If you’re reading this, already it’s too late for you.
I have to inform you that the person who was truly ready to make progress and become happier would have never clicked on an article with such a title at all. Unfortunately, you’re going the wrong direction by believing that I can help you. You’re actually getting unhappier.
Are you buying all this? Are you really so dense that you’re believing that you shouldn’t be believing me?
Oh, my. You’ve got some explaining to do. Two steps further from happiness.
I should warn you to stop reading altogether; you might be a few steps away from being a miserable wreck.
Stop a third.
Are you wondering how this happiness business all works? I hope you are. I hope you’re feeling confused. Nothing wrong with that; it means you’re ready to learn. Worry not, these most perplexing questions will be resolved in time, but allow me to gradually wind my way there -- first I have some important things I need to tell you.
Now I know you’re a smart cookie, so you’re probably wondering whether believing me will or not will put you in the direction of happiness. I’ll give you this, put aside for a moment, if you can, the whole question of belief and just read what I have got to say, and we will deal with all this belief stuff at the end.
Let’s start here: stop chasing happiness.
You don’t even know what it is. Think of those acrobats in the circus who shoot themselves out of cannons. Do you think they just hop on in there hoping and praying somebody set up a net for them without even checking? Shoot yourself out of a cannon this way and you’re in for some bruises and blows when you touch down.
That’s a metaphor for you chasing after your happiness, rocket man, and/or woman. You love the thrill and the danger that there might be some perfect pleasure or good feeling or ending to your pain. You want to believe it’s there so badly that you don’t even want to look to see if it is there, for fear of discovering that it is not. Sure, you don’t like to think about what happens when you hit the ground, but the hope that you’ll be miraculously saved keeps you going again and again all the same.
You get yourself into all sorts of trouble this way, and the reason you do it is for happiness.
Here’s an instance: you see a gal you find attractive, next thing you know you’re in a relationship that has turned sour because you thought, “hey, they tell me this will make me happy, right?”
You don’t know. You’ve no clue. All the best to you and try to stick the landing.
See, you don’t know what you want. You think you know what you want, but if you ever bothered to look closely you’d realize you have no real idea at what it is you’re trying for. If you knew what you wanted, you could just go and get it. But you don’t know, so you go and create a whole cannon-situation where you might just stumble into something good.
Do you have any clue what happiness is? I don’t. I know I feel good sometimes, I feel content, I feel loved, I feel welcomed, I feel relieved, I feel fulfilled. Whatever these things are I feel them now and again along with the usual selection of less than desirable emotions.
But happiness? Er ... what’s that exactly?
My advice to you: stop being sloppy. Don’t just go throwing words around hoping they’ll come to life. Don’t go on firing yourself out of cannons for the hope of illusions.
Let’s put two and two together and flip the equation.
The reason you fire yourself out of a cannon is not to get true happiness, but to get away from the fact that you don’t have happiness. You’re discontent with reality, so you create a pain for yourself just to get the pleasure of it going away, and then proceed to act like you’re searching for something.
Nobody who’s ever been happy found it by firing themselves out of a cannon. They already had it, so they never had the urge to fire themselves in the first place.
You’ll never find it this way, because it’s not the result of a search. The search is the distraction. The search means you are lost and getting further from the goal. The happiness or unhappiness doesn’t come after the looking for it, it determines whether there is a “looking” in the first place.
When you were born, and when you were a child, was there looking for anything? I would think not. And I would bet you were happy, isn’t it?
The search comes when we decide we’ve lost something we’ve never had; when we decide we must have something that never existed; when we decide there are fantasies preferable to realities. When we decide our present condition constitutes “unhappiness” and there is some “happiness” to cure it.
Drop it all. Find what is real.
Forget about everything until you actually know something. If you don’t know what happiness is, forget it.
Let’s go back to the start of this post. I told you that if you were reading those first words you were going backwards away from happiness, because no happy person would want to hear anything about what anyone else said about happiness. I said if you believed me you were going backwards still.
Do you believe anything I say now?
Are you getting closer or further from happiness?
The answer is…
... stop wondering about any of this.
I’m messing with you. I’m playing with your head, and with your emotions because you made yourself vulnerable. The answer is who cares what I say.
Look how sloppy you are: it is absurd that I could know anything about your state of happiness.
I have no clue!
You could be the happiest man in the world for all I know and here I’d still be telling you how you feel and whether you’re going forwards or backwards or leftways or rightaways.
You’re the one who let yourself get sucked up into the storm and blown around the block when you believed me. You abandoned all responsibility for taking your situation into your hands because it’s easier to believe someone else knows more, because then someone else can help you, and then you can have your happiness.
You ass, you made it all up, see?
It’s all your inventions. I can lead you around by the nose all day long if you let me, because you decided to believe I had anything to do with you and your feelings and your happiness.
Happiness is the excuse to let me do this.
It means you’ll shoot yourself from a cannon just to allow yourself to hope there’s a net. God forbid somebody, someday tells you that if you just don’t go firing yourself around town you won’t need a net in the first place. But you’d probably turn and run away as fast as you could.
Okay, so what’s the takeaway from all this mess? I'll do my best to get it nice and neat for you.
Stop being sloppy.
Figure out what you want.
Examine yourself closely.
Raise your consciousness of your own desires and beliefs.
Realize you’re the one who does all this, not me. I can’t tell you anything. Everything I am and everything I can give you is what you allow me to.
And lastly, see about this happiness you desire. See whether it’s really something you can find; whether all you’re searching is just a distraction.
My guess is you’ll become happy as a clam the second you’re finally able to forget happiness even exists.