Life is all about love – even if we don’t want to admit it.
We desperately need the love from our caregivers in childhood and later we search love in our relationships. And all our life long we are trying to figure out how love increases and with that our happiness.
Happiness enters our life when we FEEL happy with whatever happens in or around us! – That seems to be a contradiction in itself: how can you feel happy when unfortunate things occur, when you lose your job or a loved one?
What is happiness?
Sitting – a spiritual practice which can lead to equanimity
Well, we are talking about 2 different ways happiness is understood. Often people think they will be happy when they have reached x, or possess y, or got rid of z. The experience is that this sort of happiness is a short-lived one. There is another form of happiness which is literally independent of what is happening in the outside world. It is located in our inner world, it is a way of thinking and feeling and responding to the outside world which doesn’t end up in rejection, negativity, and fight. It is an equanimity which can grow during our lifetime, with and without spiritual training.
It certainly doesn’t mean that we don’t get any more angry in situations where anger is appropriate, the same with fear, joy, and shame. But the huge difference lies in the fact that these emotions pass through us and we don’t cling to them by telling us stories about what they mean, where things can lead etc. We do the appropriate things – and then we come back to calmness. WE? – well, people who are good in that. And the good news is that everybody can learn it if they put the necessary effort and time into it.
Equanimity as a path to love and happiness
Why would you take on this journey towards equanimity? We were talking about love above: we want to experience love. We want to live in love and not only have a short glimpse of it, every now and then. When we are torn apart by all sorts of emotions which dominate us and keep occupied our lifetime we hardly have the possibility to enter into love, to take the necessary time to consider and cultivate this feeling and this attitude. Too many other things going on, no time for love. Does it ring a bell?
And here comes: The Secret Gift of Aging:
A man and his dogs emanating joy
Getting older sometimes means also getting wiser, just because we have seen so many things and survived them, too. When the children are grown and the career ended we become free of the decade-long burden of the responsibility and duty towards others. We can begin to focus on ourselves and explore our interiority. Maybe for the first time, we become aware of what is going on in our body and mind, in our emotions and thoughts. We will realize how much we were driven into certain directions in our lives and also that we have the power to do differently.
Getting older brings us the gift of relaxing into our being. And at the same time, we begin to love, love ourselves, others and the world in a much deeper and complete way than what we were able before. This is the secret about how love increases: not by wanting to love, forcing oneself to love (for instance our spouse towards whom we had felt love for some time), and not even by just waiting and expecting that love comes our way. No, love and happiness enter constantly into our lives in the same path as we enter into harmony with ourselves.
Watch this example of how love increases and happiness enters life
In our CONSCIOUS AGEING series, our guests were father and son Christopher and Durwin Foster. “The Secret Promise of Ageing”, the book written by Christopher Foster, gave the title to the live broadcast. Christopher, age 84, touched my heart when he spoke about his life and how he experiences that loves is growing the elder he gets.
Watch this intriguing conversation in replay here. You can find the info about Christopher and Durwin Foster, links to their books and other resources and the TIMESTAMPS of the conversation HERE.