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Happy Hours Round The Clock

Being able to do what you want, when you want to, must surely be the aim of civilization. I read this statement and it set me thinking.

I pondered over the word civilization and to me it meant, a community that comes together, decides a way of life and works towards its betterment and progress. I re-read the aim, being able to do what you want, when you want to.

The first thought that struck me as the unaltered aim of all civilizations was, We all want to be able to be happy. When? Of course at all times. The word ABLE? is the key in the accomplishment of this aim and marks the difference between want to be happy? and want to be able to be happy?.

 

It sounds vague when I say, ? we all want to be happy?. There has to be some visible source or way for it. Our happiness is attributed either to some activity, thing or person. Well this a myth that we have been living with. There does exist ?pure happiness? independent of all externalities. This is the ultimate goal of civilization but only a few have achieved it because the rest of us never aimed for it.

 

Coming back to our normal extrinsic happiness, the first fact to acknowledge is the non-correlation between money and happiness after a certain limit. Studies have proved it and your own personal experience will verify it. There is a diminishing marginal utility of money after a specific point. Roger Hicks, the famous photographer, aptly states it as, ?? there might not also be a quality plateau for money, above which your talent for living matters more than your income.? All said being true, the problem of our material driven world is that that the ?certain limit? of money never comes and it is never enough. Money will improve the standard of your living but it is the conscious positive conditioning of mind that will improve the standard of thoughts and consequently standard of life.

 

I want to be happy by buying the latest sedan in the market but my pocket does not allow it. Should I then be depressed? A simple question will make it clear, what is my primary want, ? happiness? or ?sedan?? The ability to be happy irrespective of pecuniary benefits is our motive. It is here that the ability to be happy has to rise above the want to be happy. A positive attitude, satisfaction and simple joyous feeling are such a grand experience in itself that we cannot subject it to the possession of a car or a piece of jewellery. It does not call for high ideals, isolated life or a genius mind to stay unruffled and calm in all situations. It is just a matter of belief and choice that cultivates your ability? Happiness? and ?material things? are mutually exclusive. For a few days just let your smiles be there, detached from all externalities. You will want to live like this forever because that makes life itself an effortless celebration.

 

The next step in honing the ability is to make it dependent on your personal externalities, which is a more practical and assured way. We are endowed with talents and skills which when acted upon lead to a joyous satisfaction. However brooding over the balance sheet and tax returns leaves little or no time for a lot of happy things. But that's the test of ability. Either you draw a line beyond which the balance sheet will not interfere in your personal space or extract effective time from the ?no time? scenario. That calls for definite courage and self-control while making us able to squeeze joys from within ourselves. And for those who say they seek happiness in making money, all I can say is that that is surely an enriching hobby with several side effects.

 

But the final step in living the aim of civilization is making yourself independent of all externalities whether personal or material. To put it simply is as follows: I want to buy a camera lens because I am a talented photographer. But I have no means to buy the expensive lens and hence cannot pursue my talent. My happiness is losing? no way. I tell myself I still have the eyes to capture the scene and store it in my memory. At the same time, the need for the lens keeps me motivated to persevere. That is ?Being able to be happy at all times.? without resigning to the fate. This ability is not a crazy far-fetched idea. It just needs constant reminder to the mind. Initially it may not seem to work but gradually you will realize happiness is a purely intrinsic emotion and complacency is not its side effect.

 

Our subconsciously conditioned mind will generate unhappy thoughts at the presence or absence of particular conditions or circumstances. But it has to be a conscious recurring decision to remain in equilibrium at all times. Our civilizations progressed but this growth became biased towards a world that gives ephemeral happiness. However the good news is that this tilt is not irreversible. Herm Albright has rather wittily remarked, ?A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort.? And this is certainly a very worldly incentive, sure to give us a boost. Make adjustments, not compromises in life. When things are wrong, don't stop from making them right. But in the transition don't forget to live the ?ABLE? life.