- Religion and Philosophy»
The world can never yield true happiness!
True happiness do not belong to the world!
What is real happiness? Are we getting happiness or joy through worldly acquisitions, relationships, power and fame? Are we happy with our degrees? Before going into these questions, let us understand ‘happiness’. Happiness is a sense of wellbeing in our day to day life. If we possess the worldly acquisitions, wealth, wife and children, can we term it as happiness? The religious scriptures stamp these as ‘ephemeral’.
For instance, a millionaire acquire a beautiful mansion to his taste, he may feel a temporary joy or exultation. Now the real question is “Has the mansion is capable of giving him perennial happiness? Even if it is granted that living in the spacious mansion makes one happy, ‘how long one can live there? You might have registered the acquisition in your name! What will happen when you move away from the palatial building on account of certain unfortunate situations, can you derive the same happiness? It is only as long as we live in a place, we can claim ownership.
Here I remember a story told by Sathya Saibaba to the students and devotees. One poor man wants to know about his future and hence he went to a palmist who is an expert in reading the lines of the palm. After viewing the shape of the palm and the lines positioned there including other aspects, the palmist told the poor man, “You are very lucky, soon you will get a fortune; you will marry a beautiful girl of a rich merchant. You will possess cars and mansions with many servants to attend your needs. The poor man in his excitement becomes delirious about the sudden pronouncement of luck. He wanted to hear further more from the palmist. He pestered him to look at his palm for more such lucky lines. The palmist thoroughly checked his pam and suddenly he became gloomy!
The poor man was sad to see the face of the palmist and anxiously enquired him to reveal the reason of his gloom. The palmist sadly told him, ‘your life line is short. You may not live for many years! This pronouncement was really a shock to the poor man. After acquiring all that is needed for happy living, if one has to depart suddenly, what is the use of those material goods or relationships? Hence one needs to remain alive to enjoy the blessings of luck.
Hence, the scriptures are very clear about this point. “Nothing is permanent in this world. All your possessions will leave you in a trice as we witness in the news depicting grave calamities likes flood, earthquake, volcanos and tornadoes. Daily we watch in the media, the devastating effects of nature’s fury. These things should reveal the truth to one and all that nothing pertains to the world could give us real happiness!
The next step is to find out ‘what contribute to real and permanent happiness? First of all we must realize that earthly pleasures are momentary and fleeting. It is not the possessions or relationships which give us joy. Joy emanates from the Self and the happiness we derive from external things are really a minute portion of the bliss of inner self. God has created the illusory world and the myriads of sensual pleasures so that man can understand that no worldly things can give him lasting happiness. If he is really satisfied with his possessions, he won’t seek to acquire more and more. Hence the sages teach us to focus on the inner self through meditation and other practices.
After several years of penance, Buddha realized this eternal truth. He was born and brought up in palace by his father, the King. He was not allowed to witness the worldly distress and grief. He married a beautiful queen and he had a son through her. In spite of extreme caution, Siddhartha (Buddha) one day sneaked away from the palace and witnessed horrible things outside. He saw a beggar, an aged man and a funeral procession. He enquired about these with someone, who revealed the travails of earthly life, the inevitability of disease and death to one and all. Buddha was shocked to know this. One night, he left the palace in search of Truth. After moving to many places and begging his food, ultimately Buddha got wisdom through meditation. He realized that the world is full of grief and everything here is fleeting.
The pertinent question is “why the creator has subjected all the beings to grief and troubles in between paltry pleasures? The answer is clear. Everyone should realize the impermanent nature of earthly life and seek only his Self, leaving all the attachment to the mundane life! Only when we merge in the self, we will attain eternal bliss and immortality.