Happiness is overrated. Peace is overrated. But we need those concepts as much as we need religion and alcohol. We are strange beings. We are like the sea. To be at peace, to be constant, is impossible. It’s against nature.
As soon as civilization began, so began the efforts to discipline the mind. The yogas, the tantras, the chants and the martial arts…what have we not done to control the wild horses in our heads. Few claim to have succeeded; others are just headless chickens searching for their eggs.
We all seek happiness. But can never maintain a state of happiness for too long. We reason that it’s too fleeting. Is it or are we? Let’s be honest, happiness is boring. You have a great job, married the love of your life and kids are getting A plusses. Do you go to bed with a smile on your face every night? No, you chase the meaning of life. You plan to become a top dog in some big MNC. A few years of that and you trade it for the shares and the grind of a start up.
They say it takes a little bit of salt to get the perfect sweetness in a dessert. Does it take a little bit of unhappiness to be absolutely content with life? Most of us equate life to standing on a narrow ledge in perfect balance.
Then, why do we feel alive when we leap off it?
Why does it feel so good to throw it all away?
Why is it such a relief to go to the back of the row and wait for your turn all over again?
We are not mad, we are not salmonella or pea aphids, we are not a suicidal species. We are all mildly self-destructive, but there is no reason to run too far with that argument.
So, if happiness is not worth chasing, what is? Is it productivity? Fulfillment? Actualization? I don’t know, man. Go, see a baba or guru if you want such answers. All I have is questions.