling you get, from stopping “banging” yourself with want. Then, not even aware of it, you give yourself permission to feel good; you enhance the good feeling with intention and attention.
Because we thought the source of our joy is outside of us, we also think the source of our pain is outside of us. And so when we feel bad, we go looking outside for the reason, in a vain attempt to fix it. Instead of seeking reasons to feel bad, I encourage people to ask themselves what it is they want, and then to seek it, to reach for that feeling, which is always readily available to “give-back” to yourself. So instead of looking for the cause/problem, I encourage people to–Seek joy!–to look within for good feeling, no matter what is going on around you.
The joy of Being has no object of happiness. As Mooji’s teacher says, “You don’t need anything to be happy. You need some thing to be unhappy.” Happiness is what is already the case. Learn conscious control of your intention, attention, and how to tap into as full an experience of the joy of Being as you are capable of, every moment. Practice “Alchemy” and–Seek joy!