Happiness is our birth-right. Unfortunately, this birth-right is often attached to external means which makes its occurrence conditional. Happiness is an emotional or mental state of well-being defined by positive or pleasant emotions. Happiness is experienced in various stages, ranging from a sense of contentment to eternal bliss and intense joy.
“Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance, order, rhythm and harmony.”
Spirituality is a broader concept which focusses on our very existence, our purpose in life. It gives a meaning to life, a path, a goal, a destination. Spirituality leads one to self-discovery. When one steps forward on the path of self- discovery, life becomes exciting, blissful, happy, eternal, and the person becomes a conscious eternal being aligned to the universal energies and connected to the larger reality. He/she feels more connected to the cosmic energy, nature and fellow human beings. The happiness experienced at this stage is pure, unconditional and creates a state of stillness wherein, no events within the environment can create ripples to disrupt the state of happiness.
According to Buddha – “just as a candle cannot burn without fire, men cannot live without a spiritual life.” Through this quote, it is clear that spirituality is an important concept of human life. Martin Seligman asserts that happiness is not solely derived from external, momentary pleasures and that humans seem happiest when they have PERMA, an acronym for:
All religions have accepted the fact that happiness is the main theme of human life. Buddhism encourages the generation of loving, kindness and compassion, the desire for happiness, and welfare of all beings.
However, religion is structured, binding, formal and community-oriented, and it divides people based on the faith they follow and the beliefs attached to it.
Spirituality is free-flowing, individual-based, informal, limitless and experiential which leads one to introspect and unearth their true purpose in life by creating self-awareness and mindful living.
On the spiritual path, one finds true love, pure happiness and experiences divine bliss irrespective of the various situations or events one experiences in life. The real identity is created which knows no doubt, fear, shame, guilt, resentment, greed, attachment and ego. One then lives as a “child of immortality” at the spiritual level and hence, the illusions of life and death would not be a factor for one to be happy or sad.
The human body is just a vehicle that is driven by the soul which knows the route to the final destination. Any distractions on the route have to be catered to by the physical body with its mindfulness and conscious living. Every time the distractions are handled by the choices made by the body and the mind, a learning takes place for the soul which could either help it move faster towards the final destination or detour and learn to grow by another such lesson/distraction.
Mindful choices make the soul happy as it smoothens the journey chosen by the soul during this lifetime. The soul constantly guides one and this can be heard or felt when one meditates and leads a conscious and mindful life.
Self- introspection is crucial. It helps one to see the plain truth which generally falls short due to self- judgement, ego and the beliefs that we carry about ourselves and the people around us.
Life is a drama:
Our life is a drama which is based on our:
- Senses- which are imperfect, limiting and based on our perceptions.
- Illusions- which are based on our belief systems.
- Actions based on our illusions.
All these input mechanisms lead us to draw conclusions, give judgements and finally react to the situations which eventually leads to dramas which may or may not make us happy. In fact, it often pushes us away from being happy.
Our senses can only help us gain a relative knowledge due to its limited range. Today, even the scientific facts which were proven right in the past are changing with the passage of time, even as man is evolving with his deeper understanding. Change is constant, which proves that what is proven is not the eternal truth. Spirituality opens up the mind to step out of the drama of life and see the eternal truth which never changes.
Our mind is a cautious machine which gives logical reasons as to why our thinking and perceptions are correct and hence should be believed. However, the reasons are based on our senses which have a limited range and which create illusions which the mind believes as truths.
All the drama in life is created only because of our illusions and beliefs. Spirituality makes one realise that we are just role players in this drama. Our true being has nothing to do with this drama. We are here only to experience the pure essence of the universe which rules our lives and our birthright of being happy. We need to channelize the pure energies and live a mindful life which would eventually help us lead a happy, fruitful and joyous life in the true sense.
Our Indian Vedic scriptures have very beautifully stated that “when one tunes into the spiritual sound vibrations, one can get aligned to the universal truth and see things as they are”.
We, human beings, are spiritual beings. Rising above the basics of living makes us different from animals.
It is rightly stated in the Mahabharat as:
Samanyam etad pashubhir naranam
Dharmo hi tesham adhiko vishshesho
Dharmena hina pashubhih samanah
All the activities like eating, sleeping, defending, mating are common in animals and humans. Human beings can be considered superior only when they seek and walk on the path to acquire the eternal and absolute truth.
The human soul has a separate consciousness which is unique in every person. It is a beautiful personality which is created by weaving in eternity, bliss and knowledge. (Sat-Cit-Ananda).
We are all divine beings but in the quest for happiness (material), one enters into the arena of competition where few win and many lose. Few attain happiness at the cost of many being sad.
When one is in the “Power of Self”, identity is clear. One accepts the divine powers, talents gifted by the universe and is happy, contented and knows the purpose of life.
When one understands that each one person is unique, how does the question of competition arise? Where is the question of winning/losing? Where is the question of being happy/sad?
All the misunderstandings with one’s identity creates the foul drama of life pushing one away from experiencing happiness.
Importance of prayer in Spirituality:
Prayer puts one into a state of connectedness to the higher self or higher wisdom and this helps one to search for the purpose or meaning in life. It helps one to understand the spiritual being within us which knows the true state of happiness.
Prayer should be sincere, loving, ardent, deep and with a sense of complete surrender to the universe. When one prays in such a state, alignment with the universe is experienced and transformational shifts are seen at the body-mind-soul levels.
When prayer gets meditative and goes into deeper forms, the monkey mind is quietened, wisdom, knowledge and deeper understanding unfolds, leading one to align with his/her true identity. Inner wisdom is sharpened and enthusiasm is heightened.
This state enables one to be happy, truly happy which is in its purest form and has no limitations or conditions attached.
Science has proven that there is a direct correlation between spirituality and happiness.
We are fortunate that India, being a land of spiritual scientists, could have the seeds of spirituality imbibed in the culture for centuries and is now spreading its essence across the world and living up to its name BHARATA….
All put together as leading a life with the right emotion created by the right vibration and moving ahead in perfect rhythm.